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Goldsborough (search for this): chapter 1.3
osition of Gloucester Point, and of a well conducted naval attack up the York, but it was nevertheless determined to hold the line as long as possible, as the possession of the Peninsula was considered necessary to the safety of Norfolk. The estimate formed by the enemy of the strength of the Peninsula line was very much at variance with the true state of the case. Gen. McClellan says in his report that to have attacked Yorktown by land would have been simple folly, and that as flag officer Goldsborough, of the Navy, reported it impossible to gather sufficient naval force to attempt it by water, and also impossible to advance up the James, on acount of the Merrimac, the only alternative left him was to take Yorktown by siege. On the 4th of April, General McClellan having arrived at Fortress Monroe and taken command in person, put in motion towards Yorktown the force already assembled, consisting of fifty-eight thousand men and one hundred guns, and at 10 A. M. of the 5th this
osses of each brigade of Longstreet's division are not on record. Of the Federal losses four hundred and fifty-six were killed, one thousand four hundred wounded, and three hundred and seventy-two missing. Of these Hookers division bore the greater share, his report giving three hundred and thirty-eight killed, nine hundred and two wounded, three hundred and thirty-five missing. Hancock's loss in his affair with Early is stated by McClellan at only thirty-one, but perhaps more correctly by Swinton at one hundred and twenty-nine. Immediately after dark Longstreet began the withdrawal of his division, leaving D. H. Hill as rear-guard. The rain still fell, the night was cold, and the condition of the roads was such, that it really seemed impossible for man or horse to move over them. The sufferings of that night will probably never be forgotten, either by the worn out brigades, who, after the long day's fight, waded and stumbled all night in the mud, or by those who, without fires
W. F. Smith (search for this): chapter 1.3
and Pryor, were now added to his command, which was styled the Central forces. General Magruder's division held the Warwick below Longstreet's right, and embracing dam number one and Lee's mill. The division of General Smith was held in reserve, portions of it occasionally relieving brigades in the trenches at exposed points. The actual hostilities between the two armies were limited to sharp-shooting and artillery duelling until the 16th of April, when an attempt was made by General W. F. Smith to get a foot-hold upon the Confederate side of the Warwick, at dam number one. The position was defended by a single available gun (a six-pounder of Stanley's Georgia battery,) a few rifle pits on the bank, and an unfinished breastwork a hundred yards in rear. The inundation in front was over a hundred yards in width, about four feet deep, and overgrown with heavy timber and brushwood. A sharp cannonade was maintained upon it for two hours during the morning, and at 3 o'clock in t
ll within five miles of Williamsburg, and which was at once turned back. General Johnston also returned to the field with it, but did not assume the command. Pending the arrival of these troops, the remaining brigades of Longstreet's division, Pickett's and Colston's, were brought upon the field, and the latter being held in reserve, General R. H. Anderson (who in person had supervised all the movements of the morning), was ordered to renew the charge upon the enemy's position. Accordingly, about 1 P. M. the attack upon the enemy's left was recommenced by General Anderson, with Wilcox's and Pickett's brigades, and the First Virginia regiment of A. P. Hill's brigade. (The remainder of A. P. Hill's brigade had entirely expended its ammunition and was held in reserve, close behind the line), supported by Dearing's battery and a section of McCarthy's. The fighting which ensued was severe and prolonged, but resulted in a considerable advance of the Confederate line, the capture of a F
John J. Garnett (search for this): chapter 1.3
n was, immediately on its arrival, deployed for an attack, but on moving forward through the dense wood behind which it formed, it was thrown into confusion, and night coming on, only a little skirmishing ensued. About sundown General Longstreet was ordered to relieve the troops in position with one of his brigades. As his brigades were all small, two were sent, those of Anderson and Prior, by which the lines were occupied during the night with Macon's battery and two sections under Captains Garnett and McCarthy. On the morning of the 5th the bulk of the Confederate army, with its trains, was pushed forward as fast as possible through a severe rain storm, which converted the roads into quick sands and quagmires, probbably the worst that the war produced. Longstreet's division, between 10,000 and 11,000 strong, was left as a rear guard. During the night the division of General Hooker, 9,000 strong, had arrived on the field, opposite the Confederate right, and as soon after dayl
Jubal A. Early (search for this): chapter 1.3
eral Longstreet dispatched a portion of it toward his left, and General Early, discovering Hancock's position, got permission to take his briirected to accompany the movement, took charge of the right wing of Early's brigade, composed of the Fifth and the Twenty-Third North Carolina regiments, while General Early in person led the left wing, the Twenty-Fourth and Thirty-Eighth Virginia. Not understanding the topographyough it the regiments were entirely separated from each other. General Early, with the Twenty-Fourth Virginia (Colonel Terry) was the first the Twenty-Fourth Virginia, which returned the fire, and led by General Early in person, charged with a yell across the open field at the batrain, in the face of a murderous fire, which killed or disabled General Early and half of their field officers, the shattered lines traversed hundred and thirty-five missing. Hancock's loss in his affair with Early is stated by McClellan at only thirty-one, but perhaps more correct
R. S. Ewell (search for this): chapter 1.3
ng the full development of the enemy's plans. On the 6th, the division of General D. H. Hill was dispatched to Yorktown, moving by rail to Richmond and by steamer to Grove wharf, on the James. It was followed in a few days by the divisions of Longstreet and G. W. Smith, a part marching down the Peninsula, as the transportation was insufficient. D. H. Hill's advance reached Grove wharf on the 9th, and by the 20th the greater part of the three divisions had all arrived. The division of General Ewell was left near Gordonsville in observation of the line of the Rapidan, where it remained until the 30th of April, when it joined General Jackson in the Valley. On the arrival of General Johnston on the Peninsula, the Confederate forces now numbering fifty-three thousand, were positioned as follows: Gloucester Point, Yorktown, and the adjacent redoubts were held by D. H. Hill's division. Longstreet in the centre held the line of the Warwick, embracing the works at Wynn's mill, and dams
R. A. Pryor (search for this): chapter 1.3
the centre held the line of the Warwick, embracing the works at Wynn's mill, and dams No. 3 and No. 2. The brigades of Brigadier-Generals Featherston, Colston and Pryor, were now added to his command, which was styled the Central forces. General Magruder's division held the Warwick below Longstreet's right, and embracing dam nu the forest was also levelled, so as to give a range of twelve hundred yards to the guns in Fort Magruder. Anderson's brigade occupied this fort and the vicinity; Pryor's brigade being on its right. The remainder of Longstreet's division was in bivouac beyond Williamsburg; General Longstreet simply standing on the defensive to confederates, as usual, fired only by file. While matters were progressing thus upon the right, R. H. Anderson's brigade under Colonel Jenkins, with a portion of Pryor's, supported by Stribling's battery and Pelham's horse-artillery, and the fire of Fort Magruder, made an attack upon the enemy's position in front of the fort, and
Wade Hampton (search for this): chapter 1.3
djoining Confederate entrenchments were for awhile entirely within the enemy's power; but some delay was made to reconnoitre the position and to open a battery, and this delay enabled Kershaw's and Semmes's brigades, of McLaws's division and Macon's battery, to regain the works by a long double-quick through the mud. A little long-range firing then ensued in reply to the Yankee artillery and carbines, until the arrival of General Stuart with the rest of the Confederate cavalry. On this General Hampton with his brigade made a charge upon the enemy's position, using the sabre, and capturing one of his guns and some caissons, and drove him back upon Smith's division of infantry, which had begun to arrive in his rear. Smith's division was, immediately on its arrival, deployed for an attack, but on moving forward through the dense wood behind which it formed, it was thrown into confusion, and night coming on, only a little skirmishing ensued. About sundown General Longstreet was ord
sed his balloons constantly to overlook the Confederate positions, and seemed to command a view of everything that was done, but, strange to say, the information from this source seems to be the most unreliable of all that misled the Federal commander as to his adversary's numbers and movements. General Johnston was much more accurately informed, although the character of the lines was very unfavorable for secret service. A very daring and successful scouting expedition was made by Lieutenant Causey, C. S. A., who was put ashore by a boat at Sewell's Point, on a rainy night, and remained a week within the enemy's lines. He then got possession of a skiff and returned on another favorable night, bringing very accurate returns of the enemy's force and full information of his siege operations. The dangers of the flank on York river, and perhaps some apprehensions of the effect upon his earthworks of the enemy's one hundred and two hundred pounder rifles and thirteen inch mortars,
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