War of the Rebellion: Serial 039 Page 0345 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

and Lieutenant Roller, of Company F, both gallant and valuable officers. In reviewing the proceedings of the day, it would hardly be just to particularize case of meritorious conduct, where all, both officers and men, according to their station, did equally well. not a man flinched; none passed to the rear, unless wounded or sent on a message. The officers kept themselves continually ont he alert cheering and directing the men, very many tearing cartridges to expedite the firing. The men worked with a zeal, heartiness, and enthusiasm, combined with coolness and caution, worthy of all praise. The ground in front of our breastwork was covered with the enemy's dead and wounded. I was obliged to send, through a galling fire of musketry and shell, several messages, which were unhesitatingly and correctly delivered, and the messengers in each case promptly returned and reported.

May 4.-At 7.30 a. m. I was ordered by Major-General Hancock to report with the regiment to Major-General Howard, commanding the Eleventh Corps, to support a battery, which order having been executed, General Howard assigned the regiment to support Battery C, First Rhode Island Artillery (Captain Waterman), under the immediate command of Major General Carl Schurz, commanding division. By 11.30 a. m., with intrenching tools procured from Hancock's division, the regiment had completed a good breastwork and ditch on the right of the battery, by the side of the road, behind part of the entrenchments of the Eleventh Corps, fronting southerly. More or less sharpshooting from the enemy was kept us along our front during the day, from which I had 1 man severely wounded.

At 10 p. m. a false alarm occurred, by reason of a few shots from the enemy, some distance to our right, but which drew the fire from the line of entrenchments in front of the Sixty fourth, and even from some of the reserves, but not a gun from the Sixty-fourth was fired. Many retreated in confusion on to our breastworks, but were promptly driven back to their entrenchments. The remainder of the night was quiet.

May 5.-At 11 a. m. the enemy brought on skirmishing to the left of the battery we were supporting, which soon passed along to the right, and was the firing from the enemy instantly cease, and was not resumed. At 2 p. m., at the instance of Major-General Howard, I dispatched a messenger to inform General Hancock that a body of the the enemy was moving to the right, past our front, and abut three fourths of a mile from us. General Hancock sent the same messenger to Major-General Couch. At 2.30 p. m., by order of Colonel J. R. Brooke, I sent for and received, at division headquarters, sufficient ammunition to furnish each enlisted man with from 100 to 110 rounds.

At 4 p. m. I received orders from Generals Hancock and Couch to hold our position at all hazards if the battery should be withdrawn; that the battery was nothing; the point was everything. At 5 p. m. a violent storm came on, lasting about an hour, filling our ditch with water, which was drained with some difficulty.

At dusk, by order of Colonel Brooke, I directed small fires to be built along the front. After dark, Major-General Howard ordered me to follow Battery C, First Rhode Island Artillery immediately and with great secrecy, no orders to be given above a whisper. I sent Adjutant Pettit to inform General Hancock, and followed the battery with the regiment, and reached the pontoon bridge at the United States Ford about 10 p. m., after fording several streams, one of which was quite deep and rapid, from the recent storm. Orders there being received from General Patrick, provost-marshal-general, prohibiting any battery supports