the wood in front, thus finding a better and more secure position, and some cover for their men from the murderous fire which they were gallantly sustaining. The centre and left, however, soon became earnestly engaged. Having no eligible position for artillery near the centre, I was compelled to post Carnes' battery (Steuben artillery) on the left of the Thirty-eighth Tennesse regiment, being the extreme left of my position; supposing, too, at that time, that I would be supported on the left by the brigades both of Brigadier-General Maney and Brigadier-general Strahl. My position was near the foot of a declivity, gently rising towards the left and presenting on that flank the highest ground on our line, and therefore the best position for artillery; while that of the enemy was on an eminence rising from the drain or low ground just in our front, many feet above ours, and protected by works probably thrown up the previous night. Immediately after the enemy's fire was opened, I dispatched the order to commence firing to each of the commanding officers of regiments, which was executed promptly, and with coolness and precision. I have reason to believe that the effect of our firing upon the enemy was terrific, from the report of a wounded officer, who fell into the hands of the enemy and subsequently escaped, and from a careful survey of the battle-ground by some of the men after the action. The enemy opened upon us a cross fire of two batteries, and a concentrated shower of musket shot from a greatly superior force, their line extending the full length of a brigade beyond my unsupported left. Our men met the terrible fire which was hurled upon them, with constancy, coolness, and undaunted courage, bearing the shock like veterans, and not perceptibly wavering beneath its severity, and returning shot for shot, as far as their inferiority of numbers would allow. After sustaining this fire for three hours and a half, from twelve M. to three and a half P. M., seeing that Brigadier General Smith, immediately on my right, had withdrawn from the field, and learning from some of my officers that their ammunition was nearly exhausted, I determined to order the brigade to retire. Before, however, I could give orders to execute this movement, a courier informed me that the enemy was flanking my position, which upon moving in that direction, I distinctly discovered, seeing his line moving through the ravine and under-growth upon the left flank. I then dispatched orders to the Colonels and commander of the battery to withdraw to a hill about a quarter of a mile in the rear. Discovering at this opportune moment a supporting brigade approaching in line of battle, and not being able to move rapidly enough to communicate with the General commanding (Brigadier General Clayton), in consequence of my being dismounted, I requested the Colonel commanding the leading regiment to move to my left and protect the men in retiring, which he did promptly and efficiently. At the same time I informed him that the enemy was flanking our position. Each of the regiments was withdrawn slowly and in good order. Although all the horses of the battery, except three, were killed, and about one half of the company shot down, either killed or wounded, thus rendering the battery useless to check the advance of the enemy's flanking force, Captain Carnes, First Lieutenant Marshall and Second Lieutenant Cockrell, of the artillery, remained with the battery until they received orders to retire, narrowly escaping capture, and gallantly standing at their posts until the last moment. Second Lieutenant Van Vleck gallantly died at his post. After retiring from the field I at once dispatched a staff officer to Major-General Cheatham, advising him of the position of the brigade, and informing him of the fact that our ammunition was nearly exhausted, which was promptly supplied. After five o'clock P. M., the brigade was again ordered to take position about four hundred yards to the right of the ground on which we had fought the enemy. Major-General Cleburne's division and Smith's brigade, of Major General Cheatham's division, at about six o'clock P. M., on our immediate right, made a most gallant and successful movement upon the enemy's position; but my brigade was not ordered to participate in the glorious charge which cost the lives of many brave patriots, and among them the heroic General Preston Smith. Having bivouacked at this position on Saturday night, on Sunday morning, a line of battle was again formed and held steadily for three hours under a most harassing fire from the enemy's batteries. One man of the Sixteenth Tennessee regiment was severely wounded by a round shot. About one o'clock P. M., I was ordered to move the brigade around to the right of our position, following Maney in moving by the right flank. About six o'clock P. M., Maney being on our left, I was ordered to follow his movements in line of battle. Major-General Walker's division and Brigadier-General Jackson's brigade, of Cheatham's division, were already engaged fiercely in assaulting a fortified position of the enemy, at which a very large force of his artillery had been concentrated. A furious contest was raging, with wild and terrible carnage. Though the gallant troops of Walker and Jackson held their position with unsurpassed stubbornness and heroism, yet the enemy, encouraged by the strength, natural and artificial, of his position, and his concentrated forces, was making a most stubborn fight. At this critical moment the two brigades (General Maney's and my own) were precipitated, with a deafening hurrah, and a rapid shock, to support our gallant comrades, who were contending against unequal odds. The men were in the highest spirits and moved forward with an animation that I have never seen surpassed. At this time the scene was one of the most animated and exciting that can be imagined. The whole issue of the
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Doc . 62 .-Hoisting the Black flag — official correspondence and reports.
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