Gregg's brigade had moved up with my line, and they had retired. Lieutenant-Colonel Tillman had thus lost sight of his regiment, and in company with him and Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd I started to the road to satisfy myself as to the correctness of this report. I had gone but a short distance when I discovered a column of the enemy moving by the flank in direction of the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, which rapidly gained its rear. I heard distinctly the commands "halt," "front," and immediately their fire was pouring upon our flank and rear. Here a general stampede ensued, so sudden and unexpected was the movement. We fall back 200 yards in rear of the Chattanooga and La Fayette road and reformed.
In this flank movement of the enemy, the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment lost 11 officers, including their gallant major (Davis), who was wounded, and about 60 men taken prisoners.
The brigade built temporary breastworks, behind which it remained during the night in line of battle. Our skirmishers, under Major McCarver, were directed to occupy the Chattanooga, and La Fayette road, but this could not be done, the lines on my right and left not conforming thereto. I, however, instructed them to be posted within 50 yards of the road.
Sunday, September 20.- This morning my line connected on the right with McNair's (Gregg being in the next line in our rear) and General Hindman's on the left. Everett's battery took position between my left and the right of Hindman.
Shortly after 9 a.m. the skirmishers, under direction of Lieutenant-Colonel Ready, fell back to the breastworks, bringing those of the enemy after them. A well-directed fire from the
Forty-fourth Tennessee drove the enemy's skirmishers back, leaving many of his dead in our front. My skirmishers were sent forward and very soon they became again engaged, the enemy using his artillery.
About 10 a.m. a general advance was ordered. The left of the brigade had advanced but a short distance before it became engaged with the enemy, the battle having commenced some three hours earlier on the right. The Seventeenth Tennessee recrossed the Chattanooga and La Fayette road, where it engaged the enemy. The whole line crossing the fence, the engagement became general. Here we passed a house and garden and through an open field. It was here that Lieutenant-Colonel Ready, of the Twenty-third Tennessee, was wounded while rushing forward.
On entering the house, cribs, &c., many prisoners, both officers and men, were captured, and here some fine swords were taken from the enemy. Among the prisoners was the colonel of the One hundredth Illinois Regiment. The enemy's breastworks, which had been built at intervals along his line, offered but a poor assistance to the enemy to resist our advance, which was not only vigorous and spirited, but irresistible. We found he had a second line of breastworks, about 80 yards in rear of the first, made of logs and rocks, behind which they scarcely halted. Having driven the enemy from his first position, we halted and reformed our line in front of a dense, low, pine thicket. Pressing forward we carried this position, the dead of the enemy showing how good a protection had calculated on. We passed through a stubble wheat-field to a ravine until we reached the edge of a long open field, the upper side of which being a bald hill or high ridge, upon which the enemy had a heavy battery of nine guns firing upon the advancing line on our right.
Without delay the field was entered and charged across, and the