came South through the gloomy Wilderness
which, one year before, had so nearly stranded the army of the Potomac.
stretched no hand to stop Grant
's crossing the Rapidan
; he was bent on striking once for the sake of those dreary woods of fortunate Confederate memory.
's corps on the morning of the 5th called a halt to Warren
's Federal corps advancing on the Orange turnpike
came up to help in the assaults upon the Confederate
held fast all day, one corps against two, and blocked the road.
Both of the Louisiana
brigades were hotly engaged, and they bore their share of the losses.
In a counter-attack by his and the Stonewall brigade, toward dusk, the heroic Stafford
fell mortally wounded.
Afterward, in sorrowfully recounting his loss of 3 generals killed, 4 wounded and 2 captured, Ewell
remarked: ‘Gen. Edward Johnson
once said of General Stafford
that he was the bravest man he ever saw. Such a compliment from one himself brave, brave almost to a fault, and habitually sparing of praise, needs no remark.’
Next day the fighting continued along Ewell
's line, the enemy aggressive, trying to find his flank.
In the evening Gordon
went forward, Hays
moving partly out of the works to connect, and took a mile of the Federal
While marching to Spottsylvania Court House on the 8th, orders were received transferring Hays
' brigade to Johnson
's division, and consolidating both Louisiana
brigades under General Hays
But the gallant Hays
was not long to have this honor.
On the next day, in line at Spottsylvania
, he was severely wounded and compelled to leave the field.
Unfitted for further battle service, he was transferred to the Trans-Mississippi
to bring new men into the army.
On May 12th Hancock
, superb fighter steadied by danger, broke through a part of our line, enveloping the salient held by Edward Johnson
, and capturing Johnson
and 2,000 of the division, including many of the