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before them, and were in turn cut down and driven back, some having been killed within thirty feet of our posts.
Thus for two hours the two battalions, of less than 300 men, kept at bay their several massed lines until darkness put a stop to the fight.
During this time our troops were throwing up a line of entrenchments about half a mile in rear, and seemed satisfied to leave us to act as a ‘reception committee.’
The dense woods and undergrowth prevented the use of artillery.
The corps was relieved about 9 o'clock P. M., but returned at daybreak the next morning and advanced to the river, 600 yards, passing over the dead and badly wounded who had been left there during the night by their retreating troops.
We returned and buried more of their dead than we had men engaged.
The piles of rails afforded us very little protection, and we lost many of our men in killed and wounded.
At Cold Harbor some of the battalion acted with a ‘forlorn-hope’ attacking party, which charged up to and over their breastworks to ascertain if they were occupied or not, while they met with only a few scattering shots from some cavalry, they did not know when they started that any of them would ever return alive.
Too much credit cannot be given them for their daring, as the information obtained was of great value at the moment.