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[230] slope of Sitlington's hill, as the part of the mountain held by Johnson was called, to seize that hill and drive the Confederates from it. A skirt of woods concealed his initial movement, but as soon as his skirmishers appeared in the bushy field, Jackson, who was still on the lookout, ordered up four regiments of Johnson's brigade which had been halted in concealment along the turnpike. He deployed the Fifty-second Virginia as skirmishers and advanced them to engage the enemy; posting in their rear, in the center of his position on the summit of the hill, the Twelfth Georgia, and on its right the Forty-fourth Virginia. The Fifty-eighth Virginia was marched to the left to support the Fifty-second. The Confederate line then formed an arc of a circle, with its convexity toward the enemy so that its right was nearly perpendicular to its left. As the Federal skirmishers, in line of battle, advancing up the mountain side, came in sight they became engaged with Johnson's skirmishers. Two Federal regiments attacked the Confederate left, advancing boldly and steadily and pushing back the skirmish line until they became engaged with the line of battle in a fierce struggle on the brow of the hill. In the meantime, Milroy had sent two Ohio and a West Virginia regiment to attack and attempt to turn the Confederate right. The two Ohio regiments vigorously attacked Johnson's right, while the West Virginia one pushed up the turnpike to accomplish the purpose for which it was sent. Anticipating such a movement, Jackson had placed the Thirty-first Virginia on the turnpike below the point where the Confederates had climbed to Sitlington's hill. The attack on Johnson's right led Jackson to withdraw the Thirty-first from guarding the turnpike and send that and the Twenty-fifth Virginia to Johnson, who placed them in support of the Forty-fourth on his right, thus extending his line not only across the field on Sitlington's hill, but down the slope of that hill northward toward the turnpike. Jackson then committed the guarding of the turnpike to the Twenty-first Virginia. Milroy next ordered two cannon and a force along the turnpike, but their attack amounted to nothing. The main contention was with Johnson's right by the combined attack of all the Federal forces that had climbed up the mountain side. Again and again were the brave attacks of the Ohio and West Virginia troops

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Edward Johnson (7)
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