Answer. It was not severe at all at first. Half or three-quarters of an hour after - it might have possibly been an hour - they had a battery firing which enfiladed our line on the right. That fire came apparently from one or two guns on Cemetery Hill.
By the COURT:
Question. What troops occupied that line?
Answer. I think it was the First Division of the Ninth Corps, which had endeavored to move up toward the crest of Cemetery Hill, by the way of the Chimneys, where there is another battery. The fire of the enemy's battery on Cemetery Hill was not formidable, because the heavy battery of ours kept it almost completely silenced.
Question. Had those trees been removed, could our batteries have played on the enemy's guns on our right of the crater, which were firing across the plain over which our troops were to charge?
Answer. Yes, sir. They could also have fired upon a battery in the edge of the woods, almost in front of the crater, that was enfilading our line.
Question. What is the reason the trees were not cut down?
Answer. I called General Burnside's attention to it three weeks before. I went to the general the night before the explosion of the mine, and tried to get a large party to cut those trees down, and he said no trees should be cut down until the mine should have exploded. I asked him for a detail, and he gave me eighty men, which were to be set at work immediately after the explosion of the mine. I put them to work, two men to a large three and one, and they commenced cutting, but only a few trees cut down, the party was so small.
TESTIMONY OF CAPTAIN GREGG.
Captain THEODORE GREGG, Forty-fifth Pennsylvania Volunteers, Ninth Corps, being duly sworn, says to question 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. My command was the Forty-fifth Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteers, First Brigade, Second Division, Ninth Army Corps.
Question. State briefly what you observed about the operations on that day.
Answer. My regiment was in the entrenchments opposite the rebel for that was blown up. About 3.30 o'clock on the morning of the assault I received orders from Captain Raymond, aide to Colonel Bliss, commanding the brigade, to leave part of the regiment deployed as skirmishers and go back with the remainder to the edge of the woodlands and form on the right of the Fourth Rhode Island, and remain there until further orders. When the explosion took place I was ordered by Captain Peckham, who was also an aide to Colonel Bliss, to follow the Fourth Rhode Island. We marched by the flank, left in front, through the covered way. On arriving at our front line of works opposite the crater the orders was given to
double-quick across the open plain. On arriving in front of the rebel works we found several regiments lying down on the ground, and a great many men killed and wounded. I then received orders to charge across the crater; I gave the command "face by the right flank," in order to march in line of battle; and on arriving at the edge of the crater I faced again by the left flank, and marched in single file around and in rear of the crater. The crater was filled with the troops of the First and Second Divisions of the Ninth Army Corps. General Bartlett, commanding the First Brigade, First Division, General Griffin, commanding the Second Brigade, Second Division, and General Hartranft, were in the crater. They appeared to be endeavoring to rally the troops for the purpose of charging forward to some buildings about 400 yards in rear of the crater toward Petersburg, and I believe on Cemetery Hill. I was ordered by General Bartlett to charge across the plain and secure those buildings so that we could use them to operate as sharpshooters against the enemy's artillery. At the same time Captain Peckham ordered me to form in line of battle and then charge down in rear of the enemy's line of rifle-pits on the right - that is to face by the rear rank and charge the enemy in the rifle-pits on the right. As soon