The great change in regimental commanders that has taken place (the adjutant having been killed and myself having taken command only at the conclusion of the campaign) renders it impossible to make this report more complete.
A complete report of casualties for the campaign is herewith respectfully submitted.*
I am, captain, your obedient servant,
ELI F. RITTER,
Captain, Commanding Seventy-ninth Regiment Indiana Foot Vols.
Captain WILLIAM S. S. ERB,
Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, 3rd Brigadier, 3rd Div., 4th Army Corps.
Report of Colonel George F. Dick, Eighty-sixth Indiana Infantry.
HEADQUARTERS EIGHTY-SIXTH INDIANA VOLUNTEERS,
Near Atlanta, GA., September 12, 1864.
SIR: In compliance with orders received from your headquarters, I have the honor to submit the following as a report of the operations of my regiment during the campaign just close, commencing May 3, 1864:
On May 3, 1864, the regiment left McDonald's Station, Tenn., and marched with the command southward, reaching Catoosa Springs, Ga., on the following day, a distance of about fifteen miles. Remained bivouacked here until the morning of the 7th, when I again marched with the command and occupied Tunnel Hill. On the 8th formed in line and moved off into the valley separating Tunnel Hill and Rocky Face Ridge, where constant and heavy skirmishing was kept up until the morning of the 13th, when it was ascertained that the enemy had evacuated his position and was in full retreat. Immediately ordered in pursuit, I marched with the command, coming upon the enemy had evacuated his position and was in full retreat. Immediately ordered in pursuit, I marched with the command, coming upon the enemy at Resaca, fifteen miles south of Dalton. At this place the enemy halted to give battle, but my regiment was not called into action, though was held in supporting distance during the two days' battle which raged at Resaca the 14th and 15th of May. The morning of the 16th dawned finding the enemy had retired. The command being again, ordered in pursuit I followed, pressing the enemy's rear closely, the skirmishing at times assuming proportions almost equal to a battle, until reaching Cassville, Ga., which was on the 19th of May. At Cassville orders were received that the army would rest and replenish until the morning of the 23rd of May, when it would again march with twenty days' rations. Accordingly, on the 23d, the command moved out, going in a direction nearly due south. Crossed the Etowah River and continued the march until reaching Pumpkin Vine Creek, a small stream in the Allatoona range of mountains. Here it was ascertained that a portion of the Union force had met the enemy and that an engagement had already commenced. On the 26th the regiment was formed in line of battle with the brigade, and with it maneuvered until the evening of the 27th of May, when we became actively engaged. My regiment being on the extreme right of the brigade, I was ordered to halt with a view of protecting that flank.
*Nominal list (omitted) shows 1 officer and 15 men killed; 2 men died of wounds, 5 officers and 45 men wounded, and 1 officer captured; total, 69.