general of the brigade, I directed him to go to General French, and report to him that, as new troops had come up and my brigade was out of ammunition, I would endeavor to reform it on the right under cover and await ammunition, and at the same time order bayonets fixed to resist a flank movement of the enemy. Later in the day I dispatched Lieutenant Swigart, aide-de-camp, with a report to General French. I regret to say that he received a painful, although not a severe, wound while executing this duty.
Another brigade having taken a position on the right, such portions of our shattered regiments as had been collected were withdrawn to the suburbs of the town at about 4.30 p.m., having remained on the field without ammunition for more than two hours. I then learned that the brigade had been ordered to reform near the hospital on the street, at which point the brigade bivouacked for the night.
The whole command behaved nobly. Colonel Wisewell, Twenty-eighth New Jersey; Lieutenant-Colonels Sawyer, Eighth Ohio, Lockwood, Seventh West Virginia, and Godman, Fourth Ohio; Major Winslow, Eighth Ohio, and Captains Grubb and Jones, Fourth Ohio, came under my immediate notice, doing all that men could do in the discharge of their respective duties. To Captain Mason, assistant adjutant-general, and Lieutenant Swigart, aide-de-camp to General Kimball and Lieutenant Lester, Fourth Ohio, acting adjutant, I am indebted for their valuable assistance on the field. Lieutenant Lester was particularly conspicuous for his coolness and daring. Major Cavins, Fourteenth Indiana; Lieutenant John Burrill, aide-de-camp to General Kimball; Captain Stewart, Fourth Ohio, and Lieutenant Bailey, adjutant Fourteenth Indiana, did efficient service on the left of our line.
A list of the killed and wounded has already been forwarded.*
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JNumbers S. MASON,
Colonel Fourth Ohio Vols., Commanding First Brigadier, French's Div.
Lieutenant J. W. PLUME,
Aide-de-camp and Assistant Adjutant-General.
No. 95. Report of Major Elijah H. C. Cavins, Fourteenth Indiana Infantry.
CAMP NEAR FALMOUTH, VA., December 19, 1862.
SIR: I have the honor to submit to you the following report of the engagement with the enemy at Fredericksburg, Va., from the 10th to the 15th instant:
Pursuant to orders of General Nathan Kimball, on the 10th instant, I had the regiment under my command put in proper fighting trim and ready to move at moment's warning. I formed the regiment in line at 6 a.m. on the 11th instant, and at 6.30 a.m. took my place on the left of the brigade and marched toward Fredericksburg. The command was halted under cover of the hill northeast of Fredericksburg, and remained there until 3.30 p.m., at which time we marched over the hill toward the upper pontoon bridge, across the Rappahannock. At 4.30
*Embodied in revised statement, p.131.