War of the Rebellion: Serial 016 Page 0483 Chapter XXIV. CAMPAIGN IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA.

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that direction, and maintained a gallant and bloody conflict with the foe until, outnumbered, outflanked, and badly crippled, I directed him to retire. Chapman, thrown in previous to Buchanan, fighting desperately for three-quarters of an hour, seriously cut up and fired into by volunteers behind him, was also ordered to retire. This was directed only after a regiment of volunteers on his right and one on his left had fallen back, exposing both his flanks, while a New York battery to the right of him cleared out just when its services were most necessary. The remains of my command were then united on the plateau. My artillery joined me near this position.

Captain J. R. Smead, Fifth Artillery, was unfortunately killed in bringing off his guns. From the nature of the fight he and Randol had little opportunity do display the skill they had previously acquired in handling their batteries. Weed was in action throughout the day, and strengthened the reputation he had already acquired. He had the misfortune to lose two of his guns by the breaking of their axles. They were abandoned on the road from the battle-field to Centreville-not taken from him by the enemy.

After my command reunited I received orders to move on Centreville, and reached there at midnight intact and in excellent order. The following morning a position was assigned me among the old rifle pits of the rebels, which I held for thirty-six hours. At 1 a. ml. on the 2nd of September we moved to Fairfax, thence to Flint Hill, thence to our present camp.

I desire to call the attention of the major-general commanding to the services of Colonels Warren, Buchanan, and Chapman, U. S. Army, commanding brigades of my division. Their coolness, courage, and example were conspicuous. Their claim to promotion has been earned on fields of battle long prior to that of the 30th of August, 1862. Had the efforts of these officers, those of Generals Reynolds, Reno, and Butterfield, been properly sustained, it is doubtful if the day had gone against us. Warren's command was sacrificed by the withdrawal of Reynolds' troops from my left and their non-replacement by others. The enemy masked and concealed his brigades in the forests south of the Warrenton pike. His presence was unseen and unknown until he appeared in sufficient strength to overpower the infantry opposed to him. In fighting an offensive battle, we left behind us a position (the old battle ground) that offered reasonable hopes of success, and in the pursuit of a supposed retreating foe we encountered a well-posed army, flushed by victory, confident, calmly awaiting the attack he most desired.

The reports of brigade, battalion, and artillery commanders are inclosed. I respectfully refer to them for the minuter operations of the day, and cordially unite in the recommendations given in them to officers and men. It will be seen that my troops behaved with the utmost coolness and bravery (known to the general himself); were exposed for many hours to a severe artillery fire without the power of evading it, and when eventually led into battle acted as well as troops ever do. Their conduct left me nothing to desire. It was their misfortune not to be supported, and no fault of theirs that they were compelled to join in the general retreat.

To revert to cases of individual merit, Major C. S. Lovell, Tenth Infantry, commanding Second U. S. Infantry, is particularly mentioned for his conduct on this occasion. I desire to add my personal testimony to the major's known gallantry, and to bespeak for him the advancement he so richly deserves.