I then received orders from Colonel Rowett to move on the hill in rear of the fort on the east side of the railroad. I moved by the right of companies to the rear, and gallantly did the officers and men move up the steep hill-side covered with underbrush and briers, expecting every moment to be opened on by the enemy's artillery which was reported they had in position. After I arrived on top of the hill I took up a position a few yards in rear of the fort. I had just taken the position when began a fearful artillery fire from the enemy's battery, which was spiritedly replied to by the battery in the fort, many of my men being wounded by the rebel shell. I kept the regiment in the same position for about three hours. At about 10 a. m. the Twelfth Illinois Infantry reported to me by direction of Colonel Rowett. I placed them on the right of the Fiftieth Illinois Infantry. In a short time I received orders to move one of my regiments to the bank of the railroad cut. On receipt of the order I moved the Twelfth Illinois Infantry on the double-quick. They then halted and took up a new position as directed.
I regret that being personally unacquainted with the officers and men of the Twelfth Illinois Infantry, I am unable to give you the names of those worthy of particular mention. Both officers and men of the Twelfth Illinois Infantry performed their part most gallantly.
It being about 11 a. m. the artillery firing partially ceased, and the enemy advanced in force, both in front and on our right flank, nearly in rear of my position. I then went to see if I could find a better position, which I did. I countermarched the Fiftieth Illinois Infantry and took up a new position, my right resting a little in the rear and to the right of the fort on the right of the railroad, my left resting on the dirt road running up between the two forts. I then ordered Company B, of my regiment, out as skirmishers, and under a galling fire of musketry the men deployed and took their positions along the road running in front of the regiment and about 300 yards from the enemy's line of battle. The enemy charged our line three times, but by the gallant conduct of the officers, and the cool and courageous bravery of the men, they repulsed them with heavy loss, our loss being very heavy also, and now the battle raged. I received orders to report with my command on the WEST side of the railroad at the fort. I drew off the regiment and marched at a double-quick off to the left of the hill, and under fire of artillery and musketry, which I never have seen equaled, the regiment passed down the hill, facing the enemy, and across the railroad at the depot and up the hill to the fort on the hill, where I was ordered to report the command. During the movement I had my regimental flag-staff shot off three different times with the enemy's shells. I am unable to give the number, but many of my men fell before it was possible to accomplish the movement and get the regiment in position, either killed or wounded. Bravely and nobly did the officers and men of the Fiftieth Illinois Infantry maintain their order, marching up with that determined feeling which only visits the brave soldier, to conquer or die, trusting in the god of battles for that glorious result which followed-"victory. " I then, with the assistance of what officers I had, quickly formed the regiment in front of the fort, next to the railroad, some occupying a position to the left of the fort, which they took and held under a most destructive fire of artillery and musketry that has ever, in my opinion, been witnessed during this present rebellion. By this time I had lost all my officers but four, and about one-fourth of my men, either killed or wounded. I was then struck by a musket-ball in the left thigh, which disabled me, but the men did not falter, but fought on with that stern determination which characterized them through