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Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 4. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), Causes of the defeat of Gen. Lee's Army at the battle of Gettysburg-opinions of leading Confederate soldiers. (search)
my own, in regard to that battle. In conclusion, I must say that I do not regard the campaign in Pennsylvania as having resulted in such disastrous consequences to our arms as you seem to think attended them. It is true that we failed to win a great battle on the soil of Pennsylvania, but all the enemy's plans for the campaign in Virginia for that year were thwarted, and our aimy retired across the Potomac self-relying and defiant. When it confronted Meade for several days, near Hagerstown, Maryland, on the retreat, he dared not attack it. In the following autumn General Lee was able to detach one corps from the army, two divisions of which were sent to the assistance of Bragg's army in the southwest, and contributed materially to the victory of Chickamauga. InI the ensuing spring the Army of Northern Virginia was able to meet and cope with an army under Grant, originally of nearly if not quite thrice its numbers, which was also constantly receiving heavy reinforcements
Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 4. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), Causes of the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg. (search)
t by them, and, in fact, under the conditions existing when the actual conflict was joined, success was almost impossible. Even after the second day's battle, in my humble judgment, it was possible to have withdrawn from the offensive and taken the defensive, and forced Meade to assault us, and to have given him a crushing defeat. I may be mistaken, and I do not by any means set up as a military critic in general, but, as we did offer battle on the 4tb, and again for several days near Hagerstown, on the retreat (while waiting to construct a bridge over the Potomac), and as Meade did at last feel bound to attack us, but just a day too late to do it, I think a similar course might have been successfully pursued after the action of the second. Whether it was discussed I do not know, but I do know that Longstreet was very averse to the assault by Pickett's division on the third. He only expressed his opinion about it, so far as I know, after the division was launched, but the circum
Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 4. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), Report of General H. L. Benning. (search)
ninety belonged to the Fifteenth Georgia. A report of the killed, wounded, and missing for the two days has been sent up. The total was five hundred and nine. The loss on the first day was about four hundred. The next day (the 4th) the division was formed in line of battle facing down the Emmettsburg road, and ordered to erect breastworks, which it did. My brigade was on the left, its left resting on that road. About 12 o'clock at night the division commenced moving back towards Hagerstown by Fairfield, my brigade bringing up the rear. Nothing more of much interest happened to the brigade until the division had crossed the Shenandoah. It crossed that river at Berry's Ford by wading, and found the water deep and swift. At dawn the next day, the division took the road from Front Royal to Linden by Manassas Gap. It found the Gap occupied by the enemy's cavalry and artillery, with pickets some distance in their front, and some regiments of cavalry between these and the
Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 4. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), Report of General Kershaw. (search)
f the enemy; 22d, returned to camp on western side of the river; 23d, obtained 503 new arms from Winchester; 24th, marched to Summit Point; 25th, to Martinsburg; 26th, crossed Potomac river, camped near Williamsport; 27th, marched by the way of Hagerstown, Middleburg and Greencastle and camped five miles from Chambersburg; 28th, marched through Chambersburg and camped one mile beyond; remained in camp until the 30th, when we marched to Fayetteville; 1st July, Anderson's and Johnson's divisions ave to the right so as to connect with Hood's left, retaining my then front. This I did, and remained in that position until the night of the 4th, when, about midnight, I moved with the army via Franklin to Montery. On the 6th, marched through Hagerstown via Waterloo, and camped near Funkstown. On the 10th I was directed to proceed with my own and Senmmes' brigades and a section of Frazier's battery to the bridge across the Antietam, near Macauley's, and defend that position, the enemy having
Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 4. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), Leading Confederates on the battle of Gettysburg. (search)
of Chambersburg to Gettysburg. This was all the cavalry that went into Pennsylvania at the time our army invaded that state, Robertson's and Jones' being left behind, as already stated. Even Hooker, who estimated our force that passed through Hagerstown at 97,000 infantry and cavalry and 280 guns, and was, by no means, disposed to underrate any part of our army, does not put the cavalry with Stuart beyond 5,000, (see Con. Rep., 173,) and Mr. J. Everett Pearson, of Westminster, Maryland, whose , as that brigade had never served under him. Rodes, in his report, says it numbered about 1,600 men when it joined him the 12th of June, and Meade sent a dispatch to Halleck on the 28th of June, giving a statement furnished him by persons from Hagerstown, who saw with very large magnifying glasses, and placed our army at very heavy figures, which says: Rebel cavalry came just a week ago last Monday. General Jenkins having 1,200 mounted infantry, said to be picked men from Jackson's men, and th