No. 41. report of Col. Joseph Conrad, Fifteenth Missouri Infantry.
Hdqrs. Fifteenth regiment Missouri Infantry, Camp near Atlanta, Ga., September 12, 1864.Sir: I have the honor to report the part taken by my regiment in the late campaign and capture of Atlanta: In pursuance of orders, my regiment, as part of the First Brigade, Second Division, Fourth Army Corps, left Cleveland, Tenn., May 3. Continued our march until May 14. When near Resaca my regiment, for the first time in this campaign, was actually engaged. On the 14th, about 3 p. m., the first line of our brigade was ordered by Col. F. T. Sherman, at that time commanding First Brigade, Second Division, Fourth Army Corps, to relieve part of the Third Brigade of same division and corps, at the time hotly engaged with the enemy. In doing so my regiment, which was on the right, had to move across a large open field, exposed to a terrible fire of the enemy, who opened upon us with his artillery, first with shell, and as we came within range, with grape and canister, but still my men moved on in good order. The banks of a small creek offered us temporary shelter; we stopped here for about ten minutes, when we, with the Thirty-sixth Illinois Volunteers, which regiment had also come up, made a second charge on a small fort of the enemy in our front. Again we had to cross an open field; again we were exposed to a murderous artillery fire and musketry. We came close to the enemy's works, drove the same away, and held our position until our men were entirely out of ammunition, when we fell back to the above-mentioned creek. Ammunition having arrived, we opened a brisk fire again, held our position, and stayed there until 9 p. m., when, by order of Colonel Sherman, we were relieved and went into bivouac. My regiment was that day for six hours under constant fire. On the 15th of May at 8 a. m. my regiment relieved the Twenty-fourth Wisconsin and were under fire for two hours. Were relieved at 10 a. m. by the Twenty-second Illinois Volunteers; took position in the second line of our brigade. Continued our march on the 16th of May. On the 17th Company F was detailed as flankers to cover our left, Companies B and G to cover our right flank; Companies A and C to support the Eighty-eighth, which was deployed as skirmishers and had relieved the Thirty-sixth Illinois; the rest of the regiment was held in reserve either to support the skirmish line or right flank wherever it was required. In this way we moved all day until about 4 o'clock, when I deployed the rest of my regiment as skirmishers on the extreme right  of our brigade, connecting on my left with the Twenty-fourth Wisconsin and right with General Wood's division. In this position I remained all night. Was relieved the next morning (18th) at 6 o'clock by the Forty-second Illinois Volunteers. Continued our march again on same day. Passed Kingston on the 19th. Encamped near Kingston until May 22, when we again moved on. Met the enemy again on the 25th of May near Dallas. During the stay of our army before Dallas my regiment was almost daily more or less engaged with the enemy. Companies F, G, and I, especially, suffered severely on the 27th, a new skirmish line being established on that day, and said companies being out as skirmishers. On 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th of June we guarded, with the rest of our brigade, the hospital of our corps. Joined the army again on the 9th of June. Moved on the 11th. Were again engaged June 27 near Kenesaw Mountain. My regiment, which had been relieved at 5 o'clock in the morning from picket, was posted on the left of the second line of our brigade. We moved in close column by division right in front. A terrible artillery fire and musketry received us as soon as we came outside of our breast-works and crossing an open field. When we came to a halt I deployed my regiment and covered our left flank, in which position I remained until I received orders from Brig. Gen. N. Kimball, commanding First Brigade, to withdraw my regiment to take our old position we had left in the morning. The order was carried out in good order. We were kept in reserve until the 30th of June, when the regiment took position on the left of the front line, where we remained until July 2, 8 p. m., when we moved to the left. Marched again on the 3d of July. Passed Marietta. Remained all the day on the 4th of July in camp in line of battle. Moved on the 5th. Encamped near the Chattahoochee River. Changed camps on the 7th of July. Marched to Roswell July 9. Crossed the Chattahoochee River the same night. Recrossed the river on the 12th. Arrived in camp again on the 13th of July. Crossed the river again on the 14th. Stayed in camp until July the 18th. Resumed our march again.. Camped that night near Buck Head. Left camp in the evening of the 19th; crossed Peach Tree Creek and went in position. On the 20th of July, in the morning, changed our position. My regiment was posted in the center of the second line. About 3 p. m. I was ordered to relieve the Eighty-eighth Illinois Volunteers, then deployed as skirmishers. After having the same relieved I was ordered to advance to ascertain the enemy's position, strength, &c. Notwithstanding that I had no connection on my left, I moved forward, being ordered to do so by General Kimball. Having advanced about 400 yards my right met the enemy's skirmishers in a hollow, where they had rifle-pits, out of which we drove them. My regiment was nearly on the summit of a very commanding ridge in front of us when the Seventy-third Illinois, with which we connected on our right, came to a halt. I also ordered halt, the same time refusing my left in order to protect my left flank. I then ordered a few men to go on the top of the ridge to ascertain if any enemy in force was near us. They came back in a few minutes reporting to me that the enemy was approaching in heavy columns on our left and also in our immediate front. Their reports proved to be true. A few minutes afterward the enemy appeared in heavy force right in our front, on our left and right, firing and yelling, demanding to surrender, &c. Seeing the impossibility to hold my ground, I ordered the men to fall slowly back, which was done in good order, the men  running from tree to tree, always keeping firing up, until we came near our works. The Second Battalion of the regiment, having to make a detour, came in the works of the Second Brigade, where they remained fighting with the rest of said brigade until toward evening. The First Battalion came in on the main Atlanta road. I posted it on the right of the Eighty-eighth Illinois Volunteers, near the First Ohio Battery, where the men bravely fought. Toward evening, after we had the enemy several times repulsed, I moved the Second Battalion also there. We kept this position until July 22. On the 22d of July, under a most galling artillery fire, we took our position, my regiment on the left of the second line on the main Atlanta road near the White house, in which position we remained until July 26, when our brigade was put in reserve. On the 1st day of August our brigade moved to the left, near the Howard house, where we stayed until August 25, when the regiment, with the rest of the brigade, moved to the right. Continued our march with the brigade. Met the enemy again September 1 near Jonesborough. My regiment was held in reserve until about 6 p. m., when I was ordered by the colonel commanding brigade to deploy my men as skirmishers and drive the enemy out of their rifle-pits the same had in front of us near a belt of woods. We advanced and drove the enemy out of their works. Received afterward orders to advance again as skirmishers; did so. Advanced about 500 yards and established there picket-line, where I remained until next morning about 5 a. m., when I was ordered to advance as skirmishers; but after having advanced about a quarter of a mile, was ordered back and joined the brigade again. Marched that day to the neighborhood of Lovejoy's Station, where we went in position, my regiment being the farther right one of the second line. Left camp September 5 at 8 p. m. and arrived here in camp near Atlanta, Ga., September 8. As to casualties, I respectfully refer you to list forwarded to you before.1 I remain, very respectfully,