War of the Rebellion: Serial 043 Page 0274

Search Civil War Official Records



Page 274
Chapter XXXIX. N. C., VA ., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC.

Mansfield continued to advance the regiment to near close quarters, when the line of the enemy in our immediate front yielded, a portion seeking cover in a deep excavation, the balance seeking refuge behind trees and a slight elevation of the ground, from which they attempted to reform their broken lines. I ordered a charge upon this last position of the enemy, which was gallantly made at the doublequick, the enemy breaking in confusion to the rear, escaping from the timber into the open fields beyond. In this charge we captured a large number of prisoners, including several officers, among them General Archer, who was taken by Private Patrick Maloney, of Company G, of our regiment, and brought to me, to whom he surrendered his sword, which I passed over with the prisoners to Lieut D. B. Dailey, acting aide-de-camp on the brigade staff. I regret to say that this gallant soldier (Private Maloney) was killed in action later in the day. After this disposition of the prisoners, the regiment was formed in line in the open field beyond the timber. Here the balance of the brigade was formed on our left. We were soon faced to the rear, and retired about midway through the timber, where we were ordered to lie down. We remained in position some two hours or more, when the enemy were discovered emerging from the timber beyond the field we had just left, in two lines, with a heavy line of skirmishers. The front line of the enemy, with skirmishers, advanced directly to the front, while the second line advanced obliquely to the left. In a short time the enemy's skirmishers and our own became actively engaged, which continued with great spirit for a time, when it was discovered an attempt was being made to flank our position by the second line. An order was given to fall back toward Seminary Ridge, then directly in our rear, and in which was placed and at work the Fifth Maine Battery. This movement was made in good order, firing as we retired. About half the distance from where we commenced to retire to this new position, I faced the regiment to the front, and again moved to meet the advancing columns of the enemy, when I discovered the enemy closing in upon our left. I again faced to the rear, and took up a position on the ridge referred to, on the right of the brigade already in position. At this time and point the battle raged with great fury, near the close of which I received a severe gun-shot wound in my left leg, near the knee-joint. Being unable to remain standing, I was taken to temporary shelter, when almost immediately the brigade and regiment fell back to Cemetery Hill. The casualties to the regiment resulting from this day's fight, for the numbers engaged, are believed to be unparalleled in the history of the war, and are here given as follows:




Casualties.

Officers.

Men.

Total.









Engaged

29

273

302









Killed

2

25

27



Wounded.

11

142

153



Missing

6

47

53



Total.

19

214

233









Left for duty.



69




Page 274
Chapter XXXIX. N. C., VA ., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC.