men, killed and wounded, paid for its possession, but we held the gap.
Two divisions of Longstreet's corps confronted the position. Determined to take it, they successively came to the assault. A battery of six guns, placed in the george, poured death and slaughter into them. They charged to within a few yards of the pieces, but our grape and canister, and the leaden hail of our musketry, delivered in sparing but terrible volleys from cartridges taken in many instances from the boxes of their fallen companions, was too much even for Longstreet's men. About sunset they made their last charge, when our men, being out of ammunition, rushed on them with bayonet, and they gave way to return no more.
The fury of the conflict was nearly as great on the fronts of Brannan and Wood, being less furious toward the left. But a columns of the enemy had made its way to near our left and to the right of Colonel McCook's position. Apprised of this, General Thomas directed Reynolds to move his division from its position, and pointing ont the rebels told him to go in there.
To save time, the troops of Reynolds were faced by the rear rank and moved with the bayonet at a double-quick, with a shout walked over the rebels, capturing some 500. This closed the battle of the 20th. At nightfall the enemy had been repulsed along the whole line, and sunk into quietude without attempting to renew the combat.
General Thomas, considering the excessive labors of the troops, the scarcity of ammunition, food, and water, and having orders from the general commanding to use his discretion, determined to retire on Rossville, where they arrived in good order, took post before morning, receiving supplies from Chattanooga, and offering the enemy battle during all the next day and repulsing his reconnaissance. On the night of the 21st we withdrew from Rossville, took firm possession of the objective point of our campaign - Chattanooga - and prepared to hold it.
The operations of the cavalry during the battle on the 19th were very important. General Mitchell, with three brigades, covered our right flank along the line on the Chickamauga, above Crawfish Spring, against the combined efforts of the great body of the rebel cavalry, whose attempts to cross the stream they several time repulsed.
Wilder fought, dismounted, near the center, intervening two or three times with mountain howitzers and Spencer rifles very opportunely.
On the 20th Minty covered our left and rear at Missionary Mills, and later in the day on the Ringgold road.
General Mitchell, after its repulse, extended, covered our extreme right, and with Wilder, after its repulse, extended over Missionary Ridge, held the whole country to the base of Lookout Mountain, and all our trains, artillery, caissons, and spare wagons sent there for greater safety retiring from the field. He was joined by Post's brigade of Davis' division, which had not closed on the army and was not in action.
On the 21st the cavalry still covered our right as securely as before, fighting and holding at bay very superior numbers. The number of cavalry combats during the whole campaign have been numerous, the successes as numerous, but the army could not have dispensed with those of the 19th, 20th, and 21st.