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[226] defeated with great loss. “But,” says the Prince de Joinville,--
But exactly at this moment (six o'clock P. M.), new actors come upon the stage. Sumner, who has at last passed the river with Sedgwick's division on the bridge built by his troops, and who, with a soldier's instinct, has marched straight to the cannon through the woods, suddenly appears upon the flank of the hostile column which is trying to cut off Heintzelman and Keyes. He plants in a clearing a battery which he has succeeded in bringing up. His guns are not rifled guns, the rage of the hour, and fit only to be fired in cool blood, and at long range in an open country: they are real fighting guns, old twelve-pound howitzers carrying either a round projectile, which ricochets and rolls, or a good dose of grape. The simple and rapid fire of these pieces makes terrible havoc in the hostile ranks. In vain Johnston sends up his best troops against this battery, the flower of South Carolina, including the Hampton Legion; in vain does he come upon the field in person: nothing can shake the Federal ranks. When night falls, it was the Federals who, bayonet in hand, and gallantly led by Sumner himself, charged furiously upon the foe, and drove him before them, with fearful slaughter, as far as Fair Oaks Station.

Orders had been sent from Headquarters to General Sumner, at two o'clock, to move his division across the river. Two bridges had been built by his men, one opposite General Sedgwick's division, and one opposite General Richardson's,--both corduroy bridges. But the latter was already destroyed by the flood, and the former much injured. The roads, too, were deep and muddy; and it was not

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