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eral Johnston was ordered to face about and hold the enemy in check. He formed a line of battle, threw out his skirmishers, and had one of the hottest fights in which the brigade was engaged on the skirmish line. The enemy was defeated and driven back.

It was on the 19th day of September, 1864, when Colonel Blacknall, of the 23rd, got his death wound, that Johnston's brigade won distinguished notice. General Bradley T. Johnson, a brilliant soldier and writer of Maryland, gave a graphic account of that day's battle through the newspapers. We give an extract from his report of Sheridan's advance on that day:

"By daylight, the 19th of September, a scared cavalryman of my own command, nearly rode over me as I lay asleep on the grass, and reported that the Yankees were advancing with a heavy force of infantry, artillery and cavalry up the Berryville road. * * * Johnston and I were responsible for keeping Sheridan out of Winchester, and protecting the Confederate line of retreat, and communication up the valley. In two minutes the command was mounted and moving at a trot across the open fields to the Berryville road and to Johnston's assistance. There was not a fence nor a tree nor a bush to obscure the view. We could see the crest of a hill, covered with a cloud of cavalry, and in front of them-500 yards in frontwas a thin grey line moving off in retreat solidly and in perfect coolness and self-possession. *** A regiment of cavalry would deploy into line and their bugles would sound the charge' and they'd swoop down on the thin grey line of North Carolina.' The instant the Yankee bugles sounded, North Carolina (Johnston's Brigade) would halt, face by the rear rank, wait until the horse got within 100 yards and then fire as deliberately and coolly as if firing. volleys on brigade drill. The cavalry would break and scamper back, and North Carolina would about face' and continue her march in retreat as solemnly and with as much dignity as marching in review. But we got there just in time, that is to engage cavalry with cavalry, and hold Sheridan in check until Johnston had got back to the rest of the infantry and formed line at right angles to the pike west of Winchester."

Being an entirely open country, everything that was going on could be seen for miles around; and Bradley Johnston says, in conclusion:

"There were 45,000 infantry and 10,000 cavalry in the open fields

against 8,500 infantry and 3,000 mounted gun-men. The thing began at daylight and kept on until dark, when flanked and worn out, Early retreated, to escape being surrounded.

"This is the story (given only in part here) of the thin grey line of North Carolina and the cavalry charge, a feat of arms before which that of Sir Colin Campbell fades into insignificance.”

The brigade had a severe fight at the Monocacy river, near Frederick City, in entering Maryland. Captain W. C. Wall, commanding Company F, was severely wounded in this fight. While General Gordon's Division crossed the river and attacked the line of battle in the flank, Johnston's Brigade was ordered to capture a blockhouse on the other side of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. A considerable number of the enemy were in the railroad cut and perfectly protected. The brigade charged across the railroad on the bridge, under a raking fire from a heavy battery on the other side of the river. Seeing it could not carry the block-house in that way, a company of soldiers passed under the culvert and opened fire on the enemy in the railroad cut from the flank, drew them out of the cut, and captured the block-house. When the first attempt to take the block-house, made by Colonel Blacknall with the 23d Regiment, had failed, by reason of an enfilade fire from a line of battle behind the railroad, which caused the regiment to fall back, General Johnston sent a message to Colonel Davis to take the 12th Regiment and capture it. Colonel Davis says:

"General J. was not in a very good humor and I was suffering (sick) so that I could hardly walk. However, I went forward to the ravine (not knowing the cause of the falling back of the 23d), and here halted and had picked men as videttes to reconnoitre and see all they could. Finding out about the line of battle behind the railroad, I sent General J. a message that if I advanced I would expose my men to an enfilade fire, and that if he would dislodge the line of battle behind the railroad I could take the house without loss of men. I never heard from General J. In the meantime, the fight was going on on the other side between Wallace (of Ben Hur fame) and Gordon. Three lines of battle engaged Gordon's one, and now Wallace begins to retreat. His men on our side then had to cross over quickly or be taken. I moved forward, and as we struck the bridge on our side the enemy was clearing it on the other side. The retreat and pursuit began, which continued for about two miles. We

then advanced as far as Blair's farm, in full view of Washington city, but soon deemed it wise to come back into Virginia."

Of course the operations in the valley under Early, already given, were subsequent to the action and events recorded immediately above. In the valley campaign, the brigade was transferred to Ramseur's division. At his death, General John Pegram succeeded to the command of the division. Almost simultaneous with the transfer of Sheridan from the valley to Grant's line near Petersburg, Early's command returned to the aid of Lee, at least the greater part of it.

Picket duty on Hatcher's Run, during the greater part of the winter, was onerous and severe. The 23rd took an active part in the fight at Hatcher's Run, Captain Peace, of Granville, being its commander. It was in this action that General John Pegram was killed, and Captain Frank Bennett, of Anson, formerly commander of the 23rd, lost an arm, at the time being in command of the brigade skirmishers. The division was afterwards commanded by General Walker. Johnston's was one of the attacking brigades that carried the enemy's line of breastworks at the battle of Hare's Hill, in which action General Johnston was so injured by a fall from the breastworks, a sprain of the ankle, that he was carried from the field.

On the withdrawal of the army from Petersburg, he followed in an ambulance. To the last, was he true to the high, soldierly instincts of his nature. Finding that the Federal cavalry were about to capture the whole line of wagons and ambulances, he got hold of a few stragglers, stopped an ammunition wagon, made every man get down and take a gun, and with this force he prevented the capture of the wagon and ambulance train. Further on in the great retreat the cavalry broke into the line, captured General Johnston's ambulance, and the rest including a portion of the wagon train. General Johnston cut off the insignia of his rank from his coat, and seizing a mule, the driver having fled, he mounted the warlike animal bareback, rode back behind where the outfit had been captured, organized a force of stragglers and recaptured the whole line. A cause that had such grit as that in its defence, deserved success. But we hasten to a conclusion, regretting the incompleteness of a task which has been both pleasing and sad.

At dawn on the 9th of April, the scene of a bloody midnight skirmish is passed. Gordon's command, of which the 23rd Regiment is a part, moves with spirit against a body of infantry which after a volley falls back precipitately, and once more the "rebel yell" of

victory cheers on our brave boys. But suddenly and strangely a halt is ordered, and the command marched from vigorous pursuit in the direction of the town. The whole army is massing in the vicinity of the courthouse-and see, there are Federal officers riding in the midst of Confederates, while on the neighboring hills and passing swiftly to the right, go hundreds of Federal cavalry, frantic with huzzas. Can it be? Ah, yes, the stacked arms, broken ranks, furled banners and weeping soldiers, proclaim the surrender of Lee's proud army.

Dr. R. J. Hicks, now of Warrenton, Virginia, who was a faithful surgeon to the 23rd, all through the war, says of the regiment:

"It did as much hard service, fought in as many battles, was as constant in the performance of duty as any other regiment in the army. And at Appomattox," says Dr. Hicks, "it surrendered about as many men as any other regiment in the army.'

By the Appomattox "parole lists," taken from the last volume of the Rebellion Records," it is shown that Johnston's brigade, at At that time, the

the surrender, numbered 463 men, rank and file. brigade was commanded by Colonel J. W. Lea.

We close this paper with the addition of the following statistics, taken from the source above indicated, with reference to North Carolina soldiers surrendered at Appomattox: Total, forty-two regiments and one battalion infantry; five regiments and one battalion cavalry, and five battalions artillery. That all these should have

numbered only 5,022 rank and file, at the surrender, says the Wilmington Messenger, shows the wear and tear North Carolina troops had sustained. First and last, by the muster rolls, these commands had contained over 100,000 men.

[From the Richmond, Va., Dispatch, June 6, 1897.]


A Short History of the Company-Its Roll.

Mr. J. Scott Moore contributes the following to the Rockbridge County News:

The Rockbridge Second Dragoons was organized in the lower end of Rockbridge, principally in the vicinity of Brownsburg, and was mustered into service April 21, 1861. The officers at that time were John R. McNutt, captain; Robert McChesney, first lieutenant; John. A. Gibson, second lieutenant; Dr. Z. J. Walker, third lieutenant. They were ordered to West Virginia (then Virginia), where Lieutenant McChesney was killed, probably the first man killed on Virginia soil. His tragic death occurred near St. George, Tucker county. Lieutenants Gibson and Walker were promoted to be first and second lieutenants by vacancy, and John Y. Anderson was made third lieutenant.

At the reorganization in 1862, after first year's service, John A. Gibson was made captain; James A. Strain, first lieutenant; James Archibald Lyle, second lieutenant, and James Lindsay, third lieutenant. The company was then doing service in Major William L. Jackson's battalion, composed of the following companies: Churchville Cavalry, from Augusta county; Charlotte Cavalry, from Charlotte county, and Rockbridge Second Dragoons, from Rockbridge county.

The 14th Virginia Cavalry was organized in 1862, and these three companies were assigned to it, the Dragoons becoming Company H. Captain John A. Gibson was made Lieutenant-Colonel, and promotions were made in the Dragoons as follows: James A. Strain, Captain; James Lindsay, First Lieutenant; William M. Sterrett, Second Lieutenant; Z. J. Culton, Third Lieutenant, who died in Salem while the regiment was in winter quarters near that town the winter of 1862-'63. A. B. Mackey was elected to fill Lieutenant Culton's place. Lieutenant Mackey was killed near Moorefield, Hardy county, on the retreat from the burning of Chambersburg in 1864. William N. Wilson was elected to supply the vacancy caused by his death. At the surrender the company was officered as follows: Cap

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