Numbers 150. Reports of Colonel Frederick Knefler, Seventy-ninth Indiana Infantry.
HDQRS. SEVENTY-NINTH REGIMENT INDIANA VOLS.
Near Murfreesborough, Tenn., January 8, 1863.
LIEUTENANT: The undersigned has the honor to report that, on December 31, 1862, after having recrossed Stone's River, the regiment was ordered into position west of the Murfreesborough pike, in rear of the Nineteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers, to check the columns of the enemy then pursuing our forces across the pike. After very heavy firing by the Nineteenth Ohio, and the repulse of the enemy, the regiment was ordered forward to relieve it. By command of the colonel commanding the brigade, bayonets were fixed and the enemy rapidly pursued, with very severe fire, for about three-quarters of a mile, driving them to their position behind works.
At this point an order was received to fall back, as the support on the right had given way before the enemy. Having fallen back in good order a distance of about 300 yards, halted and faced to the front. The regiment was ordered, by Major-General Rosecrans in person, to move by the right flank to an open field, to check the advance of the approaching enemy, and to cover the retreating right; which being accomplished, the regiment was ordered to fall back to the original line, the supports of the right and left having given way, and there joined the Nineteenth Ohio, the only regiment of the brigade remaining, the others having moved to t he support of a battery on the left. The regiment remained in that position until ordered to recross the pike at midnight.
The regiment was engaged for three hours, and the loss severe. A report of the casualties is herewith submitted.*
It may not be improper to remark that the behavior of the regiment (only a short time in the field, on a long march, constant and arduous service when in camp, with but few opportunities to drill), may be attributed, in a great measure, to the splendid conduct of the Nineteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers, Major Manderson commanding, the effect of whose example was not lost upon the officers and soldiers of this regiment.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel Seventy-ninth Regiment Indiana Volunteers.
Lieutenant W. H. H. SHEETS.
A. A. A. G., First Brigadier Third Div., Fourteenth A. C.
HDQRS. SEVENTY-NINTH REGIMENT INDIANA VOLS.,
Near Murfreesborough, Tenn., January 8, 1863
CAPTAIN: The undersigned has the honor to submit the following report of the Seventy-ninth Regiment Indiana Volunteers in the action of January 2, 1863:
Having marched, on January 1, from the position east of the pike, across Stone's River, the regiment was formed in line on the left of the Eleventh Regiment Kentucky Volunteers, supporting the brigade in front, and remained in that position until the morning of the 2nd, when it was detached from the First Brigade, and, by order of Colonel S. Beatty,
*Embodied in revised statement p. 213.