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[479]

The above comprises all of the batteries serving with General Holmes's division in the field. There are a number of other batteries throughout the department of North Carolina, but I have not received any returns from them since the division took the field. All of these batteries, excepting French's and Brem's, have only been under my command for a few days, so that the remarks regarding efficiency are necessarily more or less imperfect.

James Deshler, Col. and Chief of Artillery, Department of N. Carolina.
Camp near Swift Creek, Va., July 15, 1862.

On the foregoing report was the following indorsement:

headquarters artillery corps, July 22, 1862.
There is reason to believe that the two guns herein reported as lost from Captain Graham's battery, were not captured by the enemy, but secured by some company of our own. It is positively affirmed at the Ordnance Department in Richmond, that a brass six-pounder, indubitably identified as Captain Graham's, was turned in there disabled, and has been subsequently readjusted and delivered to Captain Graham. Of the caisson and Parrott gun nothing is known; but if the six-pounder was secured, that might have been. The enemy seem not to have occupied that position in force. Respectfully submitted.

W. N. Pendleton, Brigadier-General and Chief of Artillery.


Report of Colonel Barnes.

headquarters Twelfth regiment S. C. V., Laurel Hill, July 17, 1862.
Captain A. C. Haskell, A. A. General:
sir: In obedience to orders from brigade headquarters, I submit the following report of the part performed by the Twelfth regiment, in the late battles before Richmond:

On the twenty-sixth ultimo, about five o'clock P. M., we crossed the Chickahominy near the Central Railroad, having bivouacked, the night previous, some five miles below that point, on the Meadow Bridge road. Immediately after crossing, we turned in the direction of Mechanicsville. I had not advanced far before we came under the shells of the enemy, who had been attacked by the advanced forces of our division. We continued our march until we came within a half or three fourths of a mile from the point at which the battle was progressing, formed in line of battle in a flat where we were enabled to protect ourselves from the shells and shot of the enemy by lying on the ground. In this position we remained during the night, being annoyed considerably by the shells, until a short time before dark, when the firing ceased. With the exception of one man, who was very slightly injured by a piece of shell, we escaped unhurt.

Early the next morning we marched across the Mechanicsville turnpike road in the direction of Beaver Dam Creek. Arriving within half a mile of that stream, we halted, formed line of battle, and sent forward company B, Captain Miller, as skirmishers. We were then ordered by General Gregg to cross the stream and occupy the hills beyond. This order was promptly executed, and without much resistance, except from scattering shots from the pickets of the enemy, who fled as we advanced. We were now in full view of deserted camps and burning fires in front. We immediately continued our march, and about half a mile farther we entered a piece of woods where a large heap of commissary and other stores were on fire; but the quantity of knapsacks, oil-cloths, and other articles scattered through the woods and along the roads, gave unmistakable evidence that the enemy had left his camp in great haste.

Here we halted a short time, when General Gregg care up, and ordered the regiment to be formed in column of companies, and to advance in that order. Just at this moment I was told that the enemy had been seen on our left. This fact I communicated to the General, when he ordered the two left companies to be sent in that direction to reconnoitre. Immediately company B, Captain Miller, and company K, Captain Neville, were sent, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Jones. The regiment now moved off in columns, and soon arrived at a church, where we met with General Jackson's command, or a portion of it. We remained here a short time, during which the two companies sent out to reconnoitre on our left sent in nine prisoners, and soon after came themselves, bringing eight more, making seventeen in all captured. We continued the march without further resistance until we arrived in the vicinity of Gaines's Mill, on Powhite Creek. Here, the enemy making demonstrations of resistance, the regiment was formed in line of battle, and company B, Captain Miller, thrown forward as skirmishers. A spirited attack being made by the skirmishers, and at the same time a few shells being thrown from one of our batteries, the enemy were soon put to flight, making toward a pine thicket beyond the creek. Advancing to the creek we found the bridge torn up; the regiment was ordered to cross on the dam, and after crossing to wait for orders. In a short time the bridge was repaired so as to enable the whole command to cross. The regiment was then formed in line, and throwing forward company A, Lieutenant Parker, and company D, Captain Vonlandigham, as skirmishers, we advanced at double-quick towards the pine thicket, the enemy, as before, firing and retiring before us. In this advance private N. S. Camp, company A, was killed. Continuing the pursuit, we soon came in sight of the enemy in force, at Cold Harbor. In a few moments a fight commenced between our artillery and that of the enemy. The shell from the batteries of the enemy soon began to fall thick and fast around us, and taking the double-quick, we advanced to a branch in front of us, and toward the enemy, under a heavy fire of shell; crossing this branch we came to halt for nearly two hours. During the halt, by order of the General, I sent company F, Captain McMeekin, and company H, Captain Erwin, in advance, to watch the movements of the enemy, and afterward relieved them by company D, Captain


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