Well, there should be a video here; but unfortunately I have come over all shy :shy: ; although the mechanics of video editing are fairly easy, practice and experience does make a difference, and as I am a complete novice, I may or may not stick a video here at a later date...........
Headquarters Army of Northern Virginia, Near Gettysburg, PA., July 4, 1863
After the rear of the army had crossed the Potomac, the leading corps, under General Ewell, pushed on to Carlisle and York, passing through Chambersburg. The other two corps closed up at the latter place, and soon afterward intelligence was received that the army of General Hooker was advancing. Our whole force was directed to concentrate at Gettysburg, and the corps of Generals Ewell and A. P. Hill reached that place on the 1st July, the former advancing from Carlisle and the latter from Chambersburg.
The two leading divisions of these corps, upon reaching the vicinity of Gettysburg, found the enemy, and attacked him, driving him from the town, which was occupied by our troops. The enemy's loss was heavy, including more than 4,000 prisoners. He took up a strong position in rear of the town, which he immediately began to fortify, and where his re-enforcements joined him.
On the 2nd July, Longstreet's corps, with the exception of one division, having arrived, we attempted to dislodge the enemy, and, though we gained some ground, we were unable to get possession of his position. The next day, the third division of General Longstreet having come up, a more extensive attack was made. The works on the enemy's extreme right and left were taken, but his numbers were so great and his position so commanding, that our troops were compelled to relinquish their advantage and retire.
It is believed that the enemy suffered severely in these operations, but our own loss has not been light.
General Barksdale is killed. Generals Garnett and Armistead are missing, and it is feared that the former is killed and the latter wounded and a prisoner. Generals Pender and Trimble are wounded in the leg, General Hood in the arm, and General Heth slightly in the head. General Kemper, it is feared, is mortally wounded. Our losses embrace many other valuable officers and men.
General Wade Hampton was severely wounded in a different action in which the cavalry was engaged yesterday.
General Heth's 2nd Division wends it's way through the muddy ruts of the 24 foot wide Chambersburg pike; heading south-easterly towards the farmland town of Gettysburg.
The sun is starting to slowly rise illuminating a gently rising steam emanating from the rich crop growth on either side of the fenced roadway, making an almost ethereal and ghostly panorama. A precursor of the momentous events to come............................!
The men of Brig.Gen Archer's brigade are to the front, closely followed by Davis'4th and then Pegram's Artillery battalion of 24 guns. The rest of the division follows on. Colonel Fry deploys the Alabamy complement of Archer's brigade along a marshy creek, as enemy troops have been sighted on both sides of the pike. They are arrayed along a picket fence about 600 metres away.
Brig. Gen Pettigrew's reconnaisance of the previous day has already established that there are yankee cavalry patrols in the area. A rider is sent back by Brig.Gen Archer to inform General Heth, and await further orders.
General Harry Heth rides forward to join Brig. General Archer at the tree-line of Marsh Creek. He takes out a new pair of handsome binoculars, which were gifted to him on his last Birthday. He quickly scans the area of the risebefore him and then hands the glasses to Archer.
" What do you make of that ?......"
" Well , sir. They are dismounted yankee troopers to be sure;.... a regiments worth, I'd say ".could be more behind ......difficult to see with the slope.... I see no guns,....only bunched up horses."
" Very well..... post your Alabamans onto their left first,....they'll have some good tree cover,... and then send forward the Tennessee regiments to rake them from the front.......if they stay put, we'll flank them and hit them hard from the front. "
Brig.Gen Davis is moving his regiments onto a track heading east, allowing Pegram's guns to flow through.
Brig. Gen Archer's regiments have marched up the slope before them to find no trace of the yankee cavalry. Brig. Gen Davis marches his regiments along a track-way to cover the left flank of Archer's advance, as the terrain is becoming more open in aspect.
Brig.Gen Archer's brigade has formed up into marching columns and resumed their drive on Gettysburg. Another mile and a quarter of shoe tramping has seen no sign or sight of pork-bellied, yellow-belly blue-bellies. Archer has nonetheless given strict orders that there is to be no whistling, singing or yelling amongst his ranks.
The lead 14th Tennessee regiment has just passed the Herr Tavern, when a thick cloud of dust starts to dissipate, before them , revealing a whole host of yankee cavalry who are just as surprised to see the rebel infantry. The order to dismount is heard clearly by both sides. The yankees desperately snatch at their holsters to draw their pistols and try to keep their mounts steady as they pull out their short carbines. The order to form up is drowned out by the yell of the rebel infantry; leaving the troopers in pockets desparately firing at the grey tide rushing headlong into them.
Desperate shooting causes only 6 casualties among the rebels. Brig.Gen Archer leads 495 men of the 14th and 1st Tennessee regiments against less than a quarter of their number. The yankee troopers are forced back with heavy loss.
They seem to be protecting further yankee detachments, who have appeared out of nowhere to use the pike for a hasty exit. They are given a fond farewell by the 13th Alabama who let loose a devastating volley into their backs, dropping 13 troopers, 5 horses and one chipmunk.
The previously meleed enemy troopers have routed to the south-east. Further up the pike , another detachment of enemy troopers are again attempting to harass Archer's infantry. The 7th Tennessee and 13th Alabama have moved up to rake the yankees line before the 13th Alabama and 14th Tennessee again throw back the dismounted yankees amongst their mounted brethren.
The rebels have not run out of momentum and crash into the mounted and dismounted yankees. Brig>Gen Archer leads from the front as the 7th Tennessee and 13th Alabama overwhelm the enemy force. Those on horses consider themselves blessed, as the entire dismounted yankee detachment is destroyed to a man.
General Heth has ordered a group of Pegram's guns to unlimber beside the Herr Tavern; their range may keep the enemy cavalry at a distance and the noise boosts the spirits of the men anyhow........
Marye's 4 guns of the Fredericksburg Virginia artillery let rip with a couple of volleys of shell. Their target being a sizeable group of enemy cavalry moving fast before the McPherson house. Two blasts kill 7 troopers and another takes out the right window frame of the house. Old man McPherson won't be happy about that, as he only just finished painting it, the previous week, and good wood and paint don't come cheap.............!
The yankee troopers alao come under fire from Archer's advancing infantry. Brig.Gen Davis' regiments have made it to the railway cut, 2 deploying into line, in case there are any yankees in the trees before them.
On approaching the McPherson house, the 7th and 14th Tennessee regiments are shot at by enemy troopers who have decided that the McPherson house and " crick " are a good place to hole up. They are encouraged in this stance by the presence of a section of friendly guns, just behind them, who target the 13th Alabama as soon as they are seen. The yankee gunners must be rookies , as their shots are very poor , causing minimum casualties at such close range. The dismounted yankee troopers are again treated to southern bayonets and are barely holding.
Major Buchanan leads the 1st Tennessee regiment up to the south of the McPherson house. His 280 men find a group of yankees still firing from the apple trees and so make a charge headlong into them, finishing them off. The enemy guns have moved off quickly, as have the troopers near the wooden bridge across the " crick ".
Suddenly; all of Hell has broken loose........Brig. Gen Archer's brigade on reaching and passing a small rise behind the McPherson house, find themselves under a heavy and persistent fire coming from the farmhose and orchard to their front. The 14th Tennessee has shell blasts thick and fast, dispersing their ranks.
Brig Gen Davis' brigade on clearing the woods to the left of Archer, walk straight into an artillery bombardment. Casualties are light, as the enemy gunners seem to be taken by surprise.
General Heth is surprised too, by the sound of gun blasts to his front. A hurried order get's the rebel reserve infantry brigades off the turnpike, so that some support guns can reach Archer.
Brig.Gen Archer's 3 regiments on and south of the Chambesrburg pike are still involved in a brisk fire-fight with the enemy. General Heth is personally supervising the deployment of 4 rebel guns on the McPherson rise. As he views the firefight, his attention is caught by the sudden slumping forward of Brig. Gen Archer on his horse. He has been hit in the upper chest by a stray yankee bullet. From the self-same position , he scans to the left and can make out the fleeing of the 14th Tennessee regiment from it's forward position on the pike. Having endured the fire from 3 separate yankee units, their morale dissolved. His countenance does not become any lighter as he further scans to the left and can just about see Brig.Gen Davis'infantry lines being bombarded by enemy blasts, and withdrawing out of view back to the tree-line. He takes out a crumpled handkerchief and wipes the back of his neck.
He motions an adjutant forward,....." Give the order to Colonel Brockenbrough to post his Virginians to the left of these guns, deploy into battle-lines and be advised of attacking the enemy in the houses by the pike, on my direction ! ". " Is that clear ? " . " Yes , Sir ! , Crystaaaaal ! ". The adjutant rides off, as Harry Heth slowly replaces the handkerchief in his jacket pocket and straightens his back on his horse.
Two 12 ponder Howitzers and two Napoleon guns open up on the enemy line in front of them. The noise is added too by the yankee guns to the north-west.
Brig.Gen Davis rides behind a line of his confederates, snucked up close behind the trees, and can be clearly heard to say; " Damn my eyes if those are state militia ! " as he watches lines of yankee infantry slip behind a dip , a mere 400 metres away. The object of his attention is the brigade of Meredith; the famed " Iron Brigade "; some of the best troops in Meade's army and known for their ferocity and fighting zeal from the battle of Antietam. Unless ordered otherwise, Davis is quite happy to meet the yankees, but not on open ground. He informs Heth of the hanging flanks to his left and right. He shuffles his hand into his jacket pocket and remembers that he threw away his handkerchief 2 days earlier.............
Colonel Fry takes over command of the 3rd brigade. General Dorsey Pender rides along the pike and meets up with Heth, to inform him that his light division is up.
Rebel guns, now numbering eight barrels, intensify their fire on the yankee line. The Virginia brigade moves forward at a steady pace, while Archer's regiments continue to pepper the yankees, to keep their attention focused on them.
The situation in the Shead woods becomes more tense, as the 2nd Mississippi break and run after only discharging two volleys. As they ran out of the western fringe of the wood; the 14th Tennessee regimental commander, Capt. Phillips ordered an about turn, fully expecting the yankees to appear in close chase.
Added to this misfortune, Brig.Gen Davis has had to pull back the 42nd Mississippi for lack of cartidges. This leaves the 55th Mississippi as the only forward bulwark against the yankee attack.
Colonel Brockenbrough leads the 2nd Virginia brigade down the McPherson rise and over a small " crick ". Yankee bullets start to whistle past eliciting the odd thud and groan. The lead regiments quicken their step, in response. Rebel gun shells tear up the ground and knock through low , stone walls, sending shattering segments into those yankees who are determined to fire back.
After moving another 80 metres, the Virginians split into two attack formations. Colonel Brockenbrough rushes the yankees defending the Thomson house, with the 40th and 47th Virginia. The yankees put up a stout defence but are pushed back by larger rebel numbers. The 22nd and 55th Virginia decide to hold back with an assault for the moment, as there are more yankees than expected facing them in the Thomson apple orchard.
" Yoose spose ta be shootin at the dam yanky,... Elijah !" . " I is hungry;...... dem juicy apple jus a waitin to be eatin.... ! ". " That be lootin,... Elijah ! "...... " IT AIN'T LooTIN ! , if theyse be on the earth..;No, sir... " IT AIN'T LOOTIN !... fer dem daaaam worms ta eat em....... !".
The 13th Alabama regiment has routed from Colonel Fry's command as dominant yankee fire controls the area before the orchards.
Dorsey Pender's light division begins to deploy north and south of the pike; awaiting the imminent arrival Of Corps Commander, General Hill.
General Powell- Hill arrives at the front and is immediately greeted by Generals Pender and Heth. " A thunderous set too, gentlemen; I was of the belief that the weather was a changin ! " ;..... " It seems you have stirred up a hornet's nest, Henry ! What's to do ? ". General Heth appraises Hill of the situation thus far; especially of the misfounded contention that there were only insignificant yankee cavalry units within the area. While Hill strokes his beard slowly and pats his horses neck, Heth continues.; " It is my belief , Sir,... that there is a federal division in and within close proximity of the town; a good part of which I am engaged against !. General Hill then ponders a while, again patting his horse nonchalantly, " I am partial to the intelligence gathered by General Lee,Sir, which could not see any of the federal army in greater force than a corps within 12 miles of Gettysburg. But I am also aware of the advisement of General Lee to not bring on a full engagement for this day, where our army is yet to concentrate........,.so I say to you, Sir, that I cannot commit Pender's Division to the fray, under General Lee's advisement, until the rest of the Corps is up. You may use your men to continue probing the enemy as you see fit......!".
The 22nd and 55th Virginia regiments rush southwards into the yankee ranks, which have been somewhat thinned by cannon fire and some routing. Three yankee cavalry detachments have given up the ghost of defending the western outskirts of Gettysburg, mounted their mares and sped hell for leather towards the Hagerstown road. Regular yankee infantry regiments have had to turn and move northwards to fill the gap in the line before the Virginians advance.
In the Shead woods, north of the pike , Brig.Gen Davis , personally in command of the 42nd Mississippi has managed to beat back an attack by two regiments of the Iron Brigade.( Unky, President Davis will be pleased with his Neffy, especially as his men have only one or two cartridges apiece to fight with.)
General heth has already ordered Brig.gen Pettigrew's 1st Brigade to move into the Herbst woods and begin an attack on the weakened federal left flank.
Brig.Gen Pettigrew's regiments deploy into line with forward skirmishers and advance over the open ground to the southern orchards. Upon leaving the tree-line ; they have already suffered the bombardment of yankee shells from batteries positioned to the south-east. ( opportunity fire), inflicting a couple of casualties. More noise, than effect.Brig Gen. Pettigrew waves his sword around his head with wild abandon as his wait for some activity has been the longest.
Colonel Fry, now in command of the 3rd Brigade is of less good cheer, as he currently has command of a single regiment;the 7th Tennessee, who are almost down to two thirds of their original strength. The rest of the brigade is scattered to Kingdom come- the 14th Tennesee west of the Shead woods - the 5th Alabama Battalion fighting with Brig. Gen Davis - the 1st Tennessee and 13th Alabama just reformed , making their way back to the Herbst woods.
The 22nd and 55th Virginia try to press the enemy again but are thrown back with greater loss.
Heth's first Brigade under Pettigrew has crossed the open ground to a picket fence surrounding the apple orchards. They stop and stand at a goodly range to unleash a torrent of bullets towards the thinned yankee presence. Yankees drop by the dozen at every volley but continue to fire back with almost equal temper. The Virginians in the orchard are enthused by this sudden appearance of friendly fire to their right and begin to scream with the banshees of Hell, as they push forward to oust the stubborn yankees from the orchard trees. Another yankee cavalry detachment has taken to their horses and bolted southwards.
" Looky likes yee gets te be eatin all dem apples, ...Elijah ! Crunch ! Crunch !, chew, chew. " Quit yer jawing,... homesteader,.... ma belly's been a grumblin n'achin somethin fierce sinse all that, chew..... daaaaam marchin weese bin a doin since sun-up.... Cruuuuuuunch ! ".
Brig.Gen Pettigrew's brigade has launched a determined charge with it's two central regiments. The enemy has been forced to withdraw; especially as they are running out of bullets. The yankee cavalry are not reforming fast enough, leaving the enemy's position wide open for exploitation. However, the yankees are still shelling Pettigrew's men and have had the audacity to try and flank his right. General Heth has noted this fresh onslaught and quickly sent orders to Colonel Fry, to, ".... with the greatest urgency, engage the enemy line moving up against Pettigrew's right, along the ridge ! Colonel Fry leaves a green Lieutenant to convey orders to the 13th Alabama to follow on, while he takes his two available Tennessee regiments, numbering 416 souls, to the south.
The Virginians around the Thomson House are still fighting, but are disrupted; the 22nd Virginia are down to 99men and have withdrawn to de-fatigue.
Pegram's artillery on the rise are continuously shelling the area east of the Thomson house. Willie Pegram has sent some gun sections to cross the Willoughby run, who were to tangle with the yankee guns on the Seminary ridge, but are now in a good position to catch the fresh yankee infantry before them, who are completely unaware of their position. they will be no doubt joined by more guns to, " give the daaam yankees what fer ! ".
The battle in the Shead woods shows no sign of advantage to either side. Brig. Gen Davis' pinning of most of the federal's artillery and the Iron brigade is comfort enough for Heth.
Unbeknownst to General Heth, for the moment; the 2nd Corps, commanded By Ewell is approaching the northern outskirts of Gettysburg , roughly parallel to the Carlisle road. Fortunately for General Heth, a large amount of yankees have had to be deployed to stop Ewell rather than push Heth back. They have rushed forward through the town of Gettysburg and have had hardly enough time to deploy properly into battle-lines, before being fired upon by the regiments of Iverson's brigade. Lt. Gen Ewell has already heard the noise of battle from the south for the last 3 hours, but was hoping to bear down on the flank and rear of those enemy troops facing the 3rd Corps. This sudden onrush of yankees should easily be pushed aside. General Rodes, commanding the 3rd division of Ewell's Corps, sends an adjutant to feel for the rebel 3rd Corps left, which should be no more than 2 miles distant............
Colonel Fry has moved his Tennessee regiments to the edge of the eastern Herbst woods. His men surprise the enemy with their fire, which is added too by the fire from the 13th Alabama further up the tree-line. The yankees on the ridge are also being targetted by the re-alignment of the 26th North Carolina regiment and the flank fire of 2 sections of Pegram's guns who blast away enthusiastically.
Brig. Gen Pettigrew and Colonel Brockenbrough's brigades are stalled by the enemy lines, supported by their guns. In the Shead woods; Brig.Gen Davis has taken increasing loss due to accurate enemy fire within the last twenty minutes, setting off a panic within his ranks, which led to a wholesale rout of everyone, leaving the 14th Tennessee to hold back the Iron brigade on it's own.
They are however unaware of their perilous situation.
General Heth rides in haste to General Dorsey Pender's position. " My compliments Sir,..... I beg to say, that the situation on my left has taken a turn for the worse,......leaving my gun-line exposed.... ! He is sharply interrupted by General Pender, who points his arm ahead and say's,... " There is my answer, Sir,..... as I have been a ready witness of your discomfiture....... ! Colonel Perrin is advancing his regiments to protect the guns and help bring out the wounded,...... a wry smile is given, which Heth readily acknowledges with a slow nod of his head,... " General Hill would approve, of that, ........I am certain.! "
Capt. Pegram's guns supporting Colonel Fry have managed to rout a yankee unit in the Herbst orchard and continue their good work by turning to fire against enemy units marching along the Hagerstown road.
The 14th Tennessee let out a loud cheer as they are suddenly enveloped from the rear by grey-clad uniforms and popping of fire-arms.
Colonel Abner Perrin's regiments give the Iron brigade a sustained and withering fire, as volley after volley shreds tree bark, branches and yankee uniforms. Further south, Colonel Brockenbrough's Virginians have lost impetus; two of the smaller units having to withdraw. Pettigrew's Brigade has become somewhat disjointed in their attack but are willing and steadfast. A charge by the 47th North Carolina has pushed back an enemy unit off the Hagerstown road. The 52nd North Carolina have bravely stepped forward to press the yankee line but have unfortunately walked into a wall of yankee units who were obscured by buildings and a small rise. The 26th North Carolina move south and rip up a enemy formation of lesser number. Pettigrew's position is slowly becoming perilous. Cap.t Pegram positions more guns on the edge of the Herbst woods for support.
Lt.General Ewell watches eagerly to his front as his guns pound the yankee lines. Their flanks seem to be weak and they have no gun support as yet. With 5 Brigades available; he is confident that the yankee line can be enveloped. A rider from General Jubal Early increases his expectation; as the enemy will also be facing Early's formations coming like demons from Hades down the Harrisburg Road. He quickly scribbles his position and intentions and sends word to Hill's command post. The rider speeds off as Dick Ewell comments to those around him; " By God Gentlemen, I do believe that providence is on our side this day....... the enemy seem to be lining up for their own destruction.....!"
General Lee arrives at the front and is immediately assailed by a host of information. He dismounts and sits on a camp chair to read the situation reports. He then listens to verbal reports from Hill, Heth and Pender. It is now obvious that the head of Meade'd Army of the Potomac has arrived in and around Gettysburg. He makes a calculated guess that an enemy Corps is engaged before him, with the possibility that a second is in close proximity. He ponders the efficacy of the attack so far, whereupon a rider from Ewell's Corps arrives to announce that General Rodes' Division is about to engage federal formations to the north of the town of Gettysburg. Lee stands up and strains his ears to the north-east and responds; " Glory be ,.......... I can hear the guns ! ". General Dorsey Pender is summoned forward......" As Perrin's Brigade have joined the fight,......I do believe that your men should dispose themselves as to keep,.... as many federal forces before us,......you may deploy your division for the attack, Sir ! "
Pegram's guns blast away, keeping the yankees afeared of moving up the McPherson ridge.Colonel Brockenbrough's position in the western ouskirts of Gettysburg has collapsed. the gallant Virginians have routed or moved back, having taken a punishing loss level. Brig.Gen Pettigrew watches in dismay as the 52nd Carolina suffer a hail of shell and bullets, breaking up and then turning to their heels. General Heth sends an order for Pettigrew to withdraw in good order......., his position no longer tenable.
Doles' Brigade have the advantage against lighter opposition. The yankee left flank is about to be compromised, as is the right; Daniel's Brigade is forming up to attack and take the Blotcher's Knoll. Some enemy batteries are starting to deploy, mostly near the Carlisle road. Brig.Gen Ramseur's Brigade is deploying in the centre. General Ewell is waiting for rebel gun fire to soften up the yankees a bit.... two enemy unita have already broken, while Jubal Early's advance cavalry seem to be more numerous for their yankee counterparts to withstand; who readily flee down the Harrisburg road.
Brig.Gen James Lane's brigade and Brig.Gen Thomas' Georgia brigade moves southwards into the Herbst woods. They will launch an attack to clear the southern part of McPherson's ridge. Pegram's guns intensify their bombardment to rattle the nerves of the yankee defenders. The enemy have lost two cannon pieces in quick succession to this energetic display. Brig.Gen Pettigrew's brigade slowly withdraws from it's exposed position, constantly under enemy fire. Fighting in the Shead woods becomes more ferocious as Brig.Gen Perrin hurls two of his regiments on a weakened Wisconsin regiment, who hold for a time, but with grievous loss.
The Oak Ridge hill has been firmly secured by Doles' brigade, while on the other flank, Brig.Gen Daniel's regiments have come out of the tree lined dip before their intended yankee position based on a Knoll. The defenders were surprised but gave a good account of themselves.General Rodes' attack on the centre will soon begin.
Brig.Gen Lane's brigade moves up to the Herbst House, protected from federal fire by lower ground. To his left, Brig. Gen Thomas' brigade is posted on the edge of the woods and will shortly deploy into battle lines. General Pender sends Brig.Gen Scales brigade to support the right flank of Colonel Perin. Since Heth's 3rd Brigade under Colonel Fry are still combat worthy, they will aid Lane's attack on the yankee positions before them, as well as blocking enemy usage of the Hagerstown road. The remaining brigades of Heth's division are reforming and de-fatiguing.
General Lee is informed that General Anderson's division is just over an hours march away, completing the availability of the entire 3rd Army Corps. Concentration of the rebel army is out-pacing that of the Army of the Potomac. Lee urges Ewell,......." to throw back the federals before you with the utmost vigor.....I contend, Sir, that this day's outcome will prove itself of inestimable value to our cause...! "
Rebel guns shell the yankee defenders north of Gettysburg, ripping mercilessly through tightly packed ranks. General Rodes' entire division is becoming engaged. The enemy already showing signs of uneasiness as the flight of blue uniforms increases . Mounted yankee officers shout themselves hoarse in beguiling their men to hold steady. Those green to battle have their ears assailed by desperate shouting, groans of wounded , thumping of the ground as bodies drop, whistling of bullets and shell around them, click-clacking of rifles, and in between, an unholy screeching by the enemy, which slowly grows louder as the minites pass. The yankee defence has stiffened on their right flank by the arrival of fresh fodder, but will soon be assailed by Gordon's brigade and the rest of Jubal Early's division.
I have put amendment screens in the Chancellorsville Amendments thread - silly things like Corps designations on OOB pictures and divisional number designations I forgot to put in - intended for purists and lazy sloth's.....
Big.Gen Pettigrew, piqued at receiving orders to withdraw, still continues the fight from cover of trees in the centre of the field. General Pender watches expectantly from the rear of the Shead woods as his brigades move to battle. He can clearly see Scales' brigade moving into the outlying buildings below the wood. He fidgets around on his horse, unable to find a comfortable seating, until his gaze is suddenly fixed southwards. He can now readily see and hear the discharge of battle as Lane's brigade closes with the enemy; but where is Thomas ?
Colonel Abner Perrin's men unleash a heavy fire on the enemy , who being in the open , are easy targets. They seem reluctant to close. An extremely lucky shot from a yankee battery on the Hagerstown road has disabled one of Pegram's guns.
All five of Rodes' brigades slowly push forward; the exchange of fire surprisingly elicits minor casualties on both sides. The first bayonet charge has occurred on the left, with Colonel O'Neal taking the McLean House with the 3rd Alabama. The Third and Second Corps are now linked up. Lt. Gen Ewell is confident that putting pressure on the entire federal defensive line will not allow a sealing of any holes opened up by fighting or routing. " Damnation ! ,.....if they will but hold;...... we'll round them up like steers,........to be sure,.....this day ! "
Lane's brigade give the yankees....." what fer ", as volleys erupt in brutal harmony. Thomas' regiments emerge from the trees and line up with the left of Lane's men. The enemy position on Seminary ridge looks more spartan than before, as a number of yankee units have routed. This due to minor bombardment, ( interestingly effective ), and perhaps due to the sight of new formations of grey about to press forward against them. Scales' brigade suffers some loss from enemy guns but should have the advantage of numbers and tired opposition.
Close quarter shooting now becomes the norm for Ewell's attack. The yankee left flank is becoming more compromised while their right desperately tries to fend off ever increasing fire-power from the rebels of Gordon's brigade.
Brig Gen. Lane's regiments push back the union line. Two bayonet charges sustain heavy casualties but silence an enemy gun section, too slow in their retreat. Brig.Gen Thomas' men have crossed the eastern section of the Willoughby run stream and are immediately set upon by gun blasts and fire from the lines before and to the right of their advance. Counter -battery fire from rebel guns on the rise is making little headway in silencing the yankee guns on Seminary ridge.Colonel Perrin's South Carolinians make good their tree cover to harass the yankee line on lower ground , who are pinned and unable to contest with Scale's assault in the western houses. An adjutant rides up to General Anderson to inform him that he is ordered by Lee to post his division behind and to the right of Conel Fry's brigade, to await further instruction.
Doles and O'Neals brigades push forward under a relentless fusillade of bullets. The situation is no different before Ramseur and Iverson's attack. The yankee defenders have created a blue wall of resistance which the grey waves foam and eddy at with little appreciable result. General Rodes watches as tiny pockets of men fall and crawl or stumble back out of line; the numbers wounded increasing over the minutes. Fighting before the Almshouse shows no advantage to either side.
An unexpected federal cavalry charge has managed to disrupt the rebel advance along McPherson's ridge. The attack was led by Colonel John Buford, who lined up the 8th Illinois and 8th New York regiments of Gamble's brigade at a fair distance. Although not a complete surprise; the rebel defenders were locked in indecision as to their response. With half the men still reloading, only 2 enemy troopers were felled before they crashed into one of Colonel Fry's regiments. The 1st Tennessee Provisional regiment only had 206 combatants facing 676 yankee troopers. The result was quick and decisive, leaving the rebel defenders with no choice but to hastily retire to a nearby farmhouse and outbuildings for some degree of sanctuary. There, being joined by a sister regiment for added support. Brig.Gen Lane had not noted this untimely incursion on his flank, being totally transfixed with the fighting to his front. However, the southern-most regiment, the 7th North Carolina under the command of Captain Turner automatically turned to face the threat. Generals Lee and Hil ride southwards into the woods to determine the state of Heth's broken brigades.
Thomas' attack has become somewhat disjointed and is outpacing Lane's men by a fair distance, but he is right on the flank of Scales', who has next to no opposition visibly left before him. Colonel Perrin has moved his men out of the Shead woods to rip fire into the yankees on lower ground, who seem to be tiring of the affair, as their almost muted response shows.
The enemy before Rodes' attack still hold a serviceable defensive line, setting up two defensive lines on their left. The one anchored behind a stream possibly being a fall back position; these yankees are not as dumb as they look ?...... Jubal Early's brigades are spreading further south along the treeline and will increase the pressure on the yankee right. The rebel guns have little to fire upon or support for the moment.
Jenkin's cavalry brigade has arrived along the Carlisle road and will no doubt be used in mass to run down any yankee break in positionin General Ewell seems unconcerned with Rodes' method of attack, for the moment. His current position not having the panoramic view that Rodes can easily view. Brig.Gen Doles' is pleased to see the arrival of Poague's artillery battalion, who hurriedly move up to the edge of the rise which he is currently clearing of yankees.
The yankee cavalry have withdrawn southwards while the main federal line has gone back to before the Seminary ridge. Lane's regiments have crossed the eastern section of the Willoughby stream. Thomas' brigade is locked in a stiff fight with yankees defending south of the Lutheran Seminary.They have some small support from Pegram's guns; albeit, when they have correct range, ( apparently, you can shoot your own guys ). A stubborn enemy unit in the houses before Scales' advance still refuses to be dislodged and pull back. Colonel Perrin's brigade continues to fire into the formations before him as they advance slowly.
Hoke's brigade joins the fight alongside Gordon's; a small unit of enemy infantry is cut down to the last man, a sure testament to the fervent resistance on this northern flank. Capt. Poague's guns are quickly unlimbering, as he readily can see the yankee line exposed and ripe for punishment; at less than 600 metres. This added to Jones' battery in and around Blotchers Knoll on the east side, should help break up the yankee defence. Rodes' divisional artillery move forward to aid the rebel front line. Loses grow steadily for both sides.
Doles' brigade has linked up with Colonel Perrin's men. Rebel artillery start to pound the yankee line on both flanks.and cannot fail to miss their targets. This extra bombardment should break the enemy defence and open up some holes. Smith's Virginians put the fear of God into their opponents with their whooping and wailing...............