War of the Rebellion: Serial 073 Page 0368 THE ATLANTA CAMPAIGN. Chapter L.

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half the distance up the hill, a galling fire opened from the brush a little to my front and left upon the left wing of the regiment. This, of course, staggered the men for a moment, but they immediately returned the fire and pressed forward. As yet the enemy had not reached the crest of the hill immediately in front of the center and right wing. An oblique fire being poured in upon the left and center, it somewhat retarded their forward movement, but as the right wing pressed forward closing in upon the center, the result was to swing the whole regiment around to the left, the right gaining the crest of the hill, which enabled the whole regiment to pour a rapid flanking fire upon the columns of the enemy. It seems the rebels were ascending the hill at the same time with the One hundred and twenty-ninth, but from an opposite direction,and each arriving upon the crest about the same time both lines were brought into very close contact. The right wing very summarily disposed of the line in their immediate front as they reached the road running across the crest of the hill, driving the enemy from behind a fence, who hastily obliqued toward the left of the regiment,and, as the right wing swung around and poured volley into the flank of the enemy,and steadily advanced up the road, the heavy lines of the enemy immediately in front of the center and the left were thrown into confusion and began to give away. The left being thus relieved from the heavy fire, advanced steadily forward, and the whole regiment swung around to the right, the extreme right remaining stationary as a fixed pivot. Thence, when the whole regiment reached the crest of the hill, it had in effect obliqued to the left. The enemy to have been taken by surprise, and,although their numbers were greatly superior to ours, and though they fired rapidly and destructively,they gave way,very slowly at first, then faster, and, finally,at a double-quick until they had passed beyond the reach of our guns. Immediately in our front were two rebel stand of colors, which showed the presence of at least two rebel regiments. The bearers of these flags were repeatedly shot down a very short distance to our front,and both colors were left upon the field. One of these flags was seized by a member of my regiment, who was instantly shot dead after reaching my lines. The other flag fell the last time while the color bearer was in the retreat down the hill, and at a time when the only troops upon the crest of the hill was the One hundred and twenty-ninth. When the left wing swung forward to the crest it passed by a considerable body of the enemy still farther to our left, who turned upon us after we had passed and gave us a fire in the rear, until other troops, pressing forward to our left, engaged their attention. Soon after we had thus gained the crest, the One hundred and fifth Illinois and Seventieth Indiana,composing the second line,moved up the hill, obliquing to our left, and formed on the left (excepting four companies of the One hundred and fifth, overlapping the One hundred and twenty-ninth in the rear), and thereby prevented the One hundred and twenty-ninth from being cut off by the enemy. For some reason the Second Brigade did not advance from the first hill until some time after the First Brigade had moved forward. Still I urged on my regiment, because I deemed the possession of the second hill as of vital importance, and also supposed the Second Brigade would be up in a moment; but, after reaching the crest of the hill, I found my left flank at least 300 yards in advance of the line of Coburn, and my regiment liable to be flanked by the rebels massing on my left and to the rear. This, however,was effectually prevented by the timely arrival of the One hundred and fifth Illinois and Seventieth Indiana. In his connection, I must call attention to the gallantry and cool bravery of both the officers and men of my regiment. To speak of personal acts of daring conduct would make this communication too long. With no support for a time upon the left, the regiment obstinately fought its way to the crest against greatly superior numbers, trusting implicitly to the brave men in their rear to prevent their being flanked by the enemy on our left. Our loss was as follows: 12 killed, 3 officers and 49 enlisted men wounded. The loss of the rebels from the fire of the One hundred and twenty-ninth was very severe, but I cannot speak of numbers with any certainty,as the ground over which the regiment advanced and fought subsequently became the rear and front of the One hundred and fifth Illinois the One hundred and twenty-ninth having been ordered after the fight to take a new position to the right. All the rebels killed by the One hundred and twenty-ninth were buried by the One hundred and fifth, except those killed and beyond the skirmish line. A large number of prisoners were taken by this regiment, both pending and after the fight, the exact number not known.

Respectfully submitted.


Colonel, Commanding Regiment.


Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, First Brigadier, Third Div., 20th Army Corps.