yell the Second brigade went through them, shattering, breaking, and routing them. The struggle was brief, but not a man faltered, and with closed ranks their rush was irresistible. They drove the enemy into the railroad cut and out of it. Just then Brigadier-General Starke came gallantly heading the Fourth brigade, and together we went after the flying foe. In a skirt of woods in front, a battery was attempting to cover their rally; but Major Seddon and the Irish battalion wrested a three-inch rifle gun from them, and bore it off. The Fourth brigade secured another. The Forty-second is entitled to the credit of capturing the colors of the attacking brigade, which was “Sickels's Excelsior,” having run over them after the enemy. The flag was taken up by the Fourth brigade, and I do not claim it for the Forty-second. Returning to the first position, we held it that night. The next day, Saturday, the thirtieth, the division was formed on the same ground, but in order--Third, First, Second, Fourth, placing my brigade on precisely the same ground it held on Friday. During the morning, the enemy sullenly felt along our line, at long range, with his artillery, occasionally making feints with infantry, which did not seem to be pressed with vigor, and it was difficult to understand whether he was whipped or not. He, however, took possession of Groveton, from which Hood had driven him, and the skirt of woods which we had carried, where Major Seddon captured the gun the preceding evening. I could see that some movements were being made in that skirt of woods as early as eight o'clock A. M., and during the day had frequent reports made to me to that effect. I therefore placed the Forty-second, Captain Penn, in the railroad cut; and having assigned Captain Goldsborough, of the late First Maryland, my old command, who was serving with me as a volunteer, to the Forty-eighth, as Adjutant, put it in a copse which ran at right angles from the railroad, and the right of the Forty-second, and fronted the woods in which the enemy were obviously making some movement. These positions overlook the enemy everywhere, and, being very strong, were the ones I had determined to take and hold, if attacked. The Twenty-first and Irish battalion I held in reserve, concealed in the woods on the hill, carefully instructing the officers, at the order, to charge without firing a shot. About four P. M., the movements of the enemy were suddenly developed in a decided manner. They stormed my position, deploying in the woods in brigade front, and then charging in a run, line after line, brigade after brigade, up the hill, on the thicket held by the Forty-eighth, and the railroad cut occupied by the Forty-second. But as they uncovered from the wood in which they had been massing during the whole day, I ordered the Twenty-first and Irish battalion to charge, which they did with empty guns. I halted them under the shelter of the cut, where, with the Forty-second, they held back the enormous force pressing up the hill on them. Lieutenant Dabney had, unfortunately, been wounded early in the day, and Captain Goldsborough, whom I had ordered to take command, had fallen by my side in the charge, leaving the Forty-eighth without a superior officer with them; and they were, consequently, soon driven out by the tremendous odds against them. But for a short time the three regiments above named, viz., the Forty-second, Twenty-first, and Irish battalion by themselves, breasted the storm, driving back certainly twenty (20) times their number. As soon as their position was known, the rest of the division came to their support, except the Third brigade, which, under Colonel Taliaferro, was employed in whipping a division by itself. Before the railroad cut the fight was most obstinate. I saw a Federal flag hold its position for half an hour, within ten yards of a flag of one of the regiments in the cut, and go down six or eight times; and after the fight a hundred dead were lying twenty yards from the cut, some of them within twenty feet of it. The men fought until their ammunition was exhausted, and then threw stones. Lieutenant Lewis Randolph, of the battalion, killed one with a stone, and I saw him afterward with his skull fractured. Dr. Richard P. Johnson, on my volunteer staff, having no arms of any kind, was obliged to have recourse to this means of offence from the beginning. As line after line surged up the hill, time after time, led up by their officers, they were dashed back on one another, until the whole field was covered with a confused mass of straggling, running, routed Yankees. They failed to take the cut. The battle of the left wing of the army was over, and the whole of Jackson's corps advanced about a mile, its right on the Warrenton road, toward the Stone Bridge, facing Bull Run. I was not further engaged that day. On Sunday, we crossed Sudley Ford, and that night bivouacked on the Aldie road, and on Monday, September first, was ordered by Brigadier-General Starke to hold the road leading from Chantilly to Centreville. Taking a position about two miles and a half from Centreville, I threw out the Twenty-first Virginia, Captain Witcher, holding half of it in reserve, and advancing the residue as skirmishers. They exchanged shots all day with the enemy's cavalry, who dismounted and engaged them. Having only orders to observe the large force which was apparent at Centreville, and hold it from attacking our flank, which was moving up toward Germantown, Captain Witcher was contented to drive back the dismounted cavalry. After sundown, Brigadier-General Drayton relieved me, and I rejoined the division. Tuesday morning, September second, the column marched beyond Dranesville, and bivouacked. Wednesday and Thursday, it passed through Leesburg. Friday it crossed the Potomac at White's Ford, Montgomery County, Maryland, and thence forded the Monocacy at the old glass works, and camped by the Three Springs, near Buckeye's town. On Saturday, it entered Frederick, and encamped on Norman's, to the north. Being ordered by General Starke to take command of the city with the brigade, I put it in camp in the
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Foreign accounts of the fight.
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