having discovered a body of the enemy's troops making their way gradually between us and the left of our main line, determined to shift his position to an eminence nearer our line and little to the rear. He gave the instructions accordingly, and I moved back, taking a route in rear of the one by which I had moved out, and, by General Stuart's direction, my brigade was moved into the skirt of woods through which I had marched in going out. Just as I was getting into line, General Stuart informed me that General Lawton had been wounded, and that General Jackson had sent for me to carry my brigade back and take command of the division. Leaving the Thirteenth Virginia Regiment, numbering less than 100 men, with General Stuart, at his request, I then moved to the rear of this woods around a corn-field, as the enemy had gotten into the woods to my right, and as I came near the position at which my brigade had been posted the night before, I found Colonels Grigsby and Stafford, of Jackson's division, rallying some 200 or 300 men of that division at the point at which Starke's brigade had been in position the night before. A body of the enemy, perhaps only skirmishers, had gotten into the woods to the left and was firing upon our men, being held in check by a scattering fire. This was the same body of woods at which the Dunkard church, before mentioned, is located. This woods runs along the Hagerstown road for several hundred yards, entirely on the left hand side as you proceed from Sharpsburg. Then there is a field, the edge of which runs at right angles to the road for about 200 yards, making thus an elbow in the woods, and then turns to the right and runs along the woods parallel to the Hagerstown road for a quarter of a mile, and the woods again turn square to the left and extends back about half a mile, making at this point again an elbow with the strip of woods running along the road from the church. The church itself is at the end next to Sharpsburg and near the road. The woods is about 400 yards through, where it runs along the road, and back of it is a plantation road, running by a house and a barn and through the long elbow in the woods on the left. The field between the woods and the Hagerstown road forms a plateau, nearly level and on higher ground than the woods, which slopes down abruptly from the edge of plateau. This woods is full of ledges of limestone and small ridges, affording excellent cover for troops.
A portion of the enemy, as before stated, had gotten into the farther end of this woods, where the field is between it and the road, and, as I came up, Colonels Grigsby and Stafford commenced to advance upon this body, and I immediately formed my brigade in line and advanced along in their rear, the enemy giving way as the advance was made. I halted my brigade on a ridge in this woods, and Colonels Grigsby and Stafford, at my suggestion, formed their men on my left. My line when thus formed was perpendicular to the Hagerstown road, and the right rested near the edge of the plateau above mentioned, but was concealed and protected by the rise in the ground. A considerable body of the enemy's troops was seen in the field in my front, as thus presented, which was evidently endeavoring to make a movement on our flank and rear. I directed Colonel Smith, of the Forty-ninth Virginia Regiment, to take command of the brigade and to resist the enemy at all hazards, and then rode in the direction of the position at which the rest of the brigades had been engaged, for the purpose of taking command of them and ascertaining their condition. I ascertained that these brigades had fallen back some distance to the rear for the purpose of reorganizing, and that they were probably not in a condition to go into the fight again. I dispatched Major J. P. Wilson, a volunteer aide, who had been with