gade, this regiment formed with the brigade, on the morning of the 11th instant, and marched toward the Rappahannock, bivouacking for the night.
On the 12th instant, made a detour to the left, and bivouacked within 1 mile of the lower pontoon bridges..
On the 13th instant, crossed to the south side of the river, and advanced to the support of the troops then engaged with the enemy; formed line of battle in an open field, but the enemy shelling our position the brigade was formed in a sunken road a few paces in the rear, where we remained until the morning of the 15th instant, when I was ordered to relieve the First Massachusetts, in my front, and support the picket line. Up to this time the pickets had been firing at each other, but, through some arrangement of the pickets themselves, it ceased on this morning. Posting three companies in my front about 300 yards, which were relieved at intervals, I remained until I received information from General Revere, commanding brigade, that the army was about to recross the river, and orders to the effect that I should remain in support of the picket line until further instructions.
About 2 a.m. I received instructions from a staff officer of General Sickles to commence the movement, first withdrawing my regiment and afterward the pickets, silently. Through some mistake, I presume, the pickets on my right were withdrawn some twenty minutes before mine, and I was apprehensive of an attack from that direction. My pickets were removed without causing any alarm, and, throwing the regiment out as skirmishers, I marched to the bridges, crossing the river without the loss of a man.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
WILLIAM J. SEWELL,
Colonel Fifth New Jersey Volunteers.
Captain W. H. HILL,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Third Brigade.
Numbers 163. Report of Colonel Louis R. Francine, Seventh New Jersey Infantry.
CAMP NEAR FALMOUTH, VA.
December 20, 1862
SIR: I have the honor to report the following participation of this regiment in the late battle of Fredericksburg:
The regiment was formed in line early on the morning of the 11th instant, and marched with the brigade in its various changes of position, with it crossing the Rappahannock at the lower bridge on the afternoon of the 13th instant, and taking our position in the third line of infantry, where we remained until the morning of the 15th instant, when we took position in the front, relieving the Eleventh New Jersey Volunteers, then on picket. The detail from this regiment was on picket when the regiment was withdrawn, together with the other troops. We withdrew in excellent order across the river, where we were joined by our pickets on the following morning, December 16.
I have but one casualty to report, viz. Private Phillip Smith, of Com-