might be capable of making against them. There was no wasting of ammunition here; every man fired with the utmost coolness and deliberation, taking careful and steady aim at his object, as if firing at a target for a prize. not a man flinched under the terrible fire to which he was now subjected. Every one of them felt that the high and enviable reputation of the gallant old Third Brigade was in his special keeping, and was determined that it should not be tarnished by any act of his.
About 10 o'clock, the gallant Colonel Miles, commanding the picket, was shot in the breast by one of the enemy's sharpshooters and was removed from the field. About this time, learning that that left of my line was being pressed, I sent one company of the One hundred and forty-fifth Pennsylvania (three companies of which regiment had been sent to re-enforce my line) to that point, and subsequently sent another of these companies to the same point.
I was then informed that the Sixty-fourth, joining my left, had exhausted all their ammunition, and would be compelled to fall back unless immediately supplied, whereupon I sent to their assistance the remaining company of the One hundred and forty-fifth Pennsylvania, and then communicated to General Hancock the state of affairs on the left, and requested that a regiment might be sent to relieve the Sixty-fourth new York Volunteers. Shortly afterward the Twenty-seventh Connecticut arrived on the ground, and I conducted it down to the left, and relieved the Sixty-fourth new York Volunteers, which withdrew from the line and went to the rear.
I now assumed command of the entire picket line. Shortly after, I was directed by Lieutenant Miller, aide to General Hancock, to be in readiness to fall back from the picket line upon receiving orders to do so. I then had an interview with Colonel Bostwick, commanding the Twenty-seventh Connecticut, whom I informed that I expected soon to receive orders to fall back, and instructed him as to the course he should pursued when the movement should commence. In a short time after this, Lieutenant Miller directed me to retire the moment the forces on my right were seen to fall back. The forces indicated soon after fell back, and I immediately took the necessary step to bring off my line of pickets, which was accomplished under a most terrific artillery fire from the right, left, and front. The regiment here suffered a heavy loss, Captain Strickland, Lieutenants King and Feder, and 57 enlisted men being found missing when the regiment rejoined the brigade within the breastworks on the left of the white house. Most of this number, I regret to say, must have been killed or wounded by the artillery fire while falling back through the woods, as they were know to have left the entrenchments with the regiment. The regiment having rejoined the brigade, took up position in line of battle on the left of the white house, where it remained Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, subjected several times to the artillery fire of the enemy.
Tuesday afternoon, a detail of 92 enlisted men, under the command of Captain Munn, was sent on picket. The next morning, about 2.30 o'clock, the regiment fell back with the brigade, and recrossed the river at the United States Ford, and, after a continued march of about twelve hours, returned to its old camp near Falmouth.
A report of the loss of the regiment,* from the time of leaving camp until its return, has been already forwarded, showing a total of 71 killed, wounded, and missing.
*Embodied in revised statement, p. 176.