War of the Rebellion: Serial 051 Page 0516 KY., SW. VA., TENN.,MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA.

Search Civil War Official Records


farther out in the direction of the enemy than it did upon our immediate right or left, and we were thus cover by the timber in our advance some 200 yards farther forward than our friends on our flanks. Our number being thus hid from the view of the enemy, the impression prevailed among them, both upon the right and left of us, that they were flanked, and, after delivering a feeble fire into our flanks, they fled a across the field to the cover of the woods beyond, and it was with the greatest difficulty that our men could be held back from their pursuit.

After a time Major Rogers, assisted by Captain Cleveland, succeeded in getting the regiment in line on the side of a ravine running near and parallel to the field. Here we remained for an hour or more, the enemy giving us occasional volleys from their small-arms and throwing over us charge upon charge of grape and canister. WE held them in check, preventing any forward movement in our immediate front or flanks, and we thus remained until ordered to fall back, Major Rogers having sent repeatedly in the meantime to notify our friends upon our left of our position. After falling back some 250 yards we were halted, and in a short time the enemy advanced and showed themselves about 50 yards off. Major Rogers ordered us to charge, and we threw ourselves upon them at a run, the enemy falling back in great disorder. The men followed the fleeing enemy to a ravine in the field, the brave Major Rogers all the time urging them forward, until he saw that our friends had failed to come up upon our right and left, when the order was reluctantly given to fall back. We were here exposed, in going in and returning to an incessant shower of grape and canister from a battery on the opposite side of the field.

It was in falling back from this field to our original position that the gallant Major Rogers fell from a severe wound, and the regiment in thus deprived for a time of the services of one of its best officers. In this last charge the regiment sustained its greatest loss in men and officers.

On falling back under cover of the woods Captain Cleveland reformed the regiment and ordered Lieutenant Fuller forward with some 12 or 15 men, who held the ground until our wounded were removed. This was about 6 o'clock, and we were ordered back some 150 yards, where we lay in line of battle until the next morning (September 20).

At daylight on this morning (20th), we were aroused and remained drawn up in line for some time, when we were moved by the right flank about half a mile, where we were held in line of battle until about 10 a.m., when we were ordered to lie down to allow Polk's corps to pass over us to the front, but they never appeared on that portion of the field. We remained thus until about 11 a.m. a spirited fire being kept up upon our right and left, when we were ordered up and forward, there being, as we were told, two lines of battle (Confederate) in front. Captain Cleveland, previous to our advance, addressed a few encouraging words to the regiment and placed himself in front of the colors, where he remained as long as I saw him.

We were moved forward in quick-time across a wooded flat, and, before we gained the hill beyond, the enemy hailed down upon us a perfect shower of shot and shell; but we pressed forward, and just after crossing a small field we found the enemy's first line of breastworks, but we encountered no one here, the enemy having fled