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[528] At fifty minutes past twelve P. M. I received a note from General Palmer, dated thirty-five minutes past twelve P. M., stating that his division was just going in; enemy said to be in heavy force; fight is raging, but principally on his left flank. At fifteen minutes past one P. M. I wrote to General Wood, reporting the heavy fight, that Van Cleve and Palmer were hotly in, and that we must look out for his left. I then sent Colonel Starling, my Chief of Staff, to Department Headquarters, reporting General Van Cleve heavy in the fight, and asking that I might move also General Wood to assist. He shortly returned with the request granted, and I despatched Major Mendenhall to bring him up. The enemy appeared to have troops enough to fight us everywhere, and to fill up every interval as soon as my divisions passed. At two P. M. I received your despatch of forty-five minutes past one P. M., advising me that he had ordered General McCook to relieve me — to take command of my corps-and to take the best positions possible; also, that General Sheridan would come in if necessary on my right, and to take care of my right. On receipt of this note, the firing having ceased for a time, I immediately rode rapidly to headquarters, hoping to get final instructions before General Wood's command arrived, and returned just as General Wood, with his two brigades, came up to a position, that General Davis, of Major-General McCook's corps, was fighting over on the right of General Van Cleve. Colonel Barnes's brigade, Van Cleve's division, had been left back with General Wood, came up just in advance of Wood's two brigades, and had gone into position through the woods to the right of General Davis.

I rode forward to a battery, which I understood belonged to General Davis, when I was told that I would find both he and General Wood. Neither of them was there, and I rode back in search of General Wood. I had instructed Lieutenant-Colonel Starling to say to General Wood that in coming to the field he might have an opportunity, by leaving the road before he reached our position and moving to his right, to strike the enemy on the flank. I should regret that I had not sent an order instead of a mere suggestion, but that the Commanding General condemned the movement when I informed him that I had suggested it to General Wood. Colonel Barnes moved in the direction, and Colonel Harker, of Wood's division, was going into position on the right of Colonel Barnes, when Lieutenant-Colonel Starling, at the solicitation of General Davis, who was then being pressed by the enemy, recalled Colonel Harker, and in this way he was brought down the road beyond the position that Colonel Barnes had taken in the woods on Davis's right, and Colonel Buell with his brigade followed after Colonel Harker.

General Wood reached the field but a short time before the enemy attacked our right on Saturday evening, and had General Wood been in the position I suggested, he would have been on the flank of the enemy, and I think would have punished him severely.

Colonel Buck went into position first off the road on the right, and to the rear of General Davis's battery, which was firing over an open field at the enemy in the woods, who could be seen plainly by their bayonets glistening. In the mean time General Wood with Harker's brigade had passed still further down the road, and went into position on Colonel Buell's left, striking the woods as he left the road. In Colonel Buell's front there was a large gap in the woods recently a corn-field.

The enemy in front of Colonel Buell came out at this time, and he with his men, lying down suipporting Davis's battery, fell back in some confusion. All crossed the road through another open field, in which I and my staff were on a high point, when they came into the woods again, along the edge of which Colonel Wilder, with his brigade, was lying. His men soon opened fire, and when I ordered the artillery that was at hand to be put in position along the edge of the woods, under this superintendence of Major Mendenhall, he opened fire rapidly from twenty-six guns, and soon checked and drove the enemy to the cover of his own woods.

Our loss in this brief conflict was quite severe. General Wood and Colonel Buell were present, and were very active in rallying the men and restoring them to order. Soon after accomplishing this, Colonel Buell's brigade again advanced, General Carlin and his command cooperating, and reoccupied their former position. About this time General Sheridan came up through the woods I was in, and promptly sent in a brigade to support these troops. Soon after this, I received your note of three forty-five P. M. and four thirty-five P. M., stating that Davis was heavily pressed, and ordering me to assist him, if I could, with some of my command. At four forty-five P. M., I received your note of three-ten P. M., stating that Johnson was driving the rebels handsomely in the centre; that he had taken many prisoners, and expected to drive the enemy across Chickamauga to-night. Colonel Barnes, with his brigade, I had heard from as being in a commanding position and in good order. Generals Palmer and Van Cleve I had not heard from since they went in. Night was coming on, and I left for Department Headquarters, where, after sitting in council with the Commanding General, other corps commanders, and some general officers, I received, at midnight, the following order:

headquarters Department of the Cumberland, Widow Glenn's house, Sept. 19, 1863--1020 P. M.
General: The General Commanding directs me to inform you that General McCook has been ordered to hold this Gap to-morrow, covering the Dry Valley road, his right resting near this place, his left connecting with General Thomas's right. The General places your corps in reserve to-morrow, and directs you to post it on the eastern slope of Missionary Ridge, to support McCook or Thomas. Leave the grand guard

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