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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 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
Page 866 N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXVII.

Third Georgia Regiment on both sides of the road, and, pushing them well to the front, those on the right soon became actively engaged with a considerable body of the enemy's infantry. The firing continuing very heavy on my right, I ordered Captain [George S.] Jones' company, Second Georgia Battalion, to the support of Company H, Third Georgia Regiment, then on the right. In a very few minutes the enemy began to give way, and Captain Jones continued to press them for some distance through the dense wood.

About the middle of the afternoon I received orders from General Anderson to move my brigade across and to the left of the Plank road, and, bearing well off from the road, endeavor to get upon the enemy's right flank and rear. I immediately commenced the movement,and, reaching the Gordonsville and Fredericksburg Railroad, I moved rapidly up that road, keeping Captain [R. J.] Wilson's company, Forty-eighth Georgia Regiment, and Captain [E. G.] Scruggs' company, Twenty-second [Forty-eighth] Georgia Regiment, well in advance as skirmishers.

About 6 p.m. I reached Welford's Iron Furnace, 1 1/2 miles southwest of Chancellorsville, where I found Major-General Stuart, who informed me that the enemy in considerable force were occupying the thick woods north of and near the furnace, in the direction of Chancellorsville. I immediately prepared to give him battle, and ordered Lieutenant-Colonel [R. W.] Carswell, commanding Forty-eighth Georgia Regiment, and Lieutenant-Colonel [J.] Wasden, commanding Twenty-second Georgia Regiment to move cautiosly forward through the almost impenetrable forest, with one company from each regiment thrown forward as skirmishers, and, finding the enemy, to press him vigorously. The Third Georgia Regiment and Second Georgia Battalion I held in reserve, to be used as occasion might require. Lieutenant-Colonels Carswell and Wasden moving rapidly forward, were soon engaged with a heavy force of the enemy's infantry, and the firing for a few minutes was very severe. Through this heavy fire Carswell and Wasden continued to press, and their gallant commands soon cleared the woods, and, reaching the edge of an open field, charged upon and drove the enemy up a high hill in rear of a farm-house, where he took shelter under cover of a dense pine thicket. Fearing lest my small command should fall into a Yankee trap, I ordered my line to halt, and dispatched a messenger to General Stuart, asking that he send me a portion of his artillery, under cover of whose fire I intended again to charge the enemy, unless our artillery should show them to be in very greatly superior force. Some time elapsed before our guns could be got into position, owing to the character of the ground and the very bad roads over which they had to pass, and it was nearly sunset before we opened our fire. Immediately the enemy responded with two heavy batteries one immediately in front and one upon our right, and very soon a third opened upon us from a high hill on our left. Our guns replied with spirit but owing to the superior number of guns opposed to them, and their advantageous position the result was not as favorable to us as I had hoped and anticipated. Ascertaining the locality of the enemy's guns, I directed Lieutenant-Colonel Carswell to move off by his left flank through a deep ravine near the edge of the field in which the enemy's guns were posted, and, gaining the right and rear of the enemy's battery upon our left, to charge upon and take it. But owing to the near approach of night, and the dense undergrowth through which he had to pass, it was found and the dense undergrowth through which he had to pass, it was found immpossible to accomplish my object, and at dark the firing ceased on both sides, and I withdrew my men; and, in obedience to orders from Lieutenant-General Jackson (received through Major-General Stuart),


Page 866 N. VA., W. VA., MD., AND PA. Chapter XXXVII.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
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