Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 29.djvu/188
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a space, every available foot of space was crowded with wounded and bleeding soldiers. The floor, the benches, even the chancel and pulpit were all packed almost to suffocation with them.
The amputated limbs were piled up in every corner almost as high as a man could reach; blood flowed in streams along the aisles and out at the doors; screams and groans were heard on all sides, while the surgeons, with their assistants, worked with knives, saws, sutures, and bandages to relieve or save all they could from bleeding to death. These heart-rending horrors are now, after nearly forty years has elapsed, as vivid in the memory of the writer, and probably in the memories of many others who witnessed them, as though they had occurred but on yesterday.
This venerable old edifice was badly wrecked during the battle, but in consideration of the fact that the wounded Federals received just as tender and careful treatment at the hands of our surgeons and their assistants as the Confederates did, caused some generous citizens of the North soon after the war closed, to show their appre- ciation of the kindness shown their suffering soldiers, had the house rebuilt in a very handsome manner. So old Salem Church stands to-day one of the most beautiful houses of worship in all that part of the country, and a noted landmark of one of the bloodiest battles of the late civil war.
In conclusion, I will state that seldom so overwhelming a victory was ever gained over such fearful odds as General Lee's over Gen- eral Hooker at Chancellorsville. By it, Richmond was saved and the Federal army, one of the largest and best appointed that had ever been encountered by our troops up to that time, was thoroughly beaten and forced to save itself from almost utter extermination by ignominious retreat. According to statistics taken from Hooker's and Lee's reports, now on record at Washington, and recently published, is taken the following figures: Hooker had in the action 113,838 troops, 404 pieces of artillery, besides small arms, and lost 17,287 men, while Lee had only 59,681 troops, 160 cannon, besides small arms, and lost 12,000 men. These figures clearly show the military genius, skill, and ability of General Lee and his subordinate officers as well as the pure metal of which the Confederate soldier, from the highest officer to the humblest man in the ranks, was com- posed.
Colonel C. C. SANDERS,
Twenty-fourth Georgia Regiment.