previous next

[204] rained into the awful chasm. The muskets left by the retreating Federals were thrown like pitchforks among the huddled troops. The shouts, the explosions, the screams, and groans added to the horror of the carnage. The clay in the pit was drenched with the blood of the dead and dying. The Southerners pushed in from both sides of the crater, forming a cordon of bayonets about it. The third and final charge was made, about two in the afternoon, and the bloody fight at the crater was ended as the brigade commanders followed Burnside's order to withdraw to the Federal lines. Both of Ledlie's brigade commanders were captured in the crater. The total Federal loss in this disastrous affair was over thirty-nine hundred, of whom all but one hundred were in the Ninth Corps. The Confederates lost about one thousand.

now came a season of comparative quiet about Petersburg, except for the strategic maneuverings of the Federals who were trying to find weak places in the Confederate walls. On August 18th, however, Grant sent General Warren to capture the Weldon Railroad. Desperate fighting was to be expected, for this was one of the important routes along which supplies came to the Confederate capital. The Federal forces moved out quietly from their camp, but the alert Beauregard was ready for them. By the time Warren had reached the Railroad, near the Globe Tavern, four miles from Petersburg, he was met by a force under Heth which at once drove him back. Rallying his troops, Warren entrenched on the Railroad.

the fight was renewed on the next day, when, strongly reenforced by Lee, the Confederates burst suddenly upon the Federals. Mahone thrust his gallant division through the Federal skirmish line and then turned and fought from the rear, while another division struck the right wing. The Union force was soon in confusion; more than two thousand were taken prisoners, including General Joseph Hayes, and but for the arrival of the Ninth Corps, the field would have been lost. Two days later, Lee again attacked the position by massing

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.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
G. K. Warren (4)
Fitzhugh Lee (4)
William Mahone (2)
Ledlie (2)
Heth (2)
Joseph Hayes (2)
Ulysses S. Grant (2)
Burnside (2)
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.
August 18th (2)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: