to form an almost impenetrable abatis. His artillery swept the few narrow roads by which his position could be approached from the front, and commanded the adjacent woods. The left of his line extended from Chancellorsville towards the Rappahannock, covering the Bark Mill Ford, where he communicated with the north bank of the river by a pontoon bridge. His right stretched westward along the Germana Ford road more than two miles. Darkness was approaching before the strength and extent of his line could be ascertained; and as the nature of the country rendered it hazardous to attack by night, our troops were halted, and formed in line of battle in front of Chancellorsville, at right angles to the plank road, extending on the right to the mine road, and to the left in the direction of the Catharine furnace. Colonel Wickham, with the Fourth Virginia cavalry and Colonel Owen's regiment, was stationed between the mine road and the Rappahannock. The rest of the cavalry was upon our left flank. It was evident that a direct attack upon the enemy would be attended with great difficulty and loss, in view of the strength of his position and his superiority of numbers. It was therefore resolved to endeavor to turn his right flank, and gain his rear, leaving a force in front to hold him in check and conceal the movement. The execution of this plan was intrusted to Lieutenant-General Jackson, with his three divisions. The commands of Generals McLaws and Anderson, with the exception of Wilcox's brigade, which during the night had been ordered back to Banks's Ford, remained in front of the enemy. Early on the morning of the second General Jackson marched by the Furnace and Brock roads, his movement being effectually covered by Fitz Lee's cavalry, under General Stuart in person. As the rear of the train was passing the furnace, a large force of the enemy advanced from Chancellorsville and attempted its capture. General Jackson had left the Twenty-third Georgia regiment, under Colonel Best, at this point, to guard his flank; and upon the approach of the enemy Lieutenant-Colonel J. T. Brown, whose artillery was passing at the time, placed a battery in position, to aid in checking his advance. A small number of men who were marching to join their commands, including Captain Moore, with his two companies of the Fourteenth Tennessee regiment, of Archer's brigade, reported to Colonel Brown, and supported his guns. The enemy was kept back by this small force until the train had passed, but his superior numbers enabled him subsequently to surround and capture the greater part of the Twenty-third Georgia regiment. General Anderson was directed to send a brigade to resist the further progress of this column, and detached General Posey for that purpose. General Posey became warmly engaged with a superior force, but being reenforced by General Wright, the enemy's advance was arrested. After a long and fatiguing march, General Jackson's leading division, under General Rodes, reached the old turnpike, about three miles in rear of Chancellorsville, at four P. M. As the different divisions arrived they were formed at right angles to the road — Rodes in front, Trimble's division, under Brigadier-General Colston, in the second, and A. P. Hill's in the third line. At six P. M. the advance was ordered. The enemy were taken by surprise, and fled, after a brief resistance. General Rodes's men pushed forward with great vigor and enthusiasm, followed closely by the second and third lines. Position after position was carried, the guns captured, and every effort of the enemy to rally defeated by the impetuous rush of our troops. In the ardor of pursuit, through the thick and tangled woods, the first and second lines at last became mingled, and moved on together as one. The enemy made a stand at a line of breastworks across the road at the house of Melzie Chancellor; but the troops of Rodes and Colston dashed over the intrenchments together, and the fight and pursuit were resumed and continued until our advance was arrested by the abatis in front of the line of works near the central position at Chancellorsville. It was now dark, and General Jackson ordered the third line, under General Hill, to advance to the front and relieve the troops of Rodes and Colston, who were completely blended, and in such disorder, from their advance through intricate woods and over broken ground, that it was necessary to reform them. As Hill's men moved forward, General Jackson, with his staff and escort, returning from the extreme front, met his skirmishers advancing, and in the obscurity of the night were mistaken for the enemy, and fired upon. Captain Boswell, chief engineer of the corps, and several others, were killed, and a number wounded. General Jackson himself received a severe injury, and was borne from the field. The command devolved upon Major-General Hill, whose division, under General Heth, was advanced to the line of intrenchments which had been reached by Rodes and Colston. A furious fire of artillery was opened upon them by the enemy, under cover of which his infantry advanced to the attack. They were handsomely repulsed by the Fifty-fifth Virginia regiment, under Colonel Mallory, who was killed while bravely leading his men. General Hill was soon afterwards disabled, and Major-General Stuart, who had been directed by General Jackson to seize the road to Ely's Ford, in rear of the enemy, was sent for to take command. At this time the right of Hill's division was attacked by the column of the enemy already mentioned as having penetrated to the furnace, which had been recalled to Chancellorsville to avoid being cut off by the advance of Jackson. This attack was gallantly met and repulsed by the Eighteenth and Twenty-eighth and a portion of the Thirty-third North Carolina regiments, Lane's brigade. Upon General Stuart's arrival, soon afterwards, the command was turned over to him by General Hill. He immediately proceeded to reconnoitre the ground and make himself acquainted with the disposition of the troops. The darkness of the night, and the difficulty of moving through
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Doc . 62 .-Hoisting the Black flag — official correspondence and reports.
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