the left of the brigade, when we made a reconnaissance in force 2 miles south of Chancellorsville, on the road leading to Fredericksburg, until we came upon the enemy in strong position on the left of the road, and were exposed to a severe fire from his batteries for a short time, when the order was given to return to our former position, which was accomplished the same afternoon without loss. After returning to our encampment of the previous evening, the enemy made a charge upon Knap's and Best's batteries, stationed on the left of the brick hospital, near the Plank road,, and the regiment was ordered to their support. The regiment was then assigned a position on the left of the brigade, when the regiment commenced building a breastwork, which was hastily but strongly constructed of rails and small timber, to resist the enemy's approach on the Plank road, after which time two companies were thrown in front of the brigade as skirmishers, while the balance of the regiment was busily engaged strengthening the breastworks already erected, which duty was continued during the night without intermission or sleep.
On the morning of the 2nd-the regiment still lying along the breastworks-at 5 a. m. the enemy were found advancing in force on the Plank road. They advanced until within about 200 yards of our abatis, when a section of Best's battery, under the command of Lieutenant Muhlengerg, opened a deadly fire of grape and canister upon them, which proved very destructive, and compelled them to retire. About 2 p. m. six companies of the regiment were ordered by Brigadier-General Geary tot he front as skirmishers, to ascertain the strength of the enemy, who were in position on the left an in the rear of the wood, with artillery, from which position our troops were being shelled. While moving cautiously forward, three companies on the right and three on the left of the road, to within a very short distance of the enemy's position, skirmishing as we advanced, an also under a heavy fire from his batteries, about this time we were disconcerted by a severe fire of musketry from the rear. We supposed we were flanked by the enemy, but ascertained that the fire originated from a brigade advancing to our support. We were engaged with the enemy for about two hours, when the order was given to retire within the breastworks, which was performed in good order.
Our loss during the engagement was two of our bravest officers dangerously, if not fatally, wounded (Captain Charles W. Borbidge, of Company c, and Second Lieutenant Charles Kennedy, of Company I), and 26 enlisted men killed, wounded, and missing, out of a force of not over 150 men.
We resumed our position behind the breastworks, and were subjected to a severe fire from a battery the enemy had planted southeast of our lines, and were in range of the enemy's artillery from the right and left. About 7 p. m. again commenced strengthening the breastworks in our front, and the entire regiment, with the exception of our skirmishers, worked incessantly all night.
On the morning of the 3rd-the regiment still in position along the breastworks-at 6 a. m., heavy firing commenced on our right, which was continued until between 8 and 9 a. m., when the troops on our right were forced back, leaving our right exposed to a ranking fire from the enemy's artillery and musketry. The order was then give to retire, moving by the left flank to the rear of the brick hospital, which movement was executed most creditably, though subjected to a galling fire from the enemy's artillery. After having formed in line, the regiment was again ordered by General Geary to retake the position along the breast-