charges. At this moment one regiment of the enemy, with colors displayed, crowned the hill on our left and commenced firing on us. I ordered a fire to the left in response, and was going through the line pointing out the proper direction for the fire, when Adjutant Perot, of my regiment, came to me and said by Colonel Barnes' order I was to withdraw the regiment and retreat in good order, our right and left flanks being both turned. Our only way of retreat was over the bluff, and it was very precipitous. I sent word along the line to fall back, get into the road, and retreat across the river. On getting on the road under the bluff, we were immediately fired on by the enemy from the summit, with great effect.
The regiment crossed at the dam opposite the ferry under a galling fire of the enemy, and reformed about 2 p. m. in the same camp vacated in the morning.
The loss on this first essay of the regiment in killed, wounded, and missing was 277.* I have furnished a detailed list of the casualties, to which I have the honor to refer you.
I am, sir, most respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant Colonel, Commanding 118th Pennsylvania Volunteers.
Lieutenant W. S. DAVIS.
A. D. C. and A. A. A. General First Brigadier Morrell's Div., Porter's Fifth Army Corps.
Numbers 90. Report of Brigadier General Charles Griffin, U. S. Army, commanding Second Brigade, First Division, of operations September 17-27, including skirmish at Blackford's Ford.
HEADQUARTERS SECOND BRIGADE,
October 6, 1862.
SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of the Second Brigade, in compliance with the above order:
On the 17th the brigade was not in action. About 4 p. m. an order was received from Major-General Porter to move to the support of General Franklin's command. The brigade moved about half a mile to the right, where it was halted, together with the Third Brigade, same division, by General McClellan, with directions to remain there until further orders, and returned to the position occupied in the morning, just before sunset, by direction of the general commanding, and encamped for the night.
On the morning of the 18th the brigade moved and occupied a position in rear of General Burnside's forces, where it remained until the morning of the 19th, when in took up its march in the direction of Shepherdstown, arriving in position near that place about 1 o'clock p. m. The enemy occupying the opposite side of the river with artillery and sharpshooters, the Fourth Michigan Regiment was moved forward as skirmishers and to drive the enemy from the banks. Our artillery, having been massed, opened a sharp fire on the enemy's guns, causing him to abandon them. By direction of Major-General Porter, the Fourth Michigan was ordered to cross the river and take them. This
* But see revised statement, p. 204.