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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 871 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

cellorsville. Upon consultation, we concluded to leave five companies of my brigade (Nineteenth Mississippi Regiment) and one regiment of General Mahone's brigade to watch and defend the United States Ford, while we moved our brigades to Chancellorsville. On reaching that place, we posted my brigade on the right and left of the Plank road at Chancellorsville, and General Mahone's brigade in Ballard's and Nixley's fields, half a mile from Chancellorsville, on the Ely road.

We remained in this position until about 7 o'clock the next morning, the 30th, when we were directed by the major-general commanding, who reached Chancellorsville about 12 a.m., to move our commands back to a position where the Mine road crosses the old Pike and Plank road. We remained in this position until the next morning about 9 o'clock, May 1, when I was ordered to advance my brigade up the Plank road. After moving about 2 miles, I formed a line of battle in Aldrich's field, between the Plank road and old Pike, and sent out the Twelfth [Mississippi] Regiment as skirmishers, moving the other three regiments, forward as fast as the skirmishers advanced. The advanced line of skirmishers soon encountered the enemy, when I advanced another line, and we drove the enemy's skirmishers soon encountered the enemy, when I advanced another line, and we drove the enemy's skirmishers back in gallant style until we encountered the enemy in heavy force, drawn up in line of battle on the Furnace road. This line was soon broken by the vigorous onset of my skirmishers.

At this time, Lieutenant-Colonel [M. B.] Harris, commanding the Twelfth [Mississippi], was severely wounded while gallantly leading on his command, and was taken off the field. I continued my advance across the Furnace road, through a dense wood thickly set with undergrowth, driving back the enemy's skirmishers through the woods, until I reached a marsh and became much exposed to a rapid shelling from the enemy's artillery, when I halted my command, and remained here until about 11 p.m., when I received an order from the major-general commanding to advance as far as I could. I then pushed my skirmishers forward, and with much difficulty crossed the marsh in front, and advanced within a short distance of the enemy's lines of works, the enemy on my right being on my flank and somewhat in the rear of my right. I remained in this position until about 7 o'clock the next morning, when I was relieved by Brigadier-General Thomas, and then moved with my brigade to the field in rear of the Furnace road, where my command was allowed to rest for as short time.

Saturday, May 2, about 10 a.m, my command moved down the Furnace road, and formed a line of battle with three regiments (the Forty-eighth [Mississippi] being left behind as skirmishers, and were not relieved until late at night) on each side of the road, about 500 yards from the furnace. Here my skirmishers were hotly engaged with the enemy during the whole day and part of the night, the enemy being in heavy force in my front, and made frequent efforts to advance, without success. On every occasion my line of skirmishers drove them back in confusion.

On the morning of the 3rd, the enemy having disappeared from my front, I advanced my command by the furnace, capturing many prisoners and arms, until I reached a point in a field in rear of our batteries on the extreme right of the enemy's lines. Here I formed my command in column of regiments, and after a short time was ordered to advance by flank to the right and attack the enemy, who were in strong force on a hill in front. I deployed first the Nineteenth [Mississippi], then the Twelfth, Forty-eighth, and Sixteenth [Mississippi], directing the commanders to move by the left flank (which would bring them in line of battle fronting the enemy), as soon as they attained sufficient room in


Page 871 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
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