Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 24.djvu/23

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University of North Carolina in the Civil War.

faculty, the resident students and tin- villagers, also charat teii/.ed to the hi^hot decree the conduct of the alumni. The first deaths were not in buttle, but from disease rontrueted in the service. The first victim of disease was probubly John H. Fitts, of Warrenton, who died in June, iS6i. Hut with tin- first great battle of the war, the Univer- sity received her baptism of blood. At First Manassas she lost at least four of her alumni And the first student of this I'niversity who had attained the rank of a commissioned officer in the Con- federate army, and possibly the first of all, officer or private, to fall in battle was, William Preston Mangum. His father, the Hon. Willie P. Mangum, had clung to the Union which he had served so long and so well while there was hope, but when hope failed, he gladly -ave the hope of his house to the Confederacy. The son enlisted in the Flat River Guards, afterwards company B, 6th North Carolina, and was made second lieutenant. A few days before the battle of First Manassas, the 6th was ordered to Winchester and from there was rushed forward to reinforce Beauregard at Manassas. They arrived on the field at the crisis of the conflict on the 2ist. Col. Fisher, from want of experience, had failed to throw out skirmishers or to form a line of battle, and when the regiment emerged, moving in column from a low scattered wood, Rickett's section of the Sher- man battery was seen directly in its front and within seventy-five yards of the head of the column. These guns were then firing on other troops and could not be turned immediately on the 6th. Two or three companies formed into line and delivered a volley which disabled the battery. The companies charged, and the guns were captured. Lieutenant Mangum was seen standing by one of the captured cannon, and while the firing was still fierce, was mortally wounded within an hour of the time he was first under fire. Three others of the students, Adolph Lastrapes and Mitchell S. Prud- homme, of Louisiana, and John H. Stone of Alabama, stand with Lieutenant Mangum at the head of that long list of alumni of this Institution who poured out their blood on the battle-fields from First Manassas to Appomattox.

I shall now give a few statistics of the alumni. Were our Univer- sity records more complete, we should no doubt find that in some instances the figures which I shall give, would be raised much higher. The record of the 4th North Carolina was very brilliant at Fair Oaks or Seven Pines. It carried 678 men into action, and lost 77 killed and 286 wounded, with six missing, or 54 per cent of the total number