Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 04.djvu/36
Southern Historical Society Papers.
It was now that a little detachment was ordered to occupy Battery Gregg. It was made up of two pieces of artillery, and in all about 200 men, the infantry being composed of detachments from Thomas', Lane's and Harris' brigades; the number from Thomas' brigade, as now remembered, being less than that from either of the other two. The most of Harris' brigade was ordered to Battery "Whitworth. In this were three pieces of artillery. Gen. Harris was in command at "Whitworth. At the time the detachments were placed in Gregg I did not know who was the ranking officer; did not regard it of much consequence, as I had determined to remain either in it or near it. I was in Gregg about 10 minutes. Saw that it had as many men as could fire conveniently. Extra ammunition was supplied, and the little detachments ordered to hold these two batteries to the last. Battery Gregg was a detached lunette, with a ditch eight or ten feet deep, about the same width, and the parapet of corresponding height and thickness. The guns were in barbette; its gorge was closed with palisades, and these with loop-holes, I believe. It was the intention to have connected these two batteries with a rifle trench, and earth had been excavated for a distance of thirty yards, commencing at the right end of the palisading of Gregg. The connection was never made; but it was by means of the parapet of this short, unfinished trench, that the enemy reached the crest of Battery Gregg. As the enemy's attacking forces advanced, a few guns on the main lines at Battery 45, the two guns in Gregg, and the three in Whitworth delivered a rapid fire. The enemy's battery in the open field beyond Old Town creek was in the meantime directing a brisk and well-directed fire upon Gregg and Whitworth. The enemy's front line coming within good range, the musketry from the two little garrisons began, and with decided effect, to be easily seen. This inspired with increased courage our men, greatly diminished in numbers. The enemy drew nearer, but close in front of Whitworth were the cabins of a bri--
- Washington Artillery I believe; of what battery do not remember.