Under other circumstances it might be proper for me to make a more elaborate and detailed report of the part taken by my command in the terrible conflict of Sunday, but as my troops fought under the eye of the major-general commanding the corps, I have deemed it proper to just briefly state in general terms the prominent features of the engagements.
I respectfully submit herewith a tabular statement* of the killed, wounded, and missing in my command, together with statements+ of the losses in the quartermaster's and ordnance departments. With esteem, respectfully submitted.
JAMES B. STEEDMAN,
Brigadier-General, Comdg. First Division, Reserve Corps.
Major J. S. FULLERTON,
Report of Brig. General Walter C. Whitaker, U. S. Army, commanding First Brigade.
HDQRS. FIRST BRIG., FIRST DIV., RESERVE CORPS, September 28, 1863.
SIR: On the 18th of September, 1863, I was ordered by Major-General Granger to proceed with my command, the First Brigade, First Division, Reserve Corps, composed as follows: Ninety-sixth Illinois, Colonel Moore commanding; Eighty-fourth Indiana, Colonel Trusler; Fortieth Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Jones commanding, to occupy the bridge over the Chickamauga, on the Ringgold road from Rossville, if it could be done without bringing on a general engagement.
At 4 p.m. I took up the line of march, and had progressed about 3 miles, when, crossing Spring Creek, or Little Chickamauga, the advance was fired upon the enemy. The skirmishers of the Ninety-sixth Illinois and one section of Aleshire's [Eighteenth Ohio] battery engaged the enemy and drove him before them with some loss, losing 1 killed and 3 wounded. Night terminated the skirmish.
Having good reason to believe during the night that the rebels were changing their position to the rear of my command, I changed position, occupying the hills at McAfee's Church.
On the morning of the 19th, being ordered by the general commanding the division to maintain my position, skirmishers were sent forward from the Eighty-fourth Indiana, under Major Neff, supported by the regiment, who very spiritedly skirmished up to the camp of the enemy and fired into their camp. They were found to be infantry, mounted infantry, and cavalry in considerable force, supported by artillery, and occupying the south side of the Chickamauga. The skirmishers retired with some loss to their support, and rested upon the bank of the Little Chickamauga. The country [is] covered with heavy undergrowth, with few fields intervening. About 1 p.m. the rebels in large force made an attack upon the Eighty-
*See inclosure to Granger's report, p. 858.