Orders were received from General Porter and yourself that our fire was too rapid-to continue at intervals of ten or fifteen minutes, merely to draw the fire of the enemy. This was done for about two hours, when the firing ceased on both sides.
About 2 p.m., in obedience to your orders, I sent Lieutenant Hazlett, with his section, to report to you. The enemy at this time reopened fire. We returned it from time to time until 4 p.m., when their fire ceased and our battery was withdrawn for the night. Once during the afternoon we fired briskly at a body of cavalry (from 50 to 70) which passed rapidly before their intrenchments.
Our ammunition, Parrott's (the percussion shell with Schenkl plungers), was all that could be desired. Of an average of 30 rounds to a gun I remember but two that did not explode.
The effect of our shots upon men could not be seen. Upon tents, &c., it was very evident and satisfactory.
The conduct of the officers (Lieutenants Hazlett, Harrison, and Reed) and of the men was all that could be desired.
The firing of the enemy was good, but though the firing lasted several hours, neither our men nor our horses were touched; this being due in a great measure to the extreme softness of the ground, many of the shells being deeply buried before exploding.
Most respectfully, your obedient servant,
HENRY W. KINGSBURY,
First Lieutenant, Fifth Artillery.
Captain CHARLES GRIFFIN,
Fifth Artillery, Chief of Division Artillery.
Numbers 13. Report of Lieutenant Charles E. Hazlett,
Battery D, Fifth U. S. Artillery, of operations April 5.
HEADQUARTERS BATTERY D, FIFTH ARTILLERY,
Camp near Yorktown, April 6, 1862.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report the following facts with reference to the action of my section yesterday:
After having been detached at about 2 o'clock p.m. I proceeded some distance on the Warwick road to our left, where there was a strong force of the enemy intrenched. They had guns mounted in three earthworks, which were connected by infantry parapets. In the center fort I could four field pieces; in the other, although they appearated to have several guns, I could not see any of them. Just as I left the road to enter the field in front and opposite the works they opened a very heavy fire. They apparently had previously ascertained the range of the road, as the shot plunged into the road, passing over our heads.
I had with me my own section of two 10-pounder Parrotts, and also three light 12-pounder guns belonging to Captain Martin's battery. I opened fire at once, and for a short time the firing was on both sides very severe. The enemy had some light guns outside of their intrenchments in the ditch.
During the early part of the engagement there were 2 men killed and 3 wounded, belonging to Captain Martin's battery.