War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0256 OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA. Chapter XX.

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the trenches, rallied, and formed in the woods without panic or confusion, and, having first sent a messenger with an order to Lieutenant-Colonel Burgwyn to follow with the forces on the right, we struck across the Weathersby road for Bryce's Creek, with the intention of getting into the Pollocksville road. On arriving at the creek we found only one small boat, capable of carrying only three men, in which to pass over. The creek here is too deep to for and about 75 yards wide. Some plunged in and swam over, and, swimming over myself, I rode down to Captain Whitford's house, on the Trent, and through the kindness of Mr. Kit Foy, a citizen, procured three more small boats, carrying one on our shoulders from the Trent, with which we hurried up to the crossing. In the mean time Lieutenant-Colonel Burgwyn arrived with the forces of the right wing in excellent condition, and assisted me with the greatest coolness and efficiency in getting the troops across, which after four fours of hard labor and the greatest anxiety we succeeded in doing. Lieutenant-Colonel Burgwyn saw the last man over before he entered the boat. I regret to say that three men were drowned in crossing.

I must here mention favorably the good conduct of the troops under these trying circumstances, a large Yankee force being drawn up in view of our scouts about 1 mile away and their skirmishers appearing just as the rear got over.

Musician B. F. Johnson, Company B, deserves particular mention for his exertions, having ferried over the greater portion of the road for Trenton. We marched night and day stopping at no time for rest or sleep more than four hours.

We arrived at this place safely at noon on the 16th. The loyalty and hospitality of the citizens greatly facilitated our march, furnishing us cheerfully with provisions, wagons, shelter, and guides.

I regret to say that many of our men, despairing of the boats at the creek and determined not to be taken, threw away their guns to swim over; a serious loss to our Government, but scarcely blamable under the circumstances.

This concludes the narration of the principal matters connected with my command during the engagement and retreat. The number of my killed and wounded has not yet been ascertained. Our baggage, of course, was lost, but our sick were safely brought away.

It remains for me to speak of the noble dead we left upon the field. Major A. B. Carmichael fell about 11 a.m., by a shot through the head, while gallantly holding his post on the left under a most galling fire. A braver, nobler soldier never fell on field of battle. Generous and open-hearted as he was brave and chivalrous, he was endeared to the whole regiment. Honored be his memory. Soon after Captain W. P. Martin, of Company H, also fell near the regimental colors. Highly respected as a man, brave and determined as a soldier, he was equally regretted by his command and all who knew him. The Twenty-sixth Regiment are justly proud of their glorious fall. The fate of Captain Rand, of Company D, is yet unknown. When last seen he was almost surrounded by a large force; but, disdaining to fly or surrender, he was fighting desperately with Lieutenant Vinson and a large portion of his company, who refused to leave him. Lieutenant Porter, of Company A, was also left behind wounded. Captain A. N. McMillan was badly wounded, but got away safely.