a hundred pieces of artillery still continued to thunder. When the head of Putnam's brigade was about 150 yards south of the Old House, it deployed, and then, advancing in columns of battalions to the batteries, it massed again, and thus advanced until it had passed the frieze above the batteries, when it again deployed, and in this form continued to advance. At about 150 yards below the fort, the order was given to halt. In that position the brigade remained about fifteen minutes, when the order was again given to advance. The brigade then advanced upon the works, crossed the moat, mounted the parapet and made every effort possible to capture it, but finally, many officers having been killed or wounded, and about 1,000 men, a retreat was ordered, and the broken regiment returned to their camps.
From the time the brigades were deployed before reaching the Old House to their arrival at the fort, they were under the combined fire of Forts Wagner, Sumter, and Battery Gregg, its severity increasing as they advanced, until, when approaching the fort, was added the fire of the enemy's musketry. During all this advance, not a gun was fired by us. The glacis and the ditch around the fort were swept by howitzers. Perhaps never did any brigade on this continent make an advance over so long a space, and under so deadly a fire, without firing a gun. It is but justice to say that a column could hardly have been firmer, or a line more strong than those of the Seventh New Hampshire during all this advance. Deploying twice and massing once during the advance, they did it with a coolness and regularity hardly surpassed by veterans. Although officers and men fell at every step, the line passed steadily on until the standard ascended the slope of the parapet.
Below I give a list of casualties* of that day. Two hundred men and 18 officers fell, or were wounded or missing. It is impossible for me to speak here of those who fell, in language at the same time suitable and just, or of the gallant bearing of the regiment, without seeming injustice.
One name alone I place in this report. Haldimand Sumner Putnam, colonel of the Seventh New Hampshire Volunteers, fell while standing upon the parapet of Wagner urging on his brigade. He was most accomplished in manners, and in his profession learned beyond his years; a model soldier in his figure and bearing, and of courage that faltered at no obstacle. Never has a son of New Hampshire fallen more gallantly.
I close this report, Your Excellency, with this brief and, I hope, not exaggerated statement of the service which one of your regiments rendered, within the days mentioned, to the country.
It is gratifying to add that the wounded have received careful attention, and it is with much sadness that I recur to the honored dead. I formed this brief summary to deposit in the records of our patriotic old Commonwealth, as a memorial which may testify to its and their honor after still others of us may have found graves while pursuing a similar path of duty.
With the highest respect, I have the honor to be, Your Excellency's most obedient servant,
JOSEPH C. ABBOTT,
Lieutenant Colonel Seventh New Hampshire Volunteers, Commanding
Governor JAMES A. GILMORE, New Hampshire.
* Embodied in revised statement, p. 210.