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The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

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OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 12, Part 2 (Second Manassas)
Page 711 Chapter XXIV. CAMPAIGN IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA.

advancing to close quarters with the enemy. These two brigades suffered very severely, Lawton's loss being quite heavy. General Ewell himself received a very serious wound in the knee while leading one of the regiments near the close of the fight.

Just before dark I received an order from General Jackson, through one of his staff officers, to advance to the front, and immediately put my brigade in motion, followed by Hays' brigade, and while advancing I received another order to send two regiments to the right to General Jackson, and detached the Forty-fourth Virginia and Forty-ninth Virginia, under Colonel William Smith, for that purpose. On arriving at the railroad cut I found it so deep that I could not pass over it, and I moved by the right flank until I reached a ravine with high embankments on both sides and an interval between, through which I moved by flank, forming by file into line in front of it. This movement brought me near the left of the position to which Trimble's brigade had advanced, and during it the brigade was exposed to a galling fire of shells and canister. By the time I had succeeded in forming my line in front of the railroad the enemy was retiring, and it having become dark and impossible to tell whether I should encounter enemies or friends, I advanced no farther, and Hays' brigade was halted on the railroad. In this position the two brigades lay on their arms during the night. A short distance in front of me General Ewell was lying wounded, and I had him carried to the hospital. Lawton's and Trimble's brigades lay on their arms a short distance to my right, near the points where they were at the close of the fight.

Early next morning the division, then under command of Brigadier-General Lawton, was formed in line on a ridge perpendicularly to the railroad track, with the right resting on the Warrenton turnpike and facing toward Groveton. In a short time thereafter I received an order from General Jackson to move with my own and Hays' brigade to a ridge west of the turnpike and the railroad track, so as to prevent the enemy from flanking our forces on the right, a movement from the direction of Manassas indicating that purpose having been observed. In making this movement two of my regiments, the Thirteenth and Thirty-first Virginia Regiments, were detached by General Jackson and placed in a piece of woods on the east of the turnpike to observe the movements of a body of the enemy that was moving toward our right. I formed my own and Hays' brigade in line on the ridge indicated, placing them under cover in the woods, and advanced skirmishers to the railroad track and posted a detachment on my right flank, so as to prevent any surprise from that direction. Johnson's battery was also placed in position so as to command my front.

In the mean time our whole line of battle had been so modified as to place it along the railroad track, and Lawton's and Trimble's brigades were moved so as to conform to this new disposition. My own and Hays' brigades thus constituted the extreme right, being thrown back a little in rear of the direction of the main line. The Thirteenth Virginia Regiment (under Colonel Walker) and the Thirty-first (under Colonel [John S.] Hoffman) by skirmishing kept the body of the enemy's infantry which has been mentioned in check until the head of General Longstreet's corps made its appearance on the Warrenton turnpike from the direction of Gainesville. When this corps had advanced sufficiently far to render it unnecessary for me to remain longer in my position or for the Thirteenth and Thirty-first Regiments to remain where they were, I recalled them and moved to the left, for the purpose of rejoining the rest of the division. I found General Lawton with his


Page 711 Chapter XXIV. CAMPAIGN IN NORTHERN VIRGINIA.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 12, Part 2 (Second Manassas)
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