War of the Rebellion: Serial 074 Page 0288 THE ATLANTA CAMPAIGN. Chapter L.

Search Civil War Official Records

occupied the works, but I was again forced to retire and occupy the works which I had left in the morning. Orders were received from the general commanding the division to retake the works at all hazards. I immediately moved my lines forward and reoccupied the works without opposition, and pushed my skirmishers forward nearly to the line they formerly occupied. A large number of the enemy's dead were buried in our front, and there were brought in 32 of the enemy's wounded, most of them mortally. The command remained at this place until the night of the 26th, when orders were received to be ready at midnight to move. It was, however, nearly daylight when the command got in motion.

On the night of [the] 27th camped in the rear of the Sixteenth Corps, and at daylight in the morning were again on the march. The hold my brigade in readiness to support, and govern my movements in accordance with those of Colonel Oliver's brigade (the Third). I moved forward, in connection with the entire division, through a dense wood, and finally emerged into an open field. Here I received your order to join my command on the right of Third Brigade, and moved forward by the front and occupy the crest of the hill which lay before us. After some delay in rectifying the line, the advance was made, and the hill occupied under the fire of artillery and light skirmishing. I immediately instructed the command to secure themselves by throwing up protection of whatever could be found, and afterward procured a few shovels, and ordered that they be used without delay. Scarcely had these orders been given, and the men had time to throw up a slight protection, before the enemy were reported advancing in force, and very soon our skirmishers were driven in, closely followed by the enemy's main line. They were soon repulsed and driven back, but only to come again with more determination and increased numbers. In the second assault I discovered symptoms of weakness on the right of my brigade, and to prevent, if possible, a like occurrence as that of the 22d, I immediately formed my reserve regiment at right angles with the main line, and sent forward three companies to open an oblique fire,and render all the assistance in their power to help maintain an unbroken line on our right. Re-enforcements arriving, however, I ordered the regiment thus thrown out back into their original position, with the exception of the three companies spoken of. For six hours an incessant roar of musketry was kept up, and every assault or attempt on the part of the enemy to drive us from our position was frustrated. During the progress of the fight, I received notification from you that a portion of the Third Brigade was hard pressed. I sent the Ninetieth Illinois Infantry to their support. This regiment remained in that position during the entire fight.

In concluding this report I cannot close without paying a parting tribute to the gallantry displayed on every occasion by the officers and men, who, during a campaign, which has not yet closed, of ninety-five days, have never flinched from duty, be that duty ever so perilous.

The brigade which I have the honor to command has, in the aggregate, lost nearly 600 men in killed, wounded, and missing since leaving Scottsborough, Ala., on the morning of May 1, and, with the exception of the battle of Resaca (official report of which has been forward*), there have been but three regiments present


*Special report of the battle of Resaca not found.