War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0835 Chapter XXIII. BATTLE OF FAIR OAKS, OR SEVEN PINES.

Search Civil War Official Records

On the 2nd instant, at 9 a.m., the regiment left camp and marched to intrenchments in front of the camps recently abandoned. There it received orders to proceed by a road to the left, deploy through the woods up to small abatis which it was supposed that the rebels had recently placed to impede the progress of our forces. After advancing half a mile it reached a large abatis constructed by our forces before the position was abandoned commanding the road to Richmond, which was occupied by the regiment, and a company commanded by Captain Harrison and accompanied by myself was thrown forward and reconnoitered a distance of a mile without discovering any signs of the rebels. During the day two other reconnaissance were made, one in company with a squadron of cavalry. One of these parties exchanged shots with the rebel pickets.

On the 3rd instant, in the forenoon, the regiment occupied the position of the day before. At 3 p.m. sent out a party of skirmishers under command of Lieutenant Benard and accompanied by Lieutenant-Colonel Burtis, which fell in with the reserve of the enemy's pickets within half a mile of our post. Two volleys were exchanged in which several of our men were wounded. Shortly afterward we could hear the enemy in considerable force preparing to advance. About 5 p.m. a volley was poured into the right flank of the abatis by the enemy without occasioning any loss. About 6 a.m. we could hear their men distinctly advancing in double-quick. At this time I directed the abatis to be abandoned and the regiment to form in line of battle on the left flank, in order to allow our artillery to sweep in front of our position if the enemy attempted to advance. Here we stood on arms for three hours, the enemy no doubt abandoning his intention on account of realizing the object of our movement. At 11 p.m. we were relieved by a New Jersey detachment.

I have the honor to be, general, your very obedient servant,

CHARLES K. GRAHAM,

Colonel.

Lieutenant H. E. TREMAIN, A. A. A. G., Excelsior Brigade.

Numbers 48. Report of Colonel Samuel H. Starr,

Fifth New Jersey Infantry, commanding Third Brigade.

HDQRS. THIRD BRIGADE, HOOKER'S DIVISION.

Camp near Seven Pines, six miles from Richmond, Va..

June 4, 1862

SIR: I have the honor to report the part taken by this brigade in the affair with the enemy on the 1st instant.

Two regiments of the brigade, the Seventh and Eighth New Jersey, were sent back as a guard for the depot of supplies at Bottom's Bridge, and took no part in the engagement. The other two, the Fifth and Sixth New Jersey, under General Patterson, marched forward from our late camp late on the afternoon of the 31st ultimo. General Patterson was very ill and unable to take active command, but accompanied us in the advance. The road and fields on both sides of the road were thronged with flying regiments from the the battle ground, 2 or 3 miles in front, through whose routed and disorderly masses I was compelled to force my way with bayonet and saber.