Report of Maj. Gen. Richard H. Anderson, C. S. Army, Commanding Anderson's Division.
DECEMBER 11-15, 1862.--Battle of Fredericksburg, Va.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXI [S# 31]
HEADQUARTERS ANDERSON'S DIVISION,
Near Fredericksburg, Va., January 3, 1863.
Maj. G. MOXLEY SORREL,
Assistant Adjutant General, Hdqrs. First Army Corps.
MAJOR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by my division in the battle of Fredericksburg:
Upon the signal being given on the morning of December 11, the troops were placed rapidly in position in rear of the line of field-works and batteries extending from Hazel Run, on the right, to the water-works dam, on the left, in the following order: Featherston's, Perry's, Mahone's, Wright's, and Wilcox's brigades.
In the afternoon of the 11th, Ransom's division having been placed between Hazel Run and the Plank road, Featherston's brigade was moved to the left of that road. About dark, General [Robert] Ransom, jr., recrossed Hazel Run, and General [W. S.] Featherston was replaced in his former position. Detachments of one regiment from each brigade were thrown in front of the batteries, and strong pickets were pushed forward toward the town and along the canal.
Early on the 12th, General Ransom resumed his former place, between Hazel Run and the Plank road, and Featherston's brigade was again drawn to the left of the road. This position of the brigades, in the order above mentioned, was maintained until Thursday, December 17, when the division was withdrawn, and the troops returned to their camps.
Previously to the commencement of the engagement, there were two regiments, the Third Georgia and the Eighth Florida, of Wright's and Perry's brigades, on duty in and near Fredericksburg. These regiments had been placed under the orders of Brigadier-General Barksdale, commanding in the town, and were engaged with the enemy when he was laying his bridges and preparing to cross the river. The Third Georgia met with but very slight loss. The Eighth Florida suffered a loss of 87 killed, wounded, and missing. The missing (43) were undoubtedly captured. The detachments and pickets which were advanced the first night in front of the batteries and along the canal continued to occupy their posts, and they suffered some loss.
The whole loss of the division was 158 killed, wounded, and missing. The commanders of batteries, Captains [V.] Maurin, [Frank] Huger, and [J. W.] Lewis, and Lieutenant [William T.] Peet, commanding [Charles R.] Grandy's battery, merit especial notice for their skill, courage, and good management throughout the five days. Their batteries were subjected to a very heavy fire from those of the enemy. None of their shot, however, were spent in an artillery duel, but were reserved for those opportunities which the advancing and retiring columns of the enemy gave them.
It gives me pleasure to say that the most commendable spirit was exhibited by the officers and soldiers of the whole division. Their patient endurance of the exposures to which they were subjected gave assurance of good conduct and gallant deeds had an opportunity been presented. Featherston's and Perry's brigades lay four days and nights in an open field without shelter and without fire.
It is due to Brigadier-General Mahone to say that he discovered and pointed out the important position for a battery, which enfiladed the slope upon which the enemy formed his battalions before and after his attacks upon Marye's Hill, and that he rendered very efficient service, assisting in the construction of the battery which drove them from their place of shelter.
I beg leave to mention also Brig. Gen. Cadmus M. Wilcox, and to ask attention to his long-continued and uniformly meritorious conduct in his present grade. I have witnessed his courage, zeal, and ability, and have received most efficient co-operation and assistance from him in the battles of Williamsburg, Seven Pines, Gaines' Mill, Frazer's Farm, Second Manassas, and Fredericksburg. I earnestly recommend his promotion.
Mr. F. W. Jett, an engineer attached to my division, rendered good service in the erection of field-works, making and repairing roads, digging rifle-pits and trenches, and such like work.
The reports of the commanders of brigades are herewith submitted.
I am, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,
R. H. ANDERSON,
Major-General, Commanding Division.
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