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[351] Newton's division, supported by Burnham's brigade, was to attack Marye's Hill, while Howe's division assaulted Lee's Hill beyond Hazel Run.

This force numbered about 14,000 men, with an abundant artillery. Across Hazel Creek were seven guns of Cutt's and Cabell's battalions, and the two remaining regiments of Barksdale's brigade and one La. of Hays's brigade.

About 11 A. M., both Newton and Howe renewed the assault. Newton advanced rapidly through the fire of the few Confederate guns, but recoiled soon after the infantry opened, although Barksdale's line was so thin that it scarcely averaged a man to five feet of parapet. Some of the Federal regiments, however, suffered severely, and a number of killed and wounded were left near the Confederate line.

This, by a strange piece of good nature on the part of one of our best officers, proved our undoing. When Newton's line was beaten back, the firing on both sides nearly ceased, and some Federal officer sent forward a flag of truce. No Federal report mentions this incident. The flag was probably sent by only a brigade commander, for the fighting, by Howe's division, across Hazel Run, was kept up without cessation. Col. Griffin of the 18th Miss. received the flag. The officer bearing it asked to be allowed to remove his dead and wounded in Griffin's front. Without referring to his brigade commander, Griffin granted the request, and, still more thoughtlessly, allowed his own men to show themselves while the wounded were being delivered. The enemy, to their great surprise, discovered what a small force was in their front.

They lost little time in taking advantage of the information. The action was reopened, and now a charge was made with a rush, and the enemy swarmed over our works. The Mississippians had no chance to escape, but fought with butts of guns and bayonets, and were mostly captured, with the loss of about 100 killed and wounded. The casualties in Newton's division and Burnham's brigade, in the whole battle, were about 1200, of which probably 900 fell in this affair. All of the guns on the hill were captured, Brown's section last of all, firing until surrounded.

Meanwhile, Howe's division had a full mile to traverse before

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Hazel Run (West Virginia, United States) (2)
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Newton (5)
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1200 AD (1)
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