War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0279 Chapter XXX. SIEGE OF SUFFOLK, VA.

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We have taken five pieces of the famous Fauquier Artillery, about 400 prisoners, some rifles, and camp equipage. Probably 500 or 600 have been killed and wounded and 500 have deserted, making a total loss of a least 1,500.

Our own killed is 44; wounded, 202, and missing, 14. Total, 260.* All the morale, prestige, and glory belong to the patient and brave officers and men of the Federal Army.

Besides these brilliant results, this command has held the masses of the enemy around Suffolk in order that General Hooker might secure the crowning victory of the war, and it is entitled to a share of the glory that may accrue to his arms. My thanks are due all officers and soldiers who have worked cheerfully and patriotically on these fortifications. They now see that their labors are not in vain.

The truth of history requires that i should state that a small portion of the One hundred and twelfth New York became homesick all discontented, and said that they came to fight and not to dig. This feeling was seized upon by politicians, and since the adjournment of the senate I have been advised that efforts were made to defeat my confirmation in consequence thereof. Soldiers who love their country will cheerfully perform any duty assigned them; men who know how to build fortifications will know how to defend or assault them. It should not be forgotten that the principal successes have been behind intrenchments, at Manassas, Fredericksburg, Richmond, Vicksburg, Charleston, &c.

It is an unpleasant duty to state that most of the Ninth New York, Colonel Hawkins, left this command on the 3rd, by expiration of their term of service, while their comrades were actively engaged with the enemy. It can be regarded only as an unfortunate termination of a hitherto brilliant career of service.

To General Corcoran, Terry, Dodge, and Harland, and Colonels Dutton and Gibbs, commanding fronts or lines; Colonels Spear and Onderdonk, of the cavalry; Colonels Gurney and Wardrop, commanding reserves, and Captain Follett, chief of artillery, I am under very great obligations for the able, faithful, judicious, and cheerful discharge of every duty incident to their important positions.

General Getty was instructed with the river line below the Onondaga Battery, the key of the position and about 8 miles ion length- a very difficult line to defend against an enterprising enemy acquainted with every by-path and guided by owners of the soil. his responsibilities were of the highest order, and the labors of his troops were incessant. Under his vigilant supervision everything was done that could be for the security of the right flank, and the enemy was foiled in all plans for crossing.

Colonel R. S. Foster, of Indiana commanding brigade and a portion of the front, added fresh laurels to the high reputation which he established West Virginia and on the Peninsula. He was at home in grand skirmishes, and the enemy always recoiled before him. General Gordon reported three days before the conclusion of the siege and was assigned to the command of the Reserve Division. His long and varied experience rendered his judgment of great value, and I regret that he has been called to another field.

My thanks are due General Viele, of Norfolk, for the prompt transmission of important intelligence and for the alacrity with which my calls were responded.


* But see revised statement, p. 288.