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Page:A narrative of service with the Third Wisconsin Infantry.djvu/93

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on, flushed with victory, and in some disorder. But in a few minutes we sent them back, in worse disorder than they had come. We followed them for a quarter of a mile, but there encountered a second line. In a short time we had the satisfaction of seeing their backs, also, dimly in the distance. Colonel Colgrove of the Twenty-Seventh Indiana, who was commanding the Brigade, now ordered a bayonet charge; but before we were fairly started, General Ruger sent orders not to advance any farther. Soon the enemy attacked again; but after a stubborn fight we sent them back for a third time, their ranks disorganized and the ground thickly strewn with their dead.

It was now near nine o'clock. We had been fighting continuously for three hours, and all of the ammunition that we carried had been exhausted. That carried by the pack mules had been distributed, also, and was nearly all fired away. The muskets had become so heated and foul that it was difficult to load them. Some of the pieces were so hot that the cartridge would explode as soon as it struck the bottom of the gun, and before the man had been able to aim. Because of this, we were