War of the Rebellion: Serial 072 Page 0306 THE ATLANTA CAMPAIGN.

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Wisconsin, and Seventy-third Illinois, all under immediate charge of Colonel J. Conrad, of the Fifteenth Missouri, and the brigade placed in position, with the Eighty-eighth Illinois on the left of the road, and Forty-fourth, Seventy-fourth, and Thirty-sixth Illinois Regiments on the right of it. Four guns of Goodspeed's battery came up and were so posted at the road as to well cover the front and each side. Colonel Blake, commanding the Second Brigade, came up promptly and was placed in position by me, his right connecting with my left, and extending to the left on a prolongation of my line, with his left retired. The left of the Twentieth Corps had at this time crossed the Peach Tree Creek, but had not come up, so my right was entirely uncovered. Arms were stacked in line and every man fell to work with the greatest activity to throw up breast-works for themselves and the battery; but these were hardly commenced when, at 3 p. m., a rapid firing was heard on our picket-line in my front; my skirmishers were driven in, closely followed by the enemy in two lines of battle, charging with great confidence with a rapidity and an absence of confusion I have never seen equaled. My men seized their guns and formed to resist the enemy's advance. He was repulsed with terrible loss in our front, but his lines were soon discovered to extend far beyond my right. To attack the left of the Twentieth Corps he passed my right flank, and the Seventy-third Illinois, which had been driven in from the picket-line, was founded nearly at right angles with the front line to cover and protect it. When the enemy had been repulsed by the left of the Twentieth Corps he was obliged in retiring to expose himself to an enfilading fire from this regiment. This fire was so deadly that great numbers of the rebels covered themselves in a small ravine and were captured by the Twentieth Corps, which followed them closely until opposite the right of my line. At the same time the enemy passed my right the sound of artillery and musketry in rear of the left of Colonel Blake's brigade showed that the enemy's lines extended also beyond our left, and that there was great danger of being cut off from the bridge over the Peach Tree Creek and surrounded, but no man left his post. Repulsed at every point were where he had met Union troops, the enemy fell back, and reforming his lines, made another desperate attempt to drive us from our position, but which no better success than before. Still he kept up a rapid fire, and seemed persistent in his efforts to find a weak point through which he could force his way, until about 6 o'clock, when he retired, leaving most of his dead and wounded where they fell. Had the enemy recovered possession of the hill on which Colonel Blake's and my own brigades were posted, he would have been able to command the plain over which the left of the Twentieth Corps was moving and to enfilade the position to be taken by it, and the desperate efforts made by him to retake the hill are indicated by the loss of many officers of high rank in close proximity to our lines. The troops which attacked our position were Bate's Walker's, and of Cheatham's divisions, esteemed among the best in the rebel service, and prisoners relate that no doubt whatever was felt that we would be swept from the ridge by their superior numbers, or, remaining, would be easily captured by their turning our left and cutting us off from the crossing of the Peach Tree Creek. During the night succeeding the action the enemy was actively engaged with a large removing his dead now wounded from such parts of the field near our lines as he could approach in the darkness, but he desisted at daybreak, leaving