Cedar Creek After Action Report, Commander, Battery M, 5th U.S. Field Artillery (Artillery Brigade, 6th Corps) (OR, 43, 278-9)




October 26, 1864


SIR: In accordance with orders, dated headquarters Artillery Brigade, Sixth Corps, October 22, 1864, I have the honor to report that the battery under my command went into position on the morning of the 19th instant fifty yards to the right and front of the battery camp. The fire of the battery was delayed fully ten minutes by the train of wagons passing to its front. This obstruction removed, it opened with spherical case at a range of 600 yards. Second Lieut. Frederick Robinson, in charge of left section, was wounded after the third discharge of his guns and left for the rear. The guidon bearer was also wounded at this time. The heavy fire to which the battery was subjected made it necessary to retire to another position All the guns were successfully drawn off with the exception of one, which was abandoned owing to the wounding of the sergeant, gunner, two cannoneers, and killing of lead driver and four horses. This gun was shortly after recaptured and drawn off by the infantry. The right and center sections were again placed in position, a short distance to the rear of the original line, under a heavy fire from the front and left flank. This line was untenable; the rapid wounding of men and horses required its abandonment. Second Lieut. Henry M. Baldwin was ordered to take charge of two guns, and Sergt. D. B. Yoder a third, each having but two horses left to the limbers for removal to the rear. Two of the three guns were successfully withdrawn; the third, owing to both of the horses being wounded, fell into the hands of the enemy. Second Lieut. H. M. Baldwin, the guidon bearer, and guidon were captured at the same time. Lieutenant Baldwin was wounded after his surrender of self and gun. The right gun of right section, under charge of Corpl. W. H.H. Kennedy, at same time acting as gunner, and right gun of center section, under charge of Sergt. Henry Beckhurdt, with Corpl. Charles A. Knorr as gunner, were brought into action for the third time, using canister with good effect. These two guns were the last to leave the field.

I would respectfully call the attention of the colonel commanding Artillery Brigade to the brave and gallant conduct of Second Lieut. H. M. Baldwin throughout the entire engagement; also to the cool bravery of Sergeant Beckhardt, Corpls. William H.H. Kennedy, Charles A. Knorr, in fighting their guns to the last moment up to threaten of capture; and to Sergt. Daniel B. Yoder in successfully saving his gun from capture.


The return of casualties, [not attached] material, and ammunition expended, also how lost, accompanies this report.


I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant


Captain, Fifth U.S. Artillery, Commanding Battery M.


Lieut. E. N. WHITTIER,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., Artillery Brigade, Sixth Corps.