Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 08.djvu/212

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.
200
Southern Historical Society Papers.

tenant-Colonel Walker was directed to bring up his guns, and establish them in the position thus gained. This was done during the night by the indomitable resolution and energy of Colonel Walker and his adjutant, Lieutenant Chamberlayne, ably seconded by captains of batteries. Generals Branch and Gregg had also gained the position desired, and daybreak found them in rear of the enemy's line of defence. General Pender, with Thomas in support, moved his brigades to within one hundred and fifty yards of the works, and were sheltered as much as possible from the fire of the enemy. At dawn, Lieutenant-Colonel Walker opened a rapid enfilade fire from all his batteries, at about one thousand yards' range. The enemy replied vigorously. In an hour, the enemy's fire seeming to be pretty well silenced, the batteries were ordered to cease, and this was the signal for storming the works. General Pender had commenced his advance, when the enemy again opening, Pegram and Crenshaw were run forward to within four hundred yards, and quickly coming into battery, poured in a damaging fire. The enemy now displayed a white flag, and Lieutenant Chamberlayne was sent in to know if they had surrendered.

Sharpsburg—By direction of General Jackson, I remained at Harper's Ferry until the morning of the 17th, when, at half-past six A. M., I received an order from General Lee to move to Sharpsburg. Leaving Thomas with his brigade to complete the removal of the captured property, my division was put in motion at half-past seven A. M. The head of my column arrived upon the battlefield of Sharpsburg, a distance of seventeen miles, at half-past two, and, reporting in person to General Lee, he directed me to take position on our right. Brigadier-General D. R. Jones, commanding on the right, gave me such information as my ignorance of the ground made necessary. My troops were rapidly thrown into position—Pender and Brockenbrough on the extreme right, looking to a road which crossed the Anteitam near it mouth, and Branch, Gregg and Archer extending to the left and connecting with D. R. Jones' division.  *   *   *   *  My troops were not in a moment too soon. The enemy had already advanced in three lines, had broken through Jones' division, captured McIntosh's battery, and were in the full tide of success. With a yell of defiance, Archer charged them, retook McIntosh's guns, and drove them back pell-mell. Branch and Gregg, with their old veterans, sternly held their ground, and pouring in destructive volleys, the