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[354] and numerous division, time to cross the Potomac and participate in the battle. It was three o'clock. Burnside was already driving Toombs' weak brigades before him, and was rapidly gaining ground. He had ascended the hills on the right which separate the Antietam from the Sharpsburg plateau; the enemy's artillery was about to fall into his hands; he had almost reached the town, south of which Longstreet was endeavoring to re-form his lines, when A. P. Hill fell suddenly upon his left flank. The aspect of the combat was at once changed; the contest along those hills became more and more violent, and the Federals, surprised at this new resistance, came to a halt, to fall back immediately after.

As yet no diversion had been made on the right, which in turn remained inactive. Seeing the condition of the three corps that had just sustained the brunt of the battle on that side, McClellan, following Sumner's advice, only employed Franklin's troops in reconstructing and consolidating his line. It was, therefore, on the left, upon Burnside, that the main effort of the enemy was now directed. The four small divisions of this corps, which scarcely numbered more than three thousand men each, were thus disposed: Wilcox on the right and Rodman on the left of the road, Cox in second line to support both, and Sturgis near the bridge.

Hill's attack fell upon Rodman, who was obliged to face to the left, thus leaving an empty space between his right and Wilcox's left, into which Archer's brigade, followed by Branch and Pender, penetrated immediately. This attack in front was supported by Toombs, who joined Hill in pressing the left flank of the Federals. Exposed to a concentric fire, Rodman's division suffered terribly, saw its chief mortally wounded, and lost ground. The disorder soon spread. Fortunately for it, Scammon's brigade of Cox's division, making a change of front to the left, arrived in time to support it, and to check Hill's success. But the Confederates returned to the charge, determined to stop the progress of the Ninth corps at all hazards. The latter found itself, as Sedgwick had a short time before, compromised by the very progress it had made. Compelled to fight on its left and front at the same time, it found its right no less exposed. A single brigade, Warren's of Porter's corps, had been sent to support it in that direction; the rest of the army had not moved. Cox, who commanded

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A. P. Hill (4)
Rodman (3)
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Burnside (2)
Warren (1)
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Sturgis (1)
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