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[532] which had behaved so gallantly on the 31st, occupied a position in front of Grose's on the right bank. It crossed Stone River to join the latter, and they both fell upon the right flank of the Confederates, whose ranks had been broken by their too rapid success. This unexpected attack, at a moment when they were engaged in fighting Negley's troops and exchanging a sharp musketry-fire across the river, threw Breckenridge's soldiers into the utmost confusion. The fugitives from Beatty's division had not yet come to a halt when their adversaries were already in full retreat in an opposite direction, closely pursued by Grose and Hazen, and riddled by shells from fifty-eight guns, which Rosecrans had posted on the commanding points along the left bank. At this sight Negley's two brigades also crossed the river, anxious to participate in this retaliation, and to complete the rout of the Confederates. Before the close of the day the Federals had recaptured all the positions from which they had momentarily been dislodged; and if they had been more numerous, they might have pushed as far as Murfreesborough, so irreparable was the defeat of Breckenridge. In this fight of less than three-quarters of an hour the five Confederate brigades lost nearly fifteen hundred men and four guns; Hanson, one of their generals, was killed, and another, Adams, was wounded.

During the evening, part of McCook's corps, having recovered from the effects of its disaster of the 31st, came to take position on the reconquered heights; but the rain had softened the soil to such a degree that, on the morning of the 3d, Rosecrans deemed it impracticable to put his troops again on the march in order to complete the movement he had been contemplating for the last three days. He soon perceived, moreover, that this manoeuvre would be productive of no results; his persistency had discouraged the enemy, who, having given up all hopes of seeing him retire, and not daring to dislodge him, abandoned a position which was henceforth useless and dangerous to maintain.

This retreat, occurring immediately after Breckenridge's reverse, justified the Federals in regarding as a victory the sanguinary struggle we have just been describing. The greater the efforts of the Confederates, and the nearer they had been to achieving success, the more keenly this unlooked — for denouement was felt by

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