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[196] and in annoying the enemy from our picket line and with the artillery as much as was consistent with an economical expenditure of ammunition. I refer to the operations of the division during this month with pleasure, as evincing a spirit and determination on the part of the troops, as well as an alacrity and skill in the performance of every duty on the part of their officers, worthy of the highest praise. To the brigade commanders (Deas, Brantley, Sharp and Manigault) I am specially indebted for their prompt obedience to every order and cheerful co-operation in every thing tending to promote the efficiency of the command and the good of the service. Their sympathy, counsel and hearty co-operation lightened my burden of responsibility and contributed to the esprit du corps, discipline and good feeling which, happily, pervade the division, and without which the bravest troops in the world cannot be relied on.

On the night of the 25th August our scouts reported a movement on the part of the enemy, the precise character of which was not fully understood, but which was indicated by the rumbling of artillery and wagons, &c. On the next morning it was ascertained that he had withdrawn from the front of a portion of the line occupied by Lieutenant-General Stewart's corps, which was on the right of Lee's corps. During the night of the 26th he withdrew from my front. As this movement was not unlooked for by us, preparations for it had been accordingly made. At about 9 o'clock P. M. each of our batteries delivered a few rounds for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not a reply could be elicited. With the exception of one or, perhaps, two pieces on my extreme left, there was no response along my whole front. Before daylight on the morning of the 27th our skirmishers occupied a portion of the enemy's main works without opposition. By direction of the Lieutenant-General commanding the corps, Deas' brigade, with Jackson's, of Bates' division, of Hardee's corps, Brigadier-General H. R. Jackson commanding the whole, were sent forward in pursuit on the Lickskillet road. They advanced cautiously a distance of six or seven miles to within a short distance of the Chattahoochee river, and, coming upon a force of the enemy deemed too strong to be assailed by the two brigades, the command was halted, and Brigadier-General Jackson reported the facts and awaited further instructions; whereupon the two brigades

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