Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/314
306 Southern Historical Society Papers.
plans, determined to stimulate the charge by his personal presence where the battle was raging fiercest. He led two brigades which had faltered and wrested the position fought for.
It has been said that General Grant did not reach the field until after midday. He had gone to Savannah Saturday, where he slept that night, but the sound of the guns told him of the battle, and when he reached Pittsburg Landing he found the river bank alive with his men, fleeing from the danger which had swept them from their beds in the early morning.
His forces' were routed and thousands of fugitives were crouching under the banks and in the ravines. They could not be rallied or incited to return to their commands. When he arrived, however, there were at least 60,000 muskets in the dreadful work. The continuous roll and roar and blaze of small arms, the shriek and crash of rifle shells through the trees, the explosion of shells and the reverberating of more than a hundred cannon, besides the yells of the Confederates, formed one of the bloodiest scenes of modern times.
Early in the morning General Gladden fell, mortally wounded. He was leading his brigade with great enthusiasm. General Glad- den was a citizen of New Orleans, full of the instincts which have won renown for Southern soldiers, and was among the first to take up arms. His death was a great loss and a great misfortune. He had already distinguished himself, but had he lived no one can say to what eminence he would have risen. It has been said that when Gladden fell, half of his men ran toward him, and finally, under a desolating fire, began to falter.
Then Colonel Daniel W. Adams assumed command, and seizing a flag, dashed forward upon the Yankee lines. The men, animated by his gallant act, rushed to his standard, and drove the enemy pell mell and captured seven stand of colors from Prentiss' Division.
On another part of the field Brigadier-General Thomas Hindman, while pressing his brigade forward with undaunted nerve, constantly in front, drew down on him a concentrated fire of the enemy, under which he was severely wounded.
After noon the men were worn out, and notwithstanding the en- emy was crowded back to the river, that is to say, scarcely a mile distant, there was no concentration which could give an effective last blow. As a consequence the enemy was strengthening its lines.
General Johnston, meanwhile, threw himself in the charge of a brigade and received a wound in the leg. A mortal wound it proved.