War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0956 THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN, VA. Chapter XXIII.

Search Civil War Official Records

advance, which was through a thick and entangTh(1 abatis, formed by filing the trees in oI)l)osite directions, which was ditlicult and tedious to march through. At this time I first saw the redoubt of the enemy about half a mile in front, au(l somewhat to the right, of my center, which caused me to right-oblique immy command. The enemy also had a section of a battery (two pieces) which was dealing (lestruction to my left wing, while my center and right wing were being mow-ed down by grape and canister from the redoubt; but the men steadily advanced in admirable order. The enemy fled from the field lAcces on my left, and we then concentrated our whole attention to the redoubt. Between this entangled brush-wood and the redoubt ~va~s a 1lo~ved field, ren- dered very muiry by the late rains, in which the men would mire ankle deep at every Stel) ; through this we continued our way. Other regi- mnents at this time were emerging from time thicket both on my right and left, when I gave the order to charge 111)011 the redoubt, ~vhich was (lone by my men in gallant style. When within about 100 yards ot the redoubt my horse was killed, catching me ltlm(ler him iii his l~mh1. Assistamice came and I was extricated ummii~jurcd, whiemi we rushed omi. When within 30 or 40 yards of the redoubt 1 saw that we were 200 yards in advance of any other regiment and thought best to fall back to a ditch midway between the redoubt and entangled woods, which I ordered, and the regiment retired in good order; but the color-hearer mnisnndcrstan(ling time order, fell back beyond the ditch to this entali gled brush. Those wlmo had taken cover in the (litcll then followed the colors, which were then halted, and all ordered to lie down, bei mig still w-ithin 250 yards of tIme redoubt. About this time our battery arrived and comnmence(l ~)laying Upomi the enemy. As an evidence of tile severity of time fire of the cimemny wimile in front of the battery. 46 of my men were found killed within an area of one acre. After allowing my mcmi time to recover from their fatigue, just then I saw my third color-bearer shot (lown. Captain Simontomm and mnyself rushed up to raise time colors. (Japtaimm Simnonton, reaching them first, placed tlmemn in my hands, raising them aloft, cahl- immg upon mny men to rally around their stamidard. It was done with alacrity, and, together with several other regimnents, we reached the redoubt, the enemny fleeing. About 300 yards distant to tlme left I saw two regimnents of the enemy drawn imp imi line of battle, l)rotected and partialhy colmceale(1 by woods. 1 faced mny mnen to the left and (loimble-quicked thmem througlm an open field to reach a cover of tIme samne woods, but before reachmimig it I saw breastworks to my right thrown up, which tIre eminemny were leavimmg. and ordered my mmmcmi to mnove by the right flank amid 0-ct l)ehmimld timeir breastworks, firing upomi tlmemn (ilirimig the while, wlmichm was continued until I saw a reginment of ours marelmimig to tIme left to attack tlmemmm. I ordere(l themmm to cease firing for fear of shooting our friemmds. 1mm a short time we were ordered torwar(l to support a regimnemint in front amid to our right, which was done. X\Thile at this sl)ot, of minmy fommr officers wino lma(l followed the flag through time (lay two were shmot Captain Simontomi killed instantly an(l Captain Wood very seriously woiumde(l. From hmere we were ordered to fall back fromn thme breast- works ammd imi a short timne it became dark 111(1 or(lers arrived tor mne to retire to the road. Just before (10mg 50 I ordered t.hemn to count the number themm present, whinich w as 54, whose names shmould l)e immost Imon- orably memmtioned. Particularly conspicuous amommg them for coolness and deeds of dar- ing were Lee A. Steel, of Compammy B; Robert Peel, of Coin pammy 1),