Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 06.djvu/280

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Southern Historical Society Papers.


a hundred and fifty yards distant and might advance at any moment; and all at once a proof was given of the dangerous position which he occupied. Captain Adams, of General Hill's staff, had ridden ten or fifteen yards ahead of the group, and was now heard calling out, "Halt! surrender! Fire on them if they don't surrender!" At the next moment he came up with two Federal skirmishers who had at once surrendered, with an air of astonishment, declaring that they were not aware they were in the Confederate lines. General Hill had drawn his pistol and mounted his horse, and he now returned to take command of his line and advance, promising Jackson to keep his accident from the knowledge of the troops, for which the General thanked him. He had scarcely gone when Lieutenant Morrison, who had come up, reported the Federal line advancing rapidly and then within about a hundred yards of the spot. He exclaimed, "Let us take the General up in our arms and carry him off!" but Jackson said faintly, "No; if you can help me up I can walk." He was accordingly lifted up and placed upon his feet, when the Federal batteries in front opened with great violence, and Captain Leigh, who had just arrived with a litter, had his horse killed under him by a shell. He leaped to the ground near Jackson, and the latter, leaning his right arm on Captain Leigh's shoulder, slowly dragged himself along towards the Confederate lines, the blood from his wounded arm flowing profusely over Captain Leigh's uniform.

Hill's lines were now in motion to meet the coming attack, and as the men passed Jackson, they saw from the number and rank of his escort that he must be a superior officer. "Who is that—who have you there?" was called; to which the reply was, "Oh, it's only a friend of ours who is wounded." These inquiries became at last so frequent that Jackson said to his escort: "When asked, just say it is a Confederate officer." It was with the utmost difficulty that the curiosity of the troops was evaded. They seemed to suspect something, and would go around the horses which were led along on each side of the General to conceal him, to see if they could discover who it was. At last one of them caught a glimpse of a man who had lost his cap, as we have seen in the woods, and was walking bareheaded in the moonlight, and suddenly the man exclaimed, "in a most pitiful tone," says an eye-witness: "Great God, that is General Jackson!" An evasive reply was made, implying that this was a mistake, and the man looked from the speaker to Jackson with a bewildered air; but passed on without further comment. All this occurred before Jackson had been able to drag himself more than twenty steps; but Captain Lee had the litter at hand, and his strength being completely exhausted, the General was placed upon it, and borne toward the rear.

The litter was carried by two officers and two men, the rest of the escort walking beside it and leading the horses. They had scarcely began to move, however, when the Federal artillery opened a furious fire upon the turnpike from the works in front of Chancellorsville, and a hurricane of shell and canister swept down the