to inform them that we desired the position held by them. They immediately retired, and we occupied the position. In the mean time messengers had been sent to find out and report the position of General Sherman's division, that we might we take position as ordered. None of them giving a report of his position that would enable us to reach him, Capt. J. J. Dollins, senior aide-de-camp on my staff, was dispatched to ascertain and report correctly his position, which he did, and directed the march to the place assigned to my brigade, to wit: My left resting on the right of General Denver's and my right resting on the Mobile and Ohio Railroad; General Ross' brigade occupied the position at Bowie Cut, where fortifications were thrown up, under the direction of Brigadier-General Judah.
Upon arriving at the position assigned me on the right of General Sherman I immediately threw out skirmishers about 300 yards in front of my brigade, under charge of Major M. Smith, of the
Forty-fifth Illinois Infantry, acting as officer of the day, a brave officer, and in every respect worthy of the duty assigned him. Skirmishing immediately took place, with but little execution being done on either side until the afternoon, when I re-enforced my skirmishers with one other company, commanded by Captain Wilson, from the Eighth Illinois Regiment, for the purpose of driving the enemy's pickets and obtaining a different position. In the engagement which followed the advance Orderly Sergt. Bernard Zick, Company B, Eighth Illinois Regiment, was severely wounded in the arm an one or two others slightly wounded. I had no means of ascertaining damage the enemy sustained, not being allowed to advance beyond a certain point. Afterward and near night the enemy's pickets, being apparently increased, made a dash at our line, with the evident intention of driving our pickets in, but the men, under the command of the gallant Captains Lieb and Wilson, of the Eighth Illinois Infantry, nobly maintained their position, and after firing two volleys at the enemy advanced and drove him back. Only 1 of my command was wounded in this action, while 7 of the enemy were killed and a large number wounded, but carried off the field. When night arrived I ordered the men to lay on their arms and be ready to meet an attack should be made. Everything remained quiet, however, through the night, only a few shots being fired.
Early in the morning shots became more frequent, which apparently indicated a movement by the enemy, but believing only a small force to be in front of my line I asked permission to advance, but was refused authority to do so. Unsteady firing was kept up at intervals during the forenoon and until about 2 o'clock in the afternoon. At about 1 p.m. I was notified that Colonel McDowell's brigade would relieve my command at 4 o'clock that evening. At the time specified two regiments of Colonel McDowell's command relieved the Eighth and Forty-fifth Illinois Regiments, which I started back on their way to the old camp, and was waiting in person for the remaining two regiments of my command, when my picket line immediately in front was briskly attacked and with great force, volley after volley being fired from the enemy into our ranks, many of the balls passing over the heads of the men standing in line of battle in the rear. I immediately ordered Captain Townes, assistant adjutant-general, to that the two regiments who were returning to camp and instruct them to await further orders. In this attack the men again exhibited that true Western courage which has characterized them in so many engagements, and maintained their position like veteran soldiers. After receiving the fire of the enemy they returned it with great vigor, and immediately advanced, under command