about three-quarters of a mile in extent. The opposing batteries were posted on the slope of a conical hill to the left, just under cover of a slight eminence to the front and center, and again near a dense woods on our right, the pieces pretty well masked and each position commanding ours. I do not think they outnumbered us in guns, but one battery on the hill slope, of two guns, was evidently of heavier metal. Their practice was not of a superior order, judging from the large amount of shot hurled at us and the results as appended to this report. The battle commenced in earnest with artillery about 3 p. m. For two hours about sixty cannon, mostly rifled, were playing into each other without cessation, the distance between the combatants averaging about 1,400 yards. Our batteries were directed upon theirs, but turned upon their infantry whenever discovered. At 5 p. m. Major-General Banks directed the artillery was also advancing in force, and opportunity being favorable to fire over the heads of our men with safety, the cannonading was resumed and continued until night ended the conflict. Though the day was intensely warm and our position such as to receive a converging fire from the enemy, officers and men stood firm and unflinching to the end. Captains McGilvery, Robinson, and Roemer were constantly under fire, working their guns with coolness and discrimination. Captain Knap, Lieutenant Muhlenberg, and Lieutenant Cushing were more immediately under my observation during that terrible afternoon, and I am sure I do them but justice in saying never were men more earnest in their work. Well done, I cant ruly say for officers, non-commissioned, and privates of all the batteries. That their afternoon's work proved very destructive to the enemy is to my mind beyond question. At dark the batteries were retired about half a mile to the rear, during which movement a gun and caisson were lost by becoming mired and entangled in a small stream. They could not be extricated before the enemy's sharpshooters had reached them. The gun, however, was spiked and its limber and horses saved. No other loss in material. The batteries not in action were posted favorably in rear of the field for such service as the exigencies of the conflict might create. We had but little occasion for using canister, and the ammunition proved, generally, to be of good quality, the total rounds expended being 3,213. The following batteries were engaged: Company F, Fourth U. S. Artillery, Lieutenant Muhlenberg in command; Captain Jos. M. Knap's Pennsylvania battery; Captain J. Roemer's L, Second New York; Captain F. McGilvery, Sixth Maine; Captain O. W. Robinson, Fourth Maine. Lieutenant E. R. Geary, of Knap's battery, was slightly wounded in the elbow.
C. L. BEST,
Captain Fourth Artillery, Chief of Artillery.
Report of Captain James Thompson, Independent Battery, Pennsylvania Light Artillery.
CEDAR CREEK, VA., August 9, 1862.
SIR: Having arrived upon the ground at dark, and when near the wood through which the road passes, I found the road blocked by troops, and ordered to wheel to the right by General McDowell, and not