A number of prisoners were taken in these two regiments owing to the fact that in retiring through the woods back to the position from which they had advanced they lost their way and fell into the hands of a body of the enemy that was in the woods.
Returns of the killed and wounded in these two regiments were sent to me, but it has been since ascertained that they are so inaccurate that I forbear to send them, and must refer to the regimental commanders for correct returns.
So well did the officers and men of these two regiments to their duty that it would be invidious to discriminate; but I may be permitted to mention especially the gallant conduct and undaunted courage displayed by the field officers of both regiments: Colonel D. K. McRae, Lieutenant Colonel J. C. Badham, and Major Sinclair, of the Fifth North Carolina, and Colonel William R. Terry, Lieutenant Colonel Peter Hairston, and Major Richard L. Maury, of the Twenty-fourth Virginia, all of whom proved themselves eminently worthy of the positions held by them in their regiments. Of these officers, unfortunately, Lieutenant-Colonel Badham was killed on the field and Colonel William R. Terry and Lieutenant-Colonel Hairston were severely wounded.
I do not wish to be understood as casting reproach upon the Twenty-third North Carolina and Thirty-eighth Virginia Regiments, both of which have since that time encountered the enemy on another field and suffered heavily.
I have received no report of the part taken by the Second Florida Regiment and the Second Mississippi Battalion, on the right, the only reports to me being lists of the killed and wounded. I have no doubt they performed their duty well.
On the list of killed in the Second Florida Regiment is found the name of its colonel, George T. Ward, as true a gentleman and as gallant a soldier as has drawn his sword in this war, whose conduct under fire it was my fortune to witness on another occasion. His loss to his regiment, to his State, and to the Confederacy cannot be easily compensated.
My regular aide, First Lieutenant S. H. Early, and young Mr. John Morrow, of Richmond, a volunteer aide, were both on the field under fire and discharged their duties admirably.
Accompanying this report are copies of reports of some of the regimental commanders.
My own report has been delayed thus long because I have been unable to undergo the labor of writing it.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. A. EARLY,
Brigadier-General, P. A. C. S.
Major J. W. RATCHFORD,
Numbers 76. Report of Colonel D. K. McRae,
Fifth North Carolina Infantry, commanding brigade.
HEADQUARTERS EARLY'S BRIGADE,
May 10, 1862.
GENERAL: I have the honor to report, under your order, the casual-
39 R R-VOL XI