In view of the contemplated movement of this army from the line of the Rappahannock, in June last the following detail of signal officers was made by direction of the commanding general, viz: The right wing was supplied with 6, the wing with 4, and the center with 4, 8 officers being held as a reserve, to be used wherever the changes in the position of the army might render them of the greatest service. On June 14, the headquarters of this army moved from the vicinity of Famouth to Dumfries. The signal officers detailed for the three subdivisions of the army moved with the commander of each, while the party in reserve remained near the headquarters of the general commanding. Early on this day, by order, of the chief of staff, two signal officers reported to Brigadier General G. K. Warren, who was to assume command of the troops in charge of the Government
property about to be removed from Aquia Creek. A station of observation was established upon Fort Numbers 2, at that place, communicating with the gunboats Mahaska and Freeborn (lying off the creek, for the purpose of covering the withdrawal of stores and troops), upon which vessels signal parties had been previously stationed. Many messages were sent between these stations, and communication successfully kept up until the night of the 16th, when, the object of the flotilla having been attained, the officers rejoined the reserve. The party on station of observation at the Philip House, opposite Fredericksburg, remained on duty all this day, and reported to General W. S. Hancock the frequent changes made by the enemy on the other side of the river. On the 15th, two reconnaissances were made toward Ceterville by the officers attached to the First Corps, and reports sent to Major General J. F. Reynolds. On the 16th, a loop of signal telegraph wire was run out, connecting general headquarters at Fairfax Station with the Morse telegraph office at the depot. On the 17th, Captain B. F. Fisher, chief acting signal officer, went out upon a reconnaissance, and in the evening was captured by the enemy near Aldie. On the 18th, communications by signal telegraph was established, by the direction of the chief of staff, between general headquarters, near Fairfax Court-House, and the headquarters of Major General J. F. Reynolds, near Herndon Station. On the 19th, a signal telegraph line was extended from Herndon to Guilford Station, to which point General Reynolds had moved his headquarters. On the 20th, by direction of the chief of staff, two signal officers were assigned to each army corps. Communication was opened by flag signals between the First Corps headquarters, at Guilford Station, the Eleventh Corps, at Trappe Rock, and Twelth Corps, at Leesburg. The officers at the last-named point worked successfully also with the signal at Poolesville, Md., and through it with those at Sugar Mountain, Point of Rocks, and Maryland Heights. Thus, conjointly by flag signals and signal telegraph, a complete line was established from a reliable station of observation on Maryland Heights direct to the commanding general at Fairfax Court-house, giving to him at the same time a rapid means of communication with all the corps above named. A reconnaissance was made for General H. W. Slocum by the signal officers attached to his command. On the 21st and 22d, the stations occupied on the 19th and 20th
201 Chapter XXXIX. THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
worked successfully, and two reconnaissances as far as the Bull Run Mountains were made for General W. S. Hancock. On the 23d, the lines already in operation were made still more perfect by the establishment of a station near the headquarters of the Fifth and Cavalry Corps, at Aldie, which, communicating with the Eleventh Corps, furnished a safe means of transmitting messages between the commanding general and Major Generals A. Pleasonton, G. G. Meade, and other corps commanders. On the 24th, the lines previously established worked uninterruptedly. Intelligence of the crossing of the Potomac by the enemy was received this day from the following message:
MARYLAND HEIGHTS SIGNAL STATION,
June 24-10. 40 a. m.
Large trains are crossing at Sharpsburg. Artillery and general trains are passing near Charlestown toward Shepherdstown.
Lieutenant, Signal Officer.
A message confirming the above was received, via Washington, late in the afternoon by the commanding general from General Tyler, at Maryland Heights. On the 25th, all signal communication was discontinued upon the removal of the army corps, and the signal telegraph line withdrawn. Two officers made separate reconnaissances for General W. S. Hancock, while two others performed the same duties for General J. F. Reynolds. On the 26th, general headquarters moved to Poolesville. By direction of the general commanding, three signal officers were ordered to report for duty to Major General A. Pleasonton, commanding Cavalry Corps. On the 27th, the headquarters of this army moved to Frederick, and an attempt was made to open communication between this point and the station on Sugar Loaf Mountain, which proved unsuccessful, on account of the unfavorable condition of the atmosphere. A station of observation was established at Middletown, and communication opened from that place to another point of observation at South Mountain Pass, and the results reported to Generals J. F. Reynolds and O. O. Howard. On the 28th and 29th, no signal operations were found necessary. On the 30th, general headquarters removed to Taneytown. A signal station was placed in the church steeple at that place, and a party sent to Emmitsburg for the purpose of opening a line between General J. F. Reynolds and headquarters. Communication was not opened this day on account of the haziness of the atmosphere. The signal officer with General John Buford, who occupied the town of Gettysburg, took position in the steeple of the college, and reported to General Buford the whereabouts and movements of the enemy. The officers attached to the First Corps, from a station of observation on the mountain back of Emmitsburg, made a telescopic reconnaissance toward Gettysburg, reporting the results to the general commanding that corps. On July 1, general headquarters remained near Taneytown. A station of observation was established, first on the college and subsequently on the court-house in Gettysburg, and reports of the position, numbers, and movements of the enemy sent by signals to General Howard, on Cemetery Hill, southeast of the town. In the
202 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
afternoon of this day two reconnaissances were made from Gettysburg, for the information of General W. S. Hancock, by the signal officer, temporarily attached to his staff. In the evening I was made acquainted by the general commanding with the line of defense to be occupied by the army in case the enemy made an irresistible attack upon our position, and directed by him to "examine the line thoroughly, and at once upon the commencement of the movement extend telegraphic communication from each of the following points, viz, general headquarters, near Frizellburg, Manchester, Union Mills, Middleburg, and the Taneytown Road. "
In order that these instructions might be promptly and successfully fulfilled, signal telegraph trains were sent to Frizellburg, and everything held in readiness to extend the wire at a moment's notice to the points desired by the commanding general. During the whole of this day, endeavors were made to open the signal line between general headquarters, Emmitsburg, and Round Top Mountain, but on account of the smokiness of the atmosphere, the desired result was not obtained until 11 p. m., when the first message was received. These lines were kept open during the subsequent battle
at Gettysburg and until July 6. In the event of the repulse and retirement of our army, they must have been eminently useful. Late in the evening of this day, I was directed by the chief of staff to start at daylight the next morning with the signal officers held in reserve, and rejoin the commanding general on the field at Gettysburg. On July 2, I reported at an early hour at the point selected for headquarters of the army for that day, but found the signal officers, who had been previously assigned to the different army corps, already on the field, and that through their exertion the general commanding had been placed in communication with nearly all the corps commanders. Before 11 a. m. every desirable point of observation was occupied by a signal officer, and communication opened from General Meade's headquarters to those of every corps commander. A station was established upon Round Top Mountain, on the left of our line, and from this point the greater part of the enemy's forces could be seen and their movements reported. From this position, at 3. 30 p. m., the signal officer discovered the enemy massing upon General Sickles' left, and reported the fact to General Sickles and to the general commanding. At 5. 30 p. m. the enemy opened a terrific fire, but our left was fully prepared for them, and the fight gradually extended to the whole front, so that every signal flag was kept almost constantly working. The station at Round Top was once, and that at General Meade's headquarters twice, broken up by the rapid advance of the enemy and the severity of the fire, but were immediately reoccupied when the positions became tenable. An important station of observation was also opened on the right of our center, near Cemetery Hill, from which the whole of the left of the rebel army was closely watched. A short time before the action opened, two officers were sent to reconnoiter the enemy's extreme left, and their reports were given to the commanding general. The stations established during the day were held at night. On July 3, the same positions were occupied by the signal officers as on the day previous, and the reports of movements, &c., unfail-
203 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
ingly sent to the commanding general. The station at General Meade's headquarters and that at General Howard's were rendered inoperative for a couple of hours by the furious attack of the rebels upon our center, but both were again actively employed as soon as the tremendous fire moderated sufficiently to permit of messages being read and transmitted with accuracy. The station on Round Top continued to report throughout the day discoveries in regard to the enemy's position. In the evening, the commanding general removed his headquarters to a strip of woods on the Taneytown road, and another station was established at this point, still maintaining communication with those previously opened. On July 4, at 5. 40 a. m., the signal officer from a station on the college in Gettysburg reported to the general commanding "that the enemy had evacuated the position they held yesterday, " and at 9. 30 a. m. reported the new line occupied by them, and that they were retreating toward Hagerstown. This station was kept open all day, and information in regard to the movements of the enemy sent in by orderly. General Meade's headquarters were removed to the Baltimore pike, and this was made the terminus of all signal lines. July 5. -All signal stations were this day discontinued, excepting those on Round Top Mountain, Cemetery Hill, court-house, and General Meade's headquarters. The officers previously assigned to army corps moved with them. A signal officer accompanied general G. K. Warren with the advance of the Sixth Corps, and communication was kept up by him with Round Top Mountain, thus enabling the party at the latter place to make known his discoveries in regard to the enemy to General Warren. On July 6, the lines between Round Top and Taneytown and Emmitsburg and Taneytown were discontinued. The two officers attached to the First Corps made a telescopic reconnaissance from the hill back of Emmitsburg, and sent the information obtained to Major General John Newton. The same officers subsequently occupied signal stations at Turner's Gap and Washington Monument, and reported the result of their observations of Hagerstown and vicinity to Generals Sedgwick and Newton. July 7, the headquarters of the army moved to Frederick. The signal officer who had been previously assigned to duty with the detached command under General Neill made a reconnaissance near Waynesborough, Pa., discovering the whereabouts and movements of the enemy. On July 8, in the afternoon, general headquarters moved to Middletown. A party of signal officers, under charge of Captain W. J. L. Nicodemus, arrived from Washington, for the purpose of working in conjunction with the signal corps of this army. Captain Nicodemus opened a line of communication between Frederick and South Mountain Pass. On July 9, headquarters of the army moved to Turner's Gap. A station was occupied near this place, communicating, through others at Middletown and Crampton's Pass, with Maryland Heights. This line, appearing of little importance on account of telegraphic facilities, was abandoned the same day, and its officers ordered to more active duty in the front. A station of observation was established on Washington Monument, near South Mountain Pass, from which Hagerstown and the whole valley could be seen. On July 10, the general commanding and his staff removed to a bivouac near Beaver Creek crossing, west of Boonsborough. In the
204 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
evening, communication was opened from general headquarters, through Washington Monument station, with headquarters of the Second and Twelfth Corps, near Bakersville: Third and Fifth Corps near Antietam Bridge, and the First and Sixth Corps near Beaver Creek crossing, on the Hagerstown pike. On this day the officer who accompanied General Neill on his expedition from a point selected by him on Franklin's Cliff, South Mountain Range, near Leitersburg, discovered the numbers and position of the enemy in and around Hagerstown, and sent the information to General Neill, and by orderly to General Meade. On July 11, by direction of the assistant adjutant-general, a signal telegraph line was run out between general headquarters and those of General John Sedgwick, on the Hagerstown pike, 5 miles distant. No communication was had by flag signals this day on account of the thick haze. Two reconnaissances were made toward Hagerstown for Generals Howard and Kilpatrick by the officers attached to their respective commands. On July 12,, a party was sent to open a line of signals between general headquarters and the brigade of General Neill, near Leitersburg, but the attempt failed by reason of the thickness of the atmosphere. The signal telegraph wire was this day extended to General Sedgwick's new headquarters at Funkstown, and another run out between general headquarters and those of General Slocum, 2, 5 miles distant and near Four Corners. Both lines worked with but slight interruptions until the night of the 14th, when they were withdrawn. Flag signals were worked between the headquarters of the Fifth Corps and others in the vicinity; also between General Howard's headquarters, at Funkstown, and a station of observation in Hagerstown. On July 13, all signal communication previously established was still kept up. Two officers were sent to make a telescopic reconnaissance from Elk Mountain. On July 14, the enemy were discovered to have crossed the river during the night before. At the close of this day all signal stations and lines were discontinued. On July 15, the headquarters of the army moved to Berlin. A signal station was opened at that place, communicating with a lookout station on Maryland Heights. This line remained in operation until the 18th. On July 16, the signal telegraph line was run from general headquarters to the Eleventh Corps headquarters, 1, 5 miles distant. Two officers were sent to make a telescopic reconnaissance from Loudoun Heights. Their reports were transmitted to the general commanding by orderly. On July 17, communication was opened by flag signals between headquarters at Berlin and an outpost station at Point of Rocks. An officer was sent to occupy a point of observation on Short Mountain. On July 18, general headquarters moved to Lovettsville, Va. A line of flag signals was worked between the Third and Fifth Corps. On July 19, headquarters of the army were moved to Wheatland, and communication established from thence to the lookout station on Short Mountain, and also between that mountain and the Fifth Corps headquarters. On July 20, the general headquarters moved to Union, and in the
205 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
evening signals by torch were worked between that place and a station of observation at Snicker's Gap, on the Blue Ridge. The whereabouts and movements of the enemy in the Shenandoah Valley were discovered and correctly reported to the commanding general by the officers on this station. A party was ordered to open station and make a reconnaissance at Ashby's Gap. They arrived at that point at 8 p. m., but for some undiscovered reason failed to open communication with general headquarters, during the night. On July 21, the officers at Ashby's Gap made known the numbers, movements, and position of the enemy in the Valley to General G. A. Custer, and through General W. H. French to the general commanding. At 8 p. m. two officers were ordered on a reconnaissance to Manassas Gap. The party at Snicker's Gap station reported frequently during the day to the general commanding their observations of the enemy. On July 22, communication was opened by flag signals, via Union, with Snicker's and Ashby's Gaps. General headquarters moved to Upperville. Attempts were made to open [communication] between this point and Ashby's Gap station, but failed from difficulty and delay experienced in finding a suitable point near headquarters. The officer at Manassas Gap transmitted by orderly to the general commanding the results of his observations. A line of signals was opened between Ashby's Gap and the Fifth Corps headquarters, near Rectortown. A point at Manassas Gap was selected for telescopic reconnaissances by the officer attached to General Marritt's command, from which he was driven shortly afterward by an attack of the enemy. On July 23, general headquarters moved to Piedmont at noon, and to Markham Station in the evening, and communication was opened from the latter place to Ashby's Gap, via Piedmont. At 6 p. m. the officer in charge of signals at the front of Manassas Gap established a line between General Meade's headquarters, at Linden Station, General French, with the advance, and General Sykes. This line was discontinued upon the withdrawal of our infantry the next morning. The officer with the Fifth Corps occupied a point overlooking Front Royal, and sent information of the enemy by flag signals to General Sykes. On July 24, at an early hour, I proceeded with four officers to the extreme advance of our army, but did not succeed in rendering any service before the enemy had evacuated Front Royal and its vicinity. In the afternoon, general headquarters moved to Salem. Signal communication was opened between General Newton's headquarters, at Warrenton, and General Howard's, at New Baltimore. This line was discontinued the next day upon the removal of the Eleventh Corps to Warrenton Junction. On July 25, headquarters of the army moved to Warrenton. A station of observation was established near Amissville for General Custer. On July 26, a signal telegraph line was run between general headquarters and General Sedgwick's headquarters, on the Waterloo road, 2, 5 miles distant. Another line was also extended from headquarters to the office of the Morse telegraph, in Warrenton. A station of observation was put up on Watery Mountain, communicating by flag signals to general headquarters. On July 29, the line to Watery Mountain was continued to General Custer's headquarters, at Amissville.
206 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
On July 30 and 31, the communication opened on the 29th remained intact. In summing up the operations of the signal corps of this army for the month and a half herein recorded, I find that sixty-seven signal stations of observation and communication were occupied, eight signal telegraph lines established, and seventeen extra reconnaissances made. I have stated as concisely as possible the amount and character of the work performed. When it failed in a signal point of view it has been noted; but of the real value of the information obtained by the corps and the importance of other services rendered, the commanding general and the corps commanders are best able to judge. A map is herewith inclosed, *indicating by the signal flags placed upon it the majority of the points at which stations were occupied; by dotted red lines where communication by flag signals was established, and by plain red lines where the signal telegraph was used. During the late movements of the army, 3 signal officers and 6 flagmen were captured by the enemy. The only reported injuries were those of 2 flagmen slightly wounded at the battle of Gettysburg. The capture of Captain B. F. Fisher, chief acting signal officer, has been previously mentioned. Captain C. S. Kendall and Lieutenant L. R. Fortescue, acting signal officers, were taken at Emmitsburg, where they had been on station, by Stuart's cavalry upon their retreat from Gettysburg, July 5. The following officers are entitled to mention for the active part taken by them in the late operations of the corps, and for the prompt and efficient manner in which they discharged every duty, both under the fire of the enemy and on the march: Captains James S. Hall and P. A. Taylor, serving with Second Army Corps; Captains P. Babcock, jr., and T. R. Clark, serving with Eleventh Army Corps; Captains Joseph Gloskoski and Richard Dinsmore, serving with Cavalry Corps; Captain F. E. Beardslee, in charge signal telegraph train; First Lieutenants J. C. Wiggins and N. H. Camp, serving with First Army Corps; First Lieutenant George J. Clarke, serving with Sixth Army Corps; First Lieutenant J. E. Holland, serving with Twelfth Army Corps. First Lieutenants William S. Stryker, adjutant, and A. B. Capron, acting assistant quartermaster and acting ordnance officer of Signal Corps, have discharged the duties of their respective positions throughout the campaign with a care and faithfulness which entitles them to commendation. I take pleasure in still further mentioning Captain D. E. Castle, of this corps, for distinguished gallantry and close attention to duty under most trying circumstances. On July 3, when the enemy made their furious attack upon our center at Gettysburg, Captain Castle occupied a signal station at General Meade's headquarters, near Cemetery Hill, and remained there on duty after all others had been driven away. His flagmen had also left with his signal equipments, under the impression that their officer had gone with the rest. Having occasion to send a couple of important messages to the general commanding, then at General Slocum's headquarters, Captain Castle quickly cut a pole, extemporized a signal flag from a bedsheet procured near by, and sent his dispatches through under a most galling fire. It was to Captain Castle's keensightedness and good judgment that I am indebted for the first information obtained of the enemy's position and movements in the Shenandoah Valley on July 21.
*To appear in Atlas.
207 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
His discoveries were made known to the commanding general at that time.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
L. B. NORTON,
Captain, and Chief Signal Officer, Army of the Potomac.
Brigadier General S. WILLIAMS,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Army of the Potomac.
No. 18. Report of Captain William J. L. Nicodemus, Signal Officer. GEORGETOWN, D. C., July 21, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that, in obedience to Special Orders, Numbers 106, dated Office of the Signal Officer, Washington, July 6, 1863, I reported to General French, at Frederick.
July 7. -On the 7th instant, with 12 officers and 27 enlisted men, General French ordered me to report to General Meade, who ordered me to the front, then the South Mountain Pass; ordered Lieutenants [Charles] Herzog and [Thomas P.] Rushby to Maryland Heights; Lieutenant Fisher to Crampton's Pass; Captain Daniels, with Captain Denicke and Lieutenants [William J.] Galbraith, Briggs, Denicke, Swain, and [S. Cary] Tuckerman, to the front, with the following instructions: You will open communication between Frederick City and South Mountain Pass, and establish observation stations to command the Boonsborough Valley.
July 8. -Left Frederick City on the 8th instant, accompanied by Captain McCreary. Lieutenant [William S.] Andrews being sick, was left at Frederick City, with orders to report to me as soon as able. Broke up stations along the route as fast as Morse's telegraph communication was established. Captain Daniels opened communication at 12 m. between battle-field and South Mountain station. Result of the day's fighting was driving the enemy to Beaver Creek Bridge, on Boonsborough and Hagerstown pike, 3, 5 miles north of Boonsborough. All movements of the enemy were observed from Washington Monument, on South Mountain, by Captain [Ernst A.] and Lieutenant [C. F. M.] Denicke, and promptly reported to the different headquarters concerned.
July 9. -General Buford on the 9th drove the enemy about 2 miles. A line signal stations commanded the enemy's front. A timely report of Captain McCreary prevented our left from being flanked this day. July 10. -Heavy skirmishing on the left; enemy driven to Funkstown; his dispositions accurately reported to the general commanding. July 11. -Captain McCreary reported: Enemy falling back, breaking up camps at Hagerstown, and moving toward Williamsport, trains going in direction of Shepherdstown. Condition of enemy's intrenchments at Funkstown reported by Captain Daniels.
July 12. -Enemy driven to intrenchments west and southwest of Hagerstown, and signal stations established in different parts of the town, 9. 30 a. m.
208 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
July 13. -Progress of the enemy's earthworks reported. No fighting. July 14. -Evacuation of the enemy reported at 4 a. m. by Captain Daniels. At 9. 30 a. m. reported to General Couch near Chambersburg: Enemy crossing at Williamsport; Army of the Potomac in close pursuit. This message reached General Couch five hours before General Meade's dispatch to that effect. At 10. 30 a. m. reported to General Averell at Chambersburg, who reported at once to General Kelley at Fairview. General Kelley at once threw his whole force in motion for Williamsport. On arriving at Williamsport, found the enemy had succeeded in crossing the river; drew in my party, and returned to the signal camp of instruction on the 17th instant. I forward reports of the officers of my command, except of Lieutenant Andrews, left sick at Frederick, and Captain and Lieutenant Denicke, ordered to report to General Kelley at Hancock. The reports of the last two will be forwarded as soon as practicable. I transmit herewith a few of the messages sent to the colonel commanding not mentioned in the reports of Captain Daniels and Lieutenant Swain. In conclusion, I would add that the weather was exceedingly unfavorable for signals; that the party, officers and men, worked cheerfully and hard, and that I am particularly indebted to Captains Daniels and McCreary and Lieutenant Swain for what was accomplished.
Very respectfully, sir, your obedient servant,
WM. J. L. NICODEMUS,
Captain, &c., Commanding.
Captain H. S. TAFFT,
Numbers 19. Report of Captain Nahum Daniels, Signal Officer.
GEORGETOWN, D. C.,
July 18, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report: Agreeably to orders received at Frederick, Md., July 7, at 6 p. m. I started with Captain Denicke, Lieutenants Denicke, Galbraith, Briggs, and Swain to open communication by signals from the advance of our army, then near Boonsborough, to Frederick. I left Lieutenant Galbraith at South Mountain Pass, with instructions to open an intermediate station at that point between Frederick and Washington Monument. On the morning of the 8th instant, I ordered Captain Denicke and Lieutenant Denicke to open a station on Washington Monument; also procured a detail of men to cut away the timber which obstructed the view near the monument. At 8 a. m. I ordered Lieutenant Swain to open a station at Boonsborough, then our extreme advance. Lieutenant Briggs also proceeded to open a station on the Blue [Elk] Ridge, about 4 miles from Boonsborough. At 10 a. m. our forces commenced skirmishing with the enemy. I immediately proceeded to the front, and opened communication with the Washington Monument, about 1 mile from Boonsborough. on the Hagerstown pike. I directed Lieutenant
209 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Swain to take charge of the station at this point. At 11 a. m. I sent the following message to Captain Nicodemus: Our advance is engaged with Frederick. It being now quite clear, I ordered Captain Denicke to report by signal to me the movements of the enemy, which I reported to the commanding officer in front. Our forces were now engaged a distance of 3 miles in front. Lieutenant Swain remained at his post receiving messages, subject to a severe fire. I cannot too highly mention his bearing while under fire. At 1 p. m. the engagement became quite warm, Captain Denicke reporting constantly to me the every movement of the enemy, which was immediately reported to General Buford, while he by such reports was enabled to be fully prepared to meet every movement of the enemy, knowing in advance what their force was, and the kind of force. At 3 p. m., finding that communication was not open to Frederick, i ordered Lieutenant Denicke to assist Lieutenant Galbraith in opening through to that place. The following messages were sent to General Buford:
The enemy are advancing in front and on our right. A large cavalry force in front.
General BUFORD: Infantry are advancing on our right.
Enemy are advancing; skirmishing on our right.
Enemy have just placed a battery on left of road, behind a large barn.
SIGNAL STATION, NEAR BOONSBOROUGH.
Our forces are now hotly engaged with the enemy. Send forage to Captain Denicke, now here.
Enemy's skirmishers are advancing on our right.
Enemy's cavalry pickets are 1 mile in advance.
July 10, 1863.
Three regiments of infantry are on the right of road, 2 miles above, and two trains.
14 R R-VOL XXVII, PT 1
210 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
The enemy have cavalry pickets 2 miles to our right. A wagon train is moving from there toward Frederick.
July 11, 1863.
The enemy's cavalry are crossing the creek on our left in force.
Enemy are advancing infantry across the Antietam, about 1 mile to our left.
Captain, and Signal Officer.
The enemy are advancing infantry and cavalry across the Antietam
about 1 mile to our left.
Captain, and Signal Officer.
The enemy are intrenching on the crest of a hill one-half mile east of Funkstown, and have batteries on the hill north of Funkstown, supported by infantry.
Captain, and Signal Officer.
July 13, 1863.
The enemy are intrenching on the crest of the hill 1 mile east of Funkstown, and have batteries on the hills north of Funkstown, supported by infantry.
Captain, and Signal Officer.
- 6 a. m.
Generals MEADE and SEDGWICK:
Enemy's skirmishers are advancing on our right-the right of town.
Captain, and Signal Officer.
July 15, 1863.
The enemy occupy the same position as last night. All quiet.
July 15, 1863.
The enemy are hard at work on breastworks, and placing artillery in position.
GENERAL: Citizens report siege guns northwest of town on the works.
GENERAL: I have ascertained upon good authority the position of rebel forces now in front. General Hood's headquarters are 1, 2 miles in front of the Female Seminary on the pike; General Longstreet on his right, Generals Heth and Ransom between Longstreet and the river. General Lee's headquarters near Saint James College. The enemy have a line of rifle-pits are circular redoubts, in which are placed their guns, five of which near the town are 32-pounders.
Captain, and Signal Officer.
July 14, 1863.
- At 4 a. m. discovered that the enemy had evacuated their works; tried to communicate the facts through Lieutenant
211 Chapter XXXIX] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Tuckerman by signals to Generals Meade and Sedgwick, but was unable to call him; but immediately commanding, and to Captain Nicodemus by signals at 6 a. m. I immediately ordered Lieutenants Swain and Galbraith to take their stations on the enemy's works, which they did, Lieutenant Galbraith being the first to enter them. He immediately communicated to me the fact, by signals, that the enemy had left at 2 a. m. I then proceeded to Williamsport with Lieutenants Swain, Tuckerman to open communication by signals with Falling Waters, which they nearly accomplished that night. I at the same time was trying to open with Captain Denicke at Fairview, but was unable to do so. I would most respectfully call your attention to the uniform good conduct and gallantry while under fire of Privates A. V. Richards and Edward H. Haskell, both doing their duty manfully under fire; would also state that several important messages were not taken down at the time when sent, and were forgotten. All of which I most respectfully submit.
I have the honor to remain, your obedient servant,
Captain, and Signal Officer.
Captain WILLIAM J. L. NICODEMUS,
Signal Officer. ----
Numbers 20. Report of Captain William G. McCreary, Signal Officer.
SIGNAL CAMP OF INSTRUCTION,
July 20, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of operations from July 6 to July 16, 1863, during the retreat of the rebel forces under General Lee from Maryland: I received my orders July 6, and same evening started for Frederick; arrived there on the evening of the 7th instant. On the 8th, the Army of the Potomac being on the move, I started for South Mountain, where our advance line rested. Was ordered back to Middletown by you, to open a station there. Upon my arrival there, I found General Meade had established his headquarters, and Captain Norton agreeing to relieve me with one of his officers, I returned to report to you at the pass. Early next morning, with the advance of our troops, in company with yourself, advanced beyond Boonsborough, when I was directed by you to report to the right, with the right brigade of General Buford's cavalry division, General Merritt commanding, Captain Daniels being in the center and Lieutenant Tuckerman on the left of same division, to keep open communication along the line. Soon after taking our positions, an advance was made along the line, and we advanced with them. At the crossing of Beaver Creek, the enemy were established with infantry, cavalry, and artillery, to dispute our advance, but after a severe skirmish were driven back.
212 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
Early next morning, July 10, moved forward, and drove them to Antietam, a distance of 4 miles. During this movement, I was in communication with Captain Daniels, but the rapid movements of our forces prevented sending many messages; but from our points of observation much valuable information was furnished the commanding officers, for which we received their personal thanks. On the 11th instant, I was requested by you to proceed to Black Rock, an elevated and naked rock on South Mountain Range, but on to see anything, and returned to the valley. On the 12th, again went to Black Rock, and on that day and the 13th endeavored to get communication, but in vain. On the evening of the 13th, left and went to Funkstown. Early on the morning of the 14th, received communication from Captain Daniels that the enemy had vacated their works. This communication you furnished General Howard. About 5. 15 a. m., with yourself, rode forward to their works, where Lieutenant Galbraith opened a station. At this point met some citizens who had been impressed by the rebels on the previous night and compelled to act as guides, and when within 2 miles of Williamsport had been permitted to return. Their report that there were no rebels on this side of Williamsport was transmitted to General Meade by you. After consulting you, concluded our best course was to proceed and try to get the same information to General Kelley, at Fairview. On arriving at the junction of the Fairview and Greencastle turnpike, an orderly, Private Voohees, of the Sixth New York Cavalry, who had
been assigned me, was sent with dispatches to meet the Pennsylvania troops, said to be coming from Chambersburg. Near Greencastle he met the column under General Dana, who, considering the dispatches important, sent him to General Couch, at Chambersburh. General Couch thanked the signal officer for the timely information (these arrived five hours in advance of the dispatches from General Meade), and caused a rapid movement of these forces. At the Conococheague Bridge a Union paroled soldier and a rebel of the Sixth North Carolina Infantry were picked up. The former had been across the Potomac, and reported that the enemy were almost entirely across. The rebel was sent to General Kelley. On approaching Clear Spring, met the advance of General Kelley immediately moved his whole division rapidly in the direction of Williamsport. After resting our horses, we followed, overtaking the column, and arrived at Williamsport to find the enemy gone, as we had reported. Although the weather was such that but comparatively little could be accomplished by signals, yet I received the personal thanks of General Merritt, Kelley, and Averell for much valuable and reliable information furnished them. From this point returned to camp. The following are some of the communications sent and received:
A battery of the enemy is visible on the crest of the hill. I can also see bayonets, indicating that it is supported by infantry. No cavalry visible except pickets.
213 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Three squadrons of rebel cavalry have passed to our right, and are concealed behind the woods. We have not any skirmishers in that direction.
TO COMMANDER OF THE RIGHT:
Cease firing in your front. Captain McCreary, signal officer, reports three squadrons of cavalry passing to your right. Throw out skirmishers, and keep a sharp lookout to prevent being flanked.
General Howard wishes to know anything relative to the enemy's movements in front.
T. R. CLARK.
All quiet. Enemy are throwing up earthworks near Antietam Creek.
Our cavalry are retiring from the right. The enemy's cavalry and infantry are advancing on the left.
The enemy are reported by a citizen from within their lines to have broken up their camps, and to be moving all their wagon trains toward Falling Waters.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. G. McCREARY,
Captain, Signal Corps, U. S. Army.
Captain WILLIAM J. L. NICODEMUS,
Signal Officer. ---
Numbers 21. Report of Lieutenant George A. Fisher, Acting Signal Officer.
GEORGETOWN, D. C., July 18, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of duty performed since July 6, 1863: On the evening of the 6th, was ordered to precede the main party, with Lieutenants Herzog and Rushby, and with our men accompany and guard the wagon train to Frederick, Md., where we arrived on the 8th instant, and immediately reported to you at your headquarters. About an hour afterward I received orders from you to proceed without delay to Crampton's Gap, in the South Mountain Range, and open communication with Middletown, Maryland Heights, and South Mountain, if possible, and take observations of the movements of the enemy. I endeavored that evening to open communication, but was unable to find a point where I could see more than one of the stations, and, after calling Maryland Heights for some time, was obliged to give it up for the night. Early next morning I moved across the gap, and proceeded along the ridge about 3 miles, and selected a station from which,
with some labor, I was enabled to communicate with both Middletown and Maryland Heights, thus completing the line of stations between Maryland Heights and Hagerstown.
214 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
On the 12th instant, Captains [Joseph] Gloskoski and [Richard] Dinsmore received orders from Captain Norton to close up the station at Middletown and rejoin his command. I was then obliged to find some other station with which to keep up the line of communication, and was enable to do so with Lieutenant Briggs, who was at ELK Ridge, in communication with South Mountain. owing to the state od the weather, for the most of the time we were unable to take many observations, but embraced every opportunity that presented itself. I submit a few of the messages transmitted:
MARYLAND HEIGHTS, July 14, 1863.
our troops crossed and reoccupied Harper's Ferry and Bolivar Heights to-day. Can see no indication or movement of any troops in or near Martinsburg.
July 15, 1863.
Captain NICODEMUS: All quiet at Maryland Heights; very few troops here.
July 15, I was ordered to close up station and report to you at Frederick without delay.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. A. FISHER,
Lieutenant, Acting Signal Officer. ---
No. 22. Report of Lieutenant Ephraim A. Briggs, Acting Signal Officer.
INSTRUCTION CAMP, U. S. SIGNAL CORPS,
July 19, 1863.
CAPTAIN: In compliance with an order received this morning to make an official report of all duty performed by me as acting signal officer of the Washington Reserve Signal Corps since the 6th instant, I submit the following: At 5 p. m. of the 6th instant, I received orders to be prepared to leave camp with the party going to the front for active duty in the field. At 8 p. m. the 6th instant, said party left camp, Georgetown, D. C., proceeding toward Frederick, riding all night, arriving at Frederick, Md., 5 p. m. of the 7th instant, when I was ordered to proceed toward South Mountain without delay, in company with Captain N. Daniels. We proceeded to South Mountain, opening signal station on the Washington Monument at 9 a. m. of the 8th instant, the heavy rain falling all night preventing its being sooner accomplished. By order of Captain Daniels, I proceeded to Elk Mountain to open signal station communication with one on Washington Monument. Arriving at Elk Mountain 11 a. m., I opened station, and called Monument until 1 p. m. ; had no reply; atmosphere was clear. I saw the enemy's pickets within 2 miles of this point. At 2. 30 p. m., commenced and called Monument all the afternoon, excepting from 44 p. m. until
215 Chapter XXXIX] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
5. 30 p. m., without receiving reply; 4 p. m. received following message by orderly: To Signal Officer: Ascertain and send immediate report whether the rebels are in Sharpsburg or Keedysville. Their evident intention is to take Sharpsburg. Make report in writing, and send by orderly.
A. B. JEROME,
First Lieutenant, and Acting Assistant Signal Officer.
At 4. 15 p. m. sent following answer:
I can see no signs of enemy occupying Sharpsburg or Keedysville. Their cavalry were in both places this morning, I am informed by reliable citizens. If you can communicate with Washington Monument, tell them to answer my call.
E. A. BRIGGS,
First Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
At 9 p. m. returned to Boonsborough, and procured rations and forage for my men and animals, oil, &c.
At 10. 30 a. m., received following by orderly:
Proceed to station on Elk Ridge, which you occupied last night, and communicate with station one-half mile northeast of Boonsborough. If you cannot see that station, communicate with the Monument.
Captain, Signal Officer.
July 9. -The day smoky; not able to do anything.
July 10. - Called the Monument from 8. 30 a. m. hour and thirty minutes before any reply.
At 3 a. m. received from Monument signal station:
TO ELK MOUNTAIN:
You will go to the gap, and open with Bakersville and the white flag at the foot of the Monument.
By order of-
In obedience to above, I spent from that time till 6 p. m. answering and swinging, as I saw three or four white flags swinging in vicinity of Bakersville, though facing too much to my right. Swung torch during the evening without any success. Called the Monument to report I was not able to communicate with Bakersville; after an hour's work, gave them up.
July 11. -The morning thick and hazy. Clear at 10. 30 a. m. At 1 p. m. received from Washington Monument:
I want communication with Maryland Heights, through Boonsborough and Lieutenant Fisher.
5 p. m. - Sent from Elk Mountain:
I have seen Fisher, at Crampton's Pass, and have with Maryland Heights when atmosphere permits.
E. A. BRIGGS,
Lieutenant, Acting Signal Officer.
216 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
10 p. m. - Sent from Elk Mountain:
Maryland Heights are in full view of this point, or at Crampton's house. On this range, both Maryland Heights and Monument are to be seen from this point excepting at Dam No. 4.
E. A. BRIGGS,
Lieutenant, Acting Signal Officer.
Through messenger, I called Monument till 12 a. m. and got no reply, and sent it by an orderly.
July 12. - Thick and excessively smoky all day; not able to see anything.
12 m. -Received by Orderly Knapp:
You will open signal station on Elk Mountain, beyond Keedysville, communicating with Maryland Heights, Crampton's Pass, Washington Monument, and, when Downsville station is open, with Fairview. You will report to me through Washington Monument station, or in any way possible. My headquarters are with the right wing. Answer all flags. You will be relieved when station is not needed.
Captain, Signal Officer.
Sent the following at 1 p. m.:
My men are in need of rations and my animals of forage. Please light a fire at 9 p. m., that I may find your locality. In order to run this station successfully, requires more men.
Your obedient servant,
Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
3. 30 p. m. - Heavy shower until 5. 30 p. m. Worked until 12 m. Could not get the Monument. Went to bed.
July 13. -Day rainy and thick. Cut the timber and bushed from top of mountain, so as to command all points. Built a tower. Had calls from several signal officers of Army of the Potomac viewing the country and Antietam battle-ground.
ELK MOUNTAIN, 12 m.
The weather has prevented my getting Bakersville or Downsville. Communication to Maryland Height is perfect. I tried to communicate with you via the Monument yesterday without any success.
E. A. BRIGGS,
Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
July 14, 8 a. m. -Sent from Elk Mountain:
Captain Norton orders me to Crampton's house, on this range of mountains. I await your order.
Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
Kept a close watch all day for flags, and till 1 a. m. july 15 for lights near Mount Moriah or Donnellies Hill.
8. 30 p. m. - Received from Fisher, at Crampton's Pass:
Our troops crossed and reoccupied Harper's Ferry and Bolivar Heights. Saw Martinsburg to-day; no movement to indicate troops there.
Lieutenant. and Acting Signal Officer.
217 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Called Monument one hour, and closed up, unable to forward the message.
July 15. -Smoky all morning and afternoon. Orderly brought following message: Lieutenants Herzog, Rushby, Briggs, and Fisher with parties, will report to me at Frederick without delay.
Captain, Signal Officer Comdg.
Washington Reserve Signal Party.
Sent same to Lieutenant Fisher without any delay, and immediately repaired to Frederick and awaited further orders.
July 17, 12 m. -Party left Frederick, proceeding toward Rockville; at Nielsville, by order of Captain Nicodemus, I remained there until the wagon train came up and took charge of them, not going in camp until next morning. Arose at 3 a. m., prepared for an early start on the road at 5 a. m., moved moderately, reaching Georgetown, D. C., at 12. 30 p. m. of 18th instant. I would most respectfully mention Private Temple for his untiring attention to duties on station and uniform good behavior. Private Boynton seems to be a most willing man, ever ready, but lacking experience. I would also say I never have been found absent from post.
I am yours respectfully,
E. A. BRIGGS,
Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
Captain WILLIAM J. L. NICODEMUS,
Numbers 23. Report of Lieutenant Julius M Swain, Acting Signal Officer.
GEORGETOWN, D. C., July 18, 1863.
CAPTAIN: I beg leave to submit the following report, which I regret contains but an imperfect record of the messages sent while with the signal party recently under your command in Maryland: I had the misfortune to lose my memorandum book containing a copy of the messages sent to General Buford from station near Boonsborough during the engagement on the afternoon of the 8th instant, as well as some others of later date. I accordance, with your orders, I left Frederick on the evening of the 7th instant, and proceeded to South Mountain Gap, in company with Captain Denicke, at which point we were ordered to report to Captain Daniels, July 8. We arrived at 3 a. m., and as it was raining very hard and Captain Daniels could not be found, we lay by till daylight. Captain Daniels arrived at the Mountain House at 8 o'clock, and as soon as the weather would permit, about 9 a. m., I was ordered to Boonsborough, where I arrived at 10 o'clock, and reported to General Kilpatrick, after which I opened station on hill in rear of town, which commanded a good view of our front. Saw the enemy's battery open on us at 10. 30 a. m., and shortly afterward, when they changed position and advanced toward Boonsborough by the pike, reported fact to commanding officer.
218 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
At 12 m. Captain Daniels opened station near the Hagerstown pike, about 1 miles beyond Boonsborough, and ordered me to join him, which I did at once. I remained there during the day in communication with Captain Denicke, on Washington Monument, whose station overlooked the enemy, and sent frequent messages from him to General Buford, then in command. At 3 p. m. sent the following:
Lieutenant Denicke will open communication between you and Frederick.
July 9. - Enemy retreated last evening about 2 miles toward Funkstown, and Captain Daniels went to front this morning, leaving me on the station opened yesterday. On your arrival, about noon, your ordered me to send frequent dispatches to Colonel Myer at Washington, apprising him of all movements of interest.
BOONSBOROUGH, July 9-7. 30 p. m.
Heavy skirmishing has just opened about 3 miles from here, on Hagerstown road.
July 10. -Removed station to hill near Boonsborough, and opened communication with Lieutenant Tuckerman on left of our line, with Captain Denicke on Monument, and Captain Stone on Sharpsburg pike, near General French's headquarters. Received orders report all important messages by telegraph to General Meade and Colonel Myer. During the day sent the following telegrams:
BOONSBOROUGH, July 10-7 a. m.
Colonel ALBERT J. MYER:
Heavy skirmishing has just commenced about 4 miles from here, toward Williamsport. The Sixth Army Corps is in advance, on way to front.
SIGNAL STATION NEAR BOONSBOROUGH,
July 10-8 a. m.
Colonel ALBERT J. MYER:
The skirmishing has become quite general, with heavy artillery firing. The First Corps just passed here, on way to front.
BOONSBOROUGH, July 10-10 a. m.
Colonel ALBERT J. MYER:
Heavy firing still continues near Funkstown. In my dispatch of this morning, I should have said Hagerstown instead of Williamsport.
BOONSBOROUGH, July 10-11. 30 a. m.
Has been no firing for an hour. Eleventh Corps, General Howard, just passed, and have taken the Williamsport road. The men are in excellent spirits.
219 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
BOONSBOROUGH-1 p. m.
Colonel ALBERT J. MYER:
Our right has driven the enemy to Funkstown, 2 miles from Hagerstown.
3. 30 p. m. Colonel ALBERT J. MYER:
The infantry relieved the cavalry at 2 p. m. Sharp Firing since. The enemy still occupies Funkstown and the crossing of the Big Antietam.
Boonsborough-6 p. m.
I have been informed by the citizens that it is reported a large amount of ammunition is expected by the rebs to-day from Richmond. By order of Major-General French:
C. F. STONE,
Captain, and Signal Officer.
July 11, agreeably to your order, I reported to you at station 1 mile east of Funkstown with party this noon. Remained on your station during afternoon and night. I had communication with Lieutenant Galbraith, and with Captain [William H.] Hill and Lieutenant [Isaac S.] Lyon, of Fifth Corps.
STATION NEAR FUNKSTOWN, July 12, 1863-8. 30 p. m.
Our line has crossed the creek beyond Funkstown.
Sent copy of above to General Meade. Remained on station till 9. 30 a. m., when your ordered me to follow you to Hagerstown. Arrived there at 10 o'clock, just as the enemy was shelling our battery near seminary, after their rear had passed out of town. Opened station nearly 1 mile beyond seminary, at right of Greencastle pike, but, not having a good situation, I moved by your permission to the northwest of Hagerstown, near Catholic cemetery, where I had an excellent view of all movements on our right.
At 12 m. I sent you the following by orderly:
STATION NEAR HAGERSTOWN.
I made a circuit after I left you till I came in sight of enemy's left; then I placed my party in the hollow, and watched them over the hill. Their left is advancing slowly but surely, and now occupies ground which I left within half an hour. I sent note to Captain Oliphant, commanding Fifth Michigan Cavalry, who are the outer vedettes. From what I can see I think the rebels are in considerable force over the crest of the hill. We can see them here with the naked eye. My flag is behind the hill, though in plain sight of you at left of Catholic cemetery.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JULIUS M. SWAIN,
Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
At 3 p. m. I notified you that about 500 cavalry had come down the hill toward me, a portion of whom were in line of battle; also that I saw 20 mounted men, with axes, ride rapidly to right of our line. At 5. 30 p. m. I sent you the following:
SIGNAL STATION-5. 30 p. m.
Captain NICODEMUS:For two hours before the rain I saw a commanding officer, with low black hat and heavy black beard, with his staff and orderlies, 24 in number. He was evi-
dently making a reconnaissance, and now I see his headquarters are pitched on crest of the hill, in plain sight. About 500 cavalry are massed in front, and their picket line is very strong. Commanding officers are now evidently directing their movements, and I see three squads on the hill, where the officers are pointing to our right and making various gestures. It looks as if the cavalry were preparing to make a charge into town. The "graybacks" are getting very impudent, and are firing on our skirmishers in all directions, especially on extreme right, where they have been quiet all day. Since I commenced to write, the cavalry I spoke of have mounted, and seem to be in readiness for a move. A citizen, whom I saw a mile from here, tells me that the enemy has a line of intrenchments just over hill, as he was there yesterday and saw the works.
JULIUS M. SWAIN,
Lieutenant, and Acting Signal Officer.
July 13. -Notified you at 6 a. m. that the enemy was hard at work throwing up breastworks, and later in the forenoon sent you a message that they had placed three sections of battery in position, bearing about 30 degrees east of north, in a direction to repel an attack from our right. Notified you several times during the day of the progress of the enemy's work.
At 7. 30 p. m. sent the following message:
Our cavalry, under General Kilpatrick, who were massed in the hollow on our right, were forced to retire when about to charge on the enemy.
Rained nearly all night, and on the morning of the 14th was hazy till 6 o'clock, when we discovered that the enemy had abandoned his works. Sent you message to that effect, and was ordered to open station on the hill recently occupied by them. Proceeded there at once, and in half an hour was ordered to report to you at Williamsport, in company with Lieutenant Galbraith. On my arrival, was ordered to Falling Waters, and at 3. 30 opened station there, and communicated with Captain Daniels at Williamsport.
Sent following message:
No signs of the enemy. They all crossed here before noon. Remained on station till 7. 30 p. m., when I found that I could not communicate with any one, as the station at Williamsport had been broken up.
July 15. -Reported to camp near Funkstown, and was ordered by Captain McCreary to return to Hagerstown, to rest the horses and remain till party came up.
July 16. -Came to Frederick, where we spent the night.
July 17. -Returned to signal camp, Georgetown, D. C. Before closing this report, I wish to call your attention to Private Ezra M. Chaffee, Sixth Michigan Cavalry, Company F, who acted as orderly eight days, and by his promptness, strict attention to duty, and cheerful disposition rendered me much assistance. I respectfully recommend that he be detailed for duty in this corps, as I feel that he would make an excellent flagman.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JULIUS M. SWAIN,
Second Lieutenant Thirty-ninth Massachusetts Vols.,
Acting Signal Officer.
Captain WILLIAM J. L. NICODEMUS,
221 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Numbers 24. Reports of Brigadier General Rufus Ingalls, U. S. Army, Chief Quartermaster. *
HEADQUARTERS ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
Camp near Culpeper, Va., September 29, 1863.
GENERAL: In compliance with your General Orders, No. 13, of July 22 last, I have the honor to submit the following report on the operation of the quartermaster's department of the Army of the Potomac during the fiscal year ending June 30:
On June 14, we broke up our headquarters camp near Falmouth, and pursued the route by Dumfries, Fairfax, Leesburg, Edwards Ferry and Poolesville, to Frederick City, on our second Maryland Campaign. The army was in excellent condition, and transportation was perfect, and our sources of supply same as in first campaign. The officers in our department were thoroughly trained in their duties. It was almost as easy to maneuver the trains as the troops. It is, therefore, unnecessary to go further into the details of the march. The rebel army had again invaded Maryland, and had even advanced as far as Carlisle and York, in Pennsylvania. The Army of the Potomac was again in pursuit of its inveterate foe, and finally met him in pitched battle of three days' fighting, and compelled him to again recross the Potomac. General Meade, justly the conqueror and hero of Gettysburg, assumed commend of the army on June 28. On the last day of the fiscal year, two days later, I was at Taneytown, with headquarters of the army.
THE QUARTERMASTER-GENERAL OF THE ARMY.
OFFICE OF CHIEF QUARTERMASTER,
ARMIES OPERATING AGAINST RICHMOND,
City Point, Va., August 28, 1864.
GENERAL: In compliance with your General Orders, Numbers 29, of the 6th ultimo, calling for an annual report for the fiscal year ending June 30, I have the honor to submit the following:
On July 1, the headquarters remained at that point [Taneytown, Md.], while the army was being concentrated at Gettysburg. The First and Eleventh Corps opened the great battle of Gettysburg on that day. The wagon trains and all impedimenta had been assembled at Westminster, on the pike and railroad leading to Baltimore, at a distance of about 25 miles in rear of the army. No baggage was allowed in front. Officers and men went forward without tents and
*Extracts from annual reports.
222 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
with only a short supply of food. A portion only of the ammunition wagons and ambulances was brought up to the immediate rear of our lines. This arrangement, which is always made in this army on the eve of battle and marches in presence of the enemy, enables experienced and active officers to supply their commands without risking the loss of trains or obstructing roads over which the columns march. Empty wagons can be sent to the rear, and loaded ones, or pack trains, brought up during the night, or at such times and places as will not interfere with the movements of troops. On this campaign, from the Rappahannock to the James, our trains, large as they were necessarily, being over four thousand heavy wagons, never delayed the march of a column, and, excepting small ammunition trains, were never seen by our troops. The main trains were conducted on roads to our rear and left without the loss of a wagon. On the morning of July 2, I arrived at Gettysburg, and was present during the battle which resulted so favorably to our arms. Arrangements were made to issue supplies at Westminster, brought over the branch road from Baltimore, and at Frederick by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. Telegraphic communications extended from these points to Baltimore, washington, &c., and our army communicated every third hour with them by means of relays of cavalry couriers. Ample supplies of forage, clothing, and subsistence were received and issued to fill every necessary want without in any instance retarding military movements. All stores thrown forward over these routes and not issued were returned to the main depot at washington, and again forwarded on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad after the army had crossed to the south side of the Potomac. After the retreat of the rebel army from Gettysburg, General Meade on July 6 ordered the concentration of the Army of the Potomac at Middletown on the evening of the 7th. The trains were directed to join their respective corps; all those that were at westminster to pass through Frederick, to enable them to fill up with supplies. The headquarters were in Frederick, the night of the 6th. The army was moved on the 9th from Middletown to the vicinity of Boonsborough. The order of the day directed that no trains but ammunition wagons, medical wagons, and ambulances should accompany the troops. Supply and baggage wagons were to be parked in the Middletown Valley, on the roads taken by their respective corps. No special guards were to be left with the trains. Every man able to do duty was required to be in the ranks. It was here known to the general commanding that the enemy had not crossed to the south bank, as had been rumored, but was in force, and intrenched on the north bank, from Williamsport to Shepherdstown; hence the precautions in regard to the trains and preparations for battle. On the 10th, 11th, 12th, and 13th, the army of the Potomac was engaged in taking up positions in front of the enemy and in making reconnaissance. During this time the trains remained in Middletown Valley. Our headquarters were on the Antietam, upon the road from Boonsborough to Williamsport. The army was kept supplied with all that was absolutely essential and nothing more. At our headquarters, for example, we only had a few tent flies, blankets, a few small portable paper cases, and two or three days' cooked food. On the night of the 13th, the rebel army crossed into Virginia. This fact was well established in the mind of the general commanding the
223 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Army of the Potomac by 12 o'clock on the 14th. He issued orders on that day, moving the army on the 15th as follows: The Twelfth and Second Corps to move [by way] of Downsville, Bakersville, Mercersville, Sharpsburg, and the Antietam Iron Works, and encamp in Pleasant Valley, near Harper's Ferry. The Fifth and First Corps by Williamsport and Boonsborough road between the Sharpsburg pike and the Antietam to Keedysville; thence through Fox's Gap to Burkittsville by the road nearest the mountain (the shortest road), and thence to Berlin. The Sixth and Eleventh Corps, via Funkstown and Boonsborough, through Turner's Gap to Middletown; thence to Petersville and Berlin. The Artillery Reserve to move by way of Boonsborough pike, through turner's Gap to Middletown, and thence to the vicinity of Berlin by Petersville; to take precedence as far as Middletown, after which to march between the Sixth and Eleventh Corps. The trains to join their respective corps at their camps in the vicinity of Harper's Ferry and Berlin. The corps to move in the order named, and the corps in advance to march at early daylight, and to be followed by the next corps when the road is clear. Headquarters to be at berlin on the night of the 15th. I have indicated this movement of the 15th in detail in order to exhibit in this report the usual manner of moving a large army and concentrating it at a particular point. On the 16th, orders were issued to the army to replenish its supplies from the depots which I had established at Berlin, Sandy Hook, and Harper's Ferry, and to be quickly prepared to continue the march with three days' cooked rations in haversacks, three days' hard bread and small rations in the regimental wagons, and, in addition, two days' salt meat and seven days' hard bread and small rations in the wagons of the supply trains. The army was supplied with clothing, fresh horses, and mules. Our lines of supply were the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal and Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. The supplies furnished here were expected to answer until we could reach the Manassas Gap road at Gainesville and White Plains, and the Warrenton branch at Warrenton. The Third and Fifth corps having crossed into the Piney Run Valley near Lovettsville, the rest of the army followed on the 18th and 19th. The Second and Twelfth Corps crossed at Harper's Ferry, and the First, Sixth, and Eleventh Corps, Artillery Reserve, and headquarters at Berlin, each command followed by its own trains. The rear guard of the cavalry crossed at both points after the Sixth and Twelfth Corps. It will be seen by reference to my last annual report that General McClellan made the passage of this river at the same points with the same army, marching in the same direction, in pursuit of the same enemy, on the last of October and first of November the preceding year. General Meade pursued the same routes as far as Warrenton as were taken by the army in November, 1862. Some of his corps deviated somewhat and made demonstrations at Manassas Gap, &c., but not materially different in results from the year before. I left the army at Berlin, and went to Washington to make arrangements for supplies over the Orange and Alexandria Railroad. Having perfected the arrangements and submitted requisitions, I proceeded by rail to White Plains, ; o; n the Manassas Gap Railroad, on the 24th, and rejoined headquarters at Warrenton on the evening of the 25th.
The campaign ended here, and our army shortly took up a line across the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, near the Rappahannock, the right of our infantry resting at the Waterloo Crossing, the left at Ellis' Ford. Cavalry was on both flanks and in rear. Our lines of communications were protected by the Department of Washington to the Bull Run Bridge, and by the Eleventh Corps from that point to Catlett's. The headquarters were at Germantown, on the railroad, about 3, 05 miles south of Warrenton Junction. The depots were established at Warrenton Junction, Warrenton, and Bealeton. The army remained in this position quietly until the middle of September.
I am, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,
Brigadier-General, and Chief Quartermaster,
Armies operating against Richmond.
Bvt. Major General M. C. MEIGS,
Quartermaster-General, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.
Numbers 25. Report of Brigadier General Marsena R. Patrick, U. S. Army, Provost, Marshal-General.
October 4, 1863.
Estimate of captures from the enemy during their raid into Pennsylvania, in June and July, 1863.
Where Confined Officers Enlist. men
Fort Delaware 417 7, 244
De Camp General Hosp. David's Island, N. Y. 65 2, 472
West Buildings, Baltimore, Md. 51 632
United States hospital, Chester, Pa. 83 1, 049
United States hospital, Gettysburg, Pa 112 1, 235
United States hospital, Harrisburg, Pa 14 111
United States hospital, Frederick, Md. 12 124
Total 754 12, 867
I have consulted Colonel Hoffman, commissary-general of prisoners, who makes up the above as the closest estimate that can be made of captures on the north side of the Potomac. Of those at Fort Delaware, many were sick and wounded, but in general able to travel. Colonel Hoffman thinks these might amount to 700. Respectfully submitted.
M. R. PATRICK,
225 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Numbers 26. Report of Lieutenant John R. Edie, Acting Chief Ordnance Officer, Army of the Potomac.
REPORT OF ORDNANCE AND ORDNANCE STORES COLLECTED ON THE BATTLE-FIELD OF GETTYSBURG, AND SHIPPED TO THE WASHINGTON ARSENAL.
Lieutenant Morris Schaff, Ordnance Department:
Muskets . 19, 664
Bayonets . 9, 250
Small-arm ammunition rounds 14, 000
Cartridge-boxes 1, 200
Sabers . 300
Artillery wheels 26
Lieutenant William J. Augustine, First Division, Twelfth Army Corps: Muskets 804
Cartridge-box belts 250
Cartridge-box plates . 400
Waist-belt plates 100
Lieutenant Edward H. Newcomb, Third Division, Eleventh Army Corps: Muskets 1, 142
Bayonets . 581
Captain George A. Batchelder, First Division, Fifth Army Corps: Muskets 800
Captain James G. Derrickson, First Division, Second Army Corps: Muskets 425
Cartridge-boxes . 50
Sabers . 2
Cartridge-box belts . 50
Lieutenant W. E. Potter, Third Division, Second Army Corps: Muskets 339
Bayonets . 110
Captain G. M. Elliott, Second Division, Twelfth Army Corps: Muskets 1, 680
Bayonets . 639
Captain W. E. Graves, Tenth New York Cavalry:
Cartridge-boxes . 84
Carbines . 114
Swivels . 82
Saber-belts . 10
15 R R-VOL XXVII, PT I
226 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
Captain John Dessauer:
Saber-belts . 10
Caissons and limbers . 2
Captain Hall, Second Maine Battery:
JNO. R. EDIE,
Lieutenant Acting Chief Ordnance Officer, Army Potomac.
Numbers 27. Report of Brigadier General Henry W. Benham, U. S. Army, commanding Engineer Brigade.
HEADQUARTERS ENGINEER BRIGADE,
NEAR NAVY YARD, WASHINGTON,
Engineer Depot, June 18, 1863-8 a. m.
I have the honor to make the following brief report of my operations since the receipt of the order to take up the bridges on the Rappahannock on the 13th instant: I was down at the crossing with my men and teams about 9 p. m., when I had been notified that all would be across. The crossing commenced, however, only at about 10 p. m., and at about 11. 10 I was notified by General Newton that one bridge could be taken up, and at about 12. 10 that the second could be taken up, and at about 12. 10 that the second could be removed. The troops however, continued to straggle down for nearly three hours after, boats being sent over for them. Although the night was a part of the time intensely dark, the two bridges were taken up, and I saw the last chess loaded at about 4 a. m. The last pontoon was specially reported to me to be on its truck, and every truck with its pontoon, some delay being caused by hunting up the pontoons, which the men of the crossing force, as reported to me, had left adrift after crossing their commands. The bridge train closed upon our old camp-ground about 5 a. m., and, after the necessary feeding of the teams, started at once for Aquia Creek, I myself preceding them, reaching that station about 8 a. m., in time to obtain a boat and go with the regular battalion to Occoquan to see the bridge laid there, which was completed at about 5 p. m. of the 14th, or one hour earlier than the order required. The fact being reported through General Slocum, I at once returned to Aquia Creek, and found that the pontoons, having been delayed by the blocking of the road by the teams of the Sixth Corps, which had started before the bridges were up, had only been able to reach Aquia Creek late in the afternoon, and I learned from General Warren that General Butterfield, fearing they would obstruct or be too late to join the other trains of the army on the left [right] bank, had ordered they should be crossed to Liverpool Point, on the right [left] bank of the Potomac, for passage to Alexandria. As I found the road very bad at Occoquan Bridge, and thought it much better 2 miles below, I telegraphed to you about 9 p. m. that I would hold a
227 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
long bridge ready until 8 o'clock the next morning. Between 11 and 12 p. m. General Warren informed me that this bridge was desired, and I had it started with a proper working force, to reach the bar of the Occoquan about daylight. I then remained at Aquia until 11 a. m. of the 15th, until several hours after the mass of the pontoons had left for Washington, and until about one-half of the land transportation had been crossed to Liverpool Point, when I proceeded to Alexandria, to arrange for the arrival and proper disposition of the command. The regulars and the Fiftieth Regiment arrived about noon of the 16th, I received an order to have a bridge of 1, 200 feet in the Georgetown Canal by daylight on the 17th, which I at once directed the whole command to prepare, it requiring much time to unload trucks and rearrange the boats for passing the locks. The regular engineers were assigned to the duty of laying this bridge. About 2 a. m. of the 17th, I received a dispatch directing the bridge to be laid at Noland's Ford by noon of the 18th, and, it appearing necessary by this dispatch, I ordered 250 more men of the Fiftieth to accompany the bridge. The wording of the dispatch left me to believe I was to go up also, leaving my trains here until otherwise advised, since by the time I could prepare the orders for the additional men, &c., the last of the boats had started for Georgetown, so that I was not able to send the last information to Captain [Charles N.] Turnbull. The men of the Fiftieth, however, though delayed some two hours by the fault or misunderstanding of a steamer captain, were started at about 8 a. m. Captain Turnbull was fortunately up with his boats, all in the canal, about 6 a. m., and he wrote me that he was putting them trough the set of locks then above, which was what I expected and desired. Between 5 and 6 a. m. I sent to the quartermaster to have teams arranged to tow them up the canal, but was told I must send to Washington for them, and the delay of the boats, as above, made it necessary to send a staff officer by land to Washington; and about 10 a. m. he was able to arrange for the teams, which reached the upper locks about 12. 30 o'clock. Captain Turnbull, as he states, as no direct order had been given (in fact, though it was sent, it had not been pressed forward to him because he reported he was doing it), and because his men were fatigued, stopped the passing of his boats through the locks, so they did not all get through till 1 to 2 p. m., when the teams were connected as fast as possible, and the boats moved off rapidly before 3 p. m., and with every prospect of being at Noland's Ford by the hour originally ordered. No delay on the part of any of this command has occurred, unless possibly one or two hours were lost by stopping the passage of the boats through the locks, which had been reported to me as going on, as above stated. On returning to this depot, about 5 p. m., I found the trains from Liverpool Point coming in, having made, as reported, fully 60 miles since 10 a. m. of the preceding day, the 15th, and the ambulance train of sick and wounded had just arrived. The delay at Liverpool Point was occasioned by the large quantity of material that had to be taken from the steamers and reloaded after Aquia Creek had been actually abandoned. I am now about to bring the bridges from Alexandria to this depot for rearrangement and repairs. We have nearly 200 pontoons to ex-
228 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
amine and arrange into bridges, and about 1, 200 animals of the trains to be cared for, while the total effective force of my brigade (except the company and fractional company at work in the depot and the company at Harper's Ferry) is only about 1, 000 men, and of them nearly 600 are now up the Potomac, under Major Spaulding and Captain Turnbull, and the balance of the command, some 200 of the Fiftieth, now at Alexandria, under Colonel Pettes, and the three years' men of the Fifteenth, now being reorganized under Major Cassin, and just in here with the trains, should, as I would respectfully recommend, all be concentrated at this depot, when the services of all will be required for the care and guarding of this large number of animals and the speedy restoration of the bridges to a serviceable condition, which will be immediately reported to headquarters.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. W. BENHAM,
General S. WILLIAMS,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Army of the Potomac.
Direct the corps of engineers now at Harper's Ferry to report to Captain Turnbull, and for General Benham to concentrate the remaining part of command, now in Washington and Alexandria, to hold them at his depot, in readiness to march at shortest notice.
Telegraph this to Generals Benham and Tyler, at Sandy Hook.
SEPTEMBER. 29-6. 15 p. m.
Numbers 28. Reports of Brigadier General Henry J. Hunt, U. S. Army, Chief of Artillery, Army of the Potomac.
ARTILLERY HEADQUARTERS, ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
September 27, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of the artillery of this army in the battle of Gettysburg, July 1, 2, and 3: On July 1, Reynolds'
(First) and Howard's (Eleventh) corps and Buford's division of cavalry, the whole under the command of Major General J. F. Reynolds, engaged the enemy on the west and northwest of the town of Gettysburg. On the west of Gettysburg, about a third of a mile distant, there is a ridge running nearly north and south, parallel to the Emmitsburg pike. This ridge, on which the seminary is situated, is crossed by the Cashtown pike about 100 or 150 yards north of the seminary is a grove of large trees, and the summit of the ridge and the upper part of both its slopes are more or less covered with open woods through its entire length. The ground slopes gradually to the west, and again rising, forms a second ridge, parallel to and about 500 yards distant from the Seminary Ridge. This second ridge is wider and smoother than that
229 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
upon which the seminary stands, and terminates about 200 yards north of the point at which the Cashtown road crosses it. Near this point, and to the south of it, are a house and barn, with some five or six acres of orchard and wooded grounds, the rest of the ridge being cleared. It was in the skirmish near this house that General Reynolds fell, and over the country covered by the ridge that the First Corps fought. To the north and east, beyond where the Seminary Ridge terminates, the country is more flat, and this ground was occupied by the Eleventh Corps, the front of which was in a nearly perpendicular position to that of the First Corps, and faced the north. About 10. 15 a. m. Hall's battery (Second Maine, six 3-inch) was ordered into action by General Reynolds on the right of the Cashtown road, on the second ridge, and some 500 yards beyond the seminary. The enemy had previously opened fire from a battery of six guns at a distance of about 1, 300 yards, and directly in front of this position, on Reynolds' troops, and Hall, on coming into action, replied with effect. In the course of half an hour, a body of the enemy's infantry approached the right of Hall's battery under cover of a ravine, and opened upon him at a distance of 60 or 80 yards, killing and wounding a number of his men and horses. The supports now falling back, Captain Hall found it necessary to retire, which he did by sections. Soon after, the Third Division (Rowley's), First Corps, occupied the open ground on this ridge with Cooper's battery (B, First Pennsylvania, four 3-inch), which took post in an oat-field, about 380 yards south of the Cashtown road. The second Division (Robinson's) occupied a road on thewest slope of the Seminary Ridge, north of the railroad, and the Eleventh Corps came into position on the flat ground farther north, and in a position nearly perpendicular to that of the First Corps. Colonel Wainwright, commanding the artillery of the First Corps, sent Stewart's battery (B, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders) to report to General Robinson, and ordered Reynolds to move with his battery to the support of Calef's horse battery (A, Second United States, six 3-inch), which had been placed in position by General Wadsworth on the spot just occupied by Hall's (Second Maine six 3-inch), and was sharply engaged with the enemy's battery in its front. Reynolds had hardly taken position when the enemy opened a severe fire from a second battery immediately on his right. The cross-fire of the enemy's two battery immediately on his right. The cross-fire of the enemy's two batteries caused both Calef's and Reynolds' to retire, Reynolds taking up a new position at right angles to the ridge, with his left covered by the woods, near the house and barn referred to. While executing this movement, Captain Reynolds was severely wounded in the right eye, but refused to quit the field. The enemy's battery soon after ceased its fire. At the request of General Wadsworth, Colonel Wainwright posted Wilber's section of Reynolds' battery in the orchard on the south side of the Cashtown road, where he was sheltered from the fire of the enemy's battery on his right flank by the intervening house and barn, and moved the other two sections to the south side of the wood, on the open crest. In the meantime the Eleventh Corps had taken position, and Dilger's battery (I, First Ohio, six 12-pounders), attached to Schurz's division, soon became engaged with one of the enemy's batteries at 1, 000 yards distance, which was soon re-enforced by another. Dilger maintained his position until re-enforced by Wheeler (Thir-
230 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
teenth New York Independent, four 3-inch), sent to his assistance by Major Osborn, commanding the artillery of the corps, when a sharp contest ensued, the result of which was one piece of Wheeler's dismounted and five of the enemy's, which Major Osborn states they left on the ground. The enemy suffered the most loss. During this action, Captain Dilger several times changed the positions of his batteries with excellent effect, selecting his ground with judgment. About 11 a. m. Wilkeson's battery (G, Fourth United States, four 12-pounders) came up, and reported to General Barlow, who posted it close to the enemy's line of infantry, with which it immediately became engaged, sustaining at the same time the fire of two of his batteries. In the commencement of this unequal contest, Lieutenant Bayard Wilkeson (Fourth U. S. Artillery), commanding the battery, a young officer of great gallantry, fell, mortally wounded, and was carried from the field. Lieutenant Bancroft succeeded to the command, and by changing position and distributing his sections, in order to meet the different movements of the enemy, succeeded in maintaining himself handsomely until the division fell back to the town, when he withdrew to Cemetery Hill. About 4 p. m. the troops were withdrawn to Cemetery Hill, and Schurz's division, with Heckman's (K, First Ohio, four 12-pounders) and Wiedrich's (I, First New York, six 3-inch) batteries, were posted so as to cover the movement of the corps, Wiedrich's being placed on the hill in front of the cemetery entrance. Heckman worked his guns well, and held his ground until the enemy entered his battery. He then retired with the loss of one gun, the battery being so much crippled that it was sent to the rear, and was not again called into action. Wiedrich's battery was actively engaged, and about 4. 30 p. m. the enemy made an attempt to turn our right, but his line was very soon broken by the fire of this battery, and the attempt failed. The First Corps was withdrawn about the same time as the Eleventh. Colonel Wainwright, commanding the artillery of this corps, understanding the order to hold Cemetery Hill to apply to Seminary Hill, posted Cooper's battery (B, First Pennsylvania, four 3-inch) in front of the professor's house. Captain Stevens (Fifth Maine, six 12-pounders) was soon after, the posted by General Doubleday on Cooper's right. Soon after, the enemy emerged in two strong columns from the woods in front, about 500 yards distant, outflanked our line nearly a third of a mile, then formed in two lines of battle, and advanced directly up the crest. During this movement, Reynolds battery (L, First New York, six 3-inch) opened on the columns, but the fire of his sections was much interfered with by the movements of our own infantry in their front. Colonel Wainwright therefore moved these two sections, under Lieutenant Breck, to a strong stone wall on the seminary crest, near Stevens' position. The movement was not ordered until the enemy, outnumbering our troops 5 to 1, were within 200 yards of the battery. Lieutenant Wilber's section of the same battery soon after fell back with his supports (L, First New York, six 3-inch; Fifth Maine, six 12-pounders, and Cooper's, B, First Pennsylvania, four 3-inch) to the same position, thus concentrating sixteen guns. Stewart's battery (B, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders) was also on the same line, half of the battery between the Cashtown pike and the railroad, the other half across the railroad, in the corner of a wood. The enemy's lines continued to advance across the space
231 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
between the two crests, but when the first line was within about 100 yards of the seminary, Lieutenant Davison, Fourth U. S. Artillery, commanding the left half of Stewart's battery, placed his guns on the Cashtown pike, so as to enfilade the whole line. This movement, well sustained by the other batteries, brought the first line to a halt, but the second, supported by a column deployed from the Cashtown road, pushed on. An order was now received by Captain Stevens from General Wadsworth, directing his battery to withdraw, but Colonel Wainwright, not knowing this, and still under the mistaken impression as to the importance of holding Seminary Hill, directed all the batteries to maintain their position. In a few minutes, however, all our infantry were seen rapidly retreating toward the town, and the batteries were all limbered to the rear, and moved off down the Cashtown pike, maintaining a walk until the infantry had left it. By this time our retreating columns were lapped by the enemy's skirmishers, who opened a severe fire from behind a fence within 50 yards of the road. As soon as the road was clear, the batteries moved at a trot, but it was too late to save all the material. Lieutenant Wilber's last piece (L, First New York, six 3-inch) had 1 of its wheel-horses shot, and, by the time this could be disengaged, 3 others were shot and Lieutenant Wilber's own horse killed. It was impossible to move the piece off, and it was lost. No blame apparently can be attached to the officers of this or of Heckman's battery (K, First Ohio, four 12-pounders) for the loss of the two guns in the retiring of the two corps. It was the necessary result of the obstinate resistance made to the enemy, so as to cover the withdrawal of their respective corps. Three of the caisson bodies of Stewart's battery were broken down, 1 of his caissons exploded, 2 of his guns had been disabled by the breaking of their pointing rings, and 3 of Hall's guns dismounted. The losses of the batteries of the First Corps in these operations were heavy; 83 officers and men killed and wounded, including 6 officers wounded (Captain G. T. Stevens and Lieutenant C. O. Hunt, Fifth Maine, severely; Captain G. H. Reynolds, L, First New York, severely; Lieutenant J. Stewart, Fourth Artillery, slightly; Lieutenant J. Davison, Fourth Artillery, severely; Lieutenant W. C. Miller, B, First Pennsylvania, slightly), and about 80 horses, a large proportion of the latter between the Seminary Ridge and the town, the enemy having at that time a fire upon them from both flanks and the rear, and no infantry replying. The batteries passed immediately through the town, and were placed with those of the Eleventh Corps in position on Cemetery Hill, so as to command the town and the approaches from the northwest. The batteries north of the Baltimore pike in front of the cemetery gate, under the command of Colonel Wainwright, chief of artillery, First Corps, were posted as follows: Stewart's battery (B, Fourth United States, four light 12-pounders) across the road, so as to command the approaches from town; then Wiedrich's (I, First New York Artillery, four 3-inch), Cooper's (B, First Pennsylvania Artillery, four 3-inch), and Reynolds (L, First New York Artillery, five 3-inch), in all thirteen 3-inch guns, along the north front, some of them in such a position that they could be turned to bear upon the town and the field of battle of the 1st. Stevens' battery (Fifth Maine, six 12-pounders) was posted to the right and some 50 yards in front of this line, on a knoll, from whence they could obtain an oblique fire upon the hills in front of our line, and a flanking fire at close quarters upon any attacking col-
232 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
umns Each of the guns in these batteries had a small earthwork thrown up in its front, to afford a partial shelter from the fire of the enemy's sharpshooters. Osborn's batteries (Bancroft's, G, Fourth U. S. Artillery, six 12-pounders; Dilger's, I, First Ohio, six 12-pounders; Wheeler's, Thirteenth New York, three 3-inch), of the Eleventh Corps, with the exception of Wiedrich's, transferred to one gun of Wheeler's dismounted, were placed in the cemetery grounds, to the north of the Baltimore road. On the night of July 1, the commanding general left Taneytown, and reached Gettysburg about 2 a. m. of the 2d. Soon after his arrival, he directed me to see to the position of the artillery, and make such arrangements respecting it as were necessary. I examined the positions at Cemetery Hill, so far as the darkness would permit, and then accompanied the general and Major-General Howard in an inspection of the west front of the field, occupied by the Second and Third Corps. Cemetery Hill commanded the positions which could be occupied by the enemy to the north and northwest. Toward the south the line occupied the crest of a gentle elevation, which, concealing everything immediately behind it from the observation of the enemy, commanded the ground to the west, which sloped down gradually for a few hundred yards, and then rising, formed another crest, varying from half to three-quarters of a mile distant. The summit of this crest was wooded, and toward the south bent eastwardly and crossed the Emmitsburg road, forming a very favorable position for the enemy's artillery, and affording concealment to his movements in that direction. About half or three-quarters of a mile south of the cemetery our own crest and the ground in front of it were broken by groves of trees, and still farther on by rough and rocky ground. At a distance of about 2 miles from Cemetery Hill, a high, rocky, and broken peak formed the natural termination of our lines. The broken character of the ground in front of the southern half of our line was unfavorable to the use of artillery. From the cemetery, as a center, the right of our line extended toward the east, and lay on the north of the Baltimore pike. The ground is hilly, heavily wooded, and intersected with ravines and small water-courses, very unfavorable to the use of artillery. The First and Eleventh Corps were stationed on and near Cemetery Hill. The Second Corps (Hancock's) stretched along the crest on the left of the Cemetery Hill, with the Third Corps (Sickles') on its left. To the right of the cemetery lay a portion of the First Corps (Newton's), and beyond it the Twelfth (Slocum's). At or near daylight, Major-General Slocum reported to the commanding general that there was a gap between the left of his line and the right of the First Corps, which he feared would be taken advantage of by the enemy, as he apprehended an immediate attack. The general commanding then gave me directions to make the necessary arrangements to meet the emergency. I considered this, in connection with the order previously given me, as a recognition, for the present, at least, of the position I had held at Antietam and Fredericksburg, as commander of the artillery of the army, and proceeded to make the necessary dispositions and to give all directions I considered necessary during the rest of the battle. In order to cover the gap between the First and Second Corps, the batteries of the Twelfth Corps (Muhlenberg's, F, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders; Kinzie's, K, Fifth United States, four 12-pounders; Winegar's, M,
233 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
First New York, four 10-pounders, and Knap's, E, Pennsylvania, six 10-pounders) were placed so as to command the outlet from that interval toward the Baltimore pike, and such of the batteries on Cemetery Hill as commanded the ground and its approaches from the side of the enemy were also placed in position. The interval between the lines was too broken and too heavily wooded to permit the artillery to be placed on the immediate line of battle. These positions were held by the batteries until the infantry line was completed and well strengthened, when the artillery was arranged for any attack the enemy could make. The batteries at the cemetery, under command of Colonel Wainwright, remained as already described, and Major Osborn, chief of artillery of the Eleventh Corps, was directed to take command on the south of the road. I re-enforced him with half of Hall's battery (Second Maine, three 3-inch) from the First Corps, the other half being disabled, and five batteries (Eakin's, H, First United States, six 12-pounders; Taft's, Fifth New York, six 20-pounders; Hill's, C, First West Virginia, four 10-pounders; Huntington's, H, First Ohio, six 3-inch, and Edgell's, First New Hampshire, six 3-inch) from the Artillery Reserve, thus placing at his disposal, including the three batteries (Bancroft's, G, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders; Dilger's, I, First Ohio six 12-pounders, and Wheeler's, Thirteenth New York, three 3-inch) of his own corps remaining to him, six 20-pounder Parrotts, twenty-two light rifles, and eighteen light 12-pounders. These were stationed as follows: On the right, resting next the Baltimore road and facing the Emmitsburg, Dilger; on his left, Bancroft; then, in the order named, Eakin, Wheeler, Hill, and Hall. These eighteen light 12-pounders and ten light rifles commanded the enemy's positions to the right of the town. In rear of Bancroft and perpendicular to him were Taft's six 20-pounder Parrotts; on Taft's right and rear were Huntington's 3-inch guns; these batteries facing the north. This arrangement, in connection with that of Wainwright, brought all the positions within range of the cemetery that the enemy could occupy with artillery under a commanding fire. The batteries were all brought into requisition at different periods of the battle. July 2, during the morning, several moving columns of the enemy, passing toward our right, were shelled, and compelled to make detours, or seek the cover of ravines to make their movements. At about 3. 30 p. m. the enemy established a battery of ten guns (four 20-pounders and six 10-pounder Parrotts in a wheat-field to the north and a little to the east of the Cemetery Hill, and distant some 1, 200 or 1, 300 yards, and opened a remarkably accurate fire upon our batteries. We soon gained a decided advantage over them, and at the end of an hour or more compelled them to withdraw, drawing off two of their pieces by hand. Twenty-eight horses were afterward two of their pieces by hand. Twenty-eight horses were afterward found on the knoll. The enemy suffered severely, and, although we were successful, we had cause to regret that our 4, 05-inch guns had been left at Westminster, as the position offered great advantages for them. The enemy endeavored to re-establish his battery farther to his right, but as we could in this position bring a larger number of guns to bear than before, he was soon driven off. Cooper's battery (B, First Pennsylvania, four 3-inch), which had suffered severely in this affair, was now relieved by Ricketts', from the Artillery Reserve. In this cannonade, Lieutenant C. P. Eakin, First U. S. Artillery, was
234 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
badly wounded and carried off the field, and Lieutenant P. D. Mason, First U. S. Artillery, assumed command of the battery. About the same hour, 3. 30 p. m., as the enemy was seriously annoying the left of the Twelfth Corps, three guns of Knap's battery, under command of Lieutenant Geary, and Van Reed's section of K, Fifth U. S. Artillery, were placed in an eligible position, about 200 yards from the right of the First Corps. As soon as their presence (Knap's Pennsylvania Battery, 10-pounders, and Kinzie's, K, Fifth U. S. Artillery, light 12-pounders) was noticed, the enemy turned his battery (eight guns) upon them, but after a spirited contest of thirty minutes, in which he had a caisson blown up, his guns were silenced. The conduct of both Lieutenants Geary and Van Reed is highly spoken of by their batteries. About sunset the enemy again opened from a knoll in front of the cemetery, distant about 1, 800 yards, and this was soon followed by a powerful infantry attack on the position by General Rodes' Louisiana [?] brigade. * As their columns moved out of the town, they came under the fire of Stevens' battery (Fifth Maine), at 800 yards distance. Wheeling into line, they pushed up the hill. As their line became unmasked, all the guns that could be brought to bear upon them, some twenty, were opened, first with shrapnel and then with canister, with excellent effect. The center and left were beaten back, but their right worked their way up under cover of the houses, and pushed completely through Wiedrich's battery (I, First New York, six 3-inch) into Rickett's (F and G, First Pennsylvania, six 3-inch). The cannoneers of both batteries stood well to their guns, and when no longer able to hold them, fought with handspikes, rammers, and even stones, joining the infantry in driving them out, and capturing several prisoners. This attack of Rodes was mainly repelled by the artillery alone. The loss of the enemy was reported to be large by their wounded in the affair, who afterward fell under the care of our surgeons in Gettysburg. About 12 m. a detachment of Berdan's Sharpshooters was sent into the woods near the point where the enemy's crest opposite the left of our army cuts the Emmitsburg road, and reported the enemy as moving in force toward our left flank. About 2 p. m. General Sickles formed his corps in line to meet an attack from this direction, his right resting on the Emmitsburg road, in a peach orchard, in advance of the center of our left, and his line extending in a general direction toward Sugar Loaf or Round Top, a peak which terminated our line on the left. At this time I reached the ground, and found Captain Randolph, chief of artillery Third Corps, making arrangements to station his battery on the right, those on the left having already been posted as follows: Smith's battery (Fourth New York, six 10-pounders) on the extreme left and on a steep and rocky eminence in advance of Sugar Loaf, and on his right Winslow's (D, First New York, six 12-pounders), in a wheat-field, separated from Smith by a belt of woods. I accompanied Captain Randolph, first sending to General Tyler, commanding the Artillery Reserve, for two batteries, one of light 12-pounders and one of rifles,
*Rodes' division comprised only North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama troops. Reference is probably to Hays' Louisiana brigade. -COMPILER.
235 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
and assisted him in posting the other batteries as follows: Clark's battery (B, First New Jersey, six 10-pounders) on the line to the left of the peach orchard; Ames' (G, First New York, six 12-pounders), from the Artillery Reserve, in the orchard, both facing the south, and perpendicular to the Emmitsburg road; then along the Emmitsburg road and facing the west, Randolph's (E, First Rhode Island, six 12-pounders), and Seeley's (K, Fourth United States six 12-pounders) batteries, Seeley's well to the right of Randolph's. While Ames and Clark were moving up, the enemy opened a brisk fire upon them from a position near the Emmitsburg road and on the opposite side of it. By this time, about 3. 30 p. m., Major McGilvery came up from the Artillery Reserve with three batteries-Bigelow's (Ninth Massachusetts, four 12-pounders); Phillips' (Fifth Massachusetts, six 3-inch), and Hart's (Fifteenth New York, four 12-pounders)-which I ordered into position on the left of Clark's. As I saw that more batteries of the enemy were getting into position on the south of the Emmitsburg road and forming opposite to this line, I sent to the reserve for more rifled guns, and then, as Smith (Fourth New York, six 10-pounders) had not opened, I went to his battery to ascertain the cause. When I arrived, he had succeeded in getting his guns into position, and just opened fire. As his position commanded that of the enemy and enfiladed their line, his fire was very effective, and with that of Ames (G, First New York, six 12-pounders) and Clark (B, First New Jersey, six 10-pounders) in front, soon silenced that battery. In the meantime the enemy had established his new batteries to the north of the road, and Smith turned his guns upon them. I now moved along the line and examined the condition of the different batteries. Winslow (D, First New York, six 12-pounders) had not yet been attacked, his position facing a wood at short range that the enemy had not yet occupied. Bigelow, Phillips, and Hart were hotly engaged, and the battle soon raged along the lines. In the meantime the additional batteries ordered from the reserve-Thompson's (C and F, Pennsylvania, six 3-inch) and Sterling's (Second Connecticut, four James and two howitzers), and Ransom's brigade, consisting of Thomas' (C, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders), Weir's (C, Fifth United States, six 12-pounders), and Turnbull's (F and K, Third United States, six 12-pounders) batteries-were brought up by General Tyler in person. Ransom's brigade was formed on the crest, above general headquarters, and soon after Turnbull's, Weir's, and Thomas' batteries were ordered forward to join Humphreys' division, taking position on the right of Seeley. Some time after, two batteries of the Fifth Corps-Watson's (I, Fifth United States, four 3-inch) and Walcott's (C, Massachusetts Artillery, six 12-pounders)-were brought upon the ground by some staff officer of General Sickles; but for this there seemed to be no necessity, abundant provision having been made to supply all needs from the Artillery Reserve. The effect was to deprive the Fifth Corps of its batteries, without the knowledge and to the inconvenience of the commander of the corps. The batteries were exposed to heavy front and enfilading fires, and suffered terribly, but as rapidly as any were disabled they were retired and replaced by others. Watson (I, Fifth United States, four 3-inch) relieved Ames' battery (G, First New York, six 12-pounders); Thompson's (Pennsylvania, six 3-inch) took position near it, relieving Hart (Fifteenth New York, four 12-pounders). Turnbull's (F and K, Third United States, six 12-pounders)
236 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
was posted near the Emmitsburg road. The officers and men performed their duties with great gallantry and success, notwithstanding the unfavorable nature of the ground, which gave the enemy all the advantages of position, driving off several of the enemy's batteries, silencing others, and doing good execution on his infantry, until about 5. 30 or 6 p. m., when the line was forced back, and the batteries were compelled to withdraw. So great had been the loss in men and horses, that many of the carriages had to be withdrawn by hand and others left on the field, which, with the exception of four, were afterward brought off. Three of these belonged to Smith's battery (Fourth New York, six 10-pounders), on our extreme left. The guns were stationed on the brow of a very precipitous and rocky height, beyond a ravine in front of our line. The difficulty of getting these guns up the height had caused the delay in Smith's opening his fire. He fought them to the last moment in hopes of keeping the enemy off, and in the belief that the ground would be in our possession again before the guns could be carried off by the enemy. He got off one of the four guns he had placed on the height, but was compelled to abandon the other three. The fourth of the guns lost belonged to Thompson's battery, the horses being all killed, the men engaged in hauling off the other pieces by hand, and his infantry supports having left him. In withdrawing, many acts of gallantry were performed, the enemy in several instances being driven out from the batteries by the cannoneers and such assistance as they could procure from the infantry near them. The line reformed on the crest, which constituted our original line, and repulsed all further attacks. The batteries of the Second Corps were posted on the morning of the 2nd by its chief of artillery, Captain Hazard, First Rhode Island Artillery, as follows, from left to right, connecting with the batteries of the Third Corps on the left, and those on Cemetery Hill on the right: Rorty's (B, First New York, four 10-pounders), Brown's (B, First Rhode Island, six 12-pounders), Cushing's (A, Fourth United States, six 3-inch), Arnold's (A, First Rhode Island, six 3-inch), and Woodruff's (I, First United States, six 12-pounders). The enemy opened upon them several times during the morning, but were always silenced by their concentrated fire. When the Third Corps fell back, about 6 p. m., their batteries opened a vigorous fire, and the two left batteries (Rorty's and Brown's) conformed their movements to those of the infantry. When the crest of the hill occupied by our lines was reached, it gave the batteries a commanding position; a rapid fire wa opened, and the enemy gradually driven back. Brown's battery suffered so severely in men and horses that it became necessary to send two guns to the rear. The artillery of the Fifth Corps arrived on the field between 4 and 5 p. m. Hazlett's (D, Fifth United States, six 10-pounders), Walcott's (C, Massachusetts Artillery, six 12-pounders), and Watson's (I, Fifth United States, four 3-inch) batteries, with the First Division of the corps; Gibbs' (L, First Ohio, six 12-pounders), and Barnes' (C, First New York, four 3-inch), with Second Division. I have already stated that Watson's and Walcott's were taken from their positions by order of Major-General Sickles, and noted their services. Walcott's was not engaged, but was under fire; 6 men wounded, and 6 horses killed and wounded. About 4. 30 p. m. Hazlett's battery was moved to the extreme left,
237 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
place in position on Round Top, and immediately opened upon that portion of the enemy's force which attacked the First Division, and continued it until night with marked effect, as its fire enfiladed the enemy's line. Guthrie's section of Gibbs' battery was posted on the same hill on the right of Hazlett, and Walworth's section at the base of the hill, commanding the ravine in front of Round Top, the remaining section being held in reserve. these sections did excellent service, especially Guthrie's. On this afternoon, Lieutenant Charles E. Hazlett, Fifth U. S. Artillery, a young officer, who had gained an enviable reputation for gallantry, skill, and devotion to his country and the service, received a mortal wound, and died the same evening. For more detailed reports of the services of the artillery in the action on our left, I respectfully refer to the reports of General Tyler, commanding Artillery Reserve, and to the reports of the chiefs of artillery of the Second, Third, and Fifth Corps, transmitted herewith. It will be perceived that the batteries suffered severely in officers, men, and horses, losing a large proportionate number of officers-3 killed (Lieutenant Charles E. Hazlett, Fifth Artillery, commanding Battery B; Lieutenant M Livingston, third Artillery, commanding Turnbull's battery; Lieutenant C. Erickson, Bigelow's battery); and 12 wounded (Captain D. R. Ransom, Third Artillery, commanding Regular Brigade, Artillery Reserve; Captain J. Thompson, C, Pennsylvania Artillery; Captain N. Irish, D. Pennsylvania Artillery; Captain Patrick Hart, Fifteenth New York Battery; Lieutenant T. F. Brown, Hazard's battery; Lieutenant Samuel Canby, Fourth Artillery, Cushing's battery; Lieutenant J. K. Bucklyn, First Rhode Island, Randolph's battery; Lieut F. W. Seeley, Fourth U. S. Artillery, commanding Battery k; Lieutenant M. f. Watson, Fifth U. S. Artillery, commanding Battery I; Lieutenant J. L. Miller, Thompson's battery, mortally; Lieutenant E. M. Knox, Fifteenth New York Battery; Lieutenant E. Spence, ricketts' battery). The night of the 2nd was devoted in great part to repairing damages, replenishing the ammunition chests, and reducing and reorganizing such batteries as had lost so many men and horses as to be unable efficiently to work the full number of guns. By daylight next morning this duty had been performed so far as possible, and, when it was found impossible to reorganize i; n time, the batteries were withdrawn, replaced by others from the Artillery Reserve, and finished their work during the next morning. On the evening of July 2, a portion of Slocum's corps (the Second) [Twelfth], which formed the right of our line, was sent to re-enforce the left. During its absence, the enemy took possession of a portion of the line in the woods, and it was resolved to drive him out at daylight. Knap's battery (E, Pennsylvania, six 10-pounders) was placed on the hill known as Slocum's headquarters, and near the Baltimore pike, and winegar's battery (M, First New York, four 10-pounders) at a short distance east of it. these batteries overlooked and commanded the ground vacated by the corps. At 1 a. m. of the 3d, Muhlenberg's (F, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders) and Kinzie's (K, Fifth United States, four 12-pounders) batteries were posted opposite the center of the line of the Twelfth Corps, so as to command the ravine formed by Rock Creek. At 4. 30. a. m. these batteries opened, and fired without intermission for fifteen minutes into the wood, at a range of from 600 to 800 yards. Soon after daylight, Rigby's battery (A, Maryland, six 3-inch) was also placed on the hill, and at 5. 30. a. m. all the batteries opened,
238 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
and continued firing at intervals until 10 a. m., when the infantry succeeded in driving out the enemy and reoccupied their position of the day before. In this work the artillery rendered good service. At our center, on and near Cemetery Hill, the batteries were in position very nearly the same as on the previous day. Those outside of the cemetery gate and north of the Baltimore pike, under the command of Colonel Wainwright, First New York Artillery, were, from right to left: Stevens'(Fifth Maine, six 12-pounders), Reynolds' (L, First New York, four 3-inch), Ricketts' (F, First Pennsylvania, six 3-inch)-which had relieved Cooper's (B, First Pennsylvania, four 3-inch) the night before-- Wiedrich's (I, First New York, four 3-inch), and Stewart's (B, Fourth United States, four 12-pounders). The batteries south of the pike, and under command of Major Osborn, first New York, Artillery, were: Dilger's (I, First Ohio, six 12-pounders), Bancroft's (G, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders), Eakin's (H, First United States, six 12-pounders), Wheeler's (Thirteenth New York, three 3-inch), Hill's(C, First West Virginia, four 10-pounders), and Taft's (Fifth New York, six 20-pounders). On the left of the cemetery the batteries of the Second Corps were in line on the crest occupied by their corps in the following order, from right to left: Woodruff's (I, First United States, six 12-pounders), Arnold's (A, First Rhode Island, six 3-inch), Cushing's
(A, Fourth United States, six 3-inch), Brown's (B, first Rhode
Island, four 12-pounders), and Rorty's (B, First New York, four 10- pounders), all under command of Captain Hazard, chief of artillery. Next on the left of the artillery of the Second Corps were stationed Thomas' battery(C, Fourth United States, six 12-pounders), and on his left Major McGilvery's command, consisting of Thompson's (C and F, Pennsylvania, five 3-inch), Phillips' (Fifth Massachusetts, six 3-inch), Hart's (Fifteenth New York, four 12-pounders), Sterling's (Second Connecticut, four James and two howitzers), Rank's section (two 3-inch), Dow's (Sixth Maine, four 12-pounders), and Ames' (G, First New York, six 12-pounders), all of the Artillery reserve, to which was added, soon after the cannonade commenced, Cooper's battery (B, First Pennsylvania, four 3-inch), of the First Corps. On our extreme left, occupying the position of the day before, were Gibbs' (L, First Ohio, six 12-pounders) and Rittenhouse's (late Hazlett's, D, Fifth United States, six 10-pounders) batteries. gibbs' was, however, too distant from the enemy's position for 12-pounders, and was not used during the day, although under fire. Rittenhouse was in an excellent position for the service of his rifled guns, on the top of Round Top. We had thus on the western crest line seventy-five guns, which could be aided by a few of those on Cemetery Hill. There was but little firing during the morning. At 10 a. m. I made an inspection of the whole line, ascertaining that all the batteries-only those of our right serving with the Twelfth Corps being engaged at the time-were in good condition and well supplied with ammunition. As the enemy was evidently increasing his artillery force in front of our left, I gave instructions to the batteries and to the chiefs of artillery not to fire at small bodies, nor to allow their fire to be drawn without promise of adequate results; to watch the enemy closely, and when he opened to concentrate the fire of their guns on one battery at a time until it was silenced; under all circumstances to fire deliberately, and to husband their ammunition as much as possible. I had just finished my inspection, and was with Lieutenant Ritten-
239 Chapter XXXIX. THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
house on the top of Round Top. when the enemy opened, at about 1 p. m., along his whole right, a furious cannonade on the left of our line. I estimated the number of his guns bearing on our west front at from one hundred to one hundred and twenty. I have since seen it stated by the enemy's correspondents that there were sixty guns from Longstreet's, and fifty-five from Hill's corps, making one hundred and fifteen in all. To oppose these we could not, from our restricted position, bring more than eighty to reply effectively. Our fire was well withheld until the first burst was over, excepting from the extreme right and left of our positions. It was then opened deliberately and with excellent effect. As soon as the nature of the enemy's attack was made clear, and I could form an opinion as to the number of his guns, for which my positions afforded great facility, I went to the park of the Artillery Reserve, and ordered all the batteries to be ready to move at a moment's notice, and hastened to report to the commanding general, but found he had left his headquarters. I then proceeded along the line, to observe the effects of the cannonade and to replace such batteries as should become disabled. About 2. 30 p. m., finding our ammunition running low and that it was very unsafe to bring up loads of it, a number of caissons and limbers having been exploded, I directed that the fire should be gradually stopped, which was done, and the enemy soon slackened his fire also. I then sent orders for such batteries as were necessary to replace exhausted ones, and all that were disposable were sent me. About 3 p. m., and soon after the enemy's fire had ceased, he formed a column of attack in the edge of the woods in front of the Second Corps. At this time Fitzhugh's (K, First New York, six 3-inch), Parsons' (A, First New Jersey, six 10-pounders), and Cowan's (First New York, six 3-inch), Parsons' (A, First New Jersey, six 10-pounders), Weir's (C, fifth United States, six 12-pounders), and Cowan's(First New York Independent, six 3-inch) batteries reached this point, and were put in position in front of the advancing enemy. I rode down to McGilvery's batteries, and directed them to take the enemy in flank as they approached. The enemy advanced magnificently, unshaken by the shot and shell which tore through his ranks from his front and from our left. The batteries of the Second Corps on our right, having nearly exhausted their supply of ammunition, except canister, were compelled to withhold their fire until the enemy, who approached in three lines, came within its range. when our canister fire and musketry were opened upon them, it occasioned disorder, but still they advanced gallantly until they reached the stone wall behind which our troops lay. Here ensued a desperate conflict, the enemy succeeding in passing the wall and entering our lines, causing great destruction of line, specially among the batteries. Infantry troops were, however, advanced from our right; the rear line of the enemy broke, and the others, who had fought with a gallantry that excited the admiration of our troops, found themselves cut off and compelled to surrender. As soon as their fate was evident, the enemy opened his batteries upon the masses of our troops at this point without regard to the presence of his own. Toward the close of this struggle, Rorty's (B, First New York, four 10-pounders), Arnold's (A, First Rhode Island, six #-inch), and Cushing's (A, Fourth United States, six 3-inch) batteries, which had lost heavily in men and horses, were withdrawn, and as soon as the affair was over their places were filled with fresh ones. Soon the necessary measures had been taken to restore this portion of the line to an efficient condition. It required but a few minutes, as the batteries, as fast ass withdrawn from any point, were sent to
240 N. C., VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
the Artillery Reserve, replenished with ammunition, reorganized, returned to the rear of the lines, and there awaited assignment. I then went to the left, to see that proper measurers had been taken there for the same object. O my way, I saw that the enemy was forming a second column of attack to his right of the point where the first was formed, and in front of the position of the First Corps (Newton's). I gave instructions to the artillery, under command of Major McGilverky, to be ready to meet the first movements of the enemy in front, and, returning to the position of the Second Corps, directed the batteries there, mostly belonging to the Artillery Reserve, to take the enemy in flank as he advanced. When the enemy moved, these orders were well executed, and before he reached our line he was brought to a stand. The appearance of a body of infantry moving down in front of our lines from the direction of the Second Corps caused the enemy to move off by his right flank, under cover of the woods and undergrowth, and, a few minutes after, the column had broken up, and in the utmost confusion the men of which it was composed fled across the ground over which they had just before advanced, and took refuge behind their batteries. The attack on the part of the enemy were not well managed. Their artillery fire was too much dispersed, and failed to produce the intended effect. It was, however, so severe and so well sustained that it put to the test, and fully proved, the discipline and excellence of our troops. The two assaults, had they been simultaneous, would have divided our artillery fire. As it was, each attack was met by a heavy front and flank fire of our artillery, the batteries which met the enemy directly in front in one assault taking him in flank in the other. The losses of the artillery on this day, and especially in the assault on the Second Corps, were very large. The loss in officers was 3 killed, 2 mortally and 9 severely wounded. Killed: Captain J. M. Rorty, B, First New York; Lieutenant A. H. Cushing, Fourth United States; Lieutenant G. A. Woodruff, First United States (mortally wounded); Lieutenant J. S. Milne, First Rhode Island; Lieutenant A. H. Whitaker, Ninth Massachusetts (wounded severely); Captain J. Bigelow, Ninth Massachusetts:Lieutenant A. S. Sheldon, B. First New York; Lieutenant H. H. Baldwin Fifth United States; Lieutenant J. McGilvray, Fourth United States; Lieutenant R. C. Hazlett, Fourth Pennsylvania Battery; Lieut J. Stephenson, Fourth Pennsylvania Battery; Lieutenant H. D. Scott, Battery E. Massachusetts; Lieutenant W. P. Wright, First New York Battery; Lieutenant W. H. Jonson, First New York Battery. Captain Rorty, who had taken command of his battery but three days before, fell, fighting, at his guns. Lieutenants Cushing and Woodruff belonged to a class of young officers who, although of the lowest commissioned rank, have gained distinguished army reputation. The destruction of material was large. The enemy's cannonade, in which he must have almost exhausted his ammunition, was well sustained, and cost us a great many horses or carriages. The enemy's superiority in the number of guns was fully matched by the superior accuracy of ours, and a personal inspection of the line he occupied, made on the 5th, enables me to state with certainly that his losses in material in this artillery combat were equal to ours, while the marks of the shot in the trees on both crests bear conclusive evidence of the superiority of our practice.
241 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
This struggle closed the battle, and the night of the 3d, like the previous one, was devoted to repairs and reorganization. A large number of batteries had been so reduced in men and horses that many guns and carriages, after completing the outfit of those which remained with the army, were sent to the rear and turned in to the ordnance department. Our losses in the three days' operations, as reported, were as follows:
Casualties, July 1, 2, and 3.
In the Artillery Total
Officers Killed 5 2 7
Wounded 18 15 33
Enlisted men Killed 57 41 98
Wounded 361 171 532
Missing 52 15 67
Number of guns 212 108 320
Horses 565 316 881
Of these 320 guns, 142 were light 12-pounders, 106 3-inch guns, 6 20-pounders, 60 10-pounder Parrott guns, and a battery of 4 James rifles and 2 12-pounder howitzers, which joined the army on the march to Gettysburg. This table excludes the Horse Artillery, 44 3-inch guns, serving with the cavalry. It will be seen that the Artillery Reserve, every gun of which was brought into requisition, bore, as in all the campaigns of the Army of the Potomac, its full share, and more, of the losses. The expenditure of ammunition in the three days amounted to 32, 781 rounds, averaging over 100 rounds per gun. Many rounds were lost in the caissons and limbers by explosions and otherwise. The supply carried with the army being 270 rounds per gun, left sufficient to fill the ammunition chests and enable the army to fight another battle. There was for a short time during the battle a fear that the ammunition would give out. This fear was caused by the large and unreasonable demands made by corps commanders who had left their own trains or a portion of them behind, contrary to the orders of the commanding general. In this emergency, the train of the Artillery Reserve, as on so many other occasions, supplied all demands, and proved its great usefulness to the army. For a more particular account of the operations of the artillery and of their relations to those of the other arms of service, I respectfully refer to report of the commander of the Artillery Reserve, and to those of the chiefs of Artillery of the army corps, transmitted herewith, to which reports I also refer for the names of those who distinguished themselves by their conduct and courage. I have to acknowledge my indebtedness to these officers: Brigadier General R. O. Tyler, commanding Artillery Reserve; Colonel C. S. Wainwright, First New York Artillery, First Corps; Captain J. G. Hazard, First Rhode Island Artillery, Second Corps; Captain G. E. Randolph, First Rhode Island Artillery, Third Corps; Captain A. P. Martin, Third Massachusetts Battery, Fifth Corps; Colonel C. H. Tompkins, First Rhode Island Artillery, Sixth Corps; Major T. W. Osborn, First New York Artillery, Eleventh Corps; Lieutenant E. D. Muhlenberg,
16 R R --- VOL XXVII, PT I
242 N. C., VA., W., VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
Fourth U. S. Artillery, Twelfth Corps, for their zealous co-operation in all the administrative labors that devolved upon me, and for the efficiency with which they discharged their duties in the field. My staff-Lieutenant Colonel E. R. Warner, First New York Artillery, inspector of artillery ; Captain J. N. Craig, assistant adjutant-general, and Lieutenant C. E. Bissell, aide-de-camp--performed the duties devolving upon them with intelligence and gallantry. Upon Lieutenant-Colonel Warner fell much of the labor required in the reorganization of batteries withdrawn from the field and in replacing them. These duties and others which devolved upon him were discharged with his accustomed energy and thoroughness. Lieutenant Bissell was my only aide, and was, therefore, busily employed. He was much exposed, his duties keeping him more or less under fire at every point at which attacks were made. In my report of the battle of Chancellorsville, I took occasion to call attention to the great evils arising from the want of field officers for the artillery. The operations of this campaign, and especially the battle of Gettysburg, afford further proofs, if such were necessary, of the mistaken policy of depriving so important am arm of the officers necessary for managing it. In this campaign, for the command of 67 batteries (372 guns), with over 8, 000 men and 7, 000 horses, and all the material, and large ammunition trains, I had one general officer commanding the reserve, and but four field officers (Brigadier General R. O. Tyler, U. S. Volunteers, commanding Artillery Reserve; Lieutenant Colonel F. McGilvery, First Maine Artillery commanding brigade Artillery Reserve; Colonel C. H. Tompkins, First Rhode Island Artillery, Sixth Corps; Colonel C. S. Wainwright, First New York Artillery, First Corps; Major T. M. Robertson, Second U. S. Artillery, commanding First Brigade Horse Artillery;
Captain J. C. Tidball, Second U. S. Artillery, commanding Second Brigade Horse Artillery). In the seven corps, the artillery of two were commanded by colonels, of one by captains, and of one by a lieutenant, taken from their batteries for the purpose. The two brigades of horse artillery attached to the cavalry were commanded by captains, and there was one field officer in the reserve. The most of these commands in amy other army would have been considered proper ones for a general officer. In no army would the command of the artillery of a corps be considered of less importance, to say the least, than that of a brigade of infantry. In none of our corps ought the artillery commander to have been of less rank than a colonel, and in all there should have been a proper proportion of field officers, with the necessary staffs. The defects of our organization were made palpable at Gettysburg, not only on the field, but in the necessary and important duties of reorganizing the batteries, repairing damages, and getting the artillery in condition to renew the battle, or take the road in efficient condition on the morning after a conflict. I respectfully and urgently call the attention of the commanding general, and through him of the War Department, to this subject. Not only does the service suffer, necessarily, from the great deficiency of officers of rank, but a policy which closes the door of promotion to battery officers, and degrades them in comparison with other arms of service, induces discontent, and has caused many of our best officers to seek positions, wherever they can find them, which will remove
243 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
them from this branch of the service. We have lost many such officers, and unless something is done to cure the evil we will lose more. The reports of the horse artillery were rendered to the cavalry officers under whose orders they served, and I have not yet received all of them. As their operations were detached from those of the main body of the army, and do not naturally connect with them, I reserve them as the subject of a separate report.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
HENRY J. HUNT,
Brigadier-General and Chief of Artillery, Commanding.
Brigadier General S. WILLIAMS,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Army of the Potomac. ---
ARTILLERY HDQRS. ARMY OF THE POTOMAC,
October 4, 1863.
GENERAL: In compliance with your directions, I have the honor to state that the following were the captures from the army in the recent operations: First Corps lost one gun, 3-inch, from Reynolds' battery (L, First New York), July 1; Eleventh Corps, one light 12-pounder, Heckman's battery (K, First Ohio), July 1; Third and Fourth Pennsylvania, July 2; six lost.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
HENRY J. HUNT,
Major-General, Chief of Artillery.
Brigadier General S. WILLIAMS,
No. 29. Reports of Major General Abner Doubleday, U. S. Army, commanding Third Division of, and First Army Corps.
WASHINGTON, D. C., December 14, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that, on the morning of June 28, the First Corps left Middletown, Md., for Frederick, and encamped in the western suburbs of that town, picketing the roads toward the northwest. On the 29th, it left Frederick, and after a long and toilsome march arrived at Emmitsburg; passed through that place, and bivouacked for the night on the heights to the north. This position had been carefully selected by General Reynolds as a defensive line, the rebels having been reported in some strength at Fairfield. On the 30th, we made a short march of 3 or 4 miles to Marsh Creek, where we again took up a defensive position, Wadsworth's
division, with Hall's(Second Maine) battery, covering the Gettysburg road; my own division, with Cooper's (First Pennsylvania Reserve Volunteer) battery, covering the Fairfield road, and Robinson's division, with the remaining three batteries, some miles in rear as a reserve. It was General Reynolds' intention to dispute the enemy's advance at this point, falling back, however, in ; case of a serious attack, to the ground already chosen at Emmitsburg. Here ge received orders to reassume the command of the right wing, consisting of his own (First), Howard's (Eleventh), and Sickles' (Third) corps. In consequence of this order, he directed me to take command of the First Corps. On the eventful morning of July 1, between 7 and 8 o'clock, General Reynolds sent for me for the purpose of explaining the telegrams received by him in relation to the movements of the rebels and the latest position of our own troops. This information showed that the enemy was reported in force at Cashtown and Mummasburg, and that our cavalry was skirmishing with them on the roads leading from Gettysburg to those places. He told me he had already given orders to Wadsworth's division, with Hall's battery, to move forward, and that he would accompany these troops in person, while I remained to bring up the balance of the corps. Owing to the intervals between the divisions and the necessity of calling in the pickets, from an hour and a half to two hours elapsed before the remaining batteries, had commenced the march, I rode on in advance of the column. The could of rapid cannon firing convinced me that our cavalry was warmly engaged. I pushed forward at full speed, and soon overtook Wadsworth's division, which had left the main road and was filling rapidly through woods and fields toward a ridge which ran north and south, about 400 yards tot he west of the seminary, which is itself about a quarter of a mile to the west of Gettysburg, and located on a similar ridge parallel to the first. About 200 yards farther on, the former range of heights sloped down, and ended in a ravine called Willoughby's Run. On the most westerly of these ridges, General Reynolds had directed his line of battle to be formed, and was himself superintending the placing of Cutler's brigade as I rode up. I had previously sent an aide (Lieutenant Marten) to the general for instructions. He returned with orders for me to attend to the Millerstown road, on the left of our line. A small piece of woods cut the line of battle in about two equal parts. These woods possessed all the advantages of a redoubt, strengthening the center of our line, and enfilading the enemy's columns should they advance in the open spaces on either side. I deemed the extremity of the woods, which extended to the summit of the ridge, to be the key of the position, and urged that portion of Meredith's brigade, the Western men assigned to its defense, to hold it to the last extremity. Full of the memory of their past achievements, they replied cheerfully and proudly, ''If we can't hold it, where will you find men who can?'' General Reynolds' intention appeared to be simply to defend the two roads entering the town from the northwest and southwest, and to occupy and hold the woods between them. The principal effort of the enemy was made on the Cashtown road from; the northwest, and was opposed at first by Cutler's brigade and Hall's battery, the former stretching across, the latter posted on, the right of the road.
245 Chapter XXXIX] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
Immediately on my arrival at the ridge, I rode to the left to examine the ground in that direction, and then was engaged in overseeing the operations of Meredith's brigade, commonly known as the Iron right to left: The Second Wisconsin, Seventh Wisconsin, Nineteenth Indiana, and Twenty-fourth Michigan Volunteers. The Sixth Wisconsin, together, with the brigade guard, under Lieutenants Harris, of the Sixth Wisconsin, and Showalter, of the Second Wisconsin, had been detached by my order, to remain with me as a reserve. There was no time to be lost, as the enemy was already ; in the woods, and advancing at double-quick to seize this important central position and hold the ridge. The Iron Brigade, led by the Second Wisconsin, in line, and followed by the other regiments, deployed echelon without a moment's hesitation, charged with the utmost steadiness and fury, hurled the enemy back into the run, captured, after a sharp and desperate conflict, nearly 1, 000 prisoners-all from Archer's brigade-and reformed their lines on the high ground beyond the ravine. The Second Wisconsin, in this contest, under the Gallant Colonel Fairchild, was particularly distinguished. It accomplished the difficult task of driving superior numbers of rebel infantry from the shelter of the woods, and to it also belongs the honer of capturing General Archer himself. He was brought in by Private Patrick Maloney, of Company G. It is to be lamented that this brave Irishman was subsequently killed in the action. The troops were now withdrawn to the eastern side of the run by my order, and reformed on a line with the Second Wisconsin, the Seventh Wisconsin taking the right of the new line and the Nineteenth Indiana the left. Immediately after this, I took my position behind the left wing. I had hardly done so when I learned, with deep sorrow, that our brave and lamented commander, Major-General Reynolds, had just been shot, and was no more. This melancholy event occurred in the beginning of the attack referred to, about 10. 15 a. m. The whole burden of the battle was thus suddenly thrown upon me. The troops were now withdrawn to the eastern side of the run by my order, and reformed on a line with the Second Wisconsin, the Seventh Wisconsin taking the right of the new line and the Nineteenth Indiana the left. Immediately after thisI took my position behind the left wing. I had hardly done so when I learned, with deep sorrow, that our brave and lamented commander, Major-General Reynolds, had just been shot, and was no more. This melancholy event occurred in the beginning of the attack referred to, about 10. 15 a. m. The whole burden of the battle was thus suddenly thrown upon me. The death of General Reynolds was followed by other disasters. A column of the enemy's infantry had succeeded in approaching Hall's battery to within a distance of 60 yards by charging up the ravine on his right, and had poured in a terrible and destructive fire at that short range. At the same time a vastly superior force advanced in two lines against Cutler, in front and on his right flank. General Wadsworth directed this brigade to fall back to the shelter of the woods on Seminary ridge. This left Captain Hall without any supports to his battery, and, as he received no orders to without any supports to his battery, and as he received no orders to withdraw, his situation soon became a precarious one. The One hundred and forty-seventh New York Volunteers, of Cutler's brigade, did not receive the order to retire; Lieutenant-Colonel Miller, its commander, having been wounded, was unable to communicate his instructions to his successor, Major Harney. The latter bravely held the regiment to its position until the enemy was in possession of the railroad cut on his left, thus intercepting his line of retreat. During the half hour which elapsed before he could be relieved, his loss was 207 killed and wounded out of 380. The dispositions made by Captain by Captain Hall to meet the emergency and save his battery were both able and resolute. He broke the force of the charge against him by firing canister, and then ordered his bat
246 N. C., VA., W., VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
tery to retire by sections. The right section, while falling back, was charged upon by the enemy's skirmishers, and 4 of the horses of one piece shot. The cannoneers, however, drew off the piece by hand. In reference of this period of the action, Captain Hall says, in his official report: As the last piece of the battery was coming away, all of its horses were shot, and I was about to return for it myself, when General Wadsworth gave me a peremptory order to lose no time, but get my battery in position near the barn on the heights, to cover the retiring of the troopers. I sent a sergeant and 5 men after the piece, all of whom were wounded or taken prisoners. Captain Hall was now withdrawn behind Seminary Ridge by way of the railroad grading, which runs nearly parallel to the Cashtown road, and is about 100 yards from it-an unfortunate route to take, as it was swept by the enemy's guns, He was soon afterward assigned to a new and more advanced position by an aide-de-camp of the division commander, but in attempting to occupy it, he was fired upon by the rebel advance, who already held possession of the ground, and he again withdrew. The whole of these events had occurred on the right so soon after my arrival, that there was no opportunity for me to interpose, issue orders, or regulate the retreat. The moment was a critical one, involving the defeat, perhaps the utter rout, of our forces. I immediately sent for one of Meredith's regiments (the Sixth Wisconsin), a gallant body of men, whom I knew could be relied upon Forming them rapidly perpendicular to the line of battle on the enemy's flank, I directed them to attack immediately. Lieutenant-Colonel Dawes, their commander, ordered a charge, which was gallantly executed. The enemy made a hurried attempt to change front to meet the attack and flung his troops into the railroad cut for safety. The Ninety-fifth New York Volunteers, Colonel Biddle, and the Fourteenth Brooklyn, under Colonel Fowler, joined in the charge; the cut was carried at the point of the bayonet, and two regiments of Davis' (rebel) brigade were taken prisoners. The results of this maneuver were the capture of the two rebel regiments referred to, with their battle-flags, the release of the One hundred and forty-seventh New York Volunteers, which had been cut off, and the recapture of one of Hall's pieces, which had been left, in consequence of all the horses having been shot down and men wounded or killed. I immediately directed the original line of battle to be resumed, which was done. All this was accomplished in less than half an hour, and before General Howard had arrived on the field or assumed command. Tidball's horse battery was now ordered up by General Wadsworth, the replace Hall's battery, which had been very much cut up. Tidball was soon hotly engaged with a battery in his front. Soon after, Captain Reynolds was sent to relieve him. Upon taking a retrospect of the field, it might seem, in view of the fact that we were finally forced to retreat, that this would have been a proper time to retire; but to fall back without orders from the commanding general might have inflicted lasting disgrace upon the corps, and as General Reynolds, who was high in the confidence of General Meade, had formed his lines to resist the entrance of the enemy into Gettysburg, I naturally supposed that it was the intention to defend the place. There were abundant reasons for holding it, for it is the junction of seven great roads leading to Hagerstown, Chambersburg, Carlisle,
247 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
York, Baltimore, Tameytown, and Washington and is also and important railroad terminus. The places above mentioned are on the circumference of a circle of which it is the center. It wa, therefore, a strategic point of no ordinary importance. It possession would have been invaluable to Lee, shortening add strengthening his line to Williamsport, and serving as a base of maneuvers for future operations. I knew that Slocum's and Sickles' corps were within striking distance when we left Marsh Creek; that Howard's corps was already passing through the streets of the town, and that the remaining divisions of the First Corps were almost up. l A retreat without hard fighting has a tendency to demoralize the troops who retire, and would, in the present instance, in my opinion, have dispirited the whole army and injured its morale, while it encouraged the enemy in the same proportion. There never was an occasion in which the result could have been more momentous upon our national destiny. Final success in this war can only be attained by desperate fighting, and the infliction of heavy loss upon the enemy; nor could I have retreated without the full knowledge and approbation of General Howard, who was my superior officer, and who had now arrived on the field, . Had I done so, it would have uncovered the left flank of his corps. If circumstances required it, it was his place, not mine, to issue the order. General Howard, from his commanding position on Cemetery Hill, could overlook all the enemy's movements as well as our own, and I therefore relied much upon his superior facilities for observation to give me timely warning of any unusual danger. I sent word to him shortly after this that, in addition to the forces opposed to me. Ewell's corps was coming down on my right flank, and requested him to project that portion of the line with the Eleventh Corps. Almost at the same time he sent me the same information, together with instructions to hold Seminary Hill at all hazard, if driven back. Just previous to this the remainder of the First Corps, consisting of Robinson's and Rowley's divisions, came up. I immediately directed General Robinson to station his division in reserve as the seminary, and to throw up some slight entrenchments to aid me in holding that point in case I should be driven back. I divided Rowley's division, sending Stone's brigade to the open space on the right of the wood, to close the interval between Cutler and Meredith. The other brigade, under Colonel Biddle, One hundred and twenty-first Pennsylvania Volunteers, was posted on the left and rear of the Iron Brigade, toward the Millerstown road. General Rowley had charge of this part off the line. Later in the day he intrusted the extreme left to Colonel Gates. Twentieth New York State Militia, who, with his own regiment and the One hundred and fifty-first Pennsylvania Volunteers, under Lieutenant-Colonel McFarland, stubbornly maintained it to the last. He was greatly aided in this by two companies of skirmishers from his regiment, who occupied a house and barn in advance of our left, on the other side of the ravine., I relied greatly on Stone's brigade to hold the post assigned them, as I soon saw I would be obliged to change front with a portion of my line to face the northwest, and his brigade held the pivot of the movement. My confidence in this noble body of men was not misplaced, as will be shown hereafter. They repulsed the repeated attacks of vastly superior numbers at close quarters, and maintained their position until the final retreat of the whole line. Stone himself was shot down, battling to the last. The gallant Colonel Wister,
248 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
who succeeded him in command, was also wounded, and the command devolved upon Colonel Dana, of the One hundred and forty-third Pennsylvania Volunteers. This brigade in common with almost every regiment in the Third Division, were Pennsylvanians, and were actuated by a heroic desire to avenge the invasion of their native State. Generale Howard now formed his lines to resist the advance of Ewell's corps, which came from the northeast. The corps of A. P. Hill, opposite us, at once made a junction with the new-comers. This compelled me also to change front, with Wadsworth's division on Stone's brigade as a pivot, so that the two branches of my line of battle were facing, the one west, the other northwest. I relied upon the woods and ridges to partially shield the troops from an enfilading fire. In consequence of Ewell's new line of battle, Wadsworth threw back Cutler's brigade to Seminary Ridge, to avoid a battery upon his as they were exposed to a cross-fire from two directions. Captain Reynolds was badly wounded in the eye, but for a long time refused to leave the field. Colonel Stone, who had been contending with very little shelter against the rebel infantry and two batteries on the other side of the run, suffered some loss from the same enfilading battery which had rendered a change of front necessary on the part of Wadsworth. Leaving Colonel Wister's regiment, the One hundred and fiftieth Pennsylvania Volunteers, sill facing the west, he threw successively Lieutenant-Colonel Dwight, with the One hundred and forty-ninth Pennsylvania, and Colonel Dana, . with the One hundred and forty -third Pennsylvania, into the Cashtown road facing a little east of north. As this left an open space of some 200 yards between the right of Stone and the left of Cutler, and as the rebels at this time were ont making any strong demonstrations, against our left, Cooper's battery fired through the interval, and Biddle's brigade changed front to support it. Shortly after this, Lieutenant Wilber, of Battery L, First New York Artillery, was sent, in answer to a request from General Wadsworth for a battery, and posted in an orchard on the south side of the Cashtown road, where the right flank was sheltered by a house and barn. The remaining two sections were posted on the open crest, also to the south of the road. I had hoped General Howard would have been able to connect with the right of my line, but after General Schurz had formed his division, there was a wide interval between the two corps. This gap might have been filled by my falling back to the Seminary Ridge, but unfortunately that ridge is open ground, and could have been, as it was afterward, enfiladed bye Ewell's batteries throughout its whole extent. Finding it necessary to stop this gap at all hazard, I directed General Robinson, whose division I had kept in reserve, to send one of his brigades there. He detailed General Baxter for that purpose. This brigade moved forward and formed on the right of Wadsworth's division, but an interval sill existed of nearly 400 yards between Baxter's right and the Eleventh Corps. The enemy attacked in this interval, and were driven back by a change of front. They then assailed the left flank of the brigade, obliging Baxter again to change front. He drove the rebels before him in handsome style, but was constantly outflanked and enfiladed. Nevertheless, the brigade behaved nobly, capturing a great number of prisoners, the Eighty-
249 Chapter XXXIX.] THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.
eight Pennsylvania taking two battle-flags and the Ninety-seventh New York one. They were greatly aided in this by a galling fire pour in on the flanks of the enemy by the Twelfth Massachusetts. Finding Baxter was in danger of being overpowered, I directed General Robinson to go in person to his assistance with the remainder of his division (Paul's brigade), Stewart's battery, of the Fourth U. S. Artillery, was also sent to report to General Robinson. Part of Paul's brigade was posted by General Robinson as a support to Baxter against an enemy advancing on our front, and part was posted perpendicular to our line to protect the right flank. General Robinson says:The enemy now made repeated attacks on the division, in all of which he was handsomely repulsed, with the loss of three flags and about 1, 000 prisoners. In one of these attacks I was deprived of the services of the veteran commander of the First Brigade, Brigadier-General Paul, who fell, severely wounded, while gallantly directing and encouraging his command. The division held this position on the right, receiving and repelling the fierce attacks of a greatly superior number, not only in front, but on the flanks, and, when the enemy's ranks were broken, charging upon him and capturing his colors and his men, from about noon until nearly 5 p. m., when I received orders to withdraw. These orders not being received until all the other troops, except Stewart's battery, had commenced moving to the rear, the division held its ground until outflanked right and left, and retired, fighting. From the nature of the enemy's attacks, frequent changes were rendered necessary, and they were made promptly, under a galling fire. Soldiers never fought better or inflicted severer blows upon the enemy. When out of ammunition, their boxes were replenished from those of their killed or wounded comrades. Ewell's forces advanced about 1. 30 p. m. in two deployed lines, supported by a third line of battalions in masse. A portion of these made the attack already referred to against Baxter's left, in which they were repulsed. Their defeat was partly owing to the fact that they became separated from their main line, and swung around in such a manner as to expose their flank to Colonel Stone's troops in the road, who took advantage of the opportunity to pour in a destructi- ve fire at long range. Having thus failed in their assault upon Robinson's division, they next made a determined advance against the two regiments in the road. To meet this, Colonel Stone sent one of these regiments, the One hundred and forty-ninth Pennsylvania, under Lieutenant-Colonel Dwight, forward tot he railroad cut. This formed in en echelon about 100 yards to the front and left of Colonel Dana's regiment (One hundred and forty-third Pennsylvania Volunteers). In spite of two most effective volleys of musketry, the enemy struggled on to within 30 yards of the cut. Here, however, they were driven back in confusion by a spirited bayonet charge ordered by Lieutenant-Colonel Dwight. Dana was at the same time warmly engaged in protecting the flank of the advanced regiment. The enemy, immediately after this, brought a battery to enfilade the cut, and Dwight was forced to fall back to his first position, on Dana's left. It was in this affair that Colonel Stone was severally wounded, and Colonel Wister assumed command of the brigade. The rebels now advanced from the northwest to flank the two regiments in the road, but the One hundred and fiftieth Regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel Huidekoper, changed front forward and met the enemy precisely as Dwight had met them, with two volleys of musketry and a gallant bayonet charge, led by Colonel Wister in person; this dispersed them. Another desperate onslaught came from the north, passed the railroad cut, and almost reached the road, only,
250 N. C., VA., W., VA., MD., PA., ETC. [Chapter XXXIX.
however, to encounter another defeat from the irresistible bayonets of our men. The next attack came from the west, but was again repulsed by the indomitable One hundred and fiftieth Regiment. Colonel Wister was now severely wounded in the face. Colonel Dana, who assumed command, contested the position with varying fortunes until the close of the battle. Just previous to this, the brave and resolute Lieutenant-Colonel Huidekoper had faced four companies of his regiment to contend with the opposing forces from the west, while six companies kept off an entire brigade from the north. Lieutenant-Colonel Huidekoper lost his arm at this point, and as Major Chamberlain was also wounded, the command devolved upon Captain Widdis. Lieutenant-Colonel Dwight was left upon the field wounded in three places, and fell temporarily in to the hands of the enemy, Every regiment of Stone's brigade changed front forward, and two regiments changed front to the rear while closely engaged. The most eminent military writers regard the first movement as difficult, and the last as almost impossible, to be executed under fire. About 4 p. m. the enemy, having been strongly re-enforced, advanced enlarge numbers, everywhere deploying into double and triple lines, overlapping our left for a third of a mile, pressing heavily upon our right, and overwhelming our center. It was evident Lee's whole army was approaching. Our tired troops had been fighting desperately, some of them for six hours. They were thoroughly exhausted, and General Howard had no re-enforcements to give me. It became necessary to retreat. All my reserves had been thrown in, and the First Corps was now fighting in a single line. It is stated by General Wadsworth in his official report that the portion of the Eleventh Corps nearest to us, unable to stand the pressure, had fallen back some time before this, and that our right flank was thus uncovered, so far as that corps was concerned. Biddle's brigade about this time again changed front to meet the strong lines advancing from the west. I now gave orders to fall back, this and Meredith's brigades covering the movement by occupying the entrenchments in front of the seminary, which I had directed to be thrown up as a precautionary measure to assist in holding the new position. Cooper's battery was assigned by the chief of artillery on the north, and Stevens' battery (Fifth Maine) on the south of the seminary, and the shattered remnants of the Iron Brigade also fell into line. From behind the feeble barricade of rails these brave men stemmed the fierce tide which pressed upon them incessantly, and held the rebel lines, which encircled them on three sides, at bay until the greater portion of the corps had retired. The One hundred and fifty-first, One hundred and forty-second, One hundred and twenty-first Pennsylvania volunteers, and Twentieth New York State Militia, of Biddle's command (the last two under Colonel Gates, of the Twentieth New York State Militia), and the Second and Seventh Wisconsin and Nineteenth Indiana, of the Iron Brigade, here made their final stand. Captain [Hollon] Richardson, acting assistant inspector-general, of Meredith's staff, rode up and down the lines, waving a regimental flag and encouraging the men to do their duty. The troops, with the assistance of part of Stewart's battery, under Lieutenant Davison, poured in so deadly a fire as to wholly break up and disable the first line of the enemy approaching from the west; but the other lines pressed on, and soon commenced a flank attack,