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[288] when, on the morning of the sixteenth, it was discovered that he had availed himself of the darkness of night, and the prevalence of a violent storm of wind and rain, to recross the river. The town was immediately reoccupied, and our positions on the river bank resumed.

In the engagement, more than nine hundred prisoners and nine thousand stand of arms were taken. A large quantity of ammunition was found in Fredericksburgh. The extent of our casualties will appear from the accompanying report of the Medical Director.

We have again to deplore the loss of valuable lives. In Brigadier-Generals Gregg and Cobb the Confederacy has lost two of its noblest citizens, and the army two of its bravest and most distinguished officers. The country consents to the sacrifice of such men as these, and the gallant soldiers who fell with them, only to secure the inestimable blessing they died to obtain. The troops displayed, at Fredericksburgh, in a high degree, the spirit and courage that distinguished them throughout the campaign; while the calmness and steadiness with which orders were obeyed, and manoeuvres executed, in the midst of battle, evinced the discipline of a veteran army. The artillery rendered efficient service on every part of the field, and greatly assisted in the defeat of the enemy. The batteries were exposed to an unusually heavy fire of artillery and infantry, which officers and men sustained with a coolness and courage worthy of the highest praise. Those on our right, being without defensive works, suffered more severely.

Among those who fell was Lieutenant-Colonel Coleman, First regiment Virginia artillery, who was mortally wounded while bravely discharging his duty.

To the vigilance, boldness, and energy of General Stuart and his cavalry is chiefly due the early and valuable information of the movements of the enemy. His reconnoissances frequently extended within the Federal lines, resulting in skirmishes and engagements in which the cavalry was greatly distinguished. In the battle of Fredericksburgh, the cavalry effectually guarded our right, annoying the enemy and embarrassing his movements, by hanging on his flank and attacking, when opportunity occurred. The nature of the ground and the relative positions of the armies prevented them from doing more.

To Generals Longstreet and Jackson great praise is due for the disposition and management of their respective corps. Their quick perception enabled them to discover the projected assaults upon their positions, and their ready skill to devise the best means to resist them. Besides their services in the field, which every battle of the campaign, from Richmond to Fredericksburgh, has served to illustrate, I am also indebted to them for valuable counsel, both as regards the general operations of the army, and the execution of the particular measures adopted.

To division and brigade commanders I must also express my thanks for the prompt, intelligent, and determined manner in which they executed their several parts.

To the officers of the general staff, Brigadier-General R. H. Chilton, Adjutant and Inspector-General, assisted by Major Peyton; Lieutenant-Colonel Corley, Chief Quartermaster; Lieutenant-Colonel Cole, Chief Commissary; Surgeon Guild, Medical Director, and Lieutenant-Colonel B. G. Bald-in, Chief of Ordnance, were committed the care of their respective departments, and the charge of supplying the demands upon each. They were always in the field, anticipating, as far as possible, the wants of the troops.

My personal staff were unremittingly engaged in conveying and bringing information from all parts of the field. Colonel Long was particularly useful before and during the battle, in posting and securing the artillery, in which he was untiringly aided by Captain S. R. Johnson, of the Provisional Engineers; Majors Talcott and Venable, in examining the ground and the approaches of the enemy; Majors Taylor and Marshall, in communicating orders and intelligence.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. E. Lee, General.


Appendix to General Lee's Report of the operations of the army of Northern Virginia.

General orders no. 75.

headquarters army of Northern Virginia, June 24, 1862.
I. General Jackson's command will proceed to-morrow from Ashland toward the Slash Church, and encamp at some convenient point west of the Central Railroad. Branch's brigade, of A. P. Hill's division, will also, to-morrow evening, take position on the Chickahominy, near Half Sink. At three o'clock Thursday morning, twenty-sixth instant, General Jackson will advance on the road leading to Pale Green Church, communicating his march to General Branch, who will immediately cross the Chickahominy, and take the road leading to Mechanicsville. As soon as the movements of these columns are discovered, General A. P. Hill, with the rest of his division, will cross the Chickahominy near Meadow Bridge, and move direct upon Mechanicsville. To aid his advance, the heavy batteries on the Chickahominy will, at the proper time, open upon the batteries at Mechanicsville. The enemy being driven from Mechanicsville, and the passage across the bridge opened, General Longstreet, with his division and that of General D. H. Hill, will cross the Chickahominy at or near that point--General D. H. Hill moving to the support of General Jackson, and General Longstreet supporting General A. P. Hill--the four divisions keeping in communication with each other, and moving in echelon on separate roads, if practicable; the left division in advance, with skirmishers and sharp-shooters extending in their front, will sweep down the Chickahominy and endeavor to drive the enemy from his position above New-Bridge; General Jackson, bearing well to his left, turning


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