eHistory logo Primary Sources Section
Primary Sources Home | Search eHistory

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

You are currently in Volume XXV | Pages range from 1 to 1142

Go to Page (current volume):  
Index | Previous | Next
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
Page 799 Chapter XXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

others were killed and a number wounded. General himself received a severe injury, and was borne from the field. The command devolved upon Major-General Hill, whose division, under General Heth, was advanced to the line of intrenchments which had been reached by Rodes and Colston. A furious fire of Artillery was opened upon them by the enemy, under cover of which his infantry advanced to the attack. They were handsomely repulsed by the Fifty-fifth Virginia Regiment, under Colonel [Francis] Mallory, who was killed while bravely leading his men. General Hill was soon afterward disabled, and Major-General Stuart, who had been directed by General Jackson to seize the road to Ely's Ford, in rear of the enemy, was sent for to take command. At this time the right of Hill's division was attacked by the column of the enemy already mentioned as penetrated to the furnace, which had been replaced to Chancellorsville to avoid being cut off by the advance of Jackson. This attack was gallantly met and repulsed by the Eighteenth and Twenty-eighth and a portion of the Thirty-third North carolina Regiments, Lane's brigade.

Upon General Stuart's arrival, soon afterward, the command was turned over to him by General Hill. He immediately proceeded to reconnoiter the ground and make himself acquainted with the disposition of the troops. The darkness of the night and difficulty of moving through the woods and undergrowth rendered it advisable to defer further operations until morning, and the troops rested on their arms in line of battle. Colonel [S.] Crutchfield, chief of artillery of the troops, was severely wounded, and Colonel [E. P.] Alexander, senior artillery officer present, was engaged during the entire night in selecting positions for our batteries.

A soon as the sound of cannon gave notice of Jackson's attack on the enemy's right, our troops in front of Chancellorsville were ordered to press him strongly on the left, to prevent re-enforcements being sent to the point assailed. They were directed not to attack in force unless a favorable opportunity should present itself, and, while continuing to cover the roads leading from their respective positions toward Chancellorsville, to incline to the left so as to connect with Jackson's right as he closed in upon the center. These orders were well executed, our troops advancing up to the enemy's intrenchments, while several batteries placed with good effect upon his lines until prevented by the increasing darkness.

Early on the morning of the 3rd, General Stuart renewed the attack upon the enemy, who had strengthened his right during the night with additional breastworks, while a large number of guns, protected by intrenchments, were posted so as to sweep the woods through which our troops had to advance. Hill's division was in front, with Colston in the second line and Rodes in the third. The second and third lines soon advanced to the support of the first, and the whole became hotly engaged. The breastworks at which the attack was suspended the preceding evening were carried by assault under a terrible fire of musketry and artillery. In rear of these breastworks was a barricaded, from which the enemy was quickly driven. The troops on the left of the Plank road, pressing through the woods, attacked and broke the next line, while those on the right bravely assailed the extensive earthworks, behind which the enemy's artillery was posted. Three times were these works carried, and as often were the brave assailants compelled to abandon them - twice by the regiment of the troops on their left, who fell back after a gallant struggle with superior numbers, and once by a movement of the enemy on the right, caused by the advance of General Anderson.


Page 799 Chapter XXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
Index | Previous | Next
This symbol external link icon indicates an external link
All images and content are the property of eHistory at The Ohio State University unless otherwise stated.
Copyright © 2014 OSU Department of History. All rights reserved. [citation and copyright information]
eHistory icon