skirmishers deployed and advanced across an open field on General Wood's center, but after two bold efforts were repulse, with a loss of several killed and wounded.
About 10 o'clock at night I received and order from General Woods to place a regiment immediately at a point designated by him in his rear, to relieve one of his own regiments on the Bellbuckle road. This was accompanied by a communication from Lieutenant-General Hardee to Major-General Cleburne, stating that the enemy was trying to get in our rear from Fairfield, having forced General Stewart back from Hoover's Gap to that place. General Wood now withdrew his command beyond Bellbuckle, an I ordered Colonel Kelly, of the Eighth Arkansas, to cover his rear with his regiment and to take post, as directed, on the Bellbuckle road. After midnight I moved the rest of my command by the left flank down the railroad to Bellbuckle. Here I received orders to cover the retreat of the retreat of the division on Tullahoma, and remained in place until 8 a. m. 27th, when I was relived by Colonel [T.] Harrison's brigade of cavalry. Drawing in all my pickets after this, I joined the rear of the division on the road to Schoefner's Bridge, where I was temporarily cut off from it by the interposition of Cheatham's division, of Polk's corps, in crossing Duck River.
In the engagements at Liberty Gap my loss was 2 officers and 23 men killed, 77 wounded, and 18 missing; total casualties, 120. The principal loss was in the Second Arkansas Regiment, although severely wounded, refused to leave the field and had to be forcibly removed. I am pleased to learn since the retreat to this place that the injury to this brave officer will not be serious. Privates J. D. Edgar, Company A, and L. Parrott, Company D, Fifth Arkansas Regiment, were both conspicuous for their bravery, and unfortunately both were brought from the field severely wounded.
The effect of the solid shot from the 12-pounder Napoleon gun seemed to cause the enemy at a mile distant to shift the position of his battery. It was moved in consequence to lower positions out of view, whence it was necessary to throw his shot and shell by increased elevation over the intervening hills far above and beyond us. One of his solid shot struck the chimney of a Mr. Jones' house, a mile from Bellbuckle.
On the 25th, the smoke of his pieces was not seen, and although the sound of his missiles grated through the air, the reports of his guns were to heard.
From the 24th to the 28th, when we reached Tullahoma, we were in rain and mud. I had about 300 men without shoes. The loss inflicted upon the enemy in these engagements with four regiments of my brigade at Liberty Gap can hardly be much less than 500. I have a copy of the Nashville Weekly Union of July 6, which admits a loss of 300, stating that [John F.] Miller's and [August] Willich's brigades were chiefly engaged; loss in the former heavy, in the latter slight. Miller was seriously wounded. Twelve United States flags were counted at different times, showing that the brigade was contending with an entire division of the enemy.
The conduct of officers and men in my command was unexceptionable. Captain [William B.] West, of the Thirteenth Arkansas Regiment, deserves notice for cool and collected bravery, in holding in check with his company a large body of dismounted cavalry on the right of the position at the gap on the evening of the 24th. The defiant shouts of our soldiery in the face of the enemy during these different engagements indicates an obstinate resolution in the cause of their country that only