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Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/39

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Gordon's Assault on Fort Stc<lm<ui. 31

On the 25th day of March, 1865, from the Appomattox around to Fort Howard, which was on the Federal lines at a point about due south from the Customhouse in Petersburg, these lines were occu- pied by the troops of the gth Corps, then commanded by General John G. Parke. In his report of the operations of his command on that day, he says:

"The line held by this corps extended from the Appomattox on the right, with pickets stretching some three miles down the river, to Fort Howard on the left, a distance of about seven miles. The line was occupied by the First Division, Brevet Major-General O. B. Wilcox, commanding, extending from the Appomattox to Fort Meikel, and the Second Division, Brevet Major-General R. B. Pot- ter, commanding, extending from Fort Meikel to Fort Howard. The Third Division, Brigadier-General J. F. Hartranft, command- ing, was held in reserve, its right regiment being posted near the Dunn House Battery, and its left regiment between Forts Hays and Howard. The entrenchment held by Wilcox' s Division and the First Brigade of Potter's, were very nearly placed when the positions were originally gained by our troops, under fire, and in so close proximity to the enemy that the work was necessarily very effective. This was especially the case with Fort Stedman, where our line crossed the Prince George Courthouse road. This is a small work without bastions, with Battery No. 10 immediately adjoining, the battery open in the rear, and the ground in the rear of the fort nearly as high as its parapet. The opposing lines are Here about 150 yards apart, the picket lines about fifty yards. This portion of the line was held by the .Third Brigade. First Division, Brevet Brigadier-General M. B. McLaughlen, commanding.

G. S. B.