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[263] character and services were such as to demand for his own account, intended for the eye of the Commanding-General himself, some consideration in forming a correct estimate of the propriety of his course and the probabilities of capturing Cemetery Hill.

But the gentlemen who have undertaken to censure at least by implication what one of them styles “our inaction at that time,” have entirely overlooked Ewell's statements, and have followed in the rut of other writers who have given their crude views before Ewell's report was published.

It is very possible that General Johnson may have supposed that he was advancing to the attack of the enemy when he was halted near the College; or, it may be, and probably was the fact, that Ewell had ordered him to take possession of Culp's Hill, then supposed to be unoccupied, when he ordered him to the position he reached after dark; and that, when he received the order to draw his corps to the right, he countermanded the order to take possession of the hill, until General Lee had heard the representations that induced him to change his purpose in that respect; or, it may be, that Johnson was about to attack on the morning of the 2nd, when the message was sent him that all movements were to be suspended until Longstreet's guns were heard. In some one of these ways General Johnson fell into his mistake, for he was incapable of a misrepresentation, and no one can suspect for a moment that Colonel Taylor has intentionally misstated — the con. versation. There was simply a misconception somewhere.

The reference of Colonel Taylor to this conversation with Gen. Johnson is unfortunate, because both Ewell and Johnson are now dead, and of course their testimony is closed. General Johnson did not expect his statement to be incorporated into the history of that great battle, and therefore was not as explicit as he would have been had he anticipated the use to be made of that statement. We all know how liable all of us are to make mistakes and oversights in speaking casually of past events. This is peculiarly the case with many in recalling the events of the late war. In response to an enquiry from myself, I have received the following note from the gallant soldier who commanded the Stonewall brigade, in Johnson's division, at Gettysburg:

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