Report of Colonel Bushrod Jones, Fifty-eighth Alabama Infantry, commanding Holtzclaw's (formerly Clayton's) brigade, of operations August 31.
HEADQUARTERS HOLTZCLAW'S BRIGADE,
September 16, 1864.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of the action of Holtzclaw's brigade in the battle of Jonesborough, August 31:
About 3 p.m. the brigade was in line of battle in the edge of the woods, being the right brigade of the second line, and overlapping the front line nearly the entire brigade front. The right wing of the brigade and its right flank were protected by a line of skirmishers. At the appointed signal for the advance, the order of the major-general, the men and officers generally moved forward wit spirit and enthusiasm and in very good order. After advancing about 200 yards I met the first line, repulsed with disorder and confusion after a very short contest, and then an open space of about 300 yards intervened between the brigade and the works of the enemy. The line continued to advance with good order and much enthusiasm. Unfortunately, just as the line arrived at a line of rail piles, about forty yards in front of the enemy's line, the line halted without orders, and the men sought shelter behind these piles, throwing the line in disorder. In a few minutes I saw the line on my left give way and retire in disorder. The men were in the regiment immediately on my left. I hastened to the left, fearing the example would cause the left regiment of the brigade to retire also, but soon saw they maintained their position without any encouragement from me. I then used every effort in my power to reform the line and to urge the men forward to take the works in front, but without effect. I held this advanced position until all the troops within sight on my left had been repulsed, and until i saw that it was useless to make any more efforts to carry the position-probably about a half hour. I then ordered the brigade to retire in order, and reformed the line at the first line of works from which we advanced at the beginning of the battle.
I regret to say that the conduct of the brigade after halting at the picket-line of the enemy was not satisfactory. The men seemed possessed of some great horror of charging breast-works, which no power, persuasion, or example could dispel, yet I must say that the officers generally did their duty.
My own personal obligations are especially due to the staff officers-Lieuts. R. P. Baker and John Holtzclaw and Captain J. H. Pickens-each of whom had his horse shot in the action.
The brigade went into action with 58 officers, 645 guns. Casualties- 11 killed, 67 wounded, 30 missing.
Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
Captain J. M. MACON,
P. S.-Officers included in casualties-1 killed, 4 wounded, 2 missing.