War of the Rebellion: Serial 013 Page 0783 Chapter XXIII. SEVEN-DAYS' BATTLES.

Search Civil War Official Records

forward, and that he had sent to General Longstreet for re-enforcements. On returning to my lines I found one of his regiments on the hill, and directed [it] into line on my right to prevent a flank movement. General Pryor's battery (the Donaldsonville (La.) Artillery) was also placed in position near Smith's, of my brigade, when the two played very handsomely on the enemy's lines, keeping up a constant and well-directed fire. Both companies behaved with great gallantry and coolness, and displayed a skill in the use of their guns highly creditable to that arm of the service. After a protracted and heavy firing on the bank of the creek some hour or hour and a half the enemy abandoned their works and retreated, as I have already stated. Here the firing of small-arms ceased.

About this time General Wilcox's brigade (Thomas Artillery) was also placed in position and fired a few well-directed shots at the retreating foe.

General Wilcox sent one of his regiment down Beaver Dam Creek, on our right, to find a place across which the brigades might pass. Some distance below they found an old bridge which had been torn up by the enemy, but was rebuilt in an hour or two, and the three brigades crossed Beaver Dam Creek and continued the march in pursuit of the enemy in the following order, viz, General Wilcox in front (who after his arrival was senior brigadier), General Pryor next, and my brigade in the rear.

I cannot close this report without expressing my admiration of the conduct of my entire brigade from the beginning to the close of the action. While holding their position on the hill, which was never for a moment yielded, they were subjected to a very heavy and galling fire. The charge was made in excellent order and a good line was preserved, and continuing the fight from the bank of the creek under a very heavy fire of small-arms, they were equally cool and eager to advance upon the enemy. Captain Smith and his company (Third Richmond Howitzers) could not have acted better.

I regret to say that our loss in killed and wounded was comparatively heavy. A list of casualties is herewith appended. Major W. H. Lilly, who was in command of the Twelfth Mississippi Regiment, was wounded while gallantly and coolly discharging his duties at the head of the regiment, and, retiring from the field, left the command to the senior captain (Thomas).

Major [John] Mullins, commanding the Nineteenth Mississippi Regiment, displayed coolness, courage, and skill in the command of his regiment. The Mississippi Battalion, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel John G. Taylor, could not have been a more gallant and skillful officer to direct its movements.

I am also much indebted to my volunteer aides, Captain Parker, Lieutenant Sykes, and Lieutenant Redding, for their valuable services on that occasion. They were always ready to execute with coolness and dispatch any orders delivered to them.

I regret very much that my assistant adjutant-general, Captain George P. Foote, who had been by my side all the time on the field, was killed in this engagement. He fell while gallantly leading one of the regiments in the charge far in advance of the main line. In his fall the army has lost a gallant and skillful officer; society had lost one of its most perfect members, and the Southern Confederacy one of its most promising young man.

For a list of those who particularly distinguished themselves in the