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[205] present position, the centre of each brigade resting on the turnpike. The division will be massed under cover of the hills now occupied by Hoke's troops, so as to be sheltered at the outset from the enemy's fire in front. During the movement the head of the column will be kept at a distance of about five hundred yards from Hoke's second line of battle. As soon as practicable the intervals between the brigades of the reserve division will be maintained at from two to three hundred yards.

The reserve artillery, under General Colquitt, will follow along the turnpike, about three hundred yards in rear of the last brigade. He will use it to the best advantage. Simultaneously with these movements Major-General Whiting will move with his division from Petersburg, along the Petersburg and Richmond Turnpike, and attack the enemy, flank and rear.

The movements above indicated must be made with all possible vigor and celerity.

The Generals commanding divisions, and Colonels Baker and Shingler, commanding cavalry, will report at these headquarters at 6 h. P. M. to-day. In the mean time they will give all necessary instructions for providing their respective commands with sixty rounds of ammunition issued to each man, and at least twenty rounds for each in reserve. They will cause their commands to be supplied with two days cooked rations.


Nothing could be more explicit and nothing clearer. Each division commander knew exactly what he was expected to do. He knew also, and so did each brigade commander, what movements would be executed on other portions of the field. To acquaint his subordinates with the general outlines of his plans when about to put them into execution, and thus insure unity of action, was one of the methods habitually used by General Beauregard during the war. The wisdom of this course was never more clearly exhibited than upon this occasion.

General Beauregard's narrative of the battle of Drury's Bluff, and the divers incidents connected with it, will be found in the following passages, taken from his report to the War Department:

Ransom moved at 4.45 A. M., being somewhat delayed by a dense fog, which lasted several hours after dawn and occasioned some embarrassment. His division consisted of the following brigades, in the order mentioned, commencing from the left: Gracie's, Kemper's (commanded by Colonel Terry), Burton's (under Colonel Fry), and Colonel Lewis's (Hoke's old brigade).

He was soon engaged, carrying, at 6 A. M., with some loss, the enemy's line of breastworks in his front, his troops moving splendidly forward to the assault, and capturing five stands of colors and some five hundred prisoners. The brigades most heavily engaged were Gracie's and Kemper's, opposed to the enemy's right, the former turning his flank. He then halted to form, reported his loss heavy and troops scattered by the fog, his ammunition short,

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R. F. Hoke (3)
G. T. Beauregard (3)
K. Kemper (2)
Gracie (2)
W. H. C. Whiting (1)
Terry (1)
Shingler (1)
R. Ransom (1)
Lewis (1)
Fry (1)
Comdg (1)
A. H. Colquitt (1)
Burton (1)
T. M. Baker (1)
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