War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0784 THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN, VA. Chapter XXIII.

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rank of file-closers unconscious of peril. The Rev. Mr. Dwight, chaplain of the Sixty-sixth New York, was on the field during the action, administering to the wounded and dying. Captain Kirk, of the Fifty-seventh New York, in charge of the guard which accompanied me during the latter part of the engagement, displayed great coolness under the hottest fire.

I have confined myself to outlines of the battle and to what came before me personally in reference to the operations of my own brigade. Although the brave troops of the second and third lines of Richardson's division, under Howard and Meagher, were near my own, the report of their actions belongs particularly to their immediate commanders; who will permit me, however, to mention the admirable coolness and conduct of Colonel Cross, commanding the Fifth New Hampshire, and Colonel Nugent, commanding the Sixty-ninth New York, and their fine regiments, under a most terrible fire and determined assault of the enemy when my brigade was to retire to place their ammunition. The battle began at 6 o'clock and ended at about 9.30 a.m.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. H. FRENCH,

Brigadier-General of Vols. and Major Second U. S. Artillery.

Numbers 17. Report of Colonel Paul Frank,

Fifty-second New York Infantry.

BIVOUAC NEAR FAIR OAKS STATION, HDQRS. FIFTY-SECOND REGIMENT NEW YORK VOLUNTEERS, THIRD Brigadier, RICHARDSON'S DIV., SUMNER'S CORPS.

SIR: I have the honor to report to you that the regiment left camp near Cold Harbor May 31, 1862, between 2 and 3 o'clock p.m., occupying the left wing of the brigade, right in front, and arrived with the same in close order about 8 o'clock p.m. the same day near the railroad, about one-half mile back of Fair Oaks Station. The brigade thrown up in line, this regiment was ordered about one-fourth of a mile on picket to the front. Arriving there, I found four companies thrown out as pickets from the Fourth Maine, and a portion of the Fortieth New York Volunteers also. The former, occupying the ground across the railroad along the edge of the woods, withdrew. I formed my regiment in line of battle, according to orders received from Captain Fisk, assistant adjutant-general, on the north side of the railroad, in a wheat field, keeping the men under arms, and throwing out a picket about 100 yards on the railroad. About 11 o'clock p.m. I received orders to march the regiment on the railroad track to the brigade camp ground, and was ordered to form line in rear of the Fifty-third Pennsylvania Volunteers, almost parallel with the railroad, keeping the men in readiness.

The following morning, June 1, at daybreak, according to orders, I formed the line, changing direction to the front. About 6 o'clock received orders to form line of battle on the left of the Fifty-third Pennsylvania Volunteers, on the south side of the railroad, having the Eighty-first Pennsylvania Volunteers on my left. About 6.30 o'clock a.m. received orders to march the regiment, left in front, regimental length, following the Eighty-first, in the same direction, farther into the woods, which order I executed, afterward facing in the old direction.