the line, and observing the same inclination to the rear. Soon thereafter, I received notice that General Wood's brigade was in my front, and that the general movement would be a successive one, by brigades, commencing on the right, and was ordered by Major-General Stewart to follow up the movement of General Deshler. After waiting, under a severe and incessant fire of artillery, until about eleven o'clock A. M., I communicated to General Stewart that no movement on my right had taken place; that General Deshler had been killed, and I desired to know if I should longer remain inactive. About this this time there was firing in my front, and soon thereafter General Wood's command came back, passing over my line. I was then ordered by Major-General Stewart to advance and attack. My command received the order with a shout, and moved upon the foe at a rapid gait. The battalion of sharpshooters was ordered to maintain its position at right angles to the line, and check, if possible, if not to delay, any movement in that direction, giving the earliest notice of the same. My right, as upon the evening previous, became hotly engaged almost the instant it assumed the offensive. It was subject to a most galling fire of grape and musketry from my right oblique and front, cutting down with great fatality the Twentieth Tennessee and Thirty-seventh Georgia at every step, until they drove the enemy behind his defenses, from which, without support, either of artillery or infantry, they were unable to dislodge him. General Deshler's brigade not having advanced, I called on Major General Cleburne, who was near my right and rear, for assistance; but he having none at his disposal which could be spared, I was compelled to retire that wing of my brigade, or sacrifice it in uselessly fighting thrice its numbers, with the advantage of the hill and breastworks against it. I did so in good order, and without indecent haste, and aligned it first in front and then placed it in rear of our flimsy defenses. My left, the Fifty-eighth Alabama, and Fifteenth and Thirty-seventh Tennessee, the latter under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Frazier, Colonel Tyler having been wounded, being further from the enemy's line than my right, did not so soon become engaged, neither at this time subject to so severe a cross-fire, proceeded steadily on and drove the enemy behind his works, which had been constructed the night previous, on the very spot we had driven them from, and maintained their position with a dogged tenacity until the Twentieth Tennessee and Thirty-seventh Georgia were put in position behind the barricade, and the battalion of sharpshooters drawn in. The artillery of the enemy had ceased to play upon us, except at slow intervals, and a part of their (Tyler and Jones) commands having already returned, I dispatched Lieutenant Blanchard, of my staff, to ascertain their situation, who reported that he met them returning with the balance of their commands in good order. I placed them in position and awaited orders. I am unable to give as accurate an account of my left as of my right, for the reason that the right became first engaged, and the commanders of the three right battalions having been wounded the evening previous, devolving the command on junior officers, I felt that my personal services were most needed there, which prevented my witnessing, so as to give in detail, the incidents connected with that portion of the field. I found, however, their dead in the breastworks of the enemy, which is the highest evidence that can be afforded of what they did. In this fight, my command lost thirty per cent. killed and wounded, in addition to the heavy loss of the evening before. After a short respite, Major-General Stewart ordered my command (which still held its position in the front line) to the left, where it would be more secure from the artillery missiles of the enemy on my right. Here we remained until about five P. M., when I was orderd to form in the rear of General Clayton, and join him in taking the batteries and breastworks on our right, from which we bad suffered so heavily during the day. I changed front forward on my right battalion, and, together with General Clayton's brigade, soon were over the fortifications, driving the enemy in confusion and capturing a number of prisoners. In this charge, Captain Tankersly commanded the Fifteenth and Thirty-seventh Tennessee, Lieutenant-Colonel Frazier having been wounded. The Eufala light artillery, Captain Oliver had kept close to my infantry, nothwithstanding the obstruction of a dense wood; took position inside the fortifications, and opened a rapid and destructive fire upon the retreating foe until the curtain of night closed upon the the scene. I claim for this battery the honor of opening on Friday evening, and closing on Sunday evening, the battle of Chickamauga. My brigade went into the fight with muskets in the hands of one third of the men, but after the first charge on Saturday evening, every man was supplied with a good Enfield rifle and ammunition to suit, which was used with effect on their orginal owners the next day. The dead and wounded of the enemy, over which we passed in driving them back on Saturday and Sunday, gave an earnest of the telling effect produced upon them in both days' fight. Besides arming itself with Enfield rifles, a detail from my command, under supervision of my ordnance officer, James E. Rice, gathered upon the field and conveyed to the ordnance train about two thousand efficient guns. The pieces captured by Colonel Tyler, and those in which Colonel Jones participated in the capture, were taken to the rear and turned over to proper officers. My command entered the fight, Friday evening, with one thousand and fifty-five guns, thirty provost guard, and a fair complement of officers, out of which number it lost seven officers and fifty-nine men killed, and five hundred and forty-one wounded, sixty-one of whom were officers, making a total of six hundred and seven.
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Doc . 62 .-Hoisting the Black flag ��� official correspondence and reports.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.