Report of Major General Alexander P. Stewart, C. S. Army, commanding division, of operations May 7-27.
HEADQUARTERS STEWART'S DIVISION,
HOOD'S CORPS, ARMY OF TENNESSEE,
In the Field, Paulding County, Ga., June 5, 1864.
SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of this division during the present campaign:
On the morning of Saturday, May 7, the enemy being reported advancing from Ringgold on Dalton, my command was placed under arms, and with Eldridge's battalion of artillery took position on the ridges in front of Mill Creek Gap and on the right of the railroad, Bate's division prolonging the line on left of the railroad. The cavalry fell back and the enemy appeared on Tunnel Hill Ridge in heavy force. After night-fall, in obedience to orders from Lieutenant-General Hood, the division retired to the line we had intrenched on the south or Dalton side of the gap. On Monday, the 9th, the troops were disposed as follows: Clayton's brigade on the main mountain (Rocky Face) on the right, Baker's and Stovall's on the ridge to the right of the creek and railroad, Gibson's on the advanced ridge on left of the railroad, Bate's division on left of Gibson's, occupying the main mountain to Trail Gap. Sunday evening (8th), the enemy's skirmishers occupied the line we abandoned Saturday night-the front line of the gap-and from that time until Thursday night (12th) a constant and heavy skirmishing continued. In fortifying the gap I had caused lines of breast-heights for skirmishers to be constructed in front of the main lines of battle, artillery proof. The enemy repeatedly charged them and were as often repulsed with severe loss. It is believed the skirmishers occupying these advanced works could have held them successfully against any force that could have been brought against them. During these affairs my own loss was not* trifling. Gibson's line was occasionally enfilade by the enemy's artillery, from which he suffered, though not heavily.
It is proper here to say that the defenses of the gap were constructed by my division, Lieutenant John W. Glenn being the engineer officer superintending. I desire to bear testimony to his zeal, skill, and energy. Mill Creek had been dammed at the two railroad bridges by the division pioneer company, aided by the pioneers of Stevenson's division.
Captain J. R. Oliver, Forty-fourth Tennessee Volunteers, commanding my pioneers, deserves special mention as a most capable and efficient officer. His company is not surpassed by any in the army. Captain John A. Avirett, also, of Fifty-eighth Alabama, is entitled to the same distinction for the energy and skill displayed by him in fortifying Rocky Face on north side of the gap and constructing practicable roads to the top of the mountain and along its summit.
Thursday night (12th) we brought up the rear of the corps in retiring to Tilton. Friday night (13th) bivouacked along the railroad some three miles in advance of Resaca, and on Saturday morning (14th) took position in a line crossing the railroad, forming the right of the army, my right resting on the Connesauga. About 5 p. m.,
*The word "not" probably mis-copied in original for the word but.