Numbers 67. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Henry S. Huidekoper, 150th Pennsylvania Infantry.

SIR:

Report of the action of the One hundred and fiftieth Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers at Gettysburg, Pa., on July 1: On the morning of July 1, the one hundred and fiftieth regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers left camp near Emmitsburg, and about noon arrived on the battle-field at Gettysburg. Rapidly throwing off their knapsacks, the regiment moved up on the ground between the Iron Brigade and the other regiments of Colonel Stone’s brigade, which reached to the Chambersburg road. After lying under shelling for an hour, the command of the regiment fell to me, Colonel Wister taking command of the brigade.

Almost immediately, by order of Colonel Wister, a change of front forward on first company was made with regularity and promptness, and in that new position, protected by a fence, our men awaited the charge of a rebel regiment which was attempting to flank the One hundred and forty-third and One hundred and forty-ninth Regiments, which had gallantly repulsed an attack in their front. At the distance of 50 yards, a volley was poured into the rebels, which staggered them so completely that a second one was fired before an attempt was made to advance ore retreat. At this juncture, Colonel Wister ordered the regiment to charge, and led it in person. The rebels were utterly routed, and the colors of the One hundred and forty-ninth Pennsylvania Volunteers, which had been lost, were recaptured and restored to that regiment.

The One hundred and fiftieth then fell back to the position from which it had advanced. The firing of the enemy, who was approaching in front of the corps, now became fearful, and the regiment changed front to rear to meet this new attack. The movement was made in perfect order, and then bravely did the men move to the front, following the color-sergeant, who rushed to place his standard on the small rise of ground in advance. Four companies again changed front to resist the flank attack, while the remainder of the regiment fought one entire brigade, which was prevented from advancing by a high fence.

The severe loss attending fighting at such odds soon compelled our men to give way, but a battery coming up on our left, another stand was necessary, and again was the regiment moved forward until the battery had wheeled around and moved to the rear. At this moment a wound compelled me to relinquish the command to Captain Widdis, Major Chamberlain having been severely wounded some time before. I cannot praise too highly the conduct of both officers and men. It was all that could have been desired.

Among the many brave, I would especially commend for coolness and courage Major Chamberlain, Adjutant Ashurst, Lieutenants Sears, Chancellor (who lost his leg and has since died), Bell, Kilgore, Color-bearer [John] Pieffer, Sergeant [Duffy B.] Torbett, and Corporal [Roe] Reisinger. The regiment numbered, including 17 officers, before the battle nearly 400 at roll-call; in the evening but 2 officers, 1 of those wounded, and 84 men were present. As far as I can learn, the number killed was about 60; the rest were wounded or captured.

I am, your obedient servant,

H. S. HUIDEKOPER,
Lieutenant Colonel One hundred and fiftieth Pennsylvania Vols.

Lieutenant DALGLIESH,
A. A. A. G., Second Brig., Third Div., First Corps.

Numbers 68. Report of Capt, George W. Jones, One hundred and fiftieth Pennsylvania Infantry.
CAMP NEAR BERLIN, MD.,

July 17, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to report that, on the lst instant, this regiment was drawn into line of battle on the west side of Gettysburg, Pa., in front of the enemy, and ordered to divest themselves of everything but their guns, accouterments, haversacks, and canteens. This being done, Company B was detailed as skirmishers, who advanced about one-half mile, and engaged the enemy for three-quarters of an hour, when the main body of the regiment became engaged, and did not retire until compelled to do so by the advance of a line of battle of the enemy, when they fell back to the main line of the regiment. After the skirmishers were sent out, the regiment advanced a short distance, and took advantage of a slight rise in the ground as a protection against the enemy’s shells. Here the regiment lay for nearly three hours under a heavy fire of artillery, when the enemy’s line of battle advanced from the woods into the open field, and we were ordered to advance to a fence on the highest ground in our front.

The enemy’s line of infantry opened fire upon us as soon as we made our appearance, and we became hotly engaged for some time, when the enemy’s line advanced and met with the same fate. A third and much stronger line appeared in our front and on both flanks, which forced our flanks to retire, and we were ordered by you to fall back, which was done in good order, to a battery in our rear. Here we rallied, and engaged the enemy for a short time, when we again received the order to fall back, which was done through the second line of defenses on Cemetery Hill, and formed into line.

Our ammunition being entirely exhausted, we were here supplied with 60 rounds of cartridges. On the 2d, we supported a battery until about 6 p. m., when we were ordered to the front and on the left of the Fifth Corps as pickets. We were ordered to advance our line until we encountered the enemy’s line of pickets, which was done, and we exchanged a few shots and were ordered to fall back, bringing with us two guns and caissons. Our line of pickets was stationed about 600 yards in front of the defenses, and remained here until the morning of the 3d, when we were relieved by aline of skirmishers, and retired to the second line of defenses, under a heavy fire of shell from the enemy’s batteries. This command lay all day and night of the 3rd under all the heavy cannonading of that memorable day.

Enclosed is a statement of the casualties in this command.

Officers and men

Killed

Wounded

Missing

Total

Commissioned officers

1

6

4

11

Enlisted men

28

141

80

249

Total

29

147

84

260

Most respectfully, yours,
G. W. JONES,
Captain Company B, Comdg. 150th Pennsylvania Vols.

Colonel DANA,
Comdg. Second Brig., Third Div., First Army Corps.

from Official Records, Series 1, Volume 27, Part 1, Pages 346-358