War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0348 Chapter XXXI. OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA.

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officers and men on this occasion without appearing to overstate it. Finding themselves suddenly and unexpectedly attacked by a force so vastly superior, there was no sign of intimidation on the part of any one, and when the order to retire was given it was received with evident disappointment.

I have already submitted in detail the loss in killed, wounded, and missing, to which I beg leave to refer. A summary of the list shows as follows: 92 killed, 131 wounded, and 103 missing.

With much respect, your obedient servant,


Colonel, Commanding Brigade.


Assistant Adjutant-General.

Numbers 89. Report of Lieutenant Colonel James Gwyn, One hundred and eighteenth Pennsylvania Infantry, of action near Shepherdstown.


Camp near Sharpsburg, Md., September 30, 1862.

LIEUTENANT: In accordance with instructions, I have the honor to make the following report of this regiment in the action of Saturday, 20th instant:

Early on Saturday, 20th September, while in camp at this place, the regiment, under command of Colonel Provost, was ordered to be in readiness to march with the brigade, and, with entire force of officers and men of 737, at about 8 o'clock a. m. took up the line of march in rear of Thirteenth New York, down the ravine, and forded the Potomac River at Blackford's Ferry, when the column filed to the right, and after marching about 300 yards was halted, and about 9 o'clock a. m. the One hundred and eighteenth was ordered to file left up a ravine and form line of battle on the top of a bluff, and under cover, supported on the right by Thirteenth and twenty-fifth Regiments New York, and on the left by First Michigan, Twenty-second and Eighteenth Massachusetts, and Second Mine Regiments. Owing to the nature of the ground the regiment came in line in right by file. Seven companies only had got in line when firing was heard on our right flank, and on advancing in line to the crest of the hill, we found the enemy advancing in heavy force in front and on our left. Colonel Provost posted in person the three left companies to meet a flank movement of the enemy on a knoll on the left of the regiment, who became almost immediately engaged with the enemy; about the same time the right was fired on from a heavy force in front, and commenced by my orders to fire by file. Owing to the worthlessness of our pieces (condemned Enfield), not more than 50 percent. of which could be discharged, the line began to waver, when Colonel Provost advanced with the colors to the front, and was almost immediately severely wounded by a rifle shot from the enemy, and went to the rear.

The command now devolving upon me, and the enemy threatening us in front, I rallied, with the assistance of Major C. P. Herring, about 200 men, and charged over the slope of the hill in front, where a heavy fire was poured on us from the left. I fell back under the brow of the hill with my command, and reformed with the intention of repeating the