War of the Rebellion: Serial 092 Page 0169 Chapter LVI. THE Savannah CAMPAIGN.

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Numbers 54. Report of Colonel Harrison C. Habart, Twenty-first Wisconsin Infantry, commanding First Brigade. HDQRS. FIRST Brigadier, FIRST DIV., 14TH ARMY CORPS, Near Savannah, Ga., December 31, 1864.


On the 15th day of November, during the afternoon and night, I clothed my troops and made all possible preparations for the campaign which terminated in the fall of Savannah. On the morning of the 16th my brigade marched in advance of the division. During the day we passed through Decatur, and, taking the upper Congton road, we encamped for the night at Lithonia. On the following morning we resumed our march, and at 12 m. of the 18th I camped my command four miles east of Covington and forty-four miles east of Atlanta. After passing Decatur we found forage in great abundance, a sufficient quantity of which was gathered by my foraging parties to supply my whole command. Near Yellow River the brigade destroyed two miles and a half and railroad. November 19, we again resumed our march, and on the 23rd day of November I camped my troops about one mile from Milledgeville. On the morning of the 24th my brigade marched through Milledgeville, and, crossing the Oconee River, we took the Sandersville road and reached Sandersville on the 27th. Here I received orders from General Davis to hold the town until all the trains of the Fourteenth Army Corps and General Kilpatrick's trains had passed, and then follow as an escort. About 7 p. m., the trains having passed, I ordered my pickets to rejoin their commands, and withdrew from the town. From Sandersville my brigade formed the rear guard until we reached Louisville, November 29. At Sandersville the Eighty-eighth Indiana lost one man, captured by a squad of rebel cavalry. On the 30th my brigade, in advance of the division, marched from Louisville on the road leading to Station Numbers 10, and camped three miles east of Sebastopol. From this point the command marched to Lumpkin's, a station on the Augusta railroad, where we bivouacked during the night. The next morning, December 4, my brigade destroyed one mile and a quarter of railroad, after which we marched in the direction of the Savannah River, and striking the river road, we marched down toward Savannah. Nothing of importance occurred. We reached our first position before the city December 11. Here I relieved a division of the Seventeenth Army Corps, and threw up works along my whole front. About 4 p. m. December 12, by order of General Carlin, I moved my brigade to the right, crossed the Ogeechee Canal, relieved General Smith's division, Seventeenth Army Corps. While holding this position (with a front of more than two miles) I forwarded 1 prisoner of war captured by the One hundred and fourth Illinois in a light skirmish at the Lawton farm, and 27 deserters, who came through my lines on the night of the 15th of December. During the night of the 20th of December the rebels evacuated the city, and early the next morning my skirmishers crossed the swamps and rice fields in my front, and took possession of their works, capturing 3 prisoners. There were 10 pieces of ordnance left by the rebels in my front, including two 64-pounders. During the day I moved my brigade over on the Lawton farm, and remained until the next morning, when I marched to this camp.


*For portion of report (here omitted) relating to operations in North Carolina and North Alabama, see VOL. XXXIX, Part I, p. 617.