whole of General Thomas' corps safely crossed with all its artillery and transportation.
On the 4th we descended into Lookout Valley and bivouacked at Brown's Spring. The next morning I took out the Seventy-eighth Pennsylvania and Twenty-first Ohio on a reconnaissance, leaving one regiment for the night at Payne's Mill, the other at Cureton's Mill. Left on the morning of the 6th and bivouacked at the crossing of Lookout Creek, leaving the Seventy-eighth behind at Payne's Mill. The next day, the 7th, moved to the foot of Lookout Mountain; my command was deployed in groups up the steep mountain side to repair the road, and assist the artillery and wagons in the difficult and tedious ascent. The whole of the 8th and forenoon of the 9th were consumed in this laborious and toilsome duty. The men worked cheerfully, and with such care that no accident of any kind occurred.
On the morning of the 9th saw all our transportation on the mountain and on its way down into the famous Chattanooga Valley. The Seventy-eighth Pennsylvania rejoined my command while descending the mountains.
On the 10th, according to orders previously received, my brigade had the advance on our reconnaissance toward the Pigeon Mountain. Skirmishing with the enemy began early in the day, but we moved slowly and steadily onward, with no loss on our side, though the fire of the enemy was at times very vindictive.
When I reached the mouth of the ravine that finally forms Dug Gap, I halted my command and reported to the general commanding the presence of the enemy strongly posted in our front. At night I threw out a strong line of pickets with lookouts on the eminences, and had my men lie on their arms. At 3 o'clock at night I silently and carefully withdrew my command one-half mile to the rear, leaving the picket in its original line.
Early the next morning the fire of the rebel sharpshooters began on my right and gradually swept round to my left until the whole of my pickets in front and on either side were hotly engaged. In this fierce engagement my men nobly stood their ground, and repelled their assailants at every point. I had 3 men killed and several severely wounded. It was evident that the enemy were in great force and endeavoring to pass round on our left.
Being relieved by General Starkweather's brigade, under the direction of the general commanding, my brigade was withdrawn and again placed in position at the cross-roads, near the general's headquarters, from which it was again removed and placed in position near the Widow Davis'. During this eventful day I cannot too highly recommend the behavior of the officers and men under me, taking up new positions and abandoning others in the face of an overwhelming enemy, and all done without the least confusion or accident of any kind.
We reached the cove near Stevens' Gap late at night, where we remained, changing our position once, until the morning of the 17th, when, according to orders received from the general, my brigade was moved to Alley's Spring, and the next day to Crawfish Spring. The same night, according to orders received, I took the Seventy-eighth, Thirty-seventh Indiana, and Twenty-first Ohio back about 2 miles and took a strong position near Chickamauga Creek, in order to protect our right flank until General McCook, who was then on the march from Stevens' Gap, could join us.