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Maj F. H. Little's Official Report

Report of October 7, 1862

[author biography]

October 7, 1862.

Commanding Third Brigade.

SIR: In relation to the part taken by my regiment in the battle of Sharpsburg, September 17, I have the honor to report as follows, to wit:

On the night of September 16, I received at Shepherdstown an order from Major-General Longstreet, requiring me to join immediately my brigade with my regiment, the left wing of my regiment being at that time at Martinsburg, having been detailed as a guard for General D. H. Hill's commissary train, under command of Captain John W. Stokes, senior captain of said wing. Having received a note from Captain Stokes to the effect that he had seen General Longstreet's order, I remained at Shepherdstown, on the bank of the Potomac, hourly expecting him to arrive. At 8 o'clock, Captain Stokes failing to arrive, and, as I have since learned, having been detained by order of provost marshal at Martinsburg, I crossed the river with the right wing, and proceeded with all possible expedition to Sharpsburg, in quest of the brigade to which my regiment belonged.

On arriving at Sharpsburg, I was met by Captain Latrobe, aide to General Jones, commander of the division to which my brigade belonged, and received orders from him to move out to the right, stating that he would soon meet me and guide me to the position it was desired for me to occupy. Shortly after this, Major Coward, also one of General Jones' aides, conducted me to a strong position behind a stone fence, immediately on the right of the position occupied by a portion of General Toombs' brigade. Here I was placed under the command of General Toombs. Skirmishers were sent out, and brisk firing soon commenced on our right. Our skirmishers were run in; the enemy's skirmishers advanced to within about 125 yards of us; a full line of battle was drawn up in their rear. We quietly awaited their advance, but the efforts of their officers to move them forward were unavailing. We did not fire upon them until they began to fall back, and them a portion of the men fired with great coolness and precision, evidently doing execution.

About 4 o'clock we were relieved by troops from General A. P. Hill's division, and moved, under command of General Toombs, back in the direction of Sharpsburg, my regiment being in front. Heavy firing was heard just ahead of us, and very soon we were met by one of General Toombs' aides, urging us forward. We moved up in double-quick, fronted the enemy, who were moving forward in handsome style without opposition, our opposing troops having retired. Our arrival was just in time to save on e of our batteries, name not known. We immediately opened upon them a well-directed fire, which the enemy stoutly resisted for awhile, but soon broke and fled. General Toombs immediately gave the order to charge, which the men, with loud and long-continued cheers, as promptly obeyed, continuing the chase until ordered by General Toombs to halt.

I carried into this action about 140 men; had 10 wounded, none killed. The action closed a little after nightfall, when, by order of General Toombs, we were removed from the field for the night. The next morning there was brisk picket firing, but the enemy refused to renew the contest.

In this action both officers and men under my command acted with the most commendable courage and coolness, inflicting severe injury upon the enemy.

Respectfully submitted,

Major, Commanding Eleventh Regiment Georgia Volunteers.

Source: OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, Vol 19, Part 1 (Antietam - Serial 27) , Pages 911-912


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