No. 54. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Joseph W. Spaulding, Nineteenth Maine Infantry, of operations February 5-11.1
HEADQUARTERS NINETEENTH MAINE VOLUNTEERS,
February 12, 1865.
CAPTAIN; I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of this regiment in the late movement:
This regiment left its camp in front of Fort Emery at 6 a.m. the 5th instant. Marched shortly after with the division out about two miles and a half on the Vaughan road, and filed to the right into a by-road. Before reaching the Armstrong house, and while on the march, General Smyth ordered me to move the regiment in line of battle off to the left; this was done, deploying two companies as skirmishers in front. When the skirmish line reached Hatcher’s Run the enemy’s vedettes were posted on the opposite bank, but immediately fell back to their skirmish line, which lay in a rifle-pit running nearly parallel to and about ten rods from the opposite bank. The skirmishers crossed the run and were held under cover until the regiment crossed which could only be done by one man crossing at a time on a fallen tree. The skirmishers then showed themselves and engaged the enemy’s skirmishers. In less than fifteen minutes after the firing began the enemy ran from their rifle-pit, which was immediately occupied by our skirmish line. This line, increased by two more companies, now made connection on its right with the line on this side of the run, and about one hour after, the skirmishers of the Third Division advancing, made connection with our left. At 4.30 p.m. the enemy advanced upon this line (which was immediately strengthened by two more companies), but were checked, and in about one hour driven back.
At 12 m. the 6th instant this regiment, having been relieved by troops from Fifth Army Corps, rejoined the brigade, and threw up breast-works in the afternoon. Lay in this position until the evening of the 10th instant, when the regiment was deployed and engaged until 12 at night in digging pits for the picket-line and remained as pickets until 5 p.m. of the 11th instant, when it was relieved and moved into its present camp.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. W. SPAULDING,
Captain WILL GILDER,
Assistant Adjutant-General, First Brigade.
- The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Volume XLVI, Part 1 (Serial Number 95), page 215 ↩