War of the Rebellion: Serial 013 Page 0911 Chapter XXIII. SEVEN-DAYS' BATTLES

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part of some of the artillery. Graham's battery seems to have completely stampeded, the pieces and caissons got entangled among he trees, some of the drivers cut their traces and off upon the horses, and the whole thing resulting in the loss of two guns and three caissons.

Of all this I was totally ignorant until about 9 or 10 o'clock at night. Captain Graham by that time had succeeded in collecting some of his horses and men. I went back with him and endeavored to recover his guns and caissons. One caisson was recovered, being near the road. The remaining carriages it was found impossible to find, owing to the darkness and the pieces being off the road in a thick wood.

Captain Graham went back in the morning, but reported that the enemy's pickets had possession of the ground. He went again after the enemy had evacuated their position on Malvern Hill, but found that his guns had been taken off. He thinks that they were taken into Richmond under the supposition that they had been abandoned by the enemy. Upon this point I cannot even give an opinion. This whole matter will be made the subject of investigation, as General holmes has ordered charges to be preferred against the officers, upon whom at present the responsibility appears to rest.

It is with pleasure that I turn from the relation of these mortifying circumstances in order to call to the favorable notice of the Department the gallant conduct of the few officers and men who were under my immediate command at the rifle battery. Captain Branch, First Lieutenant Cooper, of French's battery, and First Lieutenant Coleman, of Brem's battery served their pieces themselves and did everything that men could do to encourage their men and make their fire effective under a very hot fire from a much larger number of the enemy's guns. Lieutenant Cooper was wounded severely, but declined to leave the fled until positively order to go the surgeon. After he was disabled Sergts. Jesse Newton and George Newton had charge of his two pieces, and acted very gallantly. Other cases of individual good conduct I witnessed, but cannot give names, as the men were mostly strangers to me.

Several of the batteries are much in need of men. There is a good deal of sickness among them, though generally not of a serious nature. I have directed the captains of batteries mostly in need of men to write to the officers in charge of the conscripts of their respective States and ask them to forward the number of conscripts necessary to fill up their batteries. General Holmes has recommended that Cohoon's battalion, which has about 125 effective men, party from Virginia and partly from North Carolina, be disbanded as an infantry battalion and the men assigned to the batteries of this division. If his recommendation should be complied with, this number would just about supply us.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAMES DESHLER,

Colonel, Chief of Artillery, Department of North Carolina.

Brigadier General WILLIAM N. PENDLETON,

Chief of Artillery, C. S. Army, into the Field.