War of the Rebellion: Serial 039 Page 0274 N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXVII.

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tion in front of a grove and ravine, where we entrenched and held until the morning of the 2nd instant, when the division was ordered to retire across the river. Our brigade was the last to retire. I received an order from General Meredith to leave 150 men back to cover the movement and support the pickets in retiring. Company A, First Lieutenant Sloat commanding; Company D, Captain Bean; Company C, Captain Newman; Company F, Captain Young, and Company G, First Lieutenant Miller commanding, were retained for this purpose. Company E, Captain Pond, was out on picket. After the brigade had retired across the river and passed out of range of the enemy's guns, the pickets retired in good order, and these companies moved over the river deliberately and handsomely.

Captain Newman was left at the bridge, with Companies C and A, to cover the engineers in taking it up. The captain, with his command, rejoined the regiment on the same day at the point where we left the Catlett road, on our way to the United States Ford.

At about 5 o'clock on the morning of the 3rd, we, with the brigade, reached the battle-field of the Rapidan, near Chancellorsville, and were immediately deployed to the right, and close to the point where the battle was at the time raging. This position we occupied till the army retired on the 6th instant.

I cannot speak in too high praise of the entire command. Officers and enlisted men performed their whole duty. From the time of leaving Belle Plain, on the 28th ultimo, until we arrived in our present camp on the 7th instant (with the exception of two privates who dropped out without permission before we crossed the river, on account of sickness, they say since their return), every man was at all times to be found in his place.

Lieutenant Colonel John B. Callis and Major Mark Finnicum rendered efficient assistance in crossing the river on the 29th. Their coolness, promptness, and efficiency during the seven days under fire shows them to be officers to be depended upon in any situation.

Adjt. Robert Montieth was always on hand, ready for any and all duties, balls or no balls. Surg. D. Cooper Ayres and Asst. Surg. E. F. Spaulding, as usual with them, accompanied the regiment on to the field with their instruments, bandages, cordials, and arrangements for prompt care and removal of the wounded. At the crossing of the river, on the 29th, Surgeon Ayres was among the first on the opposite heights, and promptly at work dressing the wounds of friends and foes. Surgeon Spaulding came over as soon as our wounded on this side were cared for. It is enough to say of my line officers that they behaved with their usual gallantry. No better officers can be found.

The casualties in the regiment have been heretofore reported. In the death of Captain Alexander Gordon the regiment had met with a heavy loss, which cannot be replaced. He was the last one of the original captains in the line, and one of my most efficient officers; prompt and cheerful in the performance of every duty; remarkably brave under fire, and a congenial, gentlemanly companion. Second Lieutenant William O. Topping was a young officer lately promoted from the grade of a sergeant; his fine soldierly qualifications and gentlemanly bearing had won him the esteem of the entire command. Their loss is deeply regretted.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. W. ROBINSON,

Colonel, Commanding Seventh Regiment Wisconsin Volunteers.

Captain J. D. WOOD,

Assistant Adjutant-General, Fourth Brigade.