War of the Rebellion: Serial 095 Page 0738 N. AND SE. VA., N. C., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter LVIII.

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Numbers 40. Report of Major John McE. Hyde, Thirty-ninth New York Infantry.


April 10, 1865.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of this regiment since the 28th ultimo:

In compliance with orders, the Thirty-third Regiment New York Veteran Volunteers left camp at 8 a. m. March 29 with the brigade, and moved across Hatcher's Run, where line of battle was formed at 11 a. m. At 4 p. m. an advance was ordered, and we moved forward without opposition until after dark, when we bivouacked for the night. At daylight March 30 the advance was continued in line of battle, without opposition, until we reached the Quaker road. A line of breast-works was constructed a short distance beyond the road, and bivouac ordered for the night. Early in the morning of the 31st we moved to the left and occupied a line of breast-works on the Boydton plank road, thrown up by the Fifth Corps. At 10 a. m. the brigade advanced for the purpose of attacking the enemy. After moving in line of battle nearly a mile we struck their skirmish line. A left wheel was made by the brigade for the purpose of attacking the enemy on his flank. As the Thirty-ninth was on the extreme right men were deployed to protect that flank of the brigade until the entire regiment was deployed as skirmishers. The First Brigade advancing over my line I withdrew my regiment and rejoined the brigade. Colonel Funk was wounded in the hip early in the engagement, and I have since been in command of the regiment. After rejoining the brigade the division line was straightened and breast-works thrown up.

Before daylight on the morning of the 1st instant we moved to the rear and occupied the original line of works on the Boydton road, and afterward threw up a new line a short distance in advance. In the afternoon we advanced again [to] the line erected the previous day, and lay there ready to receive an attack, demonstrations being made on different portions of the enemy's lines by other regiments. At 1 a. m. 2nd instant we moved rapidly to the left, and halted at 4 a. m. somewhere near Dinwiddie Court-House. At 6 a. m. we returned and formed line of battle in front of the enemy's works, ready to attack. Soon after it was ascertained that they had evacuated, and we advanced at the double-quick to occupy their works. The colors of the Thirty-ninth were the third on their works. The advance was continued until the enemy was found in an entrenched position on the South Side Railroad. The Third Brigade was ordered to charge them, and although the men were much exhausted from loss of sleep the previous night and the rapid marching they had gone through yet they advanced gallantly through a piece of woods and across an open field, exposed to the fire of two batteries and from the enemy in his breast-works. The Thirty-ninth was on the extreme left of the brigade, and succeeded in reaching the crest of a hill, and if a few shots could have been thrown from a battery of our own I think [they] could have entered the enemy's works. At this time the right of the brigade fell back, and as, from my advanced position, I was in danger of being surrounded I was compelled to fall back. One officer and 2 men, who were unable to keep up on the retreat, were captured at this point. Line was again formed in the edge of the woods, and a skirmish line thrown out on the left and in ad-