70. the Chicamacomico engagement.
the following are the official reports of the engagement near Hatteras Inlet:
New York Herald narrative.
Statement of an escaped Indianian.
The following narrative is given by private Haver
, Company H, of Col. Brown
's regiment, who was captured by the rebels, but finally escaped:
He says that privates Bennet
, and himself were busily engaged destroying whatever they could, to prevent the enemy from getting any plunder, but remained rather too long, and were captured by the Georgians.
was shot dead in his attempt to escape.
were tied and put under charge of Capt. Wilson
, of the Georgia Seventh.
Toward sundown, Captain
W. and several other officers were cooking and eating some ducks they had captured, or rather stolen from the poor people residing there; and being himself very hungry, he ventured to ask them if they would give him some after they were done.
One of the party looked at him, calling him “a damned black republican son of a b — h,” and said, “we don't eat with niggers.”
A little before daylight the following morning he succeeded in getting his hands clear, then released his companion White
, and drew a small revolver that had remained secreted between his two shirts when he was disarmed, and shot Capt
W., and then they both fled into a piece of marsh, or bog, that was a short distance off. They were pursued, but unsuccessfully; they buried themselves in the soft bog, with their heads only above the surface and concealed by the thick rushes.
Several times the feet of their pursuers were heard rustling among the rushes and high grass, causing their hearts to beat with increased rapidity; for, had they been caught, they would have been shot at once.
Fortunately for them the Monticello
commenced firing her shells into the enemy, which gave them something else to do beside hunting up their escaped prisoners.
says that notwithstanding the very uncomfortable position they were in, he could not help but laugh to see the scattering made among them by the explosion of the shells.
He says that Colonel Bartow
was knocked off his horse by the bursting of a shell, and he did not see him again — no doubt he was killed — and also says the shrieking and lamentations of the rebels were heart-rending.
Some would exclaim: “My God, we will all be killed,” and one close by him, as a shell exploded, exclaimed: “Oh!
My God, there's George; he is killed.”
Such were the scenes that were passing around them, till, seeing a favorable opportunity, they left their place of concealment and pushed for the beach, hoping to be taken off by the Monticello
They were pursued, but for only a short distance.
As soon as they reached the beach Capt. Braine
sent a boat for them, although the surf was very heavy at the time.
They were so eager to get among their friends, that, before the boat was near enough to take them, they both plunged into the surf, and, while the boat was picking Haver
out of the water, Charles White
Although a good swimmer, he was so exhausted for want of food, and by the exertions put forth to gain his liberty, that he sank, to rise no more, which was rather a hard fate to meet after succeeding so well in freeing himself from the enemy.
I must close this, to send by the Susquehanna
, as she is about leaving for Hampton Roads
Norfolk day Book account:
, of the Craville Guards
, Third Georgia regiment, gives us the following statement:
left Camp Georgia, Roanoke Island
, on Thursday, midnight, and arrived at Chicamacomico
on Friday, October 4th. Col. Wright
made the attack on the Federals
at nine o'clock in the morning, by firing shell from two ten-pound howitzers from on board the transport Cotton Plant
, when about one mile from the shore.
As soon as the colonel opened fire, they began to retreat.
The howitzers were commanded by Lieutenant
J. R Sturgis
, with forty men. When the colonel saw they were about to retreat, he embarked the guns of his three companies on board of a flat-boat, for the purpose of effecting a landing and putting chase after them.
Company H, commanded by Capt. Nesmit
, Company E, commanded by Captain Griffin
, and Company N, commanded by Captain Jones
, were landed immediately, leaving the remaining portion of the Third Georgia regiment, and the North Carolina regiment, some four or five miles in the rear, on board the other vessels of the fleet.
The three companies that landed consisted of two hundred and ten men, while the enemy, from their muster-rolls, were about one thousand two hundred strong.
When the colonel landed, he had signalled the remaining portion of the Georgia
Third to advance, and, when near shore, they commenced disembarking in their flat-boats.
took but one of his howitzers ashore with him, leaving the other on board the Cotton Plant
, under command of Captain Carrsville
, to cover his landing.
After the three companies had effected a safe landing, the other howitzer was brought on shore, and they then commenced the pursuit of the flying Yankees
, and were joined by each company of the remaining portion of the Georgia
regiment as fast as they effected a landing.
The two howitzers and ammunition were drawn through the deep sand by the men, during the entire pursuit of twenty-five miles, having in the mean time encamped on Friday night at Kinnykeet, a distance of eighteen miles from the starting-point.
The pursuit was continued early next morning, to within one mile of the Hatteras Light-house
When about six miles from the starting-place, Col. Wright
, being on horseback, and considerably in advance of his command, overtook a party of thirteen Yankees, together with their adjutant.
He made a gallant charge on them, when the adjutant shot his horse, and commenced loading again, when the colonel grabbed up a small Yankee, and presented him as a breastwork to ward off the adjutant's fire.
With this he advanced on the adjutant with his repeater, and captured four, including the adjutant.
As our forces continued to advance, they commenced taking prisoners — in all about forty--and killed seven or eight of the flying Hessians
One of the North Carolina companies landed at the same time as the Georgians, and joined in the pursuit with great bravery, while the other portion of the North Carolina regiment were ordered to hasten to the light-house, just below Kinnykeet, to intercept the retreat of the Federalists.
Kinnykeet is eight miles below the light-house, toward Chicamacomico
They were unable to land, owing to the shoal water, though they did every thing they could to acccomplish that object.
They got their guns on board the flat and shoved off, but got aground, and even waded in till they found themselves again getting into deep water.
They sent a small boat to take the soundings, but found it impossible to land, owing to the peculiar formation of the flats.
continued in pursuit till he found the North Carolina regiment, under Col. Shaw
, unable to land, and ascertaining that the Yankees
had been reinforced by nine hundred men from Hatteras
, he withdrew his forces to the position he had occupied the night before.
After getting back to this position, the Federal
took up a position about half a mile from shore, and opened fire on them by broadsiders, with 11-inch shell, and continued to shell them for five hours, without injury to any one except a slight bruise on one man's leg, who fell down in endeavoring to dodge a ball which rolled over his leg, and a slight scratch on another's face from the explosion of a shell.
During the shelling a great portion of the Georgia
forces retired back to the enemy's vacated camp, and finally the balance succeeded in embarking on board our steamers, which had now got in the neighborhood.
They embarked their two howitzers with them, on board the Curlew
, from that point.
The Cotton Plant, under orders from Corn.
, now ran up the Chicamacomico, and took on board the entire forces which had got back to that point, together with the enemy's entire camp equipage, consisting of three hundred tents, carriage boxes, haversacks, canteens, cooking utensils, provisions, etc., together with their private wardrobe, which they were in too great haste to take with them.
The entire expedition then returned to Roanoke Island
, where they arrived on Sunday night at twelve o'clock.
The Day Book
gives the following particulars:
The Twentieth Indiana regiment was drawn up on shore, preparatory to giving our forces battle, probably to frighten them off; but seeing the determined action of our forces toward landing, the cowardly whelps took to their heels down toward Hatteras
, leaving every thing, even their private wardrobes, papers, etc. This example of gallantry was set them
by their colonel, who put spurs to his horse, and was the swiftest of the whole pack.
Our entire fleet, except the Cotton Plant
, then moved their position to Hatteras Light-house, in order to intercept the retreat of the Yankees
; but it coming up dark before they could commence landing, and through want of sufficient boats to make an expeditious landing, the Yankees
made their escape to the fort at Hatteras
The Georgia troops, from the Cotton Plant
, having effected a landing, put out down the beach in pursuit of the flying Yankees
; but they, being entirely too fleet of foot for them, escaped to Hatteras Light-house, where they were reinforced.
At the time of the retreat of the Yankees
, had it been high tide, they would not have escaped, as the sand was of such a nature as to utterly preclude the possibility of running, save below the high-water mark.
Our men had to drag their field-howitzers through this sand twelve miles--that is from Chicamacomico
to Hatteras Light; and during the chase, one member of the Georgia
regiment died from exhaustion in pursuing the Yankees
His remains were brought to Norfolk
by the Junaluska.
of the Indiana
regiment shot the horse of Col. Wright
of the Georgia
regiment from under him, which appeared to be the only evidence of bravery evinced by the whole party.
captured this man, and for his bravery treated him very courteously.