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[483] of the sharp-shooters, which brought them right on us, Major Smith and Lieutenants Beckham and Easterling charged them with companies ‘B’ and ‘G,’ and after a close fight drove them entirely out of our works; meanwhile, Major Whitely brought up his battalion and reoccupied his position on the railroad cut. Companies ‘B,’ ‘G’ and ‘K’ now resumed their place in line and the firing lulled, the enemy in my front retiring to the bottom of the hill.

While we were fighting on the left Lieutenant-Colonel Jones directed the firing of the centre and right of the 24th, and repulsed every assault of the enemy.

It is to be noted that the assault did not reach the two regiments to the right of mine, and that the heaviest attack was on my left, and at the railroad. The firing of the enemy, for the most part, was wild and entirely over us. I attributed this to the confusion in his advance and attack, caused by our abatis; for there was no lack of spirit in his assault. Our small loss in killed is attributed to this wild firing on the enemy's part.

From our prisoners we learned that the troops assaulting us belonged to General Jeff. Davis's division. I have counted over 200 graves in our front, most of them marked. The battle began about 4 1/2 P. M. and lasted until dark. At midnight the Lieutenant-General in person, with his staff, rode up to our position, and did me the honor to return his thanks for our conduct, and gave directions for our retirement. In a half hour after, by the order of the Colonel commanding the brigade, the 24th marched out from our position, and in advance of the brigade reached Lovejoy by daylight and went to work at once on the new line formed there.

In the action at Jonesboro the regiment sustained an irreparable loss in the death of Major D. F. Hill. He fell while endeavoring to arrest the retirement of the sharp-shooters on my left, shot through the heart by one of the enemy behind our works. A cool, brave man and a good soldier, Major Hill's loss is deplored by every man and officer of his regiment.

I beg to note especially the gallant conduct of Major B. B. Smith, Assistant Adjutant General; of my Adjutant, Lieutenant Holmes, and of Lieutenants Easterling and Beckham and Seigler, who gave me every assistance, and in the most handsome manner rallied and led the men in our hard fight to retake the position we at first lost.

With the greatest satisfaction I report the conduct of the officers


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B. B. Smith (2)
D. F. Hill (2)
Easterling (2)
R. F. Beckham (2)
Whitely (1)
Seigler (1)
Lovejoy (1)
J. William Jones (1)
Holmes (1)
Jefferson Davis (1)
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