and then doubling column on the center, together with Colonel Gove's command, who were deployed as skirmishers, I advanced to the front toward the railroad on the elft of the road over which we had passed during the day. Colonel Gove's skirmishers advanced as far as the railroad and then deployed to the left, not crossing the road. I then moved my command, still doubled on the center, to the right of the Hanover road, so called, running easterly from the railroad station, and here I received orders to halt.
At this juncture a section of Captain Griffin's battery arrived, and being stationed on my left between Colonel Gove and my command, commenced shelling the woods across the railroad and over a wheat field. While they were getting ready, however, to discharge their pieces I was ordered to send a company of skirmishers across the railroad and over the wheat field to ascertain, if possible, whether there was any of the enemy in the woods beyond. For this duty I detailed Company G, Captain Sergent. Meanwhile another portion of my command was very industrions in destroying the railroad, telegraph,&c., which was in that locality successfully accomplished.
Captain Griffin's battery now having opened, a reply was received from a small field piece, which the enemy had either stationed on the railroad or in a ravine in the wheat field. My command then received orders to cross the railroad at once into the wheat field beyond; then deploying into lilne of battle advance and take the enemy's artillery; I immediately moved accordingly, but being in lin eof battle, and having advanced about 500 yards, the fire of the enemy ceased.
At this time my skirmishers from Captain Sargent's command notified me that there was a strong force of the enemy, consisting of two or three regiments, in the woods to my right. I immdiately halted my command, and notified General Martindale that the enemy had changed the position of their artillery and were in strong force on my right. I was then ordered to recall my skirmishers,and return across the road to my original position, when orders came from General Porter to advance at once toward Hanover Court-House. At this time all the force left was my own command and several caissons belonging to Captain Griffin's command. They being slightly imbedded in the mud, I was ordered to remain in their rear, also to assist in extricating them, which consumed some twenty minutes' time. They finally moved on at a brisk pace up the Hanover road, my command following in the rear.
We had proceeded but a few yards beyond where the road over which we advanced intersects the Hanover road when an officer of the Fifth Cavalry, much exicted, desired to know where General Martindale was. I informed him, he at the same time telling me that the devils were after us in full force and we would be cut off. I immediately,by the order of General Martindale,moved my regiment by the right flank into the open field on the right of the road;then halted and changed front to the rear on first company; then advanced in line of battle (my right company, Captain Wiggin, being thrown forward as skirmishers) across the road leading the Peake's Station, some 40 ords; there came to a halt. My skirmishers, cautiously advancing, were here fired upon by the skirmishers of the enemy, who were distinctly visible in the skirts of the woods in front, some 400 yards from my main force.
The Forty-fourth New York Regiment, Colonel Stephen W. Stryker, having been detached and acting as a guard to a section of Captain Martin's battery, opportunely arrived just at this time. The battery