#84 (Part 1) – Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard

26 01 2008

 Reports of Gen. G. T. Beauregard, C. S. Army, and Resulting Correspondence (Part 1)

O.R.– SERIES I–VOLUME 2 [S# 2] — CHAPTER IX, pp 484 – 504


Fairfax Court-House, October 14, 1861

SIR: I have the honor to transmit by my aide, Lieut. S. W. Ferguson, the report of the battle of Manassas, with the accompanying papers and drawings(*), as well as the flags and colors captured from the enemy on that occasion. Occupations of the gravest character have prevented their earlier transmission. I send as a guard of said colors two of the soldiers who participated in their capture.

I remain, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


General, Commanding


Adjutant General C. S. Army, Richmond, Va.

*Drawings not found



Manassas, August 26 [October 14], 1861

GENERAL: Before entering upon a narration of the general military operations in the presence of the enemy on the 21st of July, I propose, I hope not unseasonably, first to recite certain events which belong to the strategy of the campaign, and consequently form an essential part of the history of the battle.

Having become satisfied that the advance of the enemy, with a decidedly superior force, both as to numbers and war equipage, to attack or turn my position in this quarter, was immediately impending, I dispatched on the 13th of July one of my staff, Col. James Chesnut, of South Carolina, to submit for the consideration of the President a plan of operations substantially as follows:

I proposed that General Johnston should unite as soon as possible the bulk of the Army of the Shenandoah with that of the Potomac, then under my command, leaving only sufficient forces to garrison his strong works at Winchester, and to guard the fine defensive passes of the Blue Ridge, and thus hold General Patterson in check. At the same time Brigadier-General Holmes was to march hither with all of his command not essential for the defense of the position of Aquia Creek. These junctions having been effected at Manassas, an immediate impetuous attack of our combined armies upon General McDowell was to follow as soon as he approached my advanced positions at and around Fairfax Court-House, with the inevitable result, as I submitted, of his complete defeat and the destruction or capture of his army. This accomplished, the Army of the Shenandoah, under General Johnston, increased with a part of my forces, and rejoined as he returned by the detachments left to hold the mountain passes, was to march back rapidly into the valley, fall upon and crush Patterson with a superior force wheresoever he might be found. This I confidently estimated could be achieved within fifteen days after General Johnston should march from Winchester for Manassas. Meanwhile I was to occupy the enemy’s works on this side of the Potomac if, as I anticipated, he had been so routed as to enable me to enter them with him; or if not, to retire again for a time within the lines of Bull Run with my main force. Patterson having been virtually destroyed, then General Johnston would re-enforce General Garnett sufficiently to make him superior to his opponent, General McClellan, and able to defeat that officer. This done, General Garnett was to form an immediate junction with General Johnston, who was forthwith to cross the Potomac into Maryland with his whole force, arouse the people as he advanced to the recovery of their political rights and the defense of their homes and families from an offensive invader, and then march to the investment of Washington in the rear, whilst I resumed the offensive in front. This plan of operations, you are aware, was not accepted at the time, from considerations which appeared so weighty as to more than counterbalance its proposed advantages.

Informed of these views, and of the decision of the War Department, I then made my preparations for the stoutest practicable defense of the line of Bull Run, the enemy having now developed his purposes by the advance on and occupation of Fairfax Court-House, from which my advanced brigade had been withdrawn.

The War Department having been informed by me by telegraph on the 17th July of the movement of General McDowell, General Johnston was immediately ordered to form a junction of his army corps with mine, should the movement in his judgment be deemed advisable. General Holmes was also directed to push forward with two regiments, a battery, and one company of cavalry.

In view of these propositions, approaching re-enforcements modifying my plan of operations so far as to determine on attacking the enemy at Centreville as soon as I should hear of the near approach of the two re-enforcing columns, I sent one of my aides, Colonel Chisolm, of South Carolina, to meet and communicate my plans to General Johnston, and my wish that one portion of his forces should march by the way of Aldie, and take the enemy on his right flank and in reverse at Centreville. Difficulties, however, of an insuperable character, in connection with means of transportation and the marching condition of his troops, made this impracticable, and it was determined our forces should be united within the lines of Bull Run, and thence advance to the attack of the enemy.

General Johnston arrived here about noon on the 20th July, and being my senior in rank he necessarily assumed command of all the forces of the Confederate States then concentrating at this point. Made acquainted with my plan of operations and dispositions to meet the enemy, he gave them his entire approval, and generously directed their execution under my command.

In consequence of the untoward detention, however, of some five thousand of General Johnston’s army corps, resulting from the inadequate and imperfect means of transportation for so many troops at the disposition of the Manassas Gap Railroad, it became necessary, on the morning of the 21st, before daylight, to modify the plan accepted to suit the contingency of an immediate attack on our lines by the main force of the enemy, then plainly at hand.

The enemy’s forces, reported by their best-informed journals to be fifty-five thousand strong, I had learned from reliable sources on the night of the 20th were being concentrated in and around Centreville and along the Warrenton turnpike road to Bull Run, near which our respective pickets were in immediate proximity. This fact, with the conviction that after his signal discomfiture on the 18th of July before Blackburn’s Fords–the center of my lines–he would not renew the attack in that quarter, induced me at once to look for an attempt on my left flank, resting on the stone bridge, which was but weakly guarded by men, as well as but slightly provided with artificial defensive appliances and artillery.

In view of these palpable military conditions, by 4.30 a.m. on the 21st of July I had prepared and dispatched orders directing the whole of the Confederate forces within the lines of Bull Run, including the brigades and regiments of General Johnston, which had arrived at that time, to be held in readiness to march at a moment’s notice. At that hour the following was the disposition of our forces: Ewell’s brigade, constituted as on the 18th of July, remained in position at Union Mills Ford, its left extending along Bull Run in the direction of McLean’s Ford, and supported by Holmes’ brigade, Second Tennessee and First Arkansas Regiments, a short distance to the rear–that is, at and near Camp Wigfall. D. R. Jones’ brigade, from Ewell’s left, in front of McLean’s Ford and along the stream to Longstreet’s position. It was unchanged in organization, and was supported by Early’s brigade, also unchanged, placed behind a thicket of young pines a short distance in the rear of McLean’s Ford. Longstreet’s brigade held its former ground at Blackburn’s Ford, from Jones’ left to Bonham’s right, at Mitchell’s Ford, and was supported by Jackson’s brigade, consisting of Cols. James F. Preston’s Fourth, Harper’s Fifth, Allen’s Second, the Twenty-seventh, Lieutenant-Colonel Echols, and the Thirty-third, Cummings’ Virginia Regiments, two thousand six hundred and eleven strong, which were posted behind the skirting of pines to the rear of Blackburn’s and Mitchell’s Fords, and in rear of this support was also Barksdale’s Thirteenth Regiment Mississippi Volunteers, which had lately arrived from Lynchburg. Along the edge of a pine thicket, in rear of and equidistant from McLean’s and Blackburn’s Fords, ready to support either position, I had also placed all of Bee’s and Bartow’s brigades that had arrived, namely: Two companies of the Eleventh Mississippi, Lieutenant-Colonel Liddell; the Second Mississippi, Colonel Falkner, and Fourth Alabama, with Seventh and Eighth Georgia Regiments, Colonel Gartrell and Lieutenant-Colonel Gardner–in all two thousand seven hundred and thirty-two bayonets. Bonham’s brigade, as before, held Mitchell’s Ford, its right near Longstreet’s left, its left extending in the direction of Cocke’s right. It was organized as at the end of the 18th of July, with Jackson’s brigade, as before said, as a support.

Cocke’s brigade, increased by seven companies of the Eighth, Hunton’s, three companies of the Forty-ninth, Smith’s, Virginia Regiments, two companies of cavalry, and a battery, under Rogers, of four 6-pounders, occupied the line in front and rear of Bull Run, extending from the direction of Bonham’s left, and guarding Island, Ball’s, and Lewis’ Fords, to the right of Evans’ demi-brigade, near the stone bridge, also under General Cooke’s command. The latter held the stone bridge, and its left covered a farm ford about one mile above the bridge.

Stuart’s Cavalry, some three hundred men of the Army of the Shenandoah, guarded the level ground extending in rear from Bonham’s left to Cocke’s right.

Two companies of Radford’s cavalry were held in reserve a short distance in rear of Mitchell’s Ford, his left extending in the direction of Stuart’s right.

Colonel Pendleton’s reserve battery of eight pieces was temporarily placed in rear of Bonham’s extreme left.

Major Walton’s reserve battery of five guns was in position on McLean’s farm in a piece of woods in rear of Bee’s right.

Hampton’s Legion, of six companies of infantry, 600 strong, having arrived that morning by the cars from Richmond, was subsequently, as soon as it arrived, ordered forward to a position in the immediate vicinity of the Lewis house as a support for any troops engaged in that quarter.

The effective force of all arms of the Army of the Potomac on that eventful morning, including the garrison at Camp Pickens, did not exceed 21,833 and 29 guns. The Army of the Shenandoah, ready for action on the field, may be set at 6,000 men and 20 guns. (That is, when the battle began. Smith’s brigade and Fisher’s North Carolina came up later, and made total of Army of the Shenandoah engaged, of all arms, 8,334. Hill’s Virginia Regiment, 550, also arrived, but was posted as reserve to right flank.) The brigade of General Holmes mustered about 1,265 bayonets, 6 guns, and a company of cavalry about 90 strong.

Informed at 5.30 a.m. by Colonel Evans that the enemy had deployed some twelve hundred men (these were what Colonel Evans saw of General Schenck’s brigade of General Tyler’s division and two other heavy brigades—in all over nine thousand men and thirteen pieces of artillery, Carlisle’s and Ayres’ batteries; that is, nine hundred men and two 6-pounders, confronted by nine thousand men and thirteen pieces of artillery, mostly rifled) with several pieces of artillery in his immediate front, I at once ordered him, as also General Cooke, if attacked, to maintain their position to the last extremity.

In my opinion the most effective method of relieving that flank was by a rapid, determined attack with my right wing and center on the enemy’s flank and rear at Centreville, with due precautions against the advance of his reserves from the direction of Washington. By such a movement I confidently expected to achieve a complete victory for my country by 12 m.

These new dispositions were submitted to General Johnston, who fully approved them, and the orders for their immediate execution were at once issued.

Brigadier-General Ewell was directed to begin the movement, to be followed and supported successively by Generals D. R. Jones, Longstreet, and Bonham, respectively, supported by their several appointed reserves. The cavalry, under Stuart and Radford, were to be held in hand, subject to future orders and ready for employment, as might be required by the exigencies of the battle.

About 8.30 a.m. General Johnston and myself transferred our headquarters to a central position, about half a mile in rear of Mitchell’s Ford, whence we might watch the course of events. Previously, as early as 5.30, the Federalists in front of Evans’ position (stone bridge) had opened with a large 30-pounder Parrott rifled gun, and thirty minutes later with a moderate, apparently tentative, fire from a battery of rifled pieces, directed first in front of Evans’, and then in the direction of Cocke’s position, but without drawing a return fire and discovery of our positions, chiefly because in that quarter we had nothing but eight 6 pounder pieces, which could not reach the distant enemy.

As the Federalists had advanced with an extended line of skirmishers in front of Evans, that officer promptly threw forward the two flank companies of the Fourth South Carolina Regiment and one company of Wheat’s Louisiana Battalion, deployed as skirmishers to cover his small front. An occasional scattering fire resulted, and thus the two armies in that quarter remained for more than an hour, while the main body of the enemy was marching his devious way through the Big Forest to take our forces in flank and rear.

By 8.30 a.m. Colonel Evans, having become satisfied of the counterfeit character of the movement on his front, and persuaded of an attempt to turn his left flank, decided to change his position to meet the enemy, and for this purpose immediately put in motion to his left and rear six companies of Sloan’s Fourth South Carolina Regiment, Wheat’s Louisiana Battalion’s five companies, and two 6-pounders of Latham’s battery, leaving four companies of Sloan’s regiment under cover as the sole immediate defense of the stone bridge, but giving information to General Cocke of his change of position and the red, sons that impelled it.

Following a road leading by the old Pittsylvania (Carter) mansion, Colonel Evans formed in line of battle some four hundred yards in rear, as he advanced, of that house, his guns to the front and in position, properly supported, to its immediate right. Finding, however, that the enemy did not appear on that road, which was a branch of one leading by Sudley Springs Ford to Brentsville and Dumfries, he turned abruptly to the left, and marching across the fields for three-quarters of a mile, about 9.30 a.m. took a position in line of battle, his left, Sloan’s companies, resting on the main Brentsville road in a shallow ravine, the Louisiana Battalion to the right, in advance some two hundred yards, a rectangular copse of wood separating them, one piece of his artillery planted on an eminence some seven hundred yards to the rear of Wheat’s battalion, and the other on a ridge near and in rear of Sloan’s position, commanding a reach of the road just in front of the line of battle. In this order he awaited the coming of the masses of the enemy, now drawing near.

In the mean time, about 7 o’clock a.m., Jackson’s brigade, with Imboden’s and five pieces of Walton’s battery, had been sent to take up a position along Bull Run, to guard the interval between Cooke’s right and Bonham’s left, with orders to support either in case of need, the character and topographical features of the ground having been shown to General Jackson by Capt. D. B. Harris, of the engineers, of this army corps. So much of Bee’s and Bartow’s brigades, now united, as had arrived, some 2,800 muskets, had also been sent forward to the support of the position of the stone bridge.

The enemy, beginning his detour from the turnpike at a point nearly half-way between stone bridge and Centreville, had pursued a tortuous, narrow trace of a rarely-used road through a dense wood the greater part of his way until near the Sudley road. A division under Colonel Hunter, of the Federal Regular Army, of two strong brigades, was in the advance, followed immediately by another division, under Colonel Heintzelman, of three brigades and seven companies of Regular Cavalry, and twenty-four pieces of artillery, eighteen of which were rifled guns. This column, as it crossed Bull Run, numbered over sixteen thousand men of all arms by their own accounts.

Burnside’s brigade–which here, as at Fairfax Court-House, led the advance–at about 9.45 a.m. debouched from a wood in sight of Evans’ position, some five hundred yards distant from Wheat’s battalion. He immediately threw forward his skirmishers in force, and they became engaged with Wheat’s command, and the 6-pounder gun under Lieutenant Leftwitch. The Federalists at once advanced–as they report officially–the Second Rhode Island Regiment Volunteers, with its vaunted battery of six 13-pounder rifled guns. Sloan’s companies were then brought into action, having been pushed forward through the woods. The enemy, soon galled and staggered by the fire and pressed by the determined valor with which Wheat handled his battalion until he was desperately wounded, hastened up three other regiments of the brigade and two Dahlgren howitzers, making in all quite three thousand five hundred bayonets and eight pieces of artillery, opposed to less than eight hundred men and two 6-pounder guns. Despite this odds, this intrepid command, of but eleven weak companies, maintained its front to the enemy for quite an hour, and until General Bee came to their aid with his command. The heroic Bee, with a soldier’s eye and recognition of the situation, had previously disposed his command with skill, Imboden’s battery having been admirably placed between the two brigades, under shelter, behind the undulations of a hill about one hundred and fifty yards north of the now famous Henry house, and very near where he subsequently fell mortally wounded, to the great misfortune of his country, but after deeds of deliberate and ever-memorable courage. Meanwhile the enemy had pushed forward a battalion of eight companies of regular infantry, and one of their best batteries of six pieces (four rifled), supported by four companies of marines, to increase the desperate odds against which Evans and his men had maintained their stand with an almost matchless tenacity. General Bee, now finding Evans sorely pressed under the crushing weight of the masses of the enemy, at the call of Colonel Evans threw forward his whole force to his aid across a small stream (Young’s Branch and Valley), and engaged the Federalists with impetuosity, Imboden’s battery at the time playing from his well-chosen position with brilliant effect with spherical case, the enemy having first opened on him from a rifle battery (probably Griffin’s) with elongated cylindrical shells, which flew a few feet over the heads of our men and exploded in the crest of the hill immediately in rear.

As Bee advanced under a severe fire he placed the Seventh and Eighth Georgia Regiments under the chivalrous Bartow, at about 11 a.m. in a wood of second-growth pines, to the right and front of and nearly perpendicular to Evans  line of battle; the Fourth Alabama to the left of them, along a fence, connecting the position of the Georgia regiments with the rectangular copse in which Sloan’s South Carolina companies were engaged? and into which he also threw the Second Mississippi. A fierce and destructive conflict now ensued. The fire was withering on both sides, while the enemy swept our short thin lines with their numerous artillery, which, according to their official reports, at this time consisted of at least ten rifled guns and four howitzers. For an hour did these stout-hearted men of the blended commands of Bee, Evans, and Barrow breast an unintermitting battle-storm, animated surely by something more than the ordinary courage of even the bravest men under fire. It must have been indeed the inspiration of the cause and consciousness of the great stake at issue which thus nerved and animated one and all to stand unawed and unshrinking in such extremity.

Two Federal brigades of Heintzelman’s division were now brought into action, led by Ricketts” superb light battery of six 10-pounder rifled guns, which, posted on an eminence to the right of the Sudley road, opened fire on Imboden’s battery–about this time increased by two rifled pieces of the Washington Artillery under Lieutenant Richardson, and already the mark of two batteries, which divided their fire with Imboden and two guns under Lieutenants Davidson and Leftwitch, of Latham’s battery, posted as before mentioned. At this time confronting the enemy we had still but Evans’ eleven companies and two guns, Bee’s and Bartow’s four regiments, the two companies Eleventh Mississippi under Lieutenant-Colonel Liddell, and the six pieces under Imboden and Richardson. The enemy had two divisions of four strong brigades, including seventeen companies of regular infantry, cavalry, and artillery, four companies of marines, and twenty pieces of artillery. (See official reports of Colonels Heintzelman, Porter, &c.) Against this odds, scarcely credible, our advance position was still for a while maintained, and the enemy’s ranks constantly broken and shattered under the scorching fire of our men; but fresh regiments of the Federalists came upon the field. Sherman’s and Keyes’ brigades of Tyler’s division, as is stated in their reports, numbering over six thousand bayonets, which had found a passage across the run about eight hundred yards above the stone bridge, threatened our right.

Heavy losses bad now been sustained on our side both in numbers and in the personal worth of the slain. The Eighth Georgia Regiment had suffered heavily, being exposed, as it took and maintained its position, to a fire from the enemy, already posted within a hundred yards of their front and right, sheltered by fences and other cover. It was at this time that Lieutenant-Colonel Gardner was severely wounded, as also several other valuable officers. The adjutant of the regiment, Lieutenant Branch, was killed, and the horse of the regretted Barrow was shot under him. The Fourth Alabama also suffered severely from the deadly fire of the thousands of muskets which they so dauntlessly confronted under the immediate leadership of Bee himself. Its brave colonel (E. J. Jones) was dangerously wounded, and many gallant officers fell, slain or hors de combat.

Now, however, with the surging mass of over fourteen thousand Federal infantry pressing on their front and under the incessant fire of at least twenty pieces of artillery, with the fresh brigades of Sherman and Keyes approaching, the latter already in musket range, our lines gave back, but under orders from General Bee. The enemy, maintaining their fire, pressed their swelling masses onward as our shattered battalions retired. The slaughter for the moment was deplorable, and has filled many a Southern home with life-long sorrow. Under this inexorable stress the retreat continued, until arrested by the energy and resolution of General Bee, supported by Barrow and Evans, just in rear of the Robinson house, and Hampton’s Legion, which had been already advanced and was in position near it. Imboden’s battery, which had been handled with marked skill, but whose men were almost exhausted, and the two pieces of Walton’s battery, under Lieutenant Richardson, being threatened by the enemy’s infantry on the left and front, were also obliged to fall back. Imboden, leaving a disabled piece on the ground, retired until he met Jackson’s brigade, while Richardson joined the main body of his battery near the Lewis house.

As our infantry retired from the extreme front the two 6-pounders of Latham’s battery before mentioned fell back with excellent judgment to suitable positions in the rear, where an effective fire was maintained upon the still advancing lines of the Federalists with damaging effect until their ammunition was nearly exhausted, when they too were withdrawn in the near presence of the enemy and rejoined their captain.

From the point, previously indicated, where General Johnston and myself had established our headquarters, we heard the continuous roll of musketry and the sustained din of the artillery, which announced the serious outburst of the battle on our left flank, and we anxiously but confidently awaited similar sounds of conflict from our front at Centreville, resulting from the prescribed attack in that quarter by our right wing.

At 10:30 a.m., however, this expectation was dissipated, from Brigadier-General Ewell informing me, to my profound disappointment, that my orders for his advance had miscarried, but that in consequence of a communication from Gen. D. R. Jones he had just thrown his brigade across the stream at Union Mills. But in my judgment it was now too late for the effective execution of the contemplated movement, which must have required quite three hours for the troops to get into position for the attack. Therefore it became immediately necessary to depend on new combinations and other dispositions suited to the now pressing exigency. The movement of the right and center, already begun by Jones and Longstreet, was at once countermanded with the sanction of General Johnston, and we arranged to meet the enemy on the field upon which he had chosen to give us battle.

Under these circumstances our reserves not already in movement were immediately ordered up to support our left flank, namely, Holmes’ two regiments and battery of artillery, under Capt. Lindsey Walker, of six guns, and Early’s brigade. Two regiments from Bonham’s brigade, with Kemper’s four 6-pounders, were also called for and, with the sanction of General Johnston, Generals Ewell, Jones (D. R.), Longstreet, and Bonham were directed to make a demonstration to their several fronts, to retain and engross the enemy’s reserves and any forces on their flank and at and around Centreville. Previously our respective chiefs of staff, Major Rhett and Colonel Jordan, had been left at my headquarters to hasten up and give directions to any troops that might arrive at Manassas.

These orders having been duly dispatched by staff officers, at 11.30 a.m. General Johnston and myself set out for the immediate field of action, which we reached in the rear of the Robinson and Widow Henry’s houses at about 12 m., and just as the commands of Bee, Bar-tow, and Evans had taken shelter in a wooded ravine behind the former, stoutly held at the time by Hampton with his Legion, which had made stand there after having previously been as far forward as the turnpike, where Lieutenant-Colonel Johnson, an officer of brilliant promise, was killed, and other severe losses were sustained.

Before our arrival upon the scene General Jackson had moved forward with his brigade of five Virginia regiments from his position in reserve, and had judiciously taken post below the brim of the plateau, nearly east of the Henry house, and to the left of the ravine and woods occupied by the mingled remnants of Bee’s, Bartow’s, and Evans’ commands, with Imboden’s battery and two of Stanard’s pieces placed so as to play upon the on-coming enemy, supported in the immediate rear by Col. J. F. Preston’s and Lieutenant-Colonel Echols’ regiments, on the right by Harper’s, and on the left by Allen’s and Cummings’ regiments.

As soon as General Johnston and myself reached the field we were occupied with the reorganization of the heroic troops, whose previous stand, with scarce a parallel, has nothing more valiant in all the pages of history, and whose losses fitly tell why at length their ranks had lost their cohesion.

It was now that General Johnston impressively and gallantly charged to the front, with the colors of the Fourth Alabama Regiment by his side, all the field officers of the regiment having been previously disabled. Shortly afterwards I placed S. R. Gist, adjutant and inspector general of South Carolina, a volunteer aide of General Bee, in command of this regiment, and who led it again to the front as became its previous behavior, and remained with it for the rest of the day.

As soon as we had thus rallied and disposed our forces, I urged General Johnston to leave the immediate conduct of the field to me, while he, repairing to Portici, the Lewis house, should urge re-enforcement–forward. At first he was unwilling, but reminded that one of us must do so, and that properly it was his place, he reluctantly, but fortunately, complied; fortunately, because from that position, by his energy and sagacity, his keen perception and anticipation of my needs, he so directed the reserves as to insure the success of the day.

As General Johnston departed for Portici, Colonel Bartow reported to me with the remains of the Seventh Georgia Volunteers, Gartrell’s, which I ordered him to post on the left of Jackson’s line in the edge of the belt of pines bordering the southeastern rim of the plateau, on which the battle was now to rage so long and so fiercely.

Col. William Smith’s battalion of the Forty-ninth Virginia Volunteers, having also come up by my orders, I placed it on the left of Gartrell’s, as my extreme left at the time. Repairing then to the right, I placed Hampton’s Legion, which have suffered greatly, on that flank somewhat to the rear of Harper’s regiment, and also the seven companies of the Eighth (Hunton’s) Virginia Regiment, which, detached from Cocke’s brigade by my orders and those of General Johnston, had opportunely reached the ground. These, with Harper’s regiment, constituted a reserve to protect our right flank from an advance of the enemy from the quarter of the stone bridge, and served as a support for the line of battle, which was formed on the right by Bee’s and Evans’ commands, in the center by four regiments of Jackson’s brigade, with Imboden’s four 6-pounders, Walton’s five guns (two rifled), two guns (one piece rifled) of Stanard’s, and two 6-pounders of Rogers’ batteries, the latter under Lieutenant Heaton, and on the left by Gartrell’s reduced ranks and Colonel Smith’s battalion, subsequently re-enforced, Falkner’s Second Mississippi Regiment, and by another regiment of the Army of the Shenandoah, just arrived upon the field–the Sixth (Fisher’s) North Carolina. Confronting the enemy at this time my forces numbered at most not more than sixty-five hundred infantry and artillerists, with but thirteen pieces of artillery and two companies (Carter’s and Hoge’s) of Stuart’s Cavalry.

The enemy’s force now bearing hotly and confidently down on our position, regiment after regiment of the best-equipped men that ever took the field according to their own official history of the day, was formed of Colonels Hunter’s and Heintzelman’s divisions, Colonels Sherman’s and Keyes’ brigades of Tyler’s division, and of the formidable batteries of Ricketts, Griffin, and Arnold (regulars), and Second Rhode Island and two Dahlgren howitzers–a force of over twenty thousand infantry, seven companies of regular cavalry, and twenty-four pieces of improved artillery. At the same time perilous heavy reserves of infantry and artillery hung in the distance around the stone bridge, Mitchell’s, Blackburn’s, and Union Mills Fords, visibly ready to fall upon us at any moment, and I was also assured of the existence of other heavy corps at and around Centreville and elsewhere within convenient supporting distances.

Fully conscious of this portentous disparity of force, as I posted the lines for the encounter I sought to infuse into the hearts of my officers and men the confidence and determined spirit of resistance to this wicked invasion of the homes of a free people which I felt. I informed them that re-enforcements would rapidly come to their support, and that we must at all hazards hold our posts until re-enforced. I reminded them that we fought for our homes, our firesides, and for the independence of our country. I urged them to the resolution of victory or death on that field. These sentiments were loudly, eagerly cheered wheresoever proclaimed, and I then felt reassured of the unconquerable spirit of that army, which would enable us to wrench victory from the host then threatening us with destruction.

Oh, my country! I would readily have sacrificed my life and those of all the brave men around me to save your honor and to maintain your independence from the degrading yoke which those ruthless invaders had come to impose and render perpetual, and the day’s issue has assured me that such emotions must also have animated all under my command.

In the mean time the enemy had seized upon the plateau on which Robinson’s and the Henry houses are situated–the position first occupied in the morning by General Bee before advancing to the support of Evans. Ricketts’ battery of six rifled guns, the pride of the Federalists, the object of their unstinted expenditure in outfit, and the equally powerful regular light battery of Griffin, were brought forward and placed in immediate action, after having, conjointly with the batteries already mentioned, played from former positions with destructive effect upon our forward battalions.

The topographical features of the plateau, now become the stage of the contending armies, must be described in outline. A glance at the map will show that it is inclosed on three sides by small water-courses, which empty into Bull Run within a few yards of each other a half a mile to the south of the stone bridge. Rising to an elevation of quite one hundred feet above the level of Bull Run at the bridge, it falls off on three sides to the level of the inclosing streams in gentle slopes, but which are furrowed by ravines of irregular direction and length, and studded with clumps and patches of young pines and oaks. The general direction of the crest of the plateau is oblique to the course of Bull Run in that quarter and to the Brentsville and turnpike roads, which intersect each other at right angles. Immediately surrounding the two houses before mentioned are small open fields of irregular outline, not exceeding one hundred and fifty acres in extent. The houses, occupied at the time, the one by the Widow Henry and the other by the free negro Robinson, are small wooden buildings, the latter densely embowered in trees and environed by a double row of fences on two sides. Around the eastern and southern brow of the plateau an almost unbroken fringe of second-growth pines gave excellent shelter for our marksmen, who availed themselves of it with the most satisfactory skill. To the west, adjoining the fields, a broad belt of oaks extends directly across the crest on both sides of the Sudley road, in which during the battle regiments of both armies met and contended for the mastery. From the open ground of this plateau the view embraces a wide expanse of woods and gently undulating open country of broad grass and grain fields in all directions, including the scene of Evans’ and Bee’s recent encounter with the enemy, some twelve hundred yards to the northward.

In reply to the play of the enemy’s batteries our own artillery had not been either idle or unskillful. The ground occupied by our guns, on a level with that held by the batteries of the enemy, was an open space of limited extent, behind a low undulation just at the eastern verge of the plateau, some live or six hundred yards from the Henry house. Here, as before said, thirteen pieces, mostly 6-pounders, were, maintained in action; the several batteries of Imboden, Stanard, Pendleton (Rockbridge Artillery), and Alburtis, of the Army of the Shenandoah, and five guns of Walton’s and Heaton’s section of Rogers’ battery of the Army of the Potomac, alternating to some extent with each other, and taking part as needed, all from the outset displaying that marvelous capacity of our people as artillerists which has made them, it would appear, at once the terror and the admiration of the enemy. As was soon apparent, the Federalists had suffered severely from our artillery and from the fire of our musketry on the right, and especially from the left flank, placed under cover, within whose galling range they had been advanced; and we are told in their official reports how regiment after regiment thrown forward to dislodge us was broken, never to recover its entire organization on that field.

In the mean time, also, two companies of Stuart’s Cavalry ((Carter’s and Hoge’s) made a dashing charge down the Brentsville and Sudley road upon the Fire Zouaves, then the enemy’s right; on the plateau, which added to their disorder wrought by our musketry on that flank. But still the press of the enemy was heavy in that quarter of the field as fresh troops were thrown forward there to outflank us, and some three guns of a battery in an attempt to obtain a position, apparently to enfilade our batteries, were thrown so close to the Thirty-third Regiment, Jackson’s brigade, that that regiment, springing forward, seized them, but with severe loss, and was subsequently driven back by an overpowering force of Federal musketry.

Now, full 2 o’clock p.m., I gave the order for the right of my line, except my reserves, to advance to recover the plateau. It was done with uncommon resolution and vigor, and at the same time Jackson’s brigade pierced the enemy’s center with the determination of veterans and the spirit of men who fight for a sacred cause, but it suffered seriously. With equal spirit the other parts of the line made the onset, and the Federal lines were broken and swept back at all points from the open ground of the plateau. Rallying soon, however, as they were strongly re-enforced by fresh regiments, the Federalists returned, and by weight of numbers pressed our lines back, recovered their ground and guns, and renewed the offensive.

By this time, between half past two and 3 o’clock p.m., our re-enforcements pushed forward, and, directed by General Johnston to the required quarter, were at hand just as I had ordered forward to a second effort for the recovery of the disputed plateau the whole line, including my reserve, which at this crisis of the battle I felt called upon to lead in person. This attack was general, and was shared in by every regiment then in the field, including the Sixth (Fisher’s) Worth Carolina Regiment, which had just come up and taken position on the immediate left of the Forty-ninth Virginia Regiment. The whole open ground was again swept clear of the enemy, and the plateau around the Henry and Robinson houses remained finally in our possession with the greater part of the Ricketts and Griffin batteries, and a flag of the First Michigan Regiment, captured by the Twenty-seventh Virginia Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Echols, of Jackson’s brigade.

This part of the day was rich with deeds of individual coolness and dauntless conduct, as well as well-directed embodied resolution and bravery, but fraught with the loss to the service of the country of lives of inestimable preciousness at this juncture. The brave Bee was mortally wounded at the head of the Fourth Alabama and some Mississippians. In the open field near the Henry house, and a few yards distant, the promising life of Bartow, while leading the Seventh Georgia Regiment, was quenched in blood. Col. F. J. Thomas, acting chief of ordnance, of General Johnston’s staff, after gallant conduct and most efficient service, was also slain. Colonel Fisher, Sixth North Carolina, likewise fell, after soldierly behavior at the head of his regiment with ranks greatly thinned.

Withers’ Eighteenth Regiment, of Cocke’s brigade, had come up in time to follow this charge, and, in conjunction with Hampton’s Legion, captured several rifled pieces, which may have fallen previously in possession of some of our troops, but if so, had been recovered by the enemy. These pieces were immediately turned and effectively served on distant masses of the enemy by the hands of some of our officers.

While the enemy had thus been driven back on our right entirely across the turnpike and beyond Young’s Branch on our left, the woods yet swarmed with them when our re-enforcements opportunely arrived in quick succession and took position in that portion of the field. Kershaw’s Second and Cash’s Eighth South Carolina Regiments, which had arrived soon after Withers, were led through the oaks just east of the Sudley-Brentsville road, brushing some of the enemy before them, and taking an advantageous position along and west of that road, opened with much skill and effect on bodies of the enemy that had been rallied under cover of a strong Federal brigade posted on a plateau in the southwest angle formed by intersection of the turnpike with the Sudley-Brentsville road. Among the troops thus engaged were the Federal regular infantry.

At the same time Kemper’s battery, passing northward by the Sudley-Brentsville road, took position on the open space, under orders of Colonel Kershaw, near where an enemy’s battery had been captured, and was opened with effective results upon the Federal right, then the mark also of Kershaw’s and Cash’s regiments. Preston’s Twenty-eighth Regiment, of Cocke’s brigade, had by that time entered the same body of oaks, and encountered some Michigan troops, capturing their brigade commander, Colonel Willcox.

Another important accession to our forces had also occurred about the same time, 3 o’clock p.m. Brig. Gen. E. K. Smith, with some seventeen hundred infantry, of Elzey’s brigade, of the Army of the Shenandoah, and Beckham’s battery came upon the field from Camp Pickens, Manassas, where they had arrived by railroad at noon. Directed in person by General Johnston to the left, then so much endangered, on reaching a position in rear of the oak woods, south of the Henry house, and immediately east of the Sudley road, General Smith was disabled by a severe wound, and his valuable services were lost at that critical juncture; but the command devolved upon a meritorious officer of experience, Colonel Elzey, who led his infantry at once somewhat farther to the left, in the direction of the Chinn house, across the road, through the oaks skirting the west side of the road, and around which he sent the battery, under Lieutenant Beckham. This officer took up a most favorable position near that house, whence, with a clear view of the Federal right and center, filling the open fields to the west of the Brentsville-Sudley road and gently sloping southward, he opened fire with his battery upon them with deadly and damaging effect.

Colonel Early, who by some mischance did not receive orders until 2 o’clock which had been sent him at noon, came on the ground immediately after Elzey, with Kemper’s Seventh Virginia, Hays’ Seventh Louisiana, and Barksdale’s Thirteenth Mississippi Regiments. This brigade, by the personal direction of General Johnston, was marched by the Holkham house across the fields to the left, entirely around the woods through which Elzey had passed, and under a severe fire, into a position in line of battle near Chinn’s house, outflanking the enemy’s right.

At this time, about 3.30 p, m., the enemy, driven back on their left and center and brushed from the woods bordering the Sudley road, south and west of the Henry house, had formed a line of battle of truly formidable proportions, of crescent outline, reaching on their left from vicinity of Pittsylvania (the old Carter mansion), by Mathews’ and in rear of Dogan’s, across the turnpike near to Chinn’s house. The woods and fields were filled with their masses of infantry a and their carefully-preserved cavalry. It was a truly magnificent, though redoubtable, spectacle as they threw forward in flue style on the broad, gentle slopes of the ridge occupied by their main lines a cloud of skirmishers, preparatory for another attack.

But as Early formed his line, and Beckham’s pieces played upon the right of the enemy, Elzey’s brigade, Gibbons’ Tenth Virginia, Lieutenant-Colonel Steuart’s First Maryland, and Vaughn’s Third Tennessee Regiments, Cash’s Eighth and Kershaw’s Second South Carolina, Withers, Eighteenth and Preston’s Twenty-eighth Virginia advanced in an irregular line, almost simultaneously, with great spirit from their several positions upon the front and flanks of the enemy in their quarter of the field. At the same time, too, Early resolutely assailed their right flank and rear. Under this combined attack the enemy was soon forced first over the narrow plateau in the southern angle made by the two roads so often mentioned into a patch of woods on its western slope, thence back over Young’s Branch and the turnpike into the fields of the Dogan farm and rearward, in extreme disorder in all available directions towards Bull Run. The rout had now become general and complete.

About the time that Elzey and Early were entering into action a column of the enemy (Keyes’ brigade, of Tyler’s division) made its way across the turnpike between Bull Run and the Robinson house, under cover of a wood and brow of the ridges, apparently to turn my right, but was easily repulsed by a few shots from Latham’s battery, now united and placed in position by Capt. D. B. Harris, of the Virginia engineers, whose services during the day became his character as an able, cool, an(. skillful officer, and from Alburtis’ battery, opportunely ordered by General Jackson to a position to the right of Latham, on a hill commanding the line of approach of the enemy, and supported by portions of regiments collected together by the staff officers of General Johnston and myself.

Early’s brigade, meanwhile, joined by the Nineteenth Virginia Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Strange, of Cockers brigade, pursued the now panic-stricken fugitive enemy. Stuart, with his cavalry and Beckham had also taken up the pursuit along the road by which the enemy had come upon the field that morning, but soon, cumbered by prisoners who thronged his way, the former was unable to attack the mass of the fast-fleeing, frantic Federalists. Withers’, R. T. Preston’s, Cash’s, and Kershaw’s regiments, Hampton’s Legion, and Kemper’s battery also pursued along the Warrenton road by the stone bridge, the enemy having opportunely opened a way for them through the heavy abatis which my troops had made on the west side of the bridge several days before; but this pursuit was soon recalled in consequence of a false report which unfortunately reached us that the enemy’s reserves, known to be fresh and of considerable strength, were threatening the position of Union Mills Ford.

Colonel Radford, with six companies Virginia Cavalry, was also ordered by General Johnston to cross Bull Run and attack the enemy from the direction of Lewis’ house. Conducted by one of my aides, Colonel Chisolm, by the Lewis Ford to the immediate vicinity of the suspension bridge, he charged a battery with great gallantry, took Colonel Corcoran, of the Sixty-ninth Regiment New York Volunteers, a prisoner, and captured the Federal colors of that regiment, as well as a number of the enemy. He lost, however, a promising officer of his regiment, Capt. Winston Radford.

Lieutenant-Colonel Mumford also led some companies of cavalry in hot pursuit, and rendered material service in the capture of prisoners and of cannon, horses, ammunition, &c., abandoned by the enemy in their flight. Captain Lay’s company of the Powhatan Troops and Utterback’s Rangers, Virginia Volunteers, attached to my person, did material service under Captain Lay in rallying troops broken for the time by the onset of the enemy’s masses.

During the period of the momentous events, fraught with the weal of our country, which were passing on the blood-stained plateau along the Sudley and Warrenton roads, other portions of the line of Bull Run had not been void of action of moment and of influence on the general result.

While Colonel Evans and his sturdy band were holding at bay the Federal advance beyond the turnpike the enemy made repeated demonstrations with artillery and infantry upon the line of Cooke’s brigade, with the serious intention of forcing the position, as General Schenck admits in his report. They were driven back with severe loss by Latham’s (a section) and Rogers’ four 6-pounders, and were so impressed with the strength of that line as to be held in check and inactive even after it had been stripped of all its troops but one company of the Nineteenth Virginia Regiment, under Captain Duke, a meritorious officer; and it is worthy of notice that in this encounter of our 6-pounder guns, handled by our volunteer artillerists, they had worsted such a notorious adversary as the Ayres (formerly Sherman’s) battery, which quit the contest under the illusion that it had weightier metal than its own to contend with.

The center brigades, Bonham’s and Longstreet’s, of the line of Bull Run, if not closely engaged, were, nevertheless, exposed for much of the day to an annoying, almost incessant fire of artillery of long range; but, by a steady, veteran-like maintenance of their positions, they held virtually paralyzed all day two strong brigades of the enemy with their batteries (four) of rifled guns.

As before said, two regiments of Bonham’s brigade–Second and Eighth South Carolina Volunteers-and Kemper’s battery took a distinguished part in the battle. The remainder–Third (Williams’), Seventh (Bacon’s) South Carolina Volunteers, Eleventh (Kirkland’s) North Carolina Regiment, six companies of the Eighth Louisiana Volunteers, Shields’ battery, and one Section of Walton’s battery, under Lieutenant Garnett–whether in holding their post or taking up the pursuit, officers and men discharged their duty with credit and promise.

Longstreet’s brigade, pursuant to orders prescribing his part of the operations of the center and right wing, was thrown across Bull Run early in the morning, and under a severe fire of artillery was skillfully disposed for the assault of the enemy’s batteries in that quarter, but was withdrawn subsequently, in consequence of the change of plan already mentioned and explained. The troops of this brigade were–First (Major Skinner), Eleventh (Garland’s), Twenty-fourth (Lieutenant-Colonel Hairston), Seventeenth (Corse’s) Virginia Regiments; Fifth North Carolina (Lieutenant-Colonel Jones), and Whitehead’s company Virginia Cavalry. Throughout the day these troops evinced the most soldierly spirit.

After the rout, having been ordered by General Johnston in the direction of Centreville in pursuit, these brigades advanced nearly to that place, when, night and darkness intervening, General Bonham thought it proper to direct his own brigade and that of General Longstreet back to Bull Run.

General D. R. Jones early in the day crossing Bull Run with his brigade, pursuant to orders indicating his part in the projected attack by our right wing and center on the enemy at Centreville, took up a position on the Union Hills and Centreville road more than a mile in advance of the run. Ordered back, in consequence of the miscarriage of the orders to General Ewell, the retrograde movement was necessarily made under a sharp fire of artillery.

At noon this brigade, in obedience to new instructions, was again thrown across Bull Run to make demonstration. Unsupported by other troops, the advance was gallantly made until within musket range of the enemy’s force–Colonel Davies’ brigade, in position near Rocky Run–and under the concentrated fire of their artillery. In this affair the Fifth, (Jenkins’) South Carolina and Captain Fontaine’s company of the Eighteenth Mississippi Regiment are mentioned by General Jones as having shown conspicuous gallantry, coolness, and discipline under a combined fire of infantry and artillery. Not only did the return fire of the brigade drive to cover the enemy’s infantry, but the movement unquestionably spread through the enemy’s ranks a sense of insecurity and danger from an attack by that route on their rear at Centreville, which served to augment the extraordinary panic which we know disbanded the entire Federal Army for the time. This is evident from the fact that Colonel Davies, the immediate adversary’s commander, in his official report, was induced to magnify one small company of our cavalry which accompanied the brigade into a force of 2,000 men, and Colonel Miles, the commander of the Federal reserves at Centreville, says the movement caused painful apprehensions for the left flank of their army.

General Ewell, occupying for the time the right of the lines of Bull Run, at Union Mills Ford, after the miscarriage of my orders for his advance upon Centreville, in the afternoon was ordered by General Johnston to bring up his brigade into battle, then raging on the left flank. Promptly executed as this movement was, the brigade, after a severe march, reached the field too late to share the glories as they had the labors of the day.  As the important position at the Union Mills had been left with but a slender guard, General Ewell was at once ordered to retrace his steps and resume his position,. to prevent the possibility of its seizure by any force of the enemy in that quarter. Brigadier-General Holmes, left with his brigade as a support to the same position in the original plan of battle, had also been called to the left, whither he marched with the utmost speed, but not in time to join actively in the battle. Walker’s rifled guns of the brigade, however, came up in time to be fired with precision and decided execution at the retreating enemy, and Scott’s cavalry, joining in the pursuit, assisted in the capture of prisoners and war munitions.

This victory, the details of which I have thus sought to chronicle as fully as were fitting an official report, it remains to record was dearly won by the death of many officers and men of inestimable value, belonging to all grades of our society. In the death of General Barnard E. Bee the Confederacy has sustained an irreparable loss, for, with great personal bravery and coolness, he possessed the qualities of an accomplished soldier and an able, reliable commander. Colonels Bartow and Fisher and Lieutenant-Colonel Johnson, of Hampton’s Legion, in the fearless command of their men, gave earnest of great usefulness to the service had they been spared to complete a career so brilliantly begun. Besides the field officers already mentioned as having been wounded while in the gallant discharge of their duties, many others also received severe wounds, after equally honorable and distinguished conduct, whether in leading their men forward or in rallying them when overpowered or temporarily shattered by the largely superior force to which we were generally opposed.

The subordinate grades were likewise abundantly conspicuous for zeal and capacity for the leadership of men in arms. To mention all who, fighting well, paid the lavish forfeit of their lives, or at least crippled, mutilated bodies, on the field of Manassas, cannot well be done within the compass of this paper; but a grateful country and mourning friends will not suffer their names and services to be forgotten and pass away unhonored.

Nor are those officers and men who were so fortunate as to escape the thick-flying deadly missiles of the enemy less worthy of praise for their endurance, firmness, and valor, than their brothers in arms whose lives were closed or bodies maimed on that memorable day. To mention all who exhibited ability and brilliant courage were impossible in this report; nor do the reports of brigade and other subordinate commanders supply full lists of all actually deserving of distinction. I can only mention those whose conduct came immediately under my notice or the consequence of whose actions happened to be signally important. It is fit that I should in this way commend to notice the dauntless conduct and imperturbable coolness of Colonel Evans, and well indeed was he supported by Colonel Sloan and the officers of the Fourth South Carolina Regiment, as also Major Wheat, than whom no one displayed more brilliant courage until carried from the field shot through the lungs, though happily not mortally stricken. But in the desperate, unequal conflict to which these brave gentlemen were for a time necessarily exposed, the behavior of officers and men generally was worthy of the highest admiration, and assuredly hereafter all there present may proudly say, We were of that band who fought the first hour of the battle of Manassas. Equal honors and credit must also be awarded in the pages of history to the gallant officers and men who, under Bee and Bartow, subsequently marching to their side, saved them from destruction, and relieved them from the brunt of the enemy’s attack.

The conduct of General Jackson also requires mention as eminently that of an able, fearless soldier and sagacious commander, one fit to lead his efficient brigade. His prompt, timely arrival before the plateau of the Henry house, and his judicious disposition of his troops, contributed much to the success of the day. Although painfully wounded in the hand, he remained on the field to the end of the battle, rendering invaluable assistance.

Col. William Smith was as efficient as self-possessed and brave. The influence of his example and his words of encouragement were not confined to his immediate command, the good conduct of which is especially noticeable, inasmuch as it had been embodied but a day or two before the battle.

Colonels Harper, Hunton, and Hampton, commanding regiments of the reserve, attracted my notice by their soldierly ability, as with their gallant commands they restored the fortunes of the day at a time when the enemy by a last desperate onset with heavy odds had driven our forces from the fiercely-contested ground around the Henry and Robinson houses. Veterans could not have behaved better than these well-led regiments.

High praise must also be given to Colonels Cocke, Early, and Elzey, brigade commanders; also to Colonel Kershaw, commanding for the time the Second and Eighth South Carolina Regiments. Under the instructions of General Johnston these officers reached the field at an opportune, critical moment, and disposed, handled, and fought their respective commands with sagacity, decision, and successful results, which have been described in detail.

Col. J. E. B. Stuart likewise deserves mention for his enterprise and ability as a cavalry commander. Through his judicious reconnaissance of the country on our left flank he acquired information, both of topographical features and the positions of the enemy, of the utmost importance in the subsequent and closing movements of the day on that flank, and his services in the pursuit were highly effective.

Capt. E. P. Alexander, C. S. Engineers, gave me seasonable and material assistance early in the day with his system of signals. Almost the first shot fired by the enemy passed through the tent of his party at the stone bridge, where they subsequently firmly maintained their position in the discharge of their duty–the transmission of messages of the enemy’s movements–for several hours under fire. Later, Captain Alexander acted as my aide-de-camp in the transmission of orders and in observation of the enemy.

I was most efficiently served throughout the day by my volunteer aides, Colonels Preston, Manning, Chesnut, Miles, Rice, Hayward, and Chisolm, to whom I tender my thanks for their unflagging, intelligent, and fearless discharge of the laborious, responsible duties Intrusted to them. To Lieut. S. W. Ferguson, aide-de-camp, and Colonel Hayward, who were habitually at my side from 12 noon until the close of the battle, my special acknowledgments are due. The horse of the former was killed under him by the same shell that wounded that of the latter. Both were eminently useful to me, and were distinguished for coolness and courage until the enemy gave way and fled in wild disorder in every direction–a scene the President of the Confederacy had the high satisfaction of witnessing, as he arrived upon the field at that exultant moment.

I also received from the time I reached the front such signal service from H. E. Peyton, at the time a private in the Loudoun Cavalry, that I have called him to my personal staff. Similar services were also rendered me repeatedly during the battle by T. J. Randolph, a volunteer acting aide-de-camp to Colonel Cocke. Capt. Clifton H. Smith, of the general staff, was also present on the field, and rendered efficient service in the transmission of orders.

It must be permitted me here to record my profound sense of my obligations to General Johnston for his generous permission to carry out my plans with such modifications as circumstances had required. From his services on the field as we entered it together, already mentioned, and his subsequent watchful management of the re-enforcements as they reached the vicinity of the field, our countrymen may draw the most auspicious auguries.

To Col. Thomas Jordan, my efficient and zealous assistant adjutant-general, much credit is due for his able assistance in the organization of the forces under my command and for the intelligence and promptness with which he has discharged all the laborious and important duties of his office.

Valuable assistance was given to me by Major Cabell, chief officer of the quartermaster’s department, in the sphere of his duties-duties environed by far more than the ordinary difficulties and embarrassments attending the operations of a long organized regular establishment.

Col. R. B. Lee, chief of subsistence department, had but just entered upon his duties, but his experience and long and varied services in his department made him as efficient as possible.

Capt. W. H. Fowle, whom Colonel Lee had relieved, had previously exerted himself to the utmost to carry out orders from these headquarters to render his department equal to the demands of the service. That it was not entirely so it is due to justice to say was certainly not his fault.

Deprived by the sudden severe illness of the medical director, Surg. Thomas H. Williams, his duties were discharged by Surg. R. L. Brodie to my entire satisfaction; and it is proper to say that the entire medical corps of the Army at present, embracing gentlemen of distinction in the profession, who had quit lucrative private practice, by their services in the field and subsequently did high honor to their profession.

The vital duties of the ordnance department were effectively discharged under the administration of my chief of artillery and ordnance, Col. S. Jones.

At one time, when reports of evil omen and disaster reached Camp Pickens with such circumstantiality as to give reasonable grounds of anxiety, its commander, Colonel Terrett, the commander of the intrenched batteries, Captain Sterrett, of the C. S. Navy, and their officers, made the most efficient possible preparations for the desperate defense of that position in extremity; and in this connection I regret my inability to mention the names of those patriotic gentlemen of Virginia by the gratuitous labor of whose slaves the intrenched camp at Manassas had been mainly constructed, relieving the troops from that laborious service, and giving opportunity for their military instruction.

Lieut. Col. Thomas H. Williamson, the engineer of these works, assisted by Capt. D. B. Harris, discharged his duties with untiring energy and devotion as well as satisfactory skill.

Capt. W. H. Stevens, engineer C. S. Army, served with the advanced forces at Fairfax Court-House for some time before the battle. He laid out the works there in admirable accordance with the purposes for which they were designed, and yet so as to admit of ultimate extension and adaptation to more serious uses as means and part of a system of real defense when determined upon. He has shown himself to be an officer of energy and ability.

Maj. Thomas G. Rhett, after having discharged for several months the laborious duties of adjutant-general to the commanding officer of Camp Pickens, was detached to join the Army of the Shenandoah just on the eve of the advance of the enemy, but volunteering his services, was ordered to assist on the staff of General Bonham, joining that officer at Centreville on the night of the 17th, before the battle of Bull Run, where he rendered valuable services, until the arrival of General Johnston, on the 20th of July, when he was called to the place of chief of staff of that officer. It is also proper to acknowledge the signal services rendered by Cols. B. F. Terry and T. Lubbock, of Texas, who had attached themselves to the staff of General Longstreet. These gentlemen made daring and valuable reconnaissances of the enemy’s positions, assisted by Captains Goree and Chichester; they also carried orders to the field, and on the following day accompanied Captain White-, head’s troop to take possession of Fairfax Court-House. Colonel Terry, with his unerring rifle, severed the halliard, and thus lowered the Federal flag found still floating from the cupola of the court-house there. He also secured a large Federal garrison flag, designed, it is said, to be unfurled over our intrenchments at Manassas.

In connection with the unfortunate casualty of the day, that is the miscarriage of the orders sent by courier to Generals Holmes and Ewell to attack the enemy in flank and reverse at Centreville, through which the triumph of our arms was prevented from being still more decisive, I regard it in place to say a divisional organization, with officers in command of divisions, with appropriate rank, as in European services, would greatly reduce the risk of such mishaps, and would advantageously simplify the communications of a general in command of a field with his troops.

While glorious for our people, and of crushing effect upon the morale of our hitherto confident and overweening adversary, as were the events of the battle of Manassas, the field was only won by stout fighting, and, as before reported, with much loss, as is precisely exhibited in the papers herewith, marked F, G, and H,(@) and being lists of the killed and wounded. The killed outright numbered 369, the wounded 1,483, making an aggregate of 1,852.

The actual loss of the enemy will never be known; it may now only be conjectured. Their abandoned dead, as they were buried by our people where they fell, unfortunately were not enumerated, but many parts of the field were thick with their corpses as but few battle-fields have ever been. The official reports of the enemy are studiously silent on this point, but still afford us data for an approximate estimate. Left almost in the dark in respect to the losses of Hunter’s and Heintzelman’s divisions, first, longest, and most hotly engaged, we are informed that Sherman’s brigade, Tyler’s division, suffered in killed, wounded, and missing 609; that is, about eighteen per cent. of the brigade. A regiment of Franklin’s brigade (Gorman’s) lost twenty-one per cent., Griffin’s (battery) loss was thirty per cent., and that of Keyes’ brigade, which was so handled by its commander as to be exposed to only occasional volleys from our troops, was at least ten per cent. To these facts add the repeated references in the reports of the more reticent commanders to the “murderous” fire to which they were habitually exposed, the “pistol-range” volleys, and galling musketry of which they speak as scourging their ranks, and we are warranted in placing the entire loss of the Federalists at over forty-five hundred in killed, wounded, and prisoners. To this may be legitimately added as a casualty of the battle the thousands of fugitives from the field, who have never rejoined their regiments, and who are as much lost the enemy’s service as if slain or disabled by wounds. These may not be included under the head of missing, because in every instance of such report we took as many prisoners of those brigades or regiments as are reported missing.

A list appended exhibits some 1,460 of their wounded and others who fell into our hands and were sent to Richmond.(*) Some were sent to other points, so that the number of prisoners, including wounded who did not die, may be set down as not less than 1,600. Besides these a considerable number who could not be removed from the field died at several farm-houses and field hospitals within ten days following the battle.

To serve the future historian of this war I will note the fact that among the captured Federalists are officers and men of forty-seven regiments of volunteers, besides from some nine different regiments of regular troops, detachments of which were engaged. From their official reports we learn of a regiment of volunteers engaged, six regiments of Miles’ division, and the five regiments of Runyon’s brigade, from which we have neither sound nor wounded prisoners. Making all allowances for mistakes, we are warranted in saying that the Federal army consisted of at least fifty-five regiments of volunteers, eight companies of regular infantry, four of marines, nine of regular cavalry, and twelve batteries of forty-nine guns. These regiments at one time, as will appear from a published list appended, marked K, numbered in the aggregate 54,140, and average 964 each. From an order of the enemy’s commander, however, date, July 13, we learn that one hundred men front each regiment were directed to remain in charge of their respective camps. Some allowance must further be made for the sick and details, which would reduce the average to eight hundred men. Adding the regular cavalry, infantry, and artillery present, an estimate of their force may be made.(+)

A paper appended, marked L, exhibits in part the ordnance and supplies captured, including some twenty-eight field pieces of the best character of arm, with over one hundred rounds of ammunition for each gun, thirty-seven caissons, six forges, four battery wagons, sixty-four artillery horses completely equipped, 500,000 rounds of small-arms ammunition, 4,500 sets of accouterments, over 500 muskets, some nine regimental and garrison flags, with a large number of pistols, knapsacks, swords, canteens, blankets, a large store of axes and intrenching tools, wagons, ambulances, horses, camp and garrison equipage, hospital stores, and some subsistence.

Added to these results may rightly be noticed here that by this battle an invading army, superbly equipped, within twenty miles of their base of operations, has been converted into one virtually besieged and exclusively occupied for months in the construction of a stupendous series of fortifications for the protection of its own capital.

I beg to call attention to the reports of the several subordinate commanders for reference to the signal parts played by individuals of their respective commands. Contradictory statements found in these reports should not excite surprise, when we remember how difficult if not impossible it is to reconcile the narrations of bystanders or participants in even the most inconsiderable affair, much less the shifting, thrilling scenes of a battlefield.

Accompanying are maps showing the positions of the armies on the morning of the 21st July and of three several stages of the battle; also of the line of Bull Run north of Blackburn’s Ford. These maps, from actual surveys made by Capt. D. B. Harris, assisted by Mr. John Grant, were drawn by the latter with a rare accuracy worthy of high commendation.(#)

In conclusion, it is proper and doubtless expected that through this report my countrymen should be made acquainted with some of the sufficient causes that prevented the advance of our forces and prolonged vigorous pursuit of the enemy to and beyond the Potomac. The War Department has been fully advised long since of all of those causes, some of which only are proper to be here communicated. An army which had fought as ours on that day, against uncommon odds, under a July sun, most of the time without water and without food except a hastily-snatched scanty meal at dawn, was not in condition for the toil of an eager, effective pursuit of an enemy immediately after the battle.

On the following day an unusually heavy and unintermitting fall of rain intervened to obstruct our advance with reasonable prospect of fruitful results. Added to this, the want of a cavalry force of sufficient numbers made an efficient pursuit a military impossibility.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


General, Commanding

General S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va

*Summarized in No.121, post.

@Namely: 3 colonels, 1 major, 13 captains, 36 lieutenants, 2 quartermasters, 5 surgeons, 7 assistant surgeons, 2 chaplains, 15 citizens, and 1,376 enlisted men.

+Report No. 120, post.

#Not found

Official Reports – CSA

13 09 2007


#64 – General P. G. T. Beauregard

#65 – Colonel Thomas Jordan

#66 – Brigadier General M. L. Bonham

#67 – Colonel J. B. Kershaw

#68 – Colonel J. H. Williams

#69 – Colonel T. G. Bacon

#70 – Lieutenant Colonel J. W. Henagan

#71 – Colonel E. B. C. Cash

#72 – Colonel R. C. W. Radford

#73 – Captain Del. Kemper

#74 – Colonel R. E. Rodes

#75 – Brigadier General David R. Jones

#76 – Brigadier General James Longstreet

#76a – Colonel Montgomery D. Corse

#77 – Colonel Jubal A. Early

#78 – Major John B. Walton

#79 – Lieutenant C. W. Squires

#81 – General Joseph E. Johnston

#81a – Colonel William N. Pendleton

#82 – Brigadier General Thomas J. Jackson 

#82a – Colonel James W. Allen

#82b – Captain James H. Waters

#82c – Major William H. C. Whiting

#82d – Brigadier General S. R. Gist, Major R. A. Howard, Captain A. Vander Horst

#82e – Captain Thomas J. Goldsby

#82f – Captain John D. Imboden

#82g – Colonel Arnold Elzey

#83 – Colonel J. E. B. Stuart

#84, Pt. 1 – General P. G. T. Beauregard

#84, Pt. 2 – General P. G. T. Beauregard

#85 – Major J. B. Walton

#86 – Brigadier General Milledge L. Bonham

#87 – Colonel William W. Kirkland

#88 – Colonel J. B. Kershaw

#89 – Colonel J. H. Williams

#90 – Colonel Thomas G. Bacon

#91 – Colonel E. B. C. Cash

#92 – Colonel R. C. W. Radford

#93 – Lt. Colonel T. T. Munford

#94 – Captain Del. Kemper

#95 – Brigadier General Richard S. Ewell

#96 – Brigadier General David R. Jones

#97 – Colonel W. S. Featherston

#98 – Colonel E. R. Burt

#99 – Colonel M. Jenkins

#100 – Brigadier General James Longstreet

#100a – Lieutenant Colonel Joseph P. Jones

#101 – Colonel M. D. Corse

#101a – Colonel Philip St. George Cocke

#102 – Colonel Eppa Hunton

#103 – Colonel R. E. Withers 

#104 – Colonel Robert T. Preston

#105 – Colonel William Smith 

#106 – Captain John S. Langhorne 

#107 – Captain H. Grey Latham 

#108 – Captain Arthur L. Rogers 

#109 – Colonel Jubal A. Early

#110 – Colonel Nathan G. Evans 

#110a – Major Chatham R. Wheat

#111 – Colonel J. B. E. Sloan

#112 – Captain W. R. Terry 

#113 – Lieutenant George S. Davidson 

#114 – Captain John D. Alexander 

#115 – Brigadier General Theophilus H. Holmes 

#116 – Colonel Wade Hampton 

#117 – Troop Strengths, Beauregard’s Army, July 21, 1861

#118 – Troops Engaged, Beauregard’s Army, July 21, 1861

#119 – Major Thomas G. Rhett 

#120 – Strength of the Union Army, July 21, 1861, as reported by Confederate authority

#121 – Confederate Casualties, July 21, 1861

#122 – Captain E. P. Alexander

#123 – Captain John F. Lay

#124 – Captain Edgar Whitehead

#125 – Generals J. E. Johnston & G. T. Beauregard

The Dog Ate My Homework

11 05 2007

OK folks – I’ve got a full plate of work, teaching, and class-taking over the next week or so.  Since bills must be paid, I’m afraid I won’t be able to post much.  Here are some things I’m thinking about thinking about for the blog:

I’m planning a new page featuring links to on-line, downloadable books associated with First Bull Run.  I think it will be pretty useful to anyone trying to learn more about the campaign.

I’m finding out some weird stuff about the William Fitzhugh Lee buried in Shepherdstown’s Elmwood Cemetery

On a related note, I’ve found some interesting threads to and from William Kirkland, planted in the same grass as the aforementioned Lee.

I’ll post some thoughts on letters, collected letters, and selected letters prompted by the purchase of a new book that analyzes private letters of R. E. Lee.

I promise to try to get to that review of the Heintzelman biography.  Sometimes I really don’t like to write reviews, and this is one of those times.

I am on the news stand once again, and I’ll let you know what to look for.

Red pants.  I’m always thinking about those damned red pants.

Check back often, at least once each and every day; I’m not sure exactly when I’ll be able to post.  The important thing is for you all to keep my hits (and my ego) up!

Back from the Paper Chase

8 05 2007

I have lots of stuff to write about, but not much time in which to write it.

I got back from my Road Trip on Sunday.  All-in-all it was a productive trip.  At Carlisle I turned up a nifty letter written by a member of Co. C, 205th PA – my great-grandfather’s unit – outside Petersburg in which preferences for the upcoming presidential election were forcefully expressed.  I also copied some material on First Bull Run that should prove useful in my examination of the mystery of the red-trousered Zouaves seen everywhere on the field.  And I found some info on the 16th CT at Antietam that should prove useful.  Thanks again to Art Bergeron and the rest of the staff there for all their help.

I stayed in Gettysburg on Thursday night, and killed some time at the Gateway Gettysburg Theater watching 300.  I dug it, but was taken aback by the sudden emergence of Scottish accents midway through.  Not a chick flick, that’s for sure.  The next day I did some book shopping in town and cruised the visitor’s center (VC) and battlefield quickly before turning south down 15 for Sharpsburg.

At the archives of Antietam National Battlefield on Friday I found a lot of primary source material (letters) on the 16th CT, and some other information on the regiment provided to the park by descendants over the years.  The most pleasant and serendipitous find was the resting place of my great-grandfather.  He apparently resides in the Vicksburg Cemetery in or near Roaring Springs, Blair County, PA.  Ted Alexander just happened to have a copy of a book on Blair County soldiers in the park’s library.  Thanks, Ted, for your assistance.

hkd-grave.jpgI dined at the Bavarian Inn in Shepherdstown with my father-in-law and his brothers on Friday night.  Later we crowded around my laptop to watch the Historical Films documentary “Antietam”, the film shown in the VC.  On Saturday we toured the Elmwood Cemetery in Shepherdstown, resting place of Confederate staff officer and author of Stonewall Rode with Me Henry Kyd (rhymes with “tied”) Douglas, as well as Bull Run participants Lt. Col. William Fitzhugh Lee of the 33rd VA (mortally wounded at BR1) and William W. Kirkland of the 11th (later 21st) NC.

We also spent some time at the Rumsey memorial in Shepherdstown.  If you have been laboring under the impression that Robert Fulton invented the steamboat, go here for a history lesson.  We managed to avoid the May Day parade in town, which based on the attire of the marchers, the name of the parade, and the presence of a college campus appears to be some mix of “the arts”, Bolshevism and bon ton roulette.

mannie.jpgWe crossed the Potomac and stopped by the Douglas home Ferry Hill Place; the Grove Farm (site of the famous Brady photos of Lincoln and McClellan); Lee’s HQ; the National Cemetery; and the Pry House and its medical display (my father-in-law’s brother is a retired physician).  The next stop was the VC at Antietam.  I ran into ranger and fellow blogger John Hoptak and had a nice but too short talk with him.  Next up was ranger Mannie Gentile (left) who gave an engaging overview of the campaign to a full room on the observation deck.  Rather than go into the details of why Harper’s Ferry was in Virginia in 1862 but is in West Virginia today, Mannie simply explained that it was done “to confuse middle schoolers”.  Works for me.  We didn’t join Mannie’s group on the field, but I did get a chance to speak with him for a few minutes in the VC on Sunday.

I gave the relatives a quick tour of the field, going first to the seldom visited Upper Bridge, where most of the Federal Army that fought on the 17th crossed the Antietam.  We took a brief detour to Starke Ave. to view the stone outcropping behind which members of the Iron Brigade took position.  Then it was south to the Juan Valdez McKinley coffee monument and the Georgian’s Overlook.

view.jpgAfter that we drove to Turner’s Gap via Boonesboro – sadly, I had no time to stop at the creamery.  Rather than walk the mile down the Appalachian Trail from the Mountain House (Stone Mountain Inn) to Fox’s Gap, the group opted to trek up to the Washington Monument.  The view from atop the monument was well worth the climb.  After that it was back to our hotel (the Clarion) in Shepherdstown for dinner and an early night.


16th-ct.jpgOn Sunday I had just enough time to drive back to the VC, where I spoke briefly with Mannie.  I needed to at least visit the United Church of Christ in town to see the former site of the 16th CT stained glass window – now marked by white plywood.  Service was letting out and I had some time to chat with Reverend Catlett.  It turns out he has some documentation on the window in question.  Unfortunately we were both pressed for time, so we left each other with the understanding that I would be returning to look at the material.

It was a busy four days.  I regret that I did not have enough time at Carlisle, the ANB archives or the UCC in Sharpsburg.  I’ve learned a lot about scheduling for this type of trip, and hopefully will make fewer mistakes along those lines in the future.

Willie Hardee

13 03 2007

A couple of years ago, I took a tour of Civil War battlefields in North Carolina put together by my friend Teej Smith.  We visited Monroe’s Crossroads with Eric Wittenberg, Averasboro with Mark Smith and Wade Sokolosky, and Forts Fisher (Bull Run thread #1) and Anderson with Chris Fonvielle.  We also spent a long, hot day at Bentonville with Mark Bradely, author of the definitive study of the battle, Last Stand in the Carolinas.  It was there I was able to put a “face” to one of the most poignant stories of the war, that of General William J. Hardee and his young son, Willie.

Born in Georgia in 1815, “Old Reliable” William Hardee was an 1838 graduate of West Point, winner of two brevets in Mexico, one time commandant of cadets at his alma mater, and the author of the standard U. S. Army manual Rifle and Light Infantry Tactics for the Exercise and Manoeuvres of Troops When Acting as Light Infantry or Riflemen (Bull Run thread #2).  A Lieutenant Colonel before the war, he resigned his commission when Georgia seceded.  He served at high levels in the Confederate armies in Kentucky and Tennessee, but when offered command of the Army of Tennessee after Chattanooga, Hardee demurred.  He served under Joe Johnston (Bull Run thread #3) and John Hood through the Atlanta Campaign; after the battle of Jonesboro he requested a transfer out from under Hood’s command.  He was in command of the forces that surrendered Savannah and Charleston to William T. Sherman (Bull Run thread #4).  As the war wound to a close, Hardee found himself once again under Johnston’s command, in an army group that boasted an officer corps reminiscent of a Confederate Old Home week.  General officers present at the climactic Battle of Bentonville included blasts from the past Braxton Bragg, D. H. Hill, LaFayette McLaws, William Loring, and William Taliaferro. 

 I won’t get into the details of the Battle of Bentonville.  It was a hard fought affair that lasted three days, March 19, 20, & 21, 1865, and is perhaps most famous for what didn’t happen at its close.  On the 22nd Sherman, in command of two armies, turned away from Johnston knowing his old foe was significantly outnumbered and backed up to a stream (Mill Creek) with only one crossing, to march east toward his original objective, Goldsboro.  There Sherman intended to add the forces of generals John Schofield and Alfred Terry (Bull Run thread #5) and commence the final march to join Grant at Petersburg.  But earlier, on the 21st, Maj. Gen. Joseph Mower led his division of Frank Blair’s 17th Corps of Oliver Howard’s (Bull Run thread #6) Army of the Tennessee against the Confederate left in an effort to cut the rebels off from their escape route over the Mill Creek Bridge.

Mower’s advance slammed into the Confederate left, overrunning Johnston’s headquarters, forcing the General to flee on foot.  Johnston had charged Hardee, in command on the right, with gathering troops to mount a defense of the bridge.  “Old Reliable” scraped together a force consisting of infantry and cavalry.  One of these units was the 8th Texas Cavalry, aka Terry’s Texas Rangers (Bull Run thread #7).

In the ranks of the 8th Texas that day was the General’s 16 year old son, Willie.  Young Hardee had first joined the Rangers in the first half of 1864, but the regiment sent the boy, who had run away from a Georgia school to sign up, to his father.  In order to keep better watch over him, the General  gave his son a position on his staff.  Except for a brief stint with a battery, Willie served on his father’s staff up until the march toward Bentonville.  Reunited with the Rangers on the march, the boy pleaded with his father for permission to serve with them.  After an enticement of an officer’s rank and a position on Johnston’s staff was resisted by the son, the father relented.  He told Capt. Kyle of the regiment, “Swear him into service in your company, as nothing else will satisfy.”

As Mower’s attack reached a climax, Hardee assembled the Rangers and the 4th TN cavalry of Col. Baxter Smith’s command.  One eyewitness reported that the General and his son tipped hats in salute to each other as the line formed.  “Old Reliable” personally led the assault with drawn sword.  The cavalry attack pushed the Union skirmishers back on their main line, and the rebel infantry followed.  Mower’s assault came to a halt.  Sherman, who was not happy that Mower’s action was started in the first place, ordered Blair’s corps to disengage, much to the chagrin of army commander Howard (who as a professor of mathematics at West Point before the war had been entrusted with tutoring the son of the commandant of cadets, William J. Hardee).

Hardee was pleased with the performance of the troops in dealing with the threat to the Mill Creek bridge.  As he headed to the rear he joked with Wade Hampton (Bull Run Thread #8), but his high spirits were dashed by the sight of of young Willie’s limp body being supported in his saddle by another Ranger riding behind.  He had received a mortal chest wound in the field (pictured below) in front of the Federal line. 






The General directed his son be taken to Hillsboro to the home of his niece, Susannah Hardee Kirkland, wife of Brig. Gen. William W. Kirkland, one of Bragg’s brigade commanders (Bull Run thread #9).  It was there that Willie Hardee died three days later on March 24.  In a small military ceremony which his father attended, he was buried in St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church cemetery.

As my friend Mike and I travelled back to Pittsburgh from Wilmington after the last of our tours, we decided to make a little detour to Bennett Place (the site of Johnston’s surrender to Sherman is one stop all enthusiasts should make).  Checking with the staff at the site we learned that Hillsboro is not far away and decided to go a little out of our way to find Willie’s grave.  It took quite a bit of searching.  Once we found the cemetery we still had no idea what the marker looked like.  But we found it; actually, I think Mike found it, and it required the brushing away of quite a few leaves.  My camera batteries were out of juice, and Mike’s were dying, but with the last photo on his camera we recorded the image below (I’m not sure why the marker says he was 17 – everything I’ve read says he was 16). 




I can’t imagine what the General must have felt while standing on that same spot so long ago.  Surely he second guessed his decision to allow Willie to join the Rangers.  But did he question the cause that had led him, his family, and his countrymen to this state of affairs? Hardee survived the war to become president of the Selma and Meridian Railroad and coauthor of The Irish in America.  He passed away on Nov. 6, 1873 in Wytheville, VA and is buried in Live Oak Cemetery in Selma, AL.  But I have to believe a big part of him died that day in that churchyard outside Raleigh.

Bull Run Threads

1 – This fort was named for the commander of the 6th NC, Col. C. F. Fisher, killed at First Bull Run.

2 – This manual describes tactics that would have been employed during First Bull Run.

3 – Johnston commanded the Confederate forces at First Bull Run.

4 – Sherman commanded a brigade in Daniel Tyler’s federal division at First Bull Run.

5 – Terry commanded the 2nd CT Infantry in Keyes’s brigade of Tyler’s division at First Bull Run.

6 – Howard commanded a brigade in Heintzelman’s Federal division at First Bull Run.

7 – The 8th TX Cavalry was recruited by Benjamin Franklin Terry and Thomas Lubbock, who both served on the staff of James Longstreet, a brigade commander in Beauregard’s Army of the Potomac at First Bull Run.

8 – Hampton commanded the Hampton Legion at First Bull Run, and was wounded in the battle.

9 – Kirkland commanded the 11th NC Volunteers (later the 21st NC Infantry) of Milledge L. Bonham’s brigade of the Army of the Potomac at First Bull Run.


Bradley, M. L., Last Stand in the Carolinas: The Battle of Bentonville

Eicher & Eicher, Civil War High Commands

Hughes, Jr., N. C., Bentonville: The Final Battle of Sherman & Johnston

Hughes, Jr., N. C., General William J. Hardee, Old Reliable

Moore, M. A., Moore’s Historical Guide to the Battle of Bentonville

Warner, E. J., Generals in Gray

Order of Battle – CSA

8 02 2007




B = Biographical Sketch D = Diaries M = Memoirs N = Newspaper Accounts OC = Official Correspondence OR = Official Report PC = Private Correspondence

Army of the Potomac

Brig. Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard (M, OC1OR1, OR2 Pt 1OR2 Pt 2, OR3,)

Acting Assistant Adjutant General (AAAG)

  • Col. T. Jordan (OR)
  • Capt. C. H. Smith

Acting Assistant Quartermaster (AAQ)

  • Maj. Cabell


  • Col. R. B. Lee

Signal Officer


  • Col. Williamson


  • Chief Surg R. L. Brodie


  • Col. S. Jones

Aides-de-camp (ADC)

  • Col. Chesnut
  • Col. Chisolm
  • Col. Hayward
  • Col. Manning 
  • Col. Miles
  • Col. Preston
  • Col. Rice
  • Capt. D. B. Harris
  • Capt. W. H. Stevens
  • Lt. W. Ferguson
  • Lt. H. E. Peyton

Headquarters Escort

  • Capt. John F. Lay, Powhatan Troop (OR)
    • Capt. K. E. Utterback, Little Fork Rangers

First Brigade

Brig. Gen. Milledge L. Bonham (OR1, OR2)

  • Col. Lay, AAG
  • Col. Kemper, AAQ
  • Lt. Washington, AAQ
  • Maj. Kennedy, Chief Commissary
  • Maj. Walton, Military Secretary
  • Gen. Hagood, ADC
  • Gen. McGowan, ADC
  • Col. Aldrich, ADC
  • Col. Lipscomb, ADC
  • Col. Simpson, ADC
  • Maj. Butler, ADC
  • Maj. Davies, ADC
  • Maj. M. B. Lipsocmb, ADC
  • Maj. Tompkins, ADC
  • Capt. A. Moss, ADC
  • Capt. Nyles, ADC
  • Capt. Stevens, ADC
  • Capt. Venable, ADC

11th NCV (later 21st NCI)

2nd SC

  • Col J. B. Kershaw (OR1, OR2)
  • Unknown (1) (PC)
  • Unknown (2) (PC)
    • Co. I
      • Unknown (1) (PC)
      • Unknown (2) (PC)

3rd SC

  • Col. J. H. Williams (OR1, OR2)
    • Co. A
      • Cpl. Taliaferro N. Simpson (PC)
      • Pvt. Richard W. Simpson (PC1, PC2)

7th SC

  • Col. T. G. Bacon (OR1, OR2)
    • Co. F – Calloway K. Henderson (M)

8th SC

  • Col. E. B. C. Cash (OR1, OR2)
    • Lt. Col. J. W. Henagan (OR)

8th LA (N)

  • Col. H. B. Kelly (Not in Johnston’s OOB)
    • Co. B – Capt. A. Larose (N)

30th VA Cav

  • Col. R. C. W. Radford (OR1, OR2)
    • Lt. Col. T. T.Munford (OR) (M)

Alexandria Light Artillery (4 Guns)

1st Company Richmond Howitzers (4 Guns)

  • Capt. J. C. Shields

Second Brigade

Brig. Gen. Richard S. Ewell (OR, PC1, PC2)

  • Lt. Col. Charles Humphrey Tyler, AAAG
  • Capt. Fitzhugh Lee, AAAG
  • Capt. Charles H. Rhodes, AQM
  • Lt. George Campbell Brown, ADC (M)
  • Cadet John Taliaferro, ADC
  • Robert F. Mason, ADC
  • Edgar A. Hudnut, Clerk

5th AL (D)

6th AL

  • Col. J. J. Seibels
    • BHB (PC)

6th LA

  • Col. J. G. Seymour
    • Co. E – 1st Sgt. John Tobin (PC)

Cavalry Battalion

  • Col. J. G. Jenifer

Washington Artillery (4 Guns)

  • T. L. Rosser

Third Brigade

Brig. Gen. David R. Jones (OR1, OR2)

  • Lt. Latham, AAAG
  • Capt. Coward, AAQ
  • Capt. Curfell, AAQ
  • Capt. Ford, AAQ
  • Capt. Taylor, AAQ
  • Lt. McLemore, AAQ

17th MS

  • Col. W. S. Featherstone (OR)

18th MS

  • Col. E. R. Burt (OR)

5th SC

  • Col. Micah Jenkins (OR)

Flood’s Company, 30th VA Cav

  • Capt. J. W. Flood

Washington Artillery (2 Guns)

  • Capt. M. B. Miller

Fourth Brigade

Brig. Gen. James Longstreet (OR1, OR2)

5th NCI

  • Col. McRae
  • Lt. Col. Joseph P. Jones (OR)
  • Unknown (PC)
    • Co. E – Capt. Samuel Reeves (PC)

1st VA

  • Col. Moore
  • Maj. F. G. Skinner

11th VA

  • Col. S. Garland

17th VA

24th VA

  • Col. P. Hairston

Company E, 30th VA Cav

  • Capt. E. Whitehead (OR)

Washington Artillery (2 Guns) (N)

  • Capt. Garnett

5th Brigade

Col. Philip St. George Cocke (OR)

  • Capt. Harris, Chief Engineer

8th VA

  • Col. E. Hunton (M, OR)

18th VA

  • Col. R. E. Withers (OR)

19th VA

  • Col. P. St. George Cocke
  • Lt. Co. J. B. Strange

28th VA

  • Col. R. T. Preston (OR)
    • Co. H – Pvt. William C. Kean (PC1, PC2, PC3)

49th VA (Battalion)

  • Col. W. Smith (M, OR)

Schaeffer’s Independent Battalion (N1, N2)

  • Cpt. F. B. Schaeffer (N1, N2)
    • Beauregard Rifles (N)
    • Crescent Blues (N1, N2, N3)
    • New Market Volunteers (N)

Loudon Artillery (4 Guns)

  • Capt. Arthur L. Rogers (OR)
    • Lieut. Henry Heaton

Lynchburg Artillery (4 Guns)

  • Capt. H. Grey Latham (OR)

Wise Troop (Cavalry Company)

  • Capt. John S. Langhorne (OR)
    • Lt. Charles Minor Blackford (PC, M)

6th Brigade

Col. Jubal A. Early (OR1, OR2)

  • Capt. Gardner, AAAG
  • Lt. Willis, ADC

7th LA

  • Col. H. T. Hays
    • Co. B – L. D. (PC)
    • Co. H. – Pvt. John Stacker Brooks (N)

13th MS

  • Col. W. Barksdale

7th VA

  • Col. J. L. Kemper

Washington Artillery (5 Guns) (N)

  • Lt. C. W. Squires (OR)
  • Lt. J. B. Richardson
  • Lt. J. B. Whittington

7th Brigade

Col. Nathan G. Evans (B, OR)

  • Capt. A. L. Evans, AAAG
  • Capt. McCausland, ADC
  • Capt. Rogers, ADC

1st Special LA Battalion (N1, N2, N3)

4th SC

  • Col. J. B. E. Sloan (OR)

Alexander’s Troop, 30th VA Cav

  • Capt. J. D. Alexander (OR)

Terry’s Troop, 30th VA Cav

  • Capt. W. R. Terry (OR)

1 Section Lathams Artillery (2 Guns)

  • Lt. George S. Davidson (OR)
  • Lt. Clark Leftwich (PC)

Reserve Brigade

Brig. Gen. Theophilus H. Holmes (OR)

  • Lt. Walker, AAAG

1st AR

  • Col. J. F. Fagan

2nd TN

  • Col. W. Bate

Purcell Artillery (6 Guns)

  • Capt. L. Walker

Albemarle Light Horse

  • Capt. Eugene Davis
  • Major John Scott

Hampton’s SC Legion (6 Companies)

Col. Wade Hampton (W) (OR); Capt. J. Conner (PC1, PC2)

  • Unknown 1 (PC)
  • Unknown 2 (PC)
  • Unknown 3 (PC)
    • Co. A
      • Chaplain W[ashington]. L[ight]. I[nfantry]. (PC)
      • William C. Heriot (PC)
      • Charles W. Hutson (PC)
      • John E. Poyas (PC1, PC2)
      • Unknown 1 (PC)
      • Unknown 2 (PC)
      • Unknown 3 (PC)

Harrison’s Battalion of Cavalry (4 Companies)

  • Maj. Julian Harrison

Camp Pickens Battery

  • Capt. I. S. Sterrett
    • Capt. William King (PC1, PC2)

Army of the Shenandoah

Gen. Joseph E. Johnston (M, OR1, OR2)

Acting Adjutant General (AAG)

Acting Assistant Adjutant General (AAAG)

  • Capt. Thomas L. Preston

Acting Assistant Quartermaster (AAQ)

  • Maj. McLean


  • Maj. Kearsley


  • Maj. William Henry Chase Whiting


  • Col. W. N. Pendleton (OR)


  • Col. Thomas

Aides-de-camp (ADC)

  • Col. Cole
  • Col. Duncan
  • Maj. Dees
  • Capt. Fauntleroy
  • Capt. Mason
  • Lt. James B. Washington

1st Brigade

Brig. Gen. Thomas J. Jackson (OR, PC)

  • Col. F. B. Jones, AAAG
  • Lt. A. S. Pendleton, Ordnance
  • Capt. Marshall, ADC
  • Lt. T. G. Lee, ADC
  • Cadet N. W. Lee, ADC
  • Cadet Thompson, ADC

2nd VA (M)

  • Col. J. W. Allen (OR)

4th VA (M)

  • Col. J. F. Preston
    • Co. H – Pvt. Robert A. Glasgow (PC)
    • Co. I – Pvt. John H. B. Jones (M)

5th VA

  • Col. K. Harper
    • Co. L – Capt. J. H. Waters (OR)

27th VA

  • Lt. Col. J. Echols

33rd VA (8 Companies) (M)

  • Col. A. C. Cummings (M1, M2, PC1, PC2)
    • L. Jacquelin Smith, AAG
    • Sgt. Major Randolph Barton (M, PC)
    •  “G” (PC)
      • Co. A – Pvt. John O. Casler (MPC)
      • Co. H
        • 4th Sgt Harrison B. Jones (D)
        • Pvt. Martin Van Buren Kite (PC)

Rockbridge VA Artillery (4 Guns)

  • Col.W. N. Pendleton (OR)
    • Capt. J. B. Brockenborough
      • Artilleryman Clement Fishburne (PC)

2nd Brigade

Col. Francis Bartow (K)

  • Brig. Gen. S. R. Gist, ADC
  • Col. Shingler, ADC
  • Maj. Stevens, ADC

7th GA

  • Lt. Col. L. J. Gartell
    • Co. D
      • Pvt. Robert R. Murray (M)
      • Unknown (M)
    • Co. K – Capt. Charles K. Maddox (PC)

8th GA

  • Lt. Col. W. M. Gardner
    • Unknown (PC)
    • Co. A – Virgil Stewart (M)
    • Co. B
      • P. W. A. (PC)
      • Pvt. James B. Grant (PC)
      • Pvt. E. Starke Law (PC)

Wise Artillery (Alburtis’ Battery) (4 Guns)

  • Capt. E. G. Alburtis
    • Lt. John Pelham (PC)

3rd Brigade

Brig. Gen. Barnard E. Bee (K)

Maj. William H. C. Whiting placed in command after the battle (OR)

  • Capt. T. L. Preston, AAAG
    • Brig. Gen. S. R. Gist
    • Maj. R. A. Howard
    • Capt. A. Vander Horst (Gist, Howard, & Vander Horst filed this OR for Bee’s Brigade, but are not listed on any OOB as part of Bee’s staff)

4th AL (M)

  • Col. Egbert J. Jones (MW)
  • Lt. Col. Evander M. Law (W)
  • Maj. Charles L.Scott (W)
  • Capt. Thomas J. Goldsby (OR)
  • Unknown (PC)

2nd MS

  • Col. W. C. Falkner
    • Co. G – Capt. Hugh R. Miller (PC)

11th MS (Companies A & F)

  • Lt. Col. P. F. Liddell

6th NC (Not Brigaded) (N)

  • Col. Charles. F. Fisher (K)
  • Lt. Col. Charles E. Lightfoot
    • Co. E – Lt. J. A. McPherson (PC)
    • Co. G – Lt. Benjamin Rush Smith (PC)
    • Co. I – Capt. Richard Watt York (PC1, PC2, PC3, PC4)
      • Unknown Private (PC)

Staunton Artillery (4 Guns)

  • Capt. J. Imboden (M, OR)

4th Brigade

Brig. Gen. Edmund Kirby Smith (W); Col. Arnold Elzey (OR)

  • Lt. Chentney, AAAG
  • Lt. McDonald, AAQ
  • Col. Buist, ADC
  • Capt. Cunningham, ADC
  • Capt. Hill, ADC
  • Capt. Tupper, ADC
  • Lt. Contee, ADC

1st MD Battalion (M)

  • Lt. Col. G. H. Steuart
  • Unknown Officer (PC)

3rd TN

  • Col. J. C. Vaughn
    • Unknown Officer (PC)

10th VA

  • Col. S. B. Gibbons
    • Co. H – M. V. B. Kite (PC)
    • Co. K (M)

13th VA (Left at Manassas)

  • Col. A. P. Hill

Newtown Artillery (4 Guns)

  • Capt. George. A. Groves
    • Lt. R. F. Beckham

Not Brigaded

1st VA Cav

  • Col. J.E.B. Stuart (OR)
    • Co. C – Pvt. William Z. Mead (PC)

Thomas Artillery (Stanard’s Battery) (4 Guns)

  • Capt. P.B. Stanard


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