War of the Rebellion: Serial 068 Page 0247 Chapter XLVIII. SOUTH SIDE OF THE JAMES.

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This position we occupied until the action of the 16th, my left resting still upon the turnpike and my right upon the left of the Sixty-third Tennessee. During the time we were occupying these two lines we were constantly under the shelling of the enemy and the fire of their sharpshooters.

When the battle on the 16th commenced my orders from General Johnson were to move down the turnpike by the left flank until I reached the outer line of fortifications, when I would halt, front, and move forward in connection with General Ransom's division. Long before I reached the outer line of fortifications I discovered that the enemy were still occupying our works with a battery of seven pieced (Parrott guns), planted in the center of the turnpike a little beyond the fortifications. We, however, continued to move forward under a perfect shower of grape, canister, and minie-balls, which swept up the turnpike. Reaching the trenches, line was immediately formed confronting the enemy, and here commenced and raged for two hours or two and a half one of the most desperate actions in which I have ever been engaged. The enemy were in strong force under our trenches, and his battery above alluded to played upon us most furiously. The were vastly outnumbering me, with fixed bayonets, and nothing but the thickness of the wall separated us. They had also succeeded in throwing a force upon my right flank and rear, from which we received a most galling fire. Having thus in a measure surrounded, us, they frequently demanded our surrender, which, however, was met with defiant yells and volley after volley from my regiment. With their battery in our front, their infantry in overwhelming numbers in our front and upon my flank and rear, the case seemed desperate to the last degree; but by causing the rear rank of my regiment to face about we thus met and fought them on all sides; succeeded in driving them off and holding our position; silenced and captured their battery of seven pieces (Parrott guns). One of these pieces was brought to the rear by a detail from my own regiment. Some other brigade or command passed over the ground where the rest of it was left, and I understand, claims to have captured it. I hope, however, our commanding officer will do us justice in this particular.

The enemy, to impede our progress and advance upon them, had obstructed the road with telegraph wire, in order to trip up the men. This trick (emphatically a Yankee one) was, however, soon discovered and surmounted. While the fire was thickest and hottest some stragglers from another command, who had sought refuge in a ditch in our rear, raised a shirt in lieu of a white flag. This gave the enemy great encouragement, but on being discovered by the men of my regiment every one called out, "Tear it down; tear it down!" Lieutenant Waggoner, of my regiment, immediately rushed to the recreant and pulled it down, being wounded in the attempt. Lieutenant Waggoner, for this display of gallantry and daring, is entitled to the highest consideration and commendation. For this, as well as other acts during the battle, he is entitled to most distinguished notice.

I carried into action 319 men; had 14 killed and 54 wounded, among the number Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd (who was mortally wounded, has since died), Captain Cortner, and Lieutenant Patrick.

It is difficult to draw any distinction where all acted with so much gallantry. Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd, Major J. G. Lowe, Captain Cortner, Captain Terry, and Lieutenant Waggoner all acted with