Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 04.djvu/122
114 Southern Historical Society Papers.
were placed on picket one and a quarter iniles below or south of the Chambersburg pike, at a mill on Marsh creek, reaching this point before sundown. Johnson's division, of Swell's corps, came up a little before dark ; McLaws' and Hood's, of Longstreet's corps, after dark, and bivouacked east of Marsh creek. These four divis- ions had not been engaged. All of General Lee's infantry was now at hand, except Pickett's division, of three brigades. One corps of the Union army arrived at 7 A. M. on the 2d and another late in the afternoon, at the end or near the close of the battle of the next day. Our troops, from their success, were in fine spirits. The re- verse of this, it was reasonable to suppose, was the condition of the enemy.
It was the natural order of things that the attack should be re- newed the next morning, and the earlier the better. There can be but little doubt, if the first collision had been made with a full or a more perfect knowledge of the enemy, the victory would have been more complete, and it is probable there would not have been a second collision, certainly not at the same place.
It has been asserted that General Longstreet was ordered to at- tack at daylight or early the next morning. Of this I have no knowledge personally, but am inclined to believe that he was so ordered. The attack could have been made easily by 9 or 10 A. M., as will appear. Wilcox's brigade was recalled from picket duty, leaving its post after sunrise, moved back t} the Chambersburg pike, then on it towards Gettysburg for about a mile, bore off then to the right, passed through troops whose arms were stacked, was informed they were McLaws' and Hood's divisions; continuing the march over undulating fields and wooded crests nearly in a straight line, till at length, from an elevated point, its commander was or- dered to let its right rest against a piece of woods three-fourths of a mile in front and to the right, the left connecting with other bri- gades of the division. In this wood were two Union regiments on picket. A regiment sent to explore the woods came upon them suddenly, and it was a sharp fight to drive them out. This was about 9 A. M., and at 4 P. M., McLaws formed in these same woods, and moved forward to the attack about 6 P. M.
General Longstreet in his report refers to his orders on this occa- sion, but is not definite as to time.