been killed, and the regiment badly cut up. I therefore moved at once, with the other three regiments of my command, to their relief.
The line they were trying to hold was that part of our original line of battle lying immediately to the right of the railroad. This portion of our original line, about two regimental fronts, together with two fronts to the left, held by Colonel Wagner's brigade, was all of our original line of battle but what our troops had been driven from; and if they succeeded in carrying this they would have turned our left, and a total rout of our forces could not then have been avoided.
Seeing the importance of the position, I told my men it must be held, even if it cost the last man we had. I immediately sent in the Twenty-sixth Ohio, commanded by gallant Major William H. Squires, to take position on the right of the Third Kentucky, and support them, and dispatched an aide for Estep's Eighth Indiana Battery to come to this point and open on the enemy. No sooner had the Twenty-sixth got into position than they became hotly engaged, and the numerous dead and wounded that were immediately brought to the rear told how desperate was the contest.
The gallant Lieutenant McClelland, of that regiment, was brought to the rear mortally wounded, and expired by my side in less than five minutes from the time the regiment took position; still the fight went on, and still brave men went down. The Third Kentucky, now reduced to less than one-half its original numbers, with ten out of its fourteen remaining officers badly wounded, were still bravely at work.
In less than ten minutes after the fall of Lieutenant-Colonel McKee, the gallant Major Daniel R. Collier, of that regiment, received two severe wounds-one in the leg and the other in the breast. Adjutant Bullitt had his horse shot under him; but nothing could induce either of them to leave the field. Equally conspicuous and meritorious was the conduct of Major Squires and Adjutant Franklin, of the Twenty-sixth Ohio. Major Squires' horse was shot three times through the neck; nevertheless, he and all his officers stood by throughout, and most gallantly sustained and encouraged their men.
Estep's battery came up in due time, and, taking position on a little rise of ground in rear of the Twenty-sixth Ohio and Third Kentucky, opened a terrible fire of shot and shell over the heads of our infantry.
In about one hour after the Twenty-sixth Ohio got into position this terrible attack of the enemy was repulsed, and they drew back into the woods, and under cover of an intervening hill, to reform their shattered columns and renew the attack.
I now took a survey of the situation, and found that along the entire line to the right and left of the railroad, which had not yet been carried by the enemy. I was the only general officer present, and was, therefore, in command, and responsible for the conduct of affairs. Colonel Hazen, commanding a brigade in General Palmer's division, was present with his brigade, to the left of his brigade, and most nobly did he co-operate with me with the Sixth and Twenty-fourth Ohio, to the right of the railroad, while Colonel Wagner, commanding the Second Brigade, in the First Division, left wing, nobly sustained his front, assisted by Colonel Hazen, to the left of the railroad.
I now relieved the Third Kentucky Regiment, which was nearly annihilated and out of ammunition, with the Fifty-eighth Indiana Regiment, of my brigade, commanded by Colonel George P. Buell, and this, being a much larger regiment than the Third Kentucky, filled up the entire