War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0907 Chapter XXIII. BATTLE OF FAIR OAKS, OR SEVEN PINES.

Search Civil War Official Records

resolute and persistent, was unsuccessful, and the Tenth, with the regiment in its company, was again forced to the open field after half an hour's fighting; but the movement, although costing us many valuable officers and men, was of great service in checking the advance of the advantage was taken of a spur of the woods to again rally the regiment and make another sported attack upon the enemy, and at this point his progress was checked, no further attempt being made by him to press forward here. As these rallies and attacks of the Tenth Massachusetts were under my own immediate supervision, I desire especially to commend the courage and efficiency which I saw exhibited by Captain Miller, its then commander, whose efforts to check the progress of the enemy and to recover some portion of the ground lost by us were most creditable to himself and the regiment.

It is due to a gallant young officer that I should state that in rallying and in leading forward the regiment, besides the support of the other officers of the regiment, Captain Miller received most sported and valuable assistance from my aide-de-camp, First Lieutenant W. B. Storer, whose services throughout the day were of most signal value. In the action seven companies of the Tenth Massachusetts, numbering about 500 men, and eight companies of the Thirty-sixth New York, numbering about 400 men, were engaged, the other companies of these regiments being on picket duty; and it will be seen from the list which I annex that the casualties were heavy, especially in the former, but I believe both regiments are entitled to the credit of having done their duty faithfully. Colonel Briggs for his resolute exertions in lasting forward and rallying his men, and Colonel Innes for the firmness with which he held the position assigned him and the resolution with which, when compelled to make good hiss retreat to a tenable position - taking more prisoners from the enemy, who endeavored to intercept him, than he lost-are both entitled to much credit. The reports of Colonels Briggs and Innes will be forwarded as soon as received. The Seventh Massachusetts not having been under my immediate command in the action, I depend entirely on the report of Colonel Russell, which will be forwarded as soon as received.

As an officer belonging to this brigade, although on duty with the division, I take pleasure in calling attention to Lieutenant Eccleston, the provost-marshal, whose efficiency I had many opportunities of observing this day. Neither the Tenth Massachusetts nor the Thirty-sixth New York were engaged on Sunday, June 1.

I would call the particular attention of the commanding general to the invaluable services of Dr. O'Leary, surgeon of this brigade, whose faithful and untiring devotion to the wounded men and the careful and marked attention which he gave to the condition of each individual case coming under his notice is worthy of the highest commendation.

A wound from a musket-ball, received by me during the struggle in which the regiments to the right of this brigade were compelled to give way, although not so severe as to force me to quit the field on the day of action, is so far disabling as to oblige me to relinquish active duty for, I trust, a very brief period.

I am, captain, your obedient servant,

CHAS. DEVENS, JR.,

Brigadier-General, Commanding Third Brigade.