If the enemy had concerted his attacks from front, flank, and rear, so as to strike my line at the same moment with his different lines of battle, it would have been extremely difficult, if not impossible to hold our ground, but this was not done, and as his first assault fell upon our rear, both divisions took the opposite of the breastworks. . . . The attack was renewed from the same direction upon Leggett's division. . . . This was followed by an attack upon Smith's division, which came upon his flank and rear as his troops stood on the reverse side of their works, with their backs to the city of Atlanta. Both brigades of this division were immediately formed to meet this attack, at right angles with our works, facing to the southwest, in the open field. . .. The third attack made upon Leggett came from the direction of Atlanta. A skirmish line, followed by a heavy force, advanced from that direction with great impetuosity. The division changed front and got on the east side of the breastworks, . . . repulsing the enemy who rallied, reformed their lines, and returned to the charge, but were again repulsed... About four o'clock in the evening the enemy renewed their attack upon the division from the east side of the works, on what was originally our rear. The men again jumped over the breastworks and received the assault. This attack is described by General Smith and his officers as the most fierce and persistent made upon them during the day. The enemy approached under cover of the woods to within less than
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