At early dawn on the morning of the 5th instant the different regiments composing the Second Brigade, of which my regiment formed a part, were assigned their positions in line of battle. After having advanced for considerable distance over very difficult ground my regiment, with the Thirty-first Mississippi and Fourth Kentucky, was ordered to commence the attack on the enemy's left, which order was executed vigorously but cautiously skirmishers being thrown out at different times and places, the fog hovering over the field rendering it impossible to discover what was in our front at a distance of but few paces. The enemy retired slowly before the well-directed fire which we constantly poured upon them, falling back from their first encampment. On reaching that encampment my regiment was exposed to a galling fire in front and on the left flank, when we were ordered to fall back. At this point Lieutenant Childress, of Company K, was mortally, and Lieutenant Hays, of Company G, and Sergeant Loughlin, of Company B, were severely wounded, while gallantly fighting, and left on the field.
Having fallen back to a small ravine, the line was reformed and advanced to dislodge the enemy from their last encampment to our left, which was gallantly done after a severe contest. The order then being given for us to retire, it was executed in good order. Sickness and death had thinned my ranks to such an extent that I only carried into action 97 rank and file, of which number 2 were killed and 9 wounded.
I take pleasure in saying that although neither of my field officers was with me, both being absent sick, I found but little or no difficulty in rallying my men. I saw not a single instance in my regiment amidst all the galling fires from the enemy, which they withstood, of any officer or soldier being disposed to shrink from his duty, but all seemed to vie with each other in the stern determination to conquer or die. In the last charge made upon the enemy, when they were driven from their last encampment, I am proud to say my regiment was side by side with the foremost in the charge, and when the work was accomplished of driving the enemy from their position and we were ordered to fall back they did so in perfect order.
Colonel, Commanding Thirty-first Alabama Regiment.
Major JOHN A. BUCKNER,
No. 28. Report of Lieutenant Col. John Snodgrass, Fourth Alabama Battalion.
HEADQUARTERS FOURTH ALABAMA BATTALION,
August 6, 1862.
I have the honor to make the following report of the part taken by the Fourth Alabama Battalion in the battle of Baton Rouge on the 5th instant:
When the position of the various regiments, &c., were assigned, the battalion, with the Fifth Kentucky Regiment, was ordered to support the Hudson Battery, which position it occupied until between 7 and 8 a.m., when I was ordered to advance to the support of our forces, then engaging the enemy at their second encampment. The battalion con-