Battery B, Fourth U. S. Artillery
The author of this account, Augustus Buell served as an orderly delivering messages to the artillery.
As such he was often on the front line and had knowledge of the movements of the troops and the batteries brought to support them.
He observed and recorded many of Chamberlain movements, his account agreeing with Chamberlain's.
But, as they say, you can't please them all, for however brave, Buell found Chamberlain lacking in other
areas, describing him as,
"a cold, unlovable man, very brave and all that, but not dashing either in appearance or manner.
He always reminded me of a professor of mathematics we had in college. Still, he was a gallant officer,
and had more than once been desperately wounded while leading his troops in the most deadly assaults." pg 322
It appears the only direct contact he had with Generals was when he delivered orders.
In Chamberlain's own accounts he often appears to be brisk with staff officers durring the heat of battle,
this probably accounts for Buell's impressions.
Chamberlain writes of his encounter with this battery in, The Passing of the Armies
where he describes after being wounded, covered in blood and without his cap, the battery finally arrives,
"I rode out to meet them, pointing out the ground. Mitchell's answering look had a mixed expression, suggestive of a smile.
I did not see anything in the situation to smile at, but he evidently did. I should have remembered my remarkable personal appearance.
He did not smile long. The colloquy was short..."
As for being dashing, Chamberlain was never a fan of flashy epaulets or sashes, but took pride in a more humble
appearance. (He was a bit more dashing before his wounding as photos will show.)
Fashion was rather important to Buell, who took note of how every officer was dressed in his book.
The modern reader might smile a bit at his description of Mitchell,
"What a picture he was! His fine features aglow with the light of battle,
his dark-grey eyes fairly black and flashing! He wore a splendid new uniform glittering in scarlet braid,
a crimson sash, and morocco boots that came above his knees" pg 337
General Griffin apparently did not share Buell's tastes, for as Gerrish relates in
The Blue and Grey
one page 405 when General Bartlett rode up in a new uniform he quipped,
"Well, Bartlett, when will the rest of the circus arrive?"
Page 229 - 233 describes the June 18th attack at Petersburg where Chamberlain was wounded. This description is also copied into the
History of the Fifth Massachusetts Battery, pg 877
Page 335 describes the battle of Quaker road where Battery B was under Chamberlain's command.