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[360] who, at the ever memorable meeting at Appomattox, to our immortal Lee, and to the glorious eight thousand veterans—surviving heroes of the Army of Northern Virginia—on the 9th of April, 1865, conceded liberal and magnanimous terms of surrender, do we—standing by the graves of our Confederate Dead, and mindful of the memories which the observance of this occasion is designed to perpetuate —respectfully tender to General Grant assurances of our sincere and profound sympathy in this the season of his direful extremity.

Let us now, my comrades, refresh our recollection of a battle fought for the salvation of the commercial metropolis of this State— an engagement won almost exclusively by Georgians—a victory which, in the results achieved, may be justly esteemed as decisive, and pregnant with honor to Confederate arms.

The Federals having abandoned any designs which they may have entertained against the city of Macon, and it appearing not improbable that Augusta, with its valuable powder-mill, work-shops, foundry, arsenal and government stores would attract the notice of General Sherman in his onward march toward the coast, on the morning of the 21st of November, 1864, General Hardee ordered the First Brigade, Georgia militia, to proceed with the utmost dispatch along the line of the Central railroad, and, moving by rail or otherwise, as transportation could be secured, to rendezvous at that place at the earliest practicable moment. Major-General Gustavus W. Smith was directed to follow with the Second, Third and Fourth Brigades of Georgia militia, the two regiments of the Georgia State Line, the Augusta and Athens battalions of local troops, and Anderson's Confederate light battery. In the execution of this order, that officer, on the morning of the 22d, put his command in motion with instructions to halt at Griswoldville, and there await further advices.

While detained a few hours in Macon in consummating necessary arrangements for the conveyance of supplies and ammunition, General Smith was informed that large bodies of the enemy still lingered in the vicinity of the town and threatened his proposed line of march. His troops were immediately recalled. The order, however, did not reach them until they were engaged with what was supposed to be an inconsiderable Federal force. In the language of his official report, ‘a collision occurred, we being the attacking party, and though the officers and men behaved with great gallantry, they failed to carry the works of the enemy, but held a position within one hundred and fifty yards of their line until after dark, when they were ’

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