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PREPARING TO STORM MARYE'S HEIGHTS.
lery, supported by the flower of his infantry, under command of the haughty and supercilious Barksdale, who a few weeks later breathed his life away on the crimson fields of Gettysburg—abandoned by his own men, without a slave even to bring him a cup of cold water.
About one o'clock Sunday morning, a courier arrived at Gen. Sedgwick's headquarters, with orders from Gen. Hooker to storm the Heights, and pushing on beyond, join him at Chancellorsville. After crossing below Fredericksburg Saturday evening, Howe's Division had advanced up towards the city on the Bowling Green road, as far as Hazel Creek, the Thirty-third and Forty-ninth New York being deployed as skirmishers. When Hooker's orders arrived, Gen. Newton's Division passed to the right, and later, Howe's also moved further on, connecting with him. Brooks likewise came up from below, and formed on to Howe's left. The positions of the various Divisions became then as follows: Gen. Brooks, extreme left; Gen. Howe, centre; and Gen. Newton, right; connecting on with Newton's was Gibbon's Division of the Second Corps, extending above the city.
The Regiments for the assault were selected from Howe's, Newton's and Gibbon's commands. The following comprised all, or nearly all, the number: 31st, 33d, 36th, 432, 49th, 59th, 61st and 77th New York; 23d, 61st, 820, 93d, 98th, 122d, 127th and 139th Pennsylvania ; 7th, 19th and 20th Massachusetts; 5th Wisconsin, 6th and 7th Maine, 21st New Jersey and 1st Long Island.
DESCRIPTION OF THE HEIGHTS.
To Gen. Neill's Brigade was assigned the honor of leading the left one of the storming columns, and to the Thirty-third the honor of leading the Brigade. The reader will remember that the line of works to be taken was about one third of a mile in the rear of Fredericksburg, constructed on a natural bluff, extending above and below the city for some distance, and known as “Marye’s Heights." Beneath ran the famous stone-wall, forming the western boundary of the plain over which the charging columns must pass. Along the lower edge of this plateau, close by the reservoir, which separates it from the city, the troops were massed, lying on the ground to avoid the enemy's fire. The diagram on the opposite page represents the scene of action, with the relative positions occupied by the advance Regiments of the assaulting columns. :
Heavy artillery firing was kept up during the morning, between the rebel batteries and our own, planted along the edge of the river. The siege guns posted on Stafford Heights fired repeatedly on the enemy's works, doing good execution. One of the shells exploded a rebel caisson at the redoubt near the stone-wall, and killed ten horses. After blowing up the caisson it struck two directly behind, and hurled eight others down the steep precipice in the rear into the yawning chasm beneath. They presented a hideous spectacle as they lay at the bottom, dead and dying.
At length, as the City Hall clock struck eleven, came the order for the charge, and the lion-hearted