In advancing to the charge our men were exposed to a most murderous fire of both artillery and musketry, which thinned our ranks. After many of the officers had fallen, the fire of the enemy,now at very close range, compelled us to fall back, but without panic. Although the attack was unsuccessful, my regiment a point nearer the enemy's works than any other, as our dead, lying close by, fully show. Captains Lyon, Breckenridge, Hague, and McCready were severely wounded, while gallantly leading their companies amid the hottest fire, and H. Barnes, first lieutenant of Company I, fell, dead, nobly discharging his duty. My brave adjutant A. G. Reed, was also severely wounded. Major Thompson, while in advance of the regiment, had his horse shot from under him, and was himself wounded in the hand.
I herewith transmit you a list of the casualties of the command.*
I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant Colonel, Commanding One hundred and thirty-fourth Pa. Vols.
Captain H. C. RANNEY,
Assistant Adjutant-General, First Brigade.
No. 202. Report of Colonel Peter H. Allabach, One hundred and thirty-first Pennsylvania Infantry, commanding Second Brigade.
HEADQUARTERS SECOND BRIGADE, Near Potomac Creek, Va., December 19, 1862.
GENERAL: Agreeably to your instructions, received in the forenoon of the 13th instant, near the Phillips house, I put my brigade in motion and kept close to the First Brigade, commanded by General Tyler. Crossing the pontoon bridge, and passing up the street leading through the city to the battle-ground, I moved my column to the left of the Telegraph road, formed two lines of battle, and, by your directions, moved them off at a charge. The line moved with great steadiness some 200 yards, when they came to a line of infantry down just in rear of a small elevation,which partially covered from the incessant musket firing. My troops,not having before been under fire, seemed to think that they were not go to beyond. I rode off to the right and there found an officer; asked him to withdraw his men, which I could not get him to do. At that time your aide, Lieutenant Humphreys, came up and gave me orders to cease firing. While endeavoring to comply with this order, my adjutant-general fell, shot through the right lung.
Being yourself present during the whole action, it is unnecessary for me to say anything further in regard to the coolness and bravery of Captain Porter, acting assistant adjutant-general. My adjutant being wounded, one of my orderlies having received a dangerous wound, and my aide, Lieutenant Whittles, being unhorses by the explosion of a shell, I should have found some difficulty in forming line for a second charge, had it not been for your presence cheering the men on, and with the officers taking the front of the line, you having ordered them all in front on their regiments. At this time I received valuable aid from Lieutenant Humphreys, whose coolness cannot by surpassed.
*Embodied in revised statement, p.137.