a dash upon us. My old brigade held their ground nobly. The One hundred and thirty-third being new to fire broke and run, with the exception of two or three companies. I respectfully beg leave here to state that the conduct of Colonel Innis was irreproachable. I rode up and down the line and saw him cool and composed and trying to rally his men. My horse was shot under me at this time. I wish to say to the general that these men are unused to fire; they have to be educated to it. My belief is that they will never break again. I believe they are brave men; they came back with a cheer, those that I saw.
I wish to speak in the highest terms of praise of my old brigade, field and staff, line officers, and enlisted men, and all the artillery that served with me. Braver men never drew a sword, carried a musket, or fired a gun. I have already referred to the conduct of and my indebtedness to Captain Hooker, my assistant adjutant-general. I now desire to commend also my aide-de-camp, Lieutenant McGregor.
I have been obliged to make use of an amanuensis to make out my report. I have also the honor to transmit the report of the Thirty-ninth Illinois Volunteers herewith.
I have the honor to be, captain your obedient servant,
JOSHUA B. HOWELL,
Colonel Eighty-fifth Pennsylvania Vols., Commanding Brigade.
Captain P. A. DAVIS,
Numbers 251. Report of Captain Lorey A. Baker, Thirty-ninth Illinois Infantry, of operations June 16.
HDQRS. THIRTY-NINTH REGIMENT ILLINOIS VOLUNTEERS,
June 18, 1864.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that the Thirty-ninth Regiment of Illinois Volunteers, in obedience to orders, left our intrenchments on the morning of the 16th at about 7.30 a.m. Arrived at the second line of rebel works we deployed as skirmishers and advanced past their last line of rifle-pits until our left wing rested on the Petersburg pike, our right extending along the ridge (beyond the house and shop) to the cross-road and a little east of the pike. The enemy first appeared in force upon our right, where we had some pretty severe skirmishing, until we were ordered to fall back, which we did gradually and in good order, as far as their last line of rifle-pits. This position we held for some time, until ordered to retreat across the open field to the second line of rebel works. We here rested for a short time and then marched into camp, where we arrived at about 6.30 p.m. As soon as the men had taken supper ordered on picket, where the regiment has remained as the advanced line to this time. What our losses have been it will be impossible to ascertain until we are relieved. The regiment is much exhausted, having been without rest since the morning of the 16th. We took a number of prisoners, probably 75, during the skirmishing on the 16th.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
L. A. BAKER,
Captain, Commanding Regiment.
[Captain P. A DAVIS,