War of the Rebellion: Serial 095 Page 0710 N. AND SE. VA., N. C., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.

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the Vaughan road, and formed line on the left of the Third Division, the left flank resting on the run. Scouting parties ere sent out at different points, who ascertained the position of the enemy's skirmish line to be about thre-quarters of a mile distant in my front. At 3.10 p. m. my division advanced in line of battle, through swamps and dense woods, about two miles, when, communication having been established with the Fifth Corps on my left, I halted at dark and bivouacked.

March 30, advanced at 6 a. m. in line of battle, as on the previous day, through an almost impassable country, and halted at 9 a. m. to reform my line along the Dabney's Mill road. At 3 a. m. advanced to the road leading from the Crow house to the Boydton plank road, with my left resting at the latter and connecting with the Fifth Corps. The Second Brigade was sent to corduroy the Dabney's Mill road, which, owing to the heavy rain, was in a very bad condition. Temporary works were thrown up and the command bivouacked for the night.

March 31, at 2.30 a. m. I received orders to relieve the line occupied by the Fifth Corps on my left as soon as I should be relieved by troops of the Third Division from the line I then held. At 5 a. m., therefore, I moved my command to the left, across the Boydton road, and occupied the breast-works of the Fifth Corps, the Third and Fourth Brigades being in the return line along the Boydton road. At 10.30 a. m. the troops of the Fifth Corps, thus relieved be me, passed through my line to my front and left, entered the woods, and soon became engaged with the enemy. The enemy apparently assumed the offensive and attacked the Fifth Corps, the flanks of both the contending parties being presented to me. They were covered, however, by Licking Run, upon which the enemy evidently relied for protection. The Fifth corps was being rapidly pressed back toward the Gravelly run bridge on the Boydton road. Large numbers of men of the Fifth Corps straggled back in disorder through the lines of the fourth brigade, and a guard from that brigade was deployed in rear of my position to stop them and turn them back. At about 12.30 p. m. I received orders from Major-General Humphreys to go to the relief of the Fifth Corps troops, then engaged. The Third and Fourth Brigades were immediately advanced in line of battle across the creek above mentioned, the Second Brigade in reserve, and attacked the enemy directly in flank and rear. His force was found to consist of three lines of battle. This attack, striking the enemy so suddenly and unexpectedly, completely routed them. They gave way in perfect confusion. The two brigades advanced steadily, sweeping down the entire front of the Fifth Corps, driving the enemy before them until 3.30 p. m., at which time the White Oak road was crossed by the left of the Fourth Brigade, and the enemy having taken to his entrenchments the pursuit was discontinued. In the beginning of the action, when the Third and Fourth Brigades attacked, I directed the Fifth New Hampshire Volunteers, of the first Brigade, to charge upon the enemy's line of works, as I was convinced from observation, corroborated by reports of prisoners, that it was entirely unoccupied. Instead of carrying out the order the regiment oblique so far to the left that it struck the right of the Third Brigade, then engaged, and the opportunity was lost. The remainder of the First Brigade advanced immediately afterward and continued the line to the right and rear. At this time the Third Brigade was yet advancing, driving the enemy rapidly, capturing numerous prisoners, and in the One hundredth and eleventh New York Volunteers, a battle-flag. Their advance created a gap between their right and the left of the First Brigade, and the Second Brigade was therefore brought from its position