192 Southern Historical Society Papers.
half a mile. But led, as they were, by the immortal Hood, they did it beautifully, grandly.
A SHOWER OF SHOT AND SHELL.
In the language of General Hood himself: "Onward we marched under a constantly increasing shower of shot and shell, whilst to our right could be seen some of our troops making their way to the rear, and others laying down beneath a galling fire. Our ranks were thinned at almost every step forward, and proportionately to the growing fury of the storm of projectiles. Soon we attained the crest of the bald ridge, within about 150 yards of the breastworks. Here was concentrated upon us from batteries in front and flank a fire of shell and canister, which ploughed through our ranks with deadly effect. Already the gallant Colonel Marshall, together with many other brave men, had fallen victims in this bloody onset. At a quickened pace we continued to advance without firing a shot, down the slope over a body of our soldiers lying on the ground, and across Pow- hite Creek, when amid the fearful roar of musketry and artillery, I gave the order to fix bayonets and charge. With a ringing shout we dashed up the steep hill, through the abattis and over the breastworks upon the very heads of the enemy. The Fed- erals, panic-stricken, rushed precipitately to the rear upon the infantry in support of the artillery. Suddenly the whole joined in flight toward the valley beyond."
While the 4th was making this glorious charge, equal to any in the annals of war, the 1st and 5th, with the i8th Georgia and Hampton's Legion, were nobly fighting and charging in their front, and simultaneously with the breach made by the 4th, they swept the Federals from their front, and the enemy's centre once pierced, they soon gave way all along their line, and as our vic- torious forces emerged upon the high plateau lately held by the enemy, as the shades of evening were gathering fast, we beheld the Federal Army, broken in every part, in full retreat towards its bridges on the Chickahominy. The coming night alone saved that wing of McClellan's Army from utter ruin. As it was, our victory was complete, and although our own losses were heavy, they were not heavier than the enemy's.