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[234] or gave out, and in front of the Louisiana brigade and Jones' brigade there was a broad plateau; an old field without timber or obstruction of any kind extending for six or eight hundred yards. Then the ground descended into a rather deep hollow or ravine covered with oak timber, which belt of timber extended much further beyond, and was filled with the enemy's troops. The skirmishers from Hays' and Jones' brigade were posted in this timbered ravine, one thousand yards in front of the breastworks.

All day on the 9th we were left in quiet, and on the 10th nothing excited suspicion until after the hour of noon, when the enemy's skirmishers in the edge of the pine forest in front of Ramseur became particularly active and spiteful, and muffled sounds began to issue from the unseen recesses of the wood, which were suspicious, and it was believed that the enemy was massing there for an attack. This was reduced to a certainty later in the afternoon, when in an instant a column of the enemy rushed out from among the pines and dashed swiftly across the intervening space between them and Ramseur. Ramseur's men were ready, and poured a deadly volley into them, but the blue lines did not falter, and before our men could reload they were on the works. Our men used the bayonets, but were driven back, and the blue coats, with three cheers and a tiger given in regular hip! hip! hurrah! style, moved on in pursuit. The two regiments on the left of the Stonewall Brigade had poured an oblique fire on foe as they advanced, and after the works were carried were drawn back and formed at right angles to the breastworks, from which position they delivered a murderous fire into the flank of the enemy after they crossed the line.

The triumph of the victors was of short duration, for soon Ramseur's retiring line was reinforced, and in turn the enemy was driven back pell mell at a double-quick, and as they recrossed our works and the open space to seek the friendly gloom of the pine forest they had a few moments before left in such gallant array, they were shot down until the ground was covered with their dead and wounded. Ramseur's lines were restored, and there were no further demonstrations on the 10th or 11th. The night of the 11th was damp and misty, with a dense fog resting on the ground.

During the night it was reported to General Lee that the enemy was again withdrawing from his front, and preparing to make another flank movement. To meet this the artillery was at once withdrawn


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Stephen D. Ramseur (5)
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