second Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, was marched half a mile on the road to Chancellorsville and halted. An order was received through Lieutenant Russell, aide-de-camp, to fall in, and, when the column started, to follow, keeping the right-hand side of the road.
When the brigade started, an order was given by Lieutenant Burt, aide-de-camp to General Couch, not to move until a battery was brought in front. About 11 a.m. an order came through Lieutenant Russell, aide-de-camp, to move forward, which we did, keeping on the Plank road beyond Chancellorsville. Having passed the cross-road about 200 yards, an order arrived to return in double-quick time,and retire to our former camp at the hospital. On the evening of the 1st, we were under arms during several attack upon our lines. During the attack on the center, on Saturday evening, May 2, the brigade was formed near and facing the wood. Directions were received through Lieutenant Torbert, aide-de-camp, to move to the right and rear; and, subsequently, to move far enough to the rear to unmask Ames' battery. Finally it was again moved by Major Norvell, assistant adjutant-general, across the road, and I was directed to support Colonel Carroll. The brigade here intercepted all stragglers, and sent them to rejoin their respective corps. Colonel John D. McGregor, Fourth Regimen New York Volunteers, who had so ably commanded the brigade, was compelled to retire early in the afternoon, being too ill to perform duty, and the command devolved upon me.
Vigorous assaults were made by the enemy on our center at 10.20 p.m., 11.35 p.m., and 1.15 a.m. At every attack, the brigade was promptly under arms. At 5.25 a.m. on the 3rd, the bridge was under arms, another attack having been made on the center. The brigade was moved about 10 o'clock, by an order through Major Norvell, assistant adjutant-general, to the edge of the wood, with instructions to advance on the right of Colonel Carroll's brigade. I reached the skirt of the wood, and gave the order to commence firing, as the enemy had charged and were then in sight. The brigade delivered a well-sustained fire, and then I gave the order to advance. The brigade moved rapidly, in good order, driving the enemy before them in great confusion, and cheering most lustily. My men captured a good number of prisoners, whom I sent to the rear by themselves so as not to lessen my effective force. I kept my men well together, presenting a close line. The men were quite cool, and obeyed every order with enthusiasm and alacrity.
In advancing through the wood, I tried to keep up communication with the First Brigade, commanded by Colonel Carroll, and the Twenty-eighth New Jersey Volunteers on my right, and threw out a number of skirmishers to feel the ground in my immediate front, to prevent any surprise. A number of the enemy were found concealed behind bushes, and in some instances fired from trees, placed there, doubtless, to pick off our officers. I continued to advance cautiously in this manner, driving the enemy before me, until I found my communication broken on both my right and left. I then deemed it prudent to retire until I could make a union with the other lines. I accordingly fell back about 100 yards, and took position. A furious charge was then made on our line, and I directed the men to hold their fire until the enemy came in sight, and then to let every shot tell. The brigade received this assault and checked the enemy. While the men of my command were repelling this attack, the batteries in our rear were throwing shells which exploded directly over my line. As the enemy was repulsed, and no troops could be seen on either my right or left, I gave the word to retire, fearing that my command might be outflanked, which, indeed, came