that I would not be able, if it were necessary, to state all the movements which were made. I can only advert to the positions of the respective regiments at one or two important junctures during the day. In the morning the regiments of the brigade were posted as follows: The Thirteenth South Carolina volunteers (Colonel Edwards) on the right; to his left, the First South Carolina volunteers, (Lieutenant-Colonel McCready;) to his left, the Twelfth South Carolina volunteers, (Colonel Barnes;) to his left, the Fourteenth South Carolina volunteers, (Colonel McGowan,) the latter regiment being thrown back along the fence bordering the field above referred to, and Orr's regiment of rifles (Colonel Marshall) behind the centre, in reserve. General Gregg and his staff and all the field officers were on foot. The fight was commenced by us. From the noise which came from the woods across the railroad, and the constant firing of the skirmishers, we knew that we were in the presence of the enemy, and General Gregg sent out Lieutenant-Colonel McCready, with his regiment, to ascertain his location and number. He had gone but a short distance into the woods beyond the railroad cut, when he fell upon a large column of the enemy and returned. General Gregg, having thus discovered them, directed the First and Twelfth regiments to advance and “drive back the enemy.” These regiments commenced the advance together, but as the enemy threatened to flank the line on both the right and left, they soon separated. The First, in order to protect its threatened right, inclined to the right, and handsomely drove the enemy up the railroad. Colonel Edwards (the Thirteenth) supported Lieutenant-Colonel McCready in the movement, and gallantly held his exposed position on the right, near the railroad, for the greater part of the day. The Twelfth being pressed by a heavy column on its left flank, Colonel Barnes changed front to the left, and charging in the most spirited manner, drove the enemy down the railroad, breaking and routing them as often as they attempted to make a stand. When we had driven off the enemy and was returning, Colonel Barnes was joined by Colonel Marshall, who had been sent to his assistance, and the two regiments again charged and drove a heavy body massing near the railroad. All the regiments at this time were recalled by an order not to advance, and in so doing bring on a general engagement, but to hold the position and act on the defensive. These dashing charges in advance were entirely successful, and at twelve M. our front was cleared of the enemy; but they soon began to close around us again. It happened that there was an interval of about a hundred and seventy-five yards between our right and the left of General Thomas's brigade. Opposite to this interval the railroad cut was very deep, and the enemy, getting into the cut at some point beyond, crawled, unobserved, down the excavation to a point opposite this interval, and, in very heavy force, made a sudden rush to enter this gap. The attack from that quarter was unexpected, and for a short time seemed likely to succeed. The assailants succeeded in getting nearly across the point of woods to the field on the north-west, thus for a moment cutting off and isolating our brigade; but it was only for a moment. The Fourteenth regiment South Carolina volunteers, which at, the time was in reserve, was promptly wheeled into the gap, and assisted by the left regiment of General Thomas's brigade, (believed to be the Forty-ninth Georgia,) and such parts of cur brigade as were near the point, drove them back across the railroad cut with great slaughter. The opposing forces at one time delivered their volleys into each other at the distance of ten paces. About three o'clock P. M. another most vigorous effort for the position was made from all the points held by the enemy, whose fire now formed a semicircle of flame and smoke, extending at least half round the devoted hill. For the first time they now came through the corner of the open field which has been so often referred to, and pressed heavily on Orr's rifles, which at this moment occupied the fence. Colonel J. Foster Marshall and Lieutenant-Colonel D. A. Ledbetter, together with many other gallant officers and soldiers of this regiment, fell here; but the obstinate enemy was again repulsed at all points, and driven beyond the railroad. From the long-continued struggle, the ammunition of the men was all expended; but the resolution of General Gregg to hold the position was unchanged. When Major-General Hill, commanding, sent to inquire whether he could hold out, he replied, modestly, he thought he could, adding, as if casually, that “his ammunition was about expended, but he still had the bayonet.” It was now four o'clock P. M., and there was no abatement in the fury of the assaults, when the brigades of Generals Branch and Early, having been sent to our assistance, came in most opportunely and gallantly. After these reenforcements had arrived and passed to the front, General Gregg collected the remnant of his regiments, and, placing them in line behind the troops now engaged, gave them instructions to lie down, and, if our friends were overpowered and had to fall back over them, to wait until the enemy was very near, then rise and drive them back at the point of the bayonet. The men all lay down as instructed, resolved, as the last resort, to try the virtue of the cold steel; but, happily, the necessity did not arise. The enemy were finally driven back at all points, and night closed upon us, occupying the identical spot which we were ordered to hold in the morning. We slept on the field of battle, and remained in position all the next day, whilst the great battle of the second Manassas was progressing on our right. The enemy made several attempts to advance, but the admirable practice of Captain McIntosh's battery kept them beyond musket range, scattering them with shot and shell every time they moved forward. Some few men were wounded by shell, but we were not very actively engaged on that day. Friday, the twenty-ninth, was the glorious but bloody day for the brigade. It may be allowed for us to claim that, by holding the left steady on Friday, we contributed something to the success
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Foreign accounts of the fight.
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