giving way in my front. I ordered a charge, and the enemy in my front fled, but that portion of his line confronting the two companies on my left their ground, and continued a most galling fire upon my left.
Just at this moment, I discovered the regiment on my left (Forty-seventh Alabama) retiring. I halted my regiment as its left reached a very large rock, and ordered a left-wheel of the regiment, which was executed in good order under fire, thus taking advantage of a ledge of rocks running off in a line perpendicular to the one I had just abandoned, and affording very good protection to my men. This position enabled me to keep up a constant flank and cross fire upon the enemy, which in less than five minutes caused him to change front. Receiving re-enforcements, he charged me five times, and was as often repulsed with heavy loss. Finally, I discovered that the enemy had flanked me on the right, and two regiments were moving rapidly upon my rear and not 200 yards distant, when, to save my regiment from capture or destruction, I ordered a retreat.
Having become exhausted from fatigue and the excessive heat of the day, I turned the command of the regiment over to Captain B. A. Hill, and instructed him to take the men off the field, and reform the regiment and report to the brigade.
My loss was, as near as con now be ascertained, as follows, to wit: 17 killed upon the field, 54 wounded and brought off the field, and 90 missing, most of whom are either killed or wounded. Among the killed and wounded are 8 officers, most of whom were very gallant and efficient men.
Recapitulation. -Killed, 17; wounded, 54; missing, 90; total, 161.
I am, lieutenant, most respectfully, your obedient servant,
W. C. OATES,
Colonel, Commanding Fifteenth Alabama Regiment.
Lieutenant B. O. PETERSON,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
Numbers 445. Report of Colonel William F. Perry, Forty-fourth Alabama Infantry.
NEAR FREDERICKSBURG, VA., August 8, 1863.
SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by the regiment under my command in the battle of Gettysburg, Pa., on July 2:
It occupied the place of the second battalion in the line formed by the brigade on the heights, which ran parallel with and fronting the enemy`s position. Having advanced with the brigade down the long slope and through the intervening meadow, it was detached from its place in the line, by order of General Law, and by a flank movement was brought to the extreme left of the brigade.
Whem at a short distance from the stone fence near the base of the mountain, General Law informed me that he expected my regiment to take a battery which had been playing on our line from the moment the advance began. This battery was situated, not on the mountain itself, but on a rugged cliff which formed the abrupt ter-