previous next

[669] the gallant Colonel J. H. Means, of the Seventeenth regiment South Carolina volunteers, and Colonel J. M. Gadberry, of the Eighteenth regiment. These brave men were shot down while nobly leading their regiments into action. Colonel Gadberry was killed instantly; Colonel Means, mortally wounded, survived two days. It is but justice to the memory of these noble and gallant officers to mention my appreciation of their valuable services. Colonel Means, though much advanced in years, ever exhibited the energy of youth in battling our ruthless foe, and devoting his whole ability to our sacred cause. His death fully exemplifies his devotion to his country. Colonel Gadberry was conspicuous during the battle for his dauntless conduct and unflinching firmness. Among the wounded were the brave and energetic Major F. G. Palmer, of the Holcomb legion, and the gallant Colonel H. L. Benbow, of the Twenty-first regiment. The list of the other gallant dead and wounded officers is herewith enclosed, and I would respectfully refer the Major-General commanding to the reports of their immediate commands for the history of their actions. To Colonel P. F. Stevens, of the Holcomb legion, commanding the brigade, I am much indebted for his untiring zeal and dauntless courage, cheering his men, under heavy fire, during the entire engagement. My command succeeded in driving the enemy from their batteries with great slaughter, and turning his own batteries against his retreating forces. A large number of small arms and accoutrements and three stand of colors were captured. For the action of the Texas and Third Georgia brigades, I respectfully refer to the reports of General Hood and the Colonels commanding.

On the fourteenth of August, my division was ordered to support the command of Brigadier-General Rodes, on the left of the road, near South Mountain. On marching my brigade up the mountain, on our extreme left, I was informed that the two brigades, under the immediate command of Brigadier-General Hood, had been detached, by order of the Major-General commanding, to support our right, and I was further ordered to hold my position on the left, and that reinforcements would be sent. On my arrival at the summit of the mountain the skirmishers of the enemy were met, supported by several of his batteries, which commanded my position. I ordered Colonel Stevens, commanding brigade, to push over the summit and engage the enemy then firing on General Rodes's troops, retiring. Colonel Stevens soon became engaged with a much superior force, two columns of the enemy advancing rapidly upon his small command. This force, however, was bravely met, and the position held until the troops on my right had retired, leaving my brigade nearly surrounded by the enemy. I then directed my troops to retire, firing, to the east side of the mountain, which was done in good order. During the night, I received an order to march in the direction of Sharpsburg, and my division ordered to act as rear guard, which duty was performed until our arrival at the Antietam River, on the evening of the fifteenth September.

On the morning of the sixteenth, General Hood, with his two brigades, were detached and sent to the support of Major-General D. H. Hill, leaving me but two brigades, Colonels Anderson's and Evans's brigades. During the day my command was held as support to Colonel Walton's artillery, also with orders to defend the bridge over the Antietam, and my skirmishers were engaged throughout the day with the sharpshooters of the enemy.

On the morning of the seventeenth, the enemy attacked our left in force, and about noon Colonel Anderson's brigade was detached to support General Hood, then supporting Major-General D. H. Hill, on our left. About two o'clock P. M., I was ordered to rally the troops then flocking to the town from our left, and to bring them into action. After considerable exertion, with the assistance of my entire staff, I succeeded in collecting about two hundred and fifty men and officers, whom I formed into two commands, and placed them respectively under the command of Colonels Colquitt and Iverson, of Major-General D. H. Hill's division. At three o'clock, observing the enemy approaching my position, (directly on the left of the road,) also attempting to cross the bridge on my right, I ordered an advance, Colonels Colquitt and Iverson on the left, with Boyce's battery, and Colonel Stevens on the right, supported by two batteries of Colonel S. D. Lee's battalion, who came timely, at my request, to my assistance, and rendered material aid in driving the enemy back across the river, with Colonel Stevens's command as skirmishers on the right, while I attacked the enemy with Colquitt's and Iverson's commands on the left.

This little command gallantly drove the enemy from his cover in the cornfield, and caused him to retreat in confusion, leaving a number of their dead and two stand of colors, the latter having been shot down by a well-directed fire of Captain Boyce's battery. I also requested Colonel Walton, of the artillery, to open fire on the enemy's batteries that had crossed the bridge, which, being promptly done, had the desired effect of driving them back. My brigade then resumed its original position, and bivouacked for the night, sleeping on their arms. For individual instances of gallantry and distinction, I beg leave to refer to the reports of the immediate commanders.

To my general and personal staff I am much indebted, for their bravery and fidelity in carrying my orders. Captain T. D. Eason, ordnance officer; Captain A. L. Evans, Assistant Adjutant-General; First Lieutenant Samuel J. Corrie, Aid-de-camp, were often under heavy fire, and executed their several duties with intrepidity. My faithful courier, Mr. Farquhar Trazevant, was shot down near me by a shell, inflicting a wound from which he has since died. His loss was severe to me, both personally and in his official capacity. I am also pained to announce the fall of Captain Samuel Jordan, Assistant Adjutant-General of Colonel Colquitt's brigade, who was

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 Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
South Mountain, Va. (Virginia, United States) (1)
Sharpsburg (Maryland, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
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.
September 15th (1)
August 14th (1)
17th (1)
16th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: