No. 36.-report of Col. Alvin P. Hovey, Twenty-fourth Indiana Infantry.
camp First Brigade, Third Div., Dept. Of Miss., Battle-field, near Pittsburg Landing, Tenn., April 8, 1862.Sir: On Sunday, the 6th instant, my regiment, in connection with the First Brigade of the Third Division, was ordered to march from Crump's Landing, Tenn., to the field of action at this place. We arrived a little after sundown, while the musketry was still ringing and cannon roaring, with my regiment on the extreme right and in front. Before arriving we had been informed that the enemy occupied the right of the road in force. Under the directions of Colonel Smith, commanding the brigade, skirmishers were thrown out, and my regiment rapidly marched forward and formed in line of battle before some tents, supposed to be occupied by the enemy. On being challenged, however, they proved to be Birge's Sharpshooters, and we were received with cheers instead of bullets. Here the whole brigade bivouacked for the night, sleeping on their arms, under one of the most severe rains of the season. About 5.30 o'clock on Monday morning, the 7th instant, the battle  open d on our left by forces supposed to be under command of General Buell. Our brigade was immediately formed in line of battle, my regiment upon the extreme left, in an open field, and marched rapidly on what I supposed to be the center of the enemy. About 6.30 o'clock a. m. we threw out skirmishers in advance, and received the first fire of the enemy. From this point we passed through a small woodland ravine into an open field, and at a double-quick rushed rapidly forward to a slight depression, where our men were halted to support one of our batteries, which was playing with deadly effect upon one of the rebel batteries. At this point we again threw out skirmishers, who fired with terrible effect upon the officers and men who were manning the rebel batteries. The enemy being again driven back, our brigade was thrown in advance of our artillery into a narrow skirt of woods between two fields. Here we were halted a short time, and the shell and shot of our battery and the battery of the enemy rained thick and fast above and around us. Again the enemy slowly retired in order, and we were pressed rapidly through another field, halted, threw out skirmishers, and a stubborn conflict ensued. About 11 o'clock a. m. three gallant officers of my regimentLieutenant-Colonel Gerber, Captain McGuffin, and Lieutenant Southwick-fell. Captain Spicely, Captain Bolton, Lieutenant Smith, Lieutenant Butler, and several non-commissioned officers and privates were wounded. Our skirmishers and battery again forced the rebel forces back, and our brigade followed rapidly into the woods, and a terrible conflict of musketry ensued, which continued for several hours, the enemy contesting every inch, but retiring before us. During the day every company of my regiment was deployed as skirmishers and did good service. They were generally under the superintendence of Captain Spicely, who acted as major until the fall of Lieutenant-Colonel Gerber. From that time Captain Spicely acted as lieutenant-colonel and Adjutant Barter as major of the regiment. I cannot speak too highly of their effective services on that occasion. They were cool, brave, and determined, and had the full confidence of the men. Captain Spicely, though wounded and stunned by a ball on the.temple, continued on the field the whole day and performed the full duties of a true soldier. I say, with a pride I cannot conceal, that the Twenty-fourth never faltered nor gave back one inch from the first charge in the morning until the enemy gave way in the evening. In an exposed condition in the open field, over hill, valley, and woodland for more than 3 miles, assailed by every missile known in modern war, their march was onward, with loud cheers and full confidence in victory. The conduct of my officers and men meets with my unqualified approbation. I herewith transmit a list of the killed and wounded of my regiment.1 Permit me, through you, to tender to Col. Morgan L. Smith my thanks for the cool, brave, determined, and effective manner in which he managed our brigade during that glorious and trying day. I am, sir, most respectfully, your obedient servant,