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[486] enemy soon ceased to attempt to dispute the crossing of the creek, which was done very quietly, and without any interruption. After a short rest, to enable us to collect and provide for our wounded, we resumed our march, and soon came upon the camp of the Seventh Massachusetts regiment, who seemed at first disposed to give us battle; but, upon giving the order to charge bayonets, at double-quick, they broke and fled. We continued to advance, and upon gaining an open field, commanding a view of the enemy's position at Cold Harbor, we were subjected to a severe fire of shells from the battery of the enemy. This fire was soon silenced by our own battery, and then, under your order, I advanced upon the position of the enemy through a thick, swampy piece of ground, and formed line of battle on the edge of the open field. In a short time I saw a brigade moving down upon us. When within easy range of us, they opened a most deadly fire upon my regiment, wounding and killing a large number of my officers and men, and amongst these all of my color guard. Here was my principal loss; amongst them Lieutenant-Colonel Smith, who had distinguished himself for gallantry and good conduct, although feeble from a recent severe illness. His wound, which at first was apparently slight, proved, eventually, mortal, and he sank to rest calm and composed, feeling that he had done his duty to his country. After being so severely handled, I considered it proper to take my regiment out from under fire, which was accordingly done. Upon coming out of the swamp, I found Colonel Marshall, with a remnant of his regiment. This, with my own, I formed in line, and, under orders from General Lee and Major-General A. P. Hill, I took command of these two fragments of regiments, and led them into the wood in rear of the position occupied by the brigades of Generals Anderson and Field. Soon I was joined by a portion of Colonel Edwards's regiment, under Major Farrow, and with this portion of the brigade, I occupied the ground as above indicated, and on Saturday morning, I marched my regiment, by your orders, to another position, near the battle-ground, where we remained until Sunday, the twenty-ninth of June. On this day we recrossed the Chickahominy. We marched in pursuit of the enemy, but did not come up with them until Monday evening, the thirtieth of June. Then, although under fire, and having several soldiers and one Lieutenant (Sweeny, company, K) wounded by the fire of the enemy, there was no chance of our coming in actual contact with the enemy, from the fact that the ground in front of us was occupied by others of our own troops. We were likewise drawn out on Tuesday afternoon, first July, but did not become engaged with the enemy, although for some time under the fire of artillery. We continued the pursuit of the enemy, (with the rest of the Second brigade,) who had sought the shelter of their gunboats; and, after remaining for twenty-four hours near them, we were ordered back to the neighborhood of Richmond, to go into camp.

I feel that it would be invidious, where all of my officers and most of my soldiers behaved so well, to single out any one for special praise, except that I desire to mention private Dominick Spellman, of company K, who bore my colors gallantly during the battle, after Sergeant Taylor and Corporal Hayne, who, carrying the colors, were shot down — the latter taking them from my hands when the former was first struck, to be mortally wounded himself immediately. I have promoted private Spellman to be color-bearer, for gallantry on the field of battle.

I beg to submit appended list of casualties, marked A, and likewise lists showing where each officer and soldier of the regiment was on the three days in which we were engaged with the enemy.

I am, General, very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

D. H. Hamilton, Colonel First Regiment South Carolina Volunteers.


Letter of General Gregg to General Cooper.

headquarters Second brigade, Light division, Laurel Hill, July 18, 1862.
To General S. Cooper, Adjutant-General of the Army, Richmond:
General: I learn from Colonel Hamilton, commanding First South Carolina volunteers, that, in an interview with yourself and the Secretary of War, the other day, the name of Major McCrady, of the same regiment, having been somewhat accidentally mentioned, Colonel Hamilton expressed the opinion that Major McCrady had not behaved properly, saying he had served on my staff on the twenty-seventh of June, but could not find his regiment until it was driven back, and that now he had gone home on sick leave. Upon which you remarked that Colonel Hamilton had better have him ordered back, and that you would issue such order, if Colonel Hamilton desired it, and that if he should not report, you would have a letter of another kind addressed to him, which would compel him to resign. To which the Secretary of War assented.

I differ entirely with Colonel Hamilton in the view which he takes of Major McCrady's conduct, and I beg leave to interpose to prevent any hasty action from being taken against Major McCrady, without giving him a fair hearing. When my brigade was put in march, at the commencement of the late operations, Major McCrady was sick in Richmond. He left a sick bed, and overtook me on the battle-field at Cold Harbor, looking extremely feeble and ill. He said to me that he thought he might be able to accompany me and perform some staff duty, although not strong enough to accompany his regiment. This might well be, as I had required the field officers to dismount a while for the purpose of seeing better and sending orders more promptly. Myself and my staff remained on horseback. I do not think Major McCrady could have reasonably anticipated less risk in accompanying me on staff duty, mounted, than in marching with his regiment on foot. I requested him to accompany me, and he did so. In the heat of the battle, I sent him to


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