War of the Rebellion: Serial 029 Page 0833 Chapter XXXII. THE STONE'S RIVER CAMPAIGN.

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1 man were wounded, the former mortally, while daringly opposing the enemy's skirmishers. He was a brave man and faithful officer. About 3 p.m. the brigade, except the Ninth Regiment, left to protect the battery, moved by the right flank to within half a mile of the enemy posted in the strip of woods near the lower ford, a which has heretofore been described. Here the line of battle parallel to the river was formed, this regiment being on the extreme left. When the forward movement commenced, impediments in front made it necessary for this regiment to move in rear of the Second Kentucky until open ground was reached, causing considerable effort to regain its right position. We were also afterward embarrassed by a pond of water and an impenetrable thicket, causing a movement by the right of companies to the first for a short distance. Besides all this, while the line of battle was at first parallel with the river, at the time of attack the left had been swung around, so that nearly a right angle was made with the stream. The line of battle was so much longer than the front of the position held by the enemy that it was impossible for the whole force to reach the place of attack simultaneously, and on that the front of the position held by the enemy that it was impossible for the whole force to reach the place of attack simultaneously, and on that account several of the regiments overlapped, so that the Second Kentucky, although next to mine on the right, did not have the full space requisite, yet, as it was, its left, when swung around, rested near the bluff, precluding entirely a movement by this regiment any farther in line of battle. Nevertheless, I preserved the line of this regiment until the river was reached. Upon reaching the eminence that hid us at first from the enemy, they were discovered at the distance of 150 yards, posted behind the fence above referred to and in the woods. The order having been previously given by General Hanson, our forces opened fire upon them as soon as discovered, and, with a shout, moved briskly forward to the charge, driving the enemy precipitately from the fence down the river toward the ford. When our line reached the fence, the alternative for me was either to be left entirely in rear of our lines and out of the fight, or to move by the right flank along on the edge of and under the bluff down the river. The second I adopted unhesitatingly, and was carried out with such alacrity and bravery by my officers and men that they pursued the enemy to the ford and even across the river at the ford. On account of the want of space to maneuver, and the considerable change of direction that had to be made to face the enemy, as before stated, some confusion occurred after reaching the woods, and no line of battle was kept, and there was great danger from the fire of our own men. Following my regiment to the ford of the river as soon as my efforts to stop the firing of those in rear would allow me, I discovered a large body of the enemy just in rear behind the crest of the opposite bluff, advancing. A considerable number of men from the different regiments of the brigade had by this time posted themselves behind a picket fence, and were firing on both the advancing and retreating enemy. A large number of the Yankees were at the time sheltered behind the bank of the river, displaying the white flag. Brigadier-General Hanson, on account of his wound, not being at any time present on the left after the fight commenced, and knowing that what I supposed was the object of the attack had been obtained in driving the enemy out of the woods across the river, I did not hesitate to order the firing at that point to cease, with a view to form the men so as to meet the advancing re-enforcements, or to fall back in good order, which I feared would have to be done, for the high bluff on the other side of the river gave the enemy a fearful advantage of position in addition to that of numbers; besides, about midway the timber we were exposed to a murderous fire from their batteries. This

53 R R-VOL XX, PT I