was eleven feet wide, was covered with earth.
The approach to the bridge from the south side was of raised corduroy.
The length of the whole structure, including the approaches, was 4,200 feet. The length of the bridge proper was nearly 1,100 feet.
Having crossed, we moved forward over the corduroy, through the wood, into the open country.
The surface, as you proceed southerly from the river, varies from low bottom land with patches of morass to undulating swell; this again is broken by shallow valleys, through which sluggish rivulets flow, fed by springs along their banks.
The annual slow decay of the rank vegetation on the banks of these low, damp water-courses, which were the natural outlets of the drainage of the camps, contributed to make this section south of the river a busy place for the hospital steward, and to increase the number of respondents to sick-call.
Into this region we were now moving, and an observation of the infantry and artillery, that during the day were along the route with us, led us to infer that the remainder of the right wing was being brought across the river.
This inference was, however, hasty.
It was only Franklin
's corps; Porter
's remained on the left bank till after the battle of Gaines' Farm
It was the Sixth Army Corps, that was being moved out to positions on the right of the advanced forces, which had been for weeks on the south side of the river.
In the disposition of the corps on a line drawn northwest of Fair Oaks
's division occupied the right, Bartlett
's brigade and our battery being on the right of Slocum
Among the troops of this brigade were the Sixteenth and Twentyseventh New York Volunteers, who had been with us ever since the reorganization of the army in the fall of 1861.
The latter regiment had been led at Bull Run
by our brave and able general of division, Slocum
, and later had been commanded by our gallant general of brigade, Bartlett
In front of the infantry of this part of the line was a tract of hard timber, and through this wood, three fourths of a mile away, a portion of it along the banks of a ravine which led to the north, was the right section of our picket line.
From these pickets, ranged along the ravine, Richmond
would be about west perhaps five miles away, their posts being probably the nearest approach they had yet made to the Confederate stronghold.