Numbers 45. Report of Colonel Amory K. Johnson, Twenty-eighth Illinois Infantry.
HDQRS. TWENTY-EIGHTH REGIMENT ILLINOIS VOLS.
Pittsburg, Tenn., April 9, 1862.
SIR: I would respectfully report the following as the part borne by my command during the late engagements of the 6th and 7th instant:
On the morning of the 6th,with an effective force of 558 rank and file, I was ordered to form the left center of the First Brigade, which brigade advanced about a mile to the front of the encampment and formed in line of battle, skirting the south side of the peach-orchard field. This position was maintained for some time, with but little loss or firing, when we were ordered to change position, forming line in the rear of the farm-house, and to support Mann's battery on our right and one section of artillery on our left. This position was maintained for several hours under constant and heavy firing from the enemy's infantry and artillery. Here we suffered severely, having my major, B. C. Gillam, and adjutant, J. B. T. Mead, wounded, besides 5 line officers and 100 men killed and wounded.
The force on our right and left being forced to retire, I received orders to fall back to a more protected position to the woods on the north side of the field, which was done in good order. This position we maintained until all support on either flank again gave way. I again, under orders, fell back some 300 paces to the south side of the small field and on the right of the road and of Mann's battery. Here my command suffered severely, losing several officers and quite a number of men. Again, being flanked on the left, I fell back under a murderous cross-fire, passing through the open field. Here Lieutenant-Colonel Killpatrick fell, with a number of the rank and file. Maintaining good order, I fell back to the front of the siege pieces, when I was ordered to take position in the main line, in the rear of the line of guns. Here with slight changes we rested for the night.
On the morning of the 7th the Fourth Division was ordered to move to the right. On arriving near General McClernand's lines I was ordered to form the Twenty-eighth on the left of his advance column and to advance on the enemy, who had slowly driven our right for about half a mile.
Advancing steadily to within 400 paces of the enemy, who was supported by artillery, we were ordered to charge, which was done in a handsome manner. The enemy was falling back to his re-enforcements, which were advancing in large force, when we were ordered to fall back and await re-enforcements. In this charge the Twenty-eighth lost in killed and wounded 32. At this time, being relieved by fresh troops, General Hurlbut, ordered the Twenty-eighth to fall back and for the present to look after the wounded, which a portion of them did, the remainder continuing in the field during the remainder of the day.
It is but proper to state that during a part of the 6th the Forty-first Illinois was under my immediate command, and it gives me pleasure to relate that they behaved nobly, doing their whole duty, both officers and men. Also on the 7th a portion of the Thirty-second Illinois was under my command, of whom I would bear the same testimony. For the Twenty-eighth Illinois I can but say that they behaved nobly, doing their whole duty in a manner becoming soldiers; therefore I shall not