War of the Rebellion: Serial 039 Page 0311 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

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Numbers 65. Report of Major General Winfield S. Hancock, U. S. Army, Commanding First Division.


May 19, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following summary of the operations of my division during the late engagements with the enemy:

At 7 a. m. on April 27, the Second Brigade (Meagher's) marched to Banks' and the United States Fords, the command at Banks' Ford being under the direction of Colonel Patrick Kelly, Eighty-eighth New York, consisting of the Eighty-eight and Sixty-third Regiments New York Volunteers, Brigadier-General Meagher, with the Sixty-ninth New York, Twenty-eighth Massachusetts, and One hundred and sixteenth Battalion Pennsylvania Volunteers being posted at the United States Ford.

On April 28, the remainder of the division marched to Banks' Ford.

On April 29, the division moved from near Banks' Ford, and encamped that evening within 1 1/2 miles of the United States Ford, leaving one company, of 60 men, at Banks' Ford.

At 10.30 a. m., April 30, the command marched, arriving at General Couch's headquarters at 11 a. m., and from thence proceeded, at 4 p. m., the delay being caused in building the bridges, to the United States Ford. At 8 p. m. the entire division had crossed the pontoon bridges at that point. It immediately proceeded through the Wilderness, and encamped within half a mile of Chancellorsville at 10 p. m. The Fifth New Hampshire, Eighty-first Pennsylvania, and Eighty-eighth New York Volunteers, under command of Colonel E. E. Cross, Fifth new Hampshire Volunteers, were left to serve as a rear guard to the ammunition train of the corps until it had crossed the United States Ford. By direction of General Couch, four regiments of the Irish Brigade, under command of Colonel R. Byrnes, Twenty-eighth Massachusetts Volunteers, were posted on a road leading from the main road toward Banks' Ford.

On May 2, at 1.30 p. m., that portion of the division not heretofore mentioned as detached marched int he direction of Chancellorsville, and from thence proceeded, ont he old turnpike road, toward Fredericksburg, to the assistance of Major-General Sykes, who was then engaged with the enemy,a bout 1 1/2 miles from Chancellorsville. having arrived ont he ground, orders were received to withdraw all the troops. The division took post, in order to allow General Sykes' command to be relieved. After that command had retired, I commenced withdrawing the division. Some artillery shots were exchanged with the enemy, and during the time I remained in that position the skirmishers on my right flank, under command of Colonel Miles, Sixty-first New York Volunteers, and Colonel Frank, Fifty-second New York Volunteers, became engaged, and lost some men. With this exception, the command was retired safely, it being threatened in flank and rear during its march by the same command of the enemy which had engaged the skirmishers. Just as the rear of the column had passed the left of General Sykes' command, which was then massed on the side of the road from which the enemy was advancing, the enemy appeared and attacked General Sykes, but was immediately repulsed by a portion of his command. I immediately commenced forming my division on the right of General Sykes, in order to meet the enemy, when I received an order, in person, from General Hooker, to form on his left, on the other side of the road, with my right resting on the road, and facing toward