previous next
[130]

While Jackson's troops were being brought up, the noise of battle waned, until an ominous silence seemed to possess the field as the sun drew near the horizon. Then the storm arose again and soon swelled to a magnitude never before heard on this continent.

It was about seven o'clock when at last D. H. Hill, Ewell, Lawton, and a part of Winder were all hotly engaged in the swampy tangle in front of the Federal right, and, though in great confusion, were making headway through it, and several Confederate batteries were returning the Federal fire. Opposite their left, Whiting's two brigades had just arrived, being directed by Lee as they approached from Cold Harbor, and two of Winder's brigades were also close at hand. A. P. Hill's brigades, though much diminished, were still holding their lines, and Longstreet was all in position. It was, practically, anybody's fight. A fresh division to Porter would have easily held his lines until night. It might even have enabled him to make an effective counterstroke, though the natural obstacles behind which his lines were located, offered but one or two possible opportunities. Two fresh brigades, French's and Meagher's, were en route to him, but were yet too far off to lend any aid.

But Lee, at last, was putting forth his whole strength. He issued orders for an advance of every command, regardless of the troops upon its right or left. A general advance was made, not simultaneous in its beginnings, but pressed to success by Whiting's two brigades supported by Longstreet on our extreme right, by Lawton's and Winder's brigades in the centre, and by D. H. Hill with Garland's and parts of Ripley's and Rodes's brigades upon our left.

Had it been made two hours earlier, the fruits of the victory would have been important. As it was, they were so trifling as scarcely to be worth mention. Porter fell back in fairly good order under cover of his superior artillery, and our artillery could not be gotten forward across the swamps. Blessed night, for which the defeated pray, had let down her mantle while the firing was still severe, and before we could even feel fully assured of our victory. Under its friendly cover, and the protection of the French and Meagher brigades, by 4 A. M. the whole Federal

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Ripley (Mississippi, United States) (1)
Jackson (Mississippi, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Winder (3)
Whiting (2)
Fitz-John Porter (2)
Longstreet (2)
W. H. F. Lee (2)
E. P. Lawton (2)
D. H. Hill (2)
Rodes (1)
Meagher (1)
A. P. Hill (1)
Garland (1)
Ewell (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: