War of the Rebellion: Serial 024 Page 0180 Chapter XXIX. WEST TENN. AND NORTHERN MISS.

Search Civil War Official Records

About 3 o'clock in the morning, October 4, the pickets of the Sixty-third Ohio captured a captain of artillery of the enemy searching ground to plant a battery. At 4 o'clock, it being still quite dark, the enemy opened upon our position with four batteries at close range, one, firing grape, being not more than 300 yards distant. The flight of shot and shell and the crashing of houses was trying to our young soldiers, but they took it quietly, and fortunately, being under the crest of the ridge, met few casualties. At break of day Captain Williams and Lieutenant Robinett opened upon the enemy's batteries, and Lieutenant Lamberg, of the Third Michigan Battery, opening a flank fire, the enemy fled, leaving a gun an caisson. The First U. S. Infantry captured the first and the Sixty-third Ohio the latter. At 8 o'clock in the morning I was ordered by the general commanding in person to throw out heavy lines of skirmishes on both sides of the Chewalla road and determine the morning. A force equal to two regiments was immediately pushed out, I superintending the right and Colonel Mower the left. I felt obliged to send Colonel Mower on account of his experience and the importance of the reconnaissance. Major McDowell, Thirty-ninth Ohio, had the immediate command of the skirmishers on the right, moving to the northwest, pushing back the enemy's light troops. In less than half an hour our skirmishers were forced to recoil before the fire of the whole force of the enemy in line of battle. Colonel Mower's horse was shot and he was prostrated by an ugly wound in the neck and taken prisoner. In a few moments the plank of the enemy was apparent. Three deep columns burst simultaneously from the wood north of Corinth and pushed rapidly for the position of the batteries. Captain Williams opened at once with his 30-pounder Parrotts and Captain Maurice added a destructive flank fire from the six guns of his field battery. The columns of the enemy pushed on, and the fate of the day hung in the balance until I saw the fine infantry of General hamilton bearing down in determined font upon the enemy. At this instant I sent the Fifth Minnesota to attack the flank of the second column of the enemy counting from his right, and I am happy to bear testimony to the gallant fight of this little regiment, commanded by Colonel Hubbard. Few regiments on the field did more effective killing than they. If they lost their feathers on May 28 they have recovered them now.

Should God spare me to see many battles I never expect to see a more grand sight than the battle-field presented at this moment. The our advancing infantry. The roll of musketry and the flash of artillery was incessant as the enemy tried in vain to form line under fire. As the smoke cleared up I can safely say I could see every fighting man on the field; but we were not long left spectators of the fight. Our skirmishers were driven in, and soon a line of battle of a brigade crowned the ridge opposite us an commenced to pour an destructive musketry fire upon the Sixty-third, Forty-third, and Twenty-seventh Ohio Regiments, the Eleventh Missouri, and the batteries of Williams and Robinett.

I repaired to the Sixty-third Ohio Regiment, and here testify to the veteran constancy exhibited by them until one-half their number was prostrated and 9 of their commissioned officers out of 13 were killed or wounded. Colonel Kirby Smith and his adjutant (Heyl) were both shot down, and at this moment a column of the enemy, gallantly led, rushed down the road and planted their flag outside the ditch of the Redoubt Robinett.