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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 19, Part 1 (Antietam)
Page 147 Chapter XXXI. GENERAL REPORTS.

brigade at Hagerstown, had hurried to the assistance of Hill, and reached the scene of action between 3 and 4 p. m. His troops, much exhausted by a long, rapid march and the heat of the day, were disposed on both sides of the turnpike. General D. R. Jones, with three of his brigades-those of Pickett (under General Garnett), Kemper, and Jenkins (under Colonel Walker)- together with Evans' brigade, was posted along the mountain on the left; General Hood, with his own and Whiting's brigade (under Colonel Lae), Drayton's, and D. R. Jones' (under Colonel G. T. Anderson), on the right. Batteries had been placed by General Hill in such positions as could be found, but the ground was unfavorable for the use of artillery. The battle continued with great animation until night. On the south of the turnpike the enemy was driven back some distance, and his attack on the center repulsed with loss. His great superiority of numbers enabled him to extend beyond both of our flanks. By this means he succeeded in reaching the summit of the mountain beyond our left, and pressing upon us heavily form that direction, gradually forced our troops back after an obstinate resistance. Darkness put an end to the contest.

The effort to force the passage of the mountains had failed, but it was manifest that without re-enforcements we could not hazard a renewal of the engagement, as the enemy could easily turn either flank. Information was also received that another large body of Federal troops had during the afternoon forced their way through Crampton's Gap, only 5 miles in rear of McLaws. Under these circumstances, it was determined to retire to Sharpsburg, where we would be upon the flank and rear of the enemy should he move against McLaws, and where we could more readily unite with the rest o the army. This movement was efficiently and skillfully covered by the cavalry brigade of General Fitzhugh Lee, and was accomplished without interruption by the enemy, who did not appear on the west side of the pass at Boonsborough until about 8 a. m. on the following morning. The resistance that had been offered to the enemy at Boonsborough secured sufficient time to enable General Jackson to complete the reduction of Harper's Ferry.

On the afternoon of the 14th, when he found that the troops of Walker and McLaes were in position to co-operate in the attack, he ordered General A. P. Hill to turn the enemy left flank and enter Harper's Ferry. Ewell's division (under General Lawton) was ordered to support Hill, while Winder's brigade, of Jackson's division (under Colonel Grigsby), with a battery of artillery, made a demonstration on the enemy's right near the Potomac. The rest of the division was held in reserve. The cavalry under major Massie was placed on the extreme left, to prevent the escape of the enemy. Colonel Grigsby succeeded in getting possession of an eminence on the left, upon which two batteries were advantageously posted. General A. P. Hill, observing a hill on the enemy's extreme left occupied by infantry without artillery, and protected only by an abatis of felled timber, directed General Pender, with his own brigade and those of [General] Archer and Colonel Brocken brought, to seize the crest, which was done with slight resistance. At the same time he ordered Generals Branch and Gregg to march along the Shenandoah, and, taking advantage of the ravines intersecting its steep banks, to establish themselves on the plain to the left and rear of the enemy's works. This was accomplished during the night. Lieutenant-Colonel Walker, chief of artillery of A. P. Hill's division, placed several batteries on the eminence taken by General Pender, and, under the directions of Colonel Crutchfield, General Jackson's chief of artillery, ten guns belonging to Ewell's division were posted on the east


Page 147 Chapter XXXI. GENERAL REPORTS.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 19, Part 1 (Antietam)
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