Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 29.djvu/349

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ChancellorsvUle. 333

lop and dash to the front, and whenever he appeared the troops would break ranks and rush around him with the wildest cheers I ever heard from human throats. When night closed upon the scene the victory seemed to be complete. The infantry of the enemy had disappeared from our immediate front, falling back under cover of several batteries of artillery, which, halting upon every eminence, poured a furious fire of shot and shell down the road upon our ad- vancing columns. In order to avoid this furious fire as much as possible, our men were formed in columns and made to march up the edges of the dense wood, and parallel with the road. This they were able to do by the aid of the moon, which shone very brightly, rendering all objects in our immediate vicinity clearly distinct. About this time General A. P. Hill rode up, and Jackson and him- self had a conference of some length. I did not hear all that was said, but both were deeply absorbed, for shells from the battery of the enemy were bursting all around us and ploughing up the ground under our horses' feet without either of them taking the slightest no- tice of the little incident. As for myself, I cared but little either, as I was then impressed with the idea that the bullet had not been moulded which was to kill our General. The firing soon ceased and Hill rode away.


At this juncture the General had no officer with him, except Lieu- tenant Keith Boswell, an officer belonging to his signal corps, and myself, together with a dozen of my own men, who were riding be- hind. A Confederate brigade was marching slowly in column on the left of the road and close to the woods, Keith Boswell was riding on the right of the General, and myself on the left, between him and our lines. The General turned to me and asked: " Whose brigade is that?" " I don't know, sir," I replied, " but will find out in a moment." I at once rode up to our line and asked the first officer I met whose brigade it was. He replied: " Lane's North Carolina." I rode back to Jackson, "giving him the reply. " Go and tell the officer in command," he said, " to halt his brigade." I rode up to the same officer, gave the command, and told him that it came from General Jackson in person. The order was passed along the line, and the whole brigade halted at once, making a half-wheel to the right, facing the road, and rested upon their arms. We continued our movement in the same order, walking our horses very slowly towards the front of the brigade. Suddenly the General asked: