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[250] the battery was covered with abattis. The position was most formidable.

The assault was made by Pender's brigade, of A. P. Hill's division, on the right, and by Ripley's brigade on the right in front. Gen. Pender's brigade had been thrown out in advance, in observation on the enemy's left, when Ripley's brigade coming up, Gen. D. H. Hill ordered two of Gen. Ripley's regiments — the Forty-fourth Georgia and the First North-Carolina--to operate on the right with Gen. Pender, while the Forty-eighth Georgia and the Third North-Carolina remained in front. Gen. Lee then ordered the battery to be charged. The attempt was made. They all moved forward to the attack together. They cleared the rifle-pits and gained the creek, within one hundred yards of the battery; but there was still the creek and the abattis to cross.

The fire of shot, shell, canister and musketry from the enemy's works was, meanwhile, murderous. The Forty-fourth Georgia and First North-Carolina were heavily cut up and thrown into confusion, owing to the heavy loss of officers. Gen. Pender's brigade was likewise repulsed from the batteries with severe loss.

At this juncture, while the troops were holding this position, Rhett's battery of D. H. Hill's division, succeeded in crossing the broken bridge over the Chickahominy, and took position on the high ground immediately in front of the enemy's batteries, and opened a steady and destructive fire over the heads of our troops, with telling effect upon the enemy's infantry, almost silencing their fire, and drawing the fire of their batteries from our own infantry upon themselves, with the loss of a number of men and horses. Reinforced then by Bondurant's battery and one of Gen. A. P. Hill's batteries, a steady fire was continued, while our infantry held their position about three hundred yards from the enemy's batteries, until half-past 9 o'clock P. M., when the enemy's batteries ceased firing. At ten o'clock P. M. our batteries ceased also. During the night, at about twelve o'clock, the enemy abandoned some of his batteries, burning platforms, etc.

Storming of Gaines's Mill.

Early the next morning, being Friday, Generals Gregg and Prior, of Longstreet's corps, turned the enemy's left flank, and carried, with the bayonet, what guns still remained in their batteries, in the front and to the right of Mechanicsville. It was said by many that this was the proper movement to have been made on the evening previous, and blame is attached to the order given to storm the work in front with an entirely inadequate force.

In the mean time the grand advance en echelon again began. The troops of D. H. Hill, having all joined their proper divisions, marched by the Mechanicsville road to join Jackson. The junction was made at Bethesda Church, Jackson coming from Ashland. Both corps then proceeded to Cold Harbor, Hill in front. Longstreet proceeded by the right of Ellyson's Mills toward Dr. Gaines's farm, and A. P. Hill in the same direction, on the left of Longstreet. At this point they came upon the enemy, strongly posted upon high and advantageous ground. The line of battle formed was as follows: Longstreet on the right, resting on the Chickahominy swamp; A. P. Hill on his left; then Whiting, then Ewell, then Jackson, (the two latter under Jackson's command,) then D. H. Hill on the left of the line, the line extending in the form of a crescent beyond New Cold Harbor, south toward Baker's Mills.

At about twelve o'clock M., the batteries of D. H. Hill, consisting of Hardaway's, Carter's, Bondurant's, Rhett's, Peyton's and Clarke's, under command of Majors Pierson and Jones, were massed on our left. Capt. Bondurant advanced to the front, and took position near the powerful batteries of the enemy's artillery. But it was soon found impossible to hold the position. He was overpowered and silenced. Other batteries soon, however, came forward successively to the front of the infantry, about three hundred yards in rear of Bondurant's position. Hardaway took up the fight with rifled guns. The object was to draw the attention of the enemy from Longstreet's contemplated attack. At about half-past 3 o'clock P. M., Longstreet commenced firing and driving the enemy down the Chicka-hominy. Hardaway then ceased firing, and the other divisions on the left of Longstreet successively took up the fight — the enemy retreating and being driven back toward D. H. Hill's artillery, on our left. The artillery being reinforced by a section of a Baltimore battery from Jackson's division, with English Blakely guns, opened a furious fire on the enemy at about five o'clock P. M.

At four o'clock P. M. of Friday the enemy had reached Gaines's Mill, one of their strongest defences; and here, an hour later, the bloodiest contest occurred that had been witnessed during the campaign. Men who had gone through Manassas, Williamsburgh and the Seven Pines, declared that they had never seen war before. Without a knowledge of the ground, but little conception can be formed of the difficulties of the attack upon Gaines's Mill. Emerging from the woods the road leads to the left and then to the right, round Gaines's house, when the whole country, for the area of some two miles, is an open, unbroken succession of undulating hills. Standing at the north door of Gaines's house the whole country to the right, for the distance of one mile, is a gradual slope toward a creek, through which the main road runs up an open hill and then winds to the right. In front, to the left, are orchards and gullies running gradually to a deep creek. Directly in front, for the distance of a mile, the ground is almost table-land, suddenly dipping to the deep creek mentioned above, being faced by a timber-covered hill fronting all the table-land.

Beyond this timber-covered hill the country is again open, and a perfect plateau, a farm-house and out-houses occupying the centre, the main road mentioned winding to the right and through

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