Saturday, July 12, 2008

Jackson Describe the Battle of First Manassas

In a letter to his wife, Anna, Jackson describes the battle.

Manassas, July 23, 1861

My Precious Pet,

Yesterday we fought a great battle and gained a great victory, for which all the glory is due to God alone. Although under a heavy fire for several continuous hours, I received only one wound, the breaking of the longest finger of my left hand; but the doctor says the finger can be saved. It was broken about midway between the hand and knuckle, the ball passing on the side next the fore finger. Had it struck the centre, I should have lost the finger. My horse was wounded, but not killed. Your coat got an ugly wound near the hip, but my servant, who is very handy, has so far repaired it that it doesn't show very much. My preservation was entirely due, as was the glorious victory, to our God, to whom be all honor, praise and glory. The battle was the hardest that I have been in, but not near so hot in its fire. I commanded the centre more particularly, though one of my regiment extended to the right for some distance. There were other commanders on my right and left. Whilst great credit is due to other parts of our gallant army, God made my brigade more instrumental than any other in repulsing the main attack. This is for your information only -- say nothing about it. Let others speak praise, not myself.