fire upon you during the fight,” and added with the most perfect simplicity, “Of course, what I did was in the way of business and not in malice.”
My horse was shot in the neck, and I suppose I owe to this man the injury he received.
However, I soon retired, and notwithstanding the exciting and important incidents of the day, I slept soundly and awoke with the morn, refreshed and buoyant, resolved to perform my whole duty in the grand drama, in which I had undertaken to perform a part.
I should not, perhaps, omit an incident of the day, as it illustrates an important duty of the officer.
On the morning of the fight (I was not provided with a commissary) a man, whom I did not know, reported to me as my acting commissary, stating that supplies for my command had been turned over to him, and he wished to know if he should destroy them, as he supposed we would soon engage the enemy.
Amazed! I replied, “Destroy them!
No. Take good care of them and issue them as the law and your duty requires.
I am sorry thus to learn that you already assume that we are to be whipped.”
Meeting him the next morning, I said, “Well, sir, what have you done with your supplies?”
He replied, “obeyed your orders, and am now issuing them to your men.”
I then said, “let this incident be a lesson to you, never to destroy anything committed to your care, without it would materially
injure our enemies or materially
I might here close this article, contented with the very handsome notice taken of my command, in the official reports of the Generals
But Dr. Dabney
's Life of Jackson
, and the official Reports of the day, recently published by the Federal
government, and until then unseen by me, impose upon me the duty of asserting for my command, even at this late day, its just claim upon the love and admiration of its country.
It must not be forgot that my command had been organized only three days, and was wholly unused to arms, and was now on its third day called upon to perform the duties of the veteran soldier; that it passed along the rear of Bee
's and Jackson
's brigades, and it may be Gautrell
's regiment, to form on the left — a position of peculiar danger, as the great effort of the enemy was to turn our left; that we took, about 2 to 2 1/2 P. M., our position, and in musket range of the Ricketts
and Griffin batteries; that we had scarcely opened our fire when a heavy column of the enemy appeared, from the direction of the Sudley
road, moving on a line about equi-distant between my left and the Henry house
, obviously to flank me, which was happily anticipated by the opportune arrival of the Sixth North Carolina: that