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[253] heavily during the campaign, having lost five of its members since the movement against Dallas.

The Thirty-third New Jersey, which was advanced to fortify a hill on the skirmish line, lost more than half its number on the first onset. General Geary was on the hill with it when attacked, and had barely time to reach his main column.

Attack on General Williams.

The rebel attack rolled along the left until General Williams' fine division was fully engaged. It had advanced to close up on Geary, General Knipe's brigades in the centre, General Ruger's on the right, and Colonel Robinson's on the left. It fought from four o'clock till long after dark, in a dense forest, without yielding a foot. It was a fair stand up fight, in which Williams' division lost more heavily than any other in the engagement. When they first advanced against Colonel Robinson's brigade, the rebels held up their hands as if to surrender, upon which, seeing our lads hesitate, they instantly poured a volley into them. These wretched and cowardly tactics were practised on other portions of the line.

The brigade of Colonel Ansel McCook, on Palmer's left, was at one time heavily engaged, the One Hundred and Fourth and Tenth Wisconsin losing about fifty men each. The remainder of Palmer's corps was not engaged, and so rapid and conclusive was the fighting that it was not needed to assist Hooker or Newton.

It is estimated that every man in Hooker's corps expended over a hundred rounds of ammunition. At the beginning of the fight the ammunition trains were on the north bank of the creek, but they were rushed over before the troops had generally emptied their boxes.

The enemy retired a mile or more during the night, falling back to his works around Atlanta. Hood's inaugural was not very felicitous. The battle of Peach-tree creek must rank with the most brilliant successes of the war. The failure of the rebels to destroy our right wing was owing to the indominable pluck of the men. They couldn't afford to be whipped, and such being the case, General Hood was unhappy in supposing that he could worst ten thousand of our lads with his whole army, even after (to borrow a phrase from the Confederate classics), “getting them just where he wanted them.”

An officer's account.

four and A quarter miles North of Atlanta, Georgia, July 21.
On yesterday occurred one of the most sanguinary and brilliant conflicts which have befallen this army upon the soil of Georgia. I shall endeavor to write an account of that portion of it engaged in by the First division of the Twentieth corps, and I trust the same may not be unacceptable to your readers.

On the nineteenth instant the army of the Cumberland arrived in position south of the Chattahoochee, and north of Atlanta. The Fourteenth corps occupied the right wing, the Fourth the left, and the Twentieth the centre. The line extended along the north bank of Peach-tree creek, and in a direction perpendicular to the line of rebel works bordering the Chattahoochee. The position thus adopted compelled the enemy to change his front and assume a new line of defence. In the mean time the armies of the Tennessee and the Ohio were expected to shortly sever the Georgia railroad near Stone Mountain, and to march toward Atlanta in a direction threatening the right flank and rear of the rebel army.

On the twentieth instant a general advance in the direction of Atlanta was begun. By ten o'clock A. M. the Twentieth corps had arrived in position on the heights skirting Peach-tree creek on its south bank. The First division joined the Fourteenth corps on the right, the Second division held the centre, and the Third joined Newton's division of the Fourth corps on the extreme left. A heavy picket was thrown out, and was considered a sufficient precaution against any hostile demonstration of the enemy, since nothing was thought of but an advance against his position. The troops were permitted to rest quietly in the shade, and were not troubled with building the usual breastworks deemed necessary at each change of the line of battle. Temporary barricades of rails were thought a sufficient strengthening of the line for all necessary purposes.

Thus the day wore away until two o'clock P. M. Comparatively little firing had followed the movements of the troops — just enough to reveal the presence and position of the enemy. The developments anxiously hoped — for in the movements of McPherson and Schofield seemed to be awaited as the signal for active demonstrations by the Army of the Cumberland. But. the enemy, appreciating the desperate condition to which he was being rapidly brought, bethought himself to make one bold, dashing, determined effort to thwart our designs. Accordingly, early in the afternoon a fierce, rapid fire broke out along our picket lines, which quickly grew into a volleying roll of musketry in front of Ward's and Geary's divisions. The storm soon extended along the line toward the right where Williams' division lay grouped along the crest of a rather high and densely--??wooded hill. Between Williams' and Geary's divisions lay a deep hollow, down which, masked by the timber, the enemy was now advancing in heavy masses. General Williams, with that sudden inspiration which characterizes true military genius, saw at a glance the arrangement of his troops which, according to the nature of the ground and the unexpected exigencies of the moment, was best adapted

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