SpoTbYLVAMA Courthouse 203
another assault on the enemy's interior line. The Corcoran Legion, Colonel Alathew Murphy, Sixty-ninth Regiment, Xew York National Guard Artillery, commanding, had the day be- fore joined the arm}- and been assigned to my division as the fourth Brigade, and Colonel Thomas S. Smyth, First Delaware Volunteers, and Colonel H. B. McKeen, Eighty-first Pennsylva- nia Volunteers, reported to me for duty, and were assigned to the command of the Third and First Brigades, respectively. The division was formed in two lines, the first line composed of McKeen's and Murphy's Brigades (First and Fourth), in line of battle connecting with Barlow's division on the left, and the Sixth Corps on the right, and supported by the second line. Owen's and Smyth's brigades (Second and Third) formed in the line of battalions en masse. Directly in front of the center of my line was a thick, heavy wood, which prevented any con- siderable portion of the division from being seen from any one point. The troops moved to the assault 'at 4:30 A. M., and gallantly carried some of the enemy's works in their front, when the second line was ordered forward in support. We soon, however, came upon the enemy's main line of works well manned both with infantry and artillery, and protected in front with abatis, from v^-hich the fire was so heavy that the troops made no headway against it and were forced to retire."
Colonel Thomas A. Smyth, of Hancock's Corps, page 449 of Records, says, 'T assumed comm.and of this brigade by order of Brigadier-General Gibbon, May 17, 1864, the army then being in the vicinity of Spotsylvania Courthouse. About 10:30 P. M., I was ordered to mass the brigade in front of the Landrum House, and near the vacated line of the enemy's intrenchments, before daylight, which was accomplished, the brigade being in column of battalions between the Landrum House and the road. Subsequently it was deployed into line by battalions in mass, and I was ordered by Brigadier-General Gibbon to move forward in support of the Corcoran Legion. At daylight the Legion moved forward and I followed at short supporting distance. The first line was repulsed, and my brigade taking a position in a ravine