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[684] by a block-house at Overall's creek, five miles north, which was attacked1 by Bate's division of Cheatham's corps, but firmly held till Gen. Milroy, with three or four regiments, came out from Murfreesboroa, and repelled the assailants. During the next three days, a division of Lee's corps and 2,500 of Forrest's cavalry reenforced Bate, and Fortress Rosecrans was threatened, but not really assaulted; Buford's cavalry finally shelling and charging2 into Murfreesboroa, but being promptly driven out by a regiment of infantry. The Rebel cavalry moved hence north to Lebanon, and threatened to cross the Cumberland, but found it patroled by gunboats and drew off. Gen. Milroy, being this day sent out from Murfreesboroa with 7 regiments of infantry, attacked the Rebels on the Wilkeson pike, driving them and taking 207 prisoners, with 2 guns; losing 30 killed and 175 wounded.

Hood had established3 his lines south of Nashville, with his salient on Montgomery hill, opposite our center, and but 600 yards distant. Wilson, with cavalry, was across the river at Gallatin, watching for raiders from Forrest's command. And now ensued a week of severe cold, wherein both armies were nearly torpid: the Rebels, worse clad and more exposed, probably suffering more sensibly. When at length the temperature softened,4 Thomas issued orders for a general advance on our right next day; to cover which, Gen. Steedman, on our left, sharply and successfully attacked the enemy's right that evening: pushing it back toward Hood's center, and causing a movement from that center to its support.

Morning broke5 auspiciously. The weather was still mild, and a dense fog, lasting till near noon, concealed our movements. Gen. A. J. Smith. with his thinned corps, with Wilson's cavalry on his right, now moved out on the Hardin pike, to flank the left of the enemy's infantry; while Johnson's cavalry division, advancing on the Charlotte pike, struck at Chalmers's cavalry on that wing and a Rebel battery, posted at Bell's landing on the Cumberland, which he attacked late that afternoon, in conjunction with our gunboats under Lt.-Com'r Fitch. They did not carry it; but it was evacuated during the ensuing night.

Hatch's division of Wilson's cavalry first struck the enemy; driving him from his position, and taking prisoners and wagons. Swinging slightly to the left, Hatch, dismounting his men, assaulted and carried a redoubt, taking four guns, and turning them on their late possessors. A second stronger redoubt was soon reached; and this, too, was carried: the spoils being four more guns and 300 prisoners. McArthur's division of Smith's infantry, closing on the left of the cavalry, cooperated in these assaults, so far as the impetuous charges of the cavalry allowed them a chance to do so.

The 4th corps, Gen. T. J. Wood commanding (because of Stanley's wound), had moved parallel with Smith, closing on his left, and had also, about 1 P. M., assaulted Montgomery hill: the assault being immediately delivered by Col. Sidney P. Post, 59th Illinois, with the 3d brigade of the 2d (Wagner's) division, who gallantly carried the work,

1 Dec. 4.

2 Dec. 8.

3 Dec. 4.

4 Dec. 14.

5 Dec. 15.

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