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[180]

Report of Colonel Oates, Fifteenth Alabama regiment.

headquarters Fifteenth Alabama regiment, August 8th, 1863.
Lieutenant B. Paterson, A. A. A. General.
I have the honor to report, in obedience to orders from brigade headquarters, the participation of my regiment in the battle near Gettysburg on the 2d ult.:

My regiment occupied the centre of the brigade when the line of battle was formed. During the advance the two regiments on my right were moved by the left flank across my rear, which threw me on the extreme right of the whole line. I encountered the enemy's sharpshooters posted behind a stone fence, and sustained some loss thereby. It was here that Lieutenant-Colonel I. B. Fragin, a most excellent and gallant officer, received a severe wound in the right knee, which caused him to lose his leg. Privates Kennedy, of company B, and——Trimner, of company G, were killed at this point, and Private Spencer, company D, severely wounded. After crossing the fence I received an order from Brigadier-General Law to left wheel my regiment and move in the direction of the heights upon my left, which order I failed to obey for the reason that when I received it I was rapidly advancing up the mountain, and in my front I discovered a heavy force of the enemy. Besides this there was great difficulty in accomplishing the manoeuvre at that moment, as the regiment on my left (Forty-seventh Alabama) was crowding me on the left and running into my regiment, which had already created considerable confusion. In the event that I had obeyed the order, I should have come in contact with the regiment on my left, and also have exposed my right flank to an enfilading fire from the enemy. I, therefore, continued to press forward my right, passing over the top of the mountain on the right of the line. On reaching the foot of the mountain below I found the enemy in heavy force posted in rear of large rocks upon a slight elevation beyond a depression of some three hundred yards in width between the base of the mountain and the open plain beyond. I engaged them, my right meeting the left of their line exactly. Here I lost several gallant officers and men. After firing two or three rounds I discovered that the enemy were giving way in my front. I ordered a charge, and the enemy in my front fled, but that portion of his line confronting the two companies on my left


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Spencer (1)
B. Paterson (1)
W. C. Oates (1)
Kennedy (1)
I. B. Fragin (1)
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August 8th, 1863 AD (1)
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