War of the Rebellion: Serial 087 Page 0624 OPERATIONS IN SE. VA. AND N. C. Chapter LIV.

Search Civil War Official Records

with two pieces of artillery, with which the enemy opened as soon as we came in sight. The Fourth Pennsylvania crossed the stream, mounted, a few hundred yards below, and the Sixteenth Pennsylvania advanced directly in front, and, dismounting, charged across the railroad bridge. At the same time the Fourth Pennsylvania charging on their rear, the rebels surrendered. We captured 170 prisoners, 2 guns, which we spiked, and destroyed their carriages; set fire to the depot and storehouses, containing a large amount of goods; burning also a quantity of hay and corn. In this charge we had as few men killed and several wounded. These were taken off in ambulances, with temporary dressings merely, as we at once started to return when we had accomplished this work of destruction. Just as the Second Brigade had reached Duval's Station the rebel cavalry came down the Halifax road and attacked the Tenth New York Cavalry, which was stationed there. We then set fire to the machine shop and railroad cross-ties, which latter had been collected in some quantify. We withdrew, holding the enemy in check, and in the skirmishing several men were wounded. After crossing the Rowanty we tore up the bridge, and the Third Brigade, bringing up the rear, proceeded back by the road by which we had come. The enemy followed a short distance only. We reached camp about 9 o'clock, being completely tired out. The wounded were taken to division hospital, and were found to base 34 in number. The total number of casualties was: killed, 4; wounded, 38; missing 16; total, 58. The next morning the wounded were all carefully examined and operated on.

After this we remained quietly in camp until December 6, when we received orders to be ready to march at 5 a. m. the next morning. Rations and forage for six day were issued. I was directed to take twenty ambulances and one medicine wagon. I made the usual details of surgeons sand attendants for a field hospital, placing Surgeon Donnelly, Second Pennsylvania Cavalry, in charge. We took in the ambulances 250 rations of coffee, sugar, and hard bread, and some blankets and tent-flies. The camps so the regiments were to remain uninjured, as we expected to return, and the hospital also was to remain unchanged, except that on the next day a large number of patients were to be sent to City point. The Thirteenth Pennsylvania, Sixth Ohio, and Battery I, First U. S. Artillery, were to remain in camp, under command of Colonel Kerwin. A few days previously the Fifth Corps had broken camp and moved to the Jerusalem plank road, and it was understood that they were to move with us. On December 7 we broke camp at 5 a. m. and marched by Lee's Mill and Jerusalem plank road to Freeman's Bridge, across the Nottoway River. We found the bridge destroyed, and forded the stream a short distance above. The troops forded, but the ambulances and wagons crossed on a pontoon bridge, which was laid down as soon as the infantry came up. We then proceeded to Sussex Court-House, where we camped for the night. Crawford's division camped at the same place. December 8, we marched at a. m. through Coman's Well to the Halifax road, where we came in sight of the railroad bridge over the Nottoway River. A field-work and some huts were visible on the north side of the river, but they were not occupied. The bridge and huts were burned by the Third Brigade. While this was being accomplished a squadron of the Twenty-first Pennsylvania was sent up (north) the Halifax road and found the enemy's cavalry. The Fourth Pennsylvania was sent to support them, but found the enemy strongly posted, so that it was some time and after considerable skirmishing that they