Jordan's four pieces were placed off to the right, across a large ravine, nearly half a mile distant from the other pieces, and some distance to the front two of Carter's rifles came in on a bluff near our rifle-pits. Just to the left of him Fry's two pieces were in position. Inside of our rilfe-pits, on a knob probably 40 feet higher than Carter's and Fry's positions, Parker and Lewis came in with five rifls. Then to the left of a bend of the ridge, about 80 yards from this last position, Captain Hurt had a Whitworth gun. The deflection of the ridge there was so sudden, in consequence of Smith's Spring branch coming in that the other guns had to be carried on the left of Smith's house, placing them to the rear a distance of probably 200 yards, but the interval measured along the front would not have brought them more than 100 yards from the Whitworth gun. Here Captain [E. S.] McCarthy, of the First Howitzers, was in position with two pieces, and Captain [Edward A.]
Marye on the extreme left with two pieces. As soon as the regular movement commenced on the right, fire was opened on the Yankee battery on the north side of the Rappahannock, consisting of eight pieces, protected by earthowrks, just in front of an old white house, two pieces about 200 yards up the river and two piees about 400 yards down the river from their central position, making in all twelve pieces. The fire of the Yankee batteries was very fierce and accurate, directed for some gime at the Whitworth gun and the four rifles on our left wing. These five pieces were in open view and unprotected. Finding that the firing on the right was slackening too much, allowing the Yankees to cut up our left guns, I hurried around to remedy this difficulty. After starting all of the pieces, to firing again, I took position over in front of our rifle-pits in the abatis, where I had full view of the effect of our shot. I found our fuses were very defective, although it was reported to me that we were using the fuse-igniter. I estimated that one of our shell out of fifteen exploded. I must think that the meal-powder was knocked off the fuse by the mallet while inserting the fuse. I prepared a few myself, which answered very well. I was compelled to watch closely the effect of all the projectiles, as if we were using entirely solid shot. But with this disadvantage of ammunition, I succeeded in disabling six out of eight guns in the central position and driving the other two off the field. The other four pieces continued a desultory fire until after dark, but they never too part regularly in the engagement.
Casualties I am unable to report. I know that 2 men were killed and 2 were very severely wounded.
As soon as the firing ceased, at dark, Captain McCarthy, of the Frist Howitzers, reported himself out of ammunition. He was sent to the rear, and replaced by Lieutenant [George A.] Ferrell, of Hardaway's [Hurt's] battery.
About 1 o'clock at night I was awakened by a fusilade in the direction of Banks' Ford. The men were all sleeping by their pieces. As soon as I could get my horse out, I went out to the batteries on the right. I ordered Captain Carter and Captain Fry to withdraw their pieces inside of our rifle-pits. I changed the direction of the line, so as to give us a full fire down a deep ravine which led out toward Banks' Ford. The position of the pieces on the left was not changed. I notified the officer in command of the infantry that I would expect notice from him whenever the enemy advanced sufficiently near for us to open fire over the abatis. About-this time Colonel Alexander came up, and reported that General McLaws desired no pieces fired immediately at Banks' Ford, as we had two brigade of infantry posted near that point. I therefore changed the position of the pieces again on the right, so as to
56 R R-VOL XXV, PT I