War of the Rebellion: Serial 013 Page 0716 THE PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN, VA. Chapter XXIII.

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About 11 o'clock orders were received to feel the enemy with two regiments. The movement was delayed until about 4 o'clock, when the Seventh and Eighth South Carolina, Colonels Aiken and Henagan, advanced as far as the abatis of the enemy under a heavy fire of artillery and musketry. Finding the enemy in strong force occupying their works the regiments were withdrawn, returning to camp about 10 p.m. Loss, 1 killed and 3 wounded in Seventh South Carolina Regiment.

On the 28th remained in camp. The works of the enemy were occupied by them in force.

On the 29th two regiments of General Kershaw's brigade, South Carolina Volunteers, ordered forward at an early hour. One regiment (Kennedy's) being in reserve, supporting the pickets, had sent out companies to reconnoiter, and finding the enemy's works deserted, the whole regiment occupied the lines most advanced toward ours. The remaining regiments of the brigade, being ordered onward, joined that of Colonel Kennedy, and the whole brigade, under General Kershaw, went forward and took position beyond Fair Oaks Station in the woods to the right of the railroad, keeping their skirmishers well to the front. This brigade was in advance of all other troops and waited their arrival.

The enemy were seen crossing the railroad about a mile or less in front, coming from the woods on our left, but it being understood that General Jackson's forces were crossing at Grapevine Bridge, every one was very much concerned, fearing that we would become engaged with them. So much was General Kershaw we would become engaged with the withheld the fire of his troops and sent a regimental flag down the railroad, waving it, in order to give notice of the presence of Confederate forces.

General Semmes' brigade in the mean while came up along the railroad and was halted behind the works about Fair Oaks Station. The enemy had opened a scattering fire from several pieces, which, however, did nor harm to my command.

General Magruder, having arranged his forces on the left, ordered that General Semmes' brigade should move to Kershaw's position and Kershaw to advance.

General Huger's forces, or a portion of them, were seen at this time coming toward my right flank. They soon, however, retired, going in the direction of the Charles City road. Their purpose I did not understand.

This was about 3 p.m. General Kershaw now advanced his brigade, leaving his left on the railroad, supported by that of General Semmes. Kemper's battery, as it came down the Nine-mile road, was ordered forward, supported by the Tenth Georgia, Colonel Cumming. The brigades advanced in two lines, Semmes receiving orders to cross the Williamsburg road with his right. Not long after passing the junction of the Nine-mile and Williamsburg roads the enemy opened fire from a battery that the enemy retired without engaging with their infantry. Kershaw, continuing the march, relieving the Tenth Georgia from the support of his battery, engaged the enemy with his whole force, Semmes' brigade resting immediately behind and extending well to the right. Kemper's battery, taking position on the right of the Williamsburg road upon elevated ground, opened fire with extraordinary rapidity and great effect. Finding that Kershaw's right was being outflanked by the enemy, I ordered in two regiments from Semmes'