This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
 brigade of Davis is in enfiladed, and the men, able to escape only to the right, overrun the charging columns and tear it to pieces. General Lytle had barely fronted his brigade when he was struck by a bullet in the head. His third battle and his third wound! Struck at Carnifex Ferry and grievously hurt at Perryville, on both occasions he had requested those around to leave him, exclaiming that he was mortally hurt. Falling in the arms of one of his volunteer aids, he again begged to be abandoned. Not until the enemy had almost closed around him did the aid obey his desires, and then the General was apparently dead. Heaven grant that as at Perryville he may survive to the country. His brigade, their leader lost and without support on the right, fell back with the rest of Sheridan's Divisions, fighting the while. This was the story I gathered from some of Davis' retreating men, but I could find none of Sheridan's. The rebels cut our army in two, and Sheridan, isolated on the right, is captured bodily, was the only intelligence I could get concerning him. Gloomy enough! I never felt more certain of anything in my life than that Rosecrans' army was utterly lost. I could not understand why the firing on the left was unabated any more than I could understand why this vast column of retreating men was unmolested. A rumor came back to several of Rosecrans' staff that he had last been seen leading a charge. He was either missing or dead. I heard it, and thought involuntarily of the Libby Prison. Rosecrans, with some of his staff, had thrown himself under fire and endeavored to rally the ranks that had been scattered by the seemingly fatal attack on the left; but his heroic appeals were disregarded. Mortal courage could not have rallied the men on that field. Their ranks torn to pieces, their flanks passed at pleasure by the cunning enemy, they fled. But they fled as brave soldiers flee—without a panic. Reaching Missionary Ridge, six miles from Chattanooga, I found a line of infantry and cavalry drawn across the ridge to stop the retreating column. The men stopped without a word. No longer subjected to a hellish fire, they could reform at last, and they fell into line again, not only with alacrity, but with an appearance of relief. Meantime, the fighting still progressed on the left. The right of Thomas' line was ragged and uncertain, and the enemy was soon enveloping it. Thomas finding his right doubling back upon him, fell back just as his troops began to show symptoms of confusion. Taking a position on a strong ridge, he rallied and inspired his lines,
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.