War of the Rebellion: Serial 015 Page 0272 OPERATIONS IN N. VA.,W. VA.,AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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signed them, and remained in reserve until about 4 p. m., when I threw it across the road to stop the retreating masses which had been driven back from the front.

I soon received an order to move my brigade off to the left on double-quick, the enemy having massed their troops during the day in order to turn our left flank. I formed line of battle along the road, my left resting near the edge of the woods in which the battle was raging. Soon our troops came rushing panic-stricken out of the woods, leaving my brigade to face the enemy, who followed the retreating masses to the edge of the woods. The road in which my brigade was formed was worn and washed from 3 to 5 feet deep, affording a splendid cover for my men. My boys opened fire on them and short range, driving the rebels back to a respectful distance. But the enemy, being constantly re-enforced from the masses in their rear, came on again and again, pouring in advance a perfect hurricane of balls, which had but little effect on my men, who were so well protected in their road intrenchment. But the steady fire of my brigade, together with that of a splendid brass battery on higher ground in my rear, which I ordered to fire rapidly with canister over the heads of my men, had a most withering effect upon the rebels, whose columns melted away and fast recoiled from repeated efforts to advance upon my road breastwork from the woods. But the five of the enemy, which had affected my men so little, told with destructive results on the exposed battery in their rear, and it required a watchful effort to hold them to their effective work. My horse was shot in the head by a musket-ball while in the midst of the battery cheering on the men. I got another, and soon after observing the troops on my left giving way in confusion before the rebel fire I hastened to assist in rallying them, and while engaged in this the battery took advantage of my absence and withdrew. I had sent one of my aides shortly before to the rear for fresh troops to support this part of our line where the persistent efforts of the rebels showed they had determined to break through. A fine regiment of regulars was sent, which was formed in rear of my brigade, near the position the battery had occupied. The rebels came around the forest in columns to our right and front, but the splendid firing of the regulars, with that of my brigade, thinned their ranks so rapidly that they were thrown back in confusion upon every attempt made.

About this time, when the battle raged thickest, Lieutenant Este and Lieutenant Niles, of General Schenck's staff, reported to me for duty, informing me that General Schenck had been seriously wounded and his command thrown back from the field. Most thankfully was their valuable assistance accepted, and most gallantly and efficiently did they assist me on that most sanguine field, until 8 o'clock at night, in bringing up regiments, brigades, and batteries, cheering them on to action and in rallying them when driven back before the furious fire of the enemy.

Shortly after sunset my own brigade had entirely exhausted their ammunition, and it being considered unsafe to bring forward the ammunition wagons where the enemy's shells were constantly flying and exploding, and the enemy having entirely ceased their efforts to break through this part of the line and had thrown the weight of their attack still farther to my left, I ordered my brigade back some one half of a mile to replenish their ammunition boxes and there await further orders. I remained on the field with Lieutenants Este and Niles, my own [aides] having been sent to see to my regiments.

The enemy continued their attacks upon our left until long after