Closed up the business of the Board, and at seven o'clock in the evening (Tuesday) left Stevenson
to rejoin the brigade.
On the way to the river I passed Colonel Stanley
's brigade of our division.
The air was thick with dust.
It was quite dark when I crossed the bridge.
The brigade had started on the march hours before, but I thought best to push on and overtake it. After getting on the wrong road and riding considerably out of my way, I finally found the right one, and about ten o'clock overtook the rear of the column.
The two armies will face each other before the end of the week.
's brigade is bivouacking near me. I have a bad cold, but otherwise am in good health.
We moved from Moore's Spring
, on the Tennessee
, in the morning, and after laboring all day advanced less than one mile and a quarter.
We were ascending Sand mountain
; many of our wagons did not reach the summit.
With two regiments I descended into Lookout valley
and bivouacked at Brown's Springs about dark.
Our transportation, owing to the darkness and extreme badness of the roads, remained on the top of
I have no blankets, and nothing to eat except one ear of corn which one of the colored boys roasted for me. Wrapped in my overcoat, about nine o'clock, I lay down on the ground to sleep; but a terrible toothache took hold of me, and I was compelled to get up and find such relief as I could in walking up and down the road.
The moon shone brightly, and many camp-fires glimmered in the valley and along the side of the mountain.
It was three o'clock in the morning before gentle sleep made me oblivious to aching teeth and head, and all the other aches which had possession of me.
A few deserters come in to us, but they bring little information of the enemy.
We are now in Georgia
, twenty miles from Chattanooga
by the direct road, which, like all roads here, is very crooked, and difficult to travel.
The enemy is, doubtless, in force very near, but he makes no demonstrations and retires his pickets without firing a gun. The developments of the next week or two will be matters for the historian.
's division is just coming into the valley; what other troops are to cross the mountain by this road I do not know.
As I write, heavy guns are heard off in the direction of Chattanooga
The roads are extremely dusty.
This morning I consigned to the flames all letters which have come to me during the last two months.
I have just returned from a ride up the valley to the site of the proposed iron works of Georgia
Work on the railroad, on the mountain roads, and on
the furnaces, was suspended on our approach.
The negroes and white laborers were run off to get them beyond our reach.
The hills in the vicinity of the proposed works are undoubtedly full of iron; the ore crops out so plainly that it is visible to all passers.
Here the Confederacy
proposed to supply its railroads with iron rail, an article at present very nearly exhausted in the South
Had the Georgians possessed common business sense and common energy, extensive furnaces would have been in operation in this valley years ago; and now, instead of a few poorly cultivated corn-fields, with here and there a cabin, the valley and hillsides would be overflowing with popuulation and wealth.
We returned from the site of the iron works by way of Trenton
, the seat of justice of Dade county
are encamped near Trenton
I feel better since my ride.
（Sunday.) Marched to Johnson
's Crook, and bivouacked, at nightfall, at McKay's Spring, on the north side of Lookout mountain
; here my advance regiment, the Forty-second Indiana, had a slight skirmish with the enemy, in which one man was wounded.
We gained the summit of Lookout mountain
, and the enemy retired to the gaps on the south side.
Started at four o'clock in the morning and pushed for Cooper's Gap
Surprised a cavalry picket at the foot of the mountain, in McLemore's Cove, Chattanooga valley
In this little affair we captured
five sabers, one revolver, one carbine, one prisoner, and seriously wounded one man.
While standing on a peak of Lookout, we saw far off to the east long lines of dust trending slowly to the south, and inferred from this that Bragg
had abandoned Chattanooga
, and was either retiring before us or making preparations to check the center and right of our line.
Marched up the valley to Stephen's Gap and rejoined the division.
Our division marched across McLemore's Cove to Pigeon mountain
, found Dug Gap obstructed, and the enemy in force on the right, left, and front.
The skirmishers of the advance brigade, Colonel Surwell
's, were engaged somewhat, and during the night information poured in upon us, from all quarters, that the enemy, in strength, was making dispositions to surround and cut us off before reinforcements could arrive.
Two brigades of Baird
's division joined us about 10 A. M. Five thousand of the enemy's cavalry were reported to be moving to our left and rear; soon after, his infantry appeared on our right and left, and, a little later, in our front.
From the summit of Pigeon mountain
, the rebels could observe all our movements, and form a good estimate of our entire force.
Our immense train, swelled now by the transportation of Baird
's division to near four hundred wagons, compelled us to select such positions as would enable us to protect the train, and not such as were most favorable for making an offensive or defensive fight.
It was now impossible for Brannan
to reach us in time to render assistance.
concluded, therefore, to fall back, and ordered me to move to Bailey's Cross-roads, and await the passage of the wagon train to the rear.
The enemy attacked soon after, but were held in check until the transportation had time to return to Stephens' Gap.
We expected an attack this morning, but, reinforcements arriving, the enemy retired.
This afternoon Brannan
made a reconnoissance, but the result I have not ascertained; there was, however, no fighting.
I am writing this in the woods, where we are bivouacking for the night.
For nearly two weeks, now, I have not had my clothes off; and for perhaps not more than two nights of the time have I had my boots and spurs off. I have arisen at three o'clock in the morning and not lain down until ten or eleven at night.
My appetite is good and health excellent.
Last night my horse fell down with me, and on me, but strange to say only injured himself.
We find great numbers of men in these mountains who profess to be loyal.
Our army is divided-Crittenden on the left, our corps (Thomas
) in the center, and McCook
far to the right.
The greatest danger we need apprehend is that the enemy may concentrate rapidly and fight our widely separated corps in detail.
Our transportation, necessarily large in any case, but unnecessarily large in this, impedes us very much.
The roads up and down the mountains are extremely bad; our progress has therefore been slow, and the
march hither a tedious one.
The brigade lies in the open field before me in battle line.
The boys have llad no time to rest during the day, and have done much night work, but they hold up well.
A katydid has been very friendly with me to-night, and is now sitting on the paper as if to read what I have written.
Marched from Bailey's Cross-roads to Owensford on the Chickamauga
Ordered to relieve General Hazen
, who held position on the road to Crawfish Springs; but as he had received no orders, and as mine were but verbal, he declined to move, and I therefore continued my march and bivouacked at the springs.
About midnight I was ordered to proceed to a ford of the Chickamauga
and relieve a brigade of Palmer
's division, commanded by Colonel Grose
The night was dark and the road crooked.
About two in the morning I reached the place; and as Colonel Grose
's pickets were being relieved and mine substituted, occasional shots along the line indicated that the enemy was in our immediate front.
At an early hour in the morning the enemy's pickets made their appearance on the east side of the Chickamauga
and engaged my skirmishers.
Some hours later he opened on us with two batteries, and a sharp artillery fight ensued.
During this engagement, the Fifteenth Kentucky, Colonel Taylor
, occupied an advanced position in the woods on the low ground, and the shots of the artillery passed immediately
over it. I rode down to this regiment to see that the men were not disturbed by the furious cannonading, and to obtain at the same time a better view of the enemy.
While thus absent, Captain Bridges
, concluding that the Confederate
guns were too heavy for him, limbered up and fell back.
Hastening to the hill, I sent Captain Wilson
with an order to Bridges to return; and, being reinforced soon after by three pieces of Shultz
's First Ohio Battery, we opened again on the advancing columns of the enemy, when they fell back precipitately, evidently concluding that the lull in our firing and withdrawal of our artillery were simply devices to draw them on.
In this affair eight men of the infantry were wounded; and Captain Bridges
had two men killed, nine wounded, and lost twelve horses.
About five o'clock in the afternoon I was directed to withdraw my picket line — which had been greatly extended in order to connect with troops on the leftas silently and carefully as possible, and return to Crawfish Springs.
Arriving at the springs, the boys were allowed time to fill their canteens with water, when we pushed forward on the Chattanooga
road to a ridge near Osbern
's, where we bivouacked for the night.
There had been heavy fighting on our left during the whole afternoon; and while the boys were preparing supper, a very considerable engagement was occurring not far distant to the east and south of us. Elsewhere an occasional volley of musketry, and boom of artillery, with scattered firing along an
extended line indicated that the two grand armies were concentrating for battle, and that the morrow would give us hot and dangerous work.
（Sunday.) At an early hour, in the morning I was directed to move northward on the Chattanooga
road and report to General Thomas
He ordered me to go to the extreme left of our line, form perpendicularly to the rear of Baird
's division, connecting with his left.
I disposed of my brigade as directed.
's line appeared to run parallel with the road, and mine running to the rear crossed the road.
On this road and near it I posted my artillery, and advanced my skirmishers to the edge of the open field in front of the left and center of my line.
The position was a good one, and my brigade and the one on Baird
's left could have co-operated and assisted each other in maintaining it. Fifteen minutes after this line was formed, Captain Gaw
, of General Thomas
' staff, brought me a verbal order to advance my line to a ridge or low hill (McDaniel's house), fully onefourth of a mile distant.
I represented to him that in advancing I would necessarily leave a long interval between my right and Baird
's left, and also that I was already in the position which General Thomas
himself told me to occupy.
He replied that the order to move forward was imperative, and that I was to be supported by Negley
with the other two brigades of his division.
I could object no further, although the movement seemed exceedingly unwise, and, therefore, pushed forward my men as rapidly as possible to the point indicated.
The Eighty-eighth Indiana (Colonel
), on the left, moved into position without difficulty.
The Forty-second Indiana (LieutenantColonel McIntyre
), on its right, met with considerable opposition in advancing through the woods, but finally reached the ridge.
The One Hundred and Fourth Illinois (Lieutenant-Colonel Hapeman
), and Fifteenth Kentucky (Colonel Taylor
), on the right, became engaged almost immediately and advanced slowly.
The enemy in strong force pressed them heavily in front and on the right flank.
At this time I sent an aid to request General Baird
or General King
to throw a force in the interval between my right and their left, and dispatched Captain Wilson
to the rear to hasten forward General Negley
to my support.
My regiment on the right was confronted by so large a force that it was compelled to fall back, which it did in good order, contesting the ground stoutly.
About this time a column of the enemy, en masse
, on the double quick, pressed into the interval between the One Hundred and Fourth Illinois and Forty-second Indiana, and turned with the evident intention of capturing the latter, which was then busily engaged with the rebels in its front; but Captain Bridges
opened on it with grape and canister, when it broke and fell back in disorder to the shelter of the woods.
The Forty-second Indiana, but a moment before almost surrounded, was thus enabled to fight its way to the left and unite with the Eighty-eighth.
Soon after this the enemy made another and more furious assault upon the One Hundred and Fourth Illinois and Fifteenth Kentucky,
and, driving them back, advanced to within fifty yards of my battery, and poured into it a heavy fire, killing Lieutenant Bishop
, and killing or wounding all the men and horses belonging to his section, which consequently fell into rebel hands.
and his officers, by the exercise of great courage and coolness, succeeded in saving the remainder of the battery.
It was in this encounter that Captain LeFevre
, of my staff, was killed, and Lieutenant Calkins
, also of the staff, was wounded.
The enemy having now gained the woods south of the open field and west of the road, I opposed his further progress as well as I could with the Fifteenth Kentucky and One Hundred and Fourth Illinois; but as he had two full brigades, the struggle on our part seemed a hopeless one.
Fortunately, at this juncture, I discovered a battery on the road in our rear (I think it was Captain Goodspeed
's), and at my request the Captain
ordered it to change front and open fire.
This additional opposition served for a time to entirely check the enemy.
The Eighty-eighth and Forty-second Indiana, compelled, as their officers claim, to make a detour to the left and rear, in order to escape capture or utter annihilation, found General Negley
, and were ordered to remain with him, and finally to retire with him in the direction of Rossville
This, however, I did not ascertain until ten hours later in the day.
Firing having now ceased in my front, and being the only mounted officer or mounted man present, I
left the Fifteenth Kentucky and One Hundred and Fourth Illinois temporarily in charge of Colonel Taylor
, and hurried back to see General Thomas
, and urge the necessity for more troops to enable me to re-establish the line.
On the way, and before proceeding far, I met the Second Brigade of our division, Colonel Stanley
, advancing to my support.
Had it reached me an hour earlier, I feel assured that I would have been able to maintain the position which I had just been compelled to abandon.
I directed Colonel Stanley
to form line of battle at once, at right angles with the road and on its left, facing north.
Returning to Colonel Taylor
, I ordered him to fall back with the Fifteenth Kentucky and One Hundred and Fourth Illinois, and form in rear of the left of Stanley
's line, as a support to it. Soon after we had got our lines adjusted, the enemy pressed back the skirmishers of the Fifteenth Kentucky and One Hundred and Fourth Illinois, who had not been retired with the regiments, and, following them up, drove in also the skirmish line of Stanley
's brigade, whereupon the Eleventh Michigan (Colonel Stoughton
), and the Eighteenth Ohio (Lieutenant-Colonel Grosvenor
), gave him a well-directed volley, which brought him to a halt.
Our whole line then opened at short range, and he wavered.
I gave the order to advance, then to charge, and the brigade rushed forward with a yell, drove the enemy fully one-fourth of a mile, strewing the ground with his dead and wounded, and capturing many prisoners.
Among the latter was General Adams
, the commander of a Louisiana brigade.
Finding now that Colonel Taylor
had not followed the movement with his regiment and the One Hundred and Fourth Illinois, and seeing the necessity for some support for a single line so extended, I hastened to the rear, and, being unable to find Taylor
where I had left him, I induced four regiments, of I know not what command, which I found idle in the woods, to move forward and form a second line.
At this time Captain Wilson
, whom I had sent to General Negley
some time before the Second Brigade reached me, to inform him of my position and need of assistance, returned, and brought from him a verbal order to retire to the hill in the rear and join him. Convinced that the withdrawal of the troops at this time from the position occupied might endanger the whole left wing of the army, I thought best to defer the execution of this order until I could see General Negley
and explain to him the necessity of maintaining and reinforcing it with the other brigade of our division.
But before Captain Wilson
could find either Colonel Taylor
, who had in charge the Fifteenth Kentucky and One Hundred and Fourth Illinois, or General Negley
, the enemy made a fierce attack on Stanley
's brigade and forced it back.
The unknown brigade which I had posted in the rear to support it retired with unseemly haste, and without firing a shot.
At this juncture frightened soldiers and occasional shots were coming from the right and rear of our line,
indicating that the right wing of the army had either been thrown back or changed position.
's brigade, considerably scattered and shattered by the last furious assault of the enemy, was gathered up by its officers and retired to the ridge on the right and to the rear of the original line of battle.
and I made diligent efforts to find Taylor
, but were unable to do so. I was greatly provoked at his retirement without consulting me, and at a time, too, when his presence was so greatly needed to support Stanley
But later in the day I ascertained from him that he had been ordered by Major Lowrie
, General Negley
's chief of staff, to join Negley
and retire with him to Rossville
He also had much to say about saving many pieces of artillery; but it occurred to me that his presence on the field was of much more importance than a few pieces of trumpery artillery off the field.
Why, at any rate, did he not notify me of the order which he had received from the division commander?
The charge of Stanley
's brigade had not occupied to exceed thirty minutes, and as soon as it was ended I had returned to find him gone.
, however, did, doubtless, what he conceived to be his duty, and for the best.
His courage had been tested on too many occasions to allow me to think that anything but an error of judgment, or possibly the belief that under any circumstances he was bound to obey the order of the major-general
commanding the division, could have induced him to abandon me.
Supposing my regiments and General Negley
still on the field, I again dispatched Captain Wilson
in search of them, and in the meantime stationed myself near a fragment of the Second Brigade of our division, and gave such general directions to the troops about me as under the circumstances I felt warranted in doing.
I found abundant opportunity to make myself useful.
Gathering up scattered detachments of a dozen different commands, I filled up an unoccupied space on the ridge between Harker
, of Wood
's division, on the left, and Brannan
, on the right, and this point we held obstinately until sunset.
, Eleventh Michigan; LieutenantColonel Rappin, Nineteenth Illinois; LieutenantColonel Grosvenor
, Eighteenth Ohio; Colonel Hunter
, Eighty-second Indiana; Colonel Hays
and Lieutenant-Colonel Wharton
, Tenth Kentucky; Captain Stinchcomb
, Seventeenth Ohio, and Captain Kendrick
, Seventy-ninth Pennsylvania, were there, each having a few men of their respective commands; and they and their men fought and struggled and clung to that ridge with an obstinate, persistent, desperate courage, unsurpassed, I believe, on any field.
I robbed the dead of cartridges and distributed them to the men; and once when, after a desperate struggle, our troops were driven from the crest, and the enemy's flag waved above it, the men were rallied, and I rode up the hill with them, waving my hat, and shouting like a madman.
Thus we charged, and the enemy only saved his colors by throwing them down the hill.
However much we may say of those who held command, justice compels the acknowledgment
that no officer exhibited more courage on that occasion than the humblest private in the ranks.
About four o'clock we saw away off to our rear the banners and glittering guns of a division coming toward us, and we became agitated by doubt and hope.
Are they friends or foes?
The thunder, as of a thousand anvils, still goes on in our front.
Men fall around us like leaves in autumn.
, and others are in consultation below the hill just in rear of Harker
The approaching troops are said to be ours, and we feel a throb of exultation.
Before they arrive we ascertain that the division is Steedman
's; and finally, as they come up, I recognize my old friend, Colonel Mitchell
, of the One Hundred and Thirteenth.
They go into action on our right, and as they press forward the roar of the musketry redoubles; the battle seems to be working off in that direction.
There is now a comparative lull in our front, and I ride over to the right, and become involved in a regiment which has been thrown out of line and into confusion by another regiment that retreated through it in disorder.
I assist Colonel Mitchell
in rallying it, and it goes into the fight again.
Returning to my old place, I find that disorganized bodies of men are coming rapidly from the left, in regiments, companies, squads, and singly.
I meet General Wood
, and ask if I shall not halt and reorganize them.
He tells me to do so; but I find the task impossible.
They do not recognize me as their commander, and most of them will not
obey my orders.
Some few, indeed, I manage to hold together; but the great mass drift by me to the woods in the rear.
The dead are lying every-where; the wounded are continually passing to the rear; the thunder of the guns and roll of musketry are unceasing and unabated until night-fall.
Then the fury of the battle gradually dies away, and finally we have a silence, broken only by a cheer here and there along the enemy's line.
and I are together near the ridge, where we have been all the afternoon.
We have heard nothing of Negley
nor of my regiments.
We take it for granted, however, that they are somewhere on the field.
As the night darkens we discover a line of fires off to our left and rear, toward McDaniels' house.
That is the place where Negley
should have been in the morning, and we conclude he must be there now.
We have been badly used during the day; but it does not occur to us that our army has been whipped.
We start together to find Negley
We have had nothing to eat since early morning, and so, passing a corn-field, we stop for a moment to fill our pockets with corn; then, proceeding on our way, we pass through an unused field, grown up with brush, and here meet a man coming toward us on horseback.
I said to him, “Are those our troops?”
pointing in the direction of the line of fires.
He answered, “Yes; our troops are on the road and just beyond it.”
Pretty soon we emerged from the brushy woods and entered an open field; just before us was a long line
of fires, and soldiers busily engaged preparing supper.
We had approached to within two hundred feet of them, and could hear the soldiers talk and laugh, as soldiers will, over the incidents of the day, when we discerned that we were riding straight into the enemy's line.
Instantly wheeling our horses, we drove the spurs into them and lay down on their backs.
We had been discovered, and a dozen or more shots were sent after us; but we escaped unharmed.
The man we met in the unused field had mistaken us for Confederate officers.
Two or three shots were fired at us as we approached our own line, but the darkness saved us.
Near eight o'clock in the evening I ascertained, from General Wood
, that the army had been ordered to fall back to Rossville
, and I started at once to inform Colonel Stoughton
and others on the ridge; but I found that they had been apprised of the movement, and were then on the road to the rear.
The march to Rossville
was a melancholy one.
All along the road, for miles, wounded men were lying.
They had crawled or hobbled slowly away from the fury of the battle, become exhausted, and lay down by the roadside to die. Some were calling the names and numbers of their regiments, but many had become too weak to do this; by midnight the column had passed by. What must have been their agony, mental and physical, as they lay in the dreary woods, sensible that there was no one to comfort or to care for them, and that in a few hours more their career on earth would be ended.
At a little brook, which crossed the road, Wilson
and I stopped to water our horses.
The remains of a fire, which some soldiers had kindled, were raked together, and laying a couple of ears of corn on the coals for our own use, we gave the remainder of what we had in our pockets to the poor beasts; they, also, had fasted since early morning.
How many terrible scenes of the day's battle recur to us as we ride on in the darkness.
We see again the soldier whose bowels were protruding, and hear him cry, “Jesus, have mercy on my soul!”
What multitudes of thought were then crowding into the narrow half hour which he had yet to live-what regrets, what hopes, what fears!
The sky was darkening, earth fading; wealth, power, fame, the prizes most esteemed of men, were as nothing.
His only hope lay in the Saviour of whom his mother had taught him. I doubt not his earnest, agonizing prayer was heard.
Nay, to doubt would be to question the mercy of God!
A Confederate boy, who should have been at home with his mother, and whose leg had been fearfully torn by a minnie ball, hailed me as I was galloping by early in the day. He was bleeding to death, and crying bitterly.
I gave him my handkerchief, and shouted back to him, as I hurried on, “Bind up the leg tight!”
The adjutant of the rebel General Adams
called to me as I passed him. He wanted help, but I could not help him-could not even help our own poor boys who lay bleeding near him.
lay on the field wounded; as I
handed him my canteen he said, “General, I did my duty.”
“I know that, Sammy; I never doubted that you would do your duty.”
The most painful recollection to one who has gone through a battle, is that of the friends lying wounded and dying and who needed help so much when you were utterly powerless to aid them.
Between ten and eleven o'clock, at night, I reached Rossville
, and found one of my regiments, the Fortysecond Indiana
, on picket one mile south of that place, and the other regiments encamped near the town.
My men were surprised and rejoiced to see me. It had been currently reported that I was killed.
One fellow claimed to know the exact spot on my body where the ball hit me; while another, not willing to be outdone, had given a minute description of the locality where I fell.
rendered me good service by giving me something to eat and drink, for I was hungry as a wolf.
At this hour of the night (eleven to twelve o'clock) the army is simply a mob. There appears to be neither organization nor discipline.
The various commands are mixed up in what seems to be inextricable confusion.
Were a division of the enemy to pounce down upon us between this and morning, I fear the Army of the Cumberland would be blotted out.
Early this morning the army was again got into order.
Officers and soldiers found their regiments, regiments their brigades, and brigades their divisions.
My brigade was posted on a high ridge,
east of Rossville
and near it. About ten o'clock A. M. it was attacked by a brigade of mounted infantry, a part of Forrest
's command, under Colonel Dibble
After a sharp fight of half an hour, in which the Fifteenth Kentucky, Colonel Taylor
, and the Forty-second Indiana, Lieutenant-Colonel McIntyre
were principally engaged, the enemy was repulsed and retired leaving his dead and a portion of his wounded on the field.
Of his dead, one officer and eight men were left within a few rods of our line.
One little boy, so badly wounded they could not carry him off, said, with tears and sobs, “They have run off and left me in the woods to die.”
I directed the boys to carry him into our lines and care for him.
At midnight, the Fifteenth Kentucky was deployed on the skirmish line; the other regiments of the brigade withdrawn, and started on the way to Chattanooga
A little later the Fifteenth Kentucky quietly retired and proceeded to the same place.
We are at Chattanooga
With the exception of a cold, great exhaustion, and extreme hoarseness, occasioned by much hallooing, I am in good condition.
The rebels have followed us and are taking position in our front.
At midnight the enemy attempted to drive in our pickets, and an engagement ensued, which lasted an hour or more, and was quite brisk.
This morning another furious assault was made on our picket line; but, after a short time, the rebels retired and permitted us to remain quiet for the remainder of the day.
Their pickets are plainly seen from our lines, and their signal flags are discernable on Mission ridge
Occasionally we see their columns moving.
Our army is busily engaged fortifying.
（Sunday.) Had a good night's rest, and am feeling very well.
The day is a quiet one.