War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0369 Chapter XXIII. SIEGE OF YORKTOWN, VA.

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forts and at once opened fire, as directed by your order. Our shots fell inside the fort, most of them doing good execution, bursting among the troops coming to the front of the fort. The rebels opened fire upon us with two guns-large ones, I think-when we first came into position, but by our own and the other guns were soon silenced. Captain Ayres during the action rode to our front, and observing infantry, directed me to throw shells at them. We did so with great effect, our shells falling in the midst of those who came down to repel the assault by our infantry. I am told by two lieutenants of the Fourth Vermont, who claim to have made a part of those who marched to the assault, that our guns twice shot the rebel flag-staff off, and that if was not afterward raised. Two of the guns of our battery were left on the field during the night, the others being ordered back. We fired occasional shots during the night-say about thirty minutes apart-our shells striking and bursting, with only two exceptions, inside the earthworks. During the night lights were observed in several places beyond the line of forts in the woods. We directed our shots at the lights, and they disappeared. We thought them signal lights, but from works appearing this morning believe they were used by workmen on forts. I cannot forbear the remark that my men behaved admirably.

Supposing you wanted an immediate report, I have used the best means hand to report to you. If any other more formal report be required I will make it.

Respectfully, yours.


Captain First Battery New York Volunteers.

Captain R. B AYRES,

Commanding Artillery, Smith's Division.

Numbers 32. Report of Captain Thaddeus P. Mott,

Third New York Battery, of engagement at Lee's Mill, or Burnt Chimneys.

BEFORE THE ENEMY, April 17, 1862

CAPTAIN: According to order I yesterday followed General Brooks' brigade at 6.30 a.m. At 8.30 a.m. my first section, by orders of General Smith, was brought into position by Lieutenant Flynn at the edge of the woods, about 1,100 yards from the enemy's works. We opened upon the enemy's works with shrapnel, at 2 1/2 seconds time and 2 3/4 elevation, with very good effect. The enemy's firing was excellent, they without doubt having the different ranges along the woods. I brought the balance of the battery into position on the left of my first section, using for my Napoleons shrapnel at 3 1/2 elevation, giving them solid shot at 2 1/2 to 3 elevation. From the reports of my officers the following was the ammunition used at our first position: The right section used 58 rounds of shell and shrapnel; the center section (Napoleons) used 32 rounds spherical case, 8 shells, and 24 solid shot; the left used 45 rounds shell and shrapnel. The battery remained engaged in hot position from 7. 45 until 10 o'clock a.m.

The casualties in our first position were 3 killed and 4 wounded on the first section; 1 horse killed of the first section; 1 horse wounded on the center section and 1 on the left section.