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[67] A division from the Twelfth corps, on the extreme right, reached the scene at this instant, and at the same time Sedgwick came up with the Sixth corps; having finished a march of nearly thirty-six consecutive hours. To what rescue they came their officers saw and told them. Weary as they were, barefooted, hungry, fit to drop for slumber, as they were, the wish for victory was so blended with the thought of exhaustion that they cast themselves, in turn, en masse into line of battle, and went down on the enemy with death in their weapons and cheers on their lips. The rebel's camel's back was broken by this “feather.” His line staggered, reeled and drifted slowly back, while the shouts of our soldiers, lifted up amid the roar of musketry over the bodies of the dead and wounded, proclaimed the completeness of their victory.

It may be imagined that I was astonished at the fact that we received no support after we had driven the Federals from the peach orchard and one thousand yards beyond. If General Ewell had engaged the army in his front at that time (say 4 o'clock) he would have prevented their massing their whole army in my front, and while he and I kept their two wings engaged Hill would have found their centre weak, and should have threatened it while I broke through their left and dislodged them. Having failed to move at 4 o'clock, while the enemy was in his front, it was still more surprising that he did not advance at 5 o'clock with vigor and promptness, when the trenches in front of him were vacated or rather held by one single brigade (as General Meades' testimony before the Committee on the Conduct of the War states). Had he taken these trenches and scattered the brigade that held them, he would have found himself in the Federals' flank and rear. His attack in the rear must have dislodged the Federals, as it would have been totally unexpected — it being believed that he was in front with me. Hill charging upon the centre at the same time would have increased their disorder and we should have won the field. But Ewell did not advance until I had withdrawn my troops, and the First corps, after winning position after position, was forced to withdraw from the field with two corps of their comrades within sight and resting upon their arms. Ewell did not move until about dusk (according to his own report). He then occupied the trenches that the enemy had vacated (see General Meade's report). The real cause of Ewell's non-compliance with General Lee's orders was that he had broken his line of battle by sending two brigades off on some duty up the York road. General Early says that my failure to attack at sunrise was the cause of Ewell's line being broken at the time I did attack. This is not only absurd but impossible. After sunrise that morning Colonel Venable and General Lee were at Ewell's headquarters discussing the policy of opening the attack with Ewell's corps. They left Ewell with this definite order: that he was to hold himself in readiness to support my attack when it was made. It is silly to say that he was ready at sunrise, when

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