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[463] the Forty-fourth Tennessee drove the enemy's skirmishers back, leaving many of his dead in our front. My skirmishers were sent forward and very soon they became again engaged, the enemy using his artillery. About ten A. M., a general advance was ordered. The left of the brigade had advanced but a short distance before it became engaged with the enemy, the battle having commenced some three hours earlier on the right. The Seventeenth Tennessee recrossed the Chattanooga and Lafayette road, when it engaged the enemy. The whole line crossing the fence, the engagement became general. Here we passed a house and garden, and through an open field (it was here that Lieutenant-Colonel Ready, of the Twenty-third Tennessee, was wounded, while rushing forward). On entering the house, cribs, &c., many prisoners, both officers and men, were captured, and here some fine swords were taken from the enemy. Among the prisoners was the Colonel of the One Hundredth Illinois regiment. The enemy's breastworks, which had been built at intervals along his line, offered but a poor assistance to the enemy to resist our advance, which was not only vigorous and spirited, but irresistible; we found he had a second line of breastworks about eighty yards in rear of the first, made of logs and rocks, behind which they scarcely halted.

Having driven the enemy from his first position, we halted and re-formed our line in front of a dense, low, pine thicket. Pressing forward, we carried this position, the dead of the enemy showing how good a protection he had calculated on. We passed through a stubble wheat field to a ravine, until we reached the edge of a long, open field, the upper side of which being a bald hill, or high ridge, upon which the enemy had a heavy battery of nine guns, firing upon the advancing line on our right. Without delay the field was entered and charged across, and the ridge, or bald hill, was gained, the troops on our right having flanked and silenced the enemy's battery, which was captured. Everett's battery was immediately brought up, together with Dent's, which were opened upon the enemy's retreating wagon train, moving on the Chattanooga and Crawfish Spring road. I sent forward skirmishers to reconnoitre the hollow beneath, where was found the enemy's telegraph running up the Chattanooga and Crawfish Spring road, several hundred yards to our right. This telegraph was cut down, and several prisoners captured; among the prisoners a staff officer of Major-General Vancleve, and one of General Rosecrans' escort, with their horses and equipments. The effect of our batteries was fine, the enemy rapidly retreating. A mounted officer was dispatched to the troops on our left, who had not kept pace with us, with a flag, to show and direct them to our position; they had already opened one of their batteries upon our position, having taken us for the enemy; their battery was playing on us from the second hill on our left. Having received orders to move to the hollow beneath, we here changed direction to the right, which threw the line almost perpendicular to the former; this done, I marched forward, entering a corn field. Here we began to see the fruits of our rapid and continuous movements. Three twelve-pounder brass field pieces and three caissons were here captured, and nine four-horse wagons, one of which, with four mules attached, was immediately sent to the rear; three of these wagons were laden with ordnance, the others with commissary and quartermasters' stores. Some of the wagons were capsized, so utter was their confusion. I immediately found that my left flank was exposed, and sent forward a heavy line of skirmishers to cover both my left flank and front, and advanced the brigade to the hill-side, and there halted. I also sent forward a party to reconnoitre the front in advance of the line of skirmishers, who, after an absence of an hour, reported the enemy about one and a half miles distant and advancing. In the meantime, I had learned of the enemy having skirmishers, or that occasional shots were fired from the hill on my left, running almost at right angles with the one on which I was then resting. I sent immediately a company of skirmishers to reconnoitre the hill — a few prisoners were brought in. In the corner of the field, below my present position, was Villette's house, where the enemy had practised many outrages; the ladies were found lying under the floor of the house, and, when they saw the enemy retreating and our line advancing, they broke from their concealment, shouting and clapping their hands for joy. A delay of an hour occurred whilst waiting the movement of some troops to our left, under orders from General B. R. Johnson. During this time, however, a portion of Dent's and Everett's batteries were placed in position in front of the brigade, and we replenished our cartridge-boxes from the enemy's three wagons, laden with ordnance, which had been captured here.

Between one and two o'clock P. M., I advanced to the top of the hill, when we were again upon the enemy, who opened a heavy fire upon us. Our batteries and small arms here were engaging the enemy some fifteen minutes, when our line fell back some fifteen paces under cover of the hill, Gregg's command, on my right, giving back at the same time — this, no doubt, having started the backward movement. Just at this time the two brigades (Day's and one other) were marching in line of battle by the Villette house, to connect with our lines on the left, they changing direction to the right for this purpose. A general advance was ordered, and our batteries opened simultaneously. The firing was heavy, and the enemy's massive columns were hurled against our wearied heroes. Again our line fell back. Two brigades now came up in our rear; one of these brigades moved in advance of us, and, receiving the enemy's fire, fell back behind us again. My line was again ordered forward, the enemy being within fifty yards of the batteries and but one piece firing. Here commenced

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