War of the Rebellion: Serial 039 Page 0859 Chapter XXXVII. THE CHANCELLORSVILLE CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

and in turn take their captors. The entire line of the enemy on the right of the road is repulsed, and our men follow in rapid pursuit. The regiment that had given way to the first onset of the enemy now returned to the attack and joined in the pursuit. The enemy did not assail with the same spirit on the left of the road, and were more easily repulsed, and now are followed on either side of the road, which is crowded with a confused mass of the dismofited enemy. With a good battery to play upon this retreating mass, the carnage would have been terrific. There was no rallying or reforming of this line. Another line came up the Plank road at a double-quick, and filing to the right and left, formed line in front of my brigade. This line was scarcely formed before they were broken by the fire of my men, and fled to the rear.

The pursuit continued as far as the toll-gate. Semmes' brigade and my own were the only troops that followed the retreating enemy. In rear of the gate were heavy reserves of the enemy. Our men were now halted and reformed it being quite dark, and retired, not pursued by the enemy, leaving pickets far to the front in the open field. The vigor of the enemy's attack at the church was doubtless due to the fact that they believed there was only one brigade to resist them, and that they anticipated an easy affair of it, while the number of dead and wounded left on the field attests the obstinacy of the resistance of our men-200 of the former and more than 150 of the latter, and largely over 200 prisoners not wounded and 1 Federal flag captured.

Thus ended this spirited conflict at Salem Church a bloody repulse to the enemy, rendering entirely useless to him his little success of the morning at Fredericksburg. The rear of our army at Chancellorsville was nows secure and free from danger, and the Sixth Army Corps of the enemy and a part of the Second were now content to remain on the defensive.

I beg to assure the major-general commanding that the conduct of both officers and men of the brigade was in the highest degree creditable. They were furiously attacked by superior forces, and not only stood their ground, but repusled the enemy with great loss, pursued him and, encountering a second line in their pursuit, they scattered and dispersed this body also. Night and want of ammunition prevented a farther pursuit.

This success, so brilliant for our men, was dearly earned by the sacrifice of the lives of 75 of the noble sons of Alabama, and the wounding of 372 and 48 missing an aggregate of 495. Of the missing, the most, wounded in the early part of the day near Stansbury's and afterward at the toll-gate, fell into the hands of the enemy. Six officers were killed and 23 wounded. The killed were Captain R. A. McCrary, Eighth Alabama a valuable officer, much lamented by his regiment; Captain W. C. Murphy Ninth Alabama, highly distinguished at the battle of Williamsburg, where he received two severe wounds. He fell at Salem Church in the thickest of the fight, and in advance of his men. Lieutenants [M. J. T.] Harper, Tenth Alabama; [O. L.] Strudwick, Eleventh Alabama [M. L.] Bankston and [H. M.] Cox, Fourteenth Alabama, all fell fighting with the heroism of veteran soldiers, against greatly superior forces of the enemy.

Among the severely wounded are Colonel [Y. L.] Royston, Eighth Alabama; Colonel [L.] Pinckard Fourteenth Alabama; Captain [E. M.] Cook, Tenth Alabama; Liuetenants Barksdale and Cobbs, Lewis' battery, all alike distinguished for their intelligence and valor.