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No. 123.-report of Col. William S. Smith, Thirteenth Ohio Infantry, commanding Fourteenth Brigade.

Shiloh fields, Tenn., April 11, 1862.
Sir: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by the Fourteenth Brigade in the engagement of Monday, the 7th instant, at this place:

The brigade, after having bivouacked during the night of the 6th instant on the hill near the Pittsburg Landing, was put in motion at 6 o'clock a. m. on the 7th and marched to the front, and placed in position in prolongation of the line of General Nelson's division, then hotly engaged. The Fourteenth Wisconsin Volunteers, temporarily attached to my brigade, was drawn up in line of battle on the right, the Thirteenth [366] Ohio on the left, and the Twenty-sixth Kentucky in the center. The Eleventh Kentucky was held in reserve, and placed 200 yards in the rear of the center of our line of battle, in a position covered by the crest of a hill, along which our line of battle extended. Two companies oi skirmishers, one from the Eleventh and one from the Twentysixth Kentucky, were then deployed to the front. The skirmishers on our right soon engaged those of the enemy in an open field in front of the right of our line. The enemy's skirmishers retired, and all was quiet in front of our line for nearly one hour, when our skirmishers again engaged those of the enemy, and this was soon followed by a furious attack upon our whole front. The right recoiled, while the left and center stood firm. The Twenty-sixth Kentucky was then sent forward to support our right, and a heavy cross-fire to our front was opened from Bartlett's battery, which was in position on our right. The enemy soon yielded, when a running fight commenced, which extended for about one mile to our front, where we captured a battery and shot the horses and many of the cannoneers. Owing to the obstructed nature of the ground, the enthusiastic courage of the majority of our men, the laggard discharge of their duty by many, and the disgraceful cowardice of some, our line had been transformed into a column of attack, representing the various grades of courage from reckless daring to ignominious fear.

At the head of this column stood a few heroic men, not adequately supported, when the enemy returned to the attack with three fresh regiments in good order. We were driven back by these nearly to the first position occupied by our line, when we again rallied and moved forward toward the battery. Reaching a ravine to the right, and about 600 paces from the battery, we halted and awaited the assistance of Mendenhall's battery, which was brought into action on a knoll within half a mile of the enemy's battery, which it immediately silenced. We then advanced and captured it the second time, and succeeded in holding it, despite the efforts of the enemy to repulse us. One of the guns was at once turned upon the enemy, and Mendenhall's battery was advanced to nearly the same position and opened fire upon the flank of the enemy's column, then retiring before General McCook's division on our right. This occurred at about half past 3 o'clock p. m. and up to this time, from 8 o'clock in the morning, my brigade had been almost constantly engaged.

The Thirteenth Ohio and Eleventh and Twenty-sixth Kentucky Regiments seemed to vie with each other in determined valor, and while they each have cause to regret and detest the conduct of a few of their officers and men, they may proudly exult over the glorious part which they took as regiments in the bloody engagement of Shiloh fields.

I beg leave to make a special mention of the gallant conduct of the field and staff officers of the Thirteenth Ohio and Eleventh and Twentysixth Kentucky Regiments, who without exception bore themselves as true soldiers and efficient officers through the dangers of the day. I desire also to mention the gallant conduct of Lieut. Frank J. Jones, of the Thirteenth Ohio, acting assistant adjutant-general, and Lieut. R. E. Hackett, of the Twenty-sixth Kentucky, acting aide-de-camp, whose conduct throughout the day was marked by great coolness and courage.

I herewith inclose the reports of the commanders of the several regiments constituting my brigade, and would beg to refer to them for many particulars which escaped my own observation, as also for the [367] lists of killed, wounded, and missing; which in the aggregate amount to, in killed, 23; in wounded, 156; in missing, 9; making a total of 188.1

Very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

W. S. Smith, Colonel Thirteenth Ohio, Comdg. Fourteenth Brigade. Capt Lyne Starling, Assistant Adjutant-General.

1 But see revised statement, p. 107.

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