War of the Rebellion: Serial 087 Page 0208 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LIV.

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Corps had returned from its position on the north side of the James River near Deep Bottom to its camp on our line and re-enforced the line weakened by the withdrawal of the Fifth Corps to the left. Reports were made by the several stations on our front during the 21st of the movement of the enemy's forces, none of which were of any great importance. During the day General Meade moved two divisions of the Second Corps to the Weldon railroad at Six-Mile Tavern, where one of them was placed at work destroying the track in the direction of Reams' Station. On the 22nd the information received from the signal stations indicated that several bodies of the enemy's cavalry had come from the direction of Richmond and passed south on the west side of the Weldon railroad. A considerable body of infantry was also observed coming from opposite our right and massing along the railroad about one mile south of the lead-works. This body of infantry was immediately placed at work throwing up entrenchments in that vicinity. This force occupied the same position on the morning of the 23rd and from all appearances had labored upon their works during the whole night, so much so that their line presented quite a formidable appearance when it was sufficiently light to observe it. No movements of bodies of troops were reported during the day, although a number of stragglers reported moving from direction of Richmond toward Petersburg from daylight until noon might indicate that a large body of troops had passed over that route during the night. Lieutenant George J. Clarke established a new station of observation near the Weldon railroad in front of the Fifth Corps this day, from which a very good view of a portion of the enemy's lines was had. On the succeeding day the enemy appeared more active. In the morning two divisions of the Second Corps proceeded by a circuitous route to Reams' Station and commenced to destroy the railroad below that point. The enemy, probably to check that movement, moved about 12,000 infantry in that direction and made several other minor movements, all of which were observed and immediately reported by the stations in our front.

On the morning of the 25th the enemy made a heavy attack upon the line of the Second Corps near Reams' Station, and a severe engagement resulted. During this attack Captain Thickstun occupied a station upon the skirmish line until it was driven back. During the night the Second Corps retired from Reams' Station, having accomplished the work for which it had been ordered there. Some important messages were intercepted by our stations on the right from the enemy's signal stations and promptly reported. The enemy the next day returned the force which had assaulted the Second Corps on the day previous toward our right and proceeded to strengthen the line which had been so much weakened by the withdrawal of that force. On our part no movement was made and the enemy were sufficiently occupied in re-arranging their line to prevent them making any other demonstration. On the 27th no movement of large bodies of the enemy was seen, although some of his cavalry was reported moving around our extreme left, going southward, and small bodies of infantry were reported as in motion in vicinity of lead-works. Working parties were diligently employed upon his works in our front.

For the two succeeding days the enemy appeared remarkably quiet, and although reports from our stations were regularly and frequently made, no movements of interest transpired. On the 30th the only change visible was the movement of about 3,000 infantry from Petersburg toward our left, from which nothing was heard afterward, but it was supposed that they were intended to re-enforce their line opposite