War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0378 OPERATIONS IN N.VA., W.VA., AND MD. Chapter XXIV.

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Meredith, and Gibbon's battery, Fourth Artillery, Captain J. B. Campbell. Hatch's artillery was engaging the enemy in front, when from a point to his left and rear one of the enemy's battery opened on my column. I directed the men to lie down in the road, and ordered up Captain Campbell with the battery. It came up at a gallop, formed in battery under a heavy fire, and opened with such vigor that the enemy's battery was soon silenced and made to retire. In the mean time I found that two of the enemy's pieces had been plated to our left and rear and were firing on Doubleday's brigade which was behind us. I had no information of the presence of an infantry force in that position, which was occupied by General Hatch in person not three-fourths of an hour before. I therefore supposed that this was one of the enemy's cavalry batteries, and ordered the Second Wisconsin to face to the left and march obliquely to the rear against these pieces to take them in flank. As it rose an intervening hill it was opened upon by some infantry on its right flank. The left wing was thrown forward to bring the regiment facing the enemy, and the musket firing became very warm. The Nineteenth Indiana was now ordered up in support and formed on the left of the Second Wisconsin, whilst the Seventh Wisconsin was directed to hold itself in reserve. As the enemy appeared to be now heavily re-enforced, the Sixth and Seventh Wisconsin were both ordered into line, and I sent repeated and earnest requests to division headquarters for assistance. Two of General Doubleday's regiments finally got into line and the fight was kept up vigorously until after dark, when finding that we were far outnumbered and outflanked, on the left where I at length lost all hope of getting help from Patrick's brigade, I ordered the line to fall back, which was done in good order. We however, occupied the ground with our pickets and collected the wounded.

From the best information I can gather it appears that these six regiments and the battery sustained for over an hour the fire of two of Ewell's brigades, commanded by Jackson in person.

Of the conduct of my brigade it is only necessary for me to state that it nobly maintained its position against heavy odds. The fearful list of killed and wounded tells the rest. The troops fought most of the time not more than 75 yards apart.

The total loss of the brigade is, killed, 133; wounded, 539; missing, 79. Total, 751, or considerably over one-third the command.

The gallant Colonel O'Connor, Second Wisconsin, fell mortally wounded whilst placing his regiment in position. His major (Allen) was wounded in two places, but kept the field. Colonel Cutler, Sixth Wisconsin, whilst bravely moving up to the assistance of his comrades, was badly wounded in the leg. Every field officer of the Seventh Wisconsin (Colonel Robinson, Lieutenant-Colonel Hamilton, and Major Bill) was wounded, the lieutenant-colonel remaining on the field and bringing off his regiment in the best possible manner. The major of the Nineteenth (May) fell mortally wounded whilst his regiment was sustaining a most destructive fire on the left of the line.

I refer to the reports of regimental commanders for individual cases of merit, and am much indebted to Captains Wood, Drum, and Mason and Lieutenant Haskell, of my staff, for their able assistance in bringing troops forward to our help.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JOHN GIBBON,

Brigadier-General, Commanding Brigade.

Captain R. CHANDLER,

Assistant Adjutant-General, King's Division.