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Twentieth Corps.

This corps was formed April 4, 1864, by taking the Twelfth Corps, which was composed of the veteran divisions of Williams and Geary, and adding to it Butterfield's newly organized division. At the same time, two divisions of the Eleventh Corps2 were broken up and distributed to the divisions of Williams, Geary and Butterfield. The badge of the Twelfth Corps was retained, and there was no good reason why its number should not have been retained also; the brigade and division generals of the Twelfth Corps retained their respective commands, and little change was made other than the increase by accessions of transferred material.

Each division now contained three brigades, containing in all 52 regiments of infantry, and 6 batteries of light artillery, numbering 21,280 officers and men present for duty. It was all veteran material, the most of the regiments having served with the Army of the Potomac in many of the greatest battles of the war, and, later on, at Wauhatchie and Lookout Mountain. Major-General Joseph Hooker was placed in command. It was a grand corps, and worthy of the hero who was to lead it.

In addition to the three divisions of Williams, Geary and Butterfield, there was a Fourth Division, under command of Major-General Lovell H. Rousseau. This division was detached on post or garrison duty and never joined the corps; in fact, the men of the Twentieth were unaware of the existence of a Fourth Division. A part of Rousseau's Division was engaged in the Tennessee campaign against Hood, in 1864, and was present at the battle of Nashville.

The Twentieth Corps started, May 4, 1864, on the Atlanta campaign, and during the next four months participated in all the important battles, its hardest fighting occurring at Resaca, May 15th, at New Hope Church, May 25th, and at Peach Tree Creek, July 20th. It was also actively engaged in the investment and siege of Atlanta, sustaining losses daily in killed and wounded while occupying the trenches. During the four months fighting from Chattanooga to Atlanta, it lost over 7,000 men killed, wounded and missing. Before reaching Atlanta, Hooker had a disagreement with Sherman, and asked to be relieved. He was succeeded by Major-General Henry W. Slocum, the former commander of the Twelfth Corps, and one of the ablest generals in the Union armies. General Butterfield, commanding the Third Division, was succeeded during the campaign by General William T. Ward. Upon the evacuation of Atlanta, some troops of the Twentieth Corps--Coburn's Brigade of Ward's Division — were the first to enter and occupy the city, the entire corps remaining there to hold their important prize, while Sherman and the rest of the Army marched in pursuit of Hood.

On November 15, 1864, Sherman and his men started on their grand march through Georgia to the Sea, the Army of the Cumberland--Fourteenth and Twentieth Corps--forming the Right Wing, under command of General Slocum. General A. S. Williams, of the First Division. succeeded to the command of the corps, with Jackson, Geary, and Ward as division generals. When it started on this march, the corps numbered 13,741, present for duty, and contained 47 regiments of infantry, 1 of engineers, 1 of pontoniers, and 4 batteries

1 Rousseau's Fourth Division (20th A. C.) participated in the battle of Nashville.

2 One division of the Eleventh Corps (Schimmelfenning's) had been sent to South Carolina.

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