Page:A Memoir of the Last Year of the War for Independence in the Confederate States of America.djvu/27

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23
BATTLES OF SPOTSYLVANIA C. H.

General Lee, through Hampton, to move on the Shady Grove road towards Spotsylvania Court House, which I did, crossing a small river called the Po, twice. After reaching the rear of the position occupied by the other two corps, I was ordered to Spotsylvania Court House, to take position on the right, and cover the road from that place to Fredericksburg. No enemy appeared in my front on this day, except at a distance on the Fredericksburg Road.

Early on the morning of the 10th, I was ordered to move one of my divisions back, to cover the crossing of the Po on the Shady Grove road; and to move with another division, to the rear and left, by the way of Spotsylvania Old Court House, and drive back a column of the enemy which had crossed the Po and taken possession of the Shady Grove road, thus threatening our rear and endangering our trains, which were on the road leading by the Old Court House to Louisa Court House.

Our line was then north of the Po, with its left, Field's division of Longstreet's corps, resting on that stream, just above the crossing of the Shady Grove road. The whole of the enemy's force was also north of the Po, prior to this movement of his. Mahone's division was sent to occupy the banks of the Po on Field's left, while, with Heth's division and a battalion of artillery, I moved to the rear, crossing the Po on the Louisa Court House Road, and then following that road until we reached one coming in from Waite's Shop on the Shady Grove Road. After moving about a mile on this road, we met Hampton gradually falling back before the enemy, who had pushed out a column of infantry considerably to the rear of our line. This column, was, in turn, forced back to the position on the Shady Grove Road, which was occupied by what was reported to be Hancock's corps. Following up and crossing a small stream just below a mill pond, we succeeded in reaching Waite's Shop, from whence an attack was made on the enemy, and the entire force which had crossed the Po was driven back with a loss of one piece of artillery, which fell into our hands, and a considerable number in killed and wounded. This relieved us from a very threatening danger, as the position the enemy had attained would have enabled