to the road. Here we received another fir, who occupied the position previously vacated by Colonel MacGavock. We formed line of battle promptly, and returned their fire with the effect of driving them back, and without further annoyance we reached the position originally held by us in the morning. I learned here that Colonel MacGavock had not fallen back; my scout, having no knowledge of his change of position as above stated, supposed when he found he was gone that he had abandoned the field. The engagement between his command and the enemy was renewed, and, guided by the sound of the guns, we advanced to his support. The firing, however, ceased before we definitely ascertained where the battle was going on, but we continued our advance in the same direction. In crossing the field intervening between us and the point we were aiming at, we met the Forty-first Tennessee Regiment on their way to the extreme left. When we reached the woods, we found ourselves on the right of the Tenth and Thirtieth. The firing, with the exception of a little sharpshooting, had ceased.
The enemy on our right were preparing to advance to the road through the old field into our rear, thus cutting off communication with the town and endangering the safety of the Tenth and Thirtieth and Forty-first Regiments. We marched quickly by the right flank into the field, under cover of a ravine with rather steep hills on each side. The enemy's skirmishers were deployed in our front, a little to the right. I posted my line of skirmishers behind the crest of the hill and ordered them to fire. The fire was effective, and drove them back in considerable confusion into their cover in the woods. When they reached the woods where their main body was concealed, they opened a feeble fire upon us, but a single volley from our regiment silenced them completely, and as long as we remained on the field they made no further effort to get into our rear in that direction.
After this we were requested by the officer commanding the Tenth and Thirtieth to dispose our regiment so as to meet a body of the enemy then advancing as if to attack them in flank. To meet this movement it was necessary to march by the left flank into the woods again. After posting skirmishers to watch the movements of that body of the enemy we had just engaged, we re-entered the woods, and disposed the regiment in a way to meet the movement of the enemy in either direction on the right or left. While in this position, awaiting developments and resting the men, I was informed that the Tenth and Thirtieth and Forty-first Regiments had been ordered to fall back. Having ascertained that this information was correct, and having no orders to the contrary, I also withdrew my regiment, as their falling back left me too much exposed. We reached the road in time to take position between the Tenth and Thirtieth and Forty-first, and in this order marched back to town. While in the road, the enemy's artillery kept up a vigorous shelling, but this did not prevent us from securing our knapsacks and haversacks, which had been left on the roadside as we went out to the field.
The officers and men of the regiment behaved exceedingly well. Some of the new recruits became confused in some of the maneuvers, and a few of them fired badly, but most of them, even some who have since deserted, fought bravely.
I am indebted to the officers and men of Companies A and B for the manner in which they performed their duties as skirmishers. Also to Lieutenant [R. T.] Hewell, Company F, employed as a scout, for prompt information of the enemy's movements.