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r junction by way of Ellyson's Mills.
McCall had entrusted Reynolds' brigade with the defence of the first pass, while Seymour was directed to guard the second.
His third brigade, commanded by Meade, was held in reserve.
A. P. Hill, having reached the Mechanicsville heights, deployed his division, nearly fourteen thousand men strong, in front of the formidable positions occupied by the Federals.
His namesake, D. H. Hill, followed in his rear for the purpose of extending to the left, with Ripley's brigade in advance.
Lee directed in person all the movements which were to place his army in line.
President Davis had come out of Richmond to witness the first act of this great conflict.
The Confederates knew that it was easy to turn the position of the Federals by attacking it from the north.
If McCall was supported on that side—that is to say, on his right—by considerable forces, Jackson could not fail to meet it on his route, and the noise of cannon would soon apprise his chief o