Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 04.djvu/17

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9
Battle of Chancellorsville.

Battle of Chancellorsville—Report of Major-General Stuart.


HEADQUARTERS SECOND, CORPS,   
ARMY OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA, 
May 6th, 1863.

Brig.-Gen. R. H. Chilton, A. A. & I. G.,

Hd. Qrs. A. N. V.:

General: I have the honor to submit, in advance of a detailed report, the following narrative of events connected with the battle of the Wilderness, May second, and of Chancellorsville, May third, and events following:

This corps, under its immortal leader, Lieut.-Gen. Jackson, attacked the enemy on his right, turning his right flank by the turnpike road, at Melzie Chancellor's, two miles above Chancellorsville, making the attack late in the evening, after an arduous and necessarily circuitous march from the plank road, two miles below Chancellorsville. The enemy had a fine position, and if time had been given him to recover from his first surprise and mass troops on that front, it would have been a difficult task to dislodge them; but Jackson's entire corps, both when marching and when in position, had been purposely screened from view by the cavalry of Fitz. Lee's brigade—an important duty, which he performed with great skill and address. The attack was thus, in a measure, a surprise. The enemy's line of entrenchments was carried, and his legions driven in confusion from the field. It was already dark when I sought Gen. Jackson, and proposed, as there appeared nothing else for me to do, to take some cavalry and infantry over and hold the Ely's ford. He approved the proposition, and I had already gained the heights overlooking the ford, where was a large number of camp fires, when Capt, Adams, of Gen. A. P. Hill's staff, reached me post haste, and informed me of the sad calamities which for the time deprived the troops of the leadership of both Jackson and Hill, and the urgent demand for me to come and take command as quickly