Editor’s Note: This article was transcribed by Bryce Suderow and is included in a collection of articles from the Macon Telegraph. His transcription of this article is published here with his written permission.
For the Daily Telegraph
Petersburg, VA., June 27, 1864
Below are the casualties of the 10th Georgia Battalion, since the 14th of May:
On the 2d of June, we had the misfortune to lose our excellent commander, Major John E. Rylander. He was struck by a stray ball from the enemy’s skirmishers, as the brigade, (Wright’s) was getting into position about dusk and died in some half an hour afterwards. The bullet entered behind the right ear and passed entirely through the back of the head. Thus fell one of our best soldiers and most efficient officers, in the active discharge of his duties as commander of the 10th Georgia Battalion, which he had led for over two years, with credit to himself and advantage to the cause of Southern independence. One of the saddest features of this bloody war is that so many of our useful, well educated men are falling, while the enemy expose to slaughter mostly their lowest and worst class of men. Major Rylander’s loss is deeply deplored by his command and the brief acquaintance formed in the brigade.
On the evening of the 22d, Anderson’s division, under Major General Mahone, moved out beyond the city entrenchments on the east near Prentiss’ and Wilcox’s farms. Passing up a very deep ravine to avoid exposure to the enemy’s artillery, the line of battle was formed along the edge of a very thick woods full of the enemy’s skirmishers, soon engaged by ours close at hand. When all was ready, the work was given and Wright’s brigade, with the deafening Southern yell leaped the fence and dashed into the thick undergrowth leading the advance. The double line of Yankee skirmishers fled before us as on we pressed, through the dense thicken, making the woods ring with cheers, to the assault of the enemy’s breastworks.
The left of the brigade coming out into an open field before the rest of the line became visible, and the brigade on our left being behind, received a concentrated cross fire from the Yankee works and suffered severely. Capt. Busbee, Adjutant Carter, Sergeant Tinsley, color bearer, and many others of the 10th Georgia Battalion, were here shot down. All the color guard except one, were wounded. The 2d Georgia Battalion, advancing gallantly on our left, suffered heavily, losing thirty-five killed and wounded, also the 48th Georgia.
An order was here passed down from the right to fall back, and the line was much exposed in falling back to the woods.
There on the right and left coming up the advance was again made, and the enemy’s works gallantly carried, many of the enemy being killed and wounded; some 2,000 prisoners, several stands of colors, and three pieces of artillery. Two of the flags were first taken by Private Edward Creed, Co. B, 10th Ga. Battalion, and two of the pieces of artillery were first reached by Sergeant Finch and Corporal Durham, Co. A, 10th Ga. Battalion.
The enemy attempted to retake the works during the evening, but their men could not be induced to form the acquaintance of our Southern boys at a nearer distance than about fifty yards. The 10th Georgia Battalion was thanked for its good conduct on the field by our gallant commander – Brigadier General Wright.1
- “For the Daily Telegraph,” Macon Telegraph, July 9, 1864, p. ? col. ? ↩