previous next

[463] enemy had hastily thrown up a breastwork, we fell upon his skirmishers, who, upon our approach, scattered and fled in every direction. The regiment halted at the edge of the cleared ground, and volley after volley was thrown into the ranks of the enemy, who returned upon us a very hot and fatal fire. In this musketry fight, some of my men, having obtained patent cartridges, shot seventy times. At one time, just after dark, the belief seemed to take possession of the enemy, as it did of ourselves, that we were mutually fighting friends and the firing ceased for a time entirely. During the cessation of fire, an officer came over to us and inquired who we were. I demanded to know to what regiment he belonged; to which he replied, “The Twentieth Indiana” --which was in the woods to our left and front. Thereupon he was politely informed that he was in the midst of the Fourteenth regiment South Carolina volunteers, and at the same time ordered to the rear for safe keeping. A few moments after this interview, an officer of the enemy was distinctly heard to give the command, “Commence firing;” and immediately the whole ridge in our front was a sheet of flame. They poured into the regiment, for a short time, the most destructive fire. We, however, held our ground, and returned the fire until the enemy fled. The Fourteenth certainly fired the last gun in the battle of Monday. We remained on the ground until all the firing had ceased, and then joined the other regiments of the brigade. Once during the evening, the enemy endeavored to turn our left flank; but Lieutenant-Colonel Simpson directed upon them the fire of the left companies, and with distinguished gallantry drove them back. If we could have had a regiment on our left, we certainly would have captured the Twentieth Indiana regiment. In this contest also, as well as that of Friday, we lost many valuable officers and men. Captains Owens, Harper, and Stuckie were wounded — the first two, I fear, very seriously. Lieutenant Davis died gallantly on the field; and Lieutenants Watson and Miller were wounded, besides many others killed and wounded, a list of whom is enclosed.

Seven captains went into the fight; six were wounded, leaving only one for duty.

In the combat of Monday night, we took about twenty prisoners, the names and regiments of some of whom are remembered: Harrison Patrick, Twelfth Pennsylvania reserves, company B; Frederick Harvey, Fortieth New York, company H; Captain Reid, Twentieth Indiana regiment, company K, and fifteen or sixteen others, mostly of the Twentieth Indiana regiment. Having no place to keep these prisoners, they were turned over, by my direction, to a mounted escort in charge of prisoners.

As we were going into the charge, General Pryor (in rear of whose brigade we passed) presented to General Gregg a battle-flag, bearing upon its folds the names of “Williamsburg,” and “Seven Pines,” and belonging to St. Paul's Louisiana battery, which the General intrusted to the Fourteenth for that occasion. I called upon company D, the flag company, for a flagbearer, and T. W. Carmile, quite a youth, volunteered to carry it, and did carry it through the fight with great gallantry. It was struck by balls five times during the contest, and yet the bearer escaped unhurt. I recommend young Carmile to the favorable consideration of the General, for his distinguished gallantry.

I cannot omit to mention, also, the services of Lieutenant James Dunlap, of company F, who, in addition to his other laborious duties as commanding officer of his company, after his gallant Captain, Owens, had fallen, discharged, also, at my request, the duties of Adjutant of the regiment. I take pleasure in commending him as a most faithful and efficient officer.

As my Adjutant and both Orderlies were shot down in the first action, (Orderly White was killed, and Orderly Harris seriously, if not mortally, wounded,) I am unable to give the exact number that went into the different combats. I know that several fainted, and many broke down, on the march. I judge that about five hundred went into the fight on Friday, and about two hundred into that of Monday evening. It will be seen that our loss is more than half the number engaged. We lost, Friday, eighteen killed, and one hundred and ninety-seven wounded and missing; and on Monday, eleven killed and sixty-five wounded and missing--total, two hundred and ninety-one.

Some of those reported as wounded have since died. I have heard of the deaths of Captain Owens, Sergeant Franks, and Albert Boyce, and I greatly fear that others have and that many will still die.

The honored and lamented dead have laid down their lives in a just cause — defending their country from invasion, and their homes from pollution. They died gallantly. Their names will be embalmed in history as martyrs of liberty, and added to the long roll of Carolina's heroes.

I have been greatly indebted to Surgeon Hunt, and Assistant-Surgeon Youngblood, and their assistants, for their indefatigable attention to the numerous wounded.

Hoping that the General will be satisfied with the conduct of the regiment,

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

S. Mcgowan, Colonel Fourteenth Regiment S. C. Vols.

Report of Colonel Brockenbrough.

camp Fortieth Virginia regiment, July 24, 1862.
Captain: I have the honor to submit the following as my report of the operations of the Fortieth Virginia volunteers, in the recent battles around Richmond:

On the afternoon of the twenty-sixth June, this regiment, being in advance, was the first to cross the Chickahominy at Meadow Bridge. Advancing toward Mechanicsville, we encountered the enemy's pickets, at intervals, and drove them before us until we reached the village. Receiving orders at this point to charge the enemy in their

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
July 24th, 1862 AD (1)
June 26th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: