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ome four hundred of the Confederate forces were lodged. On reaching the creek it was found that the Confederates had destroyed the bridge, but the whole Federal column was thrown on the bank of the creek. At that moment a masked battery from the opposite side of the bridge opened its fire with deadly effect on the Federal troops. Two pieces of artillery were then directed against the battery, but without doing it any perceptible damage. In the engagement Lieut. Greble and Major Winthrop, of the Federal forces, were killed, and about fifty or one hundred of the troops were killed and two hundred wounded. The battle began about four o'clock in the morning, and continued for three hours, when the Federal troops were driven back. Great excitement exists at Fortress Monroe, and Gen. Pierce is censured for having exposed his men to the destroying fire of the Confederates for such a length of time. The troops returned to Fortress Monroe, and it was thought anoth
course of half an hour a retreat was sounded, and executed in good order. The regiment moved well, and the men, it is acknowledged on all sides, acted with a spirit of determinedness.--The most melancholy feature of the action was the killing of Lieutenant Greble. It was almost impossible to tell the number of killed and wounded on the side of the Federal troops, but I was told by General Butler that his estimate was about thirty killed and one hundred wounded. It was feared that Major Winthrop, aid to Gen. Butler, had been killed, as he could not be found. When the news of the action reached the Fortress, the utmost sadness prevailed, and there was a mournful aspect visible throughout. The first wounded man that reached the Fortress was private James Garbett; he came in an ambulance, which was very carefully driven. Soon as Gen. Butler heard of the affair, which was about 7 o'clock, he mounted his horse and rode at the top of speed to Newport News Point, for the purpose of
The Daily Dispatch: June 17, 1861., [Electronic resource], A Later account, direct from the Fortress — interesting details. (search)
three of their men, is a subject of universal ridicule. Butler condemned Pierce as the cause of their defeat, and Pierce attempts to throw the odium upon Major Winthrop, who, he charges, gave the order which exposed the troops to the fatal fire of the Confederates--while all, except Butler himself, think he should have led the expedition. The fate of Major Winthrop is yet a matter of doubt. He was at first supposed to have been killed, as he was missing when the repulsed. Federal troops made an enquiry into the extent of their loss, upon arriving at Hampton, after a rapid retreat of over eight miles. However, as no one, so far as can be ascer firing ceased on both sides, our artillery ammunition having been exhausted. The loss on our side is about 75 killed and wounded. Lieut. Greble was killed. Major Winthrop, aid to Gen. Butler, is also supposed to be dead. Upon our troops retiring, the enemy burned their works, apparently intending to fall back upon Yorktown.
anna stated that twenty-five Zouaves, besides those known to have been killed and wounded, were still missing. Two who had separated themselves from the regiment in the retreat, came into the Fortress on Tuesday afternoon, but could give no account of their missing comrades. A good deal of depression is said to be exhibited among the Federal troops because of the defeat, but they do not lack the courage to renew the contest as soon as they receive the word of command to march. Major Winthrop, one of the aids to General Pierce, who was reported missing, is said to have reached Newport News-point in safety. He gave the order to charge on the battery, when the fearful havoc of his troops took place. [Correspondence of the Baltimore Sun.] Old Point Comfort, June 11. The first battle between the contending forces of the United States and the Confederate States has taken place, resulting in the defeat of the former. At midnight on Sunday about nineteen hundred me