War of the Rebellion: Serial 036 Page 0676 Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC. Chapter XXXVI.

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siana was, by direction of General Bowen, posted on the extreme right of my position, on a ridge separated rom the remainder of the command by a deep wooded hollow. This regiment was not actively engaged maintained its position until the command was drawn off. The Fourth Mississippi was placed on the left of the center, its right forming part Louisiana by a deep ravine, the left extending along a skirt of woods which bounded on the side next to us an open field, forming a re-entering angle, the whole front of the regiment covered by skirmishers. The Forty-sixth Mississippi was posted on a hill 600 or 800 yards in rear of the front, on the left of the main road, as a reserve, and to support a battery placed there. The SEVENTEENTH Louisiana and Fourth Mississippi were soon actively engaged with the enemy's skirmishers; the former the most warmly, as it occupied the key to our position. Two pieces of artillery placed upon the ridge where the Forty-sixth Mississippi was stationed, although nearly out of ammunition, opened upon the enemy's advance in front of the Fourth Mississippi, and checked their progress. The number of pieces at this point was afterward increased to six, but their fire, though accurate and effective, was necessarily slow and at long intervals, from scarcity of ammunition. The fire was kept up with but little intermission along our front until between 3 and 4 p. m., when, no progress having been made by the enemy, General Bowen directed me to make an effort to advance and try their strength.

I therefore placed the Forty-sixth Mississippi in an open field on a hillside, to the right of the road and of the SEVENTEENTH Louisiana, covered by a company of skirmishers. The ground was too much intersected by hollows, woods, and deep ravines to admit of simultaneous action; but I stared the Fourth Mississippi across the open field in front of its left, covered by three companies of skirmishers, with instructions to dash across the space to the woods beyond, and seize and hold the position. The SEVENTEENTH Louisiana was directed to debouch from the wood in the same manner, but their position was so much cut up by ravines and other irregularities of ground that no line of battle could be formed, and companies were compelled to act independently. The Forty-sixth Mississippi was directed to rush across the field and up the slight acclivity on which they were placed, and possess themselves of the woods in front. Before the dispositions could be entirely completed, the enemy opened a sweeping fire o grape and shrapnel, completely enfilading the road and covering all approach from my center and right. The Fourth Mississippi had commenced the movement as directed, and started across the field under a heavy fire of musketry, but before the other regiments could be placed in motion it was compelled to retake its position, having found, as reported, two brigades of infantry opposed to its left. It was then evident to me that an attempt to move forward would result in the destruction of the entire command without accomplishing the object. I therefore reported the condition of affairs to General Bowen, who directed me to relinquish the attempt. The Forty-sixth Mississippi was then returned to its former position, but afterward, from representation from Colonel Richardson that his right was menaced, four companies of this regiment were sent forward to the right of the road and of his position, where they remained until the command was about to be drawn off. The enemy opened at this time a concentrated fire upon our battery posted on the hill. Their skirmishers advanced against the Fourth Mississippi. Our batteries checked their advance, but in so doing killed and wounded several of our own men,