War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0418 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXI.

Search Civil War Official Records

tions, and were ready on the following morning for and advance on the enemy, who had retreated in the direction of Sharpsburg during the night.

For the details of the movement I respectfully refer the general commanding to the reports of the division, brigade, regimental, and battery commanders.

From Generals Reno and Hooker I have received no reports, the former having been killed during the action, and the latter severely wounded three days after at the battle of Antietam. To these two gallant generals, with the officers and soldiers under their commands, the country is indebted for this day's victory, in achieving which many gallant men were lost to our cause.

I will not attempt ;in a public report to express the deep sorrow which the death of the gallant Reno caused me. A long and intimate acquaintance, an extended service on the same field, and an intimate knowledge of his high and noble character had endeared him to me, as well as to all with whom he had served. No more valuable life than his has been lost during this contest for our country's preservation.

Our loss during this engagement was 312 killed, 1,234 wounded, and 22 missing, among whom were some of our most valuable officers and men.* The losses of the enemy far exceeded our own in killed, and probably in wounded, and we captured 1,500 prisoners. Their force present was probably not as large as our own, but they were posted in strong positions-behind stone fences, in thick woods, on the tops of crests, and in ravines.

A topographical survey is being made, which will show the nature of the country and the disposition of the troops, and I feel sure that history will demonstrate this to have been one of the many brilliant engagements of the war.

On the morning of the 15th instant General Hooker's corps was temporarily detached by the general commanding and ordered in pursuit of the enemy by way of Boonsborough, and I was ordered in pursuit with the remainder of the command by the Sharpsburg road, reaching about sundown the neighborhood of Sharpsburg, where the enemy was found to be in position on the extreme left, under the crest of the mountain opposite the middle Antietam Bridge.

On the next day (16th) I was ordered by the general commanding to place our batteries on the crests of the hills near the bridge, the infantry being moved forward in support, and the commands were immediately placed in their proper positions.

The accompanying maps will give accurately the positions taken at this time, as well as the successive positions, which avoids the necessity of a more detailed description.+

General Cox was still retained in temporary command of the Ninth Army Corps, which was the only portion of my command then with me, and my orders were to a great extent given directly to him, and I would respectfully refer the general commanding to his very excellent and minute report. The distribution of the forces was as follows: On the crest of the hill immediately in front of the bridge was Benjamin's battery of six 20-pounders, with the remaining batteries in rear of the crest under partial cover; in rear of Benjamin's battery on the extreme right, joining on to General Sykes' division, was General Crook's brigade, with General sturgis' division in his rear; on the left, and in rear of


*But see revised statement, p. 187.

+To appear in Atlas.