War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0551 Chapter XXIII. BATTLE OF WILIAMSBURG, VA.

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turn now. Every man was in his place, and we poured a volley into them which thinned their ranks terribly. Blinded and dismayed they still pressed on, firing wildly at random. Again our forces poured into them, sending death and destruction into their midst. They wavered, they faltered, they halted. We saw our advantage. Sending forth cheer on cheer we steadily advanced and poured into them until the rout was complete. The force which had attacked us was transformed into a mob and fled wildly across the field. The battle-field being ours, my men assisted in collecting the wounded and bestowing the best care upon them which the circumstances would allow.

I would particularly call the attention of the general commanding the First Brigade to the gallant and efficient conduct of Lieutenant-Colonel Chandler and Major Harris, both of whom rendered me the most valuable assistance. In the line officers I can make no distinction whatever. They were all at their posts, and each one did his duty nobly and manfully.

I am, sir, very respectfully, yours,


Colonel, Commanding Sixth Maine Volunteers.


Assistant Adjutant-General, First Brigade.

No. 51. Report of Colonel Edwin C. Mason,

Seventh Maine Infantry.


Hdqrs. 7th Maine Vols., Camp near Williamsburg, Va., May 6, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of operations of my regiment during the engagement of yesterday at this point. Being under the orders of Brigadier-General Hancock, of the First Brigade, of Smith's division, during the advance of the force under his command on this position, my regiment was held in reserve and ordered to support the Fifth Wisconsin. When the general took up a position before the enemy's works my regiment was posted on the right, and about 300 yards in rear of the batteries. My orders in this position were to prevent the enemy from outflanking us on the right. I remained in this position and take the batteries. My orders in this position were to prevent the enemy from outflanking us on the right. I remained in this position until about 5 p.m., when the enemy advanced in force to storm our position and take the batteries. As the artillery and supports fell back I slowly retired to the rear, halting frequently. This movement was necessary to enable me to unmask the woods on my right. After retiring about 75 yards I halted, and threw a strong flanking party into the woods, to check a flank movement of the enemy, should he attempt it, and also to give me time to change my front.

Being now at liberty to turn my attention to the front, I saw that the general had placed the artillery in position on the right and left of the fort in our possession and the infantry in line of battle on the crest of the slope. The enemy was rapidly advancing in lines of battle, the first one being within 150 yards. General Hancock, now having his entire force in battle order, gave the order for the line to advance on the enemy. I immediately gave the order to fix bayonets and charge. With cheers the men dashed forward, and as the regiment came on the brow of the hill I threw in a volley. A few moments afterward the line was