CHAP. xLvill.i RAPIDAN TO THE JAMBS 581
at the very muzzle of a rebel musket, the powder burning his clothes,
and into the wound. The fighting here was desperate for a few mo-
ments, until their line of battle forced us to retire. Capt. D. C.
Bradish was killed inside their lines.
The following are the casualties :*
About *10 p. m. of the 7th we evacuated the works at Wilderness,
marching by Old Wilderness Tavern toward Todd's Tavern, which
point we passed about 8 a. m. of the 8th, and halted for coffee, but be-
fore the men had time to get coffee or breakfast we were ordered to
move to Spotsylvania Court-House, and marched at once, passing
other infantry troops and the cavalry. While marching in column
along the road to the Court-House our Hankers were vigorously at-
tacked by the skirmishers of the enemy, when we were swung out to
the right of the road, formed and charged the enemy's lines posted
in a wood on the point of a hill. We made two separate and desperate
charges under a galling fire of infantry and artillery, but were finally
outnumbered and outflanked, and forced to retire, leaving dead and
wounded. From this beginning the fighting was continued all day.
In the first charge made in this battle (Laurel Hill) Private Lucius R.
Mills, of Company H, seized the colors of the Eighty-third Pennsylva-
nia from the ground and carried them to the front,- and again in the
second charge he planted them beside our own colors in the very teeth
of the enemy and brought them safely off, but in retiring he was
seriously wounded, and sent the colors to the Eighty-third Regi-
ment by another man. We came out of the fight with 27 officers and
men. On the 9th we lay a short distance in rear of where we charged
on the previous day, supporting the front line, Second Brigade, Col-
On the 10th the First. Michigan, with the Eighteenth Massachu-
setts and Sixteenth Michigan (all of Bartlett's brigade), held the
skirmish line in front of the Second Brigade. The fire was terribly
severe, and the regiments had to be very often relieved. About 1
o'clock on the morning of the 11th the enemy assaulted the line of
the First Michigan and made a desperate attempt to drive it from
the rifle-pits, but was handsomely repulsed with great loss. Capt.
Lewis C. Randall was killed in this attack of the enemy. At 3 a. m.
of the 12th we moved to the right and relieved part of the pickets
of the Second Corps. We demonstrated on the enemy's left, driving
the skirmishers across the Po River, but were forced under a severe
shelling to recross the river, holding the bank of the river till dark,
when retired to breast-works in rear, where we remained till the
13th, when we were relieved by Second Division and rejoined our
division. At 9 p. m. of the 14th we moved to the left through mud
and rain, making a march of 7 miles, an arriving before Spotsyl-
vania Court-House about daylight, the men completely exhausted
and unable to make an attack. Lines were formed and some old
works occupied and held until the*17th. when a new line of earth-
works was built. At sundown of the 17th moved to the left and
front as skirmishers, covering a new advanced line, into which the
brigade moved and threw up breast-works during the night ; held
this skirmish line until 8 p. m. of the 18th, when relieved by Eighty-
* Nominal list (omitted) shows killed, 5 ; wounded, 49 ; prisoners, 12.