rested upon the bank of the river. When in this position the action commenced on our right, and in an incredibly short space of time I found hundreds of fugitives and numerous wagons and ambulances fleeing in confusion, and attempting to cross the river. Orders came from you to arrest the flight of these fugitives, and to this end I directed my men to fix bayonets and halt the panic-stricken soldiers. To Captain John P. Dufficy, acting major, and Adjutant Scully I am much indebted, as well as the company officers, for energetic efforts to form the recusants into line. Two small battalions were formed, and under an officer sent back to the right of the line. The confusion was very great, and I feel as if it was due to my officers and men to mention particularly the cool and determined manner [in which] they brought order out of confusion.
A short time after the subsidence of the panic on the west side of the river, I discovered a stampede arising among the teamsters who had crossed on the east side. An officer rode up and informed me that a battalion of the enemy's cavalry was about to charge upon and capture the wagons-among them were two wagons belonging to the general-in-chief-and requesting me, if possible, to save them. I instantly put the regiment in march to the ford, in order to meet the cavalry force. On my road to the ford I was ordered by Acting Assistant Adjutant-General Clark to form line again on the Fifty-first Ohio. I did so, and saw the cavalry coming in full charge on the train. At this juncture I threw the left wing of the regiment back, and opened a severe fire on the enemy, the battery on our right shelling him handsomely at the same time. The result was, the enemy remained but a little while, and managed to get but a few of the rear wagons away with him.
On the morning of January 1, our division (Third) recrossed to the east side of the river. The lines were formed in the following order: First line of our brigade consisted of the Fifty-first Ohio, Eighth Kentucky, and Thirty-fifth Indiana, the latter regiment being posted on the extreme left of the brigade, and just behind a curtain of woodland. In the rear of my regiment was the Ninety-ninth Ohio; on the left was the Seventy-ninth Indiana. In the course of the day I furnished three companies of skirmishers, G, I, and E, under Captains Prosser and McKim. Skirmishing was kept up all day. In the evening I relieved Companies E, I, and G by sending out the other seven companies, under command of Captain Dufficy.
At midnight the enemy undertook to drive in my skirmishers by a vigorous assault. I am proud to report that in this they signally failed. The line of skirmishers never gave an inch. On the contrary, in the gallant ardor of the moment, they drove the enemy beyond his own line and established the Thirty-fifth upon it. In this affair I lost 1 man killed and 2 wounded. Captain Dufficy on the right, and Captain Crowe upon the left of skirmishers, behaved with distinguished gallantry.
At daylight I found it necessary to relieve the line of skirmishers, as they had been all night and part of the preceding day without rest or nourishment. An order came from brigade headquarters for every regiment to throw out in front of their own line two companies of skirmishers. The skirmishers from my regiment were under command of Captain James McKim, a cool and daring officer.
All day of the 2nd instant, skirmishing kept up heavy in the entire front. About 2 p. m. a rebel battery opened upon us and threw solid shot and shell until 4 p. m., when the enemy, in force, advanced upon us. I had directed my men to lie down and fix bayonets, and in no case to fire until I gave the word. The skirmishing became very brisk, and my skirmishers came in, fell into line with the regiment, reporting