Donaldsonville Cannoneers, still survive among us, sustained by their old record and their young blood; others, like the Louisiana Guard artillery, live only in heroic story.
The field artillery, army of Northern Virginia, which Louisiana
gave to the war, comprised the Washington artillery, four companies, Col. J. B. Walton
commanding; Victor Maurin
's fighting Donaldsonville Cannoneers; the Louisiana Guard artillery, Capt. Louis E. D'Aquin
; and the ‘Madison Tips’—most natural of nicknames, though hailing from an upper parish.
‘Tips’ clung to the battery by reason of its fun-making Irishmen, loving danger quite as much as cracking a jest.
It would be hard to fix the palm of cheery valor among those loud-laughing, dinmaking, battle-loving, caisson-riding lads.
One thing is sure, the push of the Louisiana
infantry passed into her artillerists' nimbler fingers.
Under her Tent of Glory one can find both the musket and the field-gun.
On June 26th, a bugle-note had rung cheerily in Camp Walton
of the Washington artillery.
The Seven Days had opened.
was appointed by General Longstreet
as chief of artillery of the right wing of the army.
's promotion was joyfully hailed by his enthusiastic artillerists.
For highest rank in the artillery the battery would not willingly have parted with its popular commander.
It was also announced that the battalion itself would be Longstreet
's ‘reserve artillery.’
Reserve artillery is, in passing, an exceedingly elastic phrase.
Under a fighter like Longstreet
, it might mean many chances on the fighting line.
Under a Fabius, it might easily suffer from an overdose of inaction.
The Washington artillery was directed to move out on the Mechanicsville turnpike
Once on the pike, the battalion began to learn what the phrase reserve artillery might mean.
They saw no fighting on the 26th; grumbled at the ‘reserve’ on the 27th; frowned on the 28th, 29th and 30th —were lured into hope on July 1st, and dropped into gloom by Longstreet
himself late on the afternoon of Malvern