War of the Rebellion: Serial 092 Page 0110 OPERATIONS IN S. C., GA., AND FLA. Chapter LVI.

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was crossed and the march continued, passing Irwinton the 24th and the Oconee River, at Ball's Ferry, the 25th. The enemy was found on the opposite bank, and two regiments deployed to develop them. On the morning of the 26th they had left and preparations were at once made to cross, which was commenced by 11 a. M. The march was resumed without loss of time. Passing Irwin's Cross-Roads the 27th, we moved toward Summerville, through continuous pine forests, crossing several low marshy branches of the Ohoopee, reaching Summerville the 30th. The number of miles marched this month, 275; number of casualties 11.

On December 1 the march was resumed in the direction of Statesborough, along the right flank of the Ogeechee River. The remainder of the march was impeded by low, broad marshes, which it was invariably found necessity to corduroy. From Summerville to the Cannouchee River, which was reached the 7th, the Third Division, General John E. Smith, with my own, formed a separate column under my command, and was somewhat exposed to annoyances from the enemy endeavoring to reach Savannah from the west before us. On the 3rd the Fifty-third Ohio lost by capture a foraging party of 1 officer and 11 men. On the 4th, near Statesborough, the forages met a brigade of the enemy's cavalry endeavoring to join Wheeler; were attacked by them and driven to the main column, losing by capture 27 and by wounds 8. The enemy lost 2 killed and 2 captured. The enemy defended the crossing of the Cannouchee with infantry and two pieces artillery, having burned the bridge. During the night of the 8th the enemy retired; and the bridge being repaired, at 11 a. M. the 9th the brigades were crossed - one pushed to King's Bridge, the other to a point on the Gulf railroad, about six miles form Kings' Brigade, which was reached and much of the road destroyed toward the river by night, including the bridge. On the 10th the division recrossed the Cannouchee, moving to and crossing the Ogeechee at Dillon's Ferry, and proceeding to near the Anderson plantation, nine miles from Savannah. On the 12th the division moved back to Kings' bridge, it having received orders to cross the Ogeechee there and move down its right bank to Fort McAllister and capture it. At daybreak the 13th the troops were put in motion, reaching the vicinity of McAllister at about 11 a. M. About one mile from the fort a picket was captured, revealing the whereabouts of a line of torpedoes across the road. Some time was lost in safely removing them, when leaving eight regiments at that point, nine were carried forward to about 600 yards from the fort and deployed, with a line of skirmishers thrown sufficiently near the fort to keep the gunners from working their guns with any effect - those firing to the rear being in barbette. The grounds to the right of the fort being marshy, cut through by deep streams, rendered the deployment of that part of the line slow and difficult, and was not completely effected till 4. 45 p. M., at which time, every officer and man of the nine regiments being instructed what to do, the bugle sounded the forward, and at precisely 5 o'clock the fort was carried. The troops were deployed in one line as thin as possible, the result being that no man in the assault was struck till they came to close quarters. Here the fighting became desperate and deadly. Just outside the works a line of torpedoes had been placed, many of which were exploded by the tread of the troops, blowing many men to atoms, but the line moved on without checking, over, under, and through abatis, ditches, palisading, and parapet, fighting the garrison through the fort to their bomb-proofs, from which they still fought, and only succumbed as each man was individually overpowered.