Brigade, to be posted by him but was not engaged with the enemy during the day. On the 17th I was ordered by General Sykes to report to General Pleasonton, by whom I was directed to relieve Captain Robertson's battery (B and L, Second Artillery), which was in position in advance of the Antietam Creek and on the left of the Sharpsburg road. As soon as possible I opened a fire of spherical case on the flank of one of the enemy's batteries, which, after a few rounds, retired to a position beyond the range of my guns. Being somewhat annoyed by the sharpshooters of the enemy, a portion of the Second Infantry was deployed as skirmishers in advance of the battery and drove them beyond range. As my position was an unfavorable one for the use of artillery, on account of the nature of the ground and its proximity to a large corn-field and other cover, by means of which the enemy could approach to within a very short range unperceived, and as none of the enemy except pickets were visible, I reported for further orders to General Pleasonton, and was ordered to return to my former position, where I remained till the close of the engagement.
On the 19th one gun of my battery was engaged for a short time at Shepherdstown Ford, and on the 20th the whole was placed in position near the ford, but was not regularly engaged.
I lost neither men nor material during the various actions.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
A. M. RANDOL,
First Lieutenant First Artillery, Commanding Battery.
Captain S. H. WEED,
Fifth Artillery, Chief of Artillery, Sykes' Division.
No. 93. Report of Captain Stephen H. Weed, Battery I, Fifth U. S. Artillery, of the battle of Antietam, skirmish at Blackford's or Boteler's Ford, and action near Shepherdstown.
FORD OF THE POTOMAC NEAR SHEPHERDSTOWN, September 25, 1862.
SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the services of my battery since the 15th instant:
On the evening of that date one section, under command of Lieutenant Watson, was in position to dislodge the advance skirmishers of the enemy from the corn-field and wood on the height occupied by us the next morning. On the 16th the battery was planted on a prominent height near the center of our line, where it remained until the morning of the 19th. Four 20-pounder Parrott guns, commanded by Lieutenant Wever, were also placed under my orders by the chief of artillery, and remained until I left. Some good practice was made by those guns. On the 16th and during the battle of the 17th the batteries under my command had several opportunities, which were improved, of opening with effect upon the artillery and infantry of the enemy at ranges varying from 1,200 to 2,500 yards. Nothing but case-shot was at any time fired from my own guns.
On the 19th my battery was in position near the ford, and engaged and silenced at least four guns opposed to it. It is believed that one or two of these guns were abandoned by the enemy and taken by some of our people the next day. It is a matter of slight consequence.
23 R R-VOL XIX, PT I