The battles on the Peninsula.statements of eye-witnesses — graphic Narratives — Lists of the casualties, &c.
A gentleman who witnessed the fight near Williamsburg on Monday informs us that our force engaged amounted to six or eight thousand men. The battle lasted nine hours. The First Virginia regiment captured a battery of eight guns, and two colors, from the enemy. There has been gone dispute in regard to which regiment performed this gallant act; but we learn that the matter has been decided in favor of the First by the General commanding the brigade to which it is attached. The number of casualties in killed and wounded in General A. P. Hill's brigade have been ascertained as follows: 1st regiment, 46; 7th regiment, 90; 11th regiment, 131; 17th regiment, 71; total, 338. Some erroneous statements have been published in connection with this battles which we are now enabled to correct.--Gen. Early was not mortally wounded; his injuries are severe, but it is believed he will soon recover and be able to take the field again, Col. Williams, of the First Virginia, received a very severe wound, and is now in the hands of the enemy. Major Palmer, of the same regiment, who was reported killed, received only a slight wound in the arm, and remained on the field until the close of the engagement. Neither Col. Kemper nor Col. Corse, both of whom were reported wounded, received any injury, though they exposed themselves in a daring manner through out the day. The rumor that General Anderson was killed probably arose from the death of his brother, who fell in the battle. The General was not injured. We hear that the loss on our side, to killed, wounded, and missing, is estimated at 600. The loss of the enemy can only be conjectured, though it was unquestionably much heavier than ours. We are indebted to a gentleman who participated in the fight on Sunday, near Williamsburg, for the following narrative.
Sunday's engagementThe greater part of the forces falling back from the ‘"Yorktown Line"’ of defence having nailed for rest, in the open ground back of Williamsburg, gave the Yankee advance an opportunity of coming up with the rear guard, consisting of Gen. Sims's Georgia and Gen. Griffin's Mississippi brigades, to which was attached Manly's North Carolina battery. The enemy did not appear in any force from under their cover of woods until one rear guard had either open ground and re and were marching through Williamsburg at which time a courier brought word to Gen. McLaws that they were deploying in force to the right an left of Fort McGruder (which our forces had just left ) and that they had planted a battery of rifled guns immediately to the front of the redoubt, and only distant 700 yards--The rear guard was immediately ordered ‘"about, face — double quick, march"’ Sanly's battery was ordered to advance and seize Fort McGruder before the Yankees secured it. Then commenced a race — artillery, cavalry, infantry, had to run the ‘"gunnel"’ of the rifle battery fire for one and a half miles to seize a work from whom the Yankees were only distant a quarter of a mile; but our forces did it nobly Captain Manly brought his battery into action in splendid style, halted and fired five rounds to delay the enemy's advance and give our infantry time to come up, and then limbered up his guns and made a dash for the redoubt, which he succeeded in entering just in advance of the Yankee force on the right. From this point the battery did some of the finest practice that we have heard of in the record of any of our ‘"artillery duels,"’ firing 180 shots in 20 minutes dismounting two pieces of the rifle battery, killing all the horses at two more pieces and four caissons, of which our cavalry taking advantage made a glorious charge on the infantry and cavalry supporting the battery, and cutting down all who yet remained; and held the ground until the office commanding the Richmond Howitzer Battery, Capt. McCarthy, (having detached some of the horses from his pieces,) galloped forward, and hitching on to the force captured guns and four caissons brought them off in the face of the enemy, and gallantly offered them to Capt. Meanly as the trophies gained by the flue service of his pieces. Thus, in forty minutes our glorious fellows had marched nearly two miles, captured three pieces, four caissons, twelve horses, and seven prisoners. The killed and wounded of the enemy could not have been short of one hundred men. Gen. Johnston was present during the fight, and appeared to enjoy it exceedingly. When the rear guard was ordered to ‘"about face,"’ such a cheer went up from then, as the good folks of Williamsburg will long remember. It is absurd to talk of whipping men who, after marching eighteen hours without rest or food, and heavily packed, will, at a chance of a fight, crop their knapsacks and with a soul-stirring cheer, seize their muskets and run a race for nearly two miles to meet the enemy.
Another account.The following graphic account of the recent exciting events near Williamsburg is furnished to the Dispatch by a gentleman who took part in the engagement on Monday, the 8th inst. Friday night, May 2d, General A. P. Hill's brigade, of Longstreet's division, left the trenches at Wynne's Mill, in Warwick county, and returned to their place of bivouac, about two miles further North, int he direction of Lebanon church. There they were halted for the night, and on Saturday afternoon, about 4 o'clock, the order was given to march, and the retreat of the entire army began in the direction of Williamsburg. On arriving at Lebanon church, a little after dark, the column was halted, and, having stacked arms, they awaited the arrival of those who were the last to abandon the breastworks to the enemy. Here they remained until two o'clock on Sunday morning, when the line of march was again resumed for Williamsburg, where the greater portion of Longstreet's command arrived about meridian, and bivouacked in a field half a mile northwest of the town. That evening a skirmish with the enemy, in which a portion of Stuart's cavalry were successfully engaged, warned them that the invaders were close at hand, and that a more serious conflict was imminent. About sunrise on Monday morning firing was heard below the town, in the direction of our pickets, who were driven in by the enemy, and a heavy body, of skirmishers being then thrown out by both armies, the booming of cannon, followed by the straggling fire of small arms, steadily increasing in volume and rapidity, told that the battle had begun. Gen. A. P. Hill's brigade, consisting of the 1st, 11th, 17th, and 7th Virginia regiments, were promptly formed and marched in the direction of the uring. A cold, steady rain was falling, and the roads were in the most deplorable condition; but, though was to the skin, and not rested from the fatigue of watching and marching which they had recently undergone, the men were in the very best of spirits, and anxious to ‘"fight and have done with it,"’ as though the result were a foregone conclusion. As they entered the town, and the firing below became more distinct and rapid, their quick march' was increased to a double-quick; ‘"off with all luggage, boys,"’ was the word, and knapsacks and blankets (which, singular to say, they had not been told to leave behind) were torn off and thrown into the porches, along the street, and on the men posted for the open field, where the white sulphurous smoke had begun to form a canopy, and cannon balls were seen plowing up the ground in their murderous career from a battery which the enemy had planted in the main road, about half a mile beyond, where he woods skirted the field just below the town. Arriving upon the edge of a road that crossed the field at right angles with the main road, they halted, and, forming into close column, awaited orders. The cannon were meantime briskly playing from the enemy's battery, which were replied to by two guns from Fort McGruder, a redoubt commanding the road from Lebanon Church to Williamsburg. Two other batteries, upon the right and left of this redoubt, were also playing upon the enemy with two guns each; but the brunt of the battle was entirely sustained by infantry, the locality and the condition of the roads rendering it almost impossible to use artillery Meanwhile the filing of musketry and subsided and almost entirely ceased; but is soon began again, gradually swelling until the woods echoed underling with one sulten roar — a ceaseless monotone that told of death and carnage. The work of our men was now plain before them. The order ‘"load as will"’ was given, and with fixed bayonets, steady pulse, and rapid steps, the defenders of Virginia's sacred soil moved through mud, along ravine, and up hill, to fate and beat the roe. The Yankee hirelings were thick in those woods as leaves in Valembross, and like those leaves, before the fiery breath of the tempest, they were swept away. Change their position as they might, increase their numbers as they would, our men moved upon them like a resistless tide, and bore them back wherever they were met. Charge after charge was made upon them, and they always fled. Our men never gave back except in obedience to orders. Terrible evidences of the destructiveness of their fire were to be seen at every turn of the eye. The dead Federals strewed the woods and fields, and the cries and groans of the wounded whom they had deserted appealed strongly from justice to mercy. There was very little maneuvering. Our men simply met the Yankees and drove them steadily back about two miles from their position. The fighting was chiefly in a dense wood immediately upon the right of them in road. A large quantity of fallen timber, and the tangled nature of the undergrowth greatly impeded the movement of the troops, and prevented a clear view of the enemy. When not seen, however, the flashing of their volleys indicated their presence, and guided by their murderous fire our men moved steadily and unflinchingly upon them, and rented them from their cover to fly like sheep. At no time during that dreadful day did the of musketry cease; but from 10 o'clock until night the firing flied the air with one unbroken roar. This was the greeting that awaited each new regiment that came into the fray, and if the internal dia and the venomous hissings of the leaden hail had sent the warm blood rushing back to every heart, it would have been but little cause for shame, for it seemed it deed like entering the very valley of the shadow of death — But to the eternal glory of our men be it said that not one, from the humblest private to the highest in command, seemed else than every inch a here. There was no hurry, no excitement, no confusion. Led by their officers on foot,--he field and staff of each regiment having all dismounted and left their horses in the rear — they moved quietly and steadily forward. A good deal of ammunition was in a damaged condition, owing to the continual rain, and many of the men whose guns would not discharge, threw them away and took the weapons and superior cartridges and caps of the dead Yankees that lay around — It would be difficult to mention the performance of any regiment without making an invidious distinction. All behaved most gallantly. All of Longstreet's division, a portion of Stuart's cavalry and six pieces of artillery, stationed in the redoubts, are all that are known by the writer as engaged in the fight. There were several regiments drawn up in the field in rear of the scene of action as a reserve. They were not, however, called upon the aid in the action. Having driven the Yankees back about two miles, captured eight pieces of artillery, several colors, a numbers, of fine horses, and about 900 prisoners, our forces were withdrawn and marched to Williamsburg, almost entirely exhausted, wet to the skin, hungry, and altogether as miserable in body as men could possibly be. About 2 o'clock the next morning the army again commenced their retreat towards Richmond, closely followed by the Funerals, who entered Williamsburg about an hour after the Confederate forces left it four wounded who were unable to walk fel in to the hands of the enemy — a fact greatly to be cer had unavailable under the circumstances. The scenes of parting were painful in the extreme.
Lieutenant Colonel York of the Fourteenth Louisiana regiment.This gallant and chivalrous Louisianian was severely wounded in the engagement at Williamsburg on Monday last, and is now receiving medical treatment at the College in this city. The Colonel was hit by a Minnie ball immediately over the heart. The ball glanced from having struck a heavy military button, ranged over the ride, coming out on the left since, again penetrating the arm, going through its fleshy part. The wounds, though of a very severe character, we are led to believe, from the representations of his physicians, will soon deal. Louisiana feels a just degree of pride in this gallant young officer, as the represents well its chivalry, and one of her peculiar institutions — his cotton interest being very large. In conversation with him, he speaks of the engagement as being of a most obstinate character — our troops evincing the unmost coolness and bravery. His regiment, he says, fought like veterans, which is evidenced be the result, having lost in killed and wounded over eighty out of six hundred and fifty engaged. Of Col Jones, his commander, though quite sick, he says he justified his fitness for his position in the inspiration of his men, his coolness, and fearless exposure of person. Col. York expresses much feeling and regret for the death of Lieut. Col. Erby, of the 8th Alabama. This gallant man was killed at the head of his regiment leading a charge — The 8th Alabama suffered great loss and won additional honors, which will ever perpetuate the courage and chivalry of the soldiery of that noble State. Of Brigadier-General Roger A. Pryor, who commanded the brigade of which the 14th Louisiana regiment is a part, Col. York speaks in terms of great commendation; says that his action upon the field has demonstrated the wisdom and sagacity which prompted his appointment, not only for this, but for any other position that requires prudence, skill and undaunted courage, to secure successful movements upon the battle-field. Louisiana.
A youthful hero.
Among the many youthful heroes who fell dying or wounded, at the battle of Williamsburg on Monday last, was John Tyler Waller, the same who at Leesburg received the approbation of Gen. Evans for his heroic conduct.
Young Waller, (14 years of age,) belonged to the gallant ‘"Home Guard"’ of Lynchburg, (Captain Otey,) whose company was in the thickest of the fight during the entire period of action.
When met by his father, who was deeply distressed, he remarked, ‘" Father, I feel defending my dear mother's grace."’ God grant him recovery from his wounds, and that his brilliant promise may be fulfilled, to the discharge of even more important duties to his country.
A Friends who Saw Him.
[for the Richmond Dispatch]
Lists of casualties.
Seventh Virginia regiment.
- Killed--Private Jas L' Clone
- Wounded--Lieut F. V. Foy, arm and breast. Privates Jno W. Price, in the hand; W P Carpenter, slightly; Wm Warren, face.
- Wounded--Privates Wm. Nicholson, mortally in the breast; J. W. Brown, slightly in the back.
- Wounded--Capt. P. S. Ashby, slightly in the head; Lieut J. W. Pannill, seriously in the leg. Privates John Bickers, slightly in the back; Wm. J. Cook, slightly in the head; Wm. A. Backsley, slightly in the arm; Henry Mitchell, seriously in the hand; Geo Morris. slightly in the face; A. W. Shadrack, slightly in the arm.
- Killed--Private W. H. Stafford.
- Wounded--Sergeant J. Hare, severely in the hand. Privates J. W. East, slightly on arm; Jno H. Hale, slightly in the leg; Geo Knoits, mortally in abdomen; A Meadows, slightly in arm; Jno Meadows, severely in the face; A J Thompson, severely in the face; J H Gardner, severely in the shoulder; E. V. Yager, severely in the hand; D Sanner, slightly in the arm; W J Wilburn, slightly in arm.
- Killed--Sergeants J. H. Finks and W. H Denning.
- Wounded--Privates T. McDade, mortally in side; B F Warson, severely in fee; W H Cole. slightly in leg; J A Stuart severely in head.
- Killed — Private amuse Oliver.
- Wounded--Capt. Finke Caverton, severely in leg; Sergt J. M. Mayers, slightly in arm; Corp'l B Haney, slightly in hand; Corp'l G B Duff, slightly in head. Privates A. Bickers, severely in leg and breast; J. R Douglass, severely in thigh and back; S. A. Fates, slightly in arm; Wm. Houseworth, slightly in foot and back; Jas Morris, in arm; B Oliver, in side; Jas Sims, in face; W J Southerds, in arm; W J Sheler, in hand; J T Miller, mortally in head; E. A. Wood, slightly in side.
- Wounded Sergts R. W. Jenkins, slightly in shoulder; P. R. Morris, severely in hand; Corporals C. C. Sparks, slightly in breasts; S. S. Henshaw, slightly in face; Private J. E. Brown severely inform.
- Killed — Lieut A M Ewell and Private Lewis Schmidt.
- Wounded--Privates Frank Carter, severely in leg; Wm. P Phillipe; slightly in breast; J Gant, slightly in face.
- Killed--Corporal Brown.
- Wounded--Lieut Jno E Wyant, slightly in hand; Lieut W. A. Brown, mortally in abdomen; Lieut W. A. Brown, mortally in abdomen; Lieut W. P Walters, mortally in abdomen; Private — Thurston, slightly in head.
- Wounded--Lieut J. M. Rosser, severely in leg; Sergt G H Racer, severely in hand; Sergt J. W. Levell, slightly in head; Sergt R H Weaver, slightly in head. Privates J. W. Austin, severs in head; J D Lucas, severely in thigh; W H Smith, severely in shoulder; C L Close, slightly in head; S W Greyson, in head; J T Groome, in foot; J W Harlow, in head and thigh.
|Otherwise wounded, as far as yet heard from||63|
Elevenths Virginia regiment.The following is a list of the killed and wounded in the 11th Regiment Virginia Volunteers, First Brigade: Col. Sam Garland, flesh wound in arm; Adjutant J. Lawrence Meem, slightly in leg.
- Killed — W. H. Lawrence, John H. Slagle, J. R. Raine, and S. P. Stuart.
- Wounded-- First Sergeant J. C. Thurmen in thigh; Lieutenant P. B. Akers, in hand; Thos. S. Rec or, mortally; J. S. Delano hand; G. F. Weightman wrist; J. H. Tumer, body; J. F. Gooldy, mortally; Lewis G. Havbrook. face; H T Cheatham, breast; H. S. Elam, mortally; J. M. Conley, slightly; E. S. Dinguid, accidentally injured.
- Missing — W. J. Isaacs.
Company A., rifle Grays Captain Mitchell.
- Killed — John T. Davis, George E. Mason, and John D. Richardson.
- Wounded — P. L. Thurmond, mortally; A Sandifer, slightly; D P Dews, in hand; W H Williamson, leg; W S Simmons, thigh, slightly.
- Missing — James T Little.
Company B. Southern Guard, Captain Horton.
- Killed — Henry A Faris, David C Layne and Griffle Barley.
- Wounded-- First Sergeant Thomas Cooke, slightly; G Delweedy, in thigh; S. P. Tweedy in thigh; F B Tweedy, in hand; Jos E. Rice, in leg; W. B. Williams, in shoulder and severe; B. Phillips, in leg; Wm Wilson, mortally; Moore Jennings, leg; Chas Blakenship, shoulder and both arms; H. W. Clay, mortally; H. A Roberts, w is G. D. Rosser, wrist; W C Rosser, shoulder and both arms; W. L. Rector, mortally; W. J. Monroe, shoulder; Henry O Elliott, foot; Chap Jones, slightly; Chas B Clement, head; Peyton Edds both thighs.
- The missing not reported.
Company C., Clifton Greye, Captain Clement.
- Killed — Jno K. Murray, Jno W Carper, and Jos Kesster.
- Wounded--First Lieut. John T James, shot in thigh; 2d Lieut. Jno H. Camper, shot in knee; R arper, thigh; Jos W. F eig slightly; G. W. Hamilton, hand; M. W. Hitchcock, side, slight; G. W. Loop, thigh; Nathan Leman, wrist, J Hurray, hand; W. H. in lair, side, slight; James M. Weeks, thigh; Jacob Fluke, leg.
- Missing — George Johnson.
Company D., Fincastle rifles, Capt. D. G. Houston.
- Killed — None.
- Wounded--1st Lieut W. R. Abbott, in head, slightly; L P Neville, wrest; Thos Marshall, face; James Katen, head;--Gilbert, face.
Company E. Lynchburg rifle, Capt. Ward.
- Killed — Fred Shumaner, Wm. Keister, and J. G. Crews
- Wounded — C. H. Jones, severely in body; John Wygall, in shoulder; H. Farrish, in thigh; D C Hughes, neck; Boss Rocke, head; Fleming Roop, shoulder, slightly; J. E. T. Craig, shoulder; James Murdock, foot; B. R. Long, both hands.
Company F, Preston Guards, Capt. Fowlkee.
- Killed — None.
- Wounded-- 1st Sergeant Jas. Franklin, jr, in arm, severely; Ed. A. Akers, shoulder slightly; M. M. Leckie, mortally; S. L. Moorman, hand; Vae Taliaferro, arm; Samuel Nowlin, head; A. W. Nowlin, thigh; Corp Jno Sumpter, arm; Jno Waller, shoulder, dangerously; Jno P. Goggin, hand; G. T Launder, twice in leg; Willey Campbell, in mouth.
Company G. Home Guard, Capt. Otey.
- Killed — William M. Barks and James Reynolds.
- Wounded--Sergeant D. C. Wright, in arm; Jno Boland, wrist; Jno R. Davis, slightly; Jno Dar iel slightly.
Company H., Jeff Davis Guard, 1st Lt. Herd.
- Killed--Sergeant R. F. Humphreys, and H P cobs
- Wounded--Corporal S. A. Lee, in shoulder; Jas W. Barton, in breast, severely; Wm. Gutheridge, in face; Jas Glasseil, in arm; Jas G. Kemper, in thigh; John James, in leg.
Company I, Rough and ready rifles, Capt. Jones.
- Killed--First Lieut Jas W. Martin, Richard B. Parker, and Ro Hudson.
- Wounded--Serg. R. C. Campbell, in arm; Corporal J. M. Morrison, in face; Corporal J. T. Hurdy, in arm slightly; Wm. Ferguson, in arm; Wm H. Hardy, to arm; Houston Walkup, in hand and breast; John Groman, in hand and breast; Samuel Schindell, in knee; John McCulloch mortally; Benj Falls, slightly; Jas Powell, in thigh.
- Missing — Jas R. Markham.
Company K, Valley Ranger, Capt. A. M. Houston.
Recapitulation.Field and Staff — Killed, none; wounded, 2.
- Company A--killed; 4; wounded, 13; missing, 1.
- Company B--killed 3; wounded, 6.
- Company D--killed, 5; wounded, 13; missing, 1.
- Company E--wounded, 5.
- Company F--killed 3; wounded, 10.
- Company G--wounded, 12.
- Company H--killed 3, wounded, 4.
- Company I--killed, 2; wounded, 6; missing, 1.
- Company K--killed, 3; wounded, 11; missing, 1.