Number 118. Siege of Petersburg Report of Colonel Oliver Edwards, Thirty-seventh Massachusetts Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, of operations March 25

   

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in Siege of Petersburg Reports (95)

No. 118. Report of Colonel Oliver Edwards, Thirty-seventh Massachusetts Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, of operations March 25.1

HDQRS. THIRD Brigadier, FIRST DIV., SIXTH ARMY CORPS,
March 26, 1865.

MAJOR: I have the honor to return the following report of yesterday’s (March 25) movements:

At 7 a.m. I received orders from the general commanding the division to get under arms, and move at once to support a part of the Ninth Corps on our right, whose lines had been broken by the enemy. I accordingly moved at once, marching four miles to our right, halting by your orders. I remained there about two hours, when I received orders from you to return to camp. Before reaching camp I received orders from you to go on and mass between Forts Wadsworth and Fisher, which we did, remaining there several hours, when I received orders from you to move to the left and to cover the right of the Second Brigade in an attack upon the enemy’s skirmish works. Finding the ground in front of Hamblin’s right a bad swamp, covered with heavy underbrush, entirely impassable for a line of battle, I moved by the left flank in two lines, covering Hamblin’s right. On the inner edge of the swamp we found the enemy on Hamblin’s flank, and quickly drove them out, capturing about 100 prisoners. I then changed front forward on my left regiments, continuing the line of the Second Brigade, using the Thirty-seventh Massachusetts to cover the right. In this position the enemy soon moved to my right and rear, which obliged me to refuse my right nearly at a right angle to Hamblin, with a strong skirmish line of six companies of the Thirty-seventh Massachusetts Volunteers and four companies of the Fifth Wisconsin Volunteers, under Lieutenant-Colonel Bull, Fifth Wisconsin Volunteers. The enemy attacked with a double skirmish line, but were handsomely repulsed by our skirmishers. After dark orders were received from you to intrench our picket-line, which was accomplished by 12.30 a.m., when the brigade returned to camp, leaving 250 men on the picket-line.

The brigade behaved entirely to my satisfaction, and I would particularly mention the Fifth Wisconsin Volunteers, Colonel T. S. Allen, and

the Thirty-seventh Massachusetts Volunteers, Major M. W. Tyler commanding; also the members of my staff, to whom I am indebted for every aid and assistance.

I herewith transmit a nominal list of the killed, wounded, and missing of my command.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

O. EDWARDS,
Colonel, Commanding.

Major GEORGE CLENDENIN, Jr.,
Assistant Adjutant-General.

HDQRS. THIRD Brigadier, FIRST DIV., SIXTH ARMY CORPS,
March 26, 1865.

MAJOR: In compliance with circular of this date from division headquarters, I have the honor to forward the following numerical report of casualties in this command in the engagement of the 25th:

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

O. EDWARDS,
Colonel, Commanding.

Major GEORGE CLENDENIN, JR.,
Assistant Adjutant-General.

Source:

  1. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Volume XLVI, Part 1 (Serial Number 95), pages 301-302

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