good execution, until ordered to retire with remainder of the brigade, which we did in good ordered,and halted in our former position by the railroad, where we remained until dark, when we were ordered to recross the pontoon bridge and bring over all our wounded, which we accomplished successfully,and encamped for the night on the ground occupied by us on the night of the 11th instant.
On the morning of the 14th instant, we recrossed the river by the lower pontoon bridge, and occupied the position held by us on the 12th instant. Here ammunition was distributed to the men sufficient to make up the original complement of 60 rounds per man.
We remainder in this place until the night of the 15th instant, when, with the remainder of the troops, we evacuated the city under cover of the darkness, crossing by the upper pontoon bridge, and marched directly to our camping grounds, near Falmouth, Va., occupied by us previous to the morning of the 11th instant.
In justice to the brave men who have fallen, I cannot refrain from bearing testimony to their gallant conduct, and I have also to express my gratification at the behavior of the whole regiment throughout the action.
The number of casualties incurred by the regiment was as follows: Killed, 11; wounded, 116; missing, 30; total, 157.*
I have the honor to be, sir, your most obedient servant,
Lieutenant JOHN J. BLAKE,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
No. 65. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Richard C. Bentley, Sixty-third New York Infantry.
CAMP NEAR FALMOUTH, VA., December 21, 1862.
In compliance with circular of this date, I have the honor to report that at midnight of the 10th instant I was called by a messenger, and, immediately waiting upon Brigadier-General Meagher, was directed to cause reveille to be sounded at 4 a.m. of the 11th, and be ready to move in light marching order, with three days' rations, at 6.30 o'clock.
Accordingly my command was prepared as directed. I had not since my return from the North (whither I went wounded from the battle of Antietam) been able to mount or perform more than executive and ordinary camp duties. Reported the command at brigade headquarters, and, by the advice of my surgeon, myself as unable to accompany them, and, by direction, yielded the command to Major Joseph O'Neill.
Leaving camp, the regiment proceeded to the heights near Phillips house, remaining until evening; then, falling to the rear a short distance, bivouacked for the night.
In the morning (Friday) resumed the position of the day before, and at about 9 a.m. proceeded to cross the Rappahannock, and, moving along the river bank to the lower end of the city of Fredericksburg, rested on arms until the morning, then taking position in an adjoining street within the town. Here line of battle was formed with 48 files
*But see revised statement, p.129.