over 800. The larger portion of this number is believed to be prisoners, as we were flanked on both the right and the left by the enemy, and, thus surrounded, our men were compelled to surrender. For the most successful rally made on the retreat from the crest of the mountain I was indebted to a section of the Troup Artillery, under Lieutenant [Henry] Jennings. They had been ordered forward, and had reached a point where, under the terrific fire of the enemy, their pieces were placed in position, and, by their prompt and rapid firing, checked for a time the advance of the enemy. One of the pieces was brought off safely; the other was lost by an accident to the axle. When I reached the gap I found both Colonel Munford and Colonel Parham active and energetic in the discharge of their duty, which continued to the end of the fight. Shortly after the lines were broken, and I was endeavoring to rally the troops, General Semmes appeared on the field, and, at great exposure and with great coolness and courage, gave me his cordial aid and co-operation. All of the members of my staff were on the field, and did all that could be done under the circumstances. One of them, Colonel John B. Lamar, of Georgia, volunteer aide, whilst near my side, earnestly rallying the men, received a mortal wound, of which he died the next day. No nobler nor braver man has fallen in this war. There were many other acts of personal courage which circumstances prevent me from mentioning at present. The remnant of my brigade marched with the rest of your division from Harper's Ferry, and was engaged in the battle of the 17th, at Sharpsburg. I was necessarily absent for two days from the command, and reached, in the morning after the battle, and the present absence of the officer then in command of this brigade prevents a report at this time of that day's operation.
Accompanying this report is a list of the killed, wounded, and missing, made out with as much accuracy as practicable under existing circumstances.*
I am, very respectfully, yours, &c.,
Numbers 223. Report of Lieutenant Colonel William MacRae, Fifteenth North Carolina Infantry, commanding Cobb's brigade, of the battle of Sharpsburg.
SEPTEMBER 23, 1862.
SIR: In compliance with your order, I herewith transmit a statement of the action of your brigade in the battle of Sharpsburg, of the 17th instant:
General McLaws' division, after marching all the previous night, was ordered, about 8 a. m., to take position on the left, your brigade, numbering 357 men, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Sanders, Twenty-fourth Georgia, in front. In about half an hour we arrived in front of the enemy and in range of his musketry, when the head of the brigade was ordered to file right when the rear had filled. General McLaws commanded us to march by the left flank. Colonel Sanders, being in front, did not hear the order, but marched on and joined the left of General Rodes' command. (I will here state that we were thus separated from the division, and did not join it until the next morning.) We halted and took position behind a fence, covered from the enemy's musketry
*Embodied in tabular statement, p. 861.