War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0983 BATTLE OF FAIR OAKS, OR SEVEN PINES. Chapter XXIII.

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with a regimental color and some 30 persons, mostly officers, with him. I saw our danger at once and dispatched a courier to General Hill, asking for more troops to cover the vacuum. Receiving no reply, and the enemy pressing forward in force, brigade after brigade, and threaten- ing my left flank, I threw back the left wing of the Nineteenth Virginia, the left regiment, so as to oppose a front to them, dispatched a staff officer to General Hill with [a] request for troops; and after a while sent a second dispatch, similarly worded. As a matter of course, from having been the attacking party, I now had to act on the defensive. Fortunately the enemy seemed deter- mined on attacking and carrying my front and driving me out of the abatis, which our men succeeded in preventing, though with consider- able loss. About this fime I learned [that] Pryors brigade was being with- drawn from my right. I had in the mean time sent all my staff and couriers back to General Hill, the last message being that if he would send more troops and some ammunition to me we would drive th~ enemy across the Chickahominy; and I have always believed this would have been done but for the misfortune which happened to our general on the previons evening. Had he not been wounded, and been on the field with us, the result would have been entirely different. I do not mean to cast any blame on the brave and heroic Hill, for after the fall of the master spirit there seemed to be no head, aiid Hill, I know, was bothered and amazed with countermanding orders. No assistance, no demonstration was given or made from the other side of the railroad. A most perfect apathy seemed to prevail; not a gun was fired, and I subsequently learned from Brigadier-General Hood that be saw the enemy pouring his forces across the railroad not more than 600 or 800 yards in his front and concentrating their attack on me; that one piece of artillery placed in the railroad cut would have stopped this and drawn their attention to his front, but he said he had orders to make no movement, but to wait for orders. A forward movement then by the left wing of our army would have struck the enem in flank at any rate, have stopped their concentration. y At this perilous juncture, hearing nothing from General Hill, I rode as rapidly as possible to him, and explained as laconically [as I could] the position of affiuirs. He asked me if I could not withdraw my bri- gade. I said yes, but did not wish to do so; that I would leave all my wounded, lose many more men, and that the enemy would pour down on the disorganized mass, as he himself termed the troops about hIm. Be then sent two regiments of Colstons brigade, which my assistant adjutant-general, Captain Pickett, put in position on my left, and asked me to take Mahones brigade and put it on my right, which was done; Mahone becoming hotly engaged in a few minutes after getting in posi- tion. I had [issued] an order to my men, as far as possible, to reserve their fire. From that circumstance, I suppose, and from the fact that the enemy had become aware of the small force actually opposed to them, a brigade debouched from the piece of woods in my front and moved steadily toward my left flank. They came up to within about range, when their commander, seeing his men about to commence firing, stopped them [and] called out, What troops are these? Some of our men shouted, Virginians. He then cried out, Dont fire, theyll sur-- render; well capture all these d.--d Virginians. Scarcely were the words uttered when the Nineteenth and left of the Eighteenth rose up) in the abatis and fired a withering volley into them, killing their corn- manding officer and literally mowing down their ranks. Just then