him of the fact, and suggesting the propriety of falling back to the interior lines, as we had done all we could do. At the same time I sent another officer, whose name I will not mention, to Fort Gregg, with orders to evacuate it.”
This letter is certainly the most remarkable of any that has appeared in print thus far, connected with battery Gregg, and none can appear in the future that will exceed it in the freedom of its assertions.
I believe General Harris
ranked General Walker
I know he (Walker
) was junior to both Generals Lane
, to say nothing of myself, and we three were all the time present — myself after about sun up, and within less than one hundred and fifty yards of Gregg
, until it fell.
And yet this junior officer, according to his own account, exercised supreme command, disposing of the troops to meet the enemy's advance, and ordering them to withdraw when he was informed that our right was reinforced.
When I ordered the withdrawal of the troops, I had not been informed of the arrival of reinforcements to fill the gap on our right.
I knew the resistance made by our small numbers had been intended to delay the advance of the enemy until they should arrive.
I can't say that General Walker
was not present near battery Gregg the morning of April 2nd.
I certainly have no recollection of seeing him, but I did hear subsequently that he had sent an order to battery Whitworth, which I will refer to before closing this too lengthy account of this small, though brilliant affair.
makes quotations from four letters written by officers of Lane
's brigade, and addressed to their former commander, two of these officers were of the Thirty-third and two of the Thirty-seventh North Carolina regiment.
These officers were in Gregg
during the fight.
The General disposed of their statements very briefly, indulged freely in humor, wit and ridicule — a method practiced by himself, possibly, as a lawyer when seeking to weaken testimony, facts and logic being against him. One of the officers, Lieutenant Snow
, Thirty-third North Carolina regiment, says, “After ammunition was exhausted they used rocks,” and “for over half an hour.”
story shows what weight
this testimony is entitled to, &c., &c.,” says the General
; the italics are his. He may not be aware of the fact, but this was not the first or only time that rocks
were used in battle during the war. If he will read the official report of the battle of Second Bull Run
, he will see that General A. P. Hill
mentions the fact that one of his brigades having exhausted ammunition, used rocks
. If I remember correctly, there had been either huts or tents in Gregg
, and they had chimneys made of brick or stone, or of both of these kinds of material.
This officer may have overestimated the time rocks
were used — not one