divisions on my right and left must have been decisive. Some half an hour after my division had ceased to struggle against odds of more than ten to one, I had to fall back. McLaws's division advanced but to share the same fate. So far as I can learn, none of our troops drew trigger, except McLaws's, mine, and a portion of Huger's. Notwithstanding the tremendous odds against us, and the blundering arrangements of the battle, we inflicted heavy loss upon the Yankees. They retreated in the night, leaving their dead unburied, their wounded on the ground, three pieces of artillery abandoned, and thousands of superior rifles thrown away. None of their previous retreats exhibited such unmistakable signs of rout and demoralization. The wheat-fields at Shirley were all trampled down by the frightened herd, too impatient to follow the road; arms, accoutrements, knapsacks, over-coats, and clothing of every description, were widely strewn on the road-side, in the woods, and in the field. Numerous wagons and ambulances were found stuck in the mud, typical of Yankee progress in war. The actual loss in battle was, in my opinion, (though most persons differ with me,) greater on our side than on that of the Yankees. The advantage in position, range, calibre, and number of their guns, was with them. The prestige of victory, and the enthusiasm inspired by it, were with us. Their masses, too, were so compact, that shot, and shell, and balls could hardly fail to accomplish a noble work. My division was employed during the week after the battle in gathering up arms and accoutrements, burying our own and the Yankees' dead, and removing the wounded of both armies. We then returned to our old camp near Richmond, with much cause for gratitude to the Author of all good for raising the siege of that city, and crowning our arms with glorious success. The following list of killed and wounded will show that we lost four thousand out of ten thousand taken into the field. Among these we have to mourn those gallant spirits, Colonel Robert A. Smith, Forty-fourth Georgia; Colonel Stokes and Major Skinner, First North Carolina; Colonel Gaston Meares, Third North Carolina; Colonel Warthem, Twenty-eighth Georgia; Lieutenant-Colonel Faison, Twentieth North Carolina, and Captain Thomas M. Blount, Quartermaster of the Fourth North Carolina, who fell while gallantly carrying, on horseback, the colors of the Thirtieth North Carolina regiment. list of casualties.
This embraces the entire loss in the division, with the exception of one battery, from which no report has been received.
My thanks are due to all of my staff for faithful and efficient service.
Major Ratchford, Adjutant-General, and Lieutenant Reid, Aid-de-camp, were much exposed, and were ever prompt and active.
Major Pierson, Chief of Artillery, was always on horseback, by the side of the battery engaged.
Captain Taylor, Inspector-General, rendered valuable and important service.
The ordnance officers, Captain West and Lieutenant T. J. Moore, attended faithfully to their duties.
Lieutenant Sydnor, of the Hanover Light Dragoons, volunteer Aid at Cold Harbor, was conspicuous there for his zeal and gallantry.
Sergeant Harmeling, commanding the couriers, and private Lewis Jones, courier, merit particular mention for their zeal and intelligent performance of duty.
|Nelson's Battery, no report,||0||0||0|
D. H. Hill, Major-General.
List of Casualties in Major-General D. H. Hill's Division, during the Engagements around Richmond, commencing June 26, 1862, and terminating July 1, 1862.
Brigadier-General R. E. Rodes's brigade, (First.)
|regiment.||Cold Harbor, June 27, 1862.||Malvern Hill, July 1, 1862.||Grand Total.|