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[21] to the rear, and were informed by them that everything was over with us. I was riding by the side of Colonel Kemper at the head of the column, and we had the satisfaction of being assured that if we went on the field on horseback, we certainly would be killed, as the enemy shot all the mounted officers. Some of the men said that their regiments had been entirely cut to pieces, and there was no use for them to remain any longer.

It was to the encouraging remarks of this stream of recreants that my command was exposed as it moved on, but not a man fell out of ranks. Only one man who had been engaged offered to return and he belonged to the 4th Alabama Regiment, which he said had been nearly destroyed, but he declared that he would “go back and give them another trial.” He fell into the ranks of Kemper's regiment and I believe remained with it to the close of the battle. Captain Gardner had been sent ahead for instructions and had met with Colonel John S. Preston, a volunteer aide to General Beauregard; and on our getting near to the battlefield, Colonel Preston rode to meet us and informed me that the General had gone to the front on the right, to conduct an attack on the enemy, but that General Johnston was on that part of the field near which we were and would give me instructions. He pointed out the direction in which General Johnston was, and I moved on, soon meeting the General himself, who rode towards us when he discovered our approach, and expressed his gratification at our arrival.

I asked him at once to show me my position, to which he replied that he was too much engaged to do that in person, but would give me directions as to what I was to do. He then directed me to move to our own extreme left and attack the enemy on his right, stating that by directing my march along the rear of our line, by the sound of the firing in front, there could be no mistake; and he cautioned me to take especial care to clear our whole line before advancing to the front, and

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John S. Preston (2)
James L. Kemper (2)
Joseph E. Johnston (2)
Fleming Gardner (1)
GeneraMl Beauregard (1)
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