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[225]

At one o'clock, our artillery opened, and for two hours rained an incessant storm of missiles upon the enemy's line. The effort was marked along my front, driving the enemy entirely from his guns.

The assault was then gallantly made. Heth's division and Trimble's two brigades on the left of Pickett. Anderson had been directed to hold his division ready to take advantage of any success which might be gained by the assaulting column, or to support it if necessary; and to that end, Wilcox and Perrin were moved forward to eligible positions. The assault failed, and after almost gaining the enemy's works, our troops fell back in disorder. The enemy made no attempt to pursue. Major-General Trimble, Brigadier-General Pettigrew and Colonel Fry (commanding Archer's brigade) were wounded while most gallantly leading their troops. The troops resumed their former positions and remained thus until the night of the 4th, when the march was taken towards Hagerstown by Fairfield and Waynesboroa. At Hagerstown we lay in line of battle from the 7th to the night of the 13th, when I moved my corps in the direction of the pontoon bridge at Falling Water. Being the rear guard of the army, such dispositions as were necessary were made to repel any advance of the enemy. Anderson's division crossed without molestation, and Pender's was in the act of crossing when the enemy made their appearance.

A small body of cavalry charged Pettigrew's brigade, and were annihilated. Only two of our men were killed, but, unfortunately for the service, one of these was the gallant and accomplished Pettigrew. Subsequently the enemy pushed on vigorously, and I directed General Heth to retire his troops and cross the river. In doing this some loss was sustained, principally in stragglers and not exceeding 500, composed of men from the various brigades of the army. Two pieces of artillery were broken down on this night march and abandoned. Colonel Walker brought off three guns captured on the field at Gettysburg. On the 21st the march was resumed towards Culpeper courthouse. On the 23d, Wright's brigade, under Colonel Walker, was left to guard Mannassas Gap, until relieved by General Ewell. The brigade was attacked whilst there by an overwhelming force of the enemy, but stubbornly held its ground until relieved by Ewell's corps, when it marched with him to Culpeper. General Ewell speaks in high terms of the admirable conduct of this brigade. Continuing the march on the morning of the 24th, at Newby's cross-roads a brigade of the enemy's cavalry attempted to arrest our march. Heth's division


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