previous next

[191] to their flank, to a fire by men in houses. One especially severe was that from Mr. Carter's, immediately in my front. I was near General Strahl, who stood in the ditch, and handed up guns to those posted to fire them. I had passed to him my short Enfield (noted in the regiment), about the sixth time. The man who had been firing, cocked it and was taking deliberate aim, when he was shot, and tumbled down dead into the ditch upon those killed before him. When the men so exposed were shot down, their places were supplied by volunteers until these were exhausted, and it was necessary for General Strahl to call upon others. He turned to me, and though I was several feet back from the ditch, I rose up immediately, and walking over the wounded and dead, took position with one foot upon the pile of bodies of my dead fellows, and the other in the embankment, and fired guns which the General himself handed up to me until he, too, was shot down. One other man had had position on my right, and assisted in the firing. The battle lasted until not an efficient man was left between us and the Columbia Pike, about fifty yards to our right, and hardly enough behind us to hand up the guns. We could not hold out much longer, for indeed but few of us were then left alive. It seemed as if we had no choice but to surrender or try to get away, and when I asked the General for counsel, he simply answered, ‘Keep firing.’ But just as the man to my right was shot, and fell against me with terrible groans, General Strahl was shot. He three up his hands, falling on his face, and I thought him dead, but in asking the dying man, who still lay against my shoulder as he sank forever, how he was wounded, the General, who had not been killed, thinking my question was to him, raised up, saying that he was shot in the neck, and called for Colonel Stafford to turn over his command. He crawled over the dead, the ditch being three deep, about twenty feet to where Colonel Stafford was. His staff officers started to carry him to the rear, but he received another shot, and directly the third, which killed him instantly. Colonel Stafford was dead in the pile, as the morning light disclosed, with his feet wedged in at the bottom, with other dead across and under him after he fell, leaving his body half standing, as if ready to give command to the dead!

By that time but a handful of us were left on that part of the line, and as I was sure that our condition was not known, I ran to the rear to report to General John C. Brown, commanding the division. I met Major Hampton, of his staff, who told me that General Brown was wounded, and that General Strahl was in command. This assured me that those in command did not know the real situation,

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Enfield (Massachusetts, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Strahl (4)
Stafford (3)
John C. Brown (2)
Wade Hampton (1)
Henry C. Carter (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: