(September 17, 1862.)
On the night of September 16, Hays' Brigade bivouacked in the woods northwest of the Dunkard Church. Soon after daylight on the 17th, with about 550 men, it moved through the woods, crossed the Hagerstown Pike 120 yards north of the Church and advanced eastward to fill a gap between the Brigades of Lawton and Trimble, but was halted and, after a short wait in the open field northeast of the Church was ordered to the support of Lawton's Brigade, then fiercely engaged about 150 yards south of this point. It advanced beyond Lawton's line, penetrated the Cornfield, and came under an enfilading fire from several Union Batteries, and from Infantry in front and on the left, west of the Pike, by which its force was reduced by more than half. It was obliged to fall back out of the Cornfield to the high ground about 70 yards south of this, where it was relieved by Wofford's Brigade, of Hood's Division and thence withdrawn to the fields southwest of the Dunkard Church. Of the 550 engaged, 323 were killed or wounded.