Hdqrs. Sixty-seventh Regiment Ohio Vols.,
Sir: I have the honor to report the part taken by my regiment in the late movements and operations on the James between the 14th and 20th instant, inclusive, as follows:
Four companies, to wit, B, D, H, and I, commanded, respectively, by Capt. H. J. Crane, Capt. William Nixon, Lieut. John J. Parsons, and Capt. Charles P. Schaefer, were all of my command that took part in the demonstration on the north side of the James. I took command of these four companies in person, and on the morning of the 14th led the battalion in the assault on the first line of rifle-pits. My men charged gallantly upon the rifle-pits, taking several prisoners. On the evening and night of the same day accompanied the brigade to the left bank of the Four-Mile Run, and on the 15th marched toward the right of our lines, the excessive heat of the day prostrating with coup de soleil some thirty of my men and two officers. On the 16th instant my battalion occupied the left of the brigade in the movement in line of battle toward the enemy’s position. On approaching their line of pits my command was deployed as skirmishers to open the way for the attacking columns, and led the brigade in the assault on their works. As the skirmish line emerged from the thick woods into the abatis of the enemy in front of their works my skirmishers delivered a deadly fire at the heads of the rebels as they stood behind their earth-works, at the same time receiving a heavy volley from them, and then dashed through the abatis and over the rifle-pits. The fire of my skirmishers caused the death of the rebel general Girardey. We also took one stand of colors and a number of prisoners. During the succeeding days of our operations my men did their duty heroically and well. The battle casualties amounted to 41, nominal report of which has been forwarded.
I have to regret the death of Actg. Lieut. J. J. Parsons, one who gave promise of becoming a line officer. He was commanding Company H at the time he was killed. Officers and men did everything that could be expected of veterans. I take pleasure in calling attention to the conduct of Capt. Henry J. Crane, who throughout, by his patient constancy, set an example of the true officer to the men of the command, he being in command of the battalion while I was in command of the brigade. I assumed command of the brigade by order of General Terry at 4 p. m. of the 16th, and remained in command thereof till the morning of the 18th, when I was relieved by Colonel Howell, its ranking officer. I have not thought it necessary to make special report of the operations of the brigade during this term, as no action took place other than affairs on the picket-line. I might say that this time was full of anxiety to the men, as we were in close proximity to the enemy and at any moment liable to attack.
I must, before closing this report, say that the conduct of the officers and men of my battalion, while at the front of the attacking column on the 16th, was of that dashing, heroic kind that could not but inspire the columns following with that heroic vigor that always wins. Permit me to say that I am proud, proud, proud of the conduct of these four companies of the Sixty-seventh.
A. C. VORIS,
Colonel, Comdg. Sixty-seventh Regiment Ohio Vol. Infantry.
Capt. R. O. Phillips, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
- The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Volume XLII, Part 1 (Serial Number 87), page 696 ↩