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[478] trees, and some of the drivers cut their traces and ran off upon the horses; the whole thing resulting in the loss of two guns and three caissons. Of all this I was totally ignorant until about nine or ten o'clock at night. Captain Graham by that time had succeeded in collecting some of his horses and men. I went back with him, and endeavored to recover his guns and caissons. One caisson was recovered, being near the road. The remaining carriages it was found impossible to find, owing to the darkness, and the pieces being off the road in a thick wood. Captain Graham went back in the morning, but reported that the enemy's pickets had possession of the ground. He went again after the enemy had evacuated their position on Malvern Hill, but found that his guns had been taken off; he thinks they were taken into Richmond, under the supposition that they had been abandoned by the enemy; upon this point I cannot even give an opinion. This whole matter will be made the subject of investigation, as General Holmes has ordered charges to be preferred against the officers upon whom, at present, the responsibility appears to rest.

It is with pleasure that I turn from the relation of these mortifying circumstances, in order to call to the favorable notice of the department the gallant conduct of the few officers and men who were under my immediate command at the rifle battery. Captain Branch, First Lieutenant Cooper, of French's battery, and First Lieutenant Coleman, of Brem's battery, served their pieces themselves, and did everything that men could do to encourage their men, and make their fire effective, under a very hot fire from a much larger number of the enemy's guns. Lieutenant Cooper was wounded severely, but declined to leave the field, until positively ordered to go to the surgeon. After he was disabled, Sergeants Jesse Newton and George Newton had charge of the two pieces, and acted very gallantly. Other cases of individual good conduct I witnessed, but cannot give names, as the men were mostly strangers to me.

Several of the batteries are much in need of men; there is a good deal of sickness amongst them, though generally not of a serious nature. I have directed the Captains of batteries, in need of men, to write the officers in charge of conscripts of their respective States, and ask them to forward the number of conscripts necessary to fill up their batteries.

General Holmes has recommended that Cohoon's battalion, which has about one hundred and twenty-five effective men, partly from Virginia and partly from North Carolina, be disbanded as an infantry battalion, and the men assigned to the batteries of this division.

If his recommendation should be complied with, this number would just about supply us.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

James Deshler, Colonel and Chief of Artillery, Dept. N. C.

Report of Light Artillery Companies serving with Major-General Holmes's Division, Confederate States Army, July 15, 1862.

name of battery.From what State.Total Number of Men.Total Effective.Number of Guns.Six-pounders.Twelve-pounder howitzers.Parrott Rifles.Three-inch Rifles.Efficiency.Where Situated.remarks.
French's Battery.Virginia1986 312Excellent.Near Petersb'g.Two rifle guns engaged in action near Malvern Cliff on 30th June. First Lieutenant Cooper and eight men wounded; five horses killed, none wounded. Did good service. Battery also engaged with a gunboat and transport in James River, near Fort Powhatan, on 10th instant.
Branch's Battery.Virginia13795622 2Good, but needs drilling.Near Petersb'g.Two rifle guns engaged in action near Malvern Cliff, 30th June. One man wounded, one horse killed, and one wounded. Did good service.
Brem's Battery.N. Carolina.112796 4 2Good. Needs drilling.Near Petersb'g.One rifle gun engaged in action near Malvern Cliff, 30th June. Did good service. Battery had seven men wounded, four horses killed and four wounded. One limber chest exploded. Battery also engaged gunboat and transport on James River, near Fort Powhatan, on 10th instant.
Graham's Battery.Virginia632432  1Needs drill and discipline.Near Petersb'g.Lost two guns in action near Malvern Cliff, on 30th June, though not directly in action. See accompanying letter, marked “A.”
Grandy'sVirginia12470622 2Needs drill.Near Petersb'g.Not in any recent action. One gun not in use, awaiting harness.
Loyd'sN. C.10274422   Near Petersb'g.Not in any recent action.
Total 5384403181319   

1 Company detached. Total not known exactly.

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