six times our number we could not have prevented their advance.
But General Butler greatly exaggerated our force, and I have always believed that his examination of Captain Koontz had something to do with his false impression.
As it was, these two regiments held his army at bay (or at ocean, perhaps I should say) the entire day, which was Christmas, 1864. By pushing our line close to his we escaped much injury from the ships' guns, their shells passing over our heads.
We had the help of Sutherland's Battery of artillery and Lipscomb's South Carolina cavalry.
During the night the troops began to come in from our division.
But a reconnoissance the next morning showed that General Butler had taken advantage of the darkness, re-embarked his army, and abandoned his expedition.
The navy had bombarded Fort Fisher for two days, but inflicted slight loss.
Kirkland's bold and spirited defense must have convinced Butler that we had a large force, as Koontz had told him that Longstreet wa