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[441] with Geary, and all moving together toward Bragg and Chattanooga. In the progress of the movement, the narrowness of the crest compelled a division of Cruft's command into two lines.

The enemy's front was protected by breastworks, thrown up by our men while holding here in front of Bragg's triumphant army during the night and day following the fight of Chickamauga, and they seemed disposed to hold on; but that was not to be. As their skirmishers advanced to check our movement, the 9th and the 36th Indiana sprang forward, forming line under their fire, and, instantly charging, drove them back; while the residue of our column formed line: Gross's brigade, with the 51st Ohio and 35th Indiana, in advance; the residue of Whitaker's brigade, closely supporting; Geary and Osterhaus advancing abreast of them; and all, at a charging pace, swept on, pushing back all opposition; every attempt of the enemy to make a stand being defeated by a withering flank-fire from Geary and Osterhaus, who gathered up as prisoners all who sought escape by flight down the ridge. Osterhaus alone took 2,000 of them. Those who fled along the ridge were intercepted by Johnson's division of Thomas's corps, who were now advancing from the direction of Chattanooga. At sunset, Hooker halted for the night, there being no more enemies in his front; his troops going into bivouac on the rocky steeps they had so nobly won.

Gen. Sherman, who had been fortifying his position during the night, received orders to attack at daylight this morning, and did so; finding the ground far more difficult than he had anticipated. The ridge was not continuous, but a succession of eminences: that which he had carried being commanded by that in his front, across quite a valley; its crest covered with forest, and bristling with breastworks and abatis. But, difficult as was the task, these works must be carried; and by sunrise Sherman had completed his dispositions and given the order to advance.

Gen. Corse, with a regiment from Lightburn's brigade, was directed to advance along the ridge; Gen. Morgan L. Smith to move along its cast base, connecting with Corse; Col. Loomis, in like manner, was to advance along its west base, supported by two reserve brigades under Gen. John E. Smith. And thus our line moved on: the 40th Illinois, supported by the 20th and 46th Ohio, pushing directly down the face of the hill held by Sherman and up that held by the enemy, to within eighty yards of the Rebel intrenchments, where Gen. Corse found a secondary crest, which he gained and held; calling up his reserves, and preparing to assault, when a hand-to-hand contest was maintained for an hour with varying success and heavy loss on our part; but Corse was unable to carry the enemy's works, as were they to drive him from his sheltering hill. But Gen. Morgan L. Smith on one side, and Col. Loomis on the other, gained ground on the flanks, though John E. Smith's supporting brigades recoiled before a sudden and heavy artillery fire, giving the impression in Chattanooga that Sherman was losing ground. Yet no ground was really lost by our advance; and an attempt to pursue

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William T. Sherman (4)
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