Thursday, May 8, 2014

Clash at Port Walthall

Sunday, May 8, 1864

The Thirteenth New Hampshire departed from their camp at Yorktown on Wednesday, May 4. At 4:00 PM the Thirteenth boarded the steamer "S. R. Spaulding" and sailed to Fortress Monroe. The next morning, at 7:00 A.M. on May 5, they entered the James River, arriving at Bermuda Hundred by early evening. After nightfall the Thirteenth New Hampshire disembarked and bivouacked at Bermuda Hundred. At 6:00 A.M. on May 6 the Thirteenth marched six miles to a spot near Petersburg, making evening camp three miles from Port Walthall and the Richmond and Petersburg Railroad. The next morning the Thirteenth New Hampshire exchanged fire with a South Carolina brigade led by Confederate General Johnson Hagood near Port Walthall. The Thirteenth lost only one man during the encounter. Today the Thirteenth rested while the army remained on alert. At 4:00 P.M. the Thirteenth received orders to march in the morning with three days rations.1

1S. Millett Thompson, Thirteenth Regiment of New Hampshire Volunteer Infantry in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865 : A Diary Covering Three Years and a Day (Boston, Massachusetts: Houghton, Mifflin and Company, 1888), 255-62.

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