During the forenoon of the 20th, I endeavored, in company with the medical director of General McCook's corps, to reach the hospitals at Crawfish Spring. We were soon met, however, by the enemy's skirmishers and compelled to return. About noon we noticed numerous wagons and ambulances moving on the roads to the rear, and subsequently large numbers of troops from the right and center were also moving in that direction. The ambulances were mostly loaded with wounded. We directed them to move to Chattanooga, via Rossville.
I had directed the medical purveyor of the corps, Asst. Surg. H. C. Barrell, on the evening of the 19th, to bring up the reserve supplies on the road leading from Rossville to the Third Division hospital at Cloud's house, believing this to be the most suitable locality [from the knowledge I possessed of the country] at which to collect the larger number of wounded, on account of the direct communication, by good roads, with Chattanooga. On the morning of the 20th I sent a messenger to Dr. Barrell, informing him that the Third Division hospital had fallen into the hands of the enemy, and directing him to take the Dry Valley road, which it appears he had already done. Being met by retreating troops and wagons, it was deemed prudent to halt this train of supplies, which was thus saved and subsequently taken to Chattanooga, where, by order of the medical director of the department, they were issued to the hospitals at this place and served a good purpose.
During the latter part of the afternoon the wounded from the left, where the battle was still raging, crowded the road leading from McDonald's house to the Dry Valley road. Many were conveyed in ambulances, and hundreds of the slightly injured who were able to walk or be led by their comrades moved along on foot.
After nightfall the command retired upon Rossville. The wounded continued to move to the rear nearly all night. On Monday morning, the 21st, ambulances were driven as far front as it was safe for them to go, and gathered up such wounded as had not been recovered in that vicinity during the night; a large number still at Rossville that morning were also sent to the rear.
A new line of battle was formed at the latter place. We suffered but little here, and the very small number of injured were all brought away.
Aside from the hospital arrangements, which had been made by the medical director of the department previous to our reaching this point, a general field hospital was about being established on the opposite side of the river. At my request I was permitted to appropriate a part of this for a corps field hospital. It remained under my general superintendence, with Surgeon Marks in charge, until the 10th instant, when all hospitals of this character were consolidated into one general field hospital.
It is the opinion generally of our surgeons that the wounded are doing remarkably well.
I regret to say that 19 of our medical officers, who remained at the captured hospitals, are still in the hands of the enemy, notwithstanding that our wounded have been paroled and brought within our lines. The following is a list of the names of these officers:
Surg. O. Q. Herrick, Surg. C. S. Arthur, Surg. C. N. Fowler, Surg. Joseph Fithian, Surg. J. L. Worden, Surg. John McCurdy, Surg. J. R. Brelsford, Surg. James P. Reeve, Surg. L. J. Dixon, Asst. Surg. W. B. Graham, Asst. Surg. J. C. Elliott, Asst. Surg. A. H. Shaffer, Asst. Surg. E. F. Purdum, Asst. Surg. N. H. Sidwell, Asst. Surg.