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[231] us I can hardly conjecture. I have understood that they believed we were in full retreat to the southward; it is certain they never guessed our real design, for their right flank was assailed by us when they so little expected an attack that many of their troops were cooking their supper.

* * * * * * * * *

Arrived at the point of our destination and having driven in the enemy's pickets, General Jackson made his dispositions for the attack.

* * * * * * * * *

It consisted simply in deploying D. H. Hill's and Colston's divisions and all but two brigades of A. P. Hill's division on each side of the old turnpike leading to Chancellorsville, with one brigade of (I believe) D. H. Hill's division deployed across the Plank road, and the remaining brigades of A. P. Hill's division marching by the Plank road down the old turnpike. * * * General A. P. Hill rode along down the road, occasionally dashing off to the right or left to see what some particular brigade was doing, and, of course, his staff accompanied him. This state of things continued from 6 o'clock in the evening, when the attack commenced, until 9 1/2 o'clock. In the meantime our troops had driven the enemy about three or four miles towards Chancellorsville. They had run like sheep on our approach — throwing away their arms, knapsacks and everything of which they could divest themselves; they had been completely surprised. They had thrown up entrenchments to meet an attack from the front, but as we assailed their right flank, their entrenchments had been useless to them and they abandoned them. They had, it is true, barricaded the roads, and some of their entrenchments were in the right direction to meet our attack; but neither barricades nor entrenchments enabled them to even delay our progress. Our troops marched in line of battle through the woods filled with thick undergrowth and across ravines at a rapid pace for several hours. The thick woods, the combat and the coming on of darkness had deranged our lines, and brigades, and even divisions, had gotten mixed together. In this state of things we nevertheless pressed forward until we reached the brow of the declivity opposite that on which the tavern, etc., known as Chancellorsville, is situated. Here we were met by the fire of a heavy battery, posted so as to enfilade the road. The troops halted, and General Jackson and General Hill rode forward

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