War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0290 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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during part of the day the ground upon which the battle had been fought by General King. We found some of his wounded, who were cared for by your direction. In afternoon the enemy appeared to be endeavoring to pass around our left and we were marched to our left and rear, and late in the evening were withdrawn to a position a short distance in advance of the one we had occupied in the morning. Although frequently under the fire of the enemy's artillery we had no opportunity to use our small-arms, and had but 2 men wounded. After dark an attempt was made upon our lines by the enemy, and a portion of the night was spent under arms. We remained in our position on the 30th until about 4 o'clock in the afternoon, when your brigade was ordered to take up a position on a bald hill to our left, to support General Reynolds. You placed your battery in position and your brigade as follows: The Seventy-fifth on the right of the battery in line; the Twenty-fifth and Seventy-third in line of the left of the battery.

A short time after we had taken, our position the troops on our left marched past us by the right flank and in our front and disappeared to our right. The enemy soon made their appearance in front, driving before them a regiment of Zouaves. You opened upon them as soon as they came within range with grape and canister, and the infantry soon afterward. They were driven back by our fire in considerable confusion and unquestionably heavy loss. They then made their appearance directly in front of the Seventy-third in the edge of the woods, but were again driven back by our fire. Our men were in high spirits, feeling confident ability to maintain their position, when a large force of the enemy were perceived on our left and rear, with artillery, advancing rapidly. They opened upon us at the same time with grape and canister and infantry. In a short time the regiments on my left, under a most terrific fire, gave way. Shortly after an order was given to change front, which I attempted to execute, but the fire was so terrific and the noise of the battle so great that it was impossible to be heard or do anything without confusion. We were forced from our position, and retired to the woods in our rear in disorder. My men behaved well, indeed gallantly, but by some miserable blundering we were left unprotected on our left, and then came the murderous assault on three sides of us, which resulted as I have stated.

I wish to state, before closing this report, that the constant marching, both by day and night, for the last twelve days previous to the 30th, had reduced my number of effective men to 230 on the day of the battle, and many of those who remained were barefooted and all of them much exhausted. I further desire to protest against what I consider the injustice done to the troops of Sigel's corps by a published report of Major-General Pope. From the 26th to the 31st of August some portion of our corps was engaged every day, often fiercely. Our marches have been extraordinary and our losses great, yet we have been totally ignored in that report. I am also to state that the officers and men of my regiment have every confidence in the ability, bravery, and patriotism of the commanding general of this corps, and fully believe that no part of the disaster at Bull Run was produced by any act, neglect, or omission of his, but, on the other hand, that if he had had the control of the army it would not have happened.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. P. RICHARDSON,

Colonel Twenty-fifth Regiment O. V. Infantry.

Colonel N. C. McLEAN, Commanding Second Brigade, First Division.