back because all the cavalry in that direction will be driven away, still seem squads might be left about Stone Mountain, as he will take the direct road from Decatur to Covington, passing considerably south of Stone Mountain. Order you ordnance wagons and those that you may have left about Decatur up to your immediate rear. I will ride over to Thomas to-morrow morning and would like to hear from you before starting. If at any time you see signs of retreat on the part of the enemy follow up with all possible vigor, keeping to the left or south of Atlanta and following roads that will keep you on that flank. If Hood was as roughly handled by Thomas this afternoon as reported, and in addition the little artillery he has displayed to-day, I would not be astonished to find him off in the morning, but I see no signs looking that way yet. In case he retreats it will be toward Macon, whither all the advance stores have been sent, and most of the provisions. I want him pursued vigorously for a couple of days.
W. T. SHERMAN,
IN THE FIELD, July 21, 1864-3 p. m.
GENERAL: Brigadier-General Leggett, commanding Third Division, Seventeenth Army Corps, advanced his lines and captured a hill, quite a commanding position, this forenoon; also, some 60 prisoners, principally from Cleburne's division. General Leggett is on my extreme left. The Fourth Division (late Gresham's) made a demonstration at the same time in favor of Leggett, and the loss in the two divisions is between 260 and 300 killed and wounded. The hill is two and a quarter miles from Atlanta, and a portion of the enemy's works around the town are in view. The enemy made one vigorous and two feeble attempts to recapture the hill, but were signally repulsed. Since that time he to has been moving troops in the direction of our left. General Leggett reports having seen at least ten regiments of infantry passing in that direction. I have strengthened that portion of the line with all the available troops I have got, and I will simply remark in closing, that I have no cavalry as a body of observation on my flank, and that the whole rebel army, except Georgia militia, is not in front of the Army of the Cumberland.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAS. B. McPHERSON,
HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
July 21, , 1864 -4.30 p. m.
GENERAL: The enemy attacked this morning on our left and rear, and Generals Smith and Leggett have been fighting from both sides of the works thrown up last night, repulsing Hardee's corps with heavy loss. The enemy have become quiet, and if I had a fresh brigade I could recover all that I have lost and drive the enemy easily.
FRANK P. BLAIR,