my advance pickets being about two and a half miles east of me on the road from Dallas to Villa Rice. About 1 p. m. my pickets were attacked and driven in about one mile. At 3 p. m. about two regiment of rebel cavalry showed themselves, sharp skirmishing being kept up the entire afternoon. I took parts of the Fourth Michigan and Seventh Pennsylvania, the only regiments I had, the Fourth Regulars being on detached service with General McPherson, to the front. One battalion Seventh Pennsylvania, under Major Jennings, and one battalion Fourth Michigan, under Captain Pritchard, charged and drove the rebels from a good position near an old ginhouse on the Dallas road, and followed them at the gallop between two and three miles.
On the following morning, 27th, Colonel Miller, with his regiment (Seventy-second Indiana), reported to me, and I received orders from General McPherson through the general commanding the division, to gain possession of the Dallas and Villa Rica road, and attack the enemy vigorously in flank or rear. Shortly prior to this my pickets had been again attacked. Colonel Sipes, with a portion of his regiment, had gone out to support them. I moved to the front with the remainder of the Seventh Pennsylvania, Fourth Michigan, and Seventy-second Indiana, and found Colonel Sipes with his small force fighting the whole of Ferguson's brigade. I sent the remainder of his regiment to support him on the direct road. Lieutenant-Colonel Park, with the Fourth Michigan, moved across open ground to our left, and at the gallop drove them from their old position at the gin-house. I dismounted the Seventy-second Indiana, and they followed the Fourth Michigan beyond the gin-house to the Dallas and Villa Rica road, where I had breast-works of rails, logs, &c., thrown up. Lieutenant-Colonel Kitchell having reported to me with a portion of his regiment (Ninety-eighth Illinois), I ordered him to the support of Colonel Sipes, and so soon as I gained the Dallas and Villa Rica road, I sent a squadron to the right to communicate with him, and directed Colonel Sipes to leave the Ninety-eighth to hold the Powder Springs road, and with his own regiment to drive the enemy and join me near the gin-house. On the arrival of the Seventh I placed them on the right of the Seventy-second (dismounted and behind breast-works), and with a portion of the Fourth Michigan moved down the road toward Dallas and found my pickets skirmishing with the enemy, within three miles of that place. The woods here were very dense, and on the northeast side of the road, running parallel to it, there is a range of hills, which was occupied by the rebel cavalry in considerable force. At a little less than three miles from Dallas I had a good view of a line of breast-works facing west. I therefore ordered up Griffin's section of artilery, with the Fourth Michigan Cavalry to support it, and commenced shelling them. A heavy column of dust was moving on the Marietta road, which I supposed to be about one mile distant from me; a few shells were thrown in that direction, and also at several other points where there were indications of the enemy. I kept up the fire until the position occupied by the Seventh Pennsylvania and Seventy-second Indiana was attacked, and a flanking fire opened on myself from the hill and woods on our right,when, not wishing to endanger the artillery too much, I rejoined the other regiments. Shortly after I did so, the enemy's artillery opened on me from the hill, and the second shell thrown killed two of the artillery horses. I sent the
52 R R-VOL XXXVIII, PT II