Division, Regulars, Federal Army. Being in advance of the corps, I continued to move forward for about half a mile, keeping out skirmishers toward the enemy to prevent annoyance. The firing becoming very heavy and close, the column was halted by General Jackson, and General Ramseur's brigade detached, by his order, to support that portion of Anderson's division which was in front of my division. This brigade became sharply engaged under Anderson, behaving with great coolness and gallantry, as I have been informed by Generals Hill and Anderson. Brigadier-General Ramseur handled his own skirmishers, and with great skill and gallantry. The rest of the division was moved by the right flank to the top of the ridge near the road, and, after being established in line of battle, was directed by Lieutenant-General Jackson to shelter itself and await orders. Subsequently it was moved forward into the woods, but though the skirmishers became engaged - capturing several prisoners - the main body of the enemy had retired before I was permitted to advance. Remaining in line of battle until about sunset, the division then resumed its march up the Plank road, and bivouacked that night near Aldrich's Tavern, about 1 1/4 miles from Chancellorsville.
At an early hour on the morning of the 2nd, Iverson's brigade was ordered to relieve Ramseur's, still on duty with Anderson in front. Iverson subsequently overtook the division on the march. About 8 o'clock, the route was resumed, this division still in advance. Turning short to the left, about one-half mile beyond Aldrich's, we followed the Mine road for the purpose of getting on the right and in rear of Hooker's army. On arriving at the old furnace, on this road, the Twenty-third Georgia Regiment (Colonel [Emory F.] Best) was detached by General Jackson's order to guard a road from the direction of Chancellorsville, by which the enemy might threaten the moving column. This regiment, with the exception of the colonel and a few men, was subsequently captured by the enemy, who made a vigorous assault upon the ordnance train and artillery then passing, but were gallantly repulsed by Colonel J. Thompson Brown, commanding battalion artillery. Colonel Best's report of the manner in which his regiment discharged its important duty, and of its fate, is inclosed. A court of inquiry on the subject was prevented by the removal of Colquitt's brigade, to which it was attached, from this department to that of North Carolina.
On reaching the Plank road again, about 2 miles northwest of Chancellorsville, our cavalry was found skirmishing with that of the enemy, and a delay was caused by an endeavor on our part to entrap them.
At this point, it having been determined to make a still farther detour toward the enemy's rear, the column was moved across to the old Turnpike road, and was formed in line of battle about 4 p. m., 2 1/2 miles from Chancellorsville. The line was formed perpendicular to the road, by which it was equally divided - Iverson's brigade on the left, Colquitt's on the right, Rodes' on the left center, Doles' on right center, the right of Rodes' and left of Doles' resting on the road. Ramseur's brigade was placed in the rear of Colquitt as a support and to guard the flank.
By 5 o'clock, Trimble's division, under command of Brigadier-General Colston, had formed about 100 yards in rear of my command, and in continuation of Ramseur's line. A. P. Hill's division formed the third line in rear of Colston. Each brigade commander received positive instructions, which were well understood. The whole line was to push ahead from the beginning, keeping the road for its guide. The position at Talley's house was to be carried at all hazards, as, from the