No. 117. report of Col. Josiah given, Seventy-fourth Ohio Infantry, of operations M]iay 7-July 5 and August 16-September 5.
Hdqrs. Seventy-Fourth Regt. Ohio Vet. Infantry, Jonesborough, Ga., September 5, 1864.Sir: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by the Seventy-fourth Regiment Ohio Veteran Volunteer Infantry while under my command in the recent campaign in Northern Georgia: The regiment marched with the army from Ringgold on the 7th day of May, numbering 25 commissioned officers and 290 enlisted men for duty. The regiment was first brought into action on the evening of the 9th of May, when the brigade was advanced against the enemy, strongly posted on the mountain on the right of the railroad at Buzzard Roost. The regiment being on the extreme left of the brigade line advanced directly into the range of the enemy's artillery on the mountain, and from which we suffered severely. Adjt. Mathew H. Peters was severely wounded while assisting me in holding the ranks in order. (For other casualties at this and other points see accompanying list. 1) The line was at once withdrawn from this hazardous position to one of more safety. The regiment remained with the brigade on that line until the evening of the 11th, when the brigade was relieved. We next became engaged on the line near Resaca on the evening of the 14th of May, the regiment having been placed in position on the front line, which position we fortified during the night of the 14th. We remained in that position all the day and night of the 15th, exchanging shots with the enemy posted  behind the works within easy rifle range. During the night of the 15th the enemy made a spirited charge on our lines. The skirmishers, under command of Lieut. Thomas Kirby, posted in front of the Seventy-fourth, deserve special praise for the handsome manner in which they met the charge and drove the enemy to his works again. The regiment was next engaged on the 27th of May on Pumpkin Vine Creek, where it was advanced with the brigade to a position on the extreme left of the army and in the second line of the brigade. The regiment did not become engaged until in the night, though subjected to a severe fire of artillery and musketry during several hours. About 10 o'clock at night the enemy renewed his attack with great violence, causing the brigade on our right to fall back. I received orders from Colonel Scribner, commanding the brigade, to deploy a company as skirmishers over the ground vacated by the other brigade, so as to prevent the enemy from surprising our right. This I did by deploying Company A, Capt. John W. McMillen, they taking and holding their position, despite the spirited fire of the enemy, until the brigade was safely withdrawn within t.he works that had been constructed in the rear during the evening. On the morning of the 28th I was ordered to report with my regiment to Brigadier-General Carlin, commanding First Brigade, which I did, and was assigned to a position in reserve, where we remained until the 2d of June without being engaged, but all the time subject to scattering shots and shell from the enemy. On the evening of the 2d of June I received orders from Colonel Scribner to relieve the Seventy-eighth Pennsylvania Volunteers, posted on the front line, which we did, and held that position under constant fire until the morning of the 5th of June, when the enemy evacuated. The regiment participated in the continual skirmishing that attended the advance of the brigade to its position at Kenesaw Mountain. On the 18th of June we were subject to a severe artillery fire during the attack on the enemy's first line of works. On the night of the 20th of June we were placed into position behind partially constructed works immediately to the right of Kenesaw Mountain. These works the men completed under the direction of line officers during the night, though harassed by a continual fire of musketry from the enemy's lines. During the afternoon of the 21st our position was subjected to the most terrific cannonading I have ever witnessed, and which lasted without interruption for over an hour, and yet, strange to say, not a man was struck. I attribute this fact to the skillful manner in which the works were built, and the prudence of the men in keeping within the works. On the night of the 22d we moved with the brigade to a position in the line farther to the right, where my regiment was posted in the second line and remained there until after the evacuation by the enemy on the 3d day of July. In this position we were again subject to an artillery fire that at times was furious. On the 4th of July we were posted in reserve to the Second Brigade during its engagement with the ebomy on that day on the Marietta and Atlanta road. July 5, I took command of the brigade, Colonel Scribner being excused from duty on account of a severe illness. The command of the regiment devolved upon Maj. Joseph Fisher from that day until the 16th of August, when I resumed command. The regiment was then posted in the works with the brigade before Atlanta, and remained  there until the evening of the 25th of August, participating in the continual skirmishing carried on with the enemy. The regiment was next engaged on the 1st day of September near Jonesborough. I received orders from Colonel Moore, commanding brigade, to advance with my regiment, in connection with the Sixty-ninth Ohio Volunteers and Sixteenth U. S. Infantry, against the enemy, seen to be posted behind temporary works of rails in the edge of the woods on the opposite hill-side across Chambers' Mill creek. The advance was made across open fields and under the enemy's fire of musketry and artillery, by passing the line rapidly from one position to the next that might offer advantage. After making the second halt the enemy's reserves were seen to be retreating, when I ordered the line forward to the works. Had it not been for the marshy character of the ground over which the lines had to pass, and the delay caused by crossing Mill Creek, we would have captured some of the enemy and possibly his artillery. A caisson and its contents, which they upset in the flight, was the only capture of the charge. The enemy having retreated to the woods on our right, and our right being exposed, I deployed Company G, Lieut. George W. Bricker, and Company B, Lieut. P. A. Weaver. These officers deployed their companies and made a dashing advance to the crest of the hill under a severe fire. The right being still exposed, Major Locher, Seventyninth Pennsylvania Volunteers, at my request sent out a company, by the assistance of which the enemy were driven. Lieutenants Bricker and Weaver deserve special mention for their conduct on this occasion. The enemy having rapidly retreated before our skirmishers, the line was halted and. rejoined the brigade. The brigade having advanced to the Macon railroad, near McPeak's house, the lines were reformed, the Seventy-fourth taking position in the center of the first line. The lines were then advanced through the woods to the north boundary of Johnston's farm, where they were halted in position, the skirmishers being closely engaged in our front. I received an order from Colonel Moore to advance to the first line, but before I could communicate the order to my own or the other regiments of the line, the First Wisconsin Volunteers, from the second line, passed through the line of my regiment to the front, and was joined on the right and left by the other two regiments of the first line, thus forming a complete line with the place of my regiment in the line filled up. The first line being halted at the crest of the hill in front, I discovered that the First Wisconsin continued to move forward, leaving the position of the Seventy-fourth vacant, and thereupon I moved the regiment forward to its place and joined flanks with the Sixty-ninth Ohio, on my right, but found that the Twenty-first Ohio had continued to move forward with the First Wisconsin and halted in the face of the woods next in front. Hearing through a staff officer that the First Wisconsin, which had been heavily engaged, was getting short of ammunition and desired relief, I asked Captain Hicks, commanding Sixty-ninth Ohio, to relieve them, they being posted directly in his front. Captain Hicks promptly moved his regiment forward for that purpose. I then moved the Seventy-fourth forward to the face of the woods and received orders from Colonel Moore to form the first line and move forward as far as we could. i reformed the line with the Seventyfourth Ohio on the right, the Twenty first Ohio on the left, and Sixty-ninth Ohio in the center. When about to advance with the  line I discovered that there were no skirmishers in front, which fact I reported to Colonel Moore, and received his order to move forward at once, which I did. An advance of a few rods in the dense brush disclosed the enemy posted in intrenchments, with their front covered by fallen timber, while the position furnished no protection or advantage to our men but what the thick growth of small bushes afforded. Soon after our occupation of this position the line to the right of the Seventy-fourth fell back, leaving our flank exposed to a severe flank fire, which ultimately caused the Seventy-fourth to fall back to the face of the woods, and to which position the other reginents also retired. I reported these facts to Colonel Moore and received his order to again advance the line and drive the enemy out of his works. The line again advanced, the Sixty-ninth Ohio on the right, Twenty-first Ohio on the left, and Seventy-fourth Ohio in the center. The enemy's works were manfully charged and taken after a most obstinate struggle, the works being divided by traverses at every twenty or thirty feet. Each section had to be fought for separately, and by thus following the line of works toward the left, our lines were brought under the range of the enemy's artillery in the opening at the railroad, where a most destructive fire of shot and shell was brought to bear upon our ranks and caused them to again fall back to the face of the woods. When the artillery first opened on us I reported the situation to General Carlin, commanding division, having met with him when looking for Colonel Moore. Receiving no orders, I allowed my command to remain until it was driven back by the force of the enemy's fire. A number of prisoners were taken at the time our line took the enemy's works, and they were started to the rear, expecting the second line to take charge of them, but owing to the severe fire in our front and the comparative quietness on our right, they passed out to the right and fell into the hands of other brigades. I have no means of arriving at the number of prisoners taken. Night having set in I was ordered to strengthen the works in our front and hold our position until morning. In conclusion of this hasty and imperfect report, it affords me great pleasure to bear witness to the commendable patience with which both officers and men have borne the hardships and privations of the campaign, and the true soldierly bravery with which they have faced every danger. We mourn the loss of many good and brave men during the campaign and particularly in the last action. Among the latter number is Lieut. John Scott, Company B, who fell dead at the head of his company and close on the enemy's works. In his death the regiment has lost a most fitting example as a true Christian and brave soldier. The 18 killed and 88 wounded in the regiment during the entire campaign tells more plainly than I can the spirit with which the regiment has met and faced the dangers of the past four months. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Josiah given, Colonel Seventy-fourth Regiment Ohio Infantry. Lieut. H. O. Montague
, Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., 3d Brig., 1st Div., 14th Army Corps.
, Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., 3d Brig., 1st Div., 14th Army Corps.