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George West Transcript

Headquarters 17th Maine Reg’t Infantry
Camp de Trobriand Dec. 3rd, 1863

To John L. Hodsdon Adj’t General of Maine

I have the honor to report the following list of casualties in this Regiment on the 27th day of November 1863 – at the Battle of Orange Grove.

[List omitted]


Officers Killed 1 Wounded 2
Enlisted men Killed 6 Wounded 42 Missing 1
Total Loss Officers & men 52

The Regiment was really under fire not more than one hour in which time the entire loss was sustained.  The chief loss was confined to the three right companies as the enemy attempted to outflank us, and even did succeed in bringing our line under an enfilading fire. But we held our ground until the arrival of fresh troops, we having expended nearly all our ammunition. The action occurred in a thick growth of pine and hard wood, which was a considerable protection to both sides.  Capt. Sawyer, acting Major, was wounded in the early part of the engagement and lived but twenty-four hours.  Lieut. Brown, temporarily assigned to the command of Co. E. was killed instantly.  Both were gallant officers and had always proved themselves brave, but never more so than when they fell. Our conscripts did themselves great credit, and can now claim great credit as fighting men.

I would especially mention the following officers and sergeants: Capt. Charles P. Mattocks of Co. A, Captain Edwin B. Houghton of Co. H, 1st Lieut. Putnam I. Boothby, Acting Adjutant, 1st Lieut. Wm. H. Green, commanding Co. G, 1st Lieut. Sumner S. Richards, commanding Co. F, 2nd Lieut. Geo. A. Whidden of Co. H, Sergeants Benjamin Doe & Joseph Lake of  Co.A, Sergeant Robert A. Mathes of Co. K, Sergeant Wm. H. Sturgis of Co. H.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
George H. West
Col. Commanding 17th Me. Rg’t