Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 33.djvu/339

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Gen. Edward Johnson at Spotsylvania. 835

From the Times-Dispatch, November 26, 1905.


The Confederate General Who Met Bayonets of Enemy

With a Cane.

Wonderful Fighting Then. Graphic Story of the Spotsylvania Fight Told by Major Robert Hunter.

Major Robert W. Hunter is one of those soldiers of Virginia and the Confederacy to whose name may be written "from Manassas to Appomattox."

In the first battle he was in the Second Virginia Infantry of the Stonewall Brigade, and in the closing scene at Appomattox was on the staff of Major-General John B. Gordon, of Georgia, who after- wards became the successor of Jackson, Ewell and Early as com- mander of the Second Corps.

He was in Jackson's and in Early 's Valley campaigns alike, and in all the great battles in which the famous Second Corps partici- pated. Did he write his reminiscences, as it is hoped he may, there is no man living who could relate more of the vivid scenes of the wondrous story of the Army of Northern Virginia.

Enclosed is an account taken from his lips of the Bloody Angle of Spotsylvania, on the 1 2th of May. It is a finality on the ques- tion which sometimes has been raised by the uninformed with re- spect to Major-General Edward Johnson. So far from being sur- prised, he was most diligent and active to prevent the catastrophe which resulted, and his report shows it; but I will not anticipate Major Hunter's story. He became adjutant-general of Johnson's division shortly after the battle of Gettysburg, where Major Benja- min Watkins Leigh, his predecessor, was killed. Gallantly did he serve throughout the war, and on that terrific day at Spotsylvania, which he graphically recounts, Major-General Edward Johnson ("Old Alleghany," as the soldiers called him, on account of his sturdy fighting on Alleghany mountain), has never received the notice to which his long, arduous and great services and his notable feats of arms entitled him.

His adjutant-general, Major Hunter, who is as accomplished with