previous next
[273] Semmes was held in reserve. The Washington Artillery was posted on Marye's hill, just in the rear of Cobb, and behind Kershaw and Barksdale were two batteries of the Richmond Howitzers and the Rockbridge Battery of rifled guns.

Soon after the fog had cleared away Federal officers rode boldly out and examined the ground between the two armies. They rode within a hundred yards of our line, but were not fired on. No one seemed disposed to kill such bold, brave fellows.

Not long after they had retired, a strong line moved towards the right of Barksdale's Brigade, seemingly bent on turning our flank, but were surprised and driven back by the fire of the batteries just behind us.

Line after line of infantry stood along the valley, and we could distinctly see immense columns of troops on the opposite side of the river waiting to cross on the bridges. We were in a woods, our rifle pits concealed by underbrush, which also obscured our artillery above us.

About 11 o'clock the enemy moved forward, and halted about 100 vards from the cut where Cobb was concealed. The line was dressed, and every man stood in his place. It was a formidable column, out for a desperate encounter.

Everything in readiness, they advanced about thirty yards when the artillery back of us opened, throwing grape and shell into their ranks. The Georgians, resting their guns on the bluff, fired a volley which almost destroyed the alignment. The enemy fell back, leaving their dead and wounded. The color bearers threw down their flags, and numbers of the men dropped their guns and fell outstretched on the ground.

Quickly another line advanced and met the same disaster. A third and fourth line rushed forward, and were driven back with equal slaughter. Charge followed charge until night relieved the scene. The enemy acted with great gallantry, and rushed into our works to meet defeat and death, but others took their places and suffered likewise. There was no occasion during the war when the Federal troops displayed such determination and behaved with greater credit.

During that dreadful engagement General Cobb was seriously wounded, and died soon afterwards. General Cobb was a distinguished man in peace, and could have won even greater fame in war had he lived.

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.
Rockbridge (Virginia, 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.
Thomas R. R. Cobb (4)
Barksdale (2)
Paul J. Semmes (1)
Kershaw (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: