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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 815 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

and I did not, therefore, know till all was over that the approach it had guarded was left undefended.

The enemy, baffled on the left, now massed in and below the town. His batteries played vigorously, and his columns advanced below, toward Howison's. Our guns upon the heights now opened upon these with fine effect, and soon caused them to disperse and lie concealed. At the same time force seemed accumulating in the town, and batteries there poured a warm fire upon Marye's Hill. Regarding this as now the weak point most likely to be assailed in a short time, I dispatched an aide to General Hays, to inform him that if he could be spared from the left he had better direct a part, at least, of his force to Marye's Hill. That position the enemy soon attempted, as in the former battle, by direct march toward the stone wall. They were handsomely repulsed, with loss, by combined fire of infantry and artillery. Thus far, at all point they had been driven back, and about the same time the troops were all encouraged by messages sent by yourself of intelligence from General Lee of a glorious victory already won over Hooker, and hoped to be made complete that day. Had the guns sent to the rear been at hand and in position, the enemy would have probably been wholly repulsed on this line. We were, however, at the critical point too weak in guns as in infantry. Another combined attack was made by columns along the streets, and by a line of battle toward the stone fence, and also another toward Howison's house. The gun to play upon one of the streets had been removed, the remainder, supporting the small force of infantry, could not repel the attack at all points, and after a brief contest we had the mortification of seeing a sudden swarming of the enemy behind and around our guns on Marye's Hill. The guns on Lee's Hill I immediately caused to be directed on the enemy, then possessing Marye's, and, this done, proceeded to get my horse, hitherto tied in the ravine behind. I then approached the Telegraph road, and caused two guns of Patterson's battery, free to be thus used, to be hastened forward, also to open upon Marye's. Just at this moment Captain Richardson, of the Washington Artillery, sent up by you from your line, arrived and reported. I immediately directed his guns in like manner to form in battery on the brow near the Telegraph road, and open on Marye's Hill. This was done under Colonel Walton's supervision. Meanwhile the enemy advanced his batteries in the plain and poured upon our lines a sever fire. His infantry also came forward in large numbers, although fired upon with considerable vigor by Patterson's guns on Howison's Hill, and by Carlton's, farther to the right. Overpowered, our gallant little infantry force had to recede. On the left of the Telegraph road, near the batteries the firing, General Barksdale formed a regiment in line of battle, but, after the infantry in front of them had been driven back, the guns on Lee's Hill and on the right had no support.

Before long the guns on the Telegraph road had to retire, because the enemy, under cover of ravines on the right and left, approached so near as to render the position untenable. Captain Richardson here lost one gun from the shooting down of its horses. Captain Fraser subsequently brought off his guns from Lee's Hill, having fired canister till the enemy was almost upon him, and at last taking with him the body of the gallant Lieutenant Habersham, who fell just as the guns were being removed, and saving one gun, who limber was blown up, by substituting, at so critical a moment, the caisson limber. As these guns passed to the rear, I proceeded slowly also along the Telegraph road, having remained some time on the hill the signal station. About


Page 815 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
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