Page:Notes of the Mexican war 1846-47-48.djvu/130

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Never shall I forget the looks of these gallant men. Some had their arms shot off, others shattered by shot and bullets, hung powerless, while a stream of their precious blood poured from their severed arteries, flooding their sides. Never, never, shall I forget this horrid sight, and I assure you it was not very encouraging to those soldiers who were just going into the field of battle; but such is war.

I understand these soldiers were wounded early last evening in storming a hill opposite Cerro Gordo.

Orders now came from Gen. Winfield Scott that the heights of Cerro Gordo must be stormed all at once and taken without further delay.

We moved and passed through the chaparral, moving with the left division in front. The First Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, Col. Wynkoop commanding, in front, supported by the First Tennessee Volunteers, Col. W. B. Campbell commanding; the Second Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers, Lieut.-Col. John W. Geary commanding; supported by the Second Regiment Tennessee Volunteers, commanded by Col. W. T. Haskell. In this way we moved on with the utmost caution, climbing up the hill which is both steep and rough and rocky, covered in some places with miles of trees, shrub and chaparral, which bears clusters of thorns sharp as a needle.

As already stated, we filed to the left, to assault the enemy's line of batteries and entrenchment to the right, in the rear of the National Road, with nothing to protect our men except the steepness of the hill and trees.

After we had reached the position assigned to us, Gen. Pillow ordered our division to halt, with positive orders not to move or fire until further orders were given from either him or Gen. Patterson.

From here is a fine view of the valley below, which was literally covered with wild flowers, and in some places, lilies were forcing their way up between rocks where one would think nothing could grow.