Augusta road to the east, and his left well toward Turner's Ferry, on the Chattahoochee, at a general distance from Atlanta of about four miles. On the morning of the 22nd somewhat to my surprise this whole line was found abandoned, and I confess I thought the enemy had resolved to give us Atlanta without further contest, but General Johnston had been relieved of his command and General Hood substituted. A new policy seemed resolved on, of which the bold attack on our right was the index. Our advancing ranks swept across the strong an well- finished parapets of the enemy and closed in upon Atlanta until we occupied parapets of the enemy and closed in upon Atlanta until we occupied a line in the form of a general circle of about two miles radius, when we again found him occupying in force aline of finished redoubts which had been prepared for more than a year, covering all the roads leading into Atlanta, and we found him also busy in connecting those redoubts with curtains, strengthened by rifle- trench abatis and chevaux- de- frise.
General McPherson, who had advanced from Decatur, continued to follow substantially the railroad, with the Fifteenth Corps, General Logan; the Seventeenth, General Blair,on its left; and the Sixteenth, General Dodge,on its right, but as the general advance of all the armies contracted the circle, the Sixteenth Corps, General Dodge, was thrown out of line by the Fifteenth connecting on its right with General Schofield, near the Howard house. General McPherson the night before had gained a high hill to the south and east of the railroad, where the Seventeenth Corps had, after a severe fight, driven the enemy, and it gave him a most commanding position within easy view of the very heart of the city. He had thrown out working parties to it and was making preparations to occupy it in strength with batteries. The Sixteenth Corps, General Dodge's, was ordered from right to left to occupy this position and make it a strong general left flank. General Dodge was moving by a diagonal path or wagon track leading from the Decatur road in the direction of General Blair[s left flank, About 10 a. m. I was in person, with General Schofield, examining the appearance of the enemy's line opposite the distillery, where we attacked enough of the enemy's fire of artillery and musketry to satisfy me the enemy was in Atlanta in force and meant to fight, and had gone to a large dwelling close by, known as the Howard house, where General McPherson joined me. He described the condition of things on his flank and the disposition of his troops. I explained to him the if we met serious resistance in Atlanta, as present appearances indicated, instead of operating against it by the left. I would extend to the right, and that I did not want him to gain much distance to the left. He then described the hill occupied by General Leggett's division, of General Blair's corps, as essential to the occupation of any ground to the east and south of the Augusta railroad on account of its commanding nature. I therefore ratified his disposition of troops, and modified a previous order I had sent him in writing to use General Dodge's corps, thrown somewhat in reserve by the closing g up of our line, to break up railroad, and I sanctioned its going as already ordered by general McPherson, to his left, to hold and fortify that position. The general remained a movement of the enemy on that flank, he mounted an rode away with his staff.
I must here also state that the day before I had detached General Garrard's cavalry to go to Covington,on the Augusta road, fort- two miles east of Atlanta, and from that point to send detachments to