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[146] General Hill's-but before my dispositions were made, the enemy began to show large bodies of men in front of the town, most of which were directed upon the position which I held, and almost at the same time a portion of the force opposed to General Hill changed position so as to occupy the woods on the summit of the same ridge I occupied (I refer to the forest touching the railroad, and extending along the summit of the ridge towards my position, as far as the Mummasburg road, which crossed the ridge at the base of the hill I held). Either these last troops, or others which had hitherto been unobserved behind the same body of woods, soon made their appearance directly opposite my centre. Being thus threatened from two directions, I determined to attack with my centre and right, holding at bay still another force, then emerging from the town (apparently with the intention of turning my left), with Doles' brigade, which was moved somewhat to the left for this purpose, and trusting to this gallant brigade thus holding them until General Early's division arrived, which I knew would be soon, and which would strike this portion of the enemy's force on the flank before it could overpower Doles. At this moment Doles' brigade occupied the open plain between the Middletown road and the foot of the ridge before spoken of. The Alabama brigade, with a wide interval between it and Doles, extended from this plain up the slope of the ridge and over its summit. Iverson's brigade extended from the summit down the western or right slope of the ridge. Daniel's brigade supported Iverson's, and extended some distance to the right of it. Ramseur was in reserve. All the troops were in the woods except Doles' and a portion of “Rodes'” (O'Neal's) brigade, but all were subjected to some loss or annoyance from the enemy's artillery.

Whilst making some examination into the position and apparent intentions of the enemy, with the view of attacking him, this artillery fire became so annoying that I ordered the Alabama brigade to fall back from the line it had occupied, abreast with Iverson, so as to obtain some little shelter for the troops. The right regiment, Third Alabama, was under my order placed on a line with Daniel's brigade, Colonel O'Neal being instructed to form the balance of the brigade upon it. These dispositions were but temporary and unimportant, and are mentioned only because they are necessary to a full understanding of Colonel O'Neal's report.

Finding that the enemy was rash enough to come out from the woods to attack me, I determined to meet him when he got to the

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Mummasburg (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)
Middletown (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)
Alabama (Alabama, United States) (1)

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George Doles (5)
E. A. O'Neal (3)
Alfred Iverson (3)
Junius Daniel (2)
Robert E. Rodes (1)
S. D. Ramseur (1)
A. P. Hill (1)
Jubal A. Early (1)
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