War of the Rebellion: Serial 050 Page 0564 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter XLII.

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Numbers 114.

Report of Colonel William W. Berry, Fifth Kentucky Infantry, commanding Third Brigade.


Chattanooga, September 27, 1863.

LIEUTENANT: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by this command in the battles of 19th and 20th instant:

The brigade is composed of the following regiments: Fifth Kentucky First and Ninety-third Ohio, and Sixth Indiana Volunteer Infantry, together with the Fifth Indiana Battery Captain Simonson.

Moving, on the morning of the 19th instant, from our bivouac, 4 miles west of Crawfish Spring, to the extreme left of the army, 3 miles east of the Spring, the brigade, Colonel P. P. Baldwin commanding, took position on the left of General Willich's command, the formation being in two lines; the First Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Langdon commanding, on the right, and the Fifth Kentucky, colonel Berry commanding, on the left of the front line; and the Sixtgh Indiana, Lieutenant-colonel Tripp commanding, on the right, and the Ninety-third Ohio, Colonel Strong, on the left of the second line; the battery in the rear. The ground in our front was heavily timbered and had been fought over before we reached it. The advance was sounded, and in a few moments the skirmishers were engaged. A battery of the enemy's opened on us, but was soon silenced by Simonson. Advancing steadily, a portion of the time on the double-quick, we drove the enemy a full mile, thus occupying ground farther to the front than the Federal forces had yet held. At this point, with an open field in our front, the brigade was halted, maintaining its original formation. Scarcely half an hour elapsed before the enemy advanced with infantry and artillery and attacked with his usual vigor. So far outflanked that we were almost enveloped, colonel Baldwin ordered the Ninety-third Ohio to deploy on the left of the Fifth Kentucky. In a few moments Colonel Strong was wounded. The Ninety-third staggered slightly under the blow, when colonel Baldwin, riding up with the cry, "Rally round the flag, boys!" seized the colors and ordered the regiment to charge, which was done with a will, and so effectually that the enemy fled, leaving two guns in our possession, one of which was brought away by the Ninety-third Regiment, but the other was so knocked to pieces by Simonson's shells that it was impossible to move tit. The Fifth Kentucky and First Ohio, standing stock-still, swept their front as with a broom. In the meantime the Sixth Indiana, having been deployed on the left of the original line, moved up on the double-quick, and successfully engaged the enemy, who was thus driven entirely from our portion of the field. There was perfect quiet for an hour and a half, and then burst upon us one of the most furious assaults of this or any other battle; but the brigade drove the enemy completely from its front and ceased firing. Just here the regiment on the right of the First Ohio broke, and in a moment the enemy was on the flank of that regiment, which fell back and formed on the right of the Sixth Indiana, which had some time before this been ordered to the rear to support the battery. Simonson coolly extricated his pieces with the exception of one, which in the crowded state of affairs became entangled in the top of a fallen tree and was abandoned.