War of the Rebellion: Serial 080 Page 0322 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LII.

Search Civil War Official Records

and scattered the enemy in all directions, Miles' brigade, Barlow's division, capturing four 20-pounder Parrott guns; but few killed or wounded on either side. 6.35 a. m., General Hancock wrote to General Humphreys, chief of staff, Army of the Potomac, that we had captured four guns and that he was pressing forward after the enemy. 7.20 a. m., enemy opened battery on our extreme right, which our guns at once silenced. One brigade of Mott's division advanced to attempt capture of that battery and had a sharp fight, but enemy succeeded in getting their guns off. 7.25 a. m., dispatch sent by General Hancock to General Humphreys, chief of staff, Army of the Potomac, stating that enemy had opened battery on our extreme right, and that a brigade of [Mott's] division was advancing to assail it. Also stating that as all chances for surprising the enemy had passed it was a question whether General Sheridan's cavalry should attempt to break through the enemy's lines for the purpose of making a raid as had been contemplated, or whether the cavalry should wait until the infantry advanced farther. 7.30 a. m., enemy gone at all points from their first line of works, and our troops occupying them. All firing ceased. Our whole line now advanced to Potteries, near Bailey's Creek, on New Market and Malvern Hill road, on the left, and to New Market and Long Bridge road on the right. From this position we discovered the enemy in a second line of heavy entrenchments along the crest of Spring Hill, apparently extending for a great distance to our right and left. Bailey's Creek and its valley lying between our lines, some firing in the valley between our skirmishers and the enemy's; the cavalry holding the right of our line, under General Sheridan. Enemy 's works in our front covering New Market and Darby or Central roads. Our gun-boats lying in James River shelled enemy's works, throwing their immense shot and shell over our heads. We could see them plow up the ground in their works and could also see the "rebs" flying from them in all directions for shelter. Sharp skirmishing all day. The general, Miller, and myself came near getting hit to-day by enemy's skirmishers, who were concealed in a wood near which we rode to enable the general to see more closely the enemy's line. We rode into a thicket after they had several deliberate shots at us without hitting any of us or either of our horses. 5 p. m., general Barlow advanced one regiment, Twenty-sixth Michigan, across New Market and Long Bridge road where Central road leaves it and pushed up toward Jenning's house on Spring Hill. The regiment became sharply engaged, and having developed the enemy's position was withdrawn by General Barlow in person. At night-fall the corps held the following position: First Division on right following direction of New Market road; Mott's division in center facing Bailey's Creek; General Gibbon holding Potteries, on our left, to a point where Bailey's Creek becomes an impassable swamp. The prisoners captured to-day tell us that they belong to Kershaw's division.

July 28, 1864. - 5 a. m., troops in same position as last night. At this hour Captain Sweet, of general Birney's staff, reported to General Hancock with Birge's brigade, Tenth [Nineteenth] Corps, said to have 2,600 men in it. General H. ordered this brigade to relieve General Gibbon on our front lines at the Potteries, which was accomplished at 6.30 a. m. Gibbon's division then massed in rear of our line in reserve. 10.35 a. m., a staff officer from General Sheridan reported to General Hancock that the enemy were moving on his (Sheridan's) command near Ruffin's house. General Gibbon immediately ordered to the support of General Sheridan. Before General Gibbon could get up, however, General Sheridan had defeated the enemy, driven him off the field, captured 3 colors and