Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 40.djvu/230
226 SOUTHERN HISTORICAL SOCIETY PAPERS.
an enfilade fire, and it was well handled. The artillery of our corps was handled Col. Stapleton Crutchfield.
With no tents and no cooking, we were up early on Satur- day morning, August 3Oth, and our brigade (Stonewall), Col. Baylor commanding, took position in the edge of the woods above the railroad cut, which was here some fifteen or twenty feet deep. The ground sloped in either direction, right and left ; and Col. Bradley T. Johnson, commanding the second brigade of Jackson's division, was on our right beyond the railroad cut, but was later transferrd to our left ; then came the third brigade, Col. Taliaferro's, and beyond him the fourth, the Louisiana bri- gade, Gen. Starke's, who now commanded our division. As we moved to our position we heard occasional firing on our left and front; thinking it from stragglers firing off their guns, as stragglers will do, Col. Baylor said to me: "Ride over there and stop that firing." I rode down the road leading to Sudley Mills, and when directly opposite the firing, I turned off to the right through the thick woods, rode towards the firing, when, all of a sudden, I was accosted : "Halt there ! halt !" I looked up, and to my surprise, along the old raili>ad cut in the woods, about twenty or thirty yards in front of me, was ranged a line of Yankee skirmishers, who had quietly stolen up and were popping at everything they could indistinctly see passing along the road, ambulances and such like. For a moment the thought passd through my mind, had I not better halt, but visions of a Yankee prison loomed up, and I prepared to trust to my horse'? heels, as I turned at once and as I did so, the branches of the trees knocked off my fine hat the only remains of the Ma- nassas plunder, and as there was no time to stop, that hat was irretrievably lost. Now came the forethought. When I get out on the road, I pulled out my old cap from the saddle-pockets, as I didn't like to report to Col. Baylor bareheaded, and I quickly rejoined the brigade. I reported to the Colonel that I couldn't stop that firing, and informed him from what it proceeded. A. P. Hill, on our left, .soon sent forward some men, and the