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 hours. Huger took no part in the battle, contrary to the plans which had been agreed upon: Grouchy did not appear at Waterloo, as was expected. Sumner's arrival upon the field at six is paralleled by that of Blucher at Waterloo at about the same hour. So much for the points of resemblance between the two battles; but in other respects that of Fair Oaks illustrates the power of fortune over war. Had Huger's corps attacked us on the left flank at the same time that Hill and Longstreet did in front, we could hardly have escaped destruction. Thus the rain which swelled the stream and occasioned the attack also prevented it from being successful, by making impassable the road over which Huger was directed to move. We had also another piece of good fortune. Smith's corps, it will be remembered, was moved along the Nine-Mile road, to be ready to be employed against our right flank. General Johnston, the commander-in-chief, was with this corps, and, of course, directed its movements. He says in his official report that he accompanied this corps, so that he might be on a part of the field where he could observe and be ready to meet any counter-movement which might be made against his centre or left, and then adds, “Owing to some peculiar condition of the atmosphere, the sound of the musketry did not reach us. I consequently deferred giving the signal for General Smith's advance till four o'clock.” Thus the advance of Smith's corps was delayed two hours; and precious hours they were to us, because they enabled Sumner to get to the field and save us from being cut to pieces.
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