War of the Rebellion: Serial 027 Page 0995 Chapter XXXI. THE MARYLAND CAMPAIGN.

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[Inclosure.]

Statement of the strength of First South Carolina Rifles in the battle of Sharpsburg September 17.

Field and staff.............................................. 3

Officers..................................................... 8

Privates and non-commissioned officers....................... 183

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Total........................................................ 194

JAS. M. PERRIN,

Lieutenant-Colonel First South Carolina Rifles.

GREGG'S BRIGADE, LIGHT DIVISION,

September 30, 1862.

COLONEL: In obedience to your orders, I herewith submit the following report of the part taken by the First South Carolina Rifles, under my command, in the battle of Shepherdstown, on September 20:

In the line of battle, the First South Carolina Rifles formed on the right of the brigade. Before advancing, by order of General Gregg, I detached four companies from the regiment to cover the front of the brigade, as skirmishers. This force I placed under the immediate command of Captain [W. M.] Hadden, of Company A. He deployed his line and advanced, soon engaging and driving in the enemy's line of pickets, after a sharp encounter. The firing along our line of skirmishers becoming continuous, I was ordered to advance the remaining six companies of my command to a position from which I could support my skirmishers, should they need aid. I advanced my line down the road leading to the ford, moving by the left flank, under a very heavy fire from the enemy's batteries on the opposite side of the river. This fire became so severe, as a matter of safety I found it necessary to deploy the regiment at short intervals to the right and left of the road, advancing in this order until I could communicate with Captain Hadden, who was keeping up a continuous fire in my front. This advance was made in fine style and good order, under the most trying fire of shell and shot I have ever experienced. I found that Captain Hadden had secured a most eligible position, commanding the field over which the enemy were attempting to cross to the Maryland side, having been routed by our forces on our left. The fire of our skirmishers must have been very destructive, as they were within easy range, and fired at a confused mass hurrying across the river to a place of safety. Some of the men in this engagement fired as many as 25 rounds. The enemy, by his artillery and sharpshooters, attempted to drive in our skirmishers and control the ford. The effort, however, proved ineffectual.

In the afternoon, General Gregg, in person and alone, made a reconnaissance of the enemy's position, passing down the road very near to the ford. Having discovered the enemy still escaping in squads across the river, he directed Captain Hadden to take position with a part of his force, still nearer the ford, and in obedience to his order, I directed Captain Miller to advance four companies farther down the road to the right, in order to protect him. Both of these orders were executed promptly and with spirit. The positions had only been taken when we were relieved by a company of cavalry acting as infantry, and our forces ordered to return. I led the regiment out in safety, it having, through the whole day, most wonderfully escaped from the many shells that exploded all around us.