Report of Brig. Gen.
John C. Robinson, U.S. Army, commanding Second Division.
APRIL 27-MAY 6, 1863.--The Chancellorsville Campaign.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXV/1 [S# 39]
HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, FIRST ARMY CORPS,
May 9, 1863.
Lieut. Col. C. KINGSBURY, Jr.,
Assistant Adjutant-General, First Army Corps.
COLONEL: This division left its encampment near Fletcher Chapel about 1 p.m. on the 28th ultimo, and bivouacked that night at the edge of the woods in rear of the Fitzhugh mansion.
The next morning it marched to the bridges which were laid at the mouth of Pollock's Mill Creek. During the afternoon the enemy shelled this position, killing and wounding several officers and enlisted men, when I moved the division back to the cover of the River road, where it rested in safety.
On Saturday morning, I received orders to march to the United States Ford, which I crossed about sunset, and proceeded in the direction of Chancellorsville, driving back hundreds of the fugitives of the Eleventh Corps. I was then directed to take up a position on and covering the Hunting Creek road. Arriving at that point at 1 o'clock on Sunday morning, I immediately deployed one regiment of each brigade, and pushed them forward (two in front and one on the right) to feel the enemy and establish them as pickets. The Second Brigade (Baxter's) and the Third Brigade (Leonard's) were then established in line of battle to the left of the road. The First Brigade (Root's) was formed with its left on the road and extending its right down the creek. I then directed breastworks to be built, and, although the men were greatly fatigued, they went cheerfully to work, and in the course of the day completed a formidable line of rifle-pits.
At an early hour on Sunday morning, a German battery, of light 12-pounder guns, was sent to me and placed in position, with orders to hold it at all hazards.
When the heavy firing commenced on my left, and while I was for a few moments absent from the right, this battery was withdrawn from its position, and in the most cowardly manner fled, with the horses upon a run, in the direction of our bridges at the United States Ford. I regret 1 do not know the commander's name, that he might meet the reward which his dastardly and treacherous conduct deserves. Fortunately our own batteries arrived soon after. Ransom's (Company G, Fifth U.S. Artillery) light 12.pounders were put in position on the right to sweep the sloping ground, and Hall's (Second Maine Battery) 3-inch rifled guns to reach the heights beyond. Stewart, with his battery (B, Fourth U.S. Artillery) of light 12-pounders, was placed in position toward the left of my line.
My command now felt perfectly secure in its position, and awaited the arrival of the enemy with impatience. Leppien's (Fifth Maine Battery), attached to this division, was engaged in another part of the field, and suffered very severely Thompson's (Independent Pennsylvania) was also detached. About 100 prisoners were taken and sent in by my pickets.
On Monday, I was directed to make a reconnaissance on the road leading to Ely's Ford. For this I selected the Twelfth and Thirteenth Massachusetts Volunteers and a section of Hall's battery. After proceeding about 3 miles, I received the fire of the enemy's skirmishers to the left of the road, and had some of my skirmishers wounded. I proceeded cautiously to the forks of the road, when, becoming satisfied the enemy was in force on the left, I directed the command to return to camp.
During the night of the 5th instant the division was withdrawn from its position and recrossed the river in good order, arriving at its present camp yesterday.
The following is a list of casualties:
Aggregate First Brigade --- --- 1 4 --- --- 5 Second Brigade 1 2 --- 14 --- 5 22 Third Brigade 2 --- --- 13 --- 1 16 5th Maine Battery --- 6 3 19 --- --- 28 Thompson's Battery --- 1 --- 3 --- --- 4 TOTAL 3 9 4 53 --- 6 75
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JNO. C. ROBINSON,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.
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