for more than a quarter of a mile. Here their farther advance lay over an open field, behind which, under cover of heavy forest timber and dense underbrush, the retreating foe had taken shelter. With a gallantry and impetuosity which has rarely equaled and certainly never excelled since the war began, these brave and daring Louisianians and Georgians charged through this open field and actually drove from their cover the whole brigade, supposed at the time to be Sickles'.
Our loss in the charge was heavy, including Lieutenant-Colonel Shivers, who wounded in the arm; and the enemy, being re-enforced by the addition of Berry's brigade, our force was compelled to retire for a short distance, which was accomplished in good order.
During this time a strong force of the enemy, afterward ascertained to be Meagher's brigade, was pushed forward on the left and near the Williamsburg road, and moving rapidly upon soon drove our pickets back from our lines. At this important juncture Colonel [Henry M.] Rugledge's North Carolina Regiment came up to our assistance,having been ordered up by Brigadier-General Ransom in compliance with my request for support. Colonel Rutledge was ordered to move down on the left of the road, supported by the Third Georgia Regiment, Major J.r. Sturges commanding, engage the enemy, and, if possible, to drive him out of the woods. This movement was executed in handsome style and with complete success. The enemy now having been driven on both sides of the road to the position which they occupied when the fight commenced, except for a few rods in our center and our extreme right, where their immense force had succeeded in maintaining the advantage won from us in the morning, a strong effort was made to dislodge us on the immediate right and left of the road, and a battery of heavy guns, strongly supported by infantry, was moved down the road to within a short distance of our lines. This movement was unobserved, owing to the dense woods on both sides of the road; the road itself at this point turning suddenly to the right secured them an unobserved advance, and the movement was not detected until the opened upon our thinned ranks a murderous fire of shell, grape, and canister. On the immediate right of the road the First Louisiana and Twenty-second Georgia were still posted, supported by Colones [William J.] Clarke's and [S. D.] Ramseur's regiments of North Carolina troops, ordered up by General Ransom, and bravely maintained their position. On the left of the road the enemy made a vigorous attack, and under cover of their battery a heavy force of infantry was advanced upon Colonel Rutledge's command, who received their fire with great coolness and obstinately disputed their farther approach.
As soon as the enemy's battery opened upon us I ordered Captain Frank Huger, with a section of his battery, to advance upon the left of the road, and under cover of a point of woods to bring his guns into action at a point about 800 yards distant from the enemy's battery. This movement was executed with great celerity, and, suddenly unmasking his guns from behind the point of woods, Captain Huger opened a well-directed fire upon the enemy's battery, which in a very few minutes disabled their guns and drove them from the field. Captain Hunger advanced his battery, upon the retreat of the enemy, to within a few rods of the position recently occupied by the enemy's guns, and poured a heavy fire upon their infantry, then concealed in the thick woods on both sides of the road.
Colonel Rutledge, with his own and Major Sturges' (Third Georgia) regiment, had not only maintained his position on the left of the road, but had with these two small regiments actually advanced upon and