had been torn up when I received from Colonel Voris information that the enemy were about to attack him, and that fouror five regiments were endeavoring to turn his right. At the same time I noticed that the fire of his artillery, which had been kept up at intervals during the morning, had become much more frequent. Work on the road was immediately suspended and the command was hurried up the turnpike to the threatened point. Preceding the troops, I found that Colonel Voris had been forced back from the position which he had occupied somewhat in advance of the Chester road nearly to the road itself; that in order to prevent being outflanked he had been obliged to attenuate his line so as to cover with three regiments a space of nearly a mile, his left being beyond Winfree's house, his right some distance east of the turnpike. One section of artillery (Fourth New Jersey) was on the turnpike, the other (First Connecticut) near Winfree's house. So extensive was the ground covered that much of his line was only a thin chain admirably adapted to deceive the enemy as to the real strength of the force on their front, and undobtedly accomplished that object, for could they have suspected that there were but three small regiments before them they would have swept them away at once. I found at some distance in the rear of Colonel Voris, on the turnpike, Colonel West's colored cavalry, which had been driven in from a reconnaissance of thr turnpike, and a portion of the First New York Mounted Rifles, with two mountain howitzers. A squadron of the former were sent to the left to support the artillery, and subsequently the two howitzers and a few of West's men, dismounted, were used on the extreme right, but with these exceptions nine of the cavalry were brought into action, the ground being very unfavorable to it. The section on the left had nearly exhausted its ammunition. As soon, therefore, as my troops came up from thell's guns replaced it.
The Sixth and Seventh Connecticut were then thrown to the left adf right of the turnpike, respectively, excepting two companis of the Seventh, which were sent to support the section of the Fourth New Jersey. The seventh New Hampshire were sent up to the support of Rockwell's guns. These re-enforcements weresome too early, for while they were moving into their positions the enemy attacked with great impetuosity along the whole front and on the flanks. They obtained but a momentary advantage however, and that only on a single point. One of the guns in the turnpike was taken, but immediately retaken by the two companies of the Seventh Connecticut which supported it. The whole line most gallantly and resolutely stood their ground under heavy fire, and repulsed repeated and determined charges of the enemy. The pressure upon the center was so great that I was obliged to send to that point the only foot soldiers remaining at my disposal, Eaton's engineers and Richardson's provist guard. Both of these organizations behaved in a highly creditable manner. The enemy nowhere gained ground except on the extreme right; here they much outflanked me, and continued to advance even after all attempts to force our left and center had been abandoned. They were finally checked, however, by the two howitzers of the Mounted Rifles, which were brought into action by Adjutant Childs, of the Sixty-seventh Ohio, the dismounted cavalry, and the arrival from the rear of Gibbs' battery (D), First U. S. Artillery. During the action I sent to Colonel Howell, at Ware Bottom Church, requesting him to shell the enemy's left flank. he did so, and the brisk cannonade which he opened doubtless contributed to disconcert the attack on the right. After the cessation of the action I
78 R R - VOL LI, PT I