The battle at Fort Gregg. [from the New Orleans Picayune, April 1, 1900.]Louisiana survivors tell the story of the fight.
As there has been some misunderstanding about the battle at Fort Gregg, in front of Petersburg, Va., and doubts as to what Louisiana troops were engaged therein, the matter has been elucidated by reference to a diary which was very carefully kept by a member of the Donaldsonville Artillery, who was one of the occupants of the fort and a participant in the battle. That old veteran showed his diary to one of his comrades who was with him at the time, and the latter, with the data furnished him and the keen recollection which he has of the affair, has written the following statement of facts, which will interest all. In fact, it is a most valuable historical document: On April 2, 1864 (thirty-five years ago to-morrow), Fort Gregg, situated on a hill at an isolatated spot a little in the rear of the Confederate trenches, near Lee's dam (placed by our generals to flood the enemy in the front), about three miles to the right of Petersburg, was captured by a portion of General Ord's Corps. The original garrison of the fort numbered about seventy-five or eighty men, who had been detached from the artillery of General A. P. Hill's Third Army Corps some time after the battle of the Crater, July 30, 1864. On October 13, following, four men from the Donaldsonville Artillery, namely, C. J. Savoy, G. Charlet, O. Delmer and John S. Mioton, were ordered to report to General Walker, an artillery officer of Hill's Corps, the writer being one of the four. We were then sent to Fort Gregg, under the command of Captain Chew, of Maryland, with Frank McElroy, of the 3rd Company, Washington Artillery, as our lieutenant. During our stay in the fort we were drilled as infantry by one or two officers of General Mahone's Brigade. Our winter quarters were just back of the fort—that portion being protected by a stockade—the front and sides being an earthwork, with a good sized ditch in front. There was no artillery in the fort at that time, but in constructing it provisions had been made for four guns. Early on that memorable Sunday morning, April 2, 1864, Generals