War of the Rebellion: Serial 072 Page 0632 THE ATLANTA CAMPAIGN. Chapter L.

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During the 18th and 19th the division changed position several times in the general advance of our lines to the enemy's position near Kenesaw Mountain, and the skirmishing was frequently very sharp, particularly between a part of Morgan's brigade, which was ordered to drive in the enemy's skirmishers and to fell of his position on top of the mountain. This duty was gallantly done by the Sixtieth Illinois Regiment, commanded by Colonel Anderson. This demonstration, and the appearance of the troops at the base of the mountain while going into position, drew forth a heavy fire from the enemy's batteries on the summit and showed conclusively that he was there in force and strongly posted. The batteries of the division came into action, and during the remainder of the day contested the ground with good success. The troops were intrenched and field-works thrown up for the batteries during the night. The troops remained in this position with but little change until the night of the 25th, during which time sharp skirmishing frequently engaged the infantry, and fierce artillery contests sprang up between the contending batteries. In these encounters our batteries invariably manifested their superiority and discipline over that of the enemy. My command, except the batteries, was relieved by a division of the Sixteenth Corps, of the Army of the Tennessee, and moved during the night to the rear of our lines and bivouacked during the 26th in rear of General Stanley's division, of the Fourth Corps, preparatory to storming the enemy's works at some point near that place on the following morning. Being informed by Major-General Thomas of the distinguished duty for which my division had been designated, in company with Generals Stanley, Brannan, and Baird, I made a thorough reconnaissance of the enemy's works and selected the point of attack. The point selected was immediately in front of General Whitaker's brigade, of Stanley's division, of the Fourth Corps. The enemy's works here conforming to projecting point in the ridge, upon which his works were built, presented a salient angle, and, in the absence of abatis, fallen timber, and other obstructions which generally confront their works, this point seemed the most assailable. Early on the morning of the 27th the brigade commanders accompanied me to the ground and familiarized themselves with it. McCook's and Mitchell's brigades had been designated for this conspicuous duty, and at 8 o'clock were massed in an open field in rear of our breast-works (now occupied by Morgan's brigade as a reserve), some 600 yards from the point to be carried. No place nearer the enemy's line could the troops be massed without receiving the enemy's fire, both of infantry and artillery. The ground to be passed over was exceedingly rocky and rough, and considerable part of it covered with forest trees, interspersed with undergrowth. The signal was given a little before 9 o'clock, and the troops, following the example of their admired leaders, bounded over our own works, in the face of the enemy's fire, and rushed gallantly for the enemy, meeting and disregarding with great coldness the heavy fire, both of artillery and infantry, to which they were subjected, until the enemy's works were reached. Here, owing to exhaustion, produced by the too rapid execution of the movement, the exceedingly rough ground, and the excessive heat, the troops failed to leap and carry the works to which their noble daring and impetuous valor had carried them. McCook had fallen, dangerously wounded, and Harmon, next in rank, and assumed command, but fell immediately. Dilworth, the next senior in rank, promptly took command of the brigade, and