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April 12th (search for this): chapter 30
t no one whom I ever knew would have been less willing to enjoy unmerited honors in life or after death—for no one disdained shame and falsehood more than he. Truth and manliness were his distinguishing characteristics, and to them in whomsoever found he was ever ready to do reverence. Near the town of Hillsboroa, in the county of Orange, which has been the residence of as many, if not more, distinguished citizens than any county in the State, George Burgwyn Anderson was born on the 12th day of April, in the year 1831, and was the oldest son of the late William E. Anderson, Esq., and his wife, Eliza Burgwyn. In his early years he exhibited the intellectual and moral traits which, in their full development, adorned his manhood, and attracted the admiration, and commanded the respect of all who knew him. A better illustration of the adage, that the child is often father to the man, than his case furnished, is seldom to be found. Gentle and modest in disposition, respectful and obed
ently afterwards expressed great confidence in his judgment and skill. Colonel Anderson remained in command at Manassas until the place was evacuated in March, 1862, and while there, was, on several occasions earnestly recommended for promotion by his commanding officers, Generals D. H. Hill and Joseph E. Johnston, but this expected and well-merited distinction was not conferred on him, but was withheld until it was forced from the government by his splendid conduct at Seven Pines on the 31st of May, the first serious engagement in which he participated and in which he commanded a brigade. The battle of Seven Pines was a bloody baptism for Colonel Anderson's regiment; indeed, it was almost unparalleled in its terrible destructiveness to that command, for of the twenty-seven officers fit for duty all except one were either killed or wounded, and of the five hundred and twenty men in the ranks, eighty-six were killed and three hundred and seventy-six were wounded, leaving only fifty
tenderness of a brave soul reveals itself and captivates the beholder—the benevolent, frank, gladsome smile which marks a lovable nature. And surely if any man ever possessed such a nature—a soft, gentle, refined, winning, and almost womanly spirit—it was he. Yet not Richard of England, nor Arnold Winkelried could look more unquailing in the face of death. Completing its organization and equipment at Garysburg, his regiment proceeded to Manassas, but not in time for the battle of the 21st of July. Colonel Anderson was soon afterwards made commandant of the post there and superintended the construction of the defensive works in the vicinity. The best possible evidence of the extraordinary esteem in which, even at this early period of his career, he was held by his superior officers, is to be found in an incident related to me by Major John W. Dunham, who was then his adjutant-general. Major Dunham vouches for the truth of the statement and that the incident happened within his ow<
ant in the Army of Northern Virginia. To say this is to exhaust the vocabulary of praise in behalf of any military organization that has yet appeared on earth. Then came the Seven Days struggle around Richmond, in each of which the brigade took an active part and the young Brigadier won new laurels as a most gallant and efficient officer. In the last of these engagements, the terrible work at Malvern Hill, General Anderson, while leading a desperate charge, received a wound in the hand In August the army commenced the first invasion of the enemy's territory after having fought several battles concluding with the second battle of Manassas, where Pope was ruined and a splendid victory won; but General Anderson's brigade was not engaged in any serious fight previous to the actual invasion of Maryland. At the battle of South Mountain, however, where General D. H. Hill's division was left by General Lee to oppose the passage of General McClellan's army until Jackson could capture Harpe
ied, with difficulty and danger, to an improvised hospital in the rear, and the wound examined and pronounced severe, but not serious. No one dreamed that one of the truest and bravest men that ever lived had the wound of death upon him. He was taken into Virginia, and when the army fell back he was brought—with his brother and aide-de-camp, Captain Walker Anderson who was also wounded at Sharpsburg, and was afterwards killed at the Wilderness—to Raleigh, arriving in the latter part of September. His wound was a most painful one, and he suffered great agony for two weeks after reaching here. Finally amputation was decided upon, but it was too late. He sunk under the operation, and on the morning of October 16th, 1862, in the thirty-second year of his age, his brave soul bade farewell to earth. His death was regarded as a public calamity, not only by his companions-in-arms, whom it deeply afflicted, but by the people of the State, who were proud of him as a North Carolinian. A
September 17th (search for this): chapter 30
the heroic defenders of the pass, though but a handful in comparison with the immense and thoroughly equipped force assailing them, and though subjected to very heavy losses from first to last, yielded not an inch of their ground until nightfall, and then, their purpose being accomplished, retired unmolested to take their place in the ranks of death at Sharpsburg. The historic battle of Sharpsburg or Antietam—this great battle as General Lee called it in his report—occurred on the 17th day of September, three days after the fight at South Mountain, and D. H. Hill's division, with Anderson's brigade on its right, wearied and worn out by continuous marching and fighting, took position in the centre of the line on the left of the Boonsboro road. Longstreet was on the right, and Jackson, who had captured Harper's Ferry with its little army and all its supplies, occupied the extreme left. McClellan and Lee at last stood face to face. General McClellan said, before the Committee of
November 8th (search for this): chapter 30
also engaged in defying the laws (as his successors still are), and an expedition under the command of Albert Sidney Johnston was sent to that Territory to vindicate the supremacy of the Federal authority and the rights of civilization and decency. The Second Dragoons was a part of the force detailed for this service, and Lieutenant Anderson served on the expedition as adjutant of the regiment. Remaining there until the fall of 1859, he was detached and sent to Kentucky, where, on the 8th of November of that year, he was united in marriage to Miss Mildred Ewing, of Louisville, and was soon thereafter stationed in that city as a recruiting officer. There he remained—in the enjoyment of what were, doubtless, the happiest days of his life—until the demon of civil war stamped his foot for the first time in our land in April, 1861, when, knowing full well what that meant and how dire would be the need of North Carolina for all her true sons, and especially those with military knowledge
w would have been less willing to enjoy unmerited honors in life or after death—for no one disdained shame and falsehood more than he. Truth and manliness were his distinguishing characteristics, and to them in whomsoever found he was ever ready to do reverence. Near the town of Hillsboroa, in the county of Orange, which has been the residence of as many, if not more, distinguished citizens than any county in the State, George Burgwyn Anderson was born on the 12th day of April, in the year 1831, and was the oldest son of the late William E. Anderson, Esq., and his wife, Eliza Burgwyn. In his early years he exhibited the intellectual and moral traits which, in their full development, adorned his manhood, and attracted the admiration, and commanded the respect of all who knew him. A better illustration of the adage, that the child is often father to the man, than his case furnished, is seldom to be found. Gentle and modest in disposition, respectful and obedient to authority, he was
olutely fearless in the maintenance of what he believed to be true and right. These qualities, in combination with intellectual gifts of a superior order, gave him a precedence among his schoolmates, which he afterwards sustained at college and at West Point, so long as he cared to do so. While at the State University he divided the first honors of his class with three others, and received the unqualified commendation of all his professors, including the distinguished president. In the year 1848, when seventeen years old, he received—what he ardently aspired to—a cadetship at the Military Academy, and going to West Point he was very soon recognized as a youth of uncommon promise, and—as one of his classmates, who afterwards became a distinguished general in the United States army testified—was not only one of the brightest intellects, but the very superior mind of his class. At the first examination, six months after he entered, his number was two in a class of ninety-four members,
ified—was not only one of the brightest intellects, but the very superior mind of his class. At the first examination, six months after he entered, his number was two in a class of ninety-four members, but his taste for literature, and his desire to be a generally well informed man of the world, tempered his ambition to excel in a knowledge of the textbooks; and as he devoted much of his time to general reading, and a liberal share of it to pleasant society, his number, when he graduated in 1852, was nine; but this was in a class of forty-one graduates, and was therefore a high standing, and entitled him to select the arm of the service which he preferred. He selected the Dragoons, and rendered his first service at the cavalry school at Carlisle, Pennsylvania, where he remained for six months, at the expiration of which time he was detailed to assist Lieutenant Parke, of the engineers, in surveying a route for a railroad in California. When this duty was completed, he was ordered t
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