Numbers 187. Report of Colonel Sidney Burbank, Second U. S. Infantry, commanding Second Brigade.
CAMP NEAR FALMOUTH, VA.,
May 7, 1863.
SIR: I have the honor to report that, nothing material having occurred on the march previously, this brigade left its encampment near Chancellorsville on the morning of May 1, advancing on the Fredericksburg road, left in front, leading the division.
Having advanced 1 1/2 or 2 miles on this road, the enemy was discovered in our front, and I received orders from the major-general commanding the division to deploy the brigade, and deploy a regiment of skirmishers in front, and await further instructions. The brigade was immediately deployed, the Second and Sixth Infantry on the right of the road, the Seventh, Tenth, and Eleventh on the left; the Seventeenth deployed as skirmishers. Finding the brigade was much exposed in that position, being on the side of the hill, to the shells from the enemy's batteries, I ordered the line to advance to the bottom of the hill to a fence bordering a small stream which ran along our front on the left of the road, and the right to advance to the shelter of the timber which reaches the road at that point. I soon after received orders to advance to some houses bordering on the road, and shortly afterward to advance to the crest of the hill. This was stubbornly opposed by the enemy, but the advance of the line was irresistible. The enemy fled before us or was captured, and in a few minutes the brigade occupied the crest of the hill. Having gained this position, I was directed to hold it at all hazards, and a disposition of the troops most favorable for the purpose was made accordingly. After holding this position for about an hour without any serious molestation, orders were received to retire. The brigade was accordingly withdrawn slowly in line of battle and in good order, occasionally facing about and fronting the enemy, the wounded at the same time being carefully removed to the rear. The brigade soon after returned to the camp it occupied in the morning.
I cannot speak too highly of the good conduct of both officers and men. On gaining the crest of the hill, when we were ordered to halt, it required the utmost exertions of the officers to restrain the men from going on, so anxious were they to pursue the enemy.
Where all did so well it is difficult to discriminate, but I desire to mention by name the regimental commanders-Major DeLancey Floyd-Jones, Eleventh Infantry, for the great coolness with which he commanded his regiment, and Major George L. Andrews, Seventeenth Infantry, for the skillful manner with which he covered the advance with his line of skirmishers. Captain L. C. Bootes, of the Sixth, and Captain D. P. Hancock, of the Seventh, commanded their regiments in a highly creditable manner. Captain S. S. Marsh, Second Infantry, was shot dead while giving an order the head of his regiment. The death of this estimable and gallant officer is a serious loss to the service. Lieutenant E. G. Bush, Tenth Infantry, joined his regiment but the day before with two companies of his regiment direct from the Western prairies, and rendered most efficient service. The Tenth, with the Eleventh, captured some 30 prisoners.
My personal staff-Lieutenant Edwin E. Sellers, Tenth Infantry, acting assistant adjutant-general; Lieutenant William Falck, Second Infantry, acting assistant inspector-general; Lieutenant William L. Kellogg, Tenth In-