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Moving in position for the morrow's battle.

It was soon after dark, on the 18th October, 1864, that we moved out of camp, up the hill, from the little valley to the left of Fisher's Hill, where our camp had been located, over the Valley Pike, and across the river and along the foothills of the mountains or side of it. At times the mountain appeared to be right over the river. Slowly, silently, and stealthily we moved, sometimes in a bridle-path, sometimes in no path at all. Through the woods the hillside was so steep or slanting I got off my horse and walked for safety. Onward, mostly in single file, we moved, through the darkness of night and woods, until nearly daybreak the head of the column was halted and men closed up. We were then near the Bowman's lower ford, where we crossed the Shenandoah the second time.

As soon as we had our men up and formed, whilst it was yet in the gray dawn before daylight, and a mist hanging over, so we could not see fifty feet, we were ordered forward, and charged across the Shenandoah River, preceded (so far as I could see and understand at the time, and I was right at the head of the column) by only a few cavalry as an advance outpost guard. I see General John B. Gordon, in his ‘Reminiscenses,’ says his own division preceded Ramseur's Division. Godwin's Brigade was leading Ramseur's; it may be another division was ahead, but if so, I did not see them, and I am sure I did not hear any firing until we struck the enemy, except a few scattering shots of cavalry picket firing, as we took it to be.

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Fishers Hill (Virginia, United States) (1)
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S. D. Ramseur (2)
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October 18th, 1864 AD (1)
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