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Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/358

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350 Southern Historical Society Papers.

1863, at Gettysburg, in the famous charge of that day, Pickett's, Pettigrew's or Fender's ? We say Pickett's; North Carolinians say Pettigrew's. In order to understand the situation, and the quotations we shall make from the reports, it is necessary to state what forces constituted the "charging column," and the disposition and align- ment of these /orces. This column was composed of Pickett's Virginia Division on the right, and a part of Heth's Division (com- manded by Pettigrew) on ihete/t, with apart of Anderson's Division to guard the left flank of Pettigrew, and Willcox and Perry's Brigades of Anderson's Division the right flank of Pickett. Pick- ett's Division was called the " directing division," and was composed of Kemper's, Garnett's and Armistead's Brigades Kemper's on the right, Garnett's on the left, supported by Armistead in the rear and centre. Pettigrew's Division was composed of Archer's, Pet- tigrew's, Davis' and Brockenbrough's Brigades, supported by Scales' and Lane's Brigades of Pender's Division, then commanded by General Trimble, Scale's Brigade (commanded by Colonel Lowrence) being in rear of Archer's (commanded by Colonel Frye), and Lane's being on the left of Scales, supporting Pettigrew's Brigade (then commanded by Colonel Marshall). All of the reports refer to the magnificent way in which all of these troops advanced to the charge, and we shall institute no comparison between them ; they were all gallant and glorious Confederate soldiers, and we believe, the " best the world ever saw," as they have been pronounced by the present chief Magistrate of this country.

We come now to the reports. We quote first from that of Gen- eral Lee, written after he had received those of his subordinates, and based upon what was contained in them, as well as what he saw on the field; and his position on the field was such, that he could see the whole movement with distinctness. He says this in his offi- cial report:

11 General Longstreet ordered forward the column of attack, con- sisting of Pickett's and Heth's Divisions, in two lines, Pickett on the right. Wilcox's Brigade marched in rear of Pickett's right, to guard that flank, and Heth's (commanded by Pettigrew), was sup- ported by Lane's and Scale's Brigades, under General Trimble. The troops moved steadily on, under a heavy fire of musketry and artillery, the main attack being directed against the enemy's left- centre. His batteries opened as soon as they appeared. Our own having nearly exhausted their ammunition in the protracted cannon- ade that preceded the advance of the infantry, were unable to reply,