arms, &c. Wood's and Stanley's divisions, of Howard's corps, drove the enemy from two lines of outer works, capturing some prisoners, and developed a strong line of works still farther on and within three miles of Atlanta.
During the 21st there was considerable skirmishing along the entire line, our forces in the mean time crowding up to the rebel main line of works, which were quite formidable. During the night of the 21st the enemy fell back to the fortifications immediately encircling the city of Atlanta, and at an early hour on the 22nd I had disposed my troops confronting the new line of defenses taken up by him. Palmer's corps still held the right of my line, with his left resting near the Western and Atlantic Railroad, two and a half miles northwest of Atlanta, connecting at that point with General Hooker's corps, which latter continued the line around to the main Buck Head and Atlanta road where Howard's corps took it up, Howard's left connecting with General Schofield's army near Colonel Howard's house, on a road leading to Atlanta about one and a half miles southeast of the main Buck Head road. The position chosen by us was a strong one, and by night-fall of the 22nd had been greatly strengthened by earth-works, and it having been ascertained that from several points Atlanta could be reached with rifled artillery, orders were given to keep up a steady fire upon the town night and day. McCook's division of cavalry was crossed to the east side of the river and posted on the right of my army, along Proctor's Creek, extending over toward Mason and Turner's Ferry, on the Chattahoochee.
General Rouseaus' expedition reached Marietta on the 22nd from Opelika, where he had been sent to break the West Point and Montgomery Railroad. He left Decatur, Ala, on the 10th instant, with a mounted force numbering 2,500 men, and two pieces of artillery, and gives the result of his expedition as follows:
The whole length of railroad destroyed was over thirty miles, including a number of trestle bridges, a water-tank at Notasulga, the station buildings, &c., at Opelika, Auburn, Loachapoka, Notasulga, and considerable supplies and materials at each of those points.
The enemy, under General Clanton, was met at Ten Island Ford, on the Coosa River, where he endeavored to dispute the passage of the expedition, but after a spirited skirmish was driven off with some loss. Again, near Chehaw Station, the enemy made an effort to prevent the disablement of the railroad, but after sa stubborn resistance was obliged to retire, leaving in our hands about 40 of his dead and a large number of wounded. The command started from Opelika on the afternoon of the 19th to return, and, marching via Carrollton and Villa Rice, reached Marietta on the 22d, without meeting with any opposition. Although General Rousseau received his instructions direct from the major-general commanding the military division, the expedition having been made up from troops belonging to my command, I take the liberty of mentioning their operations officially, for a detailed account of which I respectfully refer you to the accompanying official report of Major-General Rousseau.
From the 22nd to the 28th of the month the position of my troops remained unchanged, with the exception that at some position of my troops was gained to the front, and the general line shortened. Good, permanent bridges were constructed across the Chattahoochee at Pace's Ferry, and at the railroad crossing, the pontoon bridges at those two points being taken up and placed in condition for future movements.