where it does not properly belong. There may have been an object in that outlandish medley of musketry, artillery, shouts, cheers, commands, etc., etc., but not knowing the object, of course I can't properly gauge the success. Geary's struggle for Dug Gap was perhaps one of the stubbornest conflicts of the campaign, and certainly in boldness is surpassed by none. During the afternoon of to-day General Geary, with two brigades (Buschbeck's and Candy's), made an effort to carry one of the most rugged and scraggy heights along the Chattoogata range. Dug Gap is in what the citizens call John's Mountain. I learn from a deserter, who, by the way, was exceedingly intelligent, that the rebels regarded that gap as of great importance, and yet, from the impregnable character of the place, up to the time Geary suffered his first repulse, and until after that, the place was held by but one brigade (once the famous McNair's), now commanded by the rebel General Reynolds. The brigade consists of the First and Second Arkansas regiments and the Eighth Mississippi. It was feared that Geary would renew the assault, and Cleburne's brigade reinforced the enemy. Not possessed of the gift of ubiquity, I cannot be at every point along the line, the right and left of which are fourteen miles apart, and hence I was unable to witness what is pictured to me as one of the boldest and most pertinacious struggles for the numbers engaged during the war. The story of the ascent — how coolly they bared their breasts to the rebel volleys that swept the rugged steep — how long and gallantly they clung to the hazardous and almost hopeless effort to gain the top, and how at last the stalwart little band retired but to return again, and again to return unsuccessful — is only a repetition of what has occurred and been read of a hundred times since the war begun. I will not weary you with the details, but return to Buzzard Roost. This was the entertainment to which I was treated an hour or so before retiring to-night. Morgan, the common, unassuming, old farmer-warrior, was still fighting under the dark foliage of the mountain slope on Davis' left. Our artillerists are a set of tireless fellows who want no better fun than what they call “plugging the rebels,” and would, if they had ammunition enough, begin at the top of Rocky Face and shoot the whole mountain away in a very few days. The rebels from their cloud battery were plugging shells through what seemed a cloud in our direction until long into dark. Not a breeze was stirring. Camp fires blazed all through the valley, and as the mountain battery would discharge its missile a long bright sheet of sparks would shoot down the rocks as if some one had thrown out into the darkness a crucible of molton iron. There is poetry in war, but isn't it more enjoyable in a book on a sofa in a neat, cozy room? What do the drafted men say? Operations on the tenth. A heavy, beating rain fell to-day, and refused to even the sharpshooters an opportunity to spoil each other's physiognomies. Yesterday our pioneers and artillerists were busily employed in dragging artillery up the precipitous sides of the little hills at the entrance to the gap, for the purpose of silencing the enemy's guns on the points of the mountains on either hand. Just after daybreak an order embodying the news of General Grant's victories in the East was read to the troops, and then all through the numberless valleys and ravines echoed and reechoed the glad and hearty shouts of the joyous soldiery. The rebels swarmed on the very top of their parapets, and in sullen wonderment looked on, guessing what news, and no doubt cursing that any should come that would elicit a shout from the Yankees. Enemy opened out this morning more heavily than ever with artillery, evidently to learn where our newly planted batteries were. All the forenoon busily toiled the men, digging, tugging, hauling, and cutting, and just after noon displayed, much I apprehend to rebel chagrin, the number and calibre of our guns, and the superb manner in which they may be handled. Operations on the eleventh. Clouds were still sailing overhead portending another storm. All day the musketry rattles as before. The artillery now and then bellows and answers back. Misty, drizzling showers succeed each other, and through the fog the flame that shouts from the rebel mountain guns, glares fiercely over us. General Dodge, in command of all the troops of the Sixteenth army corps available in the present contingency, is ordered to pass through Snake Creek Gap, hurry forward to Resacca, and if possible cut the railroad and hold the works. General Sweeney, with the Second division, led the advance. From the moment the movement began, the enemy's skirmishers displayed a determination to oppose all the resistance possible against so superior a force, and succeeded in wounding numbers of good men during the advance. Colonel Phillips' Ninth Illinois mounted infantry was skirmishing in front. The Colonel's horse was killed under him, and he himself was too badly wounded to support himself in the saddle. Covered in front by a light force of cavalry the division continued to move toward Resacca. Passing the junction of the Dalton and Resacca roads the column was greeted, much to its surprise, with a shower of shell from a rebel battery on the ridge directly in front, afterwards occupied by batteries of the Fifteenth corps. The advance force consisted of the Sixty-sixth Illinois sharpshooters, the Eighty-first Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Bob Adams commanding.
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Table of Contents:
Doc . 16 . operations in Tennessee .
Doc . 19 . the siege of Suffolk, Virginia .
Doc . 36 . General Rousseau 's expedition.
Doc . 59 . battles of Spottsylvania , Va: battle of Sunday , May 8 , 1864 .
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