eral F. Unaware, however, of the difficulties incident to the rupture and readjustment of recent battalion organizations, he may not quite fully appreciate the importance of not permanently weakening a battalion as such. To encourage these efficient young battalion commanders seems practically wise. The other points mentioned by Major D. are attended to.
W. N. P.
Numbers 28. Report of Captain Robert M. Stribling, Fauquier Artillery, of the capture of Battery Huger, April 19.
PETERSBURG, VA., May 6, 1863.
GENERAL: In reply to your request of this morning I have the honor of making the following report of the capture of my battery on the Nansemond River on the evening of April 19:
About 11 p. m., April 16, my battery was placed in position in the old fort on Hill's Point by Major Shumaker, chief of artillery, with orders from him to fire upon any boats running up or down the river that might attempt to pass the fort, and to fire under no other circumstances except when the fire would be undoubtedly with effect, but to keep the men under cover as well as possible. Lieutenant-Colonel Coleman, of General Law's brigade, was in the fort with some infantry when I went into position. The next morning the enemy opened upon the fort from gunboats below and above, and also from a land battery upon the opposite shore. About 11 a. m. three boats attempted to run by the fort - one ran aground about 600 yards below,k and only through it. Toward sunset the boat which had been aground got off and passed by; we made seven holes through her, and I understood permanently disabled her. Saturday was a day of comparative quiet, no shots of any consequence being fired at the fort and we not firing at all.
Early Sunday morning firing commenced from the gunboats and about 1 p. m. became quite furious and continued so until between sundown and dark, when, upon a signal, all firing ceased, and immediately one of the boats above ran near the shore and rapidly landed two or more regiments about 400 yards above the fort. They double-quicked by the flank across the neck of land, thereby cutting off all communication. They then faced to the front, discharged their pieces, and charged upon the fort. The pieces which had been turned toward the land and the infantry supports (two companies, numbering about 60 men, and commanded by Captain Bozeman, of Forty-fourth Alabama Regiment, General Law's brigade) opened upon them and held them in check. They soon, however, flanked the fort on either side and entered it through a swamp and over the parapets on the river side and in rear of guns. We were hastened off with the greatest rapidity and put on board the boat.
About 2 o'clock on the night of the 16th the pickets stationed up the river fell back to the fort, reporting that the enemy had landed in large force above. Notice was immediately sent through one of my sergeants to General Law. In the mean time Lieutenant-Colonel Coleman advanced his skirmishers up the river and found no enemy at the points