206 Southern Historical Society Papers.
had completed the coloring from the roots of the hair to the chin. Here was no place for rest, however, as the enemy's battery behind the creek on the opposite hills, having gotten the range, was pouring in a lively fire. Soon after passing the brow of the hill, darkness came on. Groups of men from the battalion halted on the roadside, near a framed building of some sort, and commenced shouting, " Fall in Howitzers ! ! " " This way Garber's men ! ! " " Fry's bat- tery ! ! " " Fall in ! ! " " Cutshaw's battalion fall in here ! ! " Thus of their own accord trying to recover the organization from its dis- order. Quite a number of the battalion got together, and in spite of hunger, thirst, defeat and dreadful weariness, pushed on to the High bridge. So anxious were the men to escape capture and the insinuation of desertion that when threatened with shooting by the rear guard, if they did not move on, they scarcely turned to see who spoke:' but the simple announcement "the Yankees are com- ing ! " gave them a little new strength, and again they struggled painfully along, dropping in the road sound asleep, however, at the slightest halt of the column.
At the bridge there was quite a halt, and in the darkness the men commenced calling to each other by name the rascally in- fantry around, still ready for fun answering for every name-. Brother called brother, comrade called comrade, friend called friend; and there were many happy reunions there that night. Some, alas ! of the best and bravest did not answer the cry of anxious friends.
Before the dawn of day the column was again in motion. What strange sensations the men had as they marched slowly across the High bridge. They knew its great height, but the night was so dark that they could not see the abyss on either side. Arrived on the other side, the wornout soldiers fell to the ground and slept,. more dead than alive. Some had slept as they marched across the bridge, and declared that they had no distinct recollection of when they left it, or how long they were upon it.
Early on the morning of the 7th, the march was resumed and continued through Farmville, across the bridge and to Cumberland heights, overlooking the town. Here, on the bare hillside, a line of battle was formed, for what purpose the men did not know the Howitzers occupying a central place in the line, and standing with their feet in the midst of a number of the graves of soldiers who had perished in the hospitals in the town.While standing thus in line a detail was sent into the town to.