and shoes. We arrived at our present encampment November 22. Clothing to nearly supply my command arrived on the evening of December 2.
The morning of the 3d, I received orders to report to General Woodbury,commanding, Engineer Brigade, for fatigue duty, with four days' rations. We moved down the river about 7 miles. Here, with the assistance of the One hundred and twentieth New York Regiment, we cut and loaded three hundred teams with timber for corduroy or bridging.
The evening of the 8th, I received orders from General Woodbury to have the teams in readiness to move the next morning. My instructions were to move 10 miles down the river with my command (the One hundred and twentieth New York Regiment) and the three hundred teams; construct a corduroy 24 feet wide across a swamp 1,100 feet,and grade the approach to the same 200 feet; an officer of his staff would accompany me as guide; the work to be done on the night of the 9th, and we to return as much unobserved by the enemy as possible.
On the morning of the 9th, we moved as directed, and arrived within 7 1/2 miles of our destination at 3.30 p.m. and waited for night to conceal us. At 4 p.m. I received orders to pack the teams, provide three days' rations for men and beasts, and await further orders. I immediately sent for rations, shelter tents, and blankets for the men, which arrived the next morning. The night was cold, we suffered much from exposure. The day was occupied in preparing quarters.
At 4.30 p.m. of the 10th, I received orders to complete the work that night. By the exertions of Lieutenant-Colonel Carver, the teams were put in motion, and at 9 o'clock p.m. they were all unloaded and had retired. At 4 o'clock on the morning of the 11th, the work was completed, and I had received orders to join my brigade. I arrived at the encampment which we left on the morning of the 9th, at 12 m.
My men being nearly exhausted, I resolved to remain here until the next morning, but, upon visiting the quartermaster, I ascertained that he had a second order for me to join the brigade immediately. Upon this I thought best to report without my command, and started for that purpose; but had proceeded but a short distance when I met one of the general's aides with special orders to join the brigade without delay. This order (the first one since being in the service) I was tempted to disobey. I returned to my fatigued command, where I remained until 3.30 p.m.,at which time we moved, leaving 36 men, who were completely worn out by fatigue. The day had been warm and the roads were very muddy. The brigade had moved and I was unable to find them. Night coming on, we were obliged to spend it without shelter or fires,as no fuel was to be had about our location.
The morning of the 12th, I joined the brigade, with 22 officers and 253 men. One officer and 30 men were immediately detailed to report to Professor Lowe, the balloonist. At 4.30 p.m. we were on the move, and bivouacked at 11 p.m. At 5 o'clock on the morning of the 13th, we were again in motion, and crossed the river between 9 and 10 a.m. Moving to the left and front about 2 miles, we found ourselves in a place where shot and shell were falling thick and fast. Here the men relieved themselves of knapsacks. Of the 21 officers and 213 men who had crossed the river, 13 men had been detailed as brigade guard and 10 (the pioneers) to guard the knapsacks, leaving but 21 officers and 190 men to go into action. My position was assigned in rear of a battery as a support,where I remained about thirty minutes, losing 2 men killed by the explosion of a shell in our ranks from a rebel gun.
At this time I received orders to follow the Thirty-eighth and Fortieth New York Regiments, which were about to charge and take possession