patched to the left, with orders to move the Second Indiana over upon the Rossville road, and, if attacked, to hold the enemy in check until the rear of the infantry column had reached Chattanooga. This regiment arrived at Rossville about sunrise, and found that the place had been entirely abandoned except by a few stragglers, who were at once sent to the rear. As soon as the retrograde movement of the army was discovered, the enemy made a spirited attack upon the Second Indiana with cavalry and artillery in large force, threatening to cut off the infantry brigade of General Spears and the cavalry moving up the Valley road in the direction of Chattanooga. This regiment repulsed the enemy's cavalry and maintained their position under a heavy fire of grape and canister until re-enforced by the First Wisconsin.
By this time the column moving up the Chattanooga road had passed the intersection of the Rossville road, and both regiments were ordered to fall back across the creek into Chattanooga. This movement was executed in splendid order under a continuous and heavy fire from a largely superior force of the enemy. After bringing my command across Chattanooga Creek in safety, and finding that the enemy were advancing a heavy line of skirmishers through the woods, I ordered a sufficient force to dismount and deploy across the creek and hold the enemy in check, where they remained until the lines of the Twentieth Army Corps had been formed. My skirmishers were relieved by the infantry. The men and officers throughout displayed uniform good conduct, courage, and endurance, and are entitled to the thanks of the country for their soldierly bearing and firmness in the face of disaster that tried the nerves of the boldest. Although they knew our army had suffered disaster, if not defeat, and that they were surrounded by the enemy, there was no wavering, no haste; they retired from the field slowly and orderly, as though on parade.
List of casualties.- The First Brigade lost 3 enlisted men killed, 9 wounded, and 1 missing. The Second Brigade lost 1 enlisted man killed, 10 wounded, and 11 missing. The Third Brigade lost 5 commissioned officers and 211 men; making a total of 5 commissioned officers and 246 enlisted men killed, wounded, and missing.
In conclusion, I cannot speak too highly of the efficient manner in which Colonel Campbell, commanding First Brigade, and Colonel Ray, commanding Second Brigade, handled their commands and executed the orders given them. The gallant conduct of Captain Pratt, assistant adjutant-general; Lieutenant Miller, mustering officer; Major Helveti, inspector-general; Captain Hancock, Captain Mitchell, Captain Porter, and Lieutenant Cunningham, officers of my staff, and the prompt manner in which they performed their arduous duties throughout all the march, greatly contributed to our success.
I refer you to reports of brigade commanders herewith inclosed for information as to details.
I have the honor to be, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
EDWARD M. McCOOK,
Colonel, Commanding First Cavalry Division.
Major W. H. SINCLAIR,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Cavalry Corps.
57 R R-VOL XXX, PT I