War of the Rebellion: Serial 050 Page 0504 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLII.

Search Civil War Official Records

hours against a superior force, the division began to fall back, according to my observation, in very good order. I immediately determined to retire the Second Minnesota Battery and a section of an Indiana battery, then on the left of the Minnesota battery, slowly and in line with the troops, about 250 yards across the only open ground in our rear. An unforeseen and very unnecessary circumstance prevented the accomplishment of my purpose. The drivers and men of the section of the Indiana battery alluded to became panic-stricken, and stampeded with their caissons and gun

limbers through the Second Minnesota Battery, endangering the safety of its guns, very nearly causing the loss of the left section. I am indebted to the courage and coolness of Lieutenant Harder for its safety.

After a brief consultation with the lamented Colonel Heg, commanding Third Brigade, I ordered Lieutenant Woodbury to put his guns in position on the right of the new line and again engage the enemy which was promptly done. A few minutes later Colonel Heg was mortally wounded and Lieutenant Woodbury was disabled by a severe wound in the left arm. About this time General Davis' division was relieved by General Wood, when, in accordance with instructions, I retired the Second Minnesota, Battery out of range.

I have heard of a report that an occasional shell from the Second Minnesota Battery wounded men in General Carlin's brigade. Of my own knowledge the statement is unfounded; in fact, in the course of the engagement General Carlin rode up to me, a little to the left and in front of the battery, and stated that he had extended his lines partially across the front of the battery; that his men were occupying an undulation in the ground about 100 yards distant, and remarked, "If your fire is well directed it can do no harm to my troops." I immediately pointed out General Carlin's line to Lieutenant Woodbury, and to each lieutenant commanding sections and ordered that all firing over them should be at a range not less than 700 or 800 yards; also I rode up to the commanding officer of a battery that had just gone in to position on my right and pointed out to him General Carlin's line, and cautioned him against firing into his men. At this juncture the section of the Indiana Battery heretofore alluded to commenced firing. I rode up to the lieutenant commanding it, told him our own troops were immediately in front of him, and as, from his position, he could not see the enemy, I ordered him to cease firing. From this time up to the moment the division was retired I remained near the guns of the Second Minnesota Battery, watched closely the movements of the troops in front, and directed the fire of the battery. I repeat, of my own knowledge, not one man of our own was injured by shot or shell from my guns. I did think an occasional shot from other guns lodged in or near our lines, and so reported to a lieutenant of the battery on my right.

Early in the morning of the 20th General Davis was ordered to occupy a position as a reserve, and the Second Minnesota and Eighth Wisconsin Batteries were assigned positions covering the Chattanooga road and did not fire over half a dozen shots during the day. After the divisions of General Davis and General Sheridan had been repulsed, and it had become evident to General Davis that the infantry could not be rallied for the support of his batteries, he ordered them retired out of range of the enemy's guns, himself remaining on the field with the hope that something might still be done to retrieve the fortunes of the right wing. When I drew off my batteries I found