Numbers 167. Report of Brigadier General Samuel W. Crawford, U. S. Army, commanding First Division, of the battle of Antietam.
CHAMBERSBURG, PA., October 21, 1862.
GENERAL: The condition of my health, consequent upon the wound I received at the battle of Antietam on the 17th of September last, has prevented the transmission of an earlier report of the part taken my command in that action. Upon the assigned of General Mansfield to the command of the corps (Twelfth), on the 14th of September, I resumed the command of the First Brigade, of your division (First). My command consisted of the following regiments: Forty-sixth Pennsylvania, Colonel J. F. Knipe; Tenth Maine, Colonel G. L. Beal; Fifth ;Connecticut, Captain H. W. Daboll; Twenty-eighty New York, Captain W. H. H. Mapes commanding; One hundred and twenty-fourth Pennsylvania, Colonel J. W. Hawley commanding; One hundred and twenty-fifth Pennsylvania, Colonel J. Higgins; One hundred and twenty-eighth Pennsylvania, Colonel S. Croasdale. The last three mentioned regiments were new organizations from the nine months' levy, and had seen no field service whatever. The Fifth Connecticut was not in action.
On the night of the of September, while lying massed with the army on the Antietam, orders were received to proceed by the Hagerstown and Sharpsburg road toward the position occupied by the corps of Major-General Hooker, which had been engaged with the enemy. My brigade led the march of the corps, when, leaving the main road, before daylight we took up a position on Poeffenberger's farm, to the rear and left of General Hooker's force. At early dawn on the 17th my command was moved forward in column of companies still leading the corps. Passing through strips of woods, and open ground and cornfields, we were suddenly halted, and a deployment ordered without delay. While in the act of executing the order I received orders from General Mansfield, in person, to suspend the deployment and again to mass my command, the command was then exposed to an artillery fire. A third to again deploy was brought to me by one of officers of the division staff, and I at once deployed, my command being on the right of the line, which rested on a turnpike, and moved forward thought the woods, and open space, driving before us a thin line of the enemy's skirmishers. The new regiments from Pennsylvania (One hundred and twenty-fourth, One hundred and twenty-fifth, and One hundred and twenty-eighth) moved with great promptness and with the coolness of old troops, although they had not before been under fire. During this movement the One hundred and twenty-fourth Pennsylvania, Colonel Hawley, was detached from my brigade by some superior order unknown to me, and sent advance through the woods on our right to Miller's farm, to hold that position.
The struggle for the skirt of the woods to which the enemy clung, and the open space and corn-fields opposite and along the turnpike on the right, was long and determined. Finally the enemy was driven out of the woods across the fields, and into the opposite woods beyond the rocky ridges, to his supports. There he rallied, and bringing up fresh troops, our lines were exposed not only to a severe fire of his infantry, but also to an effective of his artillery on our right. While engaged in the struggle for the corn-field, Colonel Croasdale, of the One hundred and twenty-eighth Pennsylvania, was killed, and Lieutenant-Colo