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PA Civil War Volunteer Soldiers

One Hundred and Twenty Second Regiment

122nd PA Regimental History

DECEMBER 11-15,1862.-Battle of Fredericksburg, Va.

Numbers 167. Report of Colonel Emlen Franklin, One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Infantry, commanding First Brigade.


Camp near Falmouth,Va., December 17, 1862

CAPTAIN: In continuation of the report of Brigadier-General Piatt, I have the honor to report that, in consequence of the accident to him, I took command of this brigade early on the morning of the 14th instant.

The battery and the two regiments supporting it were withdrawn before daylight to the shelter of the river hill and neighboring houses, and things remained in this position, with scarcely any molestation from the enemy, until night-fall of the 15th., by orders received, that portion of our picket line between the right of the Twelfth New Hampshire and the point where the Fall Hill road crosses the canal was occupied by other troops, an those of this brigade withdrawn.

The rest of the picket line mentioned in General Piatt's report, consisting of the Fall Hill road, stretching to the right from that point toward the river, was held by one of the regiments, eight companies of which were deployed, with two in reserve, from that time until midnight, when, it pursuance of orders received,six of the companies were withdrawn to the reserve, and the two remaining were extended over the whole line. About 2.30 a.m. on the morning of the 16th, these two companies were withdrawn from the Fall Hill road, and picketed upon the inside line of the canal, and the reserve drawn to the left in support of this new line.

At 4 o'clock in-pursuance of orders received, the two regiments in reserve were marched across the upper pontoon bridge to their former camp, near Falmouth, and at 6.30 a.m. the pickets were called in, and the remaining regiment crossed the bridge, all of which was executed without confusion and in good order.

Casualties: Wounded, 4; missing 5.

It is reported that Lieutenant John P. Weise, of Company A., One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers, who was detached to the ambulance corps, was taken prisoner by the enemy on the 14th.

Very respectfully submitted.

Colonel One hundred and twenty-second Pa. Infty., Commanding Brigadier


Assistant Adjutant-General.

122nd, Series I, Vols. 19, 21, 25;Series III, Vols. 3.

October 14, 1862.

Colonel J. C. KELTON,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters of the Army:

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that, in compliance with the instructions of the General-in-Chief, I have made the following dispositions:
All the troops south of the Potomac are to be on the alert.

General Sigel has been reminded that his command is advanced to Centreville and Fairfax Court-House as a corps of observation merely, and that if menaced by a superior force of the enemy, he is to fall back to the lines of defense. He has been informed that General Heintzelman is to advance a part of his force to cover such a movement, should it become necessary. General Heintzelman has received corresponding orders. Cavalry has been sent out the roads from Centreville and Fairfax Court-House, and the roads along the river toward Leesburg, to observe and give timely notice of the enemy's movements. The mobile forces south of the Potomac, all commanded by General Heintzelman, are disposed as follows: Sigel's corps has one division (Stahel's) at Centreville, and one division (Schurz's) and the unassigned regiments of the corps at Fairfax Court-House. Sickles' division (late Hooker's) has two brigades south of Hunting Creek, two regiments and a battery at Upton's Hill, and the remainder of the Third Brigade near the Seminary. Of Whipple's division, Piatt's brigade occupies Munson's Hill, and Carroll's brigade is encamped near Arlington. Abercrombie's division (new) has one regiment, with a regular battery (De Russy's) at Munson's Hill, and the remainder of the division near Fort Ethan Allen, nearly a brigade being on the turnpike toward Langley. Bayard's cavalry division, besides the forces sent out and the brigade detached to Sigel, has a brigade at Upton's Hill and another in rear of Fort Ward. The commanders of the defenses north of the river have been instructed to be on the alert. Mounted orderlies have been furnished to the commanders at Forts Alexander, Pennsylvania, and Lincoln, and Colonel Haskin has requested the superintendent of military telegraphs to reopen temporarily the telegraph office at Fort Lincoln. A squadron of cavalry, reporting direct to these headquarters, has been sent to Offutt's Cross-Roads, with instructions to observe the crossings in that direction, having an advanced post at Coon's Ferry and a strong detachment at Great Falls, picketing above and below. On the appearance of the enemy in force, this cavalry is to fall back on the city,


Sending in written reports in advance by mounted messengers, and also notifying the detachment of cavalry at Rockville.

The detachment of cavalry previously stationed at Rockville is ordered to be on the alert, and, on the appearance of the enemy in force, to fall back on the city, sending in written reports in advance. The two regiments guarding the railway from the lines to Annapolis Junction are to be kept in hand, strengthening their guards to-night, and preparing quietly to obey such further orders as may become necessary. To this railway brigade I attached, a few days since, a detachment of cavalry from my escort, for picket and patrol duty. The commanders responsible for the bridges of the Potomac are ordered to strengthen their guards to-night and keep them extra vigilant. The orders of the General-in-Chief in regard to precautions in the way of buckets, &c., in case of fire, have been communicated to them.

General Casey's command, also ordered to be held quietly in readiness to obey any orders that may become necessary, is disposed as follows: Two batteries and three regiments of infantry, with two regiments which have just arrived and are equipped, near Fort Albany; four regiments of infantry on Capitol Hill, and a battery, short of horses, near the Bladensburg toll-gate. I have communicated with General Stoneman, now reporting to General McClellan, from whose telegram, a copy of which has been furnished the General-in-Chief, it will be seen that he is prepared, should the enemy cross, to concentrate his command and fall upon them. I will give such further orders and make such new dispositions as circumstances may require, or the General-in-Chief direct. A staff officer will be at my headquarters during the night.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

October 14, 1862-12 p.m.

Brigadier General S. WILLIAMS,
Asst. Adjt. General , Headquarters Army of the Potomac:

Telegram received 11.25 p.m. I sent you list of Stoneman's troops by mail of Sunday. Have not means of repeating it to-night, but will in the morning.

Whipple's division consists of Piatt's brigade, in which are the Eighty-sixth New York, 462; One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania, 841, and One hundred and twenty-fourth New York, 950; total, 2,253. Carroll's brigade, Eighty-fourth Pennsylvania, 242; One hundred and tenth Pennsylvania, 234, and One hundred and sixty third New York, say 700; total, 1,176. Also the following unassigned: One company engineers Page428 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA.


75; Twelfth New Hampshire, 1010; Battery H, First Ohio Artillery, 144; total of division, 4,658. The strength of Stoneman's division is between 9,000 and 10,000. It is at Poolesville, and reports to General McClellan. Whipple's division will leave by railway for Knoxville as soon as the General-in-Chief considers it safe to send it from here. It has been under marching orders since telegram of October 10, and is ready to go at any time. Your telegram about the One hundred and nineteenth Pennsylvania will be attended to in the morning; but General Banks didn't know the One hundred and thirty-seventh was a three months' regiment. He understood it was a nine months'.RICH'D B. IRWIN,
Captain, Aide-de-Camp, and Actg. Asst. Adjt. General

Report of Brigadier General A. Sanders Piatt, U. S. Army, of reconnaissance to Manassas Gap, and skirmish.

PIEDMONT, VA., November 7, 1862 - 12.25 a. m.

GENERAL: Your dispatch by signal just received. In compliance therewith, I have to state that, in accordance with the orders received from you, through General Whipple, to make reconnaissance of Manassas Gap, I marched through the gap on the evening of the 5th as far as the cavalry had advanced. We reached that point after dark. The cavalry being in doubt as to the real strength of the enemy, and not being acquainted with the road myself, I deemed it prudent to wait till morning.

On the following morning the cavalry were ordered to join General Averell, and did so. I threw out skirmishers on each side, and, without cavalry, moved forward. In this way we proceeded to the northwest end of the gap, when my advance skirmishers were fired upon by artillery. I immediately placed a section on a commanding point, on the left-hand side of the road, commanding the position occupied by the enemy's artillery, and on the right-hand side another section, commanding the main position of the enemy. Both sections were supported by infantry. I placed one regiment in the center, on the road, so as to be available on either side, or to be rallied upon, if necessary. The infantry were all kept out of sight of the enemy. The artillery of the enemy was soon silenced, and they were forced to retire from their position. Not yet satisfied as to their real strength, I ordered up a skirmishing party on the mountain, to drive in their vedettes, which they did, capturing two cavalry horses. I immediately changed the section on the left of the road, placing it in a commanding position on the right. I ordered up the One hundred and twenty-fourth New York to move on the right, so as to flank their position, and the One hundred and twenty second on the left, for the same purpose, while the Eighty-sixth New York moved up the center, in front. The One hundred and twenty-second, owing to the inequality of the ground, and not fully understanding the order, failed to come up in time. Finding this, I threw them on the right to support the artillery. After a few well-directed shots,


which wounded 2 or 3 of their men (the enemy's), if not killing some, they were routed from their position. The One hundred and twenty-fourth having reached its point of destination, drove them completely out of the gap, passing to the valley beyond. The enemy changed the position of their guns five times, in order to get the range of my infantry, intending to rake their ranks and then precipitately retire. This they failed to do. Having dispersed them as far as possible with infantry, I made a careful view of the valley from the main point, whence I was able to discover the three camps and park of wagons noticed in my signal report to-day.

I was informed by a citizen, living in the mouth of the gap, where the enemy was posted, that General Hill's forces were at Front Royal, and he himself being present in the gap at the commencement of the skirmish.

Having received an order from General Whipple to join him at Waterloo, if the force in the gap did not require the presence, of my brigade, which I did not think it did, as I look upon the enemy there as a strong outpost, to prevent an attack in the valley without notice to them, and being relieved by a squadron of cavalry reporting to me, and being without provisions, tents, or blankets for my men, I gave what instructions I deemed necessary to the cavalry officer, and marched back to this point.

En route, at Markham, I met Generals Pleasonton's and Averell's trains, where I was able to obtain provisions for one company. This company I left for the better protection of the train, ordering them to report to me if anything occurred.

Here I await further orders, and am, general, your obedient servant,



No.2. Organization of the Union forces at the battle of Fredericksburg,Va.,
December 11-15,1862.


* * *

Brigadier General GEORGE STONEMAN.

* * *
THIRD DIVISION. Brigadier General AMIEL W.WHIPPLE. First Brigade. [1.] Brigadier General A.SANDERS PIATT.* [2.] Colonel EMLEN FRANKLIN. 86th New York,Lieutenant Colonel Barna J.Chapin. 124th New York,Colonel A.Van Horne Ellis. 122nd Pennsylvania,Colonel Emlen Franklin.Numbers 165. Report of Brigadier General Amiel W.Whipple, U.S. Army,
commanding Third Division.HEADQUARTERS THIRD DIVISION, THIRD ARMY CORPS, December 18, 1862

CAPTAIN: In compliance with orders from Brigadier-General Stoneman, commanding Third Corps, my division left its encampment on the morning of the 11th instant, and at 8.30 o'clock deployed in the ravine to the left and rear of the Phillips house. It consisted of Piatt's and Carroll's brigades, Potter's regiment, and two batteries, viz, Eleventh New York and Second (Excelsior) New York, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Hayward; Battery H, First Ohio Artillery, having been temporarily detached for service on the north bank of the river. Piatt's brigade was composed of the One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers, Colonel Franklin; the One hundred and twenty-fourth New York Volunteers, Colonel Ellis, and the Eighty-sixth New York Volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel Chapin. Carroll's brigade contained the Eighty-fourth Pennsylvania Volunteers, Colonel Bowman; the One hundred and tenth Pennsylvania Volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel Crowther, and the One hundred and sixty-third New York Volunteers, Major Byrne. The Twelfth New Hampshire Volunteers, Colonel Potter, formed an independent command. The Eleventh New York Battery, Captain Von Puttkammer, consisted of six 3-inch rifled pieces; the Second (Excelsior) New York Battery, Captain Bruen, consisted of six light 12-pounder brass pieces, and Battery H, First Ohio Artillery, Lieutenant Norton, consisted of six 3-inch rifled pieces. We remained in position during the day, and bivouacked in the same place at night.

On the morning of the 12th, the division moved as directed to the head of the center bridge. Orders were then received from General Stoneman to move the division over the upper bridge, hold the approaches to the city from the southwest, and, under the orders of General Couch, protect his right flank while moving forward to attack the enemy in front.


In pursuance of this order, at 11 a.m. the head of Piatt's brigade entered the city, but the troops of Couch's corps were so densely massed upon the river bank as to obstruct the passage,and the column was compelled to halt, the pontoon bridge, being crowded and the troops stretching far to the rear. While halted in this position, the enemy observed them and opened a galling fire of shells, which fell near the head of the bridge and into the ranks of the Twelfth New Hampshire Regiment, wounding 2 officers and 5 men, 2 of them severely. The range was remarkably accurate, and, therefore, after crowding the leading regiment upon the Fredericksburg shore, the rest, by direction of General Couch, were retained upon the opposite bank, sheltered as far as possible, at the foot of the slope and in ravines.A portion of the One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers took post at the mills, but subsequently was relieved, to enable the regiment to recross the river and join the division, which was directed by General Stoneman to bivouac upon the north bank and guard the ford near Falmouth during the night.

Upon the morning of the 13th, orders were received to cross the river and send one brigade to report to General Willcox; with the remained of the division to guard the approaches to the city from the west, and protect the right flank of Howard's division while making an attack in front. Piatt's brigade was placed in position; the One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers deployed as skirmishers upon the Fall Hill road, between the two canals, above the city and upon the crest of the ridge upon which stands Mrs. Washington's monument, and two companies of the One hundred and twenty-fourth New York Volunteers were advanced in front of Kenmore mansion, supported by the Twelfth New Hampshire Volunteers, the remainder of Piatt's brigade in reserve. Of the two batteries four pieces were placed by General Piatt at the upper end of the city, to sweep the flats and bridges across the canal and four others near the upper junction of Charles and Prince Edward streets with Fauquier and Lewis streets, to command the approaches from the front. Carroll's brigade reached its position just in time to move forward to the support of a portion of Willcox's corps, which, having suffered severely was retiring. He was directed to take the crest of a hill in front.

This little command, numbering scarcely 600 muskets, with a loud shout rushed upon the assailants, and,after a sharp engagement, drove them from the ridge and held the crest as directed, successfully resisting the efforts of superior forces striving to regain it.

For a notice of the many who distinguished themselves in this affair, I would refer to the reports of brigade and regimental commanders.

I beg leave, however, to mention in terms of commendation the bravery and skill of Colonel Carroll himself, who, by the energy and rapidity of his attack, gained success with a small sacrifice of life. At night, the only time, when, from his position, he could communicate with the rear, as the enemy covered the space not only with the fire from their batteries but also with that of sharpshooters, Colonel Carroll sent a staff officers to report that his ammunition was nearly exhausted. Lieutenant Eddy, my aide-de-camp and ordnance officer, accompanied by Lieutenant Weise, of the ambulance corps, and an orderly went out to find the position of Carroll's brigade, for the purpose of forwarding the needed supplies. Neither of the parties has since been heard from. They probably entered the enemy's lines and were captured. Carroll's brigade retained its position until the night of the 14th, when it was


relieved and sent to the rear of the Twelfth New Hampshire Volunteers, to strengthen the right flank.

Meanwhile Piatt's brigade and Potter's regiment had been successively placed in front to guard against an attack or check an advance of the enemy, exposed to the fire of their batteries, and occasionally exchanging shots with sharpshooters from rifle-pits. Both officers and men would have preferred to bear a part in more exciting conflicts, but, with rare exceptions, they performed the duties assigned them, under arms and under fire almost continually for three successive days and nights, faithfully watching and coolly prepared for any service that might be required.

On the 15th, the front of my line of defense was diminished, the left flank resting upon the canal basin and connecting with Griffin's right. Upon his left, General Humphreys relieved me of the portion of the line in front of Kenmore. Having been placed under the orders of General Butterfield, and directed by him to prepare for the defense of Fredericksburg upon the right, earthworks were thrown up at the corner of Charles and Fauquier streets, for the protection of a section of Captain Bruen's battery. The brick warehouses at the basin and the mills at lower canal bridge were loop-holed for musketry. It was designed to throw up earthworks for the remaining batteries at the brick dwelling beyond the canal, but the order was subsequently countermanded.

At night I was directed to resume the defense of that portion of the line just taken by Griffin's division. The change of forces required for this was effected at 2.30 a.m. on the 16th.

At 4 a.m. I received the order to send the main body of my troops across the upper bridge; to withdraw my reserves to the canal banks, and send two officers to report to General Sykes, who was charged with the withdrawal of the pickets. These orders were complied with, and the whole command withdrew in perfect order to the position assigned to it on this side of the river.

In the withdrawal of the pickets I would call attention to the coolness and presence of mind of the officers and men of the One hundred and twenty-fourth New York Volunteers, on duty at the Fall Hill road, beyond the canal. Colonel Ellis, who was in command, was perfectly prepared to contend, foot by foot, with any force the enemy might throw against him.

I beg leave also to mention, in terms of commendation, the members of my staff,Captain Dalton, assistant adjutant-general, and my aides, Captains Van Horn, Morgan, and Hall, and Lieutenant Nevin: and especially Lieutenant Eddy, whose disappearance is due to persistent efforts in the discharge of duty through well-known peril.

In conclusion, I would state that this division recrossed the Rappahannock with a loss of 19 killed, 91 wounded, and 18 missing.* A list of the casualties is herewith appended. The brave who have fallen are a severe loss. Those who remain have won the confidence of their commander and the morale of the division is better than it was before the battle of Fredericksburg.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, A.W. WHIPPLE, Brigadier-General.Captain ALEXANDER, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters Third Corps.--------------- *But see revised statement, p. 135.---------------page395 CHAP.XXXIII.] BATTLE OF FREDERICKSBURG, VA.Numbers 166. Report of Brigadier General A. Sanders Piatt, U.S. Army,
commanding First Brigade.HEADQUARTERS PIATT'S BRIGADE, Near Falmouth, Va., December 16, 1862

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that I resumed my command on the evening of the 11th instant.

On the morning of the 12th, by direction, my brigade took its place in the division column and moved toward the middle bridge over the Rappahannock. Before reaching this, in pursuance of further orders, we retraced our steps and crossed the Rappahannock at the upper bridge and entered the town of Fredericksburg. The head of my column, upon reaching the top of the bank at Fredericksburg, was forced to halt, on account of a number of troops that were massed in the street. While in this condition, the enemy's batteries opened and commenced shelling the column. I immediately changed the head of my column to the right, and placed the first regiment under cover of the river bank: the two remaining regiments, under my instructions, given through one of my aides, took shelter under the opposite bank of the river. The enemy's batteries ceased firing, when in obedience to orders, I recrossed the river and encamped for the night.

On the morning of the 13th, in pursuance of orders received, my brigade again occupied the advance in the column; crossed the river and took position up the river and on the right of the bridge, placing us on the right flank of the Army of the Potomac. Masking my troops under the hill, I immediately proceeded to relieve the pickets on the extreme right, belonging to General Sully's brigade. This picket consisted of a regiment the line starting perpendicularly to the river; thence bearing to the left and running equidistant from the enemy's works from the first change in direction to the left, till it rested on the right of the Twelfth New Hampshire Volunteers, commanded by Colonel Potter. On making a reconnaissance of the ground in front, I found it advantageous to push the picket lines farther forward, and it was done, on the road that lay between the canal and the race. In this position everything remained until dark, when I placed the Excelsior Battery in position to command the open ground in front, and the other two regiments to the right and left, to support it in case of an attack during the night. Late at night, when the firing ceased, the men lay down in line and slept by their arms.

Of the energy of the officers under my command, and the coolness of the men throughout the whole battle of the 13th, while the shells were flying in every direction over them and bursting among them I cannot speak too highly.

I had the misfortune, by the stumbling of my horse and the loosening of the saddle-girth, to be precipitated to the ground, injuring my back so severely as to render me unable to walk since.

The remainder of the report will be rendered by Colonel Franklin, who took command of the brigade, I being unable to remain upon the field, and have been reported unfit for duty since the morning of the 14th.

Respectfully submitted.

A. SANDERS PIATT, Brigadier-General, Commanding First Brigade, Third Division.Captain HENRY R. DALTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.page396 OPERATIONS IN N. VA., W. VA., MD. AND PA. [CHAP.XXXIII.Numbers 167. Report of Colonel Emlen Franklin, One hundred and twenty-second
Pennsylvania Infantry,
commanding First Brigade.HEADQUARTERS PIATT'S BRIGADE,
Camp near Falmouth,Va., December 17, 1862
CAPTAIN: In continuation of the report of Brigadier-General Piatt, I have the honor to report that, in consequence of the accident to him, I took command of this brigade early on the morning of the 14th instant.

The battery and the two regiments supporting it were withdrawn before daylight to the shelter of the river hill and neighboring houses, and things remained in this position, with scarcely any molestation from the enemy, until night-fall of the 15th., by orders received, that portion of our picket line between the right of the Twelfth New Hampshire and the point where the Fall Hill road crosses the canal was occupied by other troops, an those of this brigade withdrawn.

The rest of the picket line mentioned in General Piatt's report, consisting of the Fall Hill road, stretching to the right from that point toward the river, was held by one of the regiments, eight companies of which were deployed, with two in reserve, from that time until midnight, when, it pursuance of orders received,six of the companies were withdrawn to the reserve, and the two remaining were extended over the whole line. About 2.30 a.m. on the morning of the 16th, these two companies were withdrawn from the Fall Hill road, and picketed upon the inside line of the canal, and the reserve drawn to the left in support of this new line.

At 4 o'clock in-pursuance of orders received, the two regiments in reserve were marched across the upper pontoon bridge to their former camp, near Falmouth, and at 6.30 a.m. the pickets were called in, and the remaining regiment crossed the bridge, all of which was executed without confusion and in good order.

Casualties: Wounded, 4; missing 5.
It is reported that Lieutenant John P. Weise, of Company A.,
One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers,
who was detached to the ambulance corps,
was taken prisoner by the enemy on the 14th.
Very respectfully submitted.EMLEN FRANKLIN,
Colonel One hundred and twenty-second Pa. Infty., Commanding Brigadier
Assistant Adjutant-General.No.108. Reports of Major General Daniel E. Sickles, U.S. Army,
commanding Third Army Corps. HEADQUARTERS THIRD ARMY CORPS, May 20,1863.

GENERAL: I have the honor to transmit the following report of the operations of this corps during the recent movements of the army:
On the afternoon of Tuesday, April 28, five of my batteries (Seely's, Huntington's, Dimick's, Randolph's, and Lewis') were ordered to report to Brigadier-General Hunt, chief of artillery, and during the night were placed in position as follows: Seely on the river bank at the bridge-head, covering Sedgwick's crossing; Huntington on the crest to the right and rear of Franklin's crossing; Dimick, Randolph, and Lewis in reserve between the railroad and Lacy house.

The infantry and remaining artillery broke camp about 4 p.m., and, marching about 4 miles down the river, took position between Sedgwick's and Reynolds' crossings, and within supporting distance of either. The troops of all arms moved forward with the greatest alacrity and ardor. I reported to General Sedgwick about sunset.

On the morning of the 29th, in obedience to orders of Major-General Sedgwick, my command moved nearer the upper bridges, which had meanwhile been successfully laid by the engineers, where I occupied the ground previously held by the Sixth Corps, one division of which (Brook's) had crossed to the south bank, near the mouth of Deep Run, early in the morning.

On the morning of the 30th, in compliance with General Newton's wishes, sanctioned by Major-General Sedgwick, I placed my artillery in battery on the north bank of the river, to protect the bridges and repel any attack upon Brooks, who remained on the south side.

At 1 p.m. I received orders from the general-in-chief to march my command to the United States Ford, and report to him at or near Chancellorsville, concealing my movement from the enemy and moving expeditiously, so that the heads of my column should pass the bridges not later than 7 o'clock on the following morning, May 1.

Putting my command in three columns, the artillery following divisions, I marched on parallel lines through ravines and on roads masked from the enemy to Hamet's, that is to say, the intersection of the Warrenton pike with the United States Ford road. There we bivouacked, and at 5 a.m. marched to the ford, which Birney crossed at 7 a.m., Whipple and Berry following, well closed up.

Not observing any force besides the Engineer Battalion on the south side, I left one of Berry's brigades (Mott's) and a battery (Seely's) to cover the bridges and my trains, which were parked near the north bank, and pushed ahead with the rest of my column to the front, where I had the honor to report at 9 a.m. to the commanding general, at Chancellorsville. In compliance with orders then received, I massed my forces in the forest, near the junction of the roads leading to Ely's and the United States Fords.

About noon, my attention was directed by the general-in-chief to a demonstration of the enemy's cavalry on our right, in the direction of the United States Ford, and at the same time I was ordered to send a brigade and a battery to Dowdall's Tavern, on the Plank road. Graham's brigade, of Birney's division, and Turnbull's battery were at once moved to that position, with orders to picket well out and to connect


with Whipple, toward the United States Ford, who was directed to connect by outposts with Berry, who, in turn, reached the river. Graham soon reported that Major General Howard occupied the tavern as his headquarters; that General Howard picketed on our right and to the rear, and that, as he had no orders to move and needed no assistance, General Howard suggested there might be some mistake in Graham's order, and meanwhile directed him to halt near the tavern and wait further orders. Berry and Whipple established a line of outposts, with strong supports, from the Plank road to the United States Ford.

At 4 p.m. the general-in-chief directed me to bring forward my whole command, except Mott, who still protected the ford, and get rapidly into position parallel to the Plank road at Chancellorsville. Graham was recalled at once, Whipple's and Berry's outposts were withdrawn, and, with celerity and precision of movement never surpassed, Birney, with Ward's and Hayman's brigades, formed in two lines, and Berry's and Whipple's were massed in column of battalions in the open ground north and to the right of Chancellorsville, the near of the column covered by the woods. Graham had barely reported to me when I sent him, under a brisk and well-directed artillery fire, to support Major-General Slocum, who was apprehensive about his position at Fairview. Toward sunset, Birney, with Ward's and Hayman's brigades, moved up the Plank road near the junction of the left flank of the Eleventh Corps with the right of the Twelfth Corps, and within supporting distance. Finding the right of Major-General Slocum's (Twelfth) weak, Birney, with two brigades, bivouacked in the rear of Slocum's line, throwing out the Twentieth Indiana and Thirty-seventh New York to the front, where they replaced two of the regiments of Williams' division, of the Twelfth Corps. In order to gain some advantageous ground, a strong line of skirmishers was advanced, who quickly dislodged the enemy from the cleared fields and houses in front, giving us the high and commanding position had been holding. Berry's and Whipple's divisions bivouacked at Chancellorsville; Berry's artillery was held in reserve near the Junction of Ely's and the United States Fords roads.

During the night, with the approval of the general-in-chief, General Birney was ordered to occupy at daybreak a portion of the front line on the left of Major-General Howard (Eleventh Corps), extending from the Plank road southwesterly through the Wilderness and connecting with the right of Major-General Slocum (Twelfth Corps), thereby relieving portions of the troops of each of those corps and enabling them to strengthen materially their lines. Accompanying the general-in-chief at sunrise on Saturday in a tour of inspection along our lines on the right flank, I found General Birney, who had also brought up Graham's brigade and Clark's, Randolph's, and Turnbull's batteries, making his dispositions with admirable discernment and skill, holding the crest along Scott's Run, from the farm-house on the left toward Dowdall's Tavern. It is impossible to pass over without mention the irrepressible enthusiasm of the troops for Major-General Hooker, which was evinced in hearty and prolonged cheers as he rode along the lines of the Third, Eleventh, and Twelfth Corps.

On returning to general headquarters, I was directed to make a reconnaissance in front and to the left of Chancellorsville. Major-General Berry was requested to detail for this duty two reliable regiments, led by circumspect and intrepid commanders. The Eleventh Massachusetts, Colonel William Blaisdell commanding, moving out to the left, toward Tabernacle Church, and the Twenty-sixth Pennsylvania, Colonel B.C.

Tilgham commanding, in front, gallantly pressed back the enemy's pickets and skirmishers until he was discovered in force. A detachment of Berdan's Sharpshooters, from Whipple's division, accompanied each regiment. A number of prisoners and full reports of the enemy's dispositions were among the satisfactory results of this brilliant reconnaissance. Colonel Blaisdell was not withdrawn until night, when he received the emphatic commendation of Major-General Hancock, from whose front the advance was made.

My attention was now withdrawn from Chancellorsville, where Berry and Whipple remained in reserve, by several report in quick succession from General Birney, that a column of the enemy was moving along his front toward our right. This column I found on going to the spot to be within easy range of Clark's battery (about 1,600 yards), and Clark so effectually annoyed the enemy by his excellent practice that the infantry sought cover in the woods or some other road more to the south, while the artillery and trains hurried past in great confusion, vainly endeavoring to escape our well-directed and destructive fire.

This continuous column-infantry, artillery, trains, and ambulances-was ordered for three hours moving apparently in a southerly direction toward One Court-House, on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad, or Louisa Court-House, on the Virginia Central. The movement indicated a retreat on Gordonsville or an attack upon our right flank-perhaps both, for if the attack failed the retreat could be continued. The unbroken mass of forest on our right favored the concealment of the enemy's real design. I hastened to report these movements through staff officers to the general-in-chief, and communicated the substance of them in the same manner to Major-General Howard, on my right, and also to Major-General Slocum, inviting their co-operation in case the general-in-chief should authorize me to follow up the enemy and attack his columns.

At noon I received orders to advance cautiously toward the road followed by the enemy, and harass the movement as much as possible. Immediately ordering Birney to push forward over Scott's Run and gain the heights in the Wilderness, I brought up two battalions of sharpshooters, under Colonel Berdan, to be deployed as skirmishers and as flankers, so as to get all possible knowledge of the enemy's movement and of the approaches to his line of march. At the same time I communicated again with Major-Generals Slocum and Howard, and was assured of their prompt co-operation.

Two bridges having been rapidly thrown over Scott's Run, Birney's division, the Twentieth Indiana leading, pressed forward briskly, meeting considerable opposition from skirmishers thrown out by McLaws' division of the enemy's forces, which was found in position to cover the enemy's distance. Reaching the iron foundry, about a mile from his first position, Birney's advance was checked by a 12-pounder battery of the enemy, which, at short range from Welford's house, near the road, poured in a destructive fire. Livingston's battery was sent forward and put in position between the foundry and the front, and soon silenced the enemy's battery. This battery was afterward relieved by Randolph's, and effectually held this important point, upon which the success of the movement depended. Ascertaining from a careful examination of the position that it was practicable to gain the road and break the enemy's column, I so reported to the general-in-chief, adding that as I must expect to encounter a heavy force and a stubborn resistance, and bearing in mind his admonition to move cautiously, I should not advancePage387 CHAP.XXXVII.] THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

farther until the supports from the Eleventh and Twelfth Corps closed up on Birney's right and left.

The considerable interval on the left, between Birney's and Williams' division, of Slocum's corps, yet remaining unoccupied, and, suffering from a galling fire of musketry in that direction, I was compelled reluctantly to draw largely upon my reserves (Whipple) to enable me to connect on the left with Slocum. Barlow's brigade (of the Eleventh Corps) having got into position on the right, I was again in readiness for a farther advance, which was gallantly maintained by the sharpshooters, supported by the Twentieth Indiana and Fifth Michigan.

From this advance, 300 prisoners were soon reported to me, besides nearly 100 previously captured at the foundry by the sharpshooters. Hayman's brigade soon gained the road, supported by Graham and Ward, the latter keeping up communication on the right and rear, at the foundry. The road gained, Randolph's battery was advanced, and poured a destructive fire on the retreating column of the enemy. The movement was successfully completed.

Brigadier-General Pleasonton, with three regiments of cavalry (the Sixth New York, and Eighth and Seventeenth Pennsylvania) and Martin's battery of horse artillery, had already reported to me, and was moving over the hill through the woods toward the foundry, but not deeming it quite time for the effective employment of cavalry in the attack, in compliance with my suggestion, General Pleasonton returned to the opening near Scott's Run, formed his command, and waited until the way could be cleared for his operations.

Returning to the front, I found every indication that looked to a complete success as soon as my advance could be supported. The resistance of McLaw's division had almost ceased, and although our scouts reported a considerable force on the right and in front, it was evident that in few minutes five or six regiments would be cut off and fall into our hands. Regarding the moment opportune for the advance of General Pleasonton, with his cavalry and horse battery, I was about to dispatch a staff officer to bring him forward when it was reported to me that the Eleventh Corps had yield the right flank of the army to the enemy, who was advancing rapidly, and, indeed, was already in my rear. I confess I did not credit this statement until an aide-de-camp of General Warren, of General Hooker's staff, confirmed the report, and asked for a regiment of cavalry to check the movement. The Eighth Pennsylvania Cavalry was immediately sent by General Pleasonton, and brilliantly was the service performed, although with fearful loss. I had only time to dispatch staff officers to recall Birney and Whipple, when the enemy's scouts and some dragoons disclosed themselves as I rode toward the bridge across Scott's Run for the purpose of making disposition to meet and arrest this disaster. Meeting General Pleasonton, we hastened to make the best available disposition to attack Jackson's columns on their right flank.

I confided to Pleasonton the direction of the artillery-three batteries of my reserve-Clark's, Lewis', and Turnbull's, and his own horse battery. The only supports at hand comprised two small regiments of cavalry (Sixth New York and Seventeenth Pennsylvania) and one regiment of infantry (One hundred and tenth Pennsylvania, of Whipple's division). Time was everything. The fugitives of the Eleventh Corps swarmed from the woods and swept frantically over the cleared fields, in which my artillery was parked. The exulting enemy at their heels mingled yells with their volleys, and in the confusion which followed it seemed as if cannon and caissons, dragoons, cannoneers, and infantry

Page388 N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. [CHAP.XXXVII.could never be disentangled from the mass in which they were suddenly thrown. Fortunately there was only one obvious outlet for these panic-struck hordes after rushing between and over our guns, and this was through a ravine crossed in two or three places by the headwaters of Scott's Run. This was soon made impassable by the reckless crowd choking up the way. A few minutes was enough to restore comparative order and get our artillery in position. The enemy showing himself on the plain, Pleasonton met the shock at short range with the well-directed fire of twenty-two pieces, double-shotted with canister. The rebels pressed up the Plank road rapidly, and, as General Pleasonton justly observes in his report, herewith transmitted-

They advanced in silence, and with that skill and adroitness they often display to gain their object. The only color visible was an American flag with the center battalion. To clear up this doubt my aide-de-camp, Lieutenant Thomson, First New York Cavalry, rode to within 100 yards of them, when they called out to him, "We are friends; come on!" and he was induced to go 50 yards closer, when the whole line, in a most dastardly manner, opened on him with musketry, dropped the American color, and displayed 8 or 10 rebel battle-flags.

Lieutenant Thomson escaped unhurt, and our batteries opened on the advancing columns with crushing power. The heads of the columns were swept away to the woods, from which they opened a furious but ineffectual fire of musketry. Twice they attempted a flank movement, but the first was checked by our guns, and the second and most formidable was baffled by the advance of Whipple and Birney, who were coming up rapidly, but in perfect order, and forming in lines of brigades in rear of the artillery, and on the flanks. My position was now secure in the adequate infantry support which had arrived; the loud cheers of our men as twilight closed the combat vainly challenged the enemy to renew the encounter.

While these movements were in progress on the flank, the First and Second Brigades of the Second Division (Berry's), which had been held in reserve at Chancellorsville, were ordered by the general-in-chief to take a position perpendicular to the Plank road and check the enemy's advance.

Captain Poland, General Berry's chief of staff, led the Excelsior Brigade into the woods to the right of the road, except the Fourth Excelsior, Major Burns commanding, which was placed on the edge of the timber to the left.

The First Massachusetts, Colonel McLaughlen, was detached from the First (Carr's) Brigade and posted on the left of the Second (Excelsior) Brigade, prolonging the line to the Plank road.

The remaining regiments of Carr's brigade (First) formed a second line 150 paces of the rear.

These dispositions were made without the steadiness of these veteran troops being in the least disturbed by the torrents of fugitives breaking through their intervals. The remaining of the first line, covered by their skirmishers, immediately threw up a strong breastwork of logs and abatis.

Prisoners captured (among them an aide of General Stuart's, who had come forward with a party to remove a caisson left by the Eleventh Corps) disclosed to us the enemy's lines of battle, about 300 yards in front, in the woods.

Osborn, Berry's chief of artillery, during these dispositions of the infantry, placed Dimick's and Winslow's batteries on the crest of the hill, perpendicular to the road and 300 or 400 yards in rear of the line of battle. A section of Dimick's was thrown forward on the Plank road, near the infantry.Page389 CHAP.XXXVII.] THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

These admirable dispositions, promptly made, the splendid fire of the artillery, and the imposing attitude of an iron wall of infantry co-operated with our flank attack to check the enemy's advance, which was effectually accomplished before dark.

General Berry, having established his front line, dispatched and aide and patrols to the right of our position, in search of the troops who were supposed to protect that flank or connect with it. These efforts were futile. Report was made to the commanding general of the fact, and information obtained that the Second Corps would connect with our right. At 9 p.m. General Hays, of the Second Corps, reported to General Berry with a brigade, which was placed obliquely in rear of the second line (Carr's brigade) and facing toward the left.

After dark, the enemy's line could only be defined by the flash of his musketry, from which a stream of fire occasionally almost enveloped us. As often as these attacks were renewed, generally with fresh troops, and aided by his artillery, they were repulsed by our guns, now directed by Randolph on the flank and by Osborn in front. Ascertaining the enterprise of cutting us off from the army to be hopeless, the enemy sullenly withdrew to the line of rifle pits and breastworks formerly held by the Eleventh Corps. Several of our guns and caissons were immediately recovered from the woods the enemy had occupied, and, again to quote the felicitous observations of General Pleasonton-

Such was the flight at the head of Scott's Run-artillery against infantry at 300 yards; the infantry in the forest, the artillery in the clearing. War presents many anomalies, but few so strange in its results as this.

I now hastened to open communication with General Slocum on my right and with headquarters at Chancellorsville-the last communication which I had received from the general-in-chief having been the order to assail the enemy on his right flank and check his advance, which was conveyed to me about 5 p.m., adding that I must rely upon the force I had, as Berry's division, of my corps, could not be spared from the front. To open communication, I sent Lieutenant Colonel Hart, assistant adjutant-general, and a small mounted escort, detailed by General Pleasonton, first taking the precaution to be sure that no orders, communications, or memorandum of the countering should compromise us, if capture resulted in the search of his person. Colonel Hart, taking the route through the ravine and by Fairview, performed this duty with his usual address and zeal, and brought me orders to hold my position.

Colonel Hart was instructed to report to the general-in-chief that a portion of Whipple's ammunition (mule) train, some of the caissons of his batteries, and two or three of his cannon were in the woods occupied by the enemy between my line of battle and the road, and that to recover these, as well as the line of the Plank road, I would, with his sanction, make a night attack, if supported by Williams' division, of Slocum's corps, and by Berry's division, of this corps, now forming a connected line. About 11 o'clock I received, through Colonel Hart, permission to make this advance, and immediately confiding the dispositions on the flank to General Birney, and in front to Major-General Berry, directed the attack to be made on the flank in two lines of battle (with the bayonet), supported by heavy columns.

Colonel Hart was sent to communicate with Major-General Berry and General Williams, who intervened between Birney's right and Berry's left, Berry's lines crossing the Plank road in the woods in front of Fairview. Colonel Hart reported to me that Berry and Williams were ready, at midnight I ordered Birney to advance.Page390 N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. [CHAP.XXXVII.

It is difficult to do justice to the brilliant execution of this movement by Birney and his splendid command. Ward's brigade formed the first line; Hayman's second, about 100 yards in the rear, pieces all uncapped, and strict orders not to fire a musket until the Plank road and earthworks were reached, the movement to be by the right of companies. On the left a wide road led through the woods perpendicular to the Plank road, on which the Fortieth New York, Seventeenth Maine, and Sixty-third Pennsylvania Volunteers were pushed forward by column of companies at full distance.

The night was very clear and still; the moon, nearly full, threw enough light in the woods to facilitate the advance, and against a terrific fire of musketry and artillery, some twenty pieces of which the enemy had massed in the opening (Dowdall's), where General Howard's headquarters had been established, the advance was successfully executed, the line of the Plank road gained, and our breastworks reoccupied.

I commend to the particular notice of the general-in-chief the high praise bestowed by General Birney upon Colonel Thomas W. Egan, Fortieth New York, for the energy and dash which he threw into this attack. All our guns and caissons and a portion of Whipple's mule train were recovered, besides two pieces of the enemy's artillery and three caissons captured.

Thrown into hopeless confusion upon his right flank, the enemy advanced upon the front of the Second Division (Berry's) in connected lines on the right and left of the road, but was repulsed in less than thirty minutes by the combined and effective fire of infantry and Dimick's and Osborn's batteries, excellently posted on and near the road.

At about 2 a.m. the Third (Mott's) Brigade arrived from the ford, from whence it was ordered before dark, and was placed in reserve in two lines to the left of the Plank road, in the rear of the right of General Williams' division and in front of the division artillery, the right of each line resting on the road.

At daylight on Sunday morning, I received orders from the general-in-chief in person to withdraw from my position on the flank, and march my command by the most practicable route to Fairview, and there occupy the new line of intrenchments along the skirt of the woods perpendicular to and on either side of the Plank road, my artillery to occupy the field-works on the crest of the hill, in the rear of the lines of battle. Major-General Berry I found already in position in the front line, with the Second Division, connecting on his left with Williams' division (Twelfth Corps). An examination of his dispositions left me nothing to desire. General Whipple commenced the movement from the Wilderness by the left flank, preceded by the artillery of his own and Birney's divisions, except Huntington's battery, which was well posted on the right flank, to cover the withdrawal of the columns. Birney followed in good order. When the rear of his column (Graham's brigade) had descended the ravine, the enemy assailed Graham fiercely, and charged Huntington's battery, but were handsomely repulsed. Directing a battery to open fire from the crest of a hill to the left of the Fairview house, and a brigade to be formed in column of regiments within supporting distance of Graham, he was withdrawn in good order, although not without considerable loss. Huntington's battery, of Whipple's division, swept with a most destructive fire the plain on which the rebels deployed for their attack on Graham. In withdrawing over the branches of Scott's Run, this battery lost some of its horses and material.

Along the heights in front of Fairview, commencing near the Plank


road on the right, were Dimick's and Osborn's batteries; near the dwelling, Randolph's and Clark's were posted; on the extreme left of the crest, Seeley, Lewis, Livingston, and Puttkammer in reserve. Huntington was sent to the ford. The Third (Mott's) Brigade, Second Division, after the retreat of the Third Maryland Regiment, moved forward to the breastwork, by command of General Mott, and drove the enemy back upon himself with incalculable slaughter. The Fifth New Jersey advanced into the woods beyond the line of breastworks, capturing many prisoners and colors. The Seventh New Jersey on the left view with the Fifth in repelling the rebel masses. Graham's brigade (the One hundred and fourteenth, Fifty-seventh, Sixty-third, Sixty-eighth, One hundred and fifth, and One hundred and forty-first Pennsylvania Infantry) was almost immediately sent to the front to relieve one of General Slocum's brigades, which was reported to me to be without ammunition. The First Brigade (Colonel Franklin commanding), of Whipple's division, in two lines (the One hundred and twenty-fourth and Eighty-sixth New York and One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania), supported Berry, on the right of the Plank road, most gallantly. The battery on the left of the road and in rear of the line having been withdrawn, these regiments relieved the front line on the left of the road, and by a brilliant charge drove back the enemy, who were coming down the road and over our breastworks. It was in this charge that the intrepid Lieutenant-Colonel Chapin and Major Higgins were wounded, the former mortally. The Second Brigade, Colonel Bowman commanding (the Twelfth New Hampshire, Colonel Potter; One hundred and tenth Pennsylvania, Lieutenant-Colonel Crowther commanding, and Eighty-fourth Pennsylvania,Lieutenant-Colonel Opp commanding), formed the third line in front and to the left of the batteries at Fairview. These troops behaved with he utmost gallantry, and were boldly led, maintaining their ground to the lest under the most adverse circumstances.Their loss was necessarily severe. Besides Lieutenant-Colonel Crowther, who was killed, Colonel Potter, Lieutenant-Colonel Maish, and Major Savage, of the Twelfth New Hampshire, and Major Jones, One hundred and tenth Pennsylvania, were all dangerously wounded.

The sharpshooters, under Colonel Berdan, supported the First Brigade on the right, throwing out a strong line of skirmishers to the front in the woods. These splendid light troops rendered the most effective service. Major Hastings was severely wounded while upon this duty with his battalion.

The vigor and tenacity of the enemy's attack seemed to concentrate more and more upon my lines near the Plank road and on my left flank. As fast as their lines were broken by the terrible fire of artillery and musketry, fresh columns were deployed. My last reserve (Ward's brigade, of Birney's division) had been sent to support Berry, on the right of the Plank road, but that heroic commander had fallen in the thickest of the fight, while Ward was on his way, who failed to get into position before the enemy had turned Berry's left flank, which was held by the Third Maryland, of the Twelfth Corps.

Thirty cannon, in a commanding position and admirably served, inflicted terrible blows upon the enemy. Often repulsed by the concentration of this fire, and by repeated charges of infantry, his unexhausted reserves enabled him to press forward rather in crowds than in any regular formation.

My last round of ammunition having been expended, except canister, which could not be used on account of the position of our own troops,

Page392 N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. [CHAP.XXXVII.

the artillery retired toward Chancellorsville and took a new position. The infantry, except that portion of the Second Division which General Revere without authority led to the rear, was then reformed under my own supervision, and while being supplied with ammunition took upon a second position on the plain in the rear of Fairview, the front line occupying the artillery breastworks.

It was here that the First Brigade (Franklin's), of the Third Division, vied with the Third Brigade (Mott's), Second Division, in its repeated assaults upon the enemy. Charge after charge was made by this gallant brigade, under Colonel Sewell, Fifth New Jersey, upon whom the command devolved (after the loss of General Mott and Colonel Park, Second New York Volunteers, wounded), before it was withdrawn, terribly reduced and mutilated, from the post assigned it. Its stern resistance to the impulsive assaults of the enemy, and the brilliant charges made in return, were worthy of the "Old Guard." No soldier could refuse a tribute of admiration in remembrance of the last charge made. A small body, for a regiment, drove the enemy out of the rifle-pits near Fairview before withdrawing, and returned with 40 men, whose sole reliance in this charge was in the bayonet, every cartridge having been expended moments before.

Finally, retiring to Chancellorsville, I reformed in three lines on the right of Major-General Hancock, of Couch's corps; Lewis' battery, four pieces of Seeley's, and a section of Randolph's, under Lieutenant Bucklyn, took position about half-way between Chancellorsville and Fairview, and, although exposed to a terrible fire, were effectively served until not a round of ammunition was left. The severe loss in men and horses now rendered the withdrawal of my batteries imperative-Seeley, as he fell back, bringing with him all the harness from 30 or 40 of his dead and wounded horses, leaving no trophy of his battery on the field except the memorable loss it had inflicted on the enemy.

Graham's (Pennsylvania) brigade had gallantly held the left for two hours, driving the enemy with the bayonet out of some barricades he had taken early in the action. The right giving way toward the Plank road, General Birney, in person, led a portion of Hayman's brigade to the charge, driving the enemy back in confusion, capturing several hundred prisoners, and relieving Graham from a flank movement of the enemy, which exposed him to great peril, when he withdrew in good order.

After the fall of the lamented Berry, some confusion occurred in the withdrawal of the Second Division, owing to the assumption of command by Brigadier-General Revere, who, heedless of their murmurs, shamefully led to the rear the whole of the Second Brigade and portions of two others, thus subjecting these proud soldiers for the first time to the humiliation of being marched to the rear while their comrades were under fire. General Revere was promptly recalled with his troops, and at once relieved of command.

Although the stubborn resistance made by the Second Division to the heavy column of the enemy could not, unsupported, have been protracted much longer for the want of ammunition, there is no doubt that part of my line was needlessly exposed by the premature and hasty retirement of the Third Maryland Regiment, which had at daybreak relieved the Fourth Excelsior, on the left of the Plank road. The enemy seized the advantage instantly, and, penetrating my line in the center, near the road, exposed the wings to a fearful enfilading fire. It Ward had not unfortunately failed to get into position, this might have been averted for some time, at least. The claim of Revere to command, added


to the hesitation of Colonel McAllister, of the Eleventh New Jersey, to recognize the orders of Captain Poland, chief of staff, lost us precious moments of time, and before I could reach that part of the field from the left, where I was then occupied, the position had been had been yielded by the infantry, the artillery having a few minutes before exhausted its ammunition and retired.

The front line near the Plank road nearly in the morning comprised, beginning on the left of the road, the Third Maryland (Twelfth Corps), First Massachusetts, Fifth Excelsior, One hundred and twentieth New York, the Second, First, and Third Excelsior, and Twenty-sixth Pennsylvania (Second Division, Third Corps). This line gallantly resisted the assaults of the enemy for more than an hour, when its left was turned, and Colonel Stevens, of the Second Brigade, in the absence of General Revere, changed front to repel the advance of the enemy on the flank. Before the movement was completed, this brilliant officer fell, mortally wounded. Captain [H.J.] Bliss and several men who approached to remove him from the field were wounded. Then followed a fierce hand-to-hand struggle for the colors of the regiment (the Third Excelsior); they were seized by the enemy, but every rebel who touched them was either shot or bayoneted, and the brave Stevens saw his colors proudly borne to the next position assigned to the regiment.

With the exception of his artillery, which sustained its fire and advanced toward Fairview, there was nothing like ardor-indeed, there was every indication of exhaustion-in the advance of the enemy after occupying our lines of Fairview.

I took at least 400 prisoners, including many officers, as I retired slowly upon Chancellorsville. There was no serious demonstration by the enemy's infantry on my artillery or supports after it had taken a second position near the brick mansion, which had been occupied as the headquarters of the general-in-chief until it was set on fire by the enemy's shells. It would not have been difficult to regain the lost ground with the bayonet, as I proposed to do, but the attempt was not deemed expedient (for the want of supports to hold it) by the senior officer present upon that part of the field, upon whom the direction of operations in front had devolved in the temporary absence of the general-in-chief.

In conformity with orders, I marched my command in several columns, by the flanks, to the junction of Ely's and the United States Fords roads, taking position as supports to General Meade. These dispositions were afterward changed by order of the general-in-chief, by whose direction I moved to the front of the new lines near the white house, connecting with General Meade on the right and General Couch on the left. Here we intrenched, and, after throwing forward strong lines of supports for the artillery in my front (thirty cannon in position, under the direction of Captain Randolph, my chief of artillery), I massed my reserves in the woods in columns by divisions, opening debouches in all directions. These works were begun under an annoying fire of the enemy's sharpshooters, who were soon handsomely driven by Berdan, to whom the outposts were confided, but not until the brave and accomplished Brigadier General A.W. Whipple, commanding Third Division, had fallen, mortally wounded, while directing in person the construction of field-works in his front.

These dispositions continued until Wednesday morning, a deluging rain-storm intervening, which caused a great and sudden rise in the Rappahannock and its tributaries, endangering our bridges and making the roads impracticable for trains. The supply of rations had become so reduced as to render an advance impossible without our trains.

Page394 N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. [CHAP.XXXVII.

During Tuesday afternoon and night, my pioneers, under the energetic direction of Captain Briscoe, aide-de-camp, to General Birney, made a road 2 rods wide, through 3 miles of forest, to the United States Ford.

At daylight I was ordered to follow the artillery simultaneously with the Fifth and First Corps, these to be followed by the Second Corps as fast as the covering column closed in on its left, and this corps in turn to be followed by the Eleventh and Twelfth Corps in the same order. This movement was thrown into some confusion and its success imperiled by the premature withdrawal of the pickets of the Fifth Corps and the premature movement of the Second and Eleventh Corps, the former taking my bridge, on the right, and crossing the river in advance of my First Division.

My command having been withdrawn in good order, Colonel McLaughlen, First Massachusetts Infantry, general officer of outposts, reported to me near the ford with the outpost detail, and my column, after passing without confusion or loss to the north side of the Rappahannock, moved to the old camps at Boscobel and Bellair, which they reached during the afternoon of the 6th.

Herewith I have the honor to submit nominal and tabular returns of casualties, together with the reports of division and brigade commanders and the chief of artillery. In none of the sanguinary combats in which the troops of this corps have been engaged have they had better opportunities than on Saturday and Sunday, May 2 and 3, to inflict great injury upon the enemy and to render signal service to this army and the cause. Soldiers and commanders performed their duties with ardor, alacrity, and devotion. As long as the history of this was shall be read, conspicuous upon its pages will be the record of the achievements and the sacrifices of the Third Army Corps in the battles of the Wilderness and of Fairview. The most difficult and painful of duties remains to be performed-an appropriate tribute to the fallen and the just commendation of those most distinguished for good conduct. Such losses as those of Berry, Stevens, McKnight, Lancaster, Crowther, and Dimick, are irreparable. It is a consolation to know that they and their noble associates among the dead did not fall unrevenged, for in the loss of Jackson and Hill, and the flower of the rebel army on Saturday and Sunday, the enemy learned to respect the prowess of the Third Army Corps.

I shall fail in giving adequate expression tot he obligations I feel toward division, brigade, regimental, and battery commanders. The gallantry of Whipple was gracefully acknowledged by his promotion before his wound proved to be mortal. The dashing leadership of Birney had already received a like recognition. The chivalrous Berry proved but too soon how well he had deserved the highest rank in our service, and I trust that Pleasonton's brilliant conduct on Saturday-calm in the midst of tumult, and full of resources when others yielded to the pervading dismay-may be the occasion of his deserved advancement. General Carr, commanding Second Division, temporarily; General Graham, commanding, Third Division, temporarily; General Mott, of the New Jersey brigade (who was seriously wounded); Colonel Sewell, who succeeded to the command; Colonels Bowman and Berdan, commanding brigades in the Third Division; Colonel Potter, Twelfth New Hampshire, (dangerously wounded); Colonel Blaisdell, Eleventh Massachusetts; Colonel Egan, Fortieth New York; Colonel Elis, One hundred and Twenty-fourth New York, and Colonel Tilghman, Twenty-sixth Pennsylvania (dangerously wounded), deserve especial mention for the gallant and skillful handling of their several commands.


My artillery was served with such uniform ability and power that to discriminate among the battery commanders is not a little embarrassing. I must refer you on this subject to the report of Captain Randolph, than whom it would be difficult to name a more accomplished, judicious, and energetic chief of artillery. Osborn and Clark, chiefs of the First and Second Divisions, sustained their reputations as cool and reliable officers. Lewis established a high name for his battery; Seeley was pre-eminent, as usual; Dimick won the applause of commanders and comrades by his heroic conduct, and there is nothing in war more splendid than the exploit of Lieutenant Sanderson, of Battery H, First U.S. Artillery, who advanced with a limber through a storm of musketry, disdaining death, and withdrew the last gun of his battery from the grasp of the enemy.

In compliance with orders, I shall forward at an early day a list of recommendations for brevets and promotions.

The ambulance corps, under the direction of Lieutenant J.R. Moore, deserves the very highest praise. More than 2,000 of my wounded were in the hospitals at Potomac Creek, 15 miles from the front, on Tuesday, May 5. (Lieutenant Webster joined in season to take charge of the removal of the wounded under the flag of truce).

The chief commissary of subsistence, Lieutenant-Colonel Woods, discharged all his duties satisfactorily. Captain [Harrison D.F.] Young, chief ordnance officer, always prompt and foremost, was reluctantly compelled by indisposition to remain with his trains in the rear.

To Lieutenant-Colonel Hayden, inspector-general; Captain Randolph, chief of artillery; Lieutenant-Colonel [Orson H.] Hart, assistant adjutant-general; Major Tremain, aide-de-camp; Captain Fry, aide-de-camp (seriously wounded); Captains Briscoe and Fassitt; of General Birney's staff; Lieutenant W.C. Banks, deputy provost-marshal; Lieutenant Moore, ambulance officer and volunteer aide-de-camp; Lieutenant [Jeannotte] Macduff, aide-de-camp, and Mr. T.M. Cook, a civilian who volunteered his services early on Saturday, I am under the greatest obligations for the gallantry, intelligence, and zeal with which their laborious and important duties were performed.

Captain George E. Randolph, chief of artillery; Major H.E. Tremain, aide-de-camp; Lieutenant Colonel Julius Hayden, inspector-general (major Tenth U.S. Infantry), and Captain T.W.G. Fry, commissary of subsistence and aide-de-camp, are earnestly recommended for brevest.

The fall of Berry and Whipple deprived them of the opportunity of doing justice to the conspicuous merit and gallantry of their respective staffs. I am sure that I only give expression to the feelings of these commanders while they lived when I commend to the notice of the general-in-chief the distinguished conduct of Captain [John S.] Poland, inspector-general and chief of staff of the Second Division, and of Captain Le Grand Benedict, assistant adjutant-general, of the Second Division; also of Captain [Henry R.] Dalton and the other members of General Whipple's accomplished staff. I shall have the honor again to solicit attention to their claims when forwarding in detail my list of recommendations for promotions and brevets.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major-General, Commanding.Brigadier General S. WILLIAMS,
Asst.Adjt.General , Army of the Potomac.Page396 N.VA., W.VA., MD., AND PA. [CHAP.XXXVII.HEADQUARTERS THIRD ARMY CORPS, May 25,1863.I have the honor to forward the following official tabular report of the casualties
which occurred in this corps during the recent operations: Killed. Wounded.
Command. Officers Men Officers Men
Corps staff -- -- 1 ----
First Division 15 82 58 787
Second Division 17 138 90 941
Third Division 11 98 42 640
Total* 43 318 191 2,368
Aggregate -- -- -- ----

Missing. Total.

Command. Officers Men Officers Men
Corps staff -- --- --- ----
First Division 15 576 88 1,445
Second Division 4 234 111 1,313
Third Division 7 283 60 1,021
Total* 26 1,093 260 3,779
Aggregate -- --- --- 4,039

Major-General, Commanding.No.161. Report of Colonel Emlen Franklin, One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Infantry,
commanding First Brigade.HDQRS. FIRST Brigadier , THIRD DIV., THIRD ARMY CORPS, May 8, 1863.

CAPTAIN: In obedience to orders received from division headquarters, requiring a report of the part taken by this brigade in the late engagements on the Rappahannock and in the vicinity of Chancellorsville, Va., I have the honor to report that this brigade crossed the Rappahannock on the pontoon bridge at the United States ford, with the rest of the division, on the morning of May 1, but took no part in the engagements of that day, except being drawn up in position in reserve during the reconnaissance in force with which the enemy felt our lines in the afternoon and evening.

About noon of May 2, we marched, in conjunction with the rest of the division, to the front, about a mile along the Plank road, and then turned to the left, for the purpose, as I understood, of making a demonstration on the flank of a column of the enemy moving toward the right of our line. After advancing about 2 miles, we met the enemy in force immediately after debouching from a dense and tangled thicket, and formed line of battle, connecting with the Second Brigade of our division on the right and Williams' brigade on the left. After exchanging a few rounds with the enemy at this place, we were ordered in large force in our rear. We fell back upon the same line upon which we had advanced for about half a mile to a hill, where we found a battery engaged with the enemy, who occupied the road upon which we had advanced. After remaining in support of this battery for some time, we were placed in position to the left and front about 200 yards, holding a line of woods which skirted the open field. We maintained this


position during the night of the 2nd against the enemy, who occupied the woods in some force and made repeated attacks on our line, which were handsomely repelled by close volleys of musketry. About a dozen prisoners were taken.

At daylight on the morning of the 3rd, we commenced a movement to the right, in conjunction with the other advanced forces, to regain the general lines of the army. After marching about a mile, we were thrown into position; first on the left, and afterward on right of the Plank road, and the whole brigade was soon hotly engaged with the advancing columns of the enemy. this was a very severe encounter of some hours' duration, during which the enemy was not only checked in his advance, but was driven back by repeated charges of our troops, who almost universally, both officers and men, behaved with great gallantry. Over 100 prisoners were here taken. We finally withdrew, under orders, without confusion and in good order, within the general lines, and were not again actively engaged.

During all the shifting scenes of these two days' battles, the regiments were handled by their commanding offices with the proper military precision, and every one seemed determined to do his best against teh foe. The regiments were in many cases so individualized in their encounters that justice cannot be done to them in a general report without accompanying it with the reports of the regimental commanders, copies of which I accordingly append.

I beg leave to give my testimony to the zeal and thorough good conduct of my staff officers, Captain Benjamin M. Piatt and Lieuts. John C. Long and Henry P. Ramsdell.
Respectfully submitted.EMLEN FRANKLIN,
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.Captain HENRY R. DALTON,
Asst. Adjt. General , Third Division, Third Army Corps.No.164. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Edward McGovern, One hundred and twenty-second
Pennsylvania Infantry.HDQRS. 122nd PENNSYLVANIA VOLUNTEERS, May 8, 1863.

CAPTAIN: In obedience to circular from brigade headquarters, dated May 7, 1863, calling for a report from commanding officers of regiments of the part their commands took in the late engagements on the Rappahannock and in the vicinity of Chancellorville, Va., I have the honor to report:
On May 2, the One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers marched, in its proper place in the First Brigade, on the Plank road about 1 mile west of Chancellorsville, and filed to the left, going in the direction of a battery, and forwarded obliquely to the right, passing a dense woods on my front in close column by company, when I deployed column on emerging from the woods, and again advanced in line of battle across a swamp to within 250 yards of the lines of the enemy. At this point the fire of the enemy opened, but as I was preceded by a line of skirmishers, I was prevented from delivering an effective reply.

Our lines halted at this point, and I ordered my men to avoid that part of the enemy's fire which was delivered at our skirmishers. Our lines were not advanced from this point. I found it impossible wholly to restrain the fire of my men, as the fire opened on our left and rear, through our skirmishers had not yet retired. In a few moments I was ordered to about face, to repel the enemy, who had suddenly appeared upon our rear, and I hastened to being my men to support the battery upon the hill.

When I arrived at the hill, General Sickles rode up and said that he wished the regiment in line in two minutes; everything depended on it. In a moment the regiment was in line, ready to meet the enemy. He did not advance, however, and I was ordered to take position about 200 yards in advance of the battery, at the edge of the woods, and in no case to yield the place to the enemy. I advanced to the woods and took position, throwing out skirmishers. About 11 p. m. the enemy


*But see revised statement, p.179. ---------------PAGE499 CHAP.XXXVII.] THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

advanced and opened fire. My skirmishers fell back, ad directed, and immediately I opened fire, delivering a sweeping and most effective volley into the woods, repelling the enemy and completely silencing his fire. Shortly afterward I was relieved by the One hundred and twenty-fourth New York Volunteers.

On Sunday morning, May 3, at 4 o'clock, I was ordered to move my regiment to the right about 1 mile, across the Plank road, and was put in position to meet the advancing columns of the enemy, and immediately became engaged. Our advance was slow but steady until 11 o'clock, when the left wing had reached and repulsed a line of the enemy, which threatened our flank, and, following its success, rejoined the left at the breastworks.

During the progress of the morning's engagement, my men did no at any time falter or yield an inch of ground to the enemy. I would state that at the beginning of the engagement I labored under the misapprehension of believing that my line was preceded by other lines of our own troops. I was led to believe so by orders I had received. The density of the woods prevented me from examining the ground before me. While I was still under that belief, the enemy appeared on my third, overlapping my line and making a change of front necessary. As our lines were close together and the fire severe, I deemed it prudent to change front upon the right-center company, throwing back my right and advancing my left. The movement was only partially successful, owing to the difficulty of making orders heard. My left moved straight forward over the breastworks, whole the right, changing front, delivered a well-directed fire, which put the enemy to precipitate flight. In the temporary separation, the left wing was under the command of Major Stevens. When orders to that effect were received, the regiment retired in a body on good order, having been actually engaged with the enemy for six hours.

The movements above detailed were made in connection with the movements of the other regiments of the brigade. The regiment was not again actively engaged.

I find it difficult to return the exact number of prisoners taken, as they were rapidly sent to the rear during the engagement as soon as taken. The whole number taken during Saturday and Sunday was not less than 150.

Our loss is as follows:

Officers and men Killed.Wounded.Missing.Total.
Officers --- 6 --- 6
Enlisted men 11 70 16 97
Total* 11 76 16 103

I do but justice to officers and men when I say they behaved
themselves with great gallantry.


EDW. McGOVERN, Lieutenant-Colone
l, Commanding 122nd Pennsylvania Volunteers.Captain PIATT, Assistant Adjutant-General.Organization of the Army of the Potomac, Major General Joseph Hooker,
U. S. Army, commanding, May 31, 1863.

* * *

The One hundred and twenty-second Pennsylvania sent home for muster-out.

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