brought me that the Sixty-fourth New York Volunteers, which lay in the entrenchments across the road adjoining the left of the Sixty-sixth, were out of ammunition, that the enemy was advancing on them in column closed in mass, and that, unless immediately relieved by ammunition or re-enforcements, they would be obliged to fall back. i instantly sent to their support the remaining company of the One hundred and forty-fifth Pennsylvania Volunteers, with a message to Colonel Bingham, commanding the Sixty-fourth, to hold his line at every cost, and I would obtain re-enforcements for him. I then sent word to General Hancock of the state of affairs on my left and requested that a regiment might be sent to relieve the Sixty-fourth New York Volunteers. Shortly after, the Twenty-seventh Connecticut Volunteers arrived on the ground, and I conduced it down to the left, and relieved the Sixty-fourth new York Volunteers, which withdrew from the line and went to the rear. A few minutes after this, I was directed by Lieutenant Miller, aide to General Hancock, to be in readiness to fall back and draw in the pickets upon receiving orders to do so. Lieutenant Miller, in answer to an inquiry from me, indicated the direction I should take in falling back, which was an oblique through the woods toward the breastworks in front of the white house. I now went down to the left, and communicated to Captain Davis and major Nelson, of the Sixty-sixth New York Volunteers, the orders I had received, the direction to be taken and instructed them to be ready to fall back with the left of their regiment when they should se the movement commenced on the right.
I then had an interview with Colonel Bostwick, commanding the Twenty-seventh Connecticut Volunteers, whom I informed that I expected soon to receive orders to fall back. I gave him full directions as to the course he should pursue when the movement commenced. I pointed out to him the direction in which we would retire, telling him that the Sixty-sixth New York Volunteers would first fall back across the road and then oblique off through the woods toward the white house, indicating to him with my hand the exact direction. I instructed him to conform his movements to those of the Sixty-sixth New York Volunteers, and, when they commenced moving across the road, to move his line to the rear, and oblique gradually in the same direction with them; to move back steadily, not too fast, keeping his line well closed in with that of the Sixty-sixth, and so preserve an unbroken front, so that in case the enemy should follow us up we might be able to retire, firing. I further told Colonel Bostwick there were three companies of the Pennsylvania regiment and a few men of the Sixty-fourth new York Volunteers, who had not gone ut with their regiments when relieved, on the right of his command and between it and the left of the Sixty-sixth New York Volunteers, and directed him to take command of these, so that his command would extend to the left of the Sixty-sixth New York Volunteers.
At this moment, hearing firing toward the right of my line, I proceeded to that point, first directing Colonel Bostwick to communicate with the commanding officers of the detachments of the One hundred and forty-eighth Pennsylvania and the Sixty-firth new York Volunteers, immediately joining his left, and instruct them to be in readiness to fall back, as to the direction to be taken, and to conform their movements to those of the Twenty-seventh Connecticut.
On reaching the right of my line, I found that a general engagement had taken place between the forces of the enemy and our own to the right of the picket line. At this moment, lieutenant Miller came up with orders for me to fall back with the pickets when the line to the right, now engaged, was seen to fall back and leave the breastworks.