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[535] and sugar-house. All acted splendidly. The ground so hotly contested, was held during the whole time, the enemy being driven off at every point by the infantry; while the fire of the Diana, the thirty-two pounder, and the guns on each side of the river, before and behind their breastworks, were silenced by Macks, McLaflin's, and Healy's artillery. Observing this, General Paine rode up to Captain Mack, thanked him and his command, when the brigade gave three cheers for the battery and its gallant chief. This was followed by three more for General Paine, the members of the artillery company joining with spirit. Several shells had struck some buildings in the rear and to the right of the enemy's works on this side of the Teche, setting them on fire. The artillery firing, infantry fighting, skirmishing and the burning buildings presented one of the grandest spectacles I ever witnessed.

During the whole of this sharp engagement our forces were in line of battle a little farther in the rear, skirmishing ahead, the main body gradually approaching nearer the enemy's breastworks, and the artillery replying to the rapid fire of their batteries.

The artillery about ten o'clock opened with renewed vigor along the whole line.

In addition to the batteries I have already mentioned were Captains Carruth's and Bainbridge's, of Weitzel's brigade. They fired from their positions on the left until all their ammunition was expended, when they retired. Several of the enemy's guns were either silenced entirely by these batteries or compelled to change their positions.

Between twelve and one o'clock, Captain Duryea's battery of twelve-pound Napoleons was ordered up in front, and was soon firing upon all the batteries of the enemy on this side of the Teche. Lieutenant Morris, with one section of the battery, was ordered to proceed forward to within one hundred and fifty yards of their breastworks. They did so, and engaged the enemy from that time to five P. M., doing considerable execution, firing in all two hundred and fifty-six rounds, when he ceased for want of ammunition. A shell from the enemy about one o'clock killed one of the drivers, his horse, and struck a caisson. The latter was soon repaired.

One shot from Captain Duryea's command struck and dismounted a large brass field-piece of the enemy posted near the woods on the left. It was a gun of Valverde's battery. From the effects of this shot Captain Valverde and four horses are reported to have been instantly killed, and four men wounded.

The two thirty-pound Parrotts which engaged the Diana were now turned on the land-batteries, distant about a mile and a quarter, compelling the rebel artillerists to change their guns from one part of their works to another, as could be seen from the smoke of their pieces.

The constant roar of artillery was now literally deafening, (half-past 3 P. M.) All day there had been firing, with more or less vigor, at different parts of the field; but now all the artillery appeared to be engaged, battery replying to battery and gun answering gun.

It is known that the enemy had three or four batteries behind their breastworks on the west side of the Teche, among them Valverde's and Semmes's, as well as the guns of the Diana (now silenced) and the large gun on the redoubt near the road.

Our battery had already thrown grape and canister from the other side of the Teche, and it was believed that besides this others were there in reserve.

I thought that the firing of the previous day's engagement was terrific; but it was nothing in comparison with this, which was the heaviest I ever heard, and continued for three or four hours in a perfect roll. The whistling of each shot and shell, as it cut through the air, was distinctly heard above the din. Soon a haze filled the atmosphere, caused by the large quantities of smoke rising from the discharged guns and bursting shells, and the number of the latter exploding in the air resembled fire-flies at night, the whole horizon in front appearing to shoot out a sudden jet of yellow fire, which, disappearing, was instantly followed by a circle of white fleecy smoke, which gradually became less distinct and finally vanished.

The enemy's breastworks, extending from the Teche to the woods on the west side, and to Grand Lake on the east, were evidently of great strength and in admirable position. On Sunday they were invisible to the naked eye, and at the distance of three quarters of a mile could scarcely be distinguished with a glass, owing to their similarity to the earth and plantation ridges around. Now our forces were much nearer and in plain sight. The dirt from the falling missiles was rising in showers along the enemy's ranks, while the same was the case in our front, every place where the shot and shell struck over the fields being plainly visible from the clouds of dark earth suddenly rising to a height of several feet in the air.

The coolest and apparently the least concerned of all the brave men on the field were the Commanding Generals, and none more so than General Banks himself. Certainly none were in greater danger from the enemy's guns. Surrounded by his staff, he rode from one portion of the field to another, and both days visited the other Generals and inspected the lines himself. Though headquarters on the battle-field might be said to be on the road and slightly to the left, opposite the trees and sugar-house, (which position was so hotly contested in the morning,) they were compelled to be changed frequently, as the large gun on the redoubt and a battery over the river threw shot and shell rapidly in that neighborhood, in answer to Captain Hammick's twenty-pounder Parrotts, posted on the road a few yards to the right, and one of our thirty pounders, making it one of the warmest places on the field along our lines.

Captain Cox, Co. K, of this regiment, received orders about this time to post his two brass


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Paine (2)
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G. Weitzel (1)
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Orlando H. Morris (1)
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R. B. Mack (1)
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