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[97]

To General Jackson's note informing General Lee that he was wounded, the latter replied:

I cannot express my regret at the sad occurrence. Could I have directed events, I should have chosen for the good of my country to have been disabled in your stead. I congratulate you on the victory which was due to your skill and energy.

It was on receiving this letter that Jackson exclaimed: ‘Better that ten Jacksons should fall than General Lee!’ He had unbounded confidence in General Lee's eminent ability.

The Stonewall Brigade was composed of men from the Valley. The 4th Virginia Regiment was from the southern part of the Valley-Greenbrier and adjoining counties-and was commanded by Colonel Preston. The 2nd Virginia Regiment was from the lower valley-Jefferson, Berkeley and Frederick counties. Colonel Allen was the commander. The 5th Virginia Regiment was from Augusta county, excepting Captain Stover Funk's company, from Winchester, Colonel Harper commanding. The 27th Virginia Regiment, of Rockbridge and adjoining counties, was commanded by Colonel Echols. The 33d Virginia Regiment, most of the members of which were from Shenandoah county, was commanded by Col. A. C. Cummings. These were the original commanders of the regiments composing the Stonewall Brigade, but in the storms of battle they were soon numbered among the dead and their successors met a similar fate.

General Jackson was the incarnation of a Christian soldier. His sublime faith in God dominated all else. Duty was his guiding star, and he personally attended to all the possible details of a great battle. Generally he was in front, leading his legions, with his hand pointing to heaven, his lips moving as if supplicating guidance from the Supreme Ruler.

In my mind's eye, I see him astride ‘old sorrel,’ and now and then giving the terse command, his forefinger pointing towards heaven and his lips quivering:

Push forward, men! Push forward!

He was devoted to his men and always gave them generous praise for heroism. He was a strict disciplinarian, and would not tolerate disobedience of orders by any one.

General Jackson's campaign in the Shenandoah Valley in the spring of 1862 was a series of brilliant victories, which has no equal in war. Within a period of five weeks he defeated General Fremont, at the battle of McDowell; General Banks, near Winchester;


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