arrived in the vicinity of the United States Ford about 11 a.m. Picketed the river from about a mile below the ford up to and including Richardson's Ferry.
On the 30th ultimo, at 3.30 p.m., the pontoon bridges having been laid, this brigade was the first to cross, forming line of battle on the hills opposite, and skirmishing through the woods, finding no enemy. A short time before dusk we were put en route, and marched to the white house near Chancellorsville, where we bivouacked for the night.
On May 1, at 1 p.m., I was ordered to move the brigade on the road to Chancellorsville. The column had not cleared camp before the action was commenced by the forces in our front. We remained in this position for an hour, and I was then ordered to mass my brigade in the woods on the right of the road, which was done. After retaining this position for some two hours, I was ordered to occupy the same ground I did the night before. About dusk I was ordered to form line of battle in the edge of the woods to the right of the road, which position we occupied during the night.
Between 7 and 8 a.m. on the 2nd, I was ordered by the major-general commanding the division to occupy the edge of the woods on the left of the road, the line of battle being nearly perpendicular to the line occupied the night before, joining with Major-General Hancock's division on my right and Major-General Sykes' division on my left, and to throw out skirmishers on the same line with theirs. Between 10 and 11 a.m. I was ordered by the major-general commanding the corps to dig rifle-pits and fell an abatis in my front, which were completed by sunset. I retained this position during the night.
At 7 a.m. on the 3rd, I received orders from the major-general commanding the division to the four regiments and from line of battle facing the woods, parallel to the Plank road, which I did, taking the Eighth Ohio, the Fourteenth Indiana, the Fourth Ohio, and the Seventh West Virginia, leaving the Twenty-fourth and Twenty-eighth New Jersey to occupy the rifle-pits we had dug. I then received orders from the same source to have the right wing of the right regiment form behind the houses and outbuildings occupied by the division commander as his headquarters.
In about half an hour, I received orders from the division commander to move forward through the woods and attack the enemy who had just driven the force in front of us from those woods. I did so, leaving, by some misapprehension of the lieutenant-colonel commanding, for which no blame can be attached to him, the Eighth Ohio, which remained, supporting the battery on our right. We engaged the enemy, consisting of about eight battalions, some 30 yards in the woods; received one volley from them (fire at random), and drove them at a quick pace through the woods, over the Plank road, and out of their rifle-pits. Some 30 yards beyond their pits they had a column of at least a division massed, which, also started in retreat when the first line reached them; but, perceiving our small number, they turned and drove us back, at the same time opening a battery on the Plank road, enfilading us with grape and canister. In their rifle-pits we captured two stand of colors; had possession of a large quantity of small-arm ammunition, lying in boxes in front of their works, and captured 1 major, 5 captains, 7 lieutenants, and 270 enlisted men, and released a regiment of Zouaves belonging to the Third Corps that was held as prisoners behind those pits. In my pinion, had we been supported by a division, we could have retained possession of the Plank road. In retiring through the woods, they followed us slowly and at long range, doing but little damage with small-arms, but