Too high praise cannot be accredited to the officers and men for their gallantry, fortitude, and manly courage during this brief but arduous campaign. Expoxed as they had been for five days immediately preceding the fights, on the picket line, they were, of course, somewhat wearied, but the order to move forward and confront the enemy brightened every eye and quickened every step. Under fire all through Wednesday, Wednesday night, and Thursday, without being able effectually to return this fire, they bore all bravely, and led the march towards Chancellorsville on Friday morning in splendid order. The advance of the brigade on Friday afternoon was made under the very eyes of our departed hero, Jackson, and of Major-General A. P. Hill, whose words of praise and commendation, bestowed upon the field, we fondly cherish, and on Sunday the magnificent charge of the brigade upon the enemy's last and most terrible stronghold was made in view of Major-General Stuart, and our division commander Major-General R. E. Rodes, whose testimony, that it was the most glorious charge of that most glorious day, we are proud to remember, and to report to our kindred and friends. To enumerate all the officers and men who deserve special mention for their gallantry, would be to return a list of all who were on the field. All met the enemy with unflinching courage: and for the privations, hardships, and splendid marches, all of which were cheerfully borne, they richly deserve the thanks of our beautiful and glorious Confederacy. I cannot close without mentioning the conspicuous gallantry and great efficiency of my regimental commanders. Colonel Parker, of the Thirtieth, who was detached during the fight of Sunday to support a battery, and having accomplished that object, moved forward on his own responsibility, and greatly contributed to wrest the enemy's stronghold at Chancellorsville from their grasp, as well as prevent their threatened demonstrations upon the right of my brigade. The gallant Grimes of the Fourth, whose conduct on other fields gave promise of what was fully realized on this. Colonel Bennett, of the Fourteenth, conspicuous for his coolness under the hottest fire; and last, though not least, the manly and chivalrous Cox, of the Second, the accomplished gentleman, splendid soldier, and warm friend, who, though wounded five times, remained with his regiment until exhausted. In common with the entire command I regret his temporary absence from the field, where he loved to be. Major Hart, Second North Carolina troops, commanded the skirmishers faithfully and well. To the field and company officers, one and all, my thanks are due for the zeal and bravery displayed under the most trying circumstances. To the gentlemen of my staff I owe especial thanks for services rendered on the march and upon the field. Captain Seaton Gales, assistant adjutant-general, and Lieutenant Richmond, aid-de-camp, were with me all the time, promptly carrying orders under the very hottest fire. I take pleasure, too, in speaking of the bearing of private James Stinson, courier, a youth of twenty, who displayed qualities a veteran might boast of, and of the conduct of private J. F. Beggarly, also a courier to headquarters. To Dr. Briggs, senior surgeon of the brigade, my thanks are due for his skill, zeal, and care of the wounded. I am, Sir, very respectfully, Your obedient servant,
S. D. Ramseur, Brigadier-General, commanding.
Report of Brig.-General Barksdale.
Major: When General McLaws moved up the river on the night of the thirtieth of April, I was temporarily detached from my command, and ordered to report to General Early. My brigade was then at Marye's hill, with the exception of twelve companies, which were protecting the river from Taylor's hill to the Ferneyhough house. By General Early's order, I, with the Thirteenth and Seventeeth regiments, relieved the pickets of Generals Kershaw and Wofford above the railroad. The brigade was then extended over a picket line of not less than five miles. On Saturday appearances indicated that the enemy were leaving their encampments on this side of the river, and were marching to reenforce Hooker. By General Early's order, the Twenty-first regiment of my brigade was left to picket the river, while the other three regiments, with three of his brigades, proceeded to rejoin the main army at Chancellorsville. He had marched but a short distance, when it was reported that the enemy were advancing upon General Hays, who had been left with his brigade on the line from Hamilton's Crossing to Fredericksburg. General Early ordered the entire command to return to its former position. About two o'clock, on Sunday morning, having thrown a pontoon bridge over the river, the enemy commenced crossing into Fredericksburg in large numbers. I at once informed General Early of the fact, and asked for reenforcements. With several batteries, under the command of General Pendleton, and a single brigade of infantry, I had a front of not less than three miles to defend, extending from Taylor's hill on the left, to the foot of the hills in rear of the Howison house. The Twenty-first regiment was posted between the Marye house and the plank road, three companies of which were afterwards sent to the support of the Eighteenth regiment, which were stationed behind the stone wall at the Marye house. The Seventeenth regiment was placed in front of Lee's hill, and the Thirteenth still farther to the right. One regiment from General Hays's command was subsequently placed to the right of the Thirteenth. Four pieces of artillery were placed on the right of Marye's house, two on the left, and the balance on Lee's and the hills in the vicinity of the Howison house, thus making the only disposition of the small force at my command which, in my judgment, would prevent the enemy from passing the line.