No braver or more gallant officers than these have given their lives to their country in this war.
I hope, sir, that the conduct of the men and officers of this regiment in the engagement at Murfreesborough and the days and nights of duty and exposure connected with it has been satisfactory to you. I can complain of none of them myself but might compliment many of them in terms of high encomium. I might with propriety mention the case of Corporal Mayson, of the color-guard, who, when the color-sergeant was wounded and the colors fell from his hand, instantly seized it in exultation, bearing it as a beacon to the regiment through the storm of the battle; and of Orderly Sergt. Joseph Thompson, who, upon reaching the edge of the field where the brigade halted, ran forward, overtaking the retreating enemy, seized a prisoner and started back with him, but this person being shot down in his hands he relinquished him; back to the lines of the still-retreating enemy, and seized a second prisoner, whom he brought off safely.
Before closing this report, sir, I beg leave to congratulate you upon the successful and skillful manner in which your brigade was maneuvered and kept together, and, through you, I congratulate our division, corps, and other commanders for our successful operations against greatly superior numbers. I hope, sir, that yours and their success may never be less marked or less safe to yourself in all future engagements with our enemies.
Very respectfully, general, yours, &c.,
F. J. WALKER,
Colonel Nineteenth Tennessee Regiment.
Brigadier General ALEXANDER P. STEWART.
Numbers 204. Report of Major S. W.. Shannon, Twenty-fourth Tennessee Infantry.
SHELBYVILLE, TENN., January 10, 1863.
The following is a report of the battle at Murfreesborough, Tenn., in which the Twenty-fourth Tennessee Regiment was engaged, commencing on December 29, [1862,] and ending on January 4, 1863:
We left camp on the morning of December 29, 1862; crossed Stone's River and formed line of battle on the north side of said river, and there remained under frequent shelling until December 31, 1862, when we were ordered to advance, which we did through a corn-field; thence through a skirt of woods and across the Wilkinson pike, advancing on through a stubble field; thence into a cedar glade, where we engaged the enemy and drove him through the woods before us.
Here we sustained a loss of 9 killed, 3 of whom were commissioned officers (1 captain and 2 lieutenants), also 70 wounded, 4 of whom were commissioned officers (our colonel commanding, lieutenant-colonel, adjutant and 1 lieutenant), our colonel and adjutant mortally wounded.
On arriving at the edge of an old field in our front, we were ordered back by some one representing himself as aide-de-camp to Major-General Cheatham, which order was obeyed by falling back to the top of the hill, where we reformed, advanced, and took our former position at the edge of an old field, where we remained in line of battle under occasional heavy shelling, which position we held until ordered off on the night of January 4, during which time we lost 1 man killed and several wounded, resulting from the occasional shelling and skirmishing along our line.