On the morning of the 11th of November the regiment broke up camp at Rome and proceeded, with its brigade and division, to Atlanta, Ga., where it joined Sherman's grand army. The regiment entered Atlanta on the 15th; remained long enough to draw rations and clothing for the command, and the same evening headed southward. The regiment was continually with its brigade throughout the march from Atlanta to the Little Ogeechee River, not participating in any action until the 9th of December, when the regiment, with its brigade, crossed the Ogeechee Canal near the Ogeechee River, and proceeded in the direction of Savannah. The advance of the brigade soon encountered the enemy. The Twelfth and Sixty-sixth Illinois were formed on the right and left of the road, the Eighty-first being held in reserve. One company, f, Lieutenant Pittman commanding, was sent forward as skirmishers. At times the musketry and cannonading was quite brisk, and the enemy were driven for a considerable distance by our skirmish line. The brigade being very much annoyed by a rebel battery, Colonel Adams ordered the regiment forward with instructions to advance through a wood on the left of the road, and, if possible, get in rear of the battery and capture it. After marching for nearly two miles through a wood, almost impassable on account of the thick underbrush, it was discovered that the enemy had taken the alarm and fled. During the operations of this day the regiment was under fire several times, but did not sustain any loss. Several prisoners were captured by the company on the skirmish line.
From the 10th of December until the capture of Savannah, the regiment was in camp on the Anderson place, near the Little Ogeechee River, doing its share of picket duty, with the loss of one man mortally wounded. Special mention should be made of First Lieutenant William Pittman and Sergeant Mason, who, assisted by seven volunteers from the Eighty-first Ohio and three from the Sixty-sixth Illinois, were the first to cross the Little Ogeechee River. Several attempts were made by the division to effect a crossing, but owing to the marshy ground on both sides of the river all the attempts failed, until the night of the 19th of November, when Lieutenant Pittman and party effected a crossing. After day had explored the ground on the opposite side of the river, and had ascertained that troops could be easily thrown across, they were ordered to recross. The enemy evacuated on the night of the 20th, before the necessary preparations could be made to cross a large force, so that no advantage resulted from the crossing effected by Lieutenant Pittman and party; yet they are not deserving of less praise on that account. The undertaking was a hazardous one, and had the enemy remained in our front the information gained by Lieutenant Pittman would have been of great importance to the army. Captain McCain and Lieutenant Harbaugh are also deserving of praise for valuable assistance rendered Lieutenant Pittman.
On the morning of the 21st the regiment, with its brigade, crossed the Little Ogeechee, and proceeded to Savannah, near which place it went into camp.
I am, lieutenant, very respectfully,
WM. CLAY HENRY,
Major Eighty-first Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
Lieutenant WILLIAM PITTMAN,
Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, 2nd Brigadier, 4th Div., 15th Army Corps.