l and adjutant, finding it was the best they could do, surrendered at discretion; and Farley brought them quietly into our lines, with their excellent and well-equipped horses, away from their regiment, which was marching along at a distance of only a few hundred yards. The astonishment of the regiment at this sudden and inexplicable disappearance of its commander may be imagined.
Fitzhugh and I having been invited to supper with Captain Dearing, a friend of ours commanding a battery of Pickett's division in Longstreet's corps, who was encamped about two miles off, started on foot, late in the evening, for this entertainment, and after losing ourselves in the darkness, and getting our boots full of water in a swamp, at last reached the camp of the gay artilleryman, where we found large company and little supper.
The spread, indeed, consisted only of a small piece of pork and a canteen of bad apple-brandy; but wit and good-humour make amends for the lack of dishes, and our songs r
of intrenchments, concealed from the enemy's view by the thick underwood, which, except in a few small spaces, covers the ridge abundantly.
Longstreet's corps formed the left, Jackson's the right, of our lines.
Our extreme left, constituting Anderson's division, rested on a broad swampy ditch, which about two miles above Fredericksburg makes up from the Rappahannock; then came Ransom's and McLaws's divisions, the right wing of the latter extending across the Telegraph Road, there joining Pickett's troops; and farther on Hood's division, which occupied as nearly as possible the centre of our whole line of battle, at a point where the hills open into a small valley for the passage of the creek, Deep Run; yet further on came Early's division of Jackson's corps.
The extreme right was composed of A. P. Hill's division, holding in reserve the troops of Taliaferro.
The splendid division of D. H. Hill, having been kept back by some demonstrations of the enemy in the direction of Port Roy
ngton Artillery, under their gallant commander Colonel Walton; so that the assailants were received with a triple sheet of fire, which swept them away by hundreds.
The Federals certainly behaved with the utmost gallantry.
Line after line moved forward to the assault, only to recoil again and again from the murderous tempest of shot, shell, and bullets, and to strew yet more thickly with dead and wounded the crimsoned field, which was afterwards most appropriately named the slaughter-pen.
Pickett's division was but little engaged here, the wider open space of ground giving ample opportunity to our artillery to play upon the hostile columns, scattering them and throwing them into disorder even before they could form their lines of attack.
About three o'clock in the afternoon there seemed to be a new movement preparing on the enemy's left, and General Stuart, suspecting it might be a movement on our right flank, ordered me to proceed with twenty couriers to our extreme right, reco