Number 37. Siege of Petersburg Report of Colonel Augustus Funk, Thirty-ninth New York Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, of operations March 25

   

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in Siege of Petersburg Reports (95)

No. 37. Report of Colonel Augustus Funk, Thirty-ninth New York Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, of operations March 25.1

HDQRS. THIRD Brigadier, FIRST DIV., SECOND ARMY CORPS,
March 27, 1865.

COLONEL: In compliance with instructions, I have the honor to submit the following report of operations of this brigade in the action of the 25th instant:

Bvt. Brigadier General H. J. Madill, having been detailed as corps officer of the day, turned the command of the brigade over to me at about 9 a.m., at which time tents has been struck and our troops were ready to move. About 2 p.m., in obedience to orders from division headquarters, we formed line of battle in front of our works and advanced to a position about twenty rods in rear of the First Brigade of the division as a support to the front line. We remained in this position about 4 p.m., when I received orders to form a line to the left and rear. While executing this order the enemy attacked the front line, which opened with a heavy musketry fire. The new line was formed in good order along the old picket-line. At this juncture the One hundred and eleventh New York Volunteers was detached from the brigade, by order of Brevet Brigadier-Genera Madill, corps officer of the day, and placed in the front line on the extreme left of the division. While this was being done the enemy attacked again, this time striking the Second Brigade of the division. In accordance with orders I moved the remaining five regiments of the brigade rapidly by the right flank, passing the rear of the Second Brigade (which was at this time heavily engaged with the enemy), and formed line on the right of the division, supporting two pieces of artillery engaged in shelling the enemy. At this point the brigade was for some time exposed to a well directed artillery fire of the enemy as well as a fire from the enemy’s sharpshooters posted in a house in our front. Firing ceased at this point about dark.

The One hundred and eleventh New York Volunteers, being on the left of the division, became engaged with the enemy about 6.30 p.m. As this regiment was detached from the brigade during their action, I forward herewith the report of Lieutenant-Colonel Husk, commanding the regiment. It is believed that the rapid and well directed fire of the One hundred and eleventh New York Volunteers on the flank of the enemy in his attack on the Third Division tended to check his advance and give that division an opportunity to form their right and re-establish it on the line from which the enemy had succeeded in dislodging it for a time.

On orders from division headquarters I posted pickets in front of the brigade, connecting with the Sixth Corps on the right and First Brigade pickets on the left, and about 1 a.m. of the 26th moved the brigade back to their old camp.

I cannot speak too highly of the conduct of the brigade, both officers and men, in the various movements we were compelled to make a part of the time moving under the enemy’s fire; and I am confident had we been called upon the engage the enemy directly, the brigade would have met the most sanguine expectations, as the troops were anxious to become engaged.

During the afternoon Second Lieutenant L. Edelman, Thirty-ninth New York Volunteers, being left in camp in charge of the brigade guard,

started, without permission, to join his regiment, and being somewhat intoxicated, passed through our advance lines and has not been heard from since.

I take this opportunity of calling the attention of the general commanding division to the energetic and efficient manner in which the brigade staff performed their duties during the operations of the day.

Respectfully,

A. FUNK,
Colonel Thirty-ninth New York Volunteers.

Lieutenant Colonel R. A. BROWN,
Acting 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 203-204

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