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ent operations. Gen. John B. Gordon of the Confederate Army says that he was sitting on his horse, not much more than a stone's throw from the river, when the charge upon the entrenchments began, and that neither General Early nor any other of the officers standing there expected the brilliant success of the charging force. Their confidence no doubt was based on the fact that the regiments in the fortifications were all veterans of many battles. The North Carolina regiments had been in Pickett's famous charge at Gettysburg, and the Louisiana troops had won the title of the Louisiana Tigers by their previous savage fighting. On the same afternoon the Third Corps, a little farther down the river, had succeeded in forcing a crossing of the river and occupied the earthworks of the enemy with the capture of 400 prisoners. The Fifth Corps, on the right of the Sixth, came up to the river in time to prevent any escape in that direction, and it is worthy of note that the division o
John M. Edwards (search for this): chapter 10
s at the skirmishers who first leaped upon the earthworks was fired almost perpendicularly and did little execution, and before the rifles could be reloaded the main line was upon them. The confusion of it all was described to the writer by Colonel Edwards after the battle. He said that as he with a few men were gathering up the prisoners, and had more of them than of his own men, he came upon a Rebel colonel with his men drawn up in order. Upon his demand for the surrender of the regiment the colonel hesitated until Edwards turned to the motley crowd following him, and shouted, Forward, 121st New York and 5th Maine! Upon this the Rebel surrendered. Too much credit cannot be given to the regiments of the Third Brigade for this victory. It was their magnificent valor in assaulting and capturing the fort and battery on the left that made the rest of the fighting so comparatively easy and bloodless. The loss of the 5th Maine in the affair was ten killed. Eight regimental flags we
Sergeant Joe Rounds (search for this): chapter 10
tain Fish ordered everybody to surrender. Almost at the same time our regiment, and the 5th Maine, came up on our right and just ran over the troops in the pits. We were ordered to go to the bridge and prevent the Johnnies from crossing. We quickly ran down to the river and found the bridge and halted the Rebs as they came up. In the meantime our fellows got around them on the right, and the whole crowd surrendered. Our casualties were Captain Casler, shot through the arm, and Orderly Sergeant Joe Rounds, shot in the arm. Hawley Platt, one of the finest fellows in the regiment, a member of Company D, was killed. Our entire loss was four killed and twenty-two wounded. Major Mather was in command of the regiment and gained the high opinion of the men for his coolness and ability. Colonel Olcott was away, nursing the injuries he had received from falling off his horse some time before. It has always been a mystery to me why those Johnnies did not kill every one of us, and how a
M. R. Casler (search for this): chapter 10
d the fire of the enemy was not very severe. Captain Fish ordered everybody to surrender. Almost at the same time our regiment, and the 5th Maine, came up on our right and just ran over the troops in the pits. We were ordered to go to the bridge and prevent the Johnnies from crossing. We quickly ran down to the river and found the bridge and halted the Rebs as they came up. In the meantime our fellows got around them on the right, and the whole crowd surrendered. Our casualties were Captain Casler, shot through the arm, and Orderly Sergeant Joe Rounds, shot in the arm. Hawley Platt, one of the finest fellows in the regiment, a member of Company D, was killed. Our entire loss was four killed and twenty-two wounded. Major Mather was in command of the regiment and gained the high opinion of the men for his coolness and ability. Colonel Olcott was away, nursing the injuries he had received from falling off his horse some time before. It has always been a mystery to me why those
C. H. Barr (search for this): chapter 10
fine piece of English workmanship, nicely varnished and evidently of recent manufacture. We heard that General French had advanced, and found Mine Run too deep to ford, and that he had given up the attempt, and we went back to our original position. When I got my knapsack from the pile it had been opened, and with other things my diary was gone. I mourned its loss greatly because it had a full account of the events in the regiment. That night I was wakened and detailed to go on picket. Barr and Baldwin were also on the same detail, and we went out and relieved some fellows who were nearly frozen, lying in the skirmish pits without fire, and with very little to eat. As soon as daylight came several shots in our front and bullets flying close to us, gave warning that our foes were alert and knew our exact position. So without fire, all through that cold winter day, watching for an advance, and dreading an order to drive their skirmishes, we lay there and suffered, and hailed with
Lume Baldwin (search for this): chapter 10
of English workmanship, nicely varnished and evidently of recent manufacture. We heard that General French had advanced, and found Mine Run too deep to ford, and that he had given up the attempt, and we went back to our original position. When I got my knapsack from the pile it had been opened, and with other things my diary was gone. I mourned its loss greatly because it had a full account of the events in the regiment. That night I was wakened and detailed to go on picket. Barr and Baldwin were also on the same detail, and we went out and relieved some fellows who were nearly frozen, lying in the skirmish pits without fire, and with very little to eat. As soon as daylight came several shots in our front and bullets flying close to us, gave warning that our foes were alert and knew our exact position. So without fire, all through that cold winter day, watching for an advance, and dreading an order to drive their skirmishes, we lay there and suffered, and hailed with joy the f
Philip R. Woodcock (search for this): chapter 10
ontinuing I joined the company in camp just across the river in the woods. On the next day we went to our old camp. While on the march a general rode by, and someone in the column set up the cry Hardtack, which was taken up all along the line. This angered the general, and attaching blame to our regiment, we were severely reprimanded and given some extra picket duty. On the 23d day of December General Bartlett rode into the camp and was greeted with cheers and made a speech which Comrade Woodcock reports as follows: Soldiers and Comrades in Arms: It is with great pleasure I meet you here tonight. I have, even amid the cares of my office, often thought of the brave and gallant 121st. You have won laurels for yourselves and for our noble Empire State. From the first time you met the enemy's infantry in a fierce engagement and received that fearful baptism of fire and blood, I have ever thought of you as a regiment that can be relied upon. Your heavy loss at that time attes
Henry B. Walker (search for this): chapter 10
ficers, who were transferred to colored regiments and to higher commands. Major Mather and Captain Hall were transferred respectively to the 20th and 43d regiments of U. S. C. regiments as Lieutenant Colonels. Captain Campbell and Lieutenant Bates were made Colonels and assigned to the command of the 23d and 30th U. S. C. regiments. Lieutenant Gary and Sergeant Major Andrew Davidson were made captains in the 23d and 30th. Sergeants W. Ward Rice and Nathaniel Gano were also commissioned for service with the colored troops. These commissions were all granted after an examination by a board appointed for that purpose, and the result was creditable to the regiment and its commanding officers. Colonel Campbell's examination was so creditable that he was made a member of the Board of Examiners. Lieutenants Henry Upton and Henry B. Walker resigned on account of wounds and were honorably discharged. Captain Fish and Lieutenant Morse were detailed to staff duty at brigade headquarters.
lows into the Rapidan about half way between Mine Run and the junction of the two rivers. General Meade retired from Mine Run across the Rapidan, and established winter quarters in the angle made by the rivers, the Sixth Corps being located along Hazel Run. He might easily have retired down the left bank of the Rapidan and occupied the heights behind Fredericksburg, but that movement was forbidden by orders from Washington. On the 27th of February the Sixth Corps was ordered to support Custer's cavalry on a reconnaissance in the direction of Charlottesville. A disagreeable storm made the expedition a very trying one and the four days absence from camp made the return to its comforts very enjoyable. But who of that weary muddy company will ever forget the sight of the innumerable mass of crows that had taken possession of the camp, and were literally covering the ground, in spite of the guard left to protect it from marauders! It was at this camp too that Chaplain Adams of th
Jack Marden (search for this): chapter 10
e 121st on the left, connecting with the line of the Third Brigade. Companies B and D were deployed as skirmishers under command of Captain Fish. Comrade Beckwith gives the best close — up account of the fight thus: We moved forward briskly and soon discovered the Rebel skirmish line. They waited a good while, an age I thought, before they fired on us, and I knew somebody would get hit. Finally they let go and we started on a run after them, and they skedaddled. One fellow waited until Jack Marden, one of our boys, got close to him, and then fired and hit Jack. But the ball, striking something in Jack's pocket, glanced off. The Rebel shouted, I surrender, but Jack shot and wounded him badly. He said that he belonged to the 6th Louisiana, Hays' brigade, Early's Division, Ewell's Corps, and his name was Slidell. The artillery in the fort was now firing rapidly and the cannon shots flew over us and went after our fellows who were coming up behind. The Reb skirmishers kept falling
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