enemy, who had now got behind the first line of battle and were rolling it up. The breaking of this brigade let the enemy in on the flank of Captain McKnight's (Twelfth New York Independent) battery, which was captured without any fault of officers or men. The panic along the line had become such that three or four small regiments (hardly averaging 100 muskets) surrendered in a body when summoned to do so. The next regiment in line was the Twentieth Massachusetts Volunteers, whose commander, Captain H. L. Patten, taking advantage of a slight turn in the breast-works, and making a partial change of front, checked the enemy's advance and stopped all further retreat and loss. There seems to have been no time during this most unfortunate and disgraceful affair when the same promptness and spirit might not have ended the disasters of the day. Efforts were at once made by the division commanders and myself to restore the line within the breast-works. The enemy attacked smartly on two or three points, but were easily repulsed. At 4 p. m. I reported to the major-general commanding that my lines were re-established and the troops again in condition. My first information of the attack of the enemy was through a staff officer of General Mott reporting that General Barlow's line had been broken and his own left had been turned. I immediately rode to the line, where I learned that General Gibbon's battery had been taken. I at once ordered him to retake it, using his division for the purpose. I then proceeded to re-establish General Barlow's line, and on satisfying myself that this was safe I returned to the right, where I found that a brigade of the Fifth Corps had arrived for support. I again directed General Gibbon to retake the battery using this brigade also for that purpose. His report will show the action taken by him in the matter. During the attempted advance there was no movement, so far as I can ascertain, of the right of the Sixth Corps. The formation was in two lines, each division having a front of two brigades, two being held in reserve. I have already stated the disposition of the reserve brigades of the left (First) division.
There was no reason, either in the force engaged or in the character of the ground-equally unfavorable to them as to us-why the enemy's attack should not have been promptly repelled. I attribute failure to the extraordinary losses among the commanding, staff, and other officers in this command, to the large proportion of new troops assigned to this corps to replace veterans, to the fact that the Sixth Corps did not advance simultaneously, and that in consequence my line was taken in flank, and at points even in reverse, creating a panic, and completing a withdrawal to my line of that morning, with considerable loss.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
D. B. BIRNEY,
[General S. WILLIAMS, Assistant Adjutant-General.]
Numbers 19. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Charles H. Morgan, Assistant Inspector-General, U. S. Army, Chief of Staff, of operations June 22.
HEADQUARTERS SECOND CORPS, June 25, 1864.
GENERAL: The following is my recollection of the affair of the 22nd instant:
A short time before 5 in the morning General Birney directed me to order the advance of the line until the position of the enemy was en