to a fence on the crest of the hill. Here our skirmishers were first fired upon, and we discovered a heavy force supporting a battery in a cornfield immediately in front of our lines. The regiment moved up in fine style to within 150 yards of the battery, under a galling fire from the artillery and infantry. We halted and engaged them for some length of time to great effect. Colonel Marks was wounded here at the first fire, and the command then devolved upon me. The enemy's line finally gave way, and the order was given to charge. Never did soldiers obey an order with more alacrity. We captured the battery [four pieces], and drove the enemy back to the edge of a thick woodland. After passing the battery, we halted and engaged the enemy a second time, soon starting him back again. I ordered a second charge, which was well executed under a heavy fire. On gaining the fence from which we had just driven the enemy, I reformed the regiment. Here the enemy made a very stubborn stand, taking shelter behind the trees and logs; here my left suffered severely from an enfilading fire. The enemy's line had not given way on my left. He occupied the opposite side of the fence from me, not exceeding 60 yards from me. Colonel Keeble, with his noble little band, came soon to our relief, with General Liddell on his left. I discovered that the right wing of the brigade was still held in check some distance in our rear by the enemy, strongly posted in a wood in front of it; but my men were so anxious to go forward that I ordered them to clear the wood in front. So soon as I saw the enemy's line break to my left, we kept up a running and a very destructive fire through the wood, which was, perhaps, some 300 yards.
On emerging from the woods, I discovered a Federal hospital immediately in front, and one piece of artillery just at the left of it, which was silent, and a battery of four pieces about 300 yards to the right. The regiment at this point made a half-wheel to the right, seven companies passing to the right and three companies to the left of the hospital. The battery that was on my right was playing on the right of the brigade, and seemed not to discover us. On passing the hospital and clearing the fences, I discovered the enemy in force forming about 300 yards in front of me. I ordered a halt and reformed the regiment, having passed some 50 yards to the rear of the battery that was on my right, and not more than 150 yards distant, but a slight elevation of ground concealed it from me. It silenced, though, about this time, and moved off to my right, leaving behind one piece. There we captured 2 wagons, well loaded with ammunition for small-arms, and 8 mules. At the hospital we captured a large number of prisoners, besides quite a number in the woods, alluded to heretofore; I think in all not less than 200 unhurt [my officers think more], besides killing and wounding a great number. Many of the wounded had already been collected at the hospital for treatment.
My regiment was fired upon after clearing the woods by a party of Federals posted in a cotton-gin about 70 yards in front of the hospital, and my men returned the fire, killing several of them. The enemy continued to fire upon our line, particularly the left wing, until we had passed the hospital. I feel very certain that my regiment was first at this hospital. At the time I ordered the charge into the woods in front of it, I was at least 75 yards in advance of any troops on my left. We passed through the woods very rapidly, and we certainly had less space to pass over in getting there than any regiment on our left. After passing the hospital and reforming the regiment, we occupied a position nearly out of sight of it. I found upon examination at this point that our stock of ammunition was nearly exhausted. We replenished from