As we came near the farm house, heavy batteries of the enemy, supported by strong lines of infantry near a railroad embankment, forming a strong defense, were visible obliquely to the right, on the northeast of the Nashville turnpike. The brigade advanced rapidly and steadily under a destructive fire from the artillery. The Twentieth Tennessee, passing to the right of the house, engaged the enemy with vigor on the right in some woods near the river, capturing some 25 prisoners and clearing the wood. The First and Third Florida, on the extreme left, pressed forward to the cedar forest with but little loss. The two central regiments [the Sixtieth North Carolina and Fourth Florida] found great difficulty in pressing through the ruins and strong inclosures of the farm-house, and, retarded by these obstacles and by a fire from the enemy's sharpshooters in front, and a very fierce cannonade, partially enfilading their lines, were for a moment thrown into confusion at the verge of the wood. They halted and commenced firing, but, being urged forward, they responded with loud shouts and gained the cedars. The enemy turned they responded with loud shouts and gained the cedars. The enemy turned upon the wood a heavy fire from many pieces of artillery, across a field 400 or 500 yards distant, and, though we lost some valuable lives, the brigade maintained its position with firmness in the edge of the wood.
Having met Lieutenant-General Hardee, he ordered me, with Adams' brigade [under Colonel Gibson] added to my command, to hold the wood. We bivouacked for the night, establishing our pickets far in the field and very near the enemy. The Twentieth Tennessee, which had been directed by Captain [R. W.] Wooley, assistant adjutant-general, near the river, finding their force insufficient to advance, after losing many men, halted in good order and rejoined the brigade at nightfall in the cedars. Wright's battery, having been detached by General Hardee, took no part in the action.
At roll-call, about dark, it was ascertained that the loss suffered by my command was 155 killed and wounded. The companies of the Sixtieth North Carolina, under the immediate command of Colonel [Joseph A.] McDowell, were with me; but those separated from his regiment in passing the burnt house, to which I have alluded, fell back without orders to the encampment, with the exception of some of the men and officers who joined the Twentieth Tennessee Regiment, and who did not rejoin their regiment until after night. Some few prisoners were taken and 400 or 500 stand of arms were secured.
On Friday, about 2 o'clock, the two brigades under my command were withdrawn from the cedars and ordered to take position in line of battle across the river, near the original post of Hanson's brigade. This being done, preparations for attack were made, and Major-General Breckinridge formed his division in two lines, Pillow's and Hanson's brigades being in the front line with mine 200 yards in the rear of Pillow's, to support his command, and Gibson's on my left, to support Hanson's.
About 4 o'clock, the order to advance being given, the division moved forward rapidly through a wood and an open field beyond to drive the enemy beyond the river and seize a hill that would enable our artillery to enfilade in reverse their batteries. As soon as the field was entered the engagement commenced, and our men, pressing forward with great ardor, drove the enemy over the crest of the hill, and was soon hotly engaged. On our right the enemy far outflanked us, and the Twentieth Tennessee suffered severely, but dashed forward into the woods with its accustomed gallantry and drove the enemy down the