If you read my post on Imboden’s Report prior to about 2:30 PM on Jan. 1, you will notice that it looks a little different now. Prompted by a question from Craig, I took a look at another source for the report. The original post was taken from the Supplement to the Official Records, a copy of which was provided me by Jonathan Soffe. Correspondence with Jim Burgess at Manassas NBP revealed that Imboden’s report is also published in the second volume of The Rebellion Record, which I have here in my office. That publication showed that there are some differences between it and the version of the report published in the Charleston Daily Courier which served as the basis for the report in the Supplement. Those differences included punctuation and paragraphs, as well as variation in text and the inclusion of a large portion of text missing from the Supplement. So I have replaced my earlier post with the report as it appears in the Rebellion Record. Read it again as I think it is significantly different.
The report prompted me to send a note to Jim with regards to the single gun which Imboden identified as belonging to the 4th Alabama. Since I’d never seen reference to the Alabamians having their own cannon before, I turned to Jim for clarification. His response confirmed my suspicions:
Imboden’s report is also published in The Rebellion Record (Vol. 2, p.43). We have always interpreted Imboden’sreference to the gun with the 4th Alabama as actually being Lt. Clarke Leftwich’s piece from the Lynchburg Artillery (Latham’s Battery). This was one of the two guns assigned to Evans’ brigade, Lt. George Davidson commanding the other 6-pounder of the section near the entrance to Robinson’s Lane. Imboden’s reference to the horses running off with the limber for the gun in question appears remarkably similar to what Leftwich experienced. In a letter published in the Richmond Enquirer, Aug. 6, 1861, Leftwich takes issue with Imboden’s published report and states that it was the horses for his caisson that took flight from the yard of the Stone House. He further states, “As to the Alabama Regiment crossing to the north side of the Warrenton road…with our gun, that, too, is incorrect. Our two six-pounders were brought from the Stone Bridge directly to the scene of action… unattended by the Alabama regiment or a single individual except those commanding and manning the guns…. No gun or piece of artillery took position between the Staunton battery and the enemy, or with the Alabama regiment at any portion of the fight, except our two six-pounders. Nor was any piece north of the Warrenton road except ours, during the engagement.”
Happy New Year’s Eve!
Next up – get a copy of Leftwich’s letter!
Imboden photo from www.generalsandbrevets.com