36 Southern Historical Society Papers.
eat, of which the men stood much in need, for they had had nothing to eat since we left Harper's Ferry, two days before. I remember distinctly that we retired to a farmhouse in the rear, where some salt bacon was issued to us. In default of cooking utensils we cooked it before the fire on forked sticks, and I never knew bacon to taste sweeter in my life; " hunger is the best condiment," says the prov- erb.
After resting and collecting our men, we returned to the field and were posted in support of the Rockbridge Artillery old friends, as it was attached to the " Stonewall Brigade," and the present writer had formerly been a member of it. This battery was stationed on top of the hill from which we had advanced to the last attack, and just above the farmhouse (Mauser's), in front of which we had lain.
We remained here during the afternoon, when we were moved to a piece of woods a short distance to our left and front, where we re- mained all the next day (i8th). We were expecting another attack all that morning until truces were made for the burial of the dead, whether officially or informally I do not know, but the burial of the dead by both sides went on in our front all that day. That night General Lee withdrew his whole army quietly without loss, and even without attack, to the south side of the Potomac, which was reached soon after sunrise the next morning
NUMBERS OF MEN ENGAGED.
For ah account of the battle on other parts of the field the reader is referred to Colonel Allan's The Army of Northern Virginia in 1862, and to General Palfrey's The Antietam and Fredericksburg y the best accounts that this writer has ever read. The defect of Gen- eral Palfrey's otherwise fair book is that it seems impossible for him, as for other Federal writers, to realize the small number of troops, compared to the number of General McClellan's army, with which General Lee fought this battle. Colonel Allan says (page 380): " Lee's entire infantry force was under 30,000, to which should be added his cavalry and artillery, commonly estimated at 8,000. The battle was thus fought by the Confederates ' with less than 40,000 men,' " quoting from General Lee's report. Even this allowance is an overestimate. The present writer investigated this subject a few years ago in a controversy with a reviewer in The Nation (Nos. 1538 and 1543), and came to the conclusion that the Confederate force in the battle of Sharpsburg numbered 35,000 or 36,000. The Nation