War of the Rebellion: Serial 074 Page 0776 THE ATLANTA CAMPAIGN. Chapter L.

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the Lick Skillet road, the right resting on that road, forming an acute angle with it, and the left connecting with Sharp's brigade. As soon as the line was formed and guns loaded it advanced to attack the enemy, the guide being left. Moving forward some 299 yards through a thick undergrowth, the brigade emerged into a old field, where it was subjected to a severe fire from the enemy's skirmishers. Owing to the dense woods through which it had passed, and the several fences it had encountered in the advance, the line became much disorganized and scattered. Here it was ordered to move by the left flank some 250 yards, then halted, the line partly reformed, and the men made to lie down. After remaining in this position some ten minutes, and being all this time under the fire the enemy's skirmishers, the brigade was ordered to charge, which it did in a gallant style, driving the enemy from their skirmish line, and from another and stronger position protected by rails and earth-works, to his regular line of works, here capturing a few prisoners. It was in this first charge that General Johnston was wounded and retired from the field, and the command devolved upon Colonel Cltart. He was soon after wounded and retired, when the command of the brigade was turned over to me. Occupying the temporary works from which the enemy had been driven, the brigade engaged him behind his strongly fortified position some twenty-five or thirty minutes, when a reserve line, commanded by General Manigault, advanced to our support. As this line approached an order to charge was given, which was gallantly responded to, and a portion of the brigade, being parts of the Nineteenth, Twenty-second, and Fiftieth Alabama Regiments, succeeded in reaching the enemy's position, the first and last planting their colors on his works, and the third having its ensign killed in a few paces of them. The enemy's position being very strong, our lines much depleted, and our right flank exposed to his enfilading fire, which was pouring destruction into our ranks, forced us to fall back, with a loss of many killed and wounded and a few captured, some 250 yards to the road. Here the troops were halted and the line reformed, and, after a few minutes' work on a temporary breast-work of rails, again moved forward, and a second time occupied the enemy's first line of works. An engagement of fifteen or twenty minutes here ensued, in which the brigade was again forced to retire. I must do it the justice, however, to say that during this short engagement it fought nobly, and the right of it, which was pouring destruction into our ranks, forced us to fall back, with a loss of many killed and wounded and a few captured, some 250 yards to the road. Here the troops were halted and the line reformed, and, after a few minutes' work on a temporary breast-work of rails, again moved forward, and a second time occupied the enemy's first line of works. An engagement of fifteen or twenty minutes here ensued, in which the brigade was again forced to retire. I must do it the justice, however, to say that during this short engagement it fought nobly, and the right of it, which was at that time under my personal observation, did not give way until the enemy had moved around its flank and was marching in its rear. This created considerable disorder, and was the cause of much difficulty in rallying the men and reforming the line. The brigade now retired some sixty yards behind the crest of a hill, where it was at last rallied, and, under the fire of the enemy, which was till heavy and destructive, advanced to the crest of the hill, where ordered to lie down. Remaining at this point about an hour, a reserve line, under command of General Walthall, came up. This command was then relieved and ordered to retire beyond and near the road, and there await orders. Here it replenished ammunition; was soon after moved by the right flank about half a mile, halted, stacked arms, and ordered to be in readiness to support General Clayton whenever called on. It remained in this position until 1 o'clock that night, when moved by the left flank to a position on the present line of works.