War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0233 Chapter XX. BATTLE OF NEW BERNE, N. C.

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colonel commanding Charles Mathewson. At the signal the light-draught steamer Union, with the Fourth Rhode Island Regiment on board, and the tug-boat Alert, with about twenty small boats in tow with detachments from the other regiments, steamed for he shore at the mouth of Slocum's Creek to make a landing at the point indicated by the general commanding in person. Finding obstructions in the mouth of the creek the steamer was unable to reach the bank, and the men were landed in small boats; an operation consuming much time. The men wee immediately formed on their respective colors, and as the several regiments were landed they took up their line of march, following for some distance up the right bank of the Neuse River to a point where a company of the enemy's cavalry had been posted on advance-guard duty. Here the road leaves the river, and after passing one or two farm-houses in the pine woods it strikes the main county road leading from Beaufort to New Berne. This we followed for a short distance, and soon came to an extensive line of intrenchments crossing the road and extending to the railroad. This was entirely abandoned by the enemy. Here the railroad crosses the county road at an acute angle, and as the two roads continue on to New Berne in close proximity, the main command was divided. My brigade, by the order of the general commanding, followed General Foster on the county road, while General Reno marched up the railroad. Near night-fall we reached the second crossing of these roads, and as the command continued on in the same order, General Reno's brigade occupied the left. The march was kept up until after dark, when orders were received the halt and bivouac for the night. The regiment were then placed in position on the road-side. The roads generally were in bad order, and the men marched in many localities through water and mud. In addition, heavy showers fell at intervals during the day and night, and although the men had their overcoats and blankets the bivouac was extremely trying.

On the following morning, the 14th, the brigade was under arms and ready for the march soon after daylight. Before starting I detailed, by order of the general commanding, the Eleventh Connecticut Regiment to relieve one of General Reno's regiment sin bringing up the boat howitzers and guns which had arrived during the night. Soon the whole command was in motion, my brigade following the guns, which were directly behind General Foster, while General Reno moved up the railroad. It was not long before the advance had engaged the enemy, and it was soon found that in the attack we would be exposed to a flank fire from heavy artillery as well as from field artillery and musketry in our front. The country is generally level and smooth and covered with a growth of pine and occasional clumps of undergrowth, the whole being styled "open piney woods.' On the field in front of the enemy this character of ground extends from the river to the vicinity of the railroad and running off to the left. Owing to the dense fog that prevailed but little could be seen, although the timber in front of the enemy had all been felled.

As before stated, my brigade followed General Foster's up the county road directly in rear of the howitzers. When the head of the column had nearly reached the edge of the woods, and General Foster's brigade was being placed in position and engaging the enemy, the general commanding directed me to file to the left and take up a position from which I could support either General Foster or General Reno when the occasion required. I directed the brigade through the timber, and