Oates, Fifteenth Alabama, Law's brigade, came up on the right of the Seventh and occupied the line between that and the Fifteenth, and with those regiments advanced without orders. I had sent to the right to direct that I should be informed when Humphreys arrived. Hearing the firing renewed on my right, I advanced the left wing, Third South Carolina, James' battalion, and Second South Carolina, and gained, in some points, the crest of the hill within a few yards of the enemy's lines. After one of the most gallant struggles I have ever witnessed, especially on the part of the Third South Carolina and James' battalion, which occupied a position in front of the enemy's battery, I was compelled to fall back to a point about two hundred and fifty yards, where I determined to hold the enemy until reinforcements arrived. The enemy soon advanced, but, by a cool, deliberate fire, was quickly repulsed. General Humphreys reported that he could make no further advance on account of the heavy force of the enemy to his right. I directed him to make such disposition of his troops as would cover my right flank. About three o'clock Brigadier-General Anderson's Mississippi brigade came to my support. I described to him the situation, and suggested an attack on the right flank of the position of the enemy. He acquiesced in my view and advanced his left preparatory to the movement, covering his front with skirmishers, who immediately became engaged, and drove in those of the enemy, but, raising a shout along their lines, they advanced their line of battle at a charge, driving back Anderson's brigade in some confusion. With hearty cheers the Second and Third South Carolina and James' battalion engaged them with the utmost enthusiasm; Anderson's brigade promptly re-formed and opened fire. His reserve regiment came up, and, in ten minutes time, the enemy was driven pell-mell. The Second South Carolina and Anderson's brigade dashed after him and drove him to the top of the hill, the Second South Carolina reaching the crest. The troops to his left having fallen back to their former position, Lieutenant-Colonel Gaillard says, in his report, that “he was obliged, reluctantly, to fall back.” This was an attack on the right flank of the enemy, and the line was at an oblique angle to my line. All of my regiments, except the Second, though not participating in the direct attack, served to hold the enemy in position along that portion of the line, and were mostly engaged during the attack. About four o'clock Gracie's and Kelly's brigades came up and reported to me. I directed them, I the former to form on my rear, and the latter to form on Gracie's left. General Hindman informed me that he was about to attack on Anderson's left, well on the right flank of the enemy, with two brigades of infantry, with artillery. Soon after, he opened heavily in that direction, but sent me word the attack was likely to fail unless a demonstration was made along the front. I determined on an attack, combining all our forces. McNair's brigade, which had come up on my right, Gracie's, Kelly's, Anderson's, my Eighth, Fifteenth, and Second regiments participating. The rest of my brigade being, in whole or in part, out of ammunition, remained in reserve at their position. This was one of the heaviest attacks of the war on a single point. The brigades went in in magnificent order; General Gracie, under my own eye, led his brigade, now for the first time under fire, most gallantly and efficiently, and, for more than an hour and a half, the struggle continued with unabated fury. It terminated at sunset — the Second South Carolina being among the last to retire. At dark General Robinson, of Hood's division, came up with his brigade and picketed to my front. About ten o'clock, I think, he informed me that the enemy had left. I immediately communicated the fact to the Lieutenant-General commanding. In the morning General Robinson withdrew, and I sent forward Lieutenant-Colonel Gaillard to take possession of the enemy's hospital and to picket to the front. The day was spent in caring for the wounded, burying the dead, and collecting arms. In the afternoon Major-General McLaws resumed command of the division. My brigade was marched a few miles that night towards Chattanooga, and next day drove in the enemy to their present lines, in conjunction with Wofford's brigade, my Eighth South Carolina being chiefly engaged. But few men were lost in this affair. During the first charge of the twentieth my brigade captured nine pieces of artillery, three of which were taken by the Eighth South Carolina, and some half dozen caissons,with ammunition. Most of these were taken before they could open fire. My losses were heavy, as will be seen by reference to the accompanying detailed report. Among them are some of the most gallant and efficient officers and men of my command, and choice spirits of Carolina chivalry. Lieutenant-Colonel Elbert Bland, Seventh South Carolina, fell at the head of his regiment in the first moment of our triumph. A few moments later, Major John S. Hard, his successor. was instantly killed. The command then devolved on Captain E. J. Goggin. Captain J. M. Townsend, commanding James' battalion, was killed, leading the charge upon the enemy's stronghold. Lieutenant-Colonel Hoole, Eighth South Carolina regiment, was killed in the early part of the action. Lieutenant-Colonel Bland was recognized generally as an officer of rare ability. His power of command, his cool, dauntless courage and self-control in battle, his excellent judgment, disciplinary skill and ability in camp, marked him as a man of a high order of military talent. His personal and social characteristics were equally noble and elevated. In him we have lost a champion worthy of our glorious cause. Major John S. Hard was a gallant and accomplished officer, and has highly distinguished himself on every battle-field in which his regiment has been engaged. Captain Townsend commanded his battalion, on this occasion, in such a manner as to elicit my commendation
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.