War of the Rebellion: Serial 080 Page 0104 OPERATIONS IN SE.VA. AND N.C. Chapter LII.

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remark of his that led me to think it had not been, and besides I myself was entirely in the dark in regard to the delay, and so I asked him if his division had been properly supported as it was intended, and he said it had.

Question. Did you hear him give any reason for the division halting?

Answer. No, sir. From the efforts he made to have them ordered forward somewhere I judged that it was contrary to his expectations that they did halt. He frequently sent up aides to have them moved forward somewhere,and from the order that came to him I supposed it was to the crest of the hill. The aide who brought the order said, "The general wishes you to move forward to the crest of the hill."

Question. Do you know any reason why he was not with his troops himself?

Answer. No, sir. But during almost the last moments or his safety there sent an aide to ascertain how things were going on, and remarked that he could not go himself as he had been hurt in the side by a spent ball. I cannot state positively when this occurred; it seemed to be after I first saw him, but I recollect him having mentioned that fact quite late in the forenoon, nearly noon, for the first time. I have a strong impression that he came back there after General Ferrero's troops moved forward, but I could not say to so positively.


Colonel H. G. THOMAS, Nineteenth U. S. Colored Troops, being duly sworn, says to questions by JUDGE-ADVOCATE:

Question. Were you at the assault on the 30th of July, and what was your command?

Answer. I was at the assault on the 30th of July, and commanded the Second Brigade, Fourth Division, Ninth Corps (colored troops).

Question. What was the formation of your troops in going to the assault?

Answer. The formation was by file left in front,which brought us faced by the rear rank when we made the charge.

Question. The head of your troops struck the enemy's line, where?

Answer. I forced my brigade around the right of the crater, contrary to orders, because the crater was so full that no man could get through - that is, I left two staff officers to force them through. I went straight to the front and field to the right, and went into these rifle-pits in the enemy's line as far as the head of the First Brigade of our division, which I was ordered to support.

Question. Did you get beyond the line of the crater with your troops?

Answer. I did, sir.

Question. How far?

Answer. I should say about between 300 and 400 yards to the right of the crater, and in front of it. I was ordered to support the First Brigade when it made its charge.

Question. Did you get beyond the enemy's line?

Answer. I did, sir. I led a charge which was not successful. The moment I reached the head of the First Brigade I started out the Thirty-first Colored Regiment, which was in front, but it lost its three ranking officers in getting in position, and did not go out well.

Question. What, in your opinion, were some of the cause of the failure of the general assault on that day?

Answer. So far as I can judge from my own stand-point, my utter inability to make a decent with my own brigade was the fact the pits into which we were sent were entirely occupied by dead and dying rebel troops and our own, from the First Division of our corps - General Ledlie's. There was not room for us to move up. We were delayed, I should think, an hour and a half, in the covered way through which we moved, from the fact, so far as I can learn, that the First Division did not make the charge. We were to occupy the pits after they made the charge.