front of the latter.
Beauregard had massed his forces on his right the evening previous, under General Bragg, to grasp the Landing, and in consequence this flank was strong for defense in the morning.
The Confederate pickets and skirmishers encountered by the advanced line of Nelson
's division were those of Forrest
's cavalry regiment.
They gradually fell back in the direction of Hardee
's line, then being formed near and beyond McClernand
's old encampments, to the rear of which they retired soon afterwards, to take position on Hardee
's right flank.
's advancing line soon encountered Chalmers
's brigade and Moore
's regiment, added to which was an extemporized command, consisting of the 19th Alabama, of Jackson
's brigade; the 21st Alabama, of Gladden
's brigade; and, says General Chalmers
, in his report,1
the Crescent (Louisiana)
regiment; also a Tennessee regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel Venable
; and another Alabama
regiment (the 26th), under Lieutenant-Colonel Chadwick
, supported by batteries.
They not only checked Nelson
's force, but compelled it to fall back some distance, when, being supported by the advance of Crittenden
's division, it again resumed the offensive, at about eight o'clock A. M.; and Hazen
's brigade, on Nelson
's right, being now pushed forward with great gallantry, forced the Confederates
back, with the temporary loss of a battery.
They soon rallied, and, aided by their batteries and other small reinforcements which General Beauregard
very opportunely sent them, resumed the offensive at nine o'clock A. M., recovering their former position and their lost battery, inflicting a severe loss on Hazen
's brigade, and compelling that officer to call earnestly for aid. Meanwhile, Nelson
's left brigade, under Ammen
, was sorely pressed, and was in serious danger of being turned on its left.
This brigade [says Van Horne] fought gallantly to maintain a position second to none on the field, but at length began to give ground, and a decided advantage to the enemy seemed inevitable, as Nelson had neither artillery nor infantry to direct to his support, Hazen's brigade having been shattered, and Buell's being needed in its own position.
But the impending disaster was averted by Terrell's regular battery of McCook's division, which, having just arrived from Savannah, dashed into position, and, by its rapid and accurate firing, silenced the enemy's first battery, which was aiding the infantry force pressing Ammen.
Subsequently, the enemy repeated the attack, and endangered