War of the Rebellion: Serial 050 Page 0555 Chapter XLII. THE CHICKAMAUGA CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

line, and seeing that the enemy were will sheltered, while my command was badly exposed to their fire, and my men being comparatively fresh, I ordered a charge. The whole column had previously deployed into line, that having been necessary in order to keep from making too wide an opening between my left and the right of General Willich's brigade.

The order was most gallantly obeyed by both officers and men, and the enemy gave way in utter rout and confusion. In this charge the Twenty-ninth Indiana was on the right, the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania next, the Seventy-ninth Illinois next, and the Thirtieth Indiana on the left. We drove them in this manner nearly or quite 1 mile (some officers think farther), when, finding that my line was getting broken in consequence of losses in killed and wounded, and that I had no support on either flank, I ordered a halt. On this charge my command passed some 30 or 40 yards to the right of a battery belonging to the enemy, which was nearly deserted by them, and a part of which was captured by one of the other brigades to my left (General Willich's, I believe). I then reformed my command in its original order and moved about 400 yards to my left and rear, and formed a connection with the right of General Willich's brigade, refusing my right slightly so, as to protect my flank as much as possible, and threw out a heavy line of skirmishers in my front and on my flank. There was no force (of ours on my right in sight, and I was fearful that the enemy would attack us on that flank.

In order to be certain, about 4 p.m. I sent out a detachment under Lieutenant-Colonel Pyfer, Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania, to examine

the position of the enemy, if possible, and to ascertain the position of the nearest troops on our own line. He reported a heavy picket force of the enemy about 500 yards to my front and right, and that it was about three-fourths of a mile from my right to the left of General Turchin's brigade, and that his were the nearest of our troops on that flank. I strengthened my line of pickets, and made all the preparations possible to resist an attack from that quarter. Just before dark the enemy made an attack some distance to my left, and gradually swept round to my front, when I was informed that a heavy column was moving directly against my flank. It was now quite dark, so that it was impossible to distinguish any person a few feet off. I immediately withdrew my battery to the rear, just in time to save it, as this column swept round on my right and rear, delivering at the same time a very heavy fire, and capturing nearly the whole of the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania and about one-half of the Seventy-ninth Illinois. A large portion of the men succeeded, in the confusion and darkness, in making their excape, but Colonel Rose, Lieutenant-Colonel Pyfer, and Major Phillips, all of the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania, and Major Fitysimmons, of the Thirtieth Indiana, who had previously been wounded, but was near the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania, together with quite a number of line officers, were captured or wounded so that they were unable to get away.

My second line returned their fire and held their position. I was as yet not aware of the extent of the loss of my brigade, owing to the darkness, and while endeavoring to move my left more to the front got into the enemy's lines and was taken prisoner, but succeeded in making my escape, and on my return found that my brigade, with the rest of the division, was being withdrawn from its perilous position, as it was almost entirely surrounded by a force