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[473] was being driven back. 'Twas here that Kentucky's brave and eloquent Roger Hanson was mortally wounded and soon after died.

Walthall's brigade (commanded by Patton Anderson) was ordered to double-quick a distance of one and one-half miles, or thereabouts, to his support. Passing through an open field in rear of our line, and fording the river, we reached the indicated position just as night set in, and whilst Major Robeson, of Texas (afterwards General Robeson, of cavalry), a young but promising officer, who at the breaking out of the war left West Point to unite his fate with his people, Chief of Artillery on the staff of the General commanding, was holding in check with his well-massed artillery the exultant enemy, who till then was hotly pursuing the retreating forces of Breckinridge. During the night and incident to the confusion on such occasions, General Anderson reported through me to his division commander, General Withers, that he could find no line to support—that there were no Confederate forces save his own picket line in his front.

This was immediately dispatched to Army Headquarters, and soon thereafter a courier rode up to General Anderson's position with orders for his Assistant Adjutant General to report at army headquarters without delay.

Following the courier for several miles, we finally drew up our tired steeds in front of one of the finest mansions in Murfreesboro, and on making myself known I was invited by an aid-de-camp of General Bragg into a large double-roomed folding parlor, elegantly furnished, where sat the commander in chief, surrounded by his corps and division commanders.

Besmeared with mud, and tired from exposure and loss of sleep, I felt decidedly out of place in this galaxy of Generals, but on entering the room I was somewhat relieved when General Withers rising introduced me as the officer who had penciled the dispatch about which the council of war had assembled, and the Commanding General invited me to be seated. In few words, responsive to the pertinent and laconic questions propounded to me, I saw that General Bragg was satisfied with the accuracy of my report, and turning to General Breckinridge he so stated. My recollection is that General Breckinridge then also recognized his error, and accordingly conceded it. I do not conceive that General Breckinridge was censurable for this mistake, which so much endangered the safety of our army. His troops, under his gallant lead, had just made a glorious

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