War of the Rebellion: Serial 043 Page 0480 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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and for and hour and a quarter we were subjected to a very warm artillery fire. The batteries did not at first reply, till the fire of the enemy becoming too terrible, they returned it till all their ammunition, excepting canister, had been expended; they then waited for the anticipated infantry attack of the enemy. Battery B, First New York Artillery, was entirely exhausted; its ammunition expended; its horses and men killed and disabled; the commanding officer, Captain J. M. Rorty, killed, and senior First Lieutenant A. S. Sheldon severely wounded. The other batteries were in similar condition; still, they bided the attack. The rebel lines advanced slowly but surely; half the valley had been passed over by them before the guns dared expend a round of the precious ammunition remaining on hand. The enemy steadily approached, and, when within deadly range, canister was thrown with terrible effect into their ranks. Battery A, First Rhode Island Light Artillery, had expended every round, and the lines of the enemy still advanced. Cushing was killed; Milne had fallen, mortally wounded; their battery was exhausted, their ammunition gone, and it was feared the guns would be lost if not withdrawn. At this trying moment the two batteries were taken away; but Woodruff still remained in the grove, and poured death and destruction into the rebel lines. They had gained the crest, and but few shots remained. All seemed lost, and the enemy, exultant, rushed on. But on reaching the crest they found our infantry, fresh and waiting on the opposite side. The tide turned; backward and downward rushed the rebel line, shattered and broken, and the victory was gained. Woodruff, who had gallantly commanded the battery through the action of July 2 and 3, fell, mortally wounded, at the very moment of victory. The command of the battery devolved upon Second Lieutenant Tully McCrea, First U. S. Artillery. Batteries from the Artillery Reserve of the army immediately occupied the positions vacated by the exhausted batteries of the brigade, and immediate efforts were made to recuperate and restore them to serviceable condition. So great was the loss in officers, men, and horses, that it was found necessary to consolidate Light Company I, First U. S. Artillery, Battery A, Fourth U. S. Artillery, and Batteries A and B, First Rhode Island Light Artillery, thus reducing the five batteries that entered the fight to three. The greatest praise is due to the gallantry and courage of the officers and men of the brigade, of whom one-third were either killed or wounded. The fire under which they fought on the afternoon of July 3 was most severe and terrible, as the inclosed list of killed, wounded, and missing* will sufficiently testify. In the death of Captain J. M. Rorty the brigade has lost a worthy officer, a gallant soldier, and an estimable man. He had enjoyed his new position but one day, having assumed command of Battery B, First New York Artillery, on July 2, as it was about to engage the enemy. First Lieutenant A. H. Cushing, commanding Battery A, Fourth U. S. Artillery, fell on July 3, mortally wounded by a musket-shot. He especially distinguished himself for his extreme gallantry and bravery, his courage and ability, and his love his profession. His untimely death and the loss of such a promise as his youth cherished are sincerely mourned. First Lieutenant George

A. Woodruff, commanding Light Company I,


*Embodied in revised statement, p. 177;