My brigade commanders deserve especial praise for the gallant manner in which they led their troops, and the valuable assistance rendered me in carrying out the orders received from the corps commander. The First Brigade [comprising the Fifty-sixth, Fifty-seventh, and Fifty-ninth Massachusetts Volunteers] was commanded by Colonel J. P. Gould; the Second Brigade [composed of the Twenty-first and Twenty-ninth Massachusetts Volunteers, the One hundredth Pennsylvania Volunteers, and the One hundred and seventy-ninth New York Volunteers] was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Joseph H. Barnes; the Third Brigade [composed of the Fourteenth New York Volunteer Artillery, and the Second Provisional Pennsylvania Heavy Artillery] was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel B. G. Barney.
The batteries attached to my division, under my chief of artillery, Captain John B. Eaton, Twenty-seventh New York Battery, were brought up and placed in different positions during the day. The Second Maine Battery, Captain A. F. Thomas [four 3-inch rifled], and Fourteenth Massachusetts Battery, Captain J. W. B. Wright [four 10-pounder Parrotts], were ordered to the front from their park, about 9 o'clock on the morning of the 17th, and that of Captain Thomas placed in position at the point of woods near Battery 14 of the rebel line of works, and that of Captain Wright behind the works a few rods to the left of Captain Thomas. Fire was at once opened on a half sunken battery of rifled pieces in the enemy's lines which had been very annoying during the morning, from the accuracy of its fire. The excellent practice of both Captains Thomas and Wright soon drove the enemy from his guns, which they abandoned entirely after making several ineffectual attempts to withdraw them. About 11 a.m. Captain Wright's and Captain Thomas' batteries were moved, by orders from the corps commander, farther to the left, on the same line of works, where Captain Wright was placed in position behind Battery 15, and did good execution during the charge made by my division in the afternoon. The battery of Captain Thomas was ordered into position behind Battery 16, but all the approaches thereto being covered by the enemy's musketry fire it was unable to take position until the attack was made by the First Division, when it opened fire and maintained it with good effect. About 4 p.m. I ordered the Twenty-seventh New York Battery, Captain John B. Eaton [six light 12-pounder guns], to take position at the Shands house within 1,000 yards of the enemy's lines, and during the charge of my division on the works in front this battery poured a most destructive fire into the enemy, destroying two caissons and killing a number of the horses of the battery in front of the left of my lines.
My thanks are due to Captain Eaton, chief of artillery, for his valuable services on this occasion. I respectfully recommend to the favorable consideration of the War Department for brevets First Lieutenant Robert P. McKibbin, Fourth U. S. Infantry, commissary of musters, and First Lieuts. George M. Randall and William H. Powell, Fourth U. S. Infantry, aides-de-camp. These officers behaved with marked gallantry, and distinguished themselves throughout the engagement by their courage and valor. Lieutenant McKibbin was quite seriously wounded in the neck near the close of the engagement, and was compelled to leave the field.
My thanks are due to the remaining officers of my staff, as follows: First Lieutenant C. J. Mills, Fifty-sixth Massachusetts Volunteers, acting assistant adjutant-general; First Lieutenant Lewis, Twenty-first Massachusetts Volunteers, provost-marshal; and Captain D. R. Roice, Third New Jersey Cavalry, acting aide-de-camp, for the cheerfulness and