War of the Rebellion: Serial 055 Page 0509 Chapter XIIII. THE CHATTANOOGA-RINGGOLD CAMPAIGN.

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phere seemed filled with the messengers of death, and shells burst in every direction. It was continued until the guns were captured, but owing, no doubt, to the great depression under which they were fired our loss was far less than might have been expected. Looking toward the right, I saw that General Turchin had passed the line of rifle-pits and was well up on his way to the top of the ridge. Two of his flags, surrounded by a group of the bravest spirits, had passed the rest, and remained for some time perched upon the side of the mountain, quite near its top. I saw, however, that the troops on the right had halted near the rifle-pits, contrary to my understanding when I have him his instructions, and that he was unsupported. I was in the act of starting forward my other two brigades for this purpose when I received orders not to permit my men to go farther, and not to permit them to become engaged. I was at this much perplexed as to how I should best withdraw General Turchin. It was only, however, momentary, as another order came in less than three minutes for the whole line to charge to the top. This order having been communicated, all of both my lines leaped forward with a shout and rushed up the mountain side. The ridge, more or less steep and difficult throughout, was particularly so in my front, but those striking the more accessible points, and the strongest men and the bravest men, soon passed to the front. Regimental organizations became somewhat deranged, and presented rather the appearance of groups gathering around the colors, which they pushed onward and upward through the storm of bullets.

I cannot too strongly commend to the major-general commanding the heroic gallantry of the officers and men of the division in this charge, which has few parallels in my reading of wars. To say less than this would be unjust to those brave men; to say more might seem out of place, since it occurred under the eye of the general himself. I rode up myself to the interval between the First and Second Brigades, and for a time portions of the line were concealed from my view, but I have taken great pains to collect evidence of what transpired, and it is herewith transmitted. The march of General Turchin's brigade was directed upon a prominent knob on which there were several pieces of artillery, and a small house to the left used afterward as a hospital. It may be recognized readily by these marks. This I believe to be the first point carried by my command. It is difficult to determine questions of slight precedence in point of time in a rivalry of this nature, and, where all act nobly, they are unimportant. The second brigade in line going from my troops toward the right-perhaps that of General Willich-may possibly have reached its point of aim a little before mine reached theirs, and soon after opened communication with us. The intermediate brigade came up a little later. I mention the first knob taken by General Turchin's command particularly, as marking the extreme point toward the right carried by this division. It was strongly defended by the enemy, who were driven from it by the Eleventh, Thirty-first, and Thirty-sixth Ohio Regiments, and three guns captured. From this point to the left every foot that was gained was due to the stubborn fighting of the men of this division, who drove the enemy steadily before them, and whatever captures were here made are the proper trophies of their valor. Colonel Van Derveer's brigade reached the crest a little to the left of the knob taken by General Turchin, and Colonel Phelps' brigade a little farther yet that direction.