from The Worcester Spy, October 21, 1863, (Volume 92 # 44), 
The Battle of Bristow Station

The battle near Bristow Station, last Wednesday, between a portion of the second corps of Gen. Meade’s army and a portion of Gen. A. P. Hill’s corps of rebels, was really a heavy engagement. The rebels were over twelve thousand strong, but they were badly beaten. A letter in the New York Herald gives an account of the battle, from which we make a few extracts. The first onslaught of the rebels was swiftly repulsed by the divisions of Gens.Webb and Hayes, aided by the artillery. It was in this part of the conflict that the rebel battery was captured. The tremendous fire of our troops drove the rebels into the woods. Ten men from each regiment were then detailed to bring off the guns left by the rebels. The Herald letter says:” The selected men went off in the direction of the prizes, reached them, seized them, turned them towards the foe, firing a parting salute from such as the enemy, in his haste, had left loaded, then commenced dragging them away by hand. They had not gone far however, when the rebels flocked out of the woods and came down at a charge towards them, seeing which, the boys dropped the artillery, grasped their smaller arms and drove the butternuts back into the pines. they then came back and dragged off their captures in safety. I have heard some cheering on election nights, but I never heard such a yell of exultation as rent the air when the rebel guns, caissons and equipments were brought across the railroad track to the line of our infantry.”

There were six of the guns, but one of them, was much too injured to be removed.. the rebels next massed troops for a charge to break our line, but the artillery and infantry fire instantly drove them back. They could not “face the music”. The next movement of the battle was one in which the Massachusetts 15th was engaged. the letter says;--- “After this maneuver a second line of skirmishers was thrown forward to the brow of the hill skirting the river, and two regiments of North Carolina troops the 26th, and 28th, came charging on our extreme right, over the railroad near the bridge. This post was held by Col. Heath, commanding the brigade which was the first of the second division, and consisting of the 19th Maine, 15th Massachusetts, 1st Minnesota, and 82d New York. our boys waited for their ‘erring southern breathren’ who came on with a yell, until they reached the track of the railroad, when a volley, and another and another, sent them home at a pace that defies illustration. The brigade which was commanded by brig. Gen. Heth, broke out and fled, hiding themselves behind the rocks and bushes along the stream. The brigade od North Carolinians was Pettugrew's old brigade, and the men prided themselves on their prowess. But the men opposed to them were to well versed in fighting to be intimidated, and they gave the lauded heroes the best turn in the shop. It was laughable to see the extricate themselves from their dilemma.”

Over five hundred rebels were captured at this time; and two rebel flags were captured one by the New York 82d regiment, and one by the 19th Maine. in the whole fight some 750 rebels were captured and about 450 killed or wounded. The 15th Massachusetts had two killed and eight wounded, among them Lieut. Stevens, slightly. The other names are not reported. the 82d new York had seven killed and eighteen wounded; the 19th Maine one killed and twelve wounded; the 1st Minnesota, one killed and twenty wounded. The whole number killed and wounded on our side is said to be about two hundred.


15th Massachusetts VI