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Maj William Raphael's Official Report

Report of September 23, 1862

[author biography]

Bolivar Heights, Va., September 23, 1862.

Major O. J. CRANE,
Seventh Ohio Volunteers, Commanding First Brigade.

MAJOR: On the morning of the 17th September, 1862 the regiment, under command of Major Ario Pardee, jr. in compliance with orders from Brigadier-General Greene, commanding Second Division, Second Corps, advanced in line of battle upon the enemy's center, at 6 o'clock. After severe fighting through a thick wood in which the enemy was concealed, we completely routed them, strewing the ground with their dead and wounded. The enemy gave way before us, and, upon our advancing rapidly, they abandoned three pieces of artillery - one, a 12-pounder iron gun, the other two, 12-pounder brass pieces. A most gallant charge was made by the regiment. As the enemy advanced upon us the second time we again drove them back, killing many. The regiment then advanced to within 50 yards of the enemy's lines, and held the position there until a regiment on the right gave way under a most galling fire, when the regiment was compelled to fall back, owing to the supply of ammunition being exhausted and the overwhelming force of the enemy, advancing in three columns on our right, left, and center, threatening annihilation to the small force in that position, numbering of the regiment about 300 men, and of the Federal forces not exceeding 600.

At 1.30 p. m. the order was given to fall back, when the regiment retired about 200 yards to the rear, when it was relieved by forces under command of General Smith.

It is impossible at this time to speak of individual bravery.* Suffice it to say one and all, officers and men, could not possibly have fought with more determination.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Major Twenty-eighth Regiment Pennsylvania Vols. Commanding.

* A medal of honor was awarded to Corporal Jacob G. Orth, Company D, of this regiment, for the capture of a flag supposed to belong to the Seventh South Carolina Infantry.

Source: OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, Vol 19, Part 1 (Antietam - Serial 27) , Pages 509 - 510


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