War of the Rebellion: Serial 043 Page 0410 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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a short time, when it was discovered that the enemy was crowding upon our flanks. Th brigade, including ma command, was ordered by Colonel Brooke to fall back. This was done successfully through a heavy fire from the enemy's infantry and artillery. About 8 a. m. I marched to a position near the one I held just before the action, where the regiment bivouacked during the night. During the morning of the 3d, my command was engaged in throwing up earthworks. In the afternoon, we were under a severe artillery fire for several hours, but there were no casualties. The loss in my command is proportionately large, the casualties nearly all occurring in the hotly contested engagement in the wheatfield. All my officers and men did their duty nobly and well. I herewith forward you a list of

casualties. *

I have the honor to be, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. McMICHAEL,

Lieutenant Col, Comdg. Fifty-third Pennsylvania Volunteers.

Lieutenant CHARLES P. HATCH,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, Fourth Brigade.

HDQRS. FIFTY-THIRD PENNSYLVANIA VOLUNTEERS,

August 3, 1863.

SIR: As required by circular from brigade headquarters of this date, I have the honor to transmit the following report of the operations of my command at the battle of Gettysburg:

I arrived on the field with my command about 8 a. m. on July 2, and was marched to a position in the rear of the left center of the line. Remaining here about an hour, I marched with the remainder of the brigade to a position on the front, where I remained until 3 p. m., when the engagement opened. From 3 to 5 p. m. we were under a severe shelling fire, at which hour, in compliance with the orders of Colonel Brooke, commanding brigade, I moved with the brigade by the left flank across a field, finally forming line of battle, with a grain-field in the front. The Sixty-fourth New York Volunteers was on my right and the Twenty-seventh Connecticut Volunteers on my left. I then, as ordered by Colonel Brooke, in conjunction with the brigade, moved forward in line of battle. When midway in the grain-field, firing commenced, lasting about fifteen minutes, when, in accordance with order from Colonel Brooke, bayonets were fixed, and I charged upon the enemy, driving him from his strong position on the crest of the hill in our front. The position was held about fifteen minutes, when it was discovered that the enemy in force was getting in the flank and rear; then I fell back, in accordance with orders from Colonel Brooke. During the night of the 2d, my regiment was engaged in constructing breastworks. On the 3d, my command lay behind the entrenchments under a heavy artillery fire. My command went into action with 15 officers and 120 enlisted men.

*Embodied in revised statement, p. 175.