War of the Rebellion: Serial 013 Page 0396 THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN, VA. Chapter XXIII.

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About sunset I was ordered to the right, and I can bear testimony that the ground held by the center of your division when the battle opened was held by your troops in the face of a large force of the enemy long after dark.

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


Colonel One hundred and forty-ninth Regiment Pa. Vols. late Major First Rifles.

[Extract from the report of Captain J. Cuthbertson, commanding Ninth Pennsylvania Reserves (temporarily).]

WASHINGTON, November 4, 1862.


GENERAL: * * * This regiment was at the commencement of the action of June 30 placed in support of Cooper's battery. The enemy consumed a couple of hours in a number of ineffectual attempts to take this battery, several times charging up within a few yards of the guns, but each time driven back with great slaughter.

About 6 o'clock this regiment was ordered to the left, the enemy apparently making headway there, leaving other troops to support the battery. When the enemy on the left was repulsed we were moved to the rear of Cooper's battery, which had just been taken by the enemy.

The regiment was ordered to retake the battery, and the men advanced, cheering lustily, to the attack, although it was in possession of a superior force and was defended with great vigor. A hand-to-hand struggle ensued; muskets were clubbed and bayonets were used; the enemy was driven from the guns, fleeing in great confusion, our men after them to the road. Here our men were with difficulty halted, I having to catch hold of the color-bearer to stop him.

The regiment then fell back. Soon afterward a body of the enemy several times our number came up and were at once engaged, our men behaving with a valor and heroism that could not be surpassed. Though not over 50 yards separated us and officers and men fell rapidly under the terrible fire, not a man faltered. In a few minutes a musket-ball passed through both my thighs. It was then nearly dark, and as I was carried off I could see my gallant comrades were still maintaining the unequal contest with a recklessness of life that astonishes me when I now calmly reflect upon it.

As near as I can estimate it was about fifteen minutes before 8 o'clock when I was wounded. I was the senior captain, and temporarily in command of the regiment at the time. This regiment during this battle was not at any time in rear of the line of battle adopted by you.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Senior Captain, Ninth Regiment Pennsylvania Reserves.

[from Colonel Biddle Roberts, commanding First Regiment Pennsylvania Reserves.]


DEAR GENERAL: * * * The brigade to which my regiment was attached June 30 was under command of the late lamented and gallant Colonel Seneca G. Simmons and held a position near the center of your line, and you will remember that soon after the action commenced I received a personal order from you to advance the regiment to the support of Kerns' battery, which was at once done. From this position I had a view of portions of the three brigades of the division. We received two distinct charges from the enemy, which were repulsed successfully. We suffered severely, but fought on to the close of the day. * * *

Very truly, yours,


Commanding First Regiment Pennsylvania Reserves.

[Extract from report of Colonel John H. Taggart, commanding Twelfth Regiment Pennsylvania Reserves.]

WASHINGTON, November 18, 1862.


GENERAL: * * * My regiment on the 30th June was assigned a position by yourself on the left of your division. Shortly afterward General Seymour made a change, posting six companies in a breastwork of logs hastily constructed and four companies as a support to two 20-pounder guns of the Dutch battery. At 5 p.m. a sudden and vigorous attack was made on my left and front. My men opened fire on the advancing foe, but the charge was so impetuous that after a short hand-to-hand struggle, in which many men were killed and wounded, the six companies fell back