War of the Rebellion: Serial 087 Page 0571 Chapter LIV. THE RICHMOND CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

breaking it. Our line, however, maintained its position until the enemy was upon our flank and rear, when I received orders to fall back in good order, which I did. On reaching the road before mentioned I halted and again faced the enemy; I again received orders to fall back, which I did in perfect order until reaching the swamp, by which we were cut off from the rest of the brigade. As we were about entering the swamp the enemy's cavalry charged upon our left flank, pouring in several volleys as the men were forcing their way with great difficulty through the swamp, tangled with vines and brambles. At this point I lost 2 officers and 21 men. Adjt. J. E. Siebert, a most valuable officer, fell while steadying and encouraging the men; Captain Oliver Blood also fell here mortally wounded, and was taken by the enemy. He was also a meritorious officer. Of the men captured quite a number were wounded, but the exact number I am not able to state. After extricating ourselves from the swamp I rallied and reformed the regiment as speedily as possible and took position a little to the left of the Pegram house in a belt of woods. In conjunction with Major Stearns, of the Sixtieth Ohio, I threw out skirmishers to protect our left flank, connecting with the One hundred and ninth New York. It was now dark. We lay upon our arms until midnight, when our pickets were relieved by the Twenty-fourth New York Cavalry, and we moved back and took position on the ridge near the Clements' house west of the Peebles house; here, by daylight, we had thrown up a good breast-work, with pickets well out in front. By 7 a. m. all stragglers had rejoined the regiment and at that hour we moved down by the right flank into the flat west of the Peebles house, where we threw up a second line of breast-works. At this time our skirmishers were driven in, but the attack did not reach the main line. These works we occupied until the next morning, the rain meanwhile falling in torrents, making our position on the flat very disagreeable.

At about 8 o'clock on the morning of Sunday, October 2, 1864, we again advanced in line, the Forty-sixth New York being upon our right, until we reached the Pegram house, when the enemy opened some light guns upon us, which did us no damage. We next moved by the left flank a short distance, into an open field, and threw up another line of breast-works, which we occupied until near night, when we were again withdrawn and took position near the rebel fort in front of the Peebles house, where we felled timber and threw up the fourth line of breast-works within two days. The next day we went into camp on the same ground, where we remain at the present time. On the 8th instant we participated in a reconnaissance on the enemy's right flank, in which we did not become actually engaged nor did we suffer any loss. This regiment was assigned no special duty, except to cover the withdrawal of the troops, which was successfully done, this regiment coming in after dark.

Appended is a list of casualties on the 30th ultimo.*

I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,

BYRON M. CUTCHEON,

Lieutenant-Colonel. Commanding Twentieth Michigan Volunteers.

Captain THOMAS MATHEWS,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, 2nd Brigadier, 1st Div., 9th Army Corps.

---------------

* Embodied in table, p. 141.

---------------