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This second ridge declines again immediately west of the road, at the distance of or yards from which the edge of a wood runs parallel to it. This line would be Humphreys' first position of the day. Map 1 shows how Humphreys deployed Carr's Brigade in line of regiments as the first line, Brewster's Brigade in line of battalions yards in rear of the first line, and Burling's massed brigade as the third line yards in rear of the second line.

At the time this gap did not concern Humphreys because he considered this first position as a temporary deployment and, besides, he could plug the gap with troops from second and third line. Humphreys described the ground in front of this initial position as open, but he took steps to remove obstacles by having fences torn down.

Battery K, Fourth U. Furthermore, Humphreys ordered Colonel Brewster to strengthen the division skirmish line along the Emmitsburg Road in front of Carr's brigade. Brewster reports he was to hold the ground "at all hazards" and advanced the 73rd New York to positions around the Klingel house.

Just as these dispositions were complete Humphreys received an order from Sickles that would profoundly affect his ability to hold the ground along his division's sector later that afternoon. That order directed him to send Burling's Third Brigade to the First Division as a reserve to Birney's badly extended division. Cavada recorded in his diary that "Genl. Burling in rear of Birney's right and lead them to the place.

I placed the Brigade in a rocky wood of large growth about a third of a mile to the left of the "big barn", a crumbling stone wall about 3 ft high serving as a cover. This done I returned to our Div. Burling's regiments would be committed into combat in a piecemeal fashion by Birney prompting the following comment in Burling's after action report: "my command being now all taken from me and separated, no two regiments being together, and being under the command of the different brigade commanders to whom they had reported, I, with my staff, reported to General Humphreys for instructions, remaining with him for some time.

In the hour preceding P. Things began to heat up at P. An irate General Meade decided to ride to the left and examine Sickles advanced line for himself. Before departing headquarters at the Leister House, Meade ordered Sykes' Fifth Corps, the army reserve corps, to begin moving to the endangered left flank. Furthermore, as Meade and his staff entourage rode south along Cemetery Ridge on the way to an interview with Sickles near the Peach Orchard, he diverted his Topological Engineer, Brig.

Gouverneur K. Warren to the summit of Little Round Top to examine the situation there. Warren's timely action on Little Round Top made him a hero of the battle.

At the Peach Orchard salient, Meade had a spirited conversation with Sickles just as Longstreet's pre-infantry assault fire began to pour into the Third Corps positions. After Meade explained to Sickles that the Peach Orchard position was neutral ground, Sickles asked if he should begin moving his troops back.

Humphreys' troop dispositions were complete. Humphreys' ADCs carried orders to the brigade commanders to begin a forward movement of about yards with Carr's brigade advancing in line and Brewster's Excelsior brigade advancing in battalions in mass. As the brigades began moving forward, Humphreys received an order from Major Ludlow of Meade's staff. Some reference was made at the time, also, I think, to the intended occupation of that ground by the Fifth Corps.

In a second, the Division went about face; retrod the ground, by the right flank, that they had the moment before gone over by the left flank; and, then, moved forward to their position along the Emmitsburg-road. The whole thing was done with the precision of a careful exercise; the enemy's artillery giving effect to its picturesqueness. The Division, Brigade, and Regimental flags were flying of course. This divisional march and countermarch, so eloquently described by Humphreys, was the movement that the rest of the army perceived as the mass movement of the entire Third Corps to its advanced position at P.

Second Corps commander, Maj. Winfield S. Hancock, observing the spectacle of Humphreys' advance, was quick to recognize the danger of the move and quipped to his staff "wait a moment, you will soon see them tumbling back.

Humphreys advanced the division to its second position of the day in two lines see Map 2. Carr's brigade, the first line, was placed just behind the crest along which the Emmitsburg Road runs. The right of Carr's brigade line was held by the 26th Pennsylvania about yards south of the Codori barn and he extended his remaining regiments south along the Emmitsburg Road past the Klingel House. S Artillery equipped with six, twelve pound smoothbore "Napoleons" to the right of the Rogers House.

The response was for him to remain in place. Since Humphreys could not cover the entire division sector with only Carr's brigade, he extended his line by inserting Brewster's Second brigade regiments where needed. The 73rd New York was relieved by Carr's men at the Kingel Forum le meilleur regime secher and formed to the left of the second line.

The 74th New York was sent to support the right of Carr's line and formed up behind the 26th Pennsylvania. The 70th and th New York regiments remained on the second line as division reserve.

Between P. Humphreys heard the roar of musketry and cannon fire as Birney's division became decisively engaged with Hood's Division, the first echelon of Longstreet's Corps attack. During this time Humphreys says that the enemy made demonstrations to his front, but did not drive in his pickets.

He was probably observing McLaws' Division, Longstreet's second echelon, forming up prior to its attack at about P. About this time the 5th New Jersey, Colonel Sewell in command, of Burling's Brigade returned to Humphreys' control and he immediately sent it to replace the pickets in front of Graham's Brigade which overlapped the division left flank.

Within minutes of the deployment of the 5th New Jersey Humphreys received an urgent order from Sickles to reinforce Graham with a regiment. Although Colonel Sewell reported that the enemy was driving in the pickets and advancing in two lines Barksdale's Mississippi Brigade Humphreys obediently stripped his division reserve and sent the 73rd New York to Graham. Henry Christiancy to the Second Corps headquarters to request a reinforcing brigade from Hancock.

By this time Humphreys was well aware that Caldwell's Division had passed behind him on its way southward to shore up General Sickles' beleaguered left flank. Earlier, as he deployed along the Emmitsburg Road, Humphreys saw the immediate need for more artillery support because his division was receiving fire from Confederate batteries that were engaging Sickles artillery positions in the Peach Orchard. Sending ADC Lt.

McClellan found a better position for Seeley's battery by moving it to the left of the Rogers House. Artillery from the army artillery reserve assumed the previous firing positions of Seeley's Battery to the right of the Rogers House. As the enemy infantry began to advance on Humphreys' line, Seeley's and Tumball's batteries opened fire. Cavada observed that "Genl.

At this critical juncture General Sickles was severely wounded near the Trostle farm and relinquished command to General Birney whose own division was about to disintegrate. Birney later claimed that he personally observed a gap between Humphreys' left brigade Brewster and Graham's Brigade through which the enemy were about to pour.

Birney then ordered Humphreys to change his divisional front to cover this threat. Humphreys later reported that the gist of this verbal order was "to throw back my left, and form a line oblique to and in rear of the one I then held, and was informed that the First Division would complete the line the Round Top ridge. This I did under a heavy fire of artillery and infantry from the enemy, who now advanced on my whole front.

However, at this time Humphreys had to direct his personal attention to his left. He considered the division's right flank relatively secure because ADC LT Christiancy had returned from Hancock's Corps leading two regiments of reinforcements the 15th Massachusetts and the 82nd New York which were posted about feet north of the division right flank near the Cordori farm.

Increased pressure from Barksdale's and Wilcox's brigades of McLaws' Division along the picket line began to force Sewell's 5th New Jersey back to Humphreys' main line of resistance.

Capt Cavada vividly recorded what happened next:. The breeze blowing southward carried the heavy sulphurous smoke in clouds along the ground, at times concealing everything from my view. Our skirmishers now began a lively popping, the first drops of the thunder shower that was to break upon us. An aide from Genl. Birney rode up to Genl.

As everything was ready we sat quietly on our horses, dodging the shot and shell that skimmed along. Our skirmishers were hotly engaged now and moving back, slowly.

Our own batteries silently awaiting the assault. A copious shower of shell and canister from the enemy was followed by a diabolical cheer and yells, and "here they come" rang along our line. Despite intense pressure from Barksdale's Mississippians, Humphreys and his battle staff were able with great difficulty to form the new oblique line. Later, Humphreys modestly confided to a friend that this movement was accomplished in "pretty good order under heavy close fire of artillery and infantry In reality, however, the "close fire" was so intense that ADC Capt.

Henry Chester, seated on his horse immediately beside his Commanding General was mortally wounded, shot through the bowels.

While Humphreys supported Chester in his saddle, he ordered his son Henry to accompany Chester to the rear for medical aid. Henry Humphreys turned Chester over to an orderly and quickly returned to the firing line. Shortly after this incident Humphreys, having supervised the formation of the oblique line, was leaving the vicinity of the Peach Orchard, but found himself isolated about eighty yards between his line and the enemy advancing from Warfield Ridge and up the Emmitsburg Road.

Humphreys' horse was struck by fire and pitched forward and threw the general out of his saddle. One of the ADCs probably his son Henry offered his own wounded horse to Humphreys, who declined the offer. The ADC did retrieve the general's saddle pistol holsters but not the saddle bags containing some important military documents.

James F. Diamond, Sixth U. Cavalry, gave his horse to the General. The courageous Diamond was never seen again becoming one of the countless identified corpses on the battlefield. Humphreys nonchalantly described the situation in his battle report by stating that "my infantry now engaged the enemy's but my left was in the air although I extended it as far as possible with my Second Brigadeand, being the only troops on the field, the enemy's whole attention was directed to my division, which was forced back slowly, firing as they receded.

Humphreys now received a critical second order from one of Birney's staff officers ordering him to withdraw his division from the Emmitsburg Road line back to the Cemetery Ridge line. Carr's Brigade received the withdrawal order directly from the acting corps commander. Birney, having the broader perspective of a corps commander, realized that the Third Corps could no longer hold Sickles' advanced line because of Confederate successes on the far left at Devil's Den and in the Rose wheatfield.

Accordingly, he ordered Humphreys to withdraw. Humphreys, however, had the more narrow view of the action only along his division sector. Humphreys had great confidence in the fighting ability of his soldiers and preferred to fight it out along the Emmitsburg Road line. Paramount in his mind was the avoidance of heavy casualties that would result if his division had to withdraw in the face of an all-out Confederate assault.

Both of Humphreys' brigade commanders later sustained this opinion of the withdrawal order. Carr on the right would report that "notwithstanding my apparent critical position, I could and would have maintained my position but for an order received direct from Major General Birney, commanding the corps, to fall back to the crest of the hill in my rear.

At that time I have no doubt that I could have charged on the rebels and driven them in confusion, for my line was still perfect and unbroken, and my troops in the proper spirit for the performance of such a task. In retiring, I suffered a severe loss in killed and wounded.

Brewster concurred by stating in his battle report that "up to this time we had not been engaged at all, but now the troops on our left being obliged to fall back, the enemy advanced upon us in great force, pouring into us a most terrific fire of artillery and musketry, both upon our front and left flank.

Our men returned it with great effect, and for some time held the enemy in check, but the troops on our left being, for want of support, forced still further back, left us exposed to an enfilading fire before which we were obliged to fall back, which was done in good order, but with terrible loss of both officers and men.

But our fire had not checked them and our thin line showed signs of breaking. The battery enfilading us redoubled its fire, portions of Birney's command were moving to the rear broken and disordered. Our left regiments took the contagion and fled, leaving a wide gap through which the enemy poured in upon us. In vain did staff officers draw their swords to check the flying soldiers, and endeavor to inspire them with confidence, for a moment the route was complete. However, Carr's success along the Emmitsburg Road would be very short-lived.

Soon his regiments were involved in desperate firefights as they fell back slowly. For example, the 11th New Jersey, the left regiment of the brigade, was decisively engaged with Barsdale's Mississippians and, as a consequence, would sustain sixty percent casualties in the fight. Leadership losses were especially severe in this regiment with the regimental commander, Col. Robert McAllister, being wounded and Maj. Phillip J. Kearny being mortally wounded.

This regiment had five commanders that afternoon with command finally settling on the regimental adjutant, Lt. John Schoonover. I believe it to be almost an impossibility to rally the most staid veterans under such afire as our troops were then exposed to.

As Seeley observed, Humphreys was conspicuous by his inspiring presence all along the divisional front during its fighting withdrawal to Cemetery Ridge. With sheer force of will and iron discipline, and most probably with a fair share of swearing for which he was famous, Humphreys rode along the line ordering parries where needed and generally inspiring an orderly withdrawal of his brigades.

As motivational insurance Humphreys placed behind his line a detail of seventy soldiers from the Division Provost Guard with fixed bayonets to deter any unwounded shirkers or cowards from fleeing to the rear. The Provost Guard detail suffered heavy casualties performing this essential combat function.

Humphreys considered this fighting withdrawal as an orderly movement and not a rout! He wrote to his wife after the battle that "the fire we went through was hotter in artillery and as destructive as at Fredericksburg General Carr also praised Humphreys by recording that "I must be pardoned, perhaps, for referring in my report to the conspicuous courage and remarkable coolness of the brigadier-general commanding the division during this terrific struggle.

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His presence was felt by the officers and men, as the enthusiastic manner in which he was greeted will testify. Humphreys' personal courage and sheer will inspired his retreating regiments to maintain their unit integrity long enough to reach the main line of resistance along Cemetery Ridge see Map 3. The fact that the number of men captured in the withdrawal was low is a tribute to the tactical control exercised by Humphreys.

General Hancock rode by Humphreys' Division on his way to superintend the Third Corps front and later recalled that "there seemed nothing left of the division but a mass of regimental colors still waving defiantly.

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Hancock ordered Humphreys to form his division in the position left vacant by Caldwell. Humphreys and his staff officers immediately complied his Hancock's order and went about the business of reconstituting the regiments into brigade formations. Meanwhile, Hancock ordered Willard's brigade to plug the gap left by Birney's retreating division and he ordered the heroic First Minnesota Regiment into the teeth of Wilcox's final surge at Cemetery Ridge.

Humphreys' official report says. The infantry joined, and the enemy broke and was driven from the field, rapidly followed by Hancock's troops and the remnants of my two brigades, who took many prisoners and brought off two pieces of our artillery which had been left after all the horses were killed. Thomas Hogan, Third Excelsior, brought to me on the field the flag of the Eighth Florida Regiment, which he had captured. He deserves reward. July 2, action had ceased along Humphreys' front.

As Humphreys struggled to reform the division, the horrendous human cost to the division was tallied by his staff. Humphreys' battle report shows an aggregate infantry loss of 2, officers and 1, botox groupon san diego novembre killed, wounded, and missing soldiers. Chester mortally, and Lt. Humphreys shot through the arm.

To place this devastating total into a 20th century perspective, consider the fact that the historical average daily battlefield casualty rate for a modern American division in combat has ranged from 1. William J. Russell, Division Ambulance Officer, immediately began the gruesome and dangerous duty of recovering wounded soldiers for transport to the Third Corps Hospital.

July 3 would be a day of much movement, but little combat for Humphreys' Division. Before dawn Confederate artillery directed a brief but violent volley of fire at Humphreys' division sector. Just after sunrise Humphreys received orders from Birney to move his division to the left and rear probably behind Cemetery Ridge along the Taneytown Road for distribution of rations, small arms ammunition resupply, and collection of stragglers. By A. The occupation of this position was very brief because Humphreys soon received orders to shift his division to the left in support of the Fifth and Sixth Corps'.

Humphreys obediently moved his massed division into its fourth position of the day in the vicinity of the Wheatfield Road where it passes north of Little Round Top.

Humphreys was displaced again at about P. This time Humphreys was ordered to form in mass by battalions in the rear and the left of the Second Corps and to the right of some First Corps units and behind the massed artillery batteries along Cemetery Ridge. Although not actively engaged in this position during the repulse of Longstreet's assault, Humphreys' Division suffered some casualties to enemy artillery fire.

At dusk on July 3 Humphreys was ordered to return his division to its previous position in support of the Fifth and Sixth Corps' at the northern base of Little Round Top.

There his decimated division remained for the next three days, Julyand was, subsequently, involved in the cleanup of the battlefield which included the necessary details of burying the dead, bringing in additional wounded, and collecting abandoned weapons and equipment. The next day, July 8, heavy rains and impassible muddy roads forced Humphreys' Division to continue its road march south through Frederick, Maryland, bivouacking four miles short of Middletown.

Humphreys received orders at midnight to join the Headquarters of the Army of the Potomac to become Meade's Chief of Staff. Humphreys turned command of the Second Division over to General Carr and so ended his sojourn as a division commander. Humphreys must have been very pleased with his divisional staff's battle performance because he lavished praise on them in his official report.

The small band of ADCs deserved special praise because they faithfully performed their important communication and coordination duties all along the divisional front at great personal risk. Three of the four ADCs, including Humphreys' own son, were wounded one mortally in the course of action on July 2 and 3.

Humphreys lauded the performance of Maj. Charles Hamlin, AAG, who was responsible for coordinating the activities of the entire staff and insuring that sufficient orderlies and couriers were present during battle action to transmit the Commanding General's orders.

Cavada, AIG, performed admirably as a trouble shooter for Humphreys all along the division front. Russell, Provost Marshall, insured that a detail of men was always behind the main line of resistance to prevent shirkers from abandoning the line. Irwin, stepped up to capably supervise the medical treatment of the division wounded.

Behind the division three capable officers performed essential support functions. Weller Hoxie, Ordnance Officer, coordinated the resupply of small arms ammunition from the Third Corps ammunition train while Capt. James D. Earle, Commissary Officer, sought to obtain marching rations for the division from the army field trains. Finally, Capt. Thomas P. Early on January 2, the battalion reconnoitered prior to the assault and discovered that the Japanese position reached farther east than they had realized.

Colonel Cavenee, who maintained his regimental command with the 1st Battalion, realized that the enemy force was strongly fortified and decided to launch a coordinated attack on the morning of January 3. The 2nd Battalion, commanded by Lt. Arthur T. Sauser, was ordered west of the Japanese position to facilitate an envelopment of the enemy force, while the 1st Battalion was ordered to attack from the south.

An artillery concentration from Ngelengele provided support prior to the order to move out. At 10 a. Two hundred yards from the enemy positions, where patrols had roamed at will a day earlier, the attackers came under fire from snipers in the trees.

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To add to the problem, many of the Japanese flung short-fused charges of TNT from camouflaged positions under the roots of trees. Despite this harassment, both battalions managed to gain ground. When sniper fire became in tense, an effort was made to bypass it. This meant moving off the trails through the stifling jungle, where visibility was 20 feet at best and every foot of it hard going.

The 1st Battalion, attacking toward high ground under devastating small-arms fire, was stopped 80 yards short of the enemy position.

At that distance, the Japanese were difficult to pinpoint, but the broad front of enemy fire and the sound of automatic weapons gave some indication of their positions. As the 1st Battalion evacuated its wounded, the 2nd Battalion to the west was engaged in a desperate firefight. Its attack had started toward the enemy flank, but the impenetrable jungle growth, coupled with sniper fire, forced the 2nd to move its attack southward.

The 2nd Battalion overran the two forward enemy positions and wiped them out. Late afternoon found the 2nd Battalion on the west flank of the 1st Battalion. The 2nd fumed to face north and dug in for the night. Cavenee pondered the many problems that confronted him. Supplies were a major concern—his regiment had used up ammunition beyond the capacity of resupply and hand-carry, and K rations were short. The native bearers attached to the regiment could transport only a fraction of what was needed.

Air supply appeared to be the only solution. Cavenee ordered an area yards to the rear of the regiment cleared to receive an airdrop. The evacuation of wounded seemed an almost impossible task. The call for a stretcher promptly brought an aid man with a litter, but it took three more men to carry the wounded soldier to an aid station.

Evacuation to the coast from the aid station was a two-day trip one way and took eight men for each casualty. The demands of supply and evacuation were cutting appreciably into combat strength. To conserve troops, the decision was made to bury the dead nearby, to be disinterred and removed to the coast later. The closeness of the terrain prevented the use of heavy machine guns and mortars. Cannon and anti-tank companies also had to be held in coastal areas.

Every attempt to use mortars had resulted in tree bursts that imperiled friendly troops. Lack of fields of fire—with visibility of 20 feet at best—made the heavy surpoids et mal de dos horrible guns useless. Heavy weapons companies were withdrawn from combat and became responsible for receiving airdrops, resupplying front-line troops and evacuating casualties.

It was determined that the Japanese resistance consisted of about two infantry battalions. The enemy had no more than two small mortars, at least two machine guns and no artillery. At dawn on the morning of January 4, U.

The 1st and 2nd battalions of the th Infantry Regiment moved out to the north, but before they had advanced 40 yards, harassing fire from snipers in trees and the familiar crackle of the Japanese Nambu light machine gun began plucking at the underbrush. Fortunately, the Japanese fire was mostly inaccurate. The fighting quickly degenerated into skirmishing at squad level.

The close proximity of the opposing forces precluded the use of artillery. The snipers were searched out and shot. Individual enemy soldiers who were dug in were flanked and destroyed with hand grenades. Progress was slow. The th Infantry Regiment fought the rest of the day before nearing the main enemy position. With night coming, Cavenee had an important decision to make.

Should he pull back his troops to a safer position, or should he hold on where he was through the night? The Japanese defensive positions were mainly standing holes with log fronts and no overhead cover. They would be extremely vulnerable to artillery, but an effective barrage would require a pullback.

Cavenee decided to pull back and let the artillery go to work. The two battalions of the th had barely completed their shallow, two-man foxholes yards south of the Japanese positions when the mm howitzers of the th Field Artillery opened up.

Fragments flew over the heads of th troops all night. During lulls in artillery fire, the enemy returned to the treetops and poured down small-arms fire. Holding a light under his poncho, the colonel studied his map and messages. Fortunately, the supply situation was much improved. The airdrop had been effective, with a 95 percent recovery, and the heavy-weapons troops had overcome formidable obstacles in moving supplies forward.

Resupply was not without its problems, however. Only medical supplies had been dropped by parachute the rest had been pushed out of the hatches of Douglas C transports as they made a pass at feet. All of the communication-wire spools were damaged beyond use.

Two men had been killed and several more injured because they had not stayed clear of the drop area. Ingenuity aided in the evacuation efforts. Categories : Regiments of France.

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