the remaining four companies of the Forty-seventh Pennsylvania. About this time, I received an order from General Emory to move rapidly to the left, to support the left of the Second Division, which was said to be giving way before the enemy. I formed line in rear of the left of Second Division, and in a few minutes, at about noon, by order of General Emory, I relieved Colonel Molineux's brigade of the Second Division, with the Eighth Vermont and Twelfth Connecticut, Lieutenant-Colonel Peck, commanding Twelfth Connecticut, having been fatally wounded by a piece of shell while forming his line preparatory to advancing and relieving Colonel Molineux.
The Eighth and Twelfth advanced at double-quick in good style, and immediately became hotly engaged with the enemy. While making disposition of the Eighth and Twelfth, the One hundred and sixtieth New York, which I had ordered to advance on the right of the Twelfth, in the woods on its right, was moved to the right and put into action with the First Brigade, as I afterward learned, by order of General Dwight. Between 2 and 3 p. m. the One hundred and sixtieth returned to its position where I had left it, and after being supplied with ammunition. When it was almost to the Twelfth the Eighth Corps charged the rebel left and broke it, and as soon as it was discovered by Colonel Thomas, Eighth Vermont, he ordered a charge by the Eighth and Twelfth into the woods in front, which was made in splendid style, driving the rebels completely out of the woods several hundred yards to a stone wall, where they formed a temporary lodgement. General Emory ordered me not let the Eighth and Twelfth charge into the timber, but they went so rapidly I could not stop them until they were in the edge of the woods, when I ordered the One hundred and sixtieth forward to their support, and advanced through the woods to the opposite edge, when I was met by a out murderous volley from the enemy behind the stone well. I ordered the Eighth and Twelfth with the One hundred and sixtieth, and ordered the Twelfth to fall back and get ammunition and join the command as soon as possible. As soon as I determined to continue the advance commenced by my regiments without orders, I notified General Emory also that I could hold the woods. While reporting to General Emory, General Dwight was on the right, where I could not report to him. By request of General Crook I moved my regiments to the left, so as to enfilade the enemy behind the stone fence, and in conjunction with General Upton, of the Sixth Corps, soon drove them with heavy loss. After this my command was not again engaged, the enemy not making a stand north of Winchester afterward.
My loss was heavy in officers, and among them Lieutenant-Colonel Peck, a gallant officer and a polished gentleman, fatally wounded by a fragment of a shell while preparing to go into action. I deeply sympathize with his many friends in their distress for his loss. Lieutenant-Colonel Van Petten was wounded early in the action quite painfully, but like the gallant soldier he is did not leave the field until after the enemy had.
While all did well, officers and men, I should not do justice to my conviction of duty did I fail to mention Colonel Thomas, Eighth Vermont, for his gallantry and coolness at all times.
My staff did their duty in a most efficient and gallant style. Lieutenant Witherell, acting aide-de-camp and provost-marshal, was the only one struck, and he but slightly.