First Iowa Battery, on the hill to the right of the gap, to shell the enemy, who were firing upon our bridge builders. Between 8 and 9 a.m. the enemy could be seen coming from their camp on the hill-side and getting behind their breastworks and in rifle-pits.
They came in small squads at a time, and I directed a few shells to be thrown at them, and also at some who had taken position behind the railroad, and were annoying our men who were constructing the bridge.
I was also desirous of obtaining the correct range in order to shell them effectually in their rear, should they contest General Geary's advance. At 11 a.m. General Geary's advance came in sight, the batteries opened at once, exploding shells directly in the rifle-pits and breastworks. The fire of Batteries K, First Ohio, from Bald Hill, and I, First New York, at this time was excellent. The enemy made but a short stand, being apparently completely surprised by the movement of General Geary, many surrendering at once, and others running from their works, retreating rapidly, at which the batteries threw a few shells. The troops advanced so rapidly I ordered the batteries to cease firing, but Captain Wiedrich, failing to observe my signal in time, continued his fire a few movements longer, from which I fear a few of our men were injured.
Our lines continuing to advance, and swinging round the base of the hill, soon drove the enemy completely beyond our sight and range.
The batteries of General Osterhaus' division* returned to their camp early in the evening, but deeming an attack from the rebels in the rear and an attempt to cross the bridge possible, by direction of Major-General Butterfield I replaced the section of howitzers, Lieutenant Williams' battery [First Iowa], in position on the hill in the rear of the bridge to protect it; also, in accordance with General Butterfield's orders, directed the batteries to cross the creek at daylight on the morning of the 25th, and reported in person to Major-General Hooker at daybreak. By his direction I rode to the front of our lines on Lookout to select positions for artillery. Upon arriving I was informed by General Geary the enemy had left. At 11 a.m. an advance was ordered by General Hooker, and I directed the batteries to follow. Arriving at Chattanooga Creek, the bridge having been destroyed, we were detained three hours in its construction. After crossing the creek General Hooker ordered the artillery to move with General Geary's division, which was to move up the west side of Missionary Ridge.
I directed Captain Landgreaber's battery (horse artillery) to take the advance, and such was the rapidity of General Geary's movements, and the impetuosity of his command in the advance, that the artillery had to trot, and several times force their horses into a gallop-to keep pace with the advance of his column. The enemy were apparently terror stricken at our approach and rapidly fled, though twice we came up in time to throw a few shells at their retreating columns. Once they apparently determined to make a stand on the top of the ridge, but a few well-directed shells from the battery soon dispersed them.
The advance was continued until uniting with General Palmer's lines just before dusk, when we were ordered to camp.
*The First Iowa and Fourth Ohio Batteries, and Battery F, Second Missouri Artillery.