Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The History of South Carolina, From Its First European Discovery to Its Erection into a Republic >> Chapter XX >> Page 214

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Page 214

History | S. Babcock & Co. | 1840
towards deciding the issue of the day. The fall of two
of the best American officers in the beginning of the
fight, was the cause of a most unfortunate disorder which
followed among the troops.
The front of Greene's army presented his whole force.
Two Virginia regiments, under general Huger, were posted
on the right of the road; two Maryland, under colonel
Williams, on the left. The first Virginia, under lieutenant
colonel Campbell, was on the right of the whole ; the
second Maryland, under lieutenant colonel Ford, on the
left. The second Virginia, under lieutenant colonel
Hawes, and the first Maryland, commanded by colonel
Gunby, formed the centre. Greene, conjecturing that the
enemy knew nothing of his having artillery�which- had
reached him only a little time before the action�had
closed the two centre regiments before it, so that it was
completely masked. The effect may well be imagined,
when these two regiments, suddenly retiring from the
centre, left them free to vomit their showers of grape
upon the dense ranks of the enemy preparing for the
charge. The confusion and dismay were conspicuous.
The squadrons sank, and wheeled, and fled, beneath the
terrible discharge ; and nothing more seemed to be neces-
sary than to give the command, to close upon their flanks
with the regiments right and left and cut them off from
escape. The order was given."Let the cavalry make
for their rear ; colonel Campbell will wheel upon their
left ; colonel Ford upon their right ; the whole centre
will charge�charge with trailed arms."
Such were the commands of Greene, which his aids
rushed to convey to the several captains. The roll of