Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 06.djvu/184

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Southern Historical Society Papers.

teen pieces, in position on his left. McLaws then formed his division of four brigades in two lines of battle on Hood's left, and with sixteen pieces of artillery in position on McLaws' left.

This line was in the general direction of the Emmettsburg road and nearly parallel with it—the extreme right of Hood's line being directly opposite to the centre of the Round Top mountain. Law's brigade constituted the right of Hood's line, and was formed in single line as follows: my regiment, the Fifteenth Alabama, in the centre; the Forty-fourth and Forty-eighth Alabama regiments to my right, and the Forty-seventh and Fourth Alabama regiments to my left. Thus formed, between three and four o'clock P. M., both battalions of artillery opened fire; the Federals replied. Then our whole line advanced in quick time, under the fire of our guns, through the valley which lay spread out before us at the foot of the range of mountains or hills, with a small muddy, meandering stream running through it near midway. The reports of some of the Federal officers and newspaper correspondents claim that our advance was in two lines or a double line of battle. I presume this was true as to McLaws' division and a portion of Hood's; but there was no line in rear of Law's brigade. There were no reserves and no supports or reliefs in its rear; if there were any, I never saw them at any time, and I am confident there were none. When crossing the little run we received the first fire from the Federal infantry, posted behind a stone fence near the foot of Round Top mountain. Our line did not halt, but pressing forward drove our enemy from the fence and up the side of the mountain. Just at this point General Law marched the Forty-fourth and Forty-eighth regiments by the left flank across my rear to the support of Robertson's Texas brigade, which was said to have been hard pressed at that time and unable to advance further without reinforcements. This left my regiment on the extreme right flank of Lee's army, and as I advanced up the mountain side my right was soon exposed to a flank fire from Federal skirmishers, which I promptly met by deploying my right company at short distance. I continued to advance straight up the southern face of Round Top. My men had to climb up, catching to the bushes and crawling over the immense boulders, in the face of an incessant fire of their enemy, who kept falling back, taking shelter and firing down on us from behind the rocks and crags that covered the mountain side thicker than grave stones in a city cemetery. My men could not see their foe, and did not fire, except as one