No. 148. reports of Col. Moses B. Walker, Thirty-First Ohio Infantry, commanding First brigade.
Hdqrs. First Brig., Third Div., 14TH Army Corps, Utoy Creek, Ga., August 20, 1864.Major: Early on the morning of the 7th of May this brigade, then commanded by Brig. Gen. John B. Turchin, broke up camp at Ringgold, Ga., and after a hard day's march encamped near Tunnel Hill, Ga., throwing out a picket guard of one regiment, the Thirty-first Ohio Veteran Volunteer Infantry. On the 8th we marched to a position opposite Buzzard Roost Gap. On the 9th, 10th, and 11th the brigade remained in camp in line of battle. On the 12th marched through Snake Creek Gap to a position two miles east, and occupied works previously built by the Army of the Tennessee. On the 13th the brigade moved into position four miles from Resaca. On the morning of the 14th the brigade was moved to a position on the left of the division, connecting on its left with the right of the Army of the Ohio. Skirmishers were immediately thrown out, who engaged the enemy's skirmishers about 200 yards in advance of our line of battle, driving them back to the hills opposite our front, about three-fourths of a mile, the main line advancing at the same time, until the skirmishers had ascended the first line of hills. Here the firing on the skirmish line became brisk and well sustained, our line holding its position, but being unable to advance, owing to the superior strength of the enemy's line. This fact being reported by Capt. W. H Wade, the line was immediately doubled in strength and the enemy's skirmishers driven back to the second line of hills. General Turchin then gave orders to Col. M. B. Walker, Thirty-first Ohio Veteran Volunteer Infantry, to advance the front line of the brigade and occupy the first line of hills. This was immediately done, the second line moving at the same time, with the proper interval. Shortly after the brigade had arrived at the top of the hill it was observed that General Hascall's brigade, of General Judah's division, was moving in a double line of battle to the front, on a line of direction which brought it upon the rear of this brigade. Not understanding the nature of the movement, our lines stood fast until General Hascall's front line had passed our front line and his rear line our rear line. See map:
M. B. Walker, Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
[Maj. James A. Lowrie :]
Hdqrs. First Brig., Third DIv., 14TH Army Corps, Atlanta, Ga., September 8, 1864.Miajor: I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of my brigade from the 7th day of August to the 8th instant, inclusive: On the 7th of August the brigade remained in its old position on the hills southeast of Utoy Creek, holding our advanced lines on the left of the division, as well as the right, having four regiments, the Thirty-first, Eighty-ninth, and Ninety-second Ohio and Eightysecond Indiana on the left, and the Seventeenth Ohio and Twentythird Missouri on the right. On the 7th I pressed forward my line to a new position about 200 yards from the enemy's works; took up and fortified a line from which we held the enemy close within his lines, compelling him to keep his men constantly covered behind his works. About 100 men of the Eighty-second Indiana were sent forward to fight for this new position, whilst the main line was advanced and the position fortified. Almost one-fourth of this gallant little band (22) were killed or wounded during the day. Each of my other regiments, especially the Thirty-first and Seventeenth Ohio, suffered severely whilst we occupied this position. It was here the noble young Ruffner gave up his life for his country. Captains Stone and Barber, of the Thirty-first Ohio, were both wounded here, the latter  severely in the head. The enemy had laid a firm hold upon the Utoy Hills. On the — of August we challenged his right to hold them by a bold advance, and day after day and night after night, until the 11th, did we hold him in a deadly embrace. At 9 p. m. of the 11th we moved about three-fourths of a mile to the right and relieved a portion of General Morgan's division. This position we held until thenight oth e he nihh. Othe6t. he 19th, before daylight, moved out of our works on the Sandtown road about one-half mile and took up a position in readiness to support the troops on our right, if necessary; remained until night and returned to our works. On the 20th made a little movement as far as Wallace's place for a similar purpose; reported to Brevet Major-General Davis; relieved General Morgan's division, which went forward on a reconnaissance to the right as far as the Atlanta and Montgomery Railroad. At 5 p. m. we were relieved by General Davis, and returned to our works and reported to our division commander. From the 20th tothe night of the 26th we remained in our works, being constantly annoyed but not seriously hurt by the enemy's artillery and sharpshooters; occasionally a man was hit. During our stay upon the Utoy Hills we captured about 90 prisoners and received within our lines about the same number of deserters. At 1 a. m. on the morning of the 27th we quit our old works under a heavy fire from the enemy's artillery, and moved about one mile upon the Sandtown road. Here we halted and formed a line of battle, front to the rear, to cover the movement of our trains, General Morgan's division forming on our right. As the trains advanced we fell back, forming line of battle upon three successive positions to cover and protect our trains. The enemy made but a feeble advance, feeling our skirmish line very cautiously. Our line was handled very skillfully, but with boldness, by Captain Grosvenor, brigade inspector. The trains being safely guarded to a place of safety within our new lines, we moved as far as Wallace's house. At 5 p. m. we were ordered forward to report to General Davis; by his order advanced as far as the Widow Holbrook's place and camped for the night in a position to protect the trains then parked near Patterson's. On the 28th marched by a cross-road to Mount Gilead Church; remained with the teams until 10 a. in.; were then ordered by General Thomas to report to our division commander; marched with the division until near night, when we crossed the Atlanta and Montgomery Railroad; took up a position about three-fourths of a mile from Red Oak Station. Remained in position on the 29th. On the 30th marched at 6 a. m. by Shoal Creek Church; met the enemy's cavalry in small force and skirmished with it about one mile, to house, killing 1 and capturing 2 of the enemy ; took up a strong position; sent forward the Ninety-second Ohio for picket duty; received reports of the enemy moving in the direction of Jonesborough during the night, and sent the reports to General Baird. About daylight on the morning of the 31st I went out to the picket-line, then half a mile in advance of house. As soon as it became light I saw the enemy's trains moving in the direction of .Rough and Ready on the Jonesborough road; reported the same to General Baird, who ordered Captain Morgan, Seventh Indiana Battery, to report to me with his battery, which I advanced to the skirmish line, supporting it with my entire brigade; placed the battery in a commanding position; it opened fire upon the enemy's trains, causing much disorder amongst the wagons and driving them from the main road. About 7 a. m. I was visited by Major-General Sherman and Brigadier-General Baird, who ordered me to send one or two  good regiments to the front to reconnoiter the [ground] or detect the position of the enemy; sent the Ninety-second Ohio, Colonel Fearing, supported by the Seventeenth Ohio, Colonel Ward, with instructions to go boldly forward at least as far as the Flint River, unless met by an overwhelming force, in which case I would bring forward my entire brigade. These gallant commanders executed my orders with promptness, and in about one hour's time reported that they had gained the opposite bank of the stream, and were repairing a bridge which had been burned by the enemy, and that in one hour's time the artillery and trains could be crossed over. In the mean time our Third Brigade and Colonel Mitchell's brigade, of General Carlin's division, had moved forward, and General Baird, commanding in person, with my brigade in advance, followed by Este's and Mitchell's brigades, moved rapidly on as far as the Rough and Ready and Jonesborough road, meeting with no resistance from the enemy. The three brigades were placed in line of battle and our position was fortified to command the road. The Atlanta and Macon Railroad now being about two and a half miles to the front, and General Baird being desirous to get his troops on it as soon as possible, ordered me to send out a force of one regiment, to be supported by a like force from Este's brigade, with instructions to push forward, if possible, to the railroad and cut it. I sent the Eighty-ninth Ohio, commanded by Colonel Carlton. This regiment being very small, I allowed Captain Grosvenor, at his earnest request, to go forward upon its left flank with 100 picked men from the Seventeenth Ohio, under Captains Noles and Inskeep. Captain Grosvenor's command and Colonel Carlton's skirmishers appear to have vied with each other in gallantry, and from all the facts I can learn reached the railroad about the same time and commenced the work of destroying it. Colonel Este had sent forward the Seventy-. fifth Indiana, which I am told gallantly co-operated with Colonel Carlton in driving back the enemy's cavalry and taking position on the railroad. About night Colonel Carlton, finding that the enemy was bringing forward a considerable force of cavalry against him, deemed it prudent to withdraw his command a short distance from the railroad, and reported the same to me. I had been very uneasy lest he should be overpowered by numbers, and on learning his condition I obtained permission of General Baird and sent the Eighty-second Indiana and Thirty-first Ohio, under command of Colonel Hunter, to his support. Colonel Hunter now being the ranking officer, assumed command of the entire force, marched upon the railroad, driving back the enemy's cavalry, took up a position, fortified it, and, during the night and succeeding morning, destroyed about one mile of the railroad. I think great praise is due to all the officers and men engaged in this most successful effort to reach and cut the railroad. I would not assert it positively, but from all the facts I have learned Carlton and Grosvenor led the first of our troops who cut the railroad. During the day and night my brigade captured 43 prisoners from the enemy. Captains Curtis and Whedon, of my staff, took a very active and honorable part in the operations of the day and night, rendering Colonel Hunter the most efficient assistance. On the morning of the 1st, by direction of General Baird, I withdrew my troops from the railroad. At 12 m. marched with the other brigades on the Jonesborough road, having detached the Thirty-first Ohio to guard the trains at --Creek; passed the Second Brigade and formed a line of battle; was soon ordered to move to the front, our troops now having engaged the enemy and a brisk fight going  on about one mile north of Jonesborough. On coming up I found Moore's brigade, of Carlin's division, and Este's, of ours, about ready to assault the enemy's works; received orders to support their lines; formed my brigade at a double-quick. The assault having commenced, I received an order from General Baird, through Major Connolly, to move farther to the right and support Este if necessary; moved rapidly up within about 150 yards of Este's line and ordered my men to cheer the gallant fellows who were then driving the enemy from his works. This they did with a will, knowing that their old comrades, with whom they had stood side by side at Perryville, Stone's River, Hoover's Gap, Chickamauga, and Mission Ridge, and all through the great campaign, were in the deadly breach. But it was soon over. The work was done and the Third Brigade immortalized, and but 12 of my brave men had won the renown of being struck in this most brilliant affair. The enemy's works being carried, I relieved Colonel Este's brigade with my front line, and assisted in carrying off his killed and wounded-alas! too many of whom we found upon that bloody field. Groping my way in the darkness to those bloody trenches, stumbling at almost every step over the dead and dying as I placed fresh lines of men in them, in the midst of other thoughts I shuddered that such was the work of my countrymen. At midnight, and for an hour later, the air was rent by the explosion of ammunition at Atlanta. At 10 a. m. of the 2d I was ordered to advance toward the town. The enemy had retreated, leaving us to bury their dead and care for their badly wounded. Formed a new line, facing diagonally to the rear; at night took up a new position north of east and about one mile from the town of Jonesborough. On the morning of the 3d discovered five of the enemy's field hospitals in which were yet remaining over 300 badly wounded men, several surgeons and hospital attendants, and one chaplain. On the 3d, 4th, and 5th remained in camp sending out small foraging parties, who took in all about 25 prisoners. At 12 m. on the 6th marched to a position about one-half mile from the battleground. On the 7th, acting as the rear guard, marched to a position one and a half miles from Rough and Ready and encamped for the night. At 4 a. m. on the morning of the 8th took charge of the trains and marched to our present position. The health and spirits of the brigade are good. We claim only to have borne an honorable part in the great campaign. I herewith forward a complete list of casualties,3 together with reports of regimental commanders, some of which, I regret to say, are not prepared with as much care as they deserve, but as I wish to apologize for the same deficiency in my own, I ask a like favor to be shown them. Our hearts are all too full of the happy results of our labors, perils, and privations to admit the work of detail or finish. My thanks are due in some measure to every officer under me. I might report the same in this of those who are personally mentioned in my former report. They have added to their deserts by their good conduct throughout the campaign, but words avail but little and I have nothing but good words to bestow, yet I will ever be their witness before the world that they have done their duty.
M. B. Walker, Colonel, Commanding Brigade.
Maj. James A. Lowrie, Asst. Adjt. Gen., Third Division, 14th Army Corps.