15 Series I Volume XXXVIII-I Serial 72 - The Atlanta Campaign Part I

Page 15 Chapter L. GENERAL REPORTS.

Landing, under orders for City Point, to report to General Butler, at Bermuda Hundred, of which General Butler was notified, and the importance of holding a position in advance of his present line urged upon him.

About 2 o'clock in the afternoon General Butler was forced back to the line the enemy had withdrawn from in the morning. General Wright, with his two divisions, joined General Butler on the forenoon of the 17th, the latter still holding with a strong picket-line the enemy's works. But instead of putting these divisions into the enemy's works to hold them, he permitted them to halt and rest some distance in the rear of his own line. Between 4 and 5 o'clock in the afternoon the enemy attacked and drove in his pickets and reoccupied his old line. On the night of the 20th and morning of the 21st a lodgment was effected by General Butler, with one brigade of infantry, on the north bank of the James, at Deep Bottom, and connected by pontoon bridge with Bermuda Hundred.

On the 19th General Sheridan, on his return from his expedition against the Virginia Central Railroad, arrived at the White House just as the enemy's cavalry was about to attack it, and compelled it to retire. The results of this expedition was that General Sheridan met the enemy's cavalry near Trevilian Station on the morning of the 11th of June, whom he attacked and, after an obstinate contest, drove from the field in complete rout. He left his dead and nearly all his wounded in our hands, and about 400 prisoners and several hundred horses. On the 12th he destroyed the railroad from Trevilian Station to Louisiana Court-House. This occupied until 3 p.m., when he advanced in the direction of Gordonsville. He found the enemy re-enforced by infantry, behind well-constructed rifle-pits, about five miles from the latter place, and too strong to successfully assault. On the extreme right, however, his reserve brigade carried the enemy's works twice, and was twice driven therefrom by infantry. Night closed the contest. Not having sufficient ammunition to continue the engagement, and his animals being without forage (the country furnishing but inferior grazing),and hearing nothing from General Hunter, he withdrew his command to the north side of the North Anna,and commenced his return march, reaching White House at the time before stated. After breaking up the depot at that place he moved to the James River, which be reached safely after heavy fighting. He commenced crossing on the 25th, near Fort Powhatan, without further molestation, and rejoined the Army of the Potomac.

On the 22nd General Wilson, with his own division of cavalry,of the Army of the Potomac, and General Kautz's division of cavalry, of the Army of the James, moved against the enemy's railroads south of Richmond. Striking the Weldon railroad at Reams' Station, destroying the depot and several miles of the road and the South Side road about fifteen from Petersburg, to near Nottoway Station, where he met and defeated a force of the enemy's cavalry, he reached Burkeville Station on the afternoon of the 23d, and from there destroyed the Danville railroad to Roanoke bridge a distance of twenty-five miles, where he found the enemy in force, and in a position from which he could not dislodge him. He then commenced his return march, and on the 28th met the enemy's cavalry in force at the Weldon railroad crossing of Stony Creek, where he had a severe but not decisive engagement. Thence he made a detour from his left, with a view of reaching Reams' Station, supposing


Page 15 Chapter L. GENERAL REPORTS.