War of the Rebellion: Serial 051 Page 0482 KY.,SW.VA.,TENN.,MISS.,N.ALA., AND N.GA. Chapter XLII.

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in front of my line, my men did not fire upon them. Ten minutes before 11 o'clock the command "forward" was given. My regiment was on the left of the brigade. We advanced but a short distance before we encountered the enemy's line of skirmishers. I did not meet the fire from the main line until I crossed the Chattanooga road. On crossing the road my regiment entered an open field to the left of the ---- house, the right of the regiments passing near a garden. The field that the regiment was now in was about 220 yards wide. There was a slight elevation about the center where my regiment crossed the field. The fire became terrific about the time we reached the center of the field. My men scarcely made a stop at this place, although the enemy was lying his fortifications within 100 yards of us, and the right brigade on my left gave way and fell back to the road. The enemy immediately in our front left their works and fled. Nearly all my men directed their fire to the left until the enemy gave way in that direction. We met with but a feeble resistance from the infantry in our front after this, during the first part of this day's fighting.

I lost in this first field 12 or 15 men wounded, some of them badly. We pursued the enemy closely through a large woodland. The number of his killed and wounded in this wood showed how well our boys had aimed. In passing out of this wood and by a house surrounded by a small field, we received a heavy fire from the enemy's battery in the large field. We passed through another piece of wood and then into the open ground near the ---- house. The regiment took several prisoners between this place and the bald hill, where we halted and reformed. When we halted on this bald ridge, which overlooks the big hollow, I sent forward Lieutenant McCullough with some men to reconnoiter the hollow. He soon came back and reported a very prominent road and a telegraph line down in the hollow not more than 200 yards in front of us. I directed to cut the wire at once. While we remained here my men, who were out in front, captured several prisoners. Among the number was a staff officer of Major-General Van Cleve and one of General Rosecrans' escort, with their horses and equipments.

On leaving our position on the bald hill, the command was given to change direction to the right. In sweeping around, the left of my regiment touched the road above alluded to in the hollow, which I learned was the Chattanooga and Crawfish Spring road. On completing the movement our line stood perpendicular to our original line, and, in passing forward upon the hollow, my left passed along the road up to the Vidito house, where the road turned to the left. Close around the Vidito house a number of ordnance wagons, caissons, and one Napoleon gun were abandoned by the enemy; also one quartermaster's wagon capsized, which I discovered, on visiting the place three days afterward, had an iron safe in it. In marching up the hollow to this house we had no troops at all on my left, nor any in my rear that were in sight. There were also a number of Federal wounded at the Vidito house.

Permit me do digress a little from the main subject to relate one of the most touching incidents that I ever witnessed. Four very nice looking ladies were lying in a little hole under the kitchen floor, where they had been ever since the fight commenced on Saturday, to shield themselves from the insults and dangers of the vandal foe. Mr. Vidito, it appears, was in the house watching the progress of events through the cracks. Just as we passed the house he