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 of the division of Sturgis. Crook, received by a vigorous discharge of musketry, was promptly repulsed. Rodman's brigade, which was to have crossed at a ford below the bridge, met with no better success. Sturgis then sent his two regiments to renew the charge; but notwithstanding his perseverance, he could not even reach the bridge. Two hours were thus wasted in successive efforts on the part of detachments too feeble for the work— efforts that were at once sanguinary and fruitless. Thus, while the contest was increasing on the right, the left still continued motionless. In vain did McClellan send messenger after messenger to Burnside with the order, more and more urgent, to try a general attack. It was noon, and this general with his four divisions had as yet only brought three brigades into action, and had sent but two or three regiments at a time to attack the bridge, around which all the enemy's means of defence were concentrated. Much valuable time was thus lost in weak and impotent attempts. Meanwhile, Sumner, with the Second corps, had resumed the combat on the right, which had been temporarily suspended. Sedgwick was in advance, French followed him closely. Richardson, who the day before occupied the first line, found himself in the rear, and crossed the Antietam at half-past 9. Forming his division in column by deployed brigades, Sedgwick entered the large clearing on the east side, passed first beyond Green's soldiers, who had not abandoned the contest, then Williams, beyond the line of and crossing the clearing diagonally, swept before him Hood's two brigades. He thus reached the Hagerstown turnpike, crossed it, still pursuing a westerly course, and finally entered the woods, before which all the efforts of Hooker and Mansfield had previously proved unsuccessful. In this vigorous attack Sumner naturally advanced at the head of his soldiers. Alone in front of his line, his head bare, and quickening his pace to the noise of the balls, which shattered the branches of the trees around him, the ‘old bull of the woods’ displayed as much energy as at Fair Oaks. Nothing could arrest Sedgwick—neither the thickness of the forest, nor the rocks which formed so many natural fortifications under the trees; and he quickly reached the opposite border of the
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