previous next

[363] the meat—well, it would soon be running out of the haversack, for mind you, this was in the months of July and August.

This campaign, too, more than any other, perhaps, brought out more fully the wonderful genius and capabilities of our commander, who was to thwart every movement of his opponent, and prove his superiority by the skilful and rapid manipulation of his troops, meeting and beating him in every battle, thereby causing General Grant to be more prudent in the management of his forces and to settle down to a siege. But let us resume the march.

After it became known that Grant had crossed the larger part of his army to the south side of the James the Crenshaw Battery received orders to move, as did the whole of Pegram's battalion, and we were soon on the road again. After crossing the James near Drewry's Bluff on pontoons, we continued the march until we came to within two or three miles of Petersburg, where we occupied a part of the works, which extended from the Howlett House far to the south of Petersburg. And now as the theatre of war was for the most part transferred to the southside of the James, let us look at that city, as I then saw it. It is some eighteen miles south of Richmond, as the crow would fly, and situated on the south side of the Appomatriver, which empties in the James some twelve miles below. It had a population then of some 15,000 souls, and was noted for its wealth as well as for the intelligence of its people. It is intersected by three railroads—the Norfolk and Petersburg, the first one to be seized by the enemy, and which it is said was surveyed by General Mahone, who certainly gained quite a reputation for the skilful and rapid handling of his troops in and around this smitten city; the Petersburg and Weldon and the Petersburg and Southside, which had its outlet by way of Burkeville to Lynchburg, with connections here at Burkeville with the Richmond and Danville for the South. With these roads in Grant's possession our hope of success must vanish. And for the task of defending the extreme right, General Lee with that foresight which he ever seemed to possess, selected A. P. Hill, the commander of the Third Corps, who had already gained a reputation second to none. How well he carried out the plans, and how he met the approbation of Lee in this important duty, history will tell you. Suffice it to say that he gave his life for the cause. It was here that we fought the enemy, although not seeing him at the time. It was in this way: The position assigned us on the line had been carefully examined, and our instructions were to elevate the guns to a certain height from which our shots would have the desired effect,

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)
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.
James H. Grant (3)
W. H. F. Lee (2)
John Pegram (1)
William Mahone (1)
A. P. Hill (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
July (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: