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LCol William Hays' Official Report

Report of September 30, 1862

[author biography]

Camp near Sharpsburg, Md., September 30, 1862.

Lieut. Col. FRED. T. LOCKE,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Fifth Army Corps.

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report:

Early on the morning of the 16th instant I placed Captains Taft's and Langner's and Lieutenant Von Kleiser's and Lieutenant Wever's batteries of 20-pounder Parrott guns in position on a hill in rear of and near the bridge over the Antietam Creek, the position being in rear of and about the center of our line of battle. Soon after getting into position the enemy opened upon us a heavy fire from several guns. The firing was returned, and kept up briskly until the enemy stopped firing and withdrew his guns. In this engagement Major Arndt, commanding the First Battalion, New York Artillery, was mortally wounded (died on the 18th) while personally assisting at one of the guns. During the remainder of this day there was occasional firing, and about sunset our guns were brought to bear on the enemy's troops in front of General Hooker's command. Some time in the afternoon Captain Taft's and Lieutenant Von Kleiser's batteries were moved to the heights some distance to the left. Lieutenant Hazlett's battery, D, Fifth Artillery, was placed at daylight on the 17th in the position occupied the previous day by Captain Taft's battery.

From early in the morning of the 17th, until late in the afternoon, Captains Taft's and Langner's, Lieutenants Von Kleiser's, Wever's, and Hazlett's batteries fired at the enemy's batteries and troops whenever and wherever it could be done without risk to our own troops. These batteries were well served and the fire very effective. On the 19th, Captain Kusserow's and Captain Langner's batteries were engaged firing across the Potomac. Captains Gibson's, Robertson's, Tidball's, and Lieutenant Hains' batteries of horse artillery served with General Pleasonton's command. Lieutenants Benjamin's and Muhlenberg's and Captain Edwards' batteries were on duty with General Burnside's army, Lieutenant Butler's battery with General Couch, and Van Reed's with General Sykes.

Captain Graham's battery, K, First Artillery, was sent by General Porter to General Richardson's division. The battery was actively and warmly engaged and did good service. His loss in men, horses, and material was very great. For a more detailed account of the services of this battery, I call attention to his report, herewith transmitted.

Lieutenant Miller's battery, G, Fourth Artillery, was on the 17th ordered to join General Sykes' division, but was not engaged with the enemy.

All the officers acted with judgment and coolness, and the men were active and efficient. The behavior of all, both officers and men, was highly praiseworthy. The members of my staff, Dr. Gouley, medical director; Captains Sappington and Swift, assistant commissaries; Captain Suydam, quartermaster; Lieutenant Brownson, acting assistant adjutant-general, and Lieutenant Gilliss, conductor of ambulances, all performed their respective duties well and efficiently.

The following is a list of the company officers present at the battle, viz:

Battery K, First Artillery, Capt. W. M. Graham, commanding battery; First Lieuts. S.S. Elder and W. M. Maynadier; Second Lieut. T. Von Michalowski.

Battery G, Fourth Artillery, Lieut. M.P. Miller, commanding battery; Lieut. G. Dickenson.

Fifth New York Battery Capt. E. D. Taft, commanding battery; First Lieut. T. Henderson, second Lieut. J.P. Denike.

Battery A, First New York Artillery, First Lieut. Bernhard Wever, commanding battery; Second Lieut. Bernhard Kohans.

Battery B, First New York Artillery, First Lieutenant Von Kleiser, commanding battery; Second Lieut. Charles Hansmann.

Battery C, First New York Artillery, Capt. R. Langner, commanding battery; Second Lieutenant [Michael] Lang.

Battery D, First New York Artillery, Capt. Charles Kusserow, commanding battery; Second Lieut. Gustave C. Blitsher, Second Lieut. George Gaston, Second Lieut. Adolph Reikert, First New York Artillery; Second Lieutenant [F. G.] Moller, acting adjutant.

I respectfully recommend Captain Graham and First Lieutenant Elder for promotion by brevet for their conduct in the battle of the 17th instant.

Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Artillery Reserve.


Source: OFFICIAL RECORDS; Series 1, Volume 19, Part I (Antietam - Serial 27), Pages 342 - 343


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