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No. 19. report of Brig. Gen. Walter C. Whitaker, U. S. Army, commanding Second brigade, of operations May 3-June 30.

Hdqrs. Second Brig., First Div., 4TH Army Corps,
Atlanta, Ga., --, 1864.

Sir: I submit the following report of the part taken by my brigade in the advance upon Atlanta; also a list of the killed, wounded, and missing:

May the 3d the brigade-composed of the following regiments, Twenty-first Kentucky, Colonel Price; Ninety-sixth Illinois, Colonel Champion; Fortieth Ohio, Colonel Taylor; One hundred and fifteenth Illinois, Colonel Moore; Fifty-first Ohio, Colonel Mc-Clain; Ninety-ninth Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Cummins commanding; Eighty-fourth Indiana, Col. A. J. Neff, and Thirty-fifth Indiana. Major Dufficy commanding, and the Fifth Indiana Battery, Lieut. A. Morrison commanding, numbering 155 commissioned officers and 2,875 enlisted men, making a total of 3,028-left Blue Springs, near Cleveland, Tenn., en route for Atlanta, Ga. On the evening of the 4th we reached Catoosa Springs, where we remained until the 7th, on which day we advanced on Tunnel Hill, the First Brigade of the division having the advance; it meeting with opposition near Tunnel Hill, my brigade was detailed to act on the left next to Rocky Face. The Twenty-first Kentucky was deployed as skirmishers, supported by the brigade, formed in two lines. We drove the enemy, composed of Wheeler's cavalry, rapidly before us. The enemy formed on Tunnel Hill, but we continuing to advance, they rapidly retired, leaving us in possession of the works on the hill, which were of good strength, and whence a formidable resistance could have been made. On the 8th took position in front of Rocky Face and remained during the night. On the 9th deployed the Ninety-sixth Illinois and Eighty-fourth Indiana as skirmishers, who boldly advanced up the side of the mountain to the base of the cliff of Rocky Face, where the skirmishers effectively kept the enemy's skirmishers under cover on the top of the ridge. In the evening, by order, the Ninety-sixth Illinois and Eighty-fourth Indiana were marched by the right flank as skirmishers in the direction of Buzzard Roost Gap to develop the enemy's position. Under a heavy fire of musketry, shell, and canister this was most ably done, until they approached so near the enemy's batteries that their artillery could not be depressed enough to bear on the skirmishers. The enemy was found in heavy force. By night the skirmishers were retired from the immediate front of the [241] enemy's works, which were of the most formidable character, having accomplished their mission. In this advance I deeply regret to mention the loss of Major Boyd, of the Eighty-fourth Indiana. He was severely wounded and has since died. Brave, quick, energetic, and honorable, he was a most useful and valuable officer. His loss was deeply felt. We remained in front of Rocky Face, engaged in skirmishing every day, until the 12th, when this brigade was moved to the right of the railroad, where it passes through Rocky Face Ridge. Here we intrenched, working night and day, in face of a most energetic and watchful foe, under heavy fire, and firmly maintained our position in pistol-shot range of the enemy's works until they evacuated them. They were of the most formidable character.

On the 13th we pursued the rebels, and on the 14th, the First Brigade having the advance, they were found on the road from Dalton to Resaca, near the latter place. My brigade was sent forward to develop their position. Throwing out skirmishers, we advanced and drove the enemy before us until they took refuge behind their intrenchments. We continued to advance until within canister range of their works. Here my brigade threw up a temporary barricade, where my sharpshooters kept up a galling fire on the enemy's batteries. While thus engaged the rebels made an assault in four columns on the left of our column. The First Brigade of the division had been ordered to protect this flank, but the enemy massed his troops in such numbers, and made his assault so fiercely, that the First Brigade was overpowered and fell back in great disorder, leaving my left flank exposed to a most terriffic assault. The One hundred and fifteenth Illinois and Ninety-sixth Illinois resisted with persistent courage under a most galling fire, but held the enemy at bay, falling back and changing front, until I brought up the Fortieth Ohio, Ninety-ninth Ohio, and Fifty-first Ohio, when we drove the enemy back from my flank and firmly maintained my position. These regiments behaved with great gallantry. The Fifth Indiana Battery, attached to this brigade, under command of Lieutenant Morrison, and under supervision of brave Captain Simonson, chief of artillery of the division, had been left in the rear by order of major-general commanding division, and being assailed by a portion of the enemy's columns, made a most determined and successful defense. The brave officers and men hurled such storms of shell, shot, and canister upon the rebel lines that they were enabled to maintain their position until General Hooker's command, advancing, aided them in turning back the rebel column, which was advancing far in rear of our left flank. I make special mention of the officers and men of this battery for their gallantry and bravery on this occasion. The enemy's loss was reported by prisoners to be near 300 killed, with some 600 or 800 wounded. My loss was light.

May the 15th my brigade was massed in column of regiments to support a portion of General Hooker's corps that assaulted and carried a part of the enemy's works in front of Resaca. At night we lay in the trenches which my pioneers had been engaged in constructing under heavy fire.

Early next morning, the 16th, the enemy's works were found to be evacuated. We slowly pursued them, and, passing through Resaca, crossed the Oostenaula late in the evening. The One hundred and fifteenth Illinois, Colonel Moore commanding, was detailed, by order of General Thomas, to guard the works at Resaca. [242] It was a very responsible position, and it has been well done. May 17, we moved slowly in the direction of and within three miles of Adairsville, the enemy slowly and stubbornly yielding. May 18, advanced through Adairsville and within three and one-half miles of Kingston. May 19, my brigade was in advance of the army, the Twenty-first Kentucky on the right of the Ninety-ninth Ohio, on the left of the road as skirmishers, with the Eighty-fourth and Thirty-fifth Indiana as flankers. We had heavy skirmishing all the way to Kingston. Beyond the town the enemy formed in line of battle and opened upon us with a battery. I moved my brigade quickly against the enemy's left, while they were assailed in front by the First and Third Brigades of this division. Being thus assailed, the rebels retreated slowly and stubbornly, falling back and being firmly pursued by my skirmishers through a succession of thickly-wooded hills very favorable for defense, until coming to the slope of the ridge the rebels were found drawn up in line of battle in heavy force on an open plateau a short distance in our front and in front of their works at Cassville. By order of General Stanley I threw forward my brigade in line of battle, and the Fifth Indiana Battery, with McDowell's and Bridges' batteries, or portions of them, opened fire upon the rebels with good effect. Our line of battle being formed and the skirmishers pressing them, the enemy withdrew his forces and retired behind his works at Cassville. During the night they evacuated this position.

The 20th, 21st, and 22d we remained in position near Cassville, and on the 22d sent back to Bridgeport, Ala., all the surplus baggage of the brigade. On the 23d we crossed the Etowah and camped near Euharlee. On the 24th we passed Euharlee Creek and went into camp late at night in heavy rain at Burnt Hickory. On the 25th we continued in pursuit of the enemy, and passing Pumpkin Vine Creek were ordered to support General Hooker's corps, which had come up with and had a severe engagement with the rebels. These re-enforcements did not arrive any too soon, though night had intervened between the enemy and General Hooker's disordered troops. We went into line of battle at night and lay in this position. May 26, remained in this position. May 27, moved across Little Pumpkin Vine Creek near Brown's saw-mill, relieving the Second Brigade, of General Wood's division.

At this point we remained until the 5th of June, working day and night, in rain and mud, under heavy fire. Severe skirmishing took place night and day with but little intermission, varied every day by heavy artillery firing. This position was most fiercely contested, yet day and night my officers and men for ten days worked and fought until we advanced our lines to pistol-shot range at some points of the enemy's works. Here the fire was so heavy and concentrated that no human being could show above the works for any length of time without being shot. The enemy was so hotly pressed that on the morning of the 5th his works were again found vacated. June the 6th we pursued them, and took position about three miles south of Acworth. Here we remained until the 10th June, on which day we advanced skirmishingn) and found the enemy strongly intrenched on Pine Mountain, with his left toward Lost and his right toward Kenesaw Mountain. June 11, took position on the left of Hooker and the right of Wood's division, and threw up earth-works with lumber revetments for artillery and riflemen. Keeping a heavy line of skirmishers forward, the enemy opened from Pine Mountain with artillery. [243]

Remained in this position, with severe skirmishing, the 12th, 13th, and 14th of June. On the 14th a shell from the Fifth Indiana Battery, commanded by Lieutenant Morrison, fired from a 3-inch Rodman gun, from the section commanded by Lieutenant Ellison, killed Lieutenant-General Polk of the rebel army, who, in company with Generals Johnston and Hardee, was surveying our lines from Pine Mountain. June 15, the rebels vacated Pine Mountain and its strong defenses. We advanced in pursuit and occupied Pine Mountain. We found the enemy in another line of works in cannon-range of his last position. In this advance I suffered the loss of that good and brave officer, Lieut. Thomas M. Gunn, topographical engineer of the brigade, who was captured by the enemy while fearlessly in the discharge of his duty. We remained before the enemy, with heavy skirmishing, until the 17th, when the rebels fell back on their left, falling back so as to form a line almost at right angles with that part of his position not abandoned. We pursued him and went into line with the Second Brigade, of Wood's division, on our left and Williams' division on our right. Heavy works were again thrown up for defense. June 18, advanced, my skirmishers being the Ninety-ninth Ohio, under command of Captain Bope (both field officers being sick). This regiment advanced most gallantly, driving the enemy with great impetuosity, and taking position within 100 yards of the enemy's lines. It rained incessantly, and these brave men in their rifle-pits, some in water nearly waist deep, resisted suc. cessfully every effort made to dislodge them. Following up the advance made by the Ninety-ninth Ohio, with the Eighty-fourth and Thirty-fifth Indiana and Fifty-first Ohio, we again threw up works and held the advance gained. The skirmishing was very severe. June 19, the rebels, being hard pressed, had again vacated their position and left their formidable works. We pursued along the road to Marietta. Between two and three miles the enemy were again found in force in strong earth-works. This brigade went into line with heavy skirmishing, the right of my skirmishers having to wade and stand in a swamp with the water above the knees. June 20, advanced my front line and again threw up strong works; the: enemy's position was such that he could enfilade as far as the range of his guns our lines, right and left. I was ordered to dislodge him. My skirmishers, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Watson, were strengthened and advanced. The Twenty-first Kentucky, Colonel Price commanding, was ordered to storm the first line of works. The Fifty-first Ohio, Colonel McClain, was ordered to support, while the pioneers of the brigade were held in readiness to fortify immediately any vantage ground taken. The skirmishers having advanced, at 4 p. m. the assault was made. It was one of the most brilliant and successful assaults of the war. So rapidly and effectively was it done that the great bulk of the rebels occupying the works were killed or taken prisoners. The officers and men of the Twenty-first charged beyond this line, and up to within a few yards of their main lines. The color-sergeant, Henry Bryant, being wounded, Sergt. William L. Lanham seized the colors, and bearing them forward was in the act of mounting the parapet of the enemy's main works when he was fatally shot. The brave men with him brought back their colors to the first line of works, where they firmly maintained themselves until the Fifty-first Ohio and the pioneers [arrived], making the works more tenable. They were relieved from their position by the Ninety-ninth Ohio, which formed [244] on the left of the Fifty-first. The Ninety-sixth Illinois was formed on my extreme right, and the Thirty-fifth Indiana on my extreme left, the Fortieth Ohio, Eighty-fourth Indiana, and Twenty-first Kentucky now forming the rear line. This disposition of forces was made with great celerity, but none too soon to secure the important position taken from the rebels. Two rebel regiments were sent to recover the lost ground. They boldly advanced to within a few rods of my line and were mowed down by the deadly fire of my brave men. The contest was again renewed with additional forces by the enemy to regain their lost ground. Boldly they advanced, but as boldly were they repulsed. Three brigades from night-falltill 11 o'clock at night made desperate and persevering assaults to recover the lost position. Five companies on the right of the Thirty-fifth Indiana were driven by superior numbers from their position, and the enemy gained a iodgment in my line. 'Twas dark. Friend and foe were mixed. Brave Major Dufficy fell boldly and fearlessly rallying his men. Colonel Cummins, with the Ninety-ninth Ohio, repelled from his left flank, while the Fifty-first Ohio and Ninety-sixth Illinois drove them from their front. It was a time of peril and great danger, but ordering forward the Fortieth Ohio, those bold soldiers soon drove out the rebels from their lodgment on my line in wild disorder and with heavy loss. It was a most fiercely and deadly contested battleground. In two instances coming under my observation the bayonets of the loyal and rebel soldiers were found in each other's person. My loss was 273 killed, wounded, and missing. The enemy's loss was reported to me by prisoners to be between 500 and 600 killed and over 1,000 wounded. We fought their best troops and drove them from an important position, and held it firmly. Among the missing is Lieutenant-Colonel Watson, of the Fortieth Ohio, who in the darkness charged into the rebel lines and with several of his men were surrounded and captured. He is a very valuable officer. Colonel Price was wounded severely. Colonel Champion and Lieutenant-Colonel Smith, of the Ninety-sixth Illinois,were also wounded. These officers behaved with great gallantry. In this connection I must also mention the efficient conduct of Colonel McClain and Lieutenant-Colonel Wood, Fifty-first Ohio Volunteers; Lieutenant-Colonel Evans and Major Hoskins, Twenty-first Kentucky. Every officer and man, with few exceptions, did their duty, and I regret that I cannot mention each one personally. Without the most determined courage and efficiency as soldiers on their part, I must have been beaten. I congratulate them on winning one of the most fiercely contested fights in the history of this rebellion. This fight took place on one of the spurs of Kenesaw Mountain.

June 21, we strengthened our works under a heavy cannonade from four batteries. The skirmishing was very severe day and night. June 22, the artillery firing was again renewed with great fury. At 10 p. m. my brigade was relieved by a brigade from the Fourteenth Corps, and we moved three miles to the right, relieving General Ward's brigade, of the Twentieth Corps. The Ninetyninth Ohio was to-day transferred to the Twenty-third Corps by order of General Thomas, and its place supplied by the Forty-fifth Ohio. It is a gallant and efficient regiment, and carries my best wishes wherever it may go. June 23, I was ordered to take the skirmish line in my front. Ordering forward the Eighty-fourth Indiana, Colonel Neff commanding, they gallantly assaulted and took the enemy's line, with 28 men and 2 officers prisoners, [245] Before the line could be strengthened by defenses, the enemy rallied and drove in a portion of the Eighty-fourth Indiana, but they held the most important portion of the line against every effort to dislodge them. June 24, 25, and 26, my position was unchanged, and the time was occupied in throwing up defenses, night and day, while being constantly engaged in heavy skirmishing. June 27, I was ordered to support an assaulting column composed partly of different brigades. The brigade I was ordered immediately td support being General Harker's, I took and maintained the position assigned me. The enemy's skirmish line being taken, was occupied and held by the Forty-fifth and Fifty-first Ohio and Twenty-first Kentucky, of this brigade, the brigade of General Harker being withdrawn. June 28, still occupying same position; no skirmishing, the men being engaged in burying the dead. June 29, the position of the brigade was unchanged. Heavy skirmishing day and night, with but little intermission. During the night the rebels made a furious attack on our lines, but were repulsed with but slight loss. We know not their loss, but presume it was heavy. June 30, position still unchanged.

The health of the general commanding this brigade, from continued exposure night and day for over two months, had become so impaired as in the opinion of the brigade surgeon to put in serious danger his life or the permanent derangement of his health if subjected to further exposure and fatigue. It was with deep regret that he was compelled by disease to leave his command on the eve of one of the most decisive victories over treason. This regret was more poignant from the fact that he had been actively engaged in all the battles in which the Army of the Cumberland had been engaged, and it was his highest pride and honor to be with it in every one so long as he was connected therewith.

My command was left with Colonel Taylor, of the Fortieth Ohio, who will report any further action taken by my brigade up to the evacuation of Atlanta. It is with feelings of pride, a soldier's just and honest pride, that I commend the courage, fortitude, fidelity, efficiency, and endurance of the officers and men of my command. For two months under fire, working day and night, through good and inclement weather, no murmur was heard, but the most determined spirit evinced to subdue the enemies of our country. I must specially commend Colonel Price, Colonel Champion, Colonel Taylor, and Colonel McClain, for promptness and efficiency as officers. Also Surgeons Beach, Walton, Wing, Pierce, and Averdick, for care and attention to my sick and wounded. Also of Father Cooney and Chaplain Burkett, for well-timed and faithful ministrations as chaplains.

The loss of my brigade was heavy, being, up to July 1: Killedcommissioned officers, 4; enlisted men, 91. Wounded-commissioned officers, 22; enlisted men, 380. Missing-commissioned officers, 2; enlisted men, 60. Making a total of killed, wounded, and missing in officers, of 28 ; and of enlisted men, 531. Grand total, 559. For particulars of loss to each portion of thq command, and at what time, see tabular statement as part of this report. We took in prisoners 3 officers and 88 enlisted men; total 91. (See provostmarshal's statement.

Of my staff-Capt. H. F. Temple, acting assistant adjutant-general; my aides, Lieut. J. P. Phipps and Lieut. J. Clarence Peck; Captain North, brigadd inspector; Lieutenant Gunn, topographical [246] engineer; Lieutenant Pepoon, provost-marshal; Captain Hodgdon, commissary; Lieutenant Dean, controlling ambulances, and Lieutenant Conyers, commanding provost guards — I can most truthfully say that every member of it has so demeaned himself as to merit promotion. Brave, faithful, and efficient, they are an honor to the positions they hold.


Walter C. Whitaker, Brigadier-General, Second Brigade, First Division, Fourth Corps, Army of the Cumberland.

Major Sinclair, Asst. Adjt. Gen., First Division, Fourth Corps.

Inclosure no. 1.

List of prisoners captured by Second brigade, First Division, Fourth Army Corps, during the months of May and June, 1864.


G. W. Pepoon, First Lieutenant and Provost-Marshal.

Inclosure no. 2.

Effective force of Second brigade, First Division, Fovrth Army Corps, May 3, 1864.


H. F. Temple, Captain and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

Blue Springs, Tenn., May 3, 1864.


Inclosure no. 3.

Report of killed, wounded, and missing of the Second brigade, First Division, Fourth Army Corps, from May 3 to June 30, 1864.


H. F. Temple, Captain and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

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