War of the Rebellion: Serial 073 Page 0133 Chapter L. REPORTS, ETC.-ARMY OF THE CUMBERLAND.

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upon the hill gained by my skirmishers. I at one set to work fortifying my new position, which was upon an important and commanding ridge, completely developing to our view the disposition of the enemy. Perceiving the great importance of the place, I immediately communicated its capture to Major-General Hooker, who came in person. He directed me to hold the place at every hazard. I at once set about reversing the enemy's works and throwing up such others as were necessary to cover my whole command in single line, including the artillery. Whilst in this position the enemy opened at tremendous cannonade, which was not permitted to interrupt the prosecution of the work. From prisoners captured by my advanced posts I learned that Hood's and Hardee's corps were massed at no great distance in my front. This was also communicated to the major-general commanding corps, who without delay advanced Butterfield's division to the ridge on my left and Williams' to a corresponding ridge on my right, but separated by a deep ravine and low ground. Skirmishing, almost amounting to battle, continued during the morning, our lines gaining ground. My works were scarcely completed when, to close a gap between me and Williams, I ordered the Second Brigade to extend still farther to the right, reaching to the ravine before mentioned, posting in this new line on a small knoll the Thirteenth New York Battery, the ground in front consisting of cleared field with gradual slope. The brigade had scarcely extended to the point designated when a furious attack burst upon Williams, driving in his pickets and engaging his main body. The pickets of the First Division being driven in, the flank of my line was completely exposed, which the enemy attacked furiously, taking advantage of the cover afforded by the houses in the vicinity. The line maintained its position, keeping up a constant and heavy fire. The enemy contended himself with assaulting my skirmishers, not attacking my main line. At the moment of the attack my artillery opened upon the charging column of the enemy and continued with great effect during the entire fight, completely enfilading the rebel ranks and literally sweeping them down. After repeated attempts to carry Williams' works the enemy retired repulsed, their retreat harassed by the fire from my own and Williams' batteries, my position on the surrounding hills enabling me to pour a concentrated fire upon the enemy, sweeping with great effect the ravine in which they had sought refuge. Although my losses in this engagement compared with those on former occasions were small numerically, my artillery sustaining the force of battle, I suffered severely in the death of my chief of artillery, Captain William Wheeler, of the Thirteenth New York Battery, who fell shot through the heart by one of the enemy's sharpshooters whilst gallantly fighting his battery. During the short time of his connection with my division he had shown himself a gentleman of refined education and a gallant officer. The losses of the enemy under the fearful cannonade were heavy. From the appearance of the field, and from the statements by prisoners, I estimate their losses between 2,000 and 3,000. June 23, in the afternoon I advanced the left of my skirmish line, and after a spirited contest captured 30 or the enemy's pickets. June 24, 25, and 26, remained in position. Skirmishing maintained throughout, the accuracy of the enemy's fire causing some loss daily. On the 26th I received orders to advance on the 27th to co-operate with a movement of the Fourth and Fourteenth Corps upon my left.