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[385] The circumstances as related by General Hill were these:

On several occasions General Jackson had given orders in person to General Hill's brigade commanders without his knowledge. This General Hill resented as a breach of courtesy to him and protested against it.

One day while on the march he left the head of his command for a short while, and on his return found the leading brigades had gone into camp. On inquiry he found that General Jackson had given the order to his troops in his absence. Stung by what he considered an affront, and seeing General Jackson and his staff near by, he rode up to him and excitedly said: General Jackson, you have assumed command of my division, here is my sword; I have no use for it. To this General Jackson replied: ‘Keep your sword General Hill, but consider yourself under arrest.’

For several days General Hill remained with his troops, but not in command, and at his own request was allowed to take command in the battle which was fought in a few days, and afterwards remained in command. But the breach thus made was not readily healed, and General Lee interposed to reconcile their differences. He had several interviews with them separately and sought to pour oil on the troubled waters. At length he induced them to meet at his quarters and used every argument to effect a compromise, but each insisted that he was the injured party and refused to yield. To this General Lee replied: ‘Then let him who thinks he has been injured most prove himself most magnanimous by forgiving most.’

This grand appeal was irresistible, and effected a reconciliation which made it possible for the corps and division commanders to serve together in harmony, and with feelings of mutual respect for each other.

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Stonewall Jackson (5)
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