developments. In about two hours I received orders from you directing me to withdraw to the trenches. We lost only about 50 men killed and wounded.
The officers and men behaved admirably. Every movement was promptly and accurately made. There was not a single straggler.
A few days after this affair of the 22nd of July I was ordered again to Poplar Springs, but was scarcely established in camp there before we had again to be placed in the trenches on the left of the Marietta road, and from this time until the end of the siege continued under close fire night and day. We had to move from one portion of the line to another, and had our full share of all the hardest places, extending from the left of the Marietta road across the Peach Tree road to our extreme right.
The militia, although but poorly armed-very few having proper equipments, more than two-thirds of them without cartridge-boxes-almost without ambulances or other transportation, most of the reserves never having been drilled at all, and the others but a few days-all performed well every service required during an arduous and dangerous campaign. They have been in service about 100 days, during tat least fifty of which they have been under close fire of the enemy mostly night and day. They have done good and substantial service in the cause of their country, and have established the fact that Georgia is willing and able to do something effective in her own name beyond furnishing more than her quota to the Confederate armies proper. the greatest number of effective muskets in the trenches at any one time was about 5,000.
When Atlanta was evacuated the reserve artillery of the army passed out through my lines, and my men were formed as a rear guard. The whole was safely brought to Griffin under your orders.
The march from Atlanta to Griffin satisfied me that men over fifty are not as a class fitted for military duty. I have therefore strongly advised the governor to withdraw them from continuous active service. There being a lull in active operations the Governor has, with my recommendation and your concurrence, temporarily withdrawn the militia from Confederate service and furloughed them for thirty days. This report is hastily written without access to the detailed records and papers of my adjutant-general's office, but all omissions can be readily supplied by the returns, &c., already forwarded to your office.
Before closing I cannot refrain from alluding to a subject which, under ordinary circumstances, forms no part of reports of subordinates to their commanders. I allude to the outcry from the press and the people against yourself because of the evacuation of Atlanta.
Unsolicited by me, without my consent or knowledge, the civil and military officers of the State of Georgia, when called upon to take up arms in defense of their homes, almost unanimously elected me their leader, and as their leader I wish in this report to say to you and place officially on record this opinion, viz: Had your orders been properly executed either upon the 20th of July at Peach Tree Creek, the 22nd of July on our right, or on the 30th of August at Jonesborough, Sherman would have been foiled and Atlanta saved, at least for some time to come, and I am not alone in this opinion. Commanding a peculiar organization, the ranking officer in the forces of the State