Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 29.djvu/368

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352 Southern Historical Society Papers.

or so. Finally a courier galloped up to General Archer, delivered a message, and then galloped off. Then the General walked in front of us and gave the command, "Attention ! " in a loud, commanding tone. At this command the whole line arose. The next command was: Forward, march." We moved out in regular line of battle toward the enemy's impregnable lines of breastworks. Our general was in front regarding the charge. About the time we got to the top of the little knoll the command was given: "Right shoulder, shift arms, charge ! "

An incessant fire was being poured into our lines. Young Jim Crow, of Company B, was here shot through the arm, right by my side. The regular rebel yell was then raised. Then across a level plain, through an old field, over deep gullies, for about six hundred yards we charged the enemy in his stronghold. We got to within about one hundred and fifty yards of their lines, when we delivered cur first fire. At this time I kept moving on toward them, not thinking that our lines would retreat or fall back after getting that near, although the fire from the enemy's triple lines was furious, and the boys began to waver. Just then General Archer waved his sword over his head, and gave the command: "Follow me!" That command was ringing in my ears until I was shot. I moved on my color-guard was near me until within about fifteen or twenty paces of their front line, when I looked back to see if the boys were coming ; just then I was shot through my right hip. I did not know how badly I was wounded ; I only knew that I was shot down. I raised on my hands like a lizzard on a fence rail and took in the situation as best I could. I soon decided if I could get up I had better do so. It seemed like death either way, but I determined to make the effort to 'get away. I got up. but I found I could not walk, and if I made the trip at all I would have to drag my leg. I grasped my wounded leg with my right hand and started. Just then I saw four of the boys lying down, but I could not tell whether they were all dead or not. I made my way back, dragging my leg, under a galling fire, when a minie ball struck my left wrist, and tore it up and took off my thumb at the same time. I mended my gait a little toward a deep gully. Before I reached it I looked back to see if the "Yanks" were coming, and just at that moment a ball drew a little blood from under my chin. A few more hops and I tumbled down into the deep gully. I wanted to stay there, but the boys insisted that as I was badly wounded I had better try and get to the rear or I would be captured.