your brigade. At one time during this part of the engagement the fire of the enemy was so terribly, destructive it seemed that our little force would be entirely annihilated.
After the fight had raged for about two hours without any perceptible advantage to either side, some of our forces (I have never learned whose) came up on our left in a piece of woods on the left of the corn field, and opened and enfilanding fire upon the enemy. This fire and ours anther front soon proved too hard for them. They broke and fled, in utter confusion, into a piece of woods on the right. We were then ordered to fix bayonets and advance, which was promptly done. Advancing through the corn-field, we changed front to the right by throwing our left forward. We had advanced over the larger portion of the ground when we were ordered to halt. I soon discovered that General Summer's corps had arrived and were fresh, not yet having been in the action, and the work
of dislodging the enemy from the woods, designed for your shattered brigade,had been assigned to them.
At a later hour in the day my regiment and the Third Wisconsin were ordered to advance nearly over the same ground to the support of the Second Massachusetts, Thirteenth New Jersey, and One hundred and seventh New York who had been posted in or near the woods held by the rebels, to the rear of the corn-field. We promptly advanced nearly to the woods, but before we could get there our forces had been cut up and had fallen back. The two regiments held their position until the enemy had been driven back by a well directed shower of grape, and canister from one of our batteries, after which we took up a position in rear and in support of the batteries.
The Twenty-seventh Regiment, as well as the balance of your brigade of your brigade, was under arms from before sunrise until after dark, and although the main part of the fighting they were engaged in occurred in the fore part of the day, yet during the whole day they were frequently exposed to heavy fire from the enemy's artillery. At night I was temporarily, by you, place in command of the brigade, and the whole brigade marched to the front and nears the front and nearest the enemy in support of our batteries in front. Although our men had gone into the fight without breakfast and had fought all day, they performed this arduous duty at night, not only without grumbling but with cheerfulness.
Subsequent events of the day have disclosed to us that the troops your brigade so bravely fought and conquered at the battle of Antietam were the same troops you fought at Winchester on the 25th of May last- Ewell's old division, eight regiments-Louisiana, Georgia and South Carolina regiments. I am proud to be able to report to you that I believe every officer and man of my regiment who went into the fight with me did his whole duty. I saw no man or officer who took a backward step during the whole day unless ordered to do so.
I went into the fight with 443, rank and file. My loss in action was, in killed 17, in wounded, 192. Most of the wounds are slight, may, however, severe, and mortal. Quite a number of the wounds amputations have been necessary. Twelve deaths among the wounded have been reported to me. A list of killed and wounded is herewith submitted.* Your obedient servant,
Colonel Twenty-seventh Regiment Indiana Volunteers.
Brigadier General GEORGE H. GORDON,
Commanding 3rd Brigadier, 1st Div., Bank's Corps, Army of the Potomac.
*Embodied in revised statement, p. 198.