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[44] whole line. This forced me to withdraw my brigade — the troops on my right having already done so. We fell back as well as could be expected, reformed immediately in rear of the artillery, as directed by General Trimble, and remained there until the following morning.

I cannot speak too highly of my brigade in this bloody engagement. Both officers and men moved forward with a heroism unsurpassed, giving the brigade-inspector and his rear guard nothing to do. Our great loss tells but too sadly of the gallant bearing of my command-six hundred and sixty (660) out of an effective total of thirteen hundred and fifty-five, (1,355) including ambulance corps and rear guard-our loss on the 1st and 2nd being but slight.1

1 General Trimble writes as follows of the third day's fight:

On the morning of the 3d I had been put in command, by order of General Lee, of two of the brigades of General Pender, who had been wounded. These were both of North Carolina troops, commanded by J. H. Lane and Alfred M. Scales. On taking command of these troops, entire strangers to me, and wishing as far as I could to inspire them with confidence, I addressed them briefly-ordered that no gun should be fired until the enemy's line was broken, and that I should advance with them to the farthest point.

When the charge commenced, about 3 P. M., I followed Pettigrew (Heth's division), about one hundred and fifty yards in rear — a sufficient distance to prevent the adverse — fire raking both ranks as we marched down the slope. Notwithstanding the losses as we advanced, the men marched with the deliberation and accuracy of men on drill. I observed the same in Pettigrew's line. When the latter was within one hundred, or one hundred and fifty yards from the Emmettsburg road, they seemed to sink into the earth under the tempest of fire poured into them. We passed over the remnant of their line, and immediately after some one close by my left sung out, “Three cheers for the old North State,” when both brigades sent up a hearty shout, on which I said to my aid, “ Charley, I believe those fine fellows are going into the enemy's line.”

They did get to the road, and drove the opposing line from it. They continued there some minutes, discharging their pieces at the enemy. The loss here was fearful, and I knew that no troops could long endure it. I Was anxious to know how things went on with the troops on our right, and taking a quick but deliberate view of the field over which Pickett had advanced, I perceived that the enemy's fire seemed to slacken there, and men in squads were falling back on the West side of the Emmettsburg road. By this I inferred that Pickett's division had been repulsed, and, if so, that it would be a useless sacrifice of life to continue the contest. I therefore did not attempt to rally the men who begun to give back from the fence.

As I followed the retiring line, on horseback at a walk, to the crest of Seminary Ridge, under the increasing discharge of grape, shell, and musketry, I had cause to wonder how any one could escape wounds or death.

On reaching the summit of the ridge, I found the men had fallen into line behind some rude defenses. I said, “That is right, my brave fellows; stand your ground, and we will presently serve these chaps as they have us.” For, by all the rules of warfare, the Federal troops should (as I expected they would) have marched against our shattered columns, and sought to cover our army with an overwhelming defeat.

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