Page:A memoir of the last year of the War of Independence, in the Confederate States of America.djvu/20

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BATTLES OF THE WILDERNESS.

OPERATIONS OF EARLY'S DIVISION.

On the morning of the 5th, Ewell's corps was put in motion, my division bringing up the rear. A short distance from the Old Wilderness Tavern, and just in advance of the place where a road diverges to the left from the old Stone Pike to the Germana Ford road, the enemy, in heavy force, was encountered, and Jones' brigade, of Johnson's division, and Battle's brigade, of Rodes' division, were driven back in some confusion. My division was ordered up, and formed across the pike; Gordon's brigade being on the right of the road. This brigade, as soon as it was brought into line, was ordered forward, and advanced, through a dense pine thicket, in gallant style. In conjunction with Daniels', Doles', and Ramseur's brigades, of Rodes' division, it drove the enemy back with heavy loss, capturing several hundred prisoners, and gaining a commanding position on the right. Johnson, at the same time, was heavily engaged in his front; his division being on the left of the pike, and extending across the road to the Germana Ford road, which has been mentioned. After the enemy had been repulsed, Hays' brigade was sent to Johnson's left, in order to participate in a forward movement; and it did move forward, some half-a-mile or so, encountering the enemy in force; but, from some mistake, not meeting with the expected co-operation, except from one regiment of Jones' brigade (the 25th. Va.), the most of which was captured, it was drawn back to Johnson's line, and took position on his left.

Pegram's brigade was subsequently sent to take position on Hays' left; and, just before night, a very heavy attack was made on its front, which was repulsed with severe loss to the enemy. In this affair, General Pegram received a