after proceeding a short distance down the road on which we had previously been moving was ordered to return to camp. I was returning, when a heavy fire of artillery and small-arms on the left showed that an attack had been made on Malvern Hill, and it was clear that our forces were being driven back. Orders were given me to move in quickly to the support of our forces engaged, and I did so at a double-quick across the fields. On arriving near the field of battle a staff officer of some of the commands engaged volunteered to direct me to the position in which I could render most service. Under his direction I had posted two of my regiments, and was in the act of posting the remainder when I ascertained that I had been misled. Taking the troops I still had present with me, I proceeded toward the left and reached a position near to the enemy's batteries, but still too far for my short-range guns, and in full range of their artillery. Making my men lie on the ground, they remained in the position until the firing from our side had ceased; then collecting my brigade, I returned to my camp of the morning.
Thus ended the actual fighting of this memorable week, the enemy having during the night evacuated Malvern Hill. During the whole of it officers and men alike had been without cooking utensils or other baggage.
My loss was about 750 in killed and wounded and about 50 in missing. A list of the names having been furnished, a more precise statement in this report is not deemed necessary.
Cols. James H. Lane and Robert H. Cowan, and Lieutenant Cols. E. Graham Haywood, William M. Barbour, Robert F. Hoke, and Thomas J. Purdie, all of whom commanded their respective regiments during the whole or part of the week, merit especial commendation. There are many officers whose good conduct would cause me to take pleasure in making special mention of them, but it is necessary that I confine myself to commanders of regiments, referring, as I do, to their reports for the names of officers under them who distinguished themselves. I take pleasure in recommending to the favorable consideration of the Government those thus mentioned.
My staff suffered in an unusual degree. My assistant adjutant-general, Captain W. E. Canady, had been with me since my appointment to the command of a regiment, and in all situations had shown himself true and faithful. After leaving Mechanicsville he was obliged to return to the hospital, and before the close of the expedition died of typhoid fever. My aide-de-camp, Lieutenant W. A. Blunt, was severely wounded at Cold Harbor, and Lieutenant F. T. Hawks, assistant engineer, was seriously injured on Tuesday. My ordnance officer, Lieutenant James A. Bryan, though instructed to remain with his train in the rear, placed it in charge of an assistant, and continued with me on the field throughout the expedition. My quartermaster, Major Joseph A. Engelhard, did the same as soon as it was possible. All the gentleman named bore themselves with marked gallantry and devotion.
Captain Marmaduke Johnson's battery was attached to my brigade until so much disabled in action as to render it necessary to order it to the rear for repairs. I have reason to think that it performed very important service, but as it was not under my eye, and I have received no report from the captain, I am not able to report the particulars of its action.
I beg leave to say, in conclusion, that it was a week of hard marching and hard fighting with my brigade, presenting few incidents to be committed to paper.