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[115] lined with our infantry; one brigade on the heights northward, and Corse's on the south, no doubt came to the conclusion that a formidable army was in their front. Hancock may have thought that he had to deal with the right flank of Lee's army, anyhow it brought him to a halt and it appears that at night when he took possession of the hills, he at once proceeded to entrench his line, which to-day may be seen and traced for miles on those hills, there are two lines of trenches.

The rear one, or main line, was very strong and must have required several days of incessant labor for its erection. During a recent trip to Milford by the writer he, together with Captain J. M. Hudgin, of the 30th Virginia infantry, visited the fields of action and drove over to the hills west of the Mattapony river, along the formidable works erected by Hancock's men after the engagement on May 21, 1864. The position occupied by Corse's brigade was pointed out, and after looking from these hills and the hill occupied by Norton's men, the circumstances of the occasion seemed to be to us explained; certainly if we could have held these formidable heights, Hancock would not have had an easy task to drive us from them.

Lee arrived at the junction with the head of Ewell's Corps at 9:30 A. M., on the 22nd, having marched all night, a distance of over thirty miles, from Spotsylvania Courthouse. The following is his report to the War Department in Richmond:

“I arrived here with the head of Ewell's Corps at 9:30 A. M. Longstreet is close behind. I expect A. P. Hill to-night. I have as yet seen nothing of the enemy east of the Mattapony.”


Thus it will be seen that on the morning of the 21st, Lee was at Spotsylvania Courthouse, thirty miles off, while Hancock was at Milford, only sixteen miles from the junction. Lee lost no time in reaching the junction to select his ground, and how well he shaped his line when his opponents came up is a matter of history.

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