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[26] short and sharp, but easily repulsed. There are no reports of Reno from which to learn the particulars of the part his troops took in the affair, but it is certain that we engaged them, for I, myself, after the assault was over, questioned prisoners taken from his corps by our regiments.

It must not be supposed that there was rest and safety for our troops during the interval between the attacks I have been describing. There was no quiet for us that day from dawn till evening. The Federal sharpshooters held possession of the woods in our front, and, whether or no assaults were being made, kept up a deadly fire of single shots whenever any one of us was exposed. Every lieutenant who had to change his position did so at the risk of his life. What then was our horror, during one of these intervals of attack, to see General Jackson himself walking quietly down the railroad cut examining our position, and calmly looking into the woods that concealed the enemy. Strange to say he was not molested. He was spared that day to fall at Chancellorsville, at the moment of his greatest success, by a similar unnecessary personal exposure. I venture to say that on neither occasion had he the right thus recklessly to expose a life of so much consequence to the cause for which we were fighting.

And now took place the most brilliant action of the enemy during that day, the assault of the New England brigade under Grover.

General Gordon says:1

‘Many days after the battle, while the earth was covered with shreds of clothing, with pieces of leather, and with all the fragments of a crash of arms, while the dead strewed the field and the earth was red with blood, men and women followed the course of those heroic men of New England and knew not nor cared to know that it was on the same ground that Milroy had defied the whole Confederate army together.’

Let me give you, my comrades, General Gordon's account of this attack, and then read you General Jackson's short report of it from our side. These accounts do not exactly agree as to what was actually accomplished by our gallant assailants. When did the stories of those on opposite sides in battle correspond? But both accounts do agree in the heroism of the attack and the desperate resistance with which it was met. They disagree, too, as to the troops on our side who met the charge. General Gordon represents the assault as delivered in front of Ewell and Jackson's divisions, whereas General

1 Army of Virginia, Gordon, p. 261.

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