War of the Rebellion: Serial 043 Page 0604 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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It was now nearly dark. A portion of the enemy appeared to have occupied the summit of the rocky hill to the left. The men of this brave regiment, exhausted by their labors, had thrown themselves upon the ground, and many of them sunk at once in sleep. Colonel Rice, now in command of the brigade, directed Colonel Chamberlain to drive the enemy from this height. The order was at one given. Roused again to action, and advancing with fixed bayonets and without firing, lest the smallness of their numbers might be suspected, they rushed up the hill. Twenty-five more prisoners, including some staff officers, were added to the number previously taken, with a loss to the regiment of 1 officer mortally wounded and 1 man taken prisoner by the enemy. It was ascertained that these troops occupying the hill had been sent from Hoods division, which was then massed a few hundred yards distant, and that their object was to reconnoiter the position as a preliminary to taking possession of the height. In addition to the prisoners above mentioned as taken by this regiment, 300 stand of arms were also captured by them. It is due to this regiment and to its commander that their service should be thus recorded in some detail. Upon receiving a re-enforcement of five regiments of the Third Division, under command of Colonel Fisher, Colonel Rice detached two of them to the aid of Colonel Chamberlain, in order to maintain the position he had gained, and he was thus enabled to hold it, and the enemy, having been repelled upon every point of his attack, and night coming on, withdrew from the conflict. Colonel Rice directed the Forty-fourth New York and the Eighty-third Pennsylvania to move to the front and gather up the wounded, who, including those of the enemy who had been left upon the field, were carefully brought in. The total results of the service of this brigade are stated by Colonel Rice to be 500 prisoners captured, including 2 colonels and 15 other commissioned officers, and 1, 000 stand of arms. The brigade numbered about 1, 000 men. The following day was principally occupied in burying the dead. The Third Brigade was relieved by the First Brigade, and held the position occupied by it. It would be a grateful task to relate in detail the services of many who deserve a more particular mention, but the limits of this report will not permit. No one failed in his duty. A tribute is due to the memory of Colonel Vincent, who fell, mortally wounded, early in the engagement. He lingered a few days after the engagement. His promotion as a brigadier-general was sent to him at once as an appreciation of his services by the Government, but it reached him too late for his own recognition. He expired soon after its receipt. A special mention should also be made of Colonel Jeffords, of the Fourth Michigan Volunteers, who sealed his devotion to his country with his blood, while contending hand to hand with overpowering numbers, in endeavoring to rescue the colors of his regiment from the hands of the enemy. To Colonels Tilton, Sweitzer, and Rice, the commanders of brigades, great credit is due for the successful and skillful management of their commands under the very trying circumstances in which they were placed. Colonel Chamberlain, of the Twentieth Maine Volunteers, whose service I have endeavored briefly to describe, deserves especial mention.