War of the Rebellion: Serial 055 Page 0652 KY.,SW. VA.,Tennessee,MISS.,N. ALA.,AND N. GA. Chapter XLIII.

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John E. Smith, commanding division, to move my brigade to the rear of the right wing of General Ewing's division. My acting assistant adjutant-general, R. A. McKee, was sent at once to find where my position would be. Marched by the left flank toward the railroad in the following order: Ninety-third Illinois, Twenty-sixth Missouri and Tenth Iowa. On reaching the point on the railroad where the Fifth Iowa was on picket I relieved the same, according to orders received, placing that regiment on my right. I marched the whole brigade by the front, facing west, until I arrived some underbrush below the open field. Here I halted. Lieutenant McKee returned with the orders from General Ewing to report to Colonel Loomis and form in the field along the fence facing Tunnel Hill and rest there. Hardly had my line formed, the left wing of which (Ninety-third Illinois and Twenty-sixth Missouri) being in shelter behind a little ridge, when the enemy's batteries opened on my right wing, which compelled me to move the same in rear of the left wing. Colonel Loomis then went to General Ewing for instructions, and returning, said, "The order for you is to move your brigade up and take that white house," pointing to a house that was standing below and in front of Tunnel Hill. My line was instantly formed and the "Old Ironsides" moved up to work. The enemy's batteries opened on us from three points, Tunnel Hill and the hills on the right and left of it. We had lost but 2 men as yet. A ditch running through the center of the field caused some trouble in crossing. The enemy now had a good range on us; the men were put on the double-quick, and we gained the foot of the ridge. The white house was on fire. A road leads along the foot of the hill toward the white house. Here my brave men rallied at once. I ordered the Fifth Iowa to take possession of the white house and grounds, with instructions to secure the front and flanks well by skirmishers. I sent the Tenth Iowa to the right with orders to secure the right flank. The Twenty-sixth Missouri and Ninety-third Illinois remained in the road 20 yards to the rear, to the left of the right wing. The white house was now in flames. The incessant fire of musketry and artillery from the hills forming a half circle around me, made this a hot place. Colonel Putnam said the regiments on the hill had sent down for re-enforcements; with them they could hold the hill. I ordered Colonel Putnam to move up cautiously, and sent Lieutenant McKee back across the field to report that the white house was set on fire by the enemy and was in flames; that I held that ground; that I had sent one regiment up the hill to re-enforce the Twenty-seventh Pennsylvania, the commanding officer of which thought he could hold it (the hill). Batteries plowed the ground around us. I ordered the Twenty-sixth Missouri to occupy the place when the Ninety-third Illinois had left, it being less exposed, and the Fifth and Tenth Iowa to keep close to the hill. Lieutenant McKee returned with the order to hold that hill if possible, and that another brigade was coming up to our assistance. I ordered at once the Twenty-sixth Missouri to advance up the hill and form in rear of the Ninety-third Illinois; next the Tenth Iowa to form on the right of Ninety-third Illinois; sent my aide, Lieutenant John Wright, to the colonel of Fifth Iowa to advance his skirmishers well to the front and right flank. These dispositions made, I ascended the hill, and on arriving there found the position as follows: Tenth Iowa on the left, Ninety-third Illinois and Twenty-sixth Missouri center, part of Twenty-seventh Pennsylvania between the Fifth Iowa and Ninety-third Illinois, to the extreme right