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[435] from Colonels Hill and Ramseur. The cause of the absence of a report in case of Colonel Hill I have explained. Colonel Ramseur was severely wounded on the first instant, in the engagement, and has not been able to communicate with me since. My brigade was composed of new troops, and those principally who had never been under fire of any description.

During the whole of the afternoon of the twenty-fifth, all of them were subjected to quite a lively fire from the enemy's artillery, and during that and the conflicts of the days and nights subsequent, it behaved in a manner highly creditable to well-tried veterans. To all the field officers I owe my thanks, particularly to Colonels Clarke and Rutledge, Ramseur and Ransom.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. Ransom, Jr., Brigadier-General.

Battle of Malvern Hill.

headquarters Second brigade, Holmes's division, Drewry's Bluff, Va., July 11, 1862.
Colonel S. S. Anderson, Assistant Adjutant-General, General Huger's Division:
sir: Having been temporarily attached to General Huger's command at the time, I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by my brigade in the action on Malvern Hill, during the afternoon of the second instant:

My brigade consisted of the following named regiments, all from North Carolina: Twenty-fourth, Colonel Clarke; Twenty-fifth, Colonel Rutledge; Twenty-sixth, Colonel Vance; Thirty-fifth, Colonel Ransom; Forty-eighth, Colonel Hill; Forty-ninth, Colonel Ramseur. Colonel Hill's regiment was absent on duty with the brigade of General Walker. The effective force present was about three thousand. Between two and three o'clock P. M., the brigade left the Quaker road, and was put in line of battle, by General Huger's order, about a mile and a quarter from where the action was then going on. The ground then occupied was a belt of woods, bordering on a small stream.

In this position we remained, exposed to the bursting of an occasional shell, until about five o'clock P. M., when a messenger reached me from General Magruder, asking that I would go to his support. The summons was not obeyed; but I sent word to General Huger to get instructions. His reply sustained my action. In about half an hour another order from General Magruder arrived. General Huger was present, and, under his direction, I informed General Magruder that orders to me must come through General Huger. The engagement was now very warm, and extended along our whole front. At seven o'clock P. M. I received word from General Magruder that he must have aid, if only a regiment. The message was so pressing that I at once directed Colonel Clarke to go, with his regiment, and report to General Magruder, and, at the same time, sent my Aid-de-camp, Lieutenant Broadnax, to General Huger for orders. Lieutenant B. brought me somewhat discretionary orders, to go or not, but not to place myself under General Magruder. The brigade was at once put in motion by the right flank, (as the line we had been occupying was at right angles to that upon which the battle was raging;) Colonel Clarke's regiment had already gone; Colonel Rutledge next followed; then Colonel Ransom, Colonel Ramseur, and Colonel Vance, all moved to the scene of conflict, at the double-quick. As each of the three first named regiments reached the field, they were at once thrown into action by General Magruder's orders. As the last two arrived, they were halted by me, to regain their breath, and then pushed forward, under as fearful a fire as the mind can conceive. In the charge made by Colonel Ransom's regiment, he was thrice wounded, and had to be taken from the field. The Lieutenant-Colonel (Petoray) then took command, and, in a few moments, he fell, mortally wounded. Colonel Rutledge's regiment went gallantly forward, and the Colonel was seriously stunned by the explosion of a shell, and the Major severely wounded. The fire was so firm that the three regiments were compelled to fall back under the crest of some intervening hills.

At this juncture, I arrived with Ransom's and Vance's regiments, and, ordering the whole to the right, so as to be able to form under cover, brought the brigade in line within two hundred yards of the enemy's batteries. This was upon our extreme right. The hills afforded capital cover. I had no difficulty in forming the line as I desired. In going to this position, I passed over a brigade commanded by Colonel Anderson, of Georgia, and requested him to support me in the charge I was about to make. This, to my sad disappointment, he declined to do.

It was now twilight. The line was put in motion, and moved steadily forward to within less than a hundred yards of the batteries. The enemy seemed to be unaware of our movement. Masses of his troops seemed to be moving from the left toward the right. Just at this instant the brigade raised a tremendous shout, and the enemy at once whirled into line, and opened a perfect sheet of fire from musketry and the batteries. We steadily advanced to within twenty yards of the guns. The enemy had concentrated his force to meet us. Our onward movement was checked. The line wavered, and fell back before the fire, the intensity of which is beyond description.

It was a bitter disappointment to be compelled to yield when their guns seemed almost in our hands. It was now dark, and I conceived it best to withdraw the brigade, which was quickly done, to near the point from which we had started at seven o'clock.

Although we did not succeed in taking the enemy's guns, I am proud to bear testimony to the resolute and gallant charge of the brigade. Officers and men behaved in every way as becomes the soldier of the Southern Confederacy. While I cannot but be happy in commending

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J. Bankhead Magruder (7)
A. A. G. Huger (7)
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