War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0322 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA. AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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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 ensanguined 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 having been sent to see to my regiments. The enemy continued their attacks upon our left until long after dark, which it required the most determined and energetic efforts to repel. At one time,not receiving assistance from the rear, as I had a right to expect after having sent for it, and our struggling battalions being nearly overcome by the weight and persistence of the enemy's attack, I flew back about one-half mile to where I understood General McDowell was with a large portion of his corps. I found him and appealed to him in the most urgent manner to send a brigade forward at once to save to day or all would be lost. He answered coldly, in substance, that it was not his business to help everybody, and he was not going to help General Sigel.* I hold him I was not fighting with General Sigel's Corps; that my brigade had got out of ammunition some time before and gone to the rear, and that I had been fighting with a half dozen different brigades, and that I had not inquired where or to what particular corps they belonged. He inquired of one of his aides if General


was fighting over there on the left; he answered he thought he was. McDowell replied that he would send him help, for he was a good fellow. He then gave the order for a brigade to start, which was all I desired. I dashed in front of them, waved my sword, and cheered them forward. They raised the cheer and came on at double-quick. I soon led them to where they were most needed, and the gallant manner in which they entered the fight and the rapidity of their fire soon turned the tide of battle. But this gallant brigade, like many others which had preceded it, found the enemy too strong as they advanced into the forest, and was forced back by the tremendous fire that met them. But one of General Burnside's veteran brigades, coming up soon after dark with a battery, again dashed back the tide of armed treason, and sent such a tempest of shot, shell, and leaden death into the dark forest after the rebels that they did not again renew the attack.

Perhaps some mighty cheering which I got our boys to send up about that time induced the rebels to believe that we had received such re-enforcements as to make any further meddling with our lines a rather


*See record of the McDowell Court of Inquiry in Part I.