Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 27.djvu/209

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Florida Bri<j<i<li at (,'<-((i/*l>nri/. 201

assumed command, Lieutenant Todd being second in rank. The Fifth Florida was commanded by Captain Gardner, who lost an arm on the second day, when the command devolved on Captain Bryan, and next upon Captain Hollyman. The Eighth was commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Baya. These three regiments made up the brigade which was under Colonel Lang, of the Eighth, who handled it skil- fully and bravely, in the absence of General Perry, who is detained from duty by severe illness. ' '

To the foregoing testimonials of the valor of Perry's brigade at Gettysburg should be added the following tribute from their gallant division commander. Emanating from the high source that it does, it should be preserved a front page in the history of Florida's sol- diers :


"THIRD ARMY CORPS, August 6, 1863.

' ' To the Editors of the Enquirer :

"GENTLEMEN, In the letter which I addressed to you a few days ago, correcting the statements of ' P. W. A.' the correspondent of the Savannah Republican, I omitted to take notice of the following sentence : ' Perry's brigade advanced a short distance, but did not become fully engaged.' This is quite as incorrect as the other state- ments which I have contradicted. Perry's brigade, under the com- mand of Colonel David Lang, advanced as bravely, as perseveringly, and as far as any troops could have done in the same situation.

"They were hotly engaged suffered heavier in loss in killed and wounded, in proportion to their numbers, than any brigade in the army, and did not retire until compelled, like all the others, to do so by the superior force of the enemy, and the great strength of his position.

" By giving this communication a place in your columns you will render an act of justice to brave men, whose honor and reputation so take pleasure in defending against the incorrectness of the state- ment, and the inferences which might be drawn from any omission to notice it.

" I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

" R. H. ANDERSON, Major-General."

Soon after the return of the army to Virginia, the author having received and accepted the appointment of ist lieutenant of Company "D," of the ist Florida cavalry, doing duty with the Army of the