Armstrong commanding DIVISION, Generals Jackson, Ferguson, and one other general (name not know), commanding brigades. They were mounted on mules and horses, many of them without saddles. They came in on the Gunpowder road, via Powder Springs, and seemed to have intended crossing at this and Howell's Ferry, but my detachment, meeting their advance guard at two different points, deployed, drove them back one mile and a half, and doubtless they were deceived and thought my force to be advance of a strong force. They fell back (the citizens say) in great excitement across or in the direction of Sweet Water. They crossed their cattle over the Chattahoochee that night about midnight, yet the force were still encamped seven or eight miles below here last night. Have no intimations of their movements or intentions since. The signs of the enemy seen by my men to-day corroborate the statement of the citizens and negroes in that vicinity. There was no artillery seen. They had 41 Union soldiers, prisoners reported to have been captured at Smyrna.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Z. S. RAGAN,
Major, Commanding Regiment.
Colonel F. C. SMITH,
Commanding First Brigade, THIRD DIVISION, Twentieth Army Corps.
Numbers 48. Report of Colonel Daniel Dustin, One hundred and fifth Illinois Infantry, commanding Second Brigade.
HDQRS. SECOND Brigadier, THIRD DIV., 20TH ARMY CORPS,
Savannah, Ga., December 27, 1864.
SIR: I have the honor to transmit my report of the operations of the Second Brigade, THIRD DIVISION, Twentieth Army Corps, from the time I assumed command on the 9th day of November to the 21st day of December. I also transmit herewith the reports of my regimental commanders, embracing the time from the occupation of Atlanta, on the 2nd day of September, to the capture of Savannah, on the 21st instant:
By special order from corps headquarters I assumed command of this brigade on the 9th day of November, my own regiment (the one hundred and fifth Illinois) still remaining in the First Brigade. I thus relieved Lieutenant-Colonel Crane, of the Eighty-fifth Indiana, the ranking officer of this brigade. Colonel Crane was in command but for a few days, and to relieve him from the necessity of making a separate report as brigade commander, it may be here stated that nothing of particular interest occurred while he was in command, excepting that on the 5th day of November the brigade moved out on the McDonough road for the distance of two miles, and then encamped. On the 6th it was ordered back to its original near Atlanta. Before returning, and just at daylight on the morning on the 6th, a dash upon our picket-line was made by a squad of rebel cavalry, and 1 man from the Thirty-THIRD Indiana Veteran Volunteers was killed. Early on the morning of the 9th of November our lines were disturbed by artillery firing from the enemy, who had placed two guns in position at a point a short distance to the right of the Decatur road. From this point some fifteen or twenty shells were thrown int our lines, some of them bursting within and close upon the encampment of the Eighty-fifth Indiana. The brigade was promptly under arms, but the firing soon ceased, and no further demonstration was made in our front.