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[553] us at long range, and, under cover of an immediate wood, moved his second line by a flank across the railroad, and it soon reappeared approaching upon Hagood's left and rear, the left of this force being upon the prolongation of our line of battle. * * *

As soon as his new line was taken General Hagood ordered an advance. The brigade rushed forward with enthusiasm, and drove back the flanking line —they not again appearing in that direction. * * * The enemy again massed heavily in Hagood's front and essayed an advance; but his men, sheltered in the railroad-cut, easily repelled this attack, with little loss to themselves. Between 4 and 5 o'clock P. M. the engagement ceased, except the firing of sharpshooters and artillery on both sides; and before dark the enemy withdrew from the field, unpursued, and carrying off most of his wounded. Hagood's force, as before stated, was 1500 men, and his loss during the day was 22 killed, 132 wounded, and 13 missing. The force of the enemy was five brigades of infantry, under General Brooks, with the usual proportion of artillery, and a regiment of cavalry. His loss was heavy, * * * estimated at 1000. Prisoners put it larger. It was probably not as great. * * * The brunt of this action fell upon Hagood's brigade; and in the progress of the narrative it will be seen that it saved Petersburg. By the time the enemy were again ready to advance sufficient reinforcements had arrived to hold the place. The citizens appreciated the fact, and were enthusiastic in their gratitude. A flag was voted the brigade by the ladies. The merchants would take no pay from the men for their little purchases, and from at least one pulpit thanks were offered for the timely arrival of the 1500 brave South Carolinians. The brigade did acquit itself well. It was its first fight upon Virginia soil, and a creditable letter of introduction to the battle-scarred veterans of Lee, among whom it was shortly merged. * * *


Weldon, N. C., May 8th, 1864.
Genl. Braxton Bragg, Comdg. C. S. Armies, Richmond, Va.:
Despatch of 4 o'clock just received. I should have started to-day for Petersburg; but, burning of Stony Creek Bridge and movements of enemy's cavalry at Jarratt's requiring new orders and arrangements, have delayed my departure until morning, when I shall run through and assume command, as desired. Two of Hoke's brigades have passed here to-day, and been forwarded; he himself will arrive to-night, and follow immediately. The water here has improved my health.


Despatch received at 10.30 A. M. Orders had been given before destruction of bridge at Stony Creek to have necessary timbers prepared for all bridges between here and Petersburg. After destroying Stony Bridge enemy's cavalry engaged guards at Nottoway and Jarratt's, but were repulsed. All troops are being hurried forward as rapidly as possible. I hope to leave to-day for Petersburg, where prompt and energetic measures will be adopted as soon as practicable.

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