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not disposed to renew the battle except from behind his works. He determined to turn the position by marching by General Lee's right flank. On the night of the 7th, the movement to'wards Spottsylvania Court House commenced. General Warren, with the fifth corps, had the advance. General Burnside, with the Ninth Corps, brought up the rear. The first division immediately followed the fifth corps. The other divisions, with Colonel Marshall's provisional brigade, followed the sixth corps towards Chancellorsville, not gaining the road until daybreak of the 8th, on account of its occupancy by the sixth corps and its trains. The Corps moved through Chancellorsville and went into bivouac on the road beyond. The artillery reserve belonging to the Corps was ordered to join the artillery reserve of the Army of the Potomac, with which it remained until the 16th. The fourth division and cavalry covered the trains. Some skirmishing ensued during the march, whenever the enemy approached too near our columns, and always to his disadvantage.
The 9th passed with a more exciting train of events than the two preceding days. A very gallant affair was conducted by General Willcox with his division. He had been directed to move his command to the crossing of the Ny river on the Fredericksburg and Spottsylvania road. General Willcox was early on the march, and about a mile from the river his advance came in contact with the enemy's pickets. He quickly drove them to and across the river, and seized the bridge. Colonel Christ's brigade, with Roemer's and Twitchell's batteries of artillery, was immediately thrown across and posted on a little eminence about a quarter of a mile beyond. Colonel Christ was attacked while here by a considerable force of dismounted cavalry and a brigade of General Longstreet's corps. Colonel Hartranft sent over two regiments of his brigade to reënforce Colonel Christ. The enemy made repeated assaults upon our position, but was effectually repulsed at all points. Finding fruitless further attempts to dispute our progress, he finally retired, leaving about fifty prisoners and several of his
wounded in our hands. About noon, the first division came up, and the point was secured against any danger of loss. The third division-and especially Colonel Christ's brigade-won this position in a very creditable manner, but at a cost of one hundred and eighty-eight killed, wounded and missing. The second division was brought up in the course of the afternoon, but too late to take any part in the brisk engagement which Colonel Christ had so finely carried through. The fourth division was occupied in guarding the rear of the entire army. In the course of the day, the 2d Ohio cavalry was attacked, near Piney Branch Church, by a brigade of the enemy's cavalry, with two pieces of artillery. The 23d regiment United States. colored troops was sent to the assistance of the cavalry, and, with conspicuous courage, attacked and forced back the enemy. The cavalry pursued, and soon relieved the trains from the presence of a troublesome foe. Preparations were made by General Burnside for a further movement, to be undertaken on the following day.
The 9th had passed with considerable fighting by the other portions of the army. The enemy had divined the purpose of General Grant, and was not inclined to allow him to carry it out without opposition. General Lee, having the shorter lines, moved his army from the field of battle in the Wilderness to the defensive points around Spottsylvania Court House, and immediately crowned them with fortifications. General Grant found his progress once more stopped, and after one or two attempts to force the position, halted his army and prepared . for another bloody battle.
The fighting of the 8th and 9th, though not of so important character as on the preceding days in the Wilderness, was yet sufficiently serious to result in considerable loss. On the 8th, General Warren had a brisk engagement, in which were manifested the steadiness and courage of the fifth corps and its commander. On the 9th, the sixth corps met with an incalculable loss in the fall of its commander, the brave General Sedgwick. After the Ninth Corps had passed from his command to that
of General Smith, General Sedgwick had been assigned to the command of the sixth corps. In all the operations of the Army of the Potomac, subsequent to that time, he performed a distinguished part. When General Hooker moved upon Chancellorsville, it was General Sedgwick's duty to storm the heights of Fredericksburg, in order to create a diversion in favor of his chief. The work was most gallantly done, and the enemy's positions on Marye's hill and beyond were carried by a vigorous charge. General Hooker's failure let loose the greater portion of General Lee's army upon the sixth corps. But General Sedgwick was successful in extricating his command from its perilous position, though with severe loss, and crossed to the north bank of the Rappahannock above Falmouth.
In all the movements of the Army of the Potomac, General Sedgwick's corps was always found in the right place. So clear was his merit, that he was offered the command of the army itself. But with characteristic modesty, he declined the proffered honor. He preferred the more humble position of a corps commander, and in that capacity was remarkably faith-ful and trustworthy. By his presence of mind and coolness he saved the right wing of the army in the enemy's night attack of the 6th, and contributed very materially to the successes which were afterwards gained. He was killed while standing near an embrasure in one of our hastily erected earthworks. A bullet from the rifle of a sharpshooter of the enemy pierced his brain, and he fell dead. He was, without question, one of the bravest men and one of the finest soldiers to be found in all our armies. Modest, manly, skilful and courageous, without boastfulness, pretension or show of any sort, he has written for himself a bright and honorable name upon the records of his country, and impressed an ineffaceable image of his genuine manhood upon the hearts of all who love virtue, fidelity and heroism.
On the 10th, the fighting was of a very sanguinary character, but still without decisive results. "The enemy was obstinate," as General Grant found occasion to say, and was resolute in
disputing every inch of his ground. His lines extended around Spottsylvania Court House, between the Po and Ny rivers in a position well supported by breast works and protected by forest and marshy land. Our own lines were well brought up, the Ninth Corps holding the extreme left, General Willcox's division resting on the Ny, at the point which Colonel Christ had won. In the course of the afternoon, a determined attack was made by the corps, in conjunction with the Army of the Potomac. It resulted in placing our lines in immediate proximity with those of the enemy. General Potter's division attained a point within a short distance of the Court House. The advance was made in a very creditable manner, in the face of a heavy and destructive fire. After holding the position for a short time, General Potter was ordered to retire for nearly a mile, to a point selected by Lieutenant Colonel Comstock, under the direction of General Grant. The withdrawal was made against the remonstrance of General Burnside, and the mistake was afterwards seen-unfortunately not till it was too late to rectify it except by hard fighting.
But the Ninth Corps suffered a severe loss in the death of General Stevenson, the commander of the first division. He was killed early in the day by one of the enemy's riflemen, while near his headquarters. Born in Boston, on the 3d of February, 1836, Thomas Greely Stevenson was especially fortunate in his family, his education and his social position. He was the son of Hon. J. Thomas Stevenson, well known as an able lawyer and a sagacious man of affairs. He was educated in the best schools in Boston, and at an early age he entered the counting room of one of the most active merchants of that city. There, by his faithfulness in duty, his promptness and his generosity of disposition, he secured the entire confidence and love of his principal and the high esteem of the business community, and a brilliant commercial career opened before him. But when his country called him, he could not neglect her summons. The parting words of his father to himself and younger brother, when they left home for the field, well
appreciation in which his domestic virtues were held: "Be as good soldiers as you have been sons. Your country can ask no more than that of you, and God will bless you."
In the spring of 1861, he was orderly sergeant of the New England Guards, and upon the organization of the fourth battalion of Massachusetts infantry he was chosen Captain of one of its companies. On the 25th of April, the battalion was sent to garrison Fort Independence in Boston harbor, and on the 4th of May, Captain Stevenson was promoted to the rank of Major. In this position he was distinguished for an excellent faculty for discipline and organization which was subsequently of great benefit to him. On the 1st of August he received authority to raise and organize a regiment of Infantry for a term of three years, and on the 7th of September, he went into camp at Readville with twenty men. On the 9th of December, he left the State of Massachusetts with the 24th regiment-one of the finest and best drilled, organized, equipped, and disciplined body of troops that Massachusetts had yet sent to the war. His regiment was assigned to General Foster's brigade in the North Carolina expedition, and he soon gained the respect and friendship of his superior officers.
The conduct of the 24th regiment and its commander in North Carolina has already been made a matter of record. When Colonel Stevenson was assigned to the command of a brigade in April, 1862, the choice was unanimously approved by his companions in arms. General Burnside regarded him as one of his best officers. "He has shown great courage and skill in action," once wrote the General," and in organization and discipline he has no superior." General Foster was enthusiastic in his commendation. "He stands as high as any officer or soldier in the army of the United States," said he, "on the list of noble, loyal, and devoted men." On the 27th of December he was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General, and on the 14th of March, 1863, he was confirmed and commissioned to that grade. In February, 1863, he accom