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Doc. 199.-expedition to Gum swamp, N. C.

General Foster's report.

headquarters Tenth army corps, Newbern, N. C., June 2, 1863.
Major-General Halleck, General-in-Chief United States Army, Washington, D. C:
General: Referring to my brief report of May twenty-second, I have the honor to report that, learning from Colonel J. Richter Jones, commanding outposts, that he deemed it possible to capture the enemy's outpost regiments at Gum Swamps, eight miles from Kinston, I ordered Colonel Lee's brigade, consisting of the Fifth, Twenty-fifth, and Forty-sixth Massachusetts regiments, three pieces of Boggs's battery, and a battalion of cavalry, to report to him.

Colonel Jones ordered the Fifth, Twenty-fifth, and Forty-sixth, with the artillery and cavalry, under the command of Colonel Pierson, Fifth Massachusetts, to advance up the railroad and Dover road, to attack the enemy's work in front, while the Fifty-eighth Pennsylvania volunteers, and the Twenty-seventh Massachusetts volunteers, under the immediate command of Colonel Jones, took a path through the swamp, to reach the rear of the enemy's position.

The main column, under Colonel Pierson, met [627] the enemy's pickets at daylight of the twenty-second, and driving them in, commenced an attack on the front. Colonel Jones with his command, owing to the character of the road they had taken, and the men having to go by single file, did not arrive at the desired place until nine A. M. On arriving in the rear of the enemy's position, Colonel Jones deployed such batteries of his command as could be used to advantage, opened fire and advanced. The enemy fired a few desultory volleys, then broke and fled in great confusion, taking to the swamps, and escaping by paths known only to themselves. On hearing the firing of Colonel Jones's command, Colonel Pierson advanced his command and entered the work in front. After securing the prisoners (one hundred and sixty-five) and spoils, demolishing the enemy's works, and resting his men, Colonel Jones made a demonstration and show of advance on Kinston. At dusk the same evening his pickets were driven in, and he found himself attacked by the enemy in force, and with artillery. He, in obedience to orders, at once returned, followed by the enemy, and reached our outpost line without loss.

Colonel Lee's brigade were put on cars in waiting, and returned to their camps.

The enemy, mortified at the success of Colonel Jones, and being strongly reinforced from Goldsboro, reattacked our outpost line on the afternoon of the twenty-third. I sent out a supporting force to Colonel Jones, and the enemy were repulsed at every point, but with a great loss to us and the service, in the death of Colonel Jones, who was shot through the heart as he was leading on two companies of his regiment to dislodge the enemy from a position he had taken up.

By the death of Colonel Jones, a most brave, zealous, and able officer has been lost to the service and this department.

I have the honor to inclose a list of casualties, and a list of prisoners and articles captured.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. G. Foster, Major-General Commanding.

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J. Richter Jones (11)
Pierson (3)
A. L. Lee (2)
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John G. Foster (1)
J. G. Foster (1)
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Boggs (1)
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