Cedar Creek Report, Commander, 11th Indiana Infantry, 2d Brigade, 2d Division, 19th Corps (OR, 43, 336-7)


Cedar Creek, Va.,, October 22,1864.

SIR: I most respectfully submit the following report of the part taken by the Eleventh Indiana in the engagement of the 19th at this place:

At 5.15 a. m. of the 19th we were in line, pursuant to orders received the evening of the 18th, and ready to move off, when firing commenced in front, and almost simultaneously a Volley was heard in direction of the extreme left and to the rear of the line, and but a short time had elapsed till the effect of the enemy's fire was perceptible in my own regiment. In. obedience to Colonel Molineux's order I marched the regiment by the flank up a ravine on my left and in the direction of stone house, occupied by General Sheridan as headquarters, a few moments after which I was ordered to advance to a stone fence in the vicinity of General Emory's headquarters, pursuant to which I commenced advancing, under an extremely sharp fire from the enemy, and had only succeeded in reaching the top of the first hill when I halted. Perceiving that our troops were already driven from the stone fence that I was ordered to advance to, I did not deem it practicable nor possible to reach it; so I fell back across a small creek to a hill and halted. We were at this time separated from the rest of the brigade. I had formed line in rear of some battery that was actively engaged with the enemy, when I received an order from a member of General Emory's staff to fix bayonets and charge the enemy. The regiment, after fixing bayonets, had advanced but a few yards; I received an order to fall back to the next ridge, about 200 yards in the rear, and from that to a point of woods still farther to the rear, which I had just reached when I received your order to join the rest of the brigade, which was then in position at and near a large white house on the extreme right of our lines. I immediately marched my regiment across the large, open field and formed line on the right of the br igade, where the regiment opened fire on the enemy and assisted in checking them for a time, until the -brigade fell back, passing through a Piece of woods and halting in a large, open space of country, where we remained about one hour and were then ordered in line with the brigade to a piece of woods about half a mile to the rear. I there deployed the regiment as skirmishers, in accordance with your order, covering the front of the brigade and retiring slowly until informed by an aide of General Sheridan that our line was halted and being marched back for the purpose of attacking the enemy, and received instructions front same aide to hold the ground occupied by my skirmish line, which I did without opposition, until I advanced to the front about half a mile by order of General Emory and occupied a ridge, commanding the country about one mile to the front. I occupied said position till ordered to rejoin the brigade, which I found in a wood in line, from which I soon advanced in line with the brigade in the general assault made on the enemy , who were strongly posted behind a stone fence, about 300 yards in our front.. The enemy were soon dislodged from the fence, and immediately after from a hill where they had thrown up rails for defense. We remained at that hill under a sharp fire from artillery and infantry about one hour, during which time the regiment kept up a constant fire until we were out ammunition. The line was again ordered forward, and without much opposition kept advancing until arriving at the ground occupied by us the night previous, where I was ordered to camp for the night.

It is but just to mention, before closing this report, the gallant conduct of every officer and man in my command. Please find inclosed a list of casualties during the day's engagement.[Not inluded.]

Very respectfully, your most obedient servant,


Lieutenant- Colonel, Commanding Eleventh Indiana Veterans.

Lieut. B. F. COPELAND,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., 2d Brig., 2d Div., 19th Army Corps.