War of the Rebellion: Serial 043 Page 0770 N. C., VA., W. VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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at the consultation held on the night of the 2d, but I do not remember having sent for him individually, though I of course sent for corps commanders, and I also remember being puzzled to account for his presence, and refraining from courtesy to him from asking any explanation, this arising, as I said before, from the impression on my mind that you were in command of your own corps on the removal of the Fifth and Sixth. I cannot say anything more beyond the fact that General Williams' commanding the corps was not impressed on my mind either on the field or when reading your report; hence the failure to read his report and the omission to mention his name. 4. The failure to make special mention of the First Division on the afternoon of the 2nd and on the 3d. This is again an omission which I am not prepared to acknowledge, either as an error or an act of injustice. There is no corps in the army which would not have equal cause of complaint, as it was out of my power, as I stated before, to make mention of the special services of each division, brigade, and regiment. I do not agree with you that the inference can be drawn from my report that Geary's division alone went to the left on the 2d, and alone repulsed the enemy on the 3d, though I am wiling to admit that marked prominence is given to the part that division took on the 3d, and that I was under the impression the main attack of that day was on Geary. Moreover, if you remember, at the time, from a report made to me by General Wadsworth, I was led to believe General Geary was unnecessarily expending ammunition, and notified you of this, Afterward, I was satisfied of the reverse, and, perhaps, the fear of doing injustice, this impression having existed, induced me to dwell more on Geary than I should otherwise have done. But I remember your dispatch in the night of the 2nd stated that part of Geary's vacated rifle-pits were occupied by the enemy, and you asked for authority for Geary to attack with artillery and infantry at daylight, which I gave you. 5. The error in the case of Shaler was due to General Sedgwick's report, which he acknowledged as soon as my report appeared in print. I have now, general, endeavored to explain the errors and omissions charged, or, rather, to show how they occurred. As you say, it will be difficult to repair them. I will, however, immediately forward to the General-in-Chief the sub-reports of General Ruger, and accompany it with a letter, a copy of which is herewith inclosed, * and which I trust will meet with your approval.

Respectfully, yours,


Major-General, Commanding Army of the Potomac.

Numbers 272. Reports of Brigadier General Alpheus S. Williams, U. S. Army, commanding First Division of, and Twelfth Army Corps.


Kelly's Ford, Va.,

August 22, 1863.

COLONEL: In compliance with circular order, Army of the Potomac, August 20, I have honor to submit the following report


*See Meade to Halleck, February 25, 1864, p. 120.