on the Fredericksburg road, immediately in my rear, and those near the Plank road to my left, opened a tremendous fire upon my line.
An infantry assault was made at he same time on General Geary's command, of the Twelfth Corps, on my left; success alternating from one side to the other, my artillery assisting our forces, until finally that command was forced to quit its ground and retire from the field. Its resistance was stern, but unsuccessful.
I was now fighting in opposite directions, ne line faced toward Fredericksburg, the other toward Gordonsville, these two lines being about half a mile apart. Projectiles from the enemy's artillery, from the front and rear, passed over both lines, while other pieces, in different positions, enfiladed both. Notwithstanding that my flank, which had been covered by General Geary, was entirely exposed, our fourteen pieces of artillery prevented him from advancing, although his battle-flags were within a few hundred yards of us. The troops, however, suffered very heavy losses from the enemy's artillery. The Chancellor house, which was being used as a hospital, was fired by shells. With a detail from the Second Delaware, of Brooke's command, under direction of Lieutenant W. P. Wilson, of my staff, the wounded were removed from within and around the building.
Leppien's battery, of five guns, then under command of First Lieutenant Edmund Kirby, First Artillery, on the right of the Chancellor house, having lost all its officers, cannoneers, and horses for the guns, I made a detail of men, who removed the pieces by hand to a place of safety. The information announcing the condition of the battery was brought to me by Corps. J. H. Lebroke, of that battery, from Lieutenant Kirby (then wounded), who requested that the battery might be removed. The detail made for the purpose, who faithfully performed their duty, was from the Fifty-third, One hundred and fortieth, and One hundred and sixteenth Pennsylvania (Battalion) Volunteers.
I next received an order that, after General Sickles' troops had retired, I would also be ordered to follow him to a new position.
Subsequently, at 10 a. m., I received the order to withdraw my forces. I first sent orders to the batteries to retire. After that had been accomplished, I marched my command in good order and without molestation, save by artillery, to a point about half a mile to the rear, toward the United States Ford, where a new line was established, my division occupying the left salient, toward Chancellors' house. This movement was completed about 11 a. m. At the same time that I received orders to withdraw from Chancellor's house, I sent directions to my line toward Fredericksburg to retire in a direction which would enable them to join me. A portion of this command, deflecting too far their left, was intercepted by a column of the enemy and captured.
Rifle-pits were immediately thrown up on our new front, abatis felled, and the position made as strong as practicable. I have no doubt that we could have successfully resisted any assault. During our stay here we suffered some from artillery, and also lost a few men by the enemy's sharpshooters.
In retiring from our line at Chancellor's house, I found that Brigadier-General Meagher's command had bee posted in the woods on the right of Leppien's battery, supporting it. That command I also withdrew. I found that Brigadier-General Caldwell's command, which had been posted on the right of General Meagher's position, had proceeded through the woods, driving the enemy out, and had been subsequently withdrawn. It joined me immediately, and, with General Meagher's command, occupied the front line of battle in our new position. I am