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[338] just before dawn, couriers came in from the Stonewall Brigade and others, stating that the enemy were stirring. We rose, and mounted our horses, and before dawn General Johnson and his attendants were out on the lines. General Johnson, Major Kyd Douglas, Capt. V. Dabney, Major E. L. Moore and myself. The men were roused in the trenches, and before day the whole division was on the qui vive. The fog was so dense we could not see in any direction, but soon we could hear the commands of officers to the men, and the buzz and hum of moving troops. The pickets had been driven in, with occasional shots here and there, and there was instant expectation of a coming assault.

The first thing we saw was a mass of men—indistinctly visible through the fog—moving in front of our position. Our left was the Stonewall Brigade, under General J. A. Walker. Then came the Louisianians of Hays and Stafford's brigades under Colonel Zebulon York; then John M. Jones' old brigade under Colonel V. A. Witcher, and then the right under Brigadier General George H. Steuart. The massing men were in front of York and Witcher. General Johnson ordered me to tell Steuart to press on to his left close to Witcher, and then to hurry up the artillery. I ran on foot rapidly, called for General Steuart, and not finding him instantly, I myself gave the officers and troops directions to close to the left. It was then that I saw our artillery coming in position, and the fire broke out with a rush of the enemy upon our ranks. The artillery I met was the battery of Captain William P. Carter, brother of Colonel Thomas H. Carter, the battalion commander. Two guns of this battery fired before the enemy ran over them.

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