War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0027 Chapter XXX. DEMONSTRATION ON NEW BERNE, N. C.

Search Civil War Official Records

Only two of my command were slightly wounded, one in the face and another in the left hand. I desire to call attention particularly to the coolness and bravery of Lieutenant Drennan and the men under his command, who twice drove back an overpowering force of the enemy and held them in check for nearly or quite an hour and a half. I think the advance of the enemy would have ben disastrous to us had it not been for the brave conduct of Lieutenant Drennan.

All the officers and men of my command behaved themselves gallantry under fire.

Respectfully, yours,


Captain, 25th Massachusetts, Commanding Detachment.


Third New York Cavalry, Commanding Post.


Received November 15, 1862, 10 a. m., and approved. Forwarded to Colonel Amory, Seventeenth Massachusetts.


Captain, Commanding Outpost.

Numbers 3. Report of Lieutenant James M. Drennan, Twenty-fifth Massachusetts Infantry.

CAMP HARKNESS, November -, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to report that on Tuesday morning I caused to be detailed by your orders from the three companies in this camp a force of 50 men, 3 corporals, and 3 sergeants, with Lieutenant Tew, and started on a foraging expedition, traveling as near as possible the route indicated by you.

We met with little success until we arrived near the red house, where we came onto cattle and swine. We soon shot down and dressed what we wanted and started for camp, taking the road nearest to Deep Gully. Being in the enemy's lines we advanced with caution. Soon, or about 3 o'clock p. m., my advance guard reported a force of cavalry, which I discovered as the enemy's. I deployed part of my commands as skirmishers in the woods, on both sides of the road, with the remainder under Lieutenant Tew as a reserve, and advanced immediately on the place we last saw them. I gave orders not to fire unless fired on. As we came out on the Trent road the enemy were leaving the house at the grapevine, near the gully, and made all speed for the latter place. I did not deem it prudent to follow them, for many reasons, but started for camp, throwing out an advance and rear guard. After stopping about fifteen or twenty minutes to rest about 1 miles this side, we resumed our march for camp, and had barely time to get inside our vedettes when they attacked in force, driving in the outpost.

I immediately ordered our wagons to camp, and with 6 men went to the front to give them check. My men labored under the disadvantage of having the bright sun on their eyes and on their pieces, but we drove them from the open field into the woods. They rallied. I sent for the remainder of the first platoon and deployed them as skirmishers. A