War of the Rebellion: Serial 095 Page 0332 N. AND SE. VA., N. C., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.

Search Civil War Official Records

I halted him, asking his regiment. This called attention to myself, and the next moment, I was surrounded by the rebels, whom I had supposed to be my men, and sent to the rear, where I found General Gordon, to whom I delivered my sword, and was sent by him to Petersburg. While standing by General Gordon four brigades moved forward toward our works, their commanders reporting to him. While there Captain Swords, of the First Division staff, was brought up, having been captured in Fort Stedman, where he had been directed in search of me, and also Lieutenant Sturgis, of my staff, whom I h ad sent to the left and ordered to report to me at Fort Stedman.

From Petersburg I was sent by rail the same day to the Libby Prison at Richmond, Va., and remained there until the afternoon of April 2, when I, with the other officers confined there, was paroled and sent to this place via Fortress Monroe, where we arrived this morning. There were 16 officers of my brigade captured besides myself, and about 480 enlisted men, all of whom are paroled. I have not the slightest fault to find with any of the troops of my command. All were vigilant and on the alert, both officers and men, and all was done that lay within the bounds of possibility. The enemy, aware of the recent order allowing deserters to bring in their arms, approached my picket-line under that disguise, in small squads, and thus surprised the pickets, capturing them without any alarm being given. I would say, further, that I have personal knowledge that there were three divisions massed to break my brigade line, those of Johnson and Gordon making the attack, and the third being held in reserve, with cavalry and batteries in support.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Bvt. Brigadier General U. S. V., Commanding 3rd Brigadier, 1st Div., 9th Army Corps.


A. A. A. G., First Div., 9th Army Corps, before Petersburg, Va.

Numbers 145. Report of Bvt. Colonel Gilbert P. Robinson, Third Maryland Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, of operations March 25.


March 28, 1865.

SIR: About 3.30 a.m. March 25, the enemy advanced in several columns upon the cluster of artillery positions known as Fort Stedman, Batteries 10,11, and 12. The garrisons of these portions of the line were alarmed by the officers and men of the picket and trench guard, and were immediately in line prepared for attack. The enemy's skirmishers, advancing with clubbed muskets and with their bayonets, broke the picket-line in front of Fort Stedman and advanced to the abatis. The Fourteenth New York Artillery and the Twenty-ninth Massachusetts Volunteers, the garrisons of Stedman, 10 and 11, were under arms and made a stout resistance. At about 4 a.m. General McLaughlen proceeded to the lines, sending one aide to the Fifty-seventh Massachusetts to order them into line, another to the left of the brigade to see that they were on the alert and prepared for action, and taking another with him.