War of the Rebellion: Serial 044 Page 0510 N. C., VA., MD., PA., ETC. Chapter XXXIX.

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from the rest of the Brigade, advanced up the hill, however, steadily toward the enemy's breastworks, the enemy falling slowly back. Our loss was heavy, the fire being terrific and in part a cross-fire. The order was now given by the major-general commanding to advance our left wing as rapidly and as steadily as possible, which was done as soon as the regiments composing it could be hurried across the creek. The left of the brigade now rested very near one line of the enemy's breastworks, which extended up the hill at right angles to the creek and then parallel with it on the summit. The enemy's attention being called more especially to our right, this fortification was not occupied in force. The twenty-third Virginia accordingly, under Lieutenant-Colonel [S. T.] Walton, immediately charged the work, and scattered the enemy which was behind it. This regiment then filed to the right, until it reached the portion of the breastworks which was at right angles to the part first captured. Forming in line on the flank and almost in rear of the enemy, there stationed, it opened fire upon them, killing, wounding, and capturing quite a number. The Thirty-seventh and Tenth Virginia and First Maryland Battalion then came to the assistance of the Twenty-third Virginia, and fully occupied the works. The Third North Carolina still maintained its former exposed position, although its ammunition was nearly exhausted, notwithstanding the fact that the men had sought to replenish their cartridge-boxes from those of the wounded and dead. The First North Carolina, which had been kept in reserve, was at this crisis led by Lieutenant McKim to its support. The brigade, with the exception of the two North Carolina regiments, was then formed in line of battle between the captured breastwork and a stone wall on the left of and parallel to it, from which position it was enabled to open a cross-fire upon the enemy, doing considerable execution. More, however, might have been done had not the impression at this time prevailed that we were firing upon our friends, and the fire been discontinued at intervals. To ascertain the true state of the case, the Tenth Virginia, under Colonel [E. T. H.

Warren [which was on our extreme left, and had formed a line at and perpendicular to the stone wall above referred to], changed front forward to the wall, and then moved by the left flank along it until it was supposed the regiment had gained the enemy's rear, when it opened fire, and drove that part of the enemy's line back. Finding, however, the enemy in its own rear, as evinced by their fire, the regiment was compelled to change front to the rear and perpendicular to the wall, from behind which it repulsed a bayonet charge made by a regiment of the enemy which emerged from a wood on the left of the stone wall. The enemy not renewing the attack, the brigade was ordered back to the works, where it was formed in line of battle, the First Maryland Battalion on the right and Tenth Virginia on the left, the North Carolina regiments still remaining outside the breastworks. This reconnaissance, as well as the reports of scouts and the statements of prisoners, gave us the assurance that we had gained an admirable position. We had been but a short time behind the breastworks when at least two regiments advanced from the woods to the left of the works, and opened fire upon us, but they were soon driven back. The prisoners and wounded were sent a little to the rear, and our sufferers received such attention as could be given them by Dr. [D.] Snowden, assistant surgeon of the Maryland battalion.