War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0555 Chapter XXIII. BATTLE OF WILLIAMSBURG, VA.

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1,000 and 2,000 yards, respectively, to the front and left. These works were thickly studded with the enemy's infantry and sharpshooters, who opened a galling fire on my skirmishers, who, being thrown well forward, came within their range.

Pursuant to your orders, I again advanced about 400 yards, and sent forward Companies D and K, under the immediate command of Lieutenant Colonel H. W. Emery, to support my line of skirmishers. The battery having taken a position near some lone farm houses, and being engaged in shelling the enemy's works, I held my remaining five companies to support it, keeping my men well under cover of the crest of a slight elevation, my right resting on a thick wood, well covered by my line of skirmishers, and frequently lying down to avoid the return shots from the enemy's artillery. I maintained this position until about 4.30 o'clock p.m., when a sharp fire of musketry on my line of skirmishers announced the approach of the enemy, who appeared in a long line of infantry and cavalry at a distance of about 400 yards in my front and penetrating the wood on my right. From my position I could then see only the cavalry. Holding my position until the battery had passed to the rear and reached a place of safety and apprehending a charge, I formed my men in square to resist cavalry, but the cavalry, being effectively checked by the fire of my skirmishers, fell in rear of the infantry. I then reduced my square, formed in line of battle, and opened fire on the infantry, who had already commenced a sharp fire on my right, my left being to some extent covered by the farm buildings above mentioned, which buildings at the same time greatly prevented the effectiveness of my fire. After maintaining this position for some time I received your order to fall back fighting which I proceeded to execute to the best of my ability.

In falling back to the point indicated I was immediately unmasked by the buildings and found myself in front of the enemy's center, a heavy regiment, afterward on either flank by other troops, all of whom advanced rapidly, concentrating upon me a rapid and heavy fire. My men fell back in good order, every man loading as he retreated, wheeling and returning the fire of the enemy with a rapidity and coolness worthy of veterans.

In this manner I fell back slowly to the line of battle which had already formed, and with your assistance formed my regiment in the center, a space having been left for that purpose. You then ordered a charge, and the whole line moved forward with a short and well-directed fire, driving the enemy before them like chaff, they fleeing in wild confusion, leaving the field over which they had just pursued my retiring line literally strewn with their dead and wounded, and leaving their battle-flag behind them, which was brought in by one of my men,who handed it to a staff officer to be conveyed to you.

During the entire day my officers and men behaved with great coolness and energy, manifesting a carelessness of danger bordering on recklessness. It is not too much to say that all did their duty, did it well, and at the right time. Saying thus much of all, I cannot refrain, in justice to my own feelings on the field of battle when the result was uncertain, from making special mention of the coolness and gallantry of Adjt. T. S. West and Lieuts. Enoch Totten and J. B. Oliver, whose positions were near me during the engagement, and whose assistance to me in encouraging the men, both by word and example, deserves my gratitude and admiration. Color-Sergt. George B. Madison also deserves special mention. Although severely and painfully