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[129] by Colonel Walker's brigade, who had received no such order, as Colonel Walker informed me. Shortly after my reaching the railroad, a message was sent to me, through Colonel McGowan, Fourteenth South Carolina regiment, from one of Lieutenant-General Jackson's staff, countermanding the order for a general advance of the line. I accordingly marched the brigade back to the position which it had held during the day, where we bivouacked for the night.

I desire to mention the good conduct of Sergeant Pratt, Company B, Orr's regiment rifles, who had rallied a squad of his company after his regiment had been broken and driven off by the enemy, and came to me and asked me to assign him a position, which I did, on the right of my own regiment. Nothing of moment occurred after this day's (thirteenth) engagement. The brigade suffered severely, considering that only two regiments were actually engaged with the enemy. Lists of killed and wounded, amounting to three hundred and sixty-three, have been already forwarded to you.

I am, Major,

Very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

D. H. Hamilton, Colonel, commanding Second Brigade, Light Division.

Report of Brigadier-General Archer.

headquarters Archer's brigade, A. P. Hill's Light division, December 20, 1862.
To Major B. C. Morgan, Assistant Adjutant-General, Light Division:
Major: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of my brigade in the battle of Fredericksburg:

On arriving from sick leave Saturday morning, I found my brigade posted in the edge of a wood before Bernard's house, overlooking the plain through which the railroad and Bowling Green turnpike pass, the former at a distance from my front of about two hundred and fifty yards, the latter of about three quarters of a mile, my left resting where the wood extends forward to the front to a point beyond the railroad. General Lane's brigade was on my left, with an interval of about six hundred yards between us, while (as I was informed) General Gregg's brigade was immediately behind the interval, close enough to prevent my being flanked. On my right I found Lieutenant-Colonel Walker, with fifteen pieces of light artillery, supported by Colonel Brockenbrough's brigade. As the fog cleared away, the enemy was seen advancing, from the Bowling Green road, and a little after nine o'clock A. M. several batteries were brought forward and placed in position about one thousand yards from us, which were fired on by some of our batteries, far off to the right, and with which they carried on a brisk exchange of shots for about an hour, occasionally throwing shell into the wood where I was posted. About half past 10 o'clock A. M., they turned all their guns on our position, and, after thirty or forty minutes severe shelling, their lines of infantry formed, and advanced rapidly to the attack. When they had arrived near enough, I perceived them massing in front of and entering the point of wood which I have before mentioned as projecting on my left, beyond the railroad, and immediately sent my ordnance officer, Lieutenant Lemmon, to warn General Gregg that it was time for him to move forward into the interval between Lane's and my brigade, to prevent my being flanked. Shortly after, fearing that General Gregg might be too late, I drew out the right battalion (Fifth Alabama) and ordered it to the left. When the enemy in my front arrived near the railroad, my brigade opened a rapid and destructive fire upon them, which soon checked their career, and forced them to retire and take shelter in the railroad track, from which they kept up a desultory fire upon our line. In the mean time, the column which had entered the point of wood on my left succeeded in passing round my left flank, and attacked the Nineteenth Georgia and Fourteenth Tennessee in rear and flank. These regiments were compelled to retire, leaving about one hundred and sixty prisoners in the enemy's hands. The greater part of the Seventh Tennessee also, seeing the regiments on their left give way, and hearing the cry that the enemy was in their rear, left the trenches in disorder. The First Tennessee, together with Lieutenants Timberlake, Foster, Wilmouth, and Baird, of the Seventh Tennessee, and a portion of the latter regiment, held its ground gallantly, and, after its ammunition was exhausted, charged, under Lieutenant-Colonel George, (Col. Turney having been severely wounded early in the action,) across the railroad track, with Colonel Hoke's brigade, of Early's division, and returned to its original position when the charge was over.

The Fifth Alabama battalion, which I had sent from the right to aid in opposing the enemy on the left, discharged their duty faithfully, first under Major Vandegraff, and, after he was wounded, under Captain Stewart.

After sending Lieutenant Lemmon, I also sent my aid-de-camp, Lieutenant Thomas, to explain the urgency of the case to General Gregg, and to bring down another brigade in support of my front, which, although not then pressed in front, had nearly exhausted its ammunition.

General Gregg's and Lawton's brigades and the Fifth Alabama battalion drove back the enemy, who had passed my flank, and Colonel Hoke, in command of Trimble's brigade, came down. to the edge of the wood, my original position, which I still maintained with the right of my brigade, but with empty rifles and cartridge-boxes. The whole line then charged over the field beyond the railroad. When it returned to the edge of the wood I drew back my troops about thirty yards, re-formed my brigade, and remained in support of the front line, (Hoke's brigade, which had relieved me in the trenches.)

I take pleasure in reporting that the attack along my whole front was gallantly and successfully repelled by my brigade. No enemy ever arrived within fifty yards of my front, and even

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