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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)

soon as the attack should be made, to send forward two Napoleons, which would keep slightly behind the advance line of infantry until open ground beyond the body, of woods should be reached. Colonel [S.] Crutchfield went forward with his section, at the same time ordering me to bring on the remainder of my basion at a distance of half a mile.

The infantry attacked, about 5.30 p. m. and, after a sharp engagement with the enemy's skirmishers, drove their lines back over the open ground around Wilderness Church and Melzi Chancellors's house. My artillery followed rapidly down the turnpike, having no occasion to take position. After reaching Melzi Chancellors' several pieces were put in position on both sides of the road, in the entrenchments there found, to repel and attack of the enemy should our lines be driven back at the woods just ahead. About this time I received an order from Colonel Crutchfield to close up on the leading section. This section was now unlimbered, and fired on the enemy's lines retreating through the woods. The artillery was advanced a half mile farther, and again two Napoleons unlimbered with the addition of a Parrott of [Captain William P.] Carter's battery.

We were now within 1,000 yards of the Chancellorsville field, where the enemy, had massed on open ground some twenty or more guns. On our side it was impossible to being more guns to bear, on account of the heavy forest on both sides of the turnpike. The fire from our three guns was promptly responded to from the enemy's whole line. At line this juncture, General Hill ordered the firing to cease. We remained in this position until the front line (Rodes' division) was relieved by Hills division which it was understood wounded resume the attack.

Between 8 and 9 p. m. General Jackson passe along the turnpike to the front, with a large attendance of horsemen, and, as he returned in a trot, the infantry probably mistaking the party for the enemy's cavalry, fired upon it. the whole line of infantry took up the fire, and this drew on us again a heavy fire of artillery, in which Colonel Crutchfield was of pieces on the turnpike, behind (with exception of the three pieces in position).

After General Jackson was wounded, it was determined to make no further movement that night. I then withdrew my battalion to their entrenchments, near M. Chancellor's house, where the guns were placed in position and broken poles replaced and preparation made for the battle of next day. During the night, A. P. Hill's and Longstreet's artillery arrived. Next morning early the fresh artillery was pushed forward. In a short time I received orders to send my Napoleon battery to the field on the right, to report to Major [W. J.] Pegram. Shortly after, I moved forward to the frame house in the woods and on the right of the turnpike. At this point I sent the smooth-bores to Major Pegram and opened fire with ten rifled pieces-some from my own battalion and some from others-on the enemy's works upon which Pegram was firing. The enemy's guns were in this manner laced under a heavy cross-fire, and in a short time they retired.

With the approval of General lee, I collected such guns as could be at hand, and moved forward to the crest of the hill on which the enemy's works were located and which they had just abandoned. The guns were from [Colonel E. P.] Alexander's, Lieutenant-Colonel [William T.] Poague's, and my own battalion. I sent an order to Major [Carter M.] Braxton to move down the turnpike as soon as I opened from the hill, and to take position on the left, at the works. He, with Colonel [H. P.] Jones, had been engaged with the enemy near the turnpike.

OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 25, Part 1 (Chancellorsville)
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