Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 13.djvu/201

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

200 Southern Historical Society Papers.

advance forward. The order was obeyed by the regiment with promptness and alacrity, and the charge upon the hill and battery executed courageously and successfully. In the space of fifteen minutes the hill was carried, and three lo-pound Parrott guns cap- tured. They were brought off 'that night, and the next day turned against the enemy in that terrible artillery fight. Some twenty-five prisoners were captured and sent to the rear, some of whom aided our wounded in getting to the hospital. Three regiments, viz. : the Ninety-ninth Pennsylvania, One Hundred and Twenty-sixth New York, and Fourth Maine, were represented in the person of the pris- oners. After the enemy was driven from the hill, they poured upon us a terrific and incessant fire from the steep mountain side directly to our front, their advance line of infantry being distant about five hundred yards, and pretty well protected by large rocks and stones heaped together. About six o'clock a regiment was moved to get to our left flank. A shot from Private John F. Jordan, of Company "G," unhorsed the officer leading it, when their ranks were broken, and they retreated in wild disorder and confusion, my regiment add- ing no little to their panic by opening a telling volley into their scat- tered ranks. No other advance was attempted by them upon the hill we occupied while we held it.

Our loss in the charge was very heavy. I herewith transmit a list of the casualties: Colonel John A. Jones, commanding, was killed at the post of duty, instantly, by a fragment of shell, when nearly half way up the hill, and but a moment before it was carried. He was an excellent officer and devoted patriot, and a braver spirit never fought beneath a flag. His loss will long be felt in this command. Lieu- tenant F. McCrimmon, company " H," was killed just as the regi- ment gained the crest, falling literally " in the arms of victory." Captains A. B. Ross, of company "A," and H. C. Mitchell, of com- pany "B;" Lieutenants P. G. Hatchett and E. J. Morgan, of com- pany "E," were wounded, the three first named severely, the last slightly.

Shortly after nightfall the firing ceased the enemy employing himself in building breastworks on the mountain side in our front. By the dawn of the following day he had constructed in plain view three lines of breastworks, which could not have been mounted with- out the use of scaling ladders. A fourth line, not so distinctly visible, did not appear to be so high or strong.

The Twentieth held the hill until near seven o'clock P. M. on the 3d under a dangerous but desultory fire of the enemy, mainly in-