Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/368

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360 Southern Historical Society Papers.

" It was indeed a field of honor, as well as a field of blood, and the sister States of Virginia and North Carolina have equal cause to weave chaplets of laurel and cypress" there, no one in Virginia would have just cause of complaint, and certainly none would ever have come from this committee on this point. But when her claim is set forth in the invidious (and, we think, unjust) form it is, we think it not only our right, but our duty to appeal to the record, and to set Virginia right from that record; and this is all we have tried

'to do.


We have already protracted this report too far to warrant us in investigating the grounds on which this claim is based by North Car- olina. Virginia was at Chickamauga, too, along with North Caro- lina. We have always understood that these troops did their duty on this field as well as those from any other State. This is all we claim for Virginia, and all that was claimed for North Carolina, until very recently. We will only remark, as to this belated claim, that we have read the full and detailed report of this great battle, written by the Commanding General, a native of North Carolina, and in it he nowhere refers to any specially meritorious services rendered by the few North Carolina regiments there.


The writer had been permanently disabled by wounds before Ap- pomattox, and therefore cannot speak, personally, of what occurred there, and there are no official reports to appeal to. From what we have heard of the surroundings there the scattered condition of the different commands, the desultory firing, and the confusion incident to that event we should think it difficult, if not impossible, to de- cide, with any degree of certainty, what troops were really entitled to the honor claimed here by North Carolina.

We do know, however, that this honor is claimed by troops from* several of the Southern States; and we have heard it asserted, with great plausibilty, that the last fighting was done by troops from Virginia. We cannot prolong this report to discuss the merits of these several claims, a discussion which would, in our opinion, be both fruitless and unsatisfactory.

In the Army of Northern Virginia nearly every Southern State was represented. The Confederate Secretary of War said of that army in his report of November 3, 1864, that it was one " in which every virtue of an army and the genius of consummate generalship