War of the Rebellion: Serial 065 Page 0308 S. C., FLA., AND ON THE GA. COAST. Chapter XLVII.

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followed, moving a portion of his command across and to the right of the railroad, the whole forming a very strong line of skirmishers 300 or 400 yards in length. I immediately pushed the line forward as fast as possible, paying particular attention to the enemy's batteries, the strength of which had developed itself upon the left of our line to the right of the railroad. After moving up 200 or 300 yards I found the enemy drawn up in line to receive us and in position to support their battery, the enemy here showing a front of five regiments, flanked on the right and left by cavalry, which made occasional demonstrations upon our flanks, but were easily turned back in disorder.

After a few moments' attention from our seven-shooters, supposing that support was close at hand, I pushed forward, firing rapidly as I went, which caused the enemy to give ground to us, I should judge, 200 yards, in some confusion, but firing as they withdrew. Here I discovered that the enemy were intrenched and delivered well-directed volleys of musketry. I found also that my ammunition was very nearly expended (some of my men being entirely out), there was no support in sight, I had already pushed so far in the enemy's center that my line formed a semicircle, and that I was receiving the enemy's fire from three sides. At this juncture I determined to withdraw and save my command, which was done at the proper time, for had I remained there five minutes longer my whole command would have been swallowed up in the enemy's advance. My men withdrew rapidly. Those who had ammunition fired as they withdrew and divided to the right and left in order to unmask the Seventh Regiment New Hampshire Volunteers, who approached. After I had withdrawn about 400 yards, I directed my course toward our regiment's right, where I found that portion of my command which had gone to the right. Some were entangled with a portion of the New Hampshire Volunteers, whom I withdrew as soon as possible,and moved by the flank to the left where I found Lieutenant and Acting Adjutant Hutchinson, who had rallied about 100 men around the colors. I was soon found by Captain Mills and Lieutenant townsend with most of their commands. I reorganized the regiment there, and by direction of Colonel Hawley the men lay down to await a supply of ammunition, which had been sent for and was accordingly furnished. We afterward moved forward to fill a gap in the line occasioned by the advance of a regiment upon each side of us. Here the enemy appeared about 600 yards in front of us and a little to the left. By direction of Colonel Hawley our guide sights were raised to 600 yards, when we opened fire by file, which broke up the enemy's column and checked his advance. We remained in this position, occasionally firing or permitting a portion of the men to fire as the enemy showed himself, until by direction from the same authority we moved to the rear about 100 yards. Our forces on the right and left, being on the retreat, then faced about, and putting the guide sights at 400 yards opened an affective fire for a few minutes. Soon after this the engagement closed, though we took position in line two or three times. I was directed by Colonel Hawley to report to Colonel Barton, of the Forty-eighth Regiment New York Volunteers, which I according did, and by his direction deployed 125 of my men as rear guard for the army (which had now left the field), making a line of nearly half a mile in length, a body of our cavalry, being behind me. I occupied this relative position and marched in this manner until I reached Bar-