road leading from Atlanta to Jonesborough and fortified our position, the skirmish line reaching the Macon railroad.
September 1 at 10 a.m. the whole command was on the march toward Jonesborough, and at 3 p.m. we were formed in line of battle in front of and about half a mile from the enemy's fortified position on the railroad, north of the town, the Seventy-eighth Illinois and Ninety-eighth Ohio forming the front line, the enemy's works presenting to us two fronts running at right angles to each other, with one battery in the angle and another farther to his left, the center of our line being opposite the angle. The order was given to advance to a knoll some 300 yards in front of his works, which was done under a severe fire of shot and shell. Resting here a few minutes, the men lying flat on the ground, the order was again give to advance, quick time, and commence firing. As the men rose up and passed over the crest of the knoll a terrible fire of shell, grape-shot, and musketry was opened upon the line. Major Green was among the first to receive a wound, which compelled him to leave the field. The men were now falling at every step, yet their brave comrades pressed steadily forward, ready to meet death rather than defeat; in a few minutes the left (as the line came up obliquely) reached and passed over the enemy's works, forcing him to surrender and pass to our rear. In front of the right wing the continued to work his artillery with terrible effect, until, either killed or borne down at the point of the bayonet, he fired his last piece, double-charged with grape, when my two right companies, A and D, were less than ten paces from it, and two-thirds of the regiment inside his works; but at last, being overpowered, he yielded a stubborn resistance. The victory was complete. We carried his entire line of works from where the left first struck it to the crest of a ridge, where his line made another angle, a distance greater than the front of the regiment, capturing 1 brigadier-general and a number of field and line officers. The loss in the regiment was very heavy, 13 killed on the field and 69 wounded; 3 died on the following morning. Of the officers Captain R. M. Black, Company D, and First Lieutenant D. W. Long, Company G, were both killed, gallantly leading their companies in the charge. Major George Green received a severe wound in the left arm. I cannot speak too highly of the conduct of both officers and men in this engagement. To particularize would be invidious where all did so well. The second line, the Thirty-fourth Illinois and One hundred and twenty-first Ohio Volunteer Infantry, now coming up, held the position against a fierce endeavor by the enemy to retake the guns. The regiment was now formed in the rear, and during the night the wounded were carried back and the dead collected and buried on the field where they fell. On the following morning, September 2, we marched into Jonesborough, and soon after received the news of the evacuation of Atlanta by the enemy and the glorious termination of the campaign.
In conclusion, I commend to an honorable mention the officers and men of the regiment. The battles, sieges, marches, and privations they have endured, through heat and through storm, entitles them to the just gratitude and honor to their country.
I am, captain, with must respect, your obedient servant,
M. R. VERNON,
Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Regiment.
Captain J. S. WILSON,
Asst. Adjt. General, 2nd Brigadier, 2nd Div., 14th Army Corps.