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[524] the shadow of its former strength and vigor. . . . ‘I do not care to die,’ cried Hancock, ‘but I pray God I may never leave this field.’ The agony of that day never passed away from the proud soldier.

Grant's only mention of this affair in his final report is: ‘On the 24th, the Second corps and Gregg's division of cavalry, while at Reams' Station destroying the railroad, were attacked, and after desperate fighting a part of our line gave way and five pieces of artillery fell into the hands of the enemy.’

The various combats between the two opposing armies at Petersburg, during the month of August, resulted in a loss of about 8,000 men to Grant and 2,000 to Lee. Grant persistently continued his attacks on Lee's flanks, but mainly on his right, his object being to so extend his left to the westward as to capture and hold Lee's lines of communication with the South. In his report, Grant writes: ‘By the 12th of September a branch railroad was completed from the City Point & Petersburg railroad to the Weldon road, enabling us to supply without difficulty, in all weather, the army in front of Petersburg. The extension of our lines across the Weldon railroad compelled the enemy to so extend his that it seemed he could have but few troops north of the James for the defense of Richmond.’ This railway extension was between two lines of formidable intrenchments, safely guarding it from attack.

After reaching the conclusion just mentioned, Grant, on the night of September 28th, sent the Tenth corps, under Birney, and the Eighteenth corps, under Ord, to the north of the James, by the way of Deep Bottom (a way by which he had already so many times sent expeditions for the same purpose), to attack the ‘few troops’ which he supposed Lee now had at Chaffin's farm, or Fort Harrison, for the defense of his right, resting on the James. The Federal attack was made on the morning of the 29th, as Grant reports, ‘carrying the very strong fortifications and intrenchments below Chaffin's farm, known as Fort Harrison, capturing fifteen pieces of artillery and the New Market road and intrenchments. This success was followed up by a gallant attack on Fort Gilmer, immediately in front of the Chaffin's farm fortifications, in which we were repulsed with heavy loss. Kautz's cavalry was pushed forward on the road to the right of this, supported by infantry, and reached the ’

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