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[541] attack upon Early was in progress, the main body of the Federal infantry moved down from the wood, through the corn and wheatfields, and fell with great vigor upon our extreme left, and, by the force of superior numbers, bearing down all opposition, turned it, and poured a destructive fire into its rear. Campbell's brigade fell back in disorder. The enemy pushing forward, and the left flank of Taliaferro's brigade being, by these movements, exposed to a flank fire, fell back, as did also the left of Early's line, the remainder of his command holding its position with great firmness.

During the advance of the enemy, the rear of the guns of Jackson's division becoming exposed, they were withdrawn. At this critical moment, Branch's brigade, of Hill's division, with Winder's brigade farther to the left, met the Federal forces, flushed with their temporary triumph, and drove them back, with terrible slaughter, through the wood. The fight was still maintained with obstinacy between the enemy and the two brigades just named, when, Archer and Pender coming up, a general charge was made, which drove the enemy across the field into the opposite woods, strewing the narrow valley with their dead. In this charge, Archer's brigade was subjected to a heavy fire. At this time the Federal cavalry charged upon Taliaferro's brigade with impetuous valor, but were met with such determined resistance by Taliaferro's brigade in its front, and by so galling a fire from Branch's brigade in flank, that it was forced rapidly from the field, with loss and in disorder.

In the mean time, General Ewell, on the right, found himself kept back from advancing by the incessant fire from our batteries in the valley, which swept his only approach to the enemy's left. This difficulty no longer existing, he moved with his two brigades, Trimble's in the advance, and pressed forward under a heavy fire from the enemy's artillery, the front covered by skirmishers from the Fifteenth Alabama, and the brigades advancing in echelon of regiments. Thus repulsed from our left and centre, and now pressed by our right, centre, and left, the Federal force fell back at every point of their line, and commenced retreating, leaving their dead and wounded on the field of battle. Though late, I was so desirous of reaching Culpeper Court-House before morning, as to induce me to pursue. The advance was accordingly ordered-General Hill, with his division, leading; but owing to the darkness of the night, it was necessary to move cautiously. Stafford's brigade, which was in front, captured some prisoners. Before we had, probably, advanced more than a mile and a half, Farrow, my most reliable scout, reported to me that the enemy was but a few hundred yards from our advance. Pegram's battery, supported by Field's brigade, soon took position just beyond the wood through which we had passed, and opened upon the enemy. This well-directed and unexpected fire produced much disorder and confusion among that portion of the Federal troops. Three batteries were, however, soon opened in reply, and a heavy cannonade was continued for some time, causing Captain Pegram severe loss, and silencing him.

In the mean time, Colonel Jones, with the Seventh Virginia cavalry, had passed to our right and front. He succeeded in capturing some prisoners, one of whom reported that Federal reenforcements had arrived. Believing it imprudent to continue to move forward during the darkness, I ordered a halt for the night.

On the following morning, (tenth,) having reason to believe the Federal army had been so largely reinforced as to render it imprudent for me to attempt to advance farther, directions were given for sending the wounded to the rear, for burying the dead, and collecting arms from the battle-field. In the course of the same morning, General J. E. B. Stuart arrived on a tour of inspection. At my request he took command of the cavalry, and made a reconnoissance for the purpose of gaining information respecting the numbers and movements of the enemy. From his report, as well as from other sources of information, I was confirmed in my opinion that the heavy forces concentrated in front rendered it unwise, on my part, to renew the action. The main body of my troops were, however, so posted as to receive the attack, if the enemy decided to advance.

On the eleventh, a flag of truce was received from the enemy, who requested permission, until two o'clock, to remove and bury his dead, not already interred by our troops. This was granted, and the time subsequently extended, by request of the enemy, to five in the morning.

We captured four hundred prisoners, and among them Brigadier-General Prince; five thousand three hundred and two small arms, one twelve-pounder Napoleon and its caisson, with two other caissons and a limber; three colors, by Winder's brigade, one being from the Fifth Connecticut, and another from the Twenty-eighth New York.

The official reports of the casualties of my command in this battle show a loss of nineteen officers killed, and one hundred and fourteen wounded; of non-commissioned officers and privates, two hundred and four killed, and nine hundred and forty-six wounded, with thirty-one missing, making two hundred and twenty-three (223) killed, and one thousand and sixty (1060) wounded. Total loss of killed, wounded, and missing, one thousand three hundred and fourteen (1314.) This loss was probably about one half that sustained by the enemy.

I remained in position until the night of the eleventh, when I returned to the vicinity of Gordonsville, in order to avoid being attacked by the vastly superior force in front of me, and with the hope that, by thus falling back, General Pope would be induced to follow me until I should be reenforced.

The conduct of officers and men during the battle merits great praise. My chief of artillery, Colonel S. Crutchfield, ably discharged his duties. In the prompt transmission of orders, great assistance was received from Major E. F. Paxton, A. A. A. G.; Captain A. S. Pendleton, A. A. G.; First Lieutenant J. K. Boswell, Chief

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