Repulse of the Rebels - Union Army Master of the Field - Capture of the Rebel Gen. Archer and his Whole Brigade - Gettysburg Shelled During the Action - Generals Reynolds and Paul Killed - Col. Lyle and Gen. Baxter Reported Killed - Col. Roy Stone Missing- Gens. Wadsworth, Doubleday and Steinwehr Reported Wounded.
We published yesterday some particulars of a great battle fought on Wednesday last near Gettysburg, Pa., and today give further highly interesting particulars. The following is from letters in the Philadelphia Inquirer:
Commencement of the battle.
FREDERICK, MD., July 2. - A severe battle was fought yesterday, about a mile and a hail north of Gettysburg, Pa., between the First and Eleventh Corps of the Army of the Potomac and a large force of the rebel army, supposed to belong to Longstreet and Hill's Corps. The battle commenced about ten o'clock in the morning. The First and Eleventh Corps were advancing on the Chambersburg pike beyond Gettysburg, when they en-countered the rebel pickets about a mile outside of the town. The first intimation of the close proximity of the rebel troops was a shot from one of their advanced pickets, which struck Major General Reynolds in the head, killing him instantly. At the time General Reynolds was riding at the head of his corps, which was marching along the turnpike. Major General Doubleday, commanding the Third Division, then took command of the corps. The First Division, Gen. Wadsworth, took position behind a stone fence running through a wheat and corn field, in front of the enemy, and at short musket range. The rebels in large force charged up this line and compelled it to leave the cover of the fence and fall back some distance, after righting gallantly. The second division of the same corps, General Robinson, came up to the assistance of the first division, and succeeded in drving the rebels from the stone fence and retaking it.
Repulse of the Rebels.
The rebels made another effort to retake the fence but were repulsed with heavy loss. They then retired to the woods and a desultory fire of skirmishes and artillery was kept up till towards evening, when the fighting ceased.
In the action Brigadier-General Paul, commanding a brigade in the First Corps, was killed, and Generals Wadsworth and Doubleday are reported wounded. Col. P. Lyle, of the Ninetieth Pennsylvania, is reported killed. Colonel Roy Stone, of the Fifteenth Pennsylvania, commanding Second Brigade, Third Division, First Army Corps, is reported to have been wounded and placed in a barn, which afterwards took fire from the shells, and his fate is uncertain. Col. Root, of the Ninety-fourth New York, is reported wounded. Gen. Baxter, commanding brigade of the First Corps, reported killed.
The Eleventh Corps suffers.
The Eleventh corps, General Howard, was in position on the left first, and received a severe fire from the rebels. Gen. Steinwehr, commanding a division in this corps, is reported wounded.
The chief loss was in the First corps, which suffered severely both in officers and men.
The rebels shelled Gettysburg during the day, and the Seminary outside the town and five or six other buildings were burned.
The enemy foiled.
Towards evening the enemy made an attempt to flank us on the right, which was foiled by timely measures.
A whole rebel brigade captured.
They also made an effort to capture a wagon train on the left and rear, and in attempting this movement nearly a whole brigade of rebels were captured, among them Brig. Gen. Archer, of the rebel army, formerly of the U.S. army.
Our wounded are at Gettysburg, and are well taken care of. Our forces at Gettysburg were largely reinforced last night, and the battle will probably be resumed today. It is said Longstreet's and Hill's troops were both engaged yesterday, and would be reinforced by Ewell's corps during the night.
I have just returned from the rear of Gettysburg, and officers and soldiers who came from there this morning report that no fighting had taken place up to ten o'clock, beyond occasional artillery firing.
Upwards of one thousand rebel prisoners passed through Taneytown this morning, on their way to the rear, General Archer among them.
General Meade will undoubtedly push the enemy rapidly. Our army is in fine condition, and will fight well.
Further Highly Interesting Details.
We make available the following highly interesting extracts from a letter in the New York Herald, describing the battle:
At about half past two o'clock while the batteries exchanged a heavy fire and some sharp musketry woke up the echoes on the right, the rebels advanced in heavy force against the First corps, which slowly retreated from the hills beyond the valley to the high ground near the seminary, where it prepared to make all the resistance it was capable of. It was reinforced there by some dismounted dragoons, and fought in the open field; for, though some rail fences were thrown down across the front of our line, they afforded no cover. From the woods beyond the farmhouse, and across the open space, a rebel force of perhaps three large brigades advanced handsomely in line of battle, while the rebel batteries near the general centre shelled our position hotly to cover the advance.
On came the line, right up within short range of our position, when it was opened upon with a fire so sharp and well served as to stagger and then completely repulse it. Backward went the line that came forward in such good order, a mere mass of stragglers, each of whom made the best of his way across the plain.
While the musketry was very hot in front of General Doubleday, a party of about one hundred rebels stole through the woods well up on Doubleday's left flank, and fired a large barn, one of those immense magazines of breadstuffs that in Pennsylvania so overpeer the comparatively small farmhouses. An immense black column of smoke soon began to ascend from the roof, breaking out presently into a white, sulphurous cloud, and then into a fierce red blaze. Under cover of this fire the rebel skirmishers exchanged numerous shots with a line of skirmishers from the cavalry on our extreme left. Repulsed, but not vanquished, the rebel line was reformed and reinforced; and now, for a second time, came on a force nearly twice as great as at first. Once more, also, the batteries threw shells answered by our batteries on the left, and also by batteries of ours on the extreme right, which at this time threw shell at the position of the enemy's centre. Once more the packed, rapid rattle of our file fire broke out, and once more the rebel line was broken and went to the right about in rout.
There is a mysterious fatality connected with the third time; and so, after a lull and period of com-parative quiet of twenty minutes, onward for a third time came the rebels, quite as orderly as before, their line of skirmishers firing as they came on. In so great force was this line that it completely over-lapped the line of the First corps on both flanks. Two brigades on the right were quite out of ammunition, and the order was given to retreat on the town; and our boys accordingly retreated in good order, while the rebels rushed forward with yells to our position. On came the enemy's fourth line, further to the right of the third, in good order, skirmishers ahead, until the position at the Seminary was reached, when they came forward with a rush, and occupied a hill we had deemed it worthwhile not to hold after the other was taken. On also came another line in support behind this, and our cavalry on the extreme left began to retire.
At this moment the field presented a true war picture. Across the fields to the right came the rebel line, with colors which fluttered in the pleasant breeze; in the centre were two farm houses, out-houses and barns in flames, and on the left the column of cavalry in retreat, while beyond all the rays of the sun beat down through the showery clouds and gilded every object with a peculiarly golden light, and over the heavens to the eastward stretched a magnificant rainbow.
The new position of the third corps was at a line of stone wall south west of the town, along the slope of a hill on which is a cemetery when the first corps retired to the town the left of the eleventh was uncovered, and a heavy advance completely on its right flank at the same time compelled it to retire. It affords me pleasure to say that this corps is reported to have fought well.
After our retirement on the town the rebel advance was not pressed further. And so ended a battle that was brought on in the most rash manner, yet which was well fought against a largely superior force and gotten out of at last much better than we could have expected to get out.
Latest from the Battle Field.
Another correspondent of the Inquirer furnishes the following detailed account:
ON BATTLE FIELD NEAR GETTYSBURG, Wednesday, July 1. - Today, and on Pennsylvania soil, has been fought one of the most desperate and bloody battles of this accursed rebellion.
We have attacked a force honestly our superior in numbers - a force not worn down with nineteen days of rapid marching in heat and rain, dust and mud and one splendidly positioned and entrenched. Against all these advantages and disadvantages has a portion of our war-worn, battle scarred veterans struggled, never flinching or skulking from any duty assigned them, but making desperate bayonet charges, rushing into the very jaws of death, and although suffering severely, yet have they managed to seriously cripple the enemy, and at the same time retain possession of the town of Gettysburg, which they sought to repossess. In our letter written yesterday we told of the gallant charge of Buford's division of cavalry, when they succeeded in driving from the town a large number or rebels, of the same arm of service.
This morning early the First and Eleventh corps, which had been during the night encamped near Emmitsburg, advanced, the First corps marching in the following order: First division, under General Wadsworth; Third division, General Doubleday; these followed by five full batteries under Colonel Wainwright; bringing up the rear with the really splendid division of General Robinson; this corps having been in the advance during the whole time of our march from Falmouth, were the first force of infantry to reach Gettysburg, and, to come up with and fight the enemy.
During the day this corps had been under the direction of Major General Doubleday, General Reynolds being in command of the right wing, comprising the First, Third Eleventh and Twelfth corps.
When some three miles from town, and while quietly marching, along the sound of heavy and rapid cannon firing was heard coming from the direction beyond Gettysburg. Almost at the same instant Captain Mitchell, a gallant aide upon General Reynolds' staff, came dashing down the road, with orders to the various division commanders to push forward their divisions as rapidly as possible. The order was given to double-quick, which was instantly obeyed, and kept up until the intervening space, where our batteries were engaged was passed over. These batteries, two in number, were a part of the artillery belonging to General Buford's division, and were stationed some half a mile south of the Gettysburg Theological Seminary, while the opposing forces were stationed and snugly entrenched up on the east side of Marsh creek, and at about the same distance from the Seminary as were our own forces.
The latter was the first to open fire, and were for a time compelling our batteries to retire from their position. This they were quietly doing and in good order, when the division of General Wadsworth came to their support, the two able regiments, the Second Wisconsin and Twenty-fourth Michigan Regiments rushing up and driving from in front of them the infantry force who were making desperate efforts to capture the pieces. When these supports arrived the batteries again took up a commanding position, which they were enabled to hold during the day.
In the rear of the position so taken up, and to the right, the Division of General Wadsworth was drawn up in line of battle, with the Division of General Robinson holding the second line. At the moment that these formations were completed, the rebels, emboldened by their partial success in driving from position the batteries, attempted another charge, with the object of seizing the pieces, when the brigades of the Second Division, with fixed bayonets, made a charge upon them, and such as were not killed were taken prisoners. Two entire regiments - a Tennessee and Mississippi regiment - were then "bagged."