Herewith I send a report of the killed, wounded, and missing of my command.*
All of which is respectfully submitted.
I have the honor to be, respectfully, your obedient servant,
A. L. CHETLAIN,
Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Twelfth Illinois Volunteers.
Colonel JOHN MCARTHUR,
Commanding First Brigade, Second Division.
Numbers 23. Report of Colonel Isaac C. Pugh, Forty-first Illinois Infantry.
HDQRS. FORTY-FIRST REGIMENT ILLINOIS VOLUNTEERS,
Fort Donelson, Tenn., February 19, 1862.
SIR: In accordance with an order issued from headquarters, requiring commandants of regiments to report their operations upon the field of battle during the investment of Fort Donelson by our troops, I herewith transmit the following:
I received an order late Friday, February 14, to move out from my encampment of that day to the extreme right line of our forces, which order I obeyed under the guidance of Major Mudd. My regiment arrived at the designated encampment about sundown on Friday evening. After some instructions from Colonel McArthur, commanding brigade, I hastily examined the ground, but it was too late to form any correct idea of the ground. I threw out my picket guard. My regiment encamped at the foot of the hill. The next morning (Saturday), just at daylight, one of my picket guard came in and informed me the enemy were advancing in strong force. I immediately ordered out two companies as skirmishers, but before they could reach the woods through the open field in front they were fired upon by the enemy. I instantly formed my command in line of battle just under the crest of the hill. A heavy volley was then fired upon my regiment. I ordered a charge upon the enemy, which was obeyed with alacrity, when the enemy retreated from behind the fence on the opposite side of the field and from their ambush in the timber on my right to their rifle pits, a distance of half a mile. As this movement (the charge) had not been general on the part of our troops, I halted my command on the field, when the enemy returned with renewed force and recommenced the conflict. I now discovered he was extending his lines and outflanking me on the right. I then moved my command by the right flank so as to more fully occupy the woods and give room for the Ninth Illinois Regiment to form on my left in battle line.
At this juncture Colonel Oglesby, commanding brigade, arrived, and approved my entire action when he learned that during all this time I had acted upon my own responsibility. Colonel McArthur approved, and gave me some orders as to future movements, and had the Twelfth Illinois Regiment to form in my rear, which they occupied till my command, pressed by an overwhelming force and exposed to a most terrible fire, retired. My right flank passed through the ranks of the Twelfth Illinois Regiment, which movement was made in good order, excepting some little confusion on my right, which was hardest pressed by the
* See p. 168.