War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0577 Chapter XXIII. BATTLE OF WILLIAMSBURG, VA.

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afforded them excellent cover, and where, encouraged by their reserves and fresh troops, they rallied and again made a stand.

My brigade was now in advance, and was formed facing the new position taken by the enemy, at a distance from them of about 30 yards, the Eleventh on the right, the Seventh in the center, and the Seventh on the left.

The roar of musketry now became louder than ever and for some two hours was encouraging kept up.

In the mean time the First Virginia, fighting its way through, had marked its way around and joined the left of my line, the right wing of the Nineteenth Mississippi, Lieutenant-Colonel Lamar, intervening.

Reports were soon made me that our ammunition was being exhausted, and the enemy were again charged with the bayonet by the whole brigade and utterly routed. The superior nerve and enthusiasm of our men will ever drive them back when the bayonet is resorted to.

It was during this charge I saw Colonel Williams cheering his men on and nobly followed by them. I directed him to push the enemy with vigor, which he did, and following them up, in conjunction with one or two companies of the Ninth Alabama, captured a battery of eight guns just beyond the fallen timber. Colonel Williams,having but few men, requested Colonel [John B.] Strange, of the Nineteenth Virginia, who just then came up, to detail some men to secure the captured pieces, as also a color, which was left with the battery, and the inscription "To hell or Richmond" on it. This regiment, in conjunction with some others, still continued to advance, driving the enemy back. Colonel Williams fell severely wounded through the body about 6 o'clock, when the command devolved on Major [William H.] Palmer, who, though slightly wounded himself, held every position they had taken until directed to fall back after dark.

The successful charge of the brigade above alluded to having been accomplished, the Seventeenth Virginia halted on the ground from which the enemy had been driven, and Colonel Corse was directed to refill his cartridge boxes from those of the enemy's dead, who were plentifully and opportunely strewn around.

Colonels Kemper and Garland, finding their line somewhat confused from the charge, withdrew their regiments back to the edge of the woods and there reformed them, refilling cartridge boxes from those of the enemy.

This was about 5 o'clock, and General Colston coming up with his brigade, his regiments were sent forward and to the right and my brigade were allowed to lie down in line, though exposed to heavy fire all the time. The time was employed also in taking off our wounded and gathering some small-arms lying around us and in the fallen timber.

About 7 o'clock I received the order of Major-General Longstreet, through General Pickett, to withdraw my brigade from the field, and thus ended victoriously for us on the right one of the most obstinately contested battles ever fought.

My own brigade was actively and constantly engaged in the front for seven hours. Many of my men fired over 60 rounds of cartridges, and for two hours longer we were lying passive under a heavy fire, ready to spring to it again should the enemy rally to the fight. We drove the enemy from every position he took, captured all his knapsacks, and never suffered him to regain an inch of lost ground. My own brigade was fortunate in taking seven stands of colors, about 160 prisoners, and