Reports of Colonel Abram O. Miller, Seventy-second Indiana (Mounted)
HDQRS. SEVENTY-SECOND INDIANA VOLUNTEERS,
Camp at Pond Spring, Ga., September 15, 1863.
SIR: I herewith submit a report of the part taken by my command in the engagement at Rock Spring, Ga., on the 12th instant:
Immediately after the skirmishers of the Seventeenth Indiana engaged the enemy, in accordance with your orders, I directed Lieutenant-Colonel Kirkpatrick to proceed with four companies (A, F, D, and I) of my regiment to the left of the position occupied by the Seventeenth Indiana, across a hollow to an adjoining hill. Arriving on the hill, Lieutenant-Colonel Kirkpatrick dismounted these companies, formed line of battle, and advanced to a cross-roads a quarter of a mile father front, where he halted and reported to me that he held possession of a road which lay at right angles, near the crossing with the one on which the main column was advancing. In the meantime I sent Company C, under Captain Robinson, some distance to the right of the Seventeenth to observe and hold in check any flank movement which might be made against us by the enemy from that direction. The four remaining companies were dismounted and formed on the left of the road, and to the left of the Seventeenth. The whole line was then advanced through the woods about a quarter of a mile, where I halted, placed the four left companies of my regiment in charge of Major Carr, then joined my four right companies at the point above stated, and by your orders advanced with my four left companies on my right through a dense copse of pine undergrowth, across a ravine, and ascended a ridge running parallel with the road leading from Ringgold to La Fayette. Sergeant Clark, with the mounted scouts of the Seventy-second Indiana, who had been sent out as flankers a distance of 200 yards to my left, at this time engaged the skirmishers of the enemy and drove them back a quarter of a mile, where he met their main [body] advancing toward us in line of battle. The scouts, after firing a volley upon them, returned and reported them advancing with their right extending a considerable distance beyond our left. To avoid the contingency of a flanking demonstration by the rebels, I moved my four right companies (now on the left) obliquely to the left across an open field, where I entered a woods covered with thick undergrowth. Here my command encountered the enemy, who opened upon us with a volley of musketry and two pieces of artillery, shouting along their whole line as they fired. I commanded my companies to commence firing, which order was promptly executed. The firing was incessant on both sides for some moments, the rebels advancing and showing a disposition to drive us from the ridge. At this juncture I gave the command, which was repeated by Lieutenant-Colonel Kirkpatrick, to raise a yell, charge firing, and stop their advance. This was successfully performed. Their center gave way, which was soon followed by both wings, leaving us in possession of the ridge, and the enemy running in confusion. Being separated from our right, and the force of the enemy greatly outnumbering my own, I did not pursue, but held the ridge until I received your order to collect and care for my dead and wounded and join the remainder of the command which was done by nightfall.