Railroad near the residence of Mr. Alexander, and there remained, doing picket duty, until 6 o'clock the following morning, when I was ordered to fall back and report my regiment at the brigade headquarters. Here I received orders to rest the men and provide them with refreshments. At 9 o'clock I was ordered to march immediately and report to Colonel Oliver, commanding the Second Brigade, who was engaging the enemy then where the Memphis and Charleston Railroad crosses the Chewalla pike road. Colonel Oliver ordered me, immediately on my arrival, to advance two companies as skirmishers and hold the balance of my command as a reserve. The skirmishers were not out more than an hour till they were driven in by superior numbers of the enemy, when they again joined me. The enemy now appeared in great force on the left of our line of battle, firing a terrible volley into our ranks, causing our men to waver and fall back. I was then ordered by General McArthur to advance the Sixteenth Wisconsin to the front and engage the enemy. This was done promptly, and every officer and soldier appeared anxious to meet the enemy. The contest here was very severe, but not a man in my command moved from his position until ordered to fall back, notwithstanding the enemy in overwhelming force were within a few rods of us and nearly surrounding us. A new line of defense was immediately formed, with my command on the extreme left, and here again we encountered the enemy, doing effective service in keeping him in check during the balance of the day. In the evening we marched into town and lay all night upon our arms.
The next morning we marched with the brigade, under the command of General McArthur, and took our position south of the town and on the left of our line of defense. At about 10 o'clock I was ordered by General McArthur to advance my command next to where the Kossuth road intersects the road leading to Battery E and there halt, and deploy one company to skirmish the woods and another company to support the skirmishers at convenient distance. When I arrived at the point designated I ordered out Company K to skirmish and Company D to support. Both companies were soon engaged with the enemy. Hearing that the contest was severe I ordered forward Company G to support both companies already engaged. The enemy's pickets were soon driven in. In this contest we lost in killed 2 and 4 wounded.
At about 4 o'clock we again marched with General McArthur to the residence of Alexander, before referred to, where we captured the enemy's hospital, containing a portion of his wounded, Medical Director Bond, nurses, &c., besides a quantity of fire-arms. During the night a portion of my command acted as pickets and in the morning were ordered back to their tents. The remainder, under the direction of General McArthur, took the advance in the pursuit of the fleeing enemy and skirmished the woods to Chewalla, capturing a large number of prisoners. This duty was gallantly performed. At this place General McArthur took command of the division, and my command was again attached to Colonel Oliver's brigade.
And here I wish to return my sincere thanks to those gallant officers for the many favors bestowed on the Sixteenth Regiment on our march to Ripley and back to this place. Where every officer and soldier did his duty so nobly it is hard to discriminate; but the cool, daring bravery of George Williamson, our color-bearer, a private in Company E, deserves special mention. He proudly and defiantly waved the flag in the face of the enemy until it was almost shot into shreds. He deserves will of his country. Captain Osborn is also entitled to great credit. He assisted me much, acting as a field officer through all the contest