O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XXVII/1 [S# 43] -- Gettysburg Campaign
No. 252. -- Report of Col. James Wood, jr.,
One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry.
IN THE FIELD, NEAR HAGERSTOWN, MD, July 12, 1863.
I have the honor to report
that the regiment under my command, forming a part of the Second Brigade,
Second Division, Eleventh Corps, Army of the Potomac, left Emmitsburg,
Md., for Gettysburg, Pa., on Wednesday, July 1 instant, with the brigade
and division of which it forms a part. When about half way between Emmitsburg
and Gettysburg, information was received that the First Corps, under General
Reynolds, had come in collision with the enemy near the latter place, and
that an engagement was then in progress. The Eleventh Corps was ordered
to hurry forward to reenforce the First.
On arriving near Gettysburg, the brigade was put in position on Cemetery Hill, near to and south of the village of Gettysburg, for the purpose of covering the retreat of the First Corps, it having been compelled to fall back by the superior force of the enemy. The position assigned to this regiment was on the left of the brigade, on the road leading from Gettysburg to Taneytown, about 30 yards in front of the artillery, placed in position in our rear, on the crest of Cemetery Hill, and which artillery we were to support. The enemy's line of battle being directly in our front, we were placed between the fire of our own and the enemy's artillery. In the position assigned us, the regiment was deployed in line of battle behind a stone wall or fence, that fenced out the road from the adjoining field.
The enemy threw out a strong line of sharpshooters or skirmishers directly in our front, and within musket range of our line. To meet this, a similar line of sharpshooters or skirmishers was thrown out upon our front toward the enemy. The sharpshooters were posted at about 150 yards from those of the enemy. The enemy kept up an almost continuous fire upon our skirmishers, and our line of sharpshooters was placed in the houses in the village of Gettysburg, from which we were annoyed on our flanks.
Our position was near the center of the line of battle. This regiment was the extreme left of the Eleventh Corps, and connected with the right of the Second Corps. This position substantially we occupied during the three days' battle of Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, the 1st, 2d, and 3d instant, with the exception that on the evening of the 2d we were ordered farther to the right, to assist in repelling an attack on our right wing, then in progress. The enemy were repulsed without our assistance, and we were ordered back to our former position. During the whole time we occupied this position, an almost continual conflict was kept up between the enemy's sharpshooters and ours. Three or more companies of this regiment were kept constantly detailed, and deployed as skirmishers, to take care of and keep at proper distance the enemy's sharpshooters. The regiment was also exposed to the terrific fire which the enemy brought to bear upon the position in our rear on Cemetery Hill.
The loss of the regiment in killed, wounded, and missing was 108. It is needless for me to say anything of the good conduct of the officers and men of this regiment, as it was during the whole of the battle under the immediate supervision and observation of the colonel commanding the brigade. I may be allowed, however, to remark that for new troops, for the first time under fire, the conduct of both officers and men through the whole of this memorable contest is, in my judgment, deserving of the highest need of praise, and that the coolness and bravery exhibited could not have been excelled even by veteran troops. I herewith inclose a list of casualties.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JR., Colonel, Commanding.
Capt. B. F. STONE,
Jr., Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXX/4 [S# 53]
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN KENTUCKY, SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA, TENNESSEE, MISSISSIPPI, NORTH ALABAMA, AND NORTH GEORGIA, FROM AUGUST 11, 1863, TO OCTOBER 19, 1863.--UNION CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.(*)--#2
BRIDGEPORT, October 2, 1863.
Assistant Adjutant-General, Chattanooga:
Following portions of General Hooker's command arrived:
First Division, Major-General
First Brigade, Col. F. Hecker commanding: Forty-fifth New York Volunteers, Major Koch commanding; Eighty-second Illinois Volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel Salomon commanding; Sixty-first Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Bown commanding; Eighty-second Ohio, Lieutenant-Colonel Thomson commanding; One hundred and forty-third New York, Col. H. Boughton commanding.
Second Brigade, Col. W. H. Jacobs commanding: Fifty-eighth New York Volunteers, Captain Esembaux commanding; Seventy-fifth Pennsylvania Volunteers, Major Ledig commanding; Sixty-eighth New York Volunteers, Major Steinhausen commanding: One hundred and nineteenth New York Volunteers, Colonel Lock-man commanding; Twenty-sixth Wisconsin Volunteers, Captain Winkler commanding; One hundred and forty-first New York Volunteers, Colonel Logie commanding.
Second Division, Eleventh Army Corps, General Steinwehr commanding.
First Brigade, Second Division, Eleventh Army Corps, Col. A. Buschbeck commanding: Twenty-seventh Pennsylvania Volunteers, Major McAloon commanding; Seventy-third Pennsylvania Volunteers, Colonel Moore commanding; One hundred and thirty-fourth New York Volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel Jackson commanding: One hundred and fifty-fourth New York Volunteers, Major Warner commanding; Thirty-third New Jersey Volunteers, Colonel Mindil commanding.
Second Brigade, Col. Orland Smith commanding: Seventy-third Ohio Volunteers, Major Hurst commanding; Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteers, Major Robbins commanding; Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteers, Colonel Underwood commanding; One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers, Colonel Wood commanding; One hundred and sixty-eighth New York Volunteers, Colonel Brown commanding.
R. F. SMITH,
Colonel, Commanding Post.
(Same to Brigadier-General Morgan.)
BRIDGEPORT, October 2, 1863.
Tenth Illinois, Sixtieth Illinois, and troops from Battle Creek moved yesterday about 3 p.m. Tenth Michigan moved about 8 p.m. Have heard nothing from them.
R. F. SMITH,
Colonel, Commanding Post.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXX/4 [S# 53]
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN KENTUCKY, SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA, TENNESSEE, MISSISSIPPI, NORTH ALABAMA, AND NORTH GEORGIA, FROM AUGUST 11, 1863, TO OCTOBER 19, 1863.--UNION CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.(*)--#12
HDQRS. SECOND BRIG., SECOND DIV., 11TH ARMY CORPS,
Stevenson, Ala., October 11, 1863.
Col. T. A. MEYSENBURG,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Bridgeport, Ala.:
The present disposition
of railroad guards is as follows: Three companies at Tantalon, under Major
Arnold, of One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers; four companies
at Anderson, under Colonel Wood, who has also two companies between Anderson
and Stevenson; one company each from the Fifty-fifth and Seventy-third
Ohio, and one from the Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteers are posted
west of this point; one company of Thirty-third Massachusetts is posted
at Widow's Creek, making thirteen companies on the line.
I suggest the propriety of permitting Colonel Wood to take his remaining company to Anderson, whence he can communicate easily by telegraph. He is instructed to make the same dispositions for the present as have heretofore existed. He will be duly notified of the dividing line, as advised in your written order of this date. Will report further by letter.
Colonel, Commanding Second Brigade.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXX/4 [S# 53]
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN KENTUCKY, SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA, TENNESSEE, MISSISSIPPI, NORTH ALABAMA, AND NORTH GEORGIA, FROM AUGUST 11, 1863, TO OCTOBER 19, 1863.--UNION CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.(*)--#18
HDQRS. SECOND BRIG., SECOND DIV., ELEVENTH CORPS,
Stevenson, Ala., October 17, 1863.
Lieut. Col. C. GODDARD,
In compliance with General
Orders, No. 53, Department of the Cumberland, current series, I have the
honor to report the disposition of my command for the protection of the
railroad from Widow's Creek, between Bridgeport and Stevenson, to the tunnel
between Tantalon and Cowan Station.
The brigade consists of the Fifty-fifth and Seventy-third Ohio Regiments, the Thirty-third Massachusetts, and One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
For convenience' sake, I propose to number the posts from east to west, beginning at Widow's Creek,
No. 1, where is posted one company under command of Lieut. Caleb Blood, Thirty-third Massachusetts.
No. 2 (bridge next west of Stevenson): One company, under command of Lieut. A. S. Wormley, Fifty-fifth Ohio.
No. 3 (bridge): One company, under command of Capt. L. M. Buchwalter, Seventy-third Ohio.
No. 4 (bridge): One company, under command of Capt. James Farson, Thirty-third Massachusetts.
No. 5 (bridge): One company under command of Lieut. John Kinney, Seventy-third Ohio.
No. 6 (trestle): One small company, under command of Lieutenant Bromley, Fifty-fifth Ohio.
No. 7 (bridge next east of Anderson): One company, under command of Lieutenant Bailey, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
No. 8 (Anderson Station), where Col. James Wood, commanding One hundred and thirty-sixth New York, has his headquarters, and three companies of his regiment.
No. 9 (bridge next west of Stevenson): One company, under command of Captain Chapin, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
No. 10 (bridge): One company, under command of Captain Cole, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
No. 11 (bridge): One company, under command of Captain Cameron, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
No. 12. (Tantalon Station and trestle, thence west to tunnel): Three companies of One hundred and thirty-sixth New York, under command of Major Arnold, same regiment.
This arrangement was partially
instituted on the 11th instant, and fully consummated on the 14th, since
which no event worthy of note has transpired. The remainder of the brigade
is encamped at this station near the fort.
The recent rise in the creek (Crow Creek) rendered it necessary to remove some of the companies from the stockades, but not so far as to interfere with the performance of their duties.
I have directed Colonel Wood to report from Anderson daily through me. If necessary to have daily reports from the commander at each bridge, please advise me.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel Seventy-third Ohio Regt., Comdg. Second Brigade.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXI/1 [S# 54]
OCTOBER 26-29, 1863.--Reopening of the Tennessee River ...
No. 15. --Report of Brig. Gen. Adolph von Steinwehr, U.S. Army, commanding Second Division.
CHURCH OF JOHN THE BAPTIST,
October 30, 1863.
On the 27th instant, this
division broke camp and left Bridgeport at 6 a.m., the First Brigade leading.
At about 5 p.m. we arrived at Whiteside's and camped for the night. On
the 28th, we marched at daybreak toward Brown's Ferry in the same order.
At the Trenton road the first indications of the enemy were seen. At about
2 p.m. the advance guard of the First Brigade was fired upon. The Seventy-third
Pennsylvania was deployed as skirmishers and advanced. The Second Brigade
advanced, the Seventy-third Ohio in a deployed line to the right of the
Seventy-third Pennsylvania, and the Thirty-third Massachusetts followed
as a reserve, together with the artillery. When the advanced regiments
reached the foot of the hill a skirmish ensued. After firing a few rounds,
we charged upon the enemy, who fell back across the Lookout Creek. The
command was then assembled upon the Chattanooga road and moved forward.
Late in the afternoon we went into camp in Lookout Valley, about 4 miles
At about 12 midnight a firing was heard in our front and shortly afterward I received orders to advance with my division. I advanced with the Second Brigade, the First following. When we had advanced about one-quarter of a mile beyond the junction of the roads, I was ordered to take and hold a hill upon our left flank, which was occupied by the enemy. I ordered Col. O. Smith to advance upon the hill with the Seventy-third Ohio and Thirty-third Massachusetts in line of battle, and directed the One hundred and Thirty-sixth New York to ascend the hill on the left of the other two regiments. The troops were ordered not to fire, but to use the bayonet. They made a gallant charge and took the crest. The enemy fled, leaving some arms and intrenching tools in their rifle-pits. The tools were immediately made use of to strengthen their position by the men. We captured about 50 prisoners. The hill was occupied by Law's brigade, of Jenkins' division, Longstreet's corps, numbering five regiments, about 2,000 men. Our attacking force was not quite 700 muskets. The First Brigade was held as reserve immediately behind the Second Brigade, and advanced into the gaps right and left of the hill, to prevent a flanking movement of the enemy.
A. VON STEINWEHR,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Second Division.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXI/1 [S# 54]
OCTOBER 26-29, 1863.--Reopening of the Tennessee River ...
No. 19. --Report of Col. James Wood, jr., One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry.
HDQRS. 136TH New YORK VOLUNTEER INFANTRY,
In the Field, Lookout Valley,
Near Chattanooga, Tenn., November 1, 1863.
I have the honor to submit
the following report of the operations of the regiment under my command
since and including the 26th day of October ultimo. On that day I was relieved
from guarding that part of the Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad and the
bridges and wooden structures thereon between Anderson and Tantalon, to
which I had been assigned by orders from brigade headquarters, bearing
date 11th October ultimo. The regiment marched from Anderson to Bridgeport
to join the brigade from which it had been detached while guarding the
railroad. The march was made over the Cumberland Mountains by a steep and
declivitous road or bridle path inaccessible to wagons, under the guidance
of L. Willis, esq., a firm and unconditional Union man, residing near Anderson.
The regiment arrived at Bridgeport on the evening of the same day, having
marched a distance of 16 miles. On arriving at Bridgeport I learned that
the brigade had marched the evening before to Shellmound, on the south
side of the Tennessee River. I thereupon reported, with my command, to
Brig. Gen. A. von Steinwehr, division commander, and encamped for the night.
During the evening I received orders to march with the Eleventh Corps at
sunrise the next morning, and to join my brigade on the march.
In pursuance of the order, the regiment marched with the corps at the time designated, crossed the Tennessee River at Bridgeport on pontoon bridges, and took up the line of march on the Chattanooga road. At Shellmound the regiment came up with and joined the brigade. From this point the regiment, with the Eleventh Corps, of which it formed a part, marched to Brown's Ferry, on the Tennessee River, in Lookout Valley, about 3 miles from Chattanooga, at which point it arrived near sunset of 28th October ultimo. Although the troops were on two occasions during the march massed in column by division, preparatory to an engagement in case the enemy attempted to dispute our progress (of which it was reported there were indications), and some skirmish firing was heard on our front, this regiment did not see, nor was it in any way molested by the enemy on this march, except that as soon as the marching column came within range of his artillery, posted on Lookout Mountain, he opened upon it with shot and shell, and kept up the fire until the whole had passed. But such was the elevation of the mountain, and necessary inaccuracy of aim, that the cannonade was entirely harmless. The shot and shell fell wide of the mark, and did not so much as create any sensible uneasiness among the men of my command. I may be allowed to mention that as I passed the point most exposed to the fire I found Major-General Hooker stationed beside the road notifying the men as they passed that there was no danger from the artillery firing, and testifying by his presence and position that he believed what he said. It is unnecessary for me to say that this conduct of our commanding general had the most inspiriting influence on the officers and men of my command.
On arriving at our place of destination this regiment, with the brigade, encamped for the night. About 1 o'clock of the morning of the 29th ultimo, I was awakened by skirmish firing, which seemed to be a short distance back on the road over which we had marched. The firing rapidly increased in intensity, and the roar of artillery soon mingling with it, admonished us that some part of our forces were engaged with the enemy. The regiment was immediately ordered to fall in under arms, and to march in direction of the conflict. It was soon ascertained that the firing was occasioned by an attack made by the enemy upon the command of Brigadier-General Geary, of the Twelfth Corps, who had been following us from Bridgeport, and was a few hours in our rear. His command, consisting of a part of his division, had encamped for the night at a place called Wauhatchie, about 3 miles from the position occupied by the Eleventh Corps. General Howard ordered his command to march at once to the aid of General Geary. This regiment, at a double-quick, took up the line of march in rear of the brigade, being preceded by the Seventy-third Ohio, Thirty-third Massachusetts, and Fifty-fifth Ohio. When about 1 ½ miles from camp it was ascertained that the enemy occupied the crest of a hill, at the foot of which the road on which we were marching passed, and it was regarded important to dislodge him. Col. O. Smith, commanding the brigade, was ordered to do it. Preparatory to executing the movement, the brigade was halted in the road. Colonel Smith sent forward the Seventy-third Ohio and Thirty-third Massachusetts, and directed them to charge the hill and drive the enemy therefrom.
In the meantime, I was ordered by Brigadier-General Steinwehr, division commander, to march my regiment by file to the left and form line of battle west of and perpendicular to the road on which we had been halted. This was at the foot of another hill, about 200 yards north of the one occupied by the enemy, and similar in appearance to it and from which it was separated by a gap or pass. When I had completed the movement ordered, I was directed to send two companies to skirmish up the hill at the foot of which our line of battle was formed, to ascertain if it was occupied by the enemy. I immediately detached Companies H and K from the left of my left wing to execute the movement, and placed the force in command of Captain Eldredge, Company K. The Seventy-third Ohio and Thirty.-third Massachusetts being hard pressed by the enemy on the hill which they had been ordered to charge, my regiment was ordered to their support. I marched to the base of the same hill, halted, and formed line of battle facing it. My center was opposite the highest crest of the hill. Although it was a bright moonlight night, neither the height of the hill nor the obstacles to be encountered could be seen. I was ordered to charge in line of battle to the top of the hill, drive off the enemy, and form a junction with the Thirty-third Massachusetts on my right. It should be borne in mind that the two companies detached as skirmishers had not at this time rejoined the regiment.
I gave the command "forward," when the regiment advanced in line of battle at as quick a pace as the steep ascent of the hill would permit. Moved steadily and firmly forward under a brisk and constant fire from the enemy, reached and crowned the crest of the hill, drove off the enemy, and took possession. Not a shot was fired by my men until the crest was gained, when one volley was discharged at the retreating enemy. At the time the charge was made the enemy was engaged in throwing up a line of rifle-pits. We captured his intrenching tools. Having gained and occupied the crest of the hill, I deployed one company to the front as skirmishers, moved by the right flank, and formed a connection with the Thirty-third Massachusetts, which regiment had preceded me, charging up the hill on my right, and was vigorously engaged with the enemy when I reached the crest. The victory was complete. The crest of the hill is not more than 6 yards in width, from which there is a rapid descent into a valley on the other side. Down this declivity the enemy precipitately fled in the utmost confusion. He staggered under the intrepid charges and deadly blows delivered to him by the braves of the Seventy-third Ohio and Thirty-third Massachusetts. His discomfiture was made complete by the vigorous and splendid charge of the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers. The ground over which he retreated was strewn with rifles, swords, hats, caps, and haversacks. As daylight opened upon us, we were all astonished at the audacity of our charge and astounded at our success. The hill is over 200 feet perpendicular height, and the distance from the road where I formed line of battle to the crest of the hill is 180 yards.
Prisoners report (and the report is confirmed by other information, and may be regarded as reliable) that the force of the enemy occupying the hill consisted of Law's brigade, Hood's division, Longstreet's corps. This brigade was composed of six regiments, five of which we're posted on the crest of the hill, the sixth being held in reserve in the valley below. The face of the hill is covered by a forest and a thick coating of leaves, broken by gullies or ravines, and obstructed by brush and upturned trees. Over and through these obstructions, up an ascent of over 45 degrees, the men charged with a steadiness and precision that could not be excelled by the most experienced and veteran troops. At no time was there any confusion; at no time was there any wavering. From the commencement to the end of the charge the alignment of the line of battle was wonderfully preserved. My hearty commendation and profound thanks are especially due to the officers and men of my command for their brave and gallant conduct on this occasion, as was deprived of the assistance of my able and energetic field officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Faulkner (being absent on detached service in State of New York) and Major Arnold (being detained at Bridgeport by an attack of illness which rendered him unable to take the field). There is no occasion to make special mention of any officer or man of my command, for every one engaged seemed to perform his whole duty. No one faltered; there were no stragglers. All are alike entitled to credit; all alike should receive the commendation of their superior officers, the gratitude of their country, and the friends of all may well feel proud of the bravery and gallantry which was exhibited.
Our casualties, it affords me much pleasure to say, are slight, our loss being only 2 killed and 4 wounded. This exemption from disaster is due to the steepness of the hill up which we charged, the bullets from the enemy's rifles passing harmlessly over our heads. The casualties happened after we reached the crest. We captured 5 prisoners and 40 rifles left on the field by the retreating enemy.
I have the honor to be, captain, respectfully,
JAMES WOOD, JR.,
Capt. B. F. STONE,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXI/1 [S# 54]
UNION CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.
ANDERSON, October 25, 1863--12 m.
Col. W. W. PACKER,
Commanding at Tantalon:
Pursuant to orders General
Williams desires you to relieve all the guards of the Eleventh Corps and
General Geary's division you find at Tantalon and Anderson and between
those point. From the best he can ascertain the present position of the
troops to be relieved by you is as follows:
Tantalon, three companies One hundred and eleventh Pennsylvania; three bridges between Tantalon and here, three companies, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
Anderson, three companies One hundred and thirty-sixth New York; first bridge below Anderson, one company One hundred and thirty-sixth New York.
This will take one entire regiment and it should be a good one.
You will move the other two regiments and the batteries to this point at once, and report to General Williams at this post for further orders. You can relieve the troops referred to as you come along, as the railroad track is the best way for the troops to come, keeping a guard with the batteries, which will not have to leave the track a great distance.
I am, colonel, your obedient servant,
S. E. PITTMAN,
Captain and Assistant Adjutant-General.
P. S.--General Hooker's orders are that as fast as these troops are relieved they shall march to Bridgeport.
S. E. PITTMAN,
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXI/2 [S# 55]
NOVEMBER 23-27, 1863.--The Chattanooga-Ringgold Campaign.
No. 103.--Report of Col. James Wood, jr., One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry, including march to the relief of Knoxville.
HDQRS. 136TH REGIMENT NEW YORK VOL. INFANTRY,
Lookout Valley, December 19, 1863.
I have the honor to submit
the following report of the operations of the regiment under my command
since and including the 22d day of November ultimo, up to the 19th day
of December instant, when the regiment returned to its present camp:
On the 22d day of November last, pursuant to orders, the regiment marched with the brigade to Chattanooga. We left camp at 1 p.m. of that day, and arrived at Chattanooga soon after sundown and bivouacked on the outskirts of the city. The regimental baggage, including all the personal effects of the officers except such as they wore on their persons, were left behind in charge of the regimental quartermaster. The only thing noticeable in connection with this march and bivouac was the great scarcity of wood in and around Chattanooga outside of the enemy's line. So great was this scarcity that it was with the utmost difficulty a sufficient quantity could be obtained to enable the men to boil their coffee. The regiment occupied the ground on which it bivouacked until the afternoon of the 23d ultimo.
At about 1 o'clock of the 23d of November, I received orders to march in column by division toward the enemy's line at the foot of Missionary Ridge. This march was in connection with the brigade, division, and corps of which the regiment forms a part. All knapsacks, blankets, and tents of the men were, by order, left on the ground on which they bivouacked. The Eleventh Corps was moved in front and to the right of Fort Wood, and was understood to be held in reserve to the Fourteenth Army Corps in the attack made by it on the enemy posted at the foot of Missionary Ridge. The attack was successfully made, and the enemy driven from his position. The Eleventh Corps then marched to the front, to the left of the position it then occupied, and formed in line of battle on the left of the Fourteenth Corps. The Second Brigade was formed in two lines, the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteer Infantry on the right, and the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry on the left, deployed in line of battle, forming the first line. In this formation we advanced upon the enemy; his pickets were soon driven in, and a spirited contest very soon commenced between his skirmishers and the skirmishers thrown out from the One hundred and thirty-sixth and Fifty-fifth. The enemy's skirmishers held a strong position in a brick house which was immediately in front of the line of our advance and between our forces and their line of battle. This strong position of the enemy's skirmishers was handsomely and gallantly carried by our skirmishers, and they were driven behind their line of battle, which was protected by a strong line of rifle-pits. This encounter did not in the least retard the advance of our line of battle, and the enemy had given the order to retreat from their rifle-pits, when it was discovered that the line of battle of the Second Brigade was in advance of the Third Division on our right, and the First Brigade of the Second Division on our left; that in fact the troops on our right and left had come to a halt. Our brigade commander was then compelled, reluctantly, to give the command to halt. We were at this time within the enemy's line of pickets, and had we been supported could easily have driven him from and taken possession of his rifle-pits. Night coming upon us, we were ordered to hold the position we occupied in halting.
In this skirmish I lost 1 man killed and 2 officers and 8 men wounded, as will more fully appear by the list of casualties hereto annexed.
During the night I caused to be thrown up in our front a line of rifle-pits, connecting with a similar line thrown up by the Twenty-sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, of the Third Division, on our right, and by the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry on our left.
On the morning of the 24th, by order of Major-General Howard, I swung round my line of battle to the left, making a left-quarter wheel upon the left of the regiment as a pivot. This threw my regiment in front of the line of rifle-pits which had been thrown up. The Third Division had been thrown forward, which necessitated this movement in order to form a connection with its left. A new line of rifle-pits was immediately thrown up in front of the new position. The regiment occupied the position behind this new line of rifle-pits during the day and night of the 24th. Skirmish firing from sharpshooters was kept up most of the time by the enemy, but without injury to this regiment.
On the morning of the 25th, the Eleventh Corps left the position which it had occupied, and marched by the left flank around the left of Missionary Ridge, and joined the forces under General Sherman, who, it was understood, was to make an attack upon and, if possible, drive the enemy from Missionary Ridge. This regiment took position with the corps on the left of Sherman's forces, and intrenched itself by the erection of rifle-pits, which position it held during the day, while Sherman made his contemplated attack. In the evening of that day it was announced that Missionary Ridge had been carried by the Fourteenth Corps, under Major-General Palmer, and by the forces under command of Major-General Hooker. The regiment received orders to march the next morning at daybreak.
Pursuant to orders, on the 26th November the regiment took up the line of march toward the mouth of Chickamauga Creek, crossed the creek at that place on pontoon bridge, and continued its march toward Chickamauga Station, in pursuit of the retreating enemy. The pursuit was continued during the day, and the regiment bivouacked at night some 2 or 3 miles from Chickamauga Station, on the road toward Ringgold.
The march was continued the next day until we arrived at Graysville. From Graysville the Eleventh Corps left the main column and marched to Parker's Gap. At this place, the Second Brigade, of the Second Division, and the brigade of the Third Division, under command of Col. O. Smith, was directed to proceed to Red Clay Station, on the Georgia and East Tennessee Railroad, and tear up and destroy the track of that railroad. This regiment formed a part of the expedition. We marched to Red Clay Station, and the Second Brigade, under command of the undersigned, tore up and destroyed about 1 mile of the railroad, fired and burned the depot buildings and appurtenances, and returned to Parker's Gap and bivouacked for the night, having marched a distance during the day of 27 miles.
On the 28th, the regiment changed its camping ground in the same neighborhood.
On the 29th, the regiment commenced its march toward Knoxville, with the forces under command of General Sherman, for the relief of Knoxville, and the forces then under General Burnside, it being understood that that place was closely invested by the enemy under General Longstreet. On that day we marched to Cleveland.
On the 30th, we marched to Charleston.
Having constructed a bridge over the Hiwassee River, on the 1st December, we marched to Athens.
On the 2d December, we marched to Philadelphia.
On the 3d, we marched to Loudon.
On the 4th and 5th the regiment lay at Loudon, awaiting the erection of a bridge over the Tennessee River.
On the 6th, we resumed the march, crossed the Little Tennessee River, and arrived at Louisville the evening of the same day. Then it was ascertained that Longstreet had raised the siege of Knoxville, and commenced his retreat toward Virginia. The regiment continued in Louisville one day.
On the 8th of December the regiment commenced its return march and arrived in camp in Lookout Valley, on the evening of the 17th instant, the forces with which it was connected having been victorious over the enemy and having fully accomplished and more than accomplished the object of the campaign.
In this long march the men had neither tents nor blankets, and were compelled to rely on the country through which they passed for forage and subsistence. Yet it was made cheerfully and with alacrity. The officers and men under my command encountered all privations and suffering without complaint or murmur. One man died on the march from pneumonia, brought on undoubtedly by exposure.
I have the honor to be, captain, very respectfully, &c.,
JAMES WOOD, JR.,
Capt. B. F. STONE,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/2 [S# 73]
MAY 1-SEPTEMBER 8, 1864.--The Atlanta (Georgia) Campaign.
No. 268.--Report of Col. James Wood, jr., One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry, commanding Third Brigade.
HDQRS. THIRD BRIG., THIRD DIV., 20TH CORPS,
Atlanta, Ga., September 23, 1864.
I have the honor to submit
the following report of the operations of the brigade under my command
since the 1st day of May last:
On the evening of that day I received orders to march at 6 o'clock the following morning. At the hour named we broke our winter camp in Lookout Valley and took up our line of march on the Chattanooga road, following the First Brigade of this division. After passing around the foot of Lookout Mountain we left Chattanooga on the left, passed through Rossville, and reached Gordon's Mills at about 3.30 p.m., when we encamped for the night, having marched the distance of fifteen miles. On the 3d of May we occupied substantially the same position taken the previous afternoon. A slight change was made for the purpose of getting more favorable ground on which to encamp. On the 4th, at 6.30 a.m., the brigade marched from Gordon's Mills to Pleasant Grove Church, near Taylor's Ridge, and took a position, formed in two lines, deployed on the right of the division, near the East Chickamauga Creek. The distance marched was eleven miles. The brigade occupied this position until the morning of the 6th. During the time a substantial bridge for infantry was built across the creek by the brigade pioneers. On the 6th the brigade marched at 5 a.m. from Pleasant Grove Church to Leet's Tannery, on Pea Vine Creek, a distance of six and a half miles, and took up a position in our lines deployed, with one regiment in reserve, which position the brigade occupied until next morning. On the 7th, at 5 a.m., the brigade marched from Leet's, through Gordon's Gap, passing Gordon's Springs, to Woods' Store, on the road leading to Buzzard Roost Gap, a distance of fifteen and a half miles. Here the brigade was put in position in a single deployed line. The Thirty-third Massachusetts was detached from the brigade, in pursuance of orders received from division headquarters, and directed to report to Colonel Ross, commanding Second Brigade, who occupied the crest of a hill about one mile in advance of this brigade. On the morning of the 8th I received from division headquarters an order, of which the following is a copy:
The major-general directs
that, in compliance with the inclosed order, you move your brigade out
in front of Colonel Ross' position and make a reconnaissance toward the
enemy's position at Buzzard Roost. Guard well your flanks; keep a strong
line of skirmishers well advanced; don't attack him in his intrenchments,
if you should find such to be the case. If you can draw him on to Colonel
Ross' position, should he follow you, do so. If he has abandoned Buzzard
Roost and you get possession, look well to your right. The general will
be at Colonel Roes' on the ridge.
Very respectfully, &c.,
Which was accompanied by instructions directing the manner in which the reconnaissance was to be made. In pursuance of the order I immediately got my command under arms and took up the line of march for Buzzard Roost Gap. After passing the Second Brigade (Colonel Ross), encamped on the crest of a hill a short distance east of Woods Store, I threw forward an advance guard and ordered them deployed as skirmishers; at the same time I covered the flanks of the column with a line of flankers. In this way the column advanced toward Buzzard Roost Gap. When about two miles from the gap, the skirmishers in front of the column came in contact with and crossed the advanced skirmish line of Carlin's brigade, of Johnson's division, of the Fourteenth Corps. The brigade was in position about 100 yards in the rear of this skirmish line and covered all the approaches to Buzzard Roost Gap from the west. I was informed by a major in charge of the skirmish line of this brigade that he had advanced his skirmish line close up to the enemy's works in the gap; that the enemy occupied the gap in force; that he made a demonstration to attack the skirmish line so advanced; whereupon the major, in pursuance of instructions, withdrew his line to the position he then occupied. As this condition of affairs was not contemplated by the orders and instructions I was ordered to make, I thought it advisable to communicate with Major-General Butterfield, who was in the rear of my column. Accordingly I halted the column and sent a staff officer to Major-General Butterfield, with instructions to advise him of the information I had received and receive his orders. Major-General Butterfield immediately rode up to the front of the column and, as I understood, had an interview with same major referred to above from Carlin's brigade, and received the same information. Major-General Butterfield, however, ordered me to proceed with the reconnaissance and to feel the enemy. I therefore ordered four companies forward and deployed them as skirmishers, and threw out a line of pickets to protect my right flank. I also ordered the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry to deploy in line of battle and to advance with and to support the skirmishers. The balance of the brigade was placed in position behind the crest of a hill in the front, and to the foot of which the skirmishers were deployed. The ground between the position occupied by the brigade and the valley into which Buzzard Roost Gap debouches toward the west was a series of hills running nearly parallel to the valley. In front of the right of my line, and bounding the valley on the east and the gap on the south, is Rocky Face Mountain, at the foot of which, and running nearly across the west entrance of the gap, where it sweeps round and runs through the gap, is Mill Creek, a stream with soft, muddy banks and bottom, not easily fordable. On the east side of the creek, and leaving but a narrow space between its east bank, is a high bank or bluff, which seems to be a spur of Rocky Face Mountain and with which it is connected, making, however, quite a depression between the highest part of the bluff and the mountain. The distance from this high point of the bluff and mountain in which the depression occurs is perhaps 150 yards. From the high part of the bluff along the curve of the creek to the north there is an easy descent until it is lost in the bottom land of the creek where it sweeps round to flow through the gap. Here also the railroad coming from Tunnel Hill sweeps round the hills from the south side of Buzzard Roost Gap and passes over the creek through the gap. From the crest of the bluff and the section of Rocky Face Mountain with which it is connected the ground descends quite rapidly to the east. From this crest the enemy's works for the protection of the gap are visible along the crest, and stretching across the gap the enemy had a line of skirmishers. By the direction of Major-General Butterfield, under whose personal supervision all the movements of my brigade were made, the line of skirmishers, increased and strengthened from time to time by re-enforcements from the line, was pushed forward until they occupied the crest of the bluff and the declivity between it and Rocky Face Mountain, and the base of the mountain as high as the highest part of the bluff. It was necessary to cross Mill Creek and ascend the almost perpendicular side of the bluff, the crest of which was held by the rebel sharpshooters. Two companies of skirmishers from the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry, commanded by Captains Boalt and Osborn, were ordered to take the crest. Promptly and steadily they climbed the side of the bluff in the face of a continued fire from the enemy's skirmishers, drove them from and occupied the crest. The conduct of Captains Boalt and Osborn and the men of their commands on this occasion, the coolness and bravery displayed by them, is deserving of the highest praise and reflects credit upon the gallant regiment of which they form a part. As soon as the crest was gained the skirmish line at that point was strengthened by three companies from the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry. Four companies of the Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteers held the low ground on the left between the creek and the railroad. On the right two companies from the Twenty-sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry were thrown across the creek, which at that point was deep, and which they crossed on a tree fallen across it, and were deployed as skirmishers and ordered to ascend to the crest which formed the depression between the bluff and Rocky Face Mountain, and which connected the two. This order was executed in a satisfactory manner. The enemy made but a feeble resistance to our advance. The enemy showed no disposition to attack. We had felt his position, discovered the nature, extent, and character of his works, and the object of the reconnaissance seemed to be accomplished. The day was drawing to a close, and I was ordered by Major-General Butterfield as soon as it was dark to withdraw my skirmishers and with my command return to the camp I had left in the morning. I advanced the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York to cover the movement of withdrawing the skirmishers, and was making dispositions to execute the order of the major-general commanding, who had at that time left the field, when I received the following order:
HEADQUARTERS TWENTIETH CORPS,
May 9, 1864.
The major-general commanding
directs that you hold yourself in readiness to comply with the following
dispatch just received from department headquarters:
"General Howard's and General Palmer's skirmishers will be advanced early to-morrow morning (9th instant). The major-general commanding desires that you order Butterfield's skirmishers to co-operate with General Palmer's as the latter sweep along the side of the ridge, by advancing over the ground which lies directly in front of them.
W. D. WHIPPLE,
Brigadier-General and Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS THIRD DIVISION, TWENTIETH CORPS.
The major-general commanding directs that Colonel Wood comply with the requirements of the within.
I immediately countermanded the order to withdraw the skirmishers, and directed them, as well as the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteer Infantry, to hold the position they then occupied for the night, and that scouts be sent forward from the skirmish line to reconnoiter and obtain, if possible, the information desired by the major-general commanding the Department of the Cumberland. As the enemy kept persistently concealed behind his works, nothing could be discovered, except that his position was very strong, if not impregnable, and that an attempt to dislodge him by a direct attack could not be expected to succeed. As I had done all in my power to comply with the instructions last received, and as night and darkness had now come upon us, the operations of the day closed. The Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry had marched for their camp under the order received from Major-General Butterfield before the last order above set forth had been promulgated. After dark the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry and Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry followed, leaving the skirmishers detailed from these regiments in the position they occupied during the day. The Twenty-sixth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, which had been held in reserve in this position first taken up, was permitted to bivouac for the night, as it was amply protected by the Fourteenth Army Corps, being connected with it and covered in front by the pickets of that corps. After these dispositions were made an order was received from the major-general commanding the division to withdraw the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Regiment and the skirmishers entirely out of the gap and the valley in front of it and bivouac them in a secure position on the hill. This order was complied with, and as Brigadier-Gen-eral Carlin had advanced his brigade and his picket-line it brought them within his lines. This finished the operations of the day, and I returned to my headquarters at Woods' Store. On the morning of the 9th I received the following orders:
Commanding Brigade :
The following instructions have just been received:
Push your reconnaissance as far as possible to-night, and endeavor to find out if the enemy is at Buzzard Roost in force. Communicate results.
Major-General Hooker directs that the force here act in accordance with the above. You will be governed by these instructions and report to General Thomas direct, as well as to me.
I immediately directed
the officer in charge of the skirmishers (Major Higgins, of the Seventy-third
Ohio) to see that the order was complied with. Subsequently and on the
same morning I received orders to continue the reconnaissance commenced
the day before. In compliance therewith, I immediately concentrated my
brigade in the valley in front of the gap. The skirmishers again took the
position from which they were withdrawn the night before, being compelled
the second time to drive the enemy's skirmishers therefrom. The One hundred
and thirty-sixth New York and Twenty-sixth
Wisconsin Volunteers were deployed in line of battle in front of the
bluff. The Fifty-fifth Ohio was ordered to cross the creek and hold the
bluff which had been taken by the skirmishers. I was ordered by Major-General
B[utterfield] to throw a regiment across the creek near the foot of the
Rocky Face Mountain and to advance it to the crest of the spur that connected
the bluff with the mountain. To comply with the order it became necessary
to build a bridge across the Mill Creek. This was done with commendable
dispatch by the division pioneers. I ordered across the Seventy-third Ohio
Volunteers and it pushed forward promptly to fulfill the order of the division
commander. In the mean time the enemy had planted a section of artillery
on the crest of Rocky Face Mountain, and opened with grape and canister
on the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteers. That regiment was promptly withdrawn
out of range to the west side of the creek at the foot of the bluff. The
enemy's guns, however, were very soon silenced by some artillery of the
Fourteenth Corps. By direction of Major-General Butterfield, I ordered
the Thirty-third Massachusetts, which up to this time had been held in
reserve, to cross the creek, and, if possible, to gain the crest of Rocky
Face Mountain. To cover the operations of the two regiments across the
creek the Twenty-sixth Wisconsin and One hundred and thirty-sixth New York
were moved to the right and deployed on the west side of the creek in the
rear of Seventy-third Ohio and Thirty-third Massachusetts. While these
last-named regiments were engaged in carrying out the order they had received,
the skirmishers of the Seventy-third Ohio having gained the crest of the
spur, so as to overlook the enemy's works in the gap, and the skirmishers
of the Thirty-third Massachusetts having ascended more than half way to
the crest of Rocky Face Mountain, I received an order that my brigade would
be relieved by Carlin's brigade, of the Fourteenth Corps. After having
returned, I marched my brigade to the Presbyterian Church on the road from
Woods' Store to Buzzard Roost Gap and encamped. This ended the operations
of my brigade in connection with the reconnaissance into Buzzard Roost
Gap. On Wednesday, the 11th, at 4 a.m., the brigade marched from its position
near Woods' Store, to which place it had returned after the reconnaissance
to Snake Creek Gap and about half way through the gap, arriving at 12 m.,
a distance of fourteen miles. Here I was ordered to put the brigade into
camp, and to widen and put in good condition that part of the road through
the gap between where General Williams, of the First Division, was encamped
and the camp of my brigade, to make the road of sufficient capacity to
allow two wagon trains and a column of infantry to march abreast. I divided
the work into as many sections as I had regiments, and as soon as the tools
were provided put as many men on the road as could be advantageously employed.
By night-fall I had that portion of the road apportioned to my brigade
completed as ordered. On the 12th, at 10 a.m., the brigade broke camp and
marched through the gap, a distance of four miles, and took up position
in a single deployed line in rear of the Fifteenth Army Corps.
On the 13th, at -- a.m., pursuant to orders, the brigade marched with the army of which it formed a part upon the enemy at Resaca. The brigade formed its front line of battle about 2 p.m. at right angles to the line formed in the crest of a hill running east and west by the Second Brigade, and perpendicular to and crossing the road leading from Tilton to Rome. While in this position, the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York was, by an order delivered by Major-General Hooker in person, detached from the line and ordered to make a reconnaissance toward the enemy's lines and ascertain whether there was a road by which artillery could be placed in position on a hill in our front and near the enemy. The reconnaissance was made as directed, and on its return Lieutenant-Colonel Faulkner, the commanding officer of the regiment, reported that the hill in question was in the possession of the troops of the Fifteenth Army Corps. The brigade, by order, then changed its position to the rear of the left of the Fifteenth Corps, where it was held in reserve in column by division. After sundown I was ordered to relieve Carlin's brigade, of the Fourteenth Corps, then in position in two lines on the crest of a wooded hill in our front, connecting on its right with the Fifteenth Corps. Owing to the woods and the darkness the task was not an easy one, but it was accomplished with reasonable promptness. The brigade made its connections with the Fifteenth Army Corps on the right and Ward's brigade of this division on the left and bivouacked for the night. In front of us was a valley through which ran a creek. On the opposite side of the valley and distant about 600 yards was a chain of hills occupied by the enemy. These hills he was diligently engaged in fortifying during the night. On the morning of the 14th the enemy's skirmishers and sharpshooters opened fire upon our skirmish line, but owing to the long range, our casualties were not numerous. The brigade held the position during the day. After dark of this day I was ordered to protect the men by works in their front to be made of logs and earth, and to be thrown up with as little noise as possible, so as not to attract the enemy's attention. The men immediately commenced the work, but before it was completed, and at about 12 o'clock of the night, the brigade was relieved by General Morgan's brigade, of the Fourteenth Corps. Upon being relieved, the brigade marched to the open field in the rear of the position it occupied and bivouacked till morning. On the morning of the 15th, at daylight, the brigade, with the division of which it forms a part, marched to the Dalton and Resaca road, on the extreme left of our army. Here I received the following order from Major-General Butterfield, commanding the division:
The division will move to attack the enemy's line. The column of attack will be formed by General Ward's brigade, Colonel Coburn supporting on his right, Colonel Wood on his left. General Ward will form his column by regiment front and push a bold and vigorous attack with bayonets, a strong line of skirmishers in front. Colonel Coburn will form on his right and rear in echelon with two lines. Colonel Wood will form on General Ward's left and rear in echelon and support, and will guard his left flank and support his assault. General Ward's column will keep well to the right of the Dalton road.
I moved my brigade forward
to the hill referred to and placed it in the formation directed. Before
the attack was ordered Major Tremain, acting aide-de-camp on Major-General
Butterfield's staff, came to me and said that the situation of the ground
was somewhat different from what it was understood to be at the time the
written orders were issued; that instead of acting as a support to General
Ward it was assigned to me to assault and take the hill then in my front,
and that the manner of doing it and the formation of the brigade was left
to my own judgment; that General Butterfield desired the attack to be made
at once, as General Ward was ready to advance. This was to me very embarrassing.
I had not reconnoitered the ground. Most of it was covered with a dense
forest. I knew nothing of the strength of the enemy, his position, or the
situation of his works in front. I rode forward and made a hurried and
imperfect reconnaissance. It seemed to me that I was too far to the right.
I therefore moved my right regiment by the left flank to the left and changed
its front by a half wheel to the left. I changed the formation of the brigade
from one line in echelon to two lines, putting three regiments in the front
line and two in the second, throwing out in front a strong line of skirmishers.
This formation, made in a very hurried manner, being completed, I gave
the order to advance. Promptly and regularly the men moved up the hill
and drove the enemy from the crest in the most gallant manner. When about
two-thirds of the way the left of the line, in passing out the woods into
an open space, encountered a galling cross-fire from the left, and which
seemed to come from the enemy posted in a piece of woods to the left and
in front of me. Not knowing what, if any, disposition had been made to
protect our left flank, and fearing a flank movement from the enemy, I
changed the front of the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry so as to
meet the threatened danger. A few well-directed volleys from this regiment
seemed to silence the firing from the woods. Soon afterward I saw troops
of the First Division (Brigadier-General Williams) going into position
on my left, which removed all fear of a flank attack. I then ordered the
Seventy-third Ohio to resume its original front and move forward on a line
with the other part of the brigade on the crest of the hill. The hill was
divided by an indentation in its top, running in the same direction with
the line of battle, in two crests. In my front the crest first reached
in a measure overlooked and commanded the second, but my order was to occupy
the advanced crest. The order was obeyed, although the position of the
men was such that they were under fire of the enemy in their works. As
I anticipated before the attack began, my right regiment was too far to
the right, as there was some mistake or misunderstanding on the part of
the Second Brigade. I understood that the Second Brigade was to support
the First Brigade on the right, but before the crest of the hill was half
gained the regiments of the Second Brigade, after firing a volley into
the First Brigade, were found on its left in no little confusion. The men
ran over and through the right of my line, mingling with the right regiment
and creating so much confusion as to render the regiment (Twenty-sixth
Wisconsin) almost unserviceable, as well as causing great hindrance to
the regiment next to it (Thirty-third Massachusetts). Major Winkler, with
commendable skill and ability, with no little difficulty extricated his
men from the confused mass into which they had become involved and brought
them again reformed into line. This hill being a position of much importance
to the enemy, it was not to be supposed that he would yield it without
a struggle or without making an effort to retake it after being driven
off. Accordingly, regimental commanders were cautioned that they might
expect to be in turn attacked, but that they must hold the position at
all hazards. The expectation seemed to be well founded, for the enemy made
two furious assaults upon my line, but was gallantly and successfully repulsed.
As the second attack seemed to be a very determined one, and as my men were much exhausted, I sent word for re-enforcements. I knew that General Geary with his division was in my rear and with a considerable force near the crest of the hill. I went to him in person for aid. I failed to obtain it, and the second and last attack on my line was successfully repulsed before re-enforcements reached me. The day was now far spent, my men were exhausted: the casualties had been large. At my request Major-General Hooker ordered my brigade relieved by troops from the Second Division. After being relieved, I marched the brigade into the valley on the Dalton road, where it bivouacked for the night. The conduct of the entire command was such as to meet my highest commendation. Both officers and men displayed praiseworthy gallantry and bravery. I saw no shirking, no unnecessary straggling. The wounded, those who were able, took care of themselves, and those who were not lay upon the ground until they were removed by the ambulances. My thanks are especially due to Lieutenant-Colonel Faulkner, of One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers, and to Major Hurst, Seventy-third Ohio, for the distinguished gallantry exhibited by them in this engagement, and for the marked skill and ability with which they handled their respective commands. I commend them and their conduct to the favorable consideration of those whose duty it is and whose pleasure it may be to reward those who have rendered important service on the field of battle. Early in the engagement Major Robbins, of the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteer Infantry, fell mortally wounded. Soon after Captain Peck, of the same regiment, was killed, and in the last attempt of the enemy to dislodge us from the hill Colonel Gambee, the worthy and able commander of the same regiment, fell while cheering and encouraging his men to hold the ground. I desire to pay a passing tribute to the worthy ability and high character of these officers. By their fall the country and the service have suffered an irreparable loss. It is with a real sense of loss that I refer to the fall of the lamented Colonel Gambee, a gentleman by instinct, possessed of a high sense of honor. Of warm social qualities he attached himself as a friend to all with whom he associated. Entering the service as a captain in the line, he was for his peculiar fitness promoted to the command of the regiment. Though a strict disciplinarian, he had the confidence, the respect, the love of the officers and men of his command. As second in command of the brigade, I relied on his good judgment and sound sense to aid me in the discharge of the arduous and important duties of command. He regarded with abhorrence the rebellion which threatened to overturn our National Government and its guilty abettors, and he entered the military service not from choice, but from a sense of duty and the dictates of pure patriotism. Upon the altar of his country he has sacrificed his life and sealed his principles with his blood. In the engagement in which he lost his life he bore himself with distinguished gallantry, and by his example and the able manner in which he handled his regiment contributed materially to the successful result of the attack. May his name be cherished and his memory preserved so long as bravery, loyalty, and patriotism are regarded as virtues among men. On Monday, the 16th, the brigade marched through Resaca (the enemy having retreated during the night) toward Field's Mill, on the Oos-tenaula River, which river was crossed by means of a rope ferry. The brigade crossed the river and got into position on the other side at about 11.30 p.m., having marched the distance of sixteen miles. The crossing occupied about two hours. On the 17th, at about 2 p.m., the brigade marched from Field's Ferry toward Calhoun on the Cassville road and went into camp at about 9 p.m., having marched seventeen miles. On the 18th, at 5 a.m., took up the line of march toward Cassville. The road was obstructed by troops and trains; consequently we could move only by cutting a side road. This was being done under the direction of major-general commanding the division, when a side road was struck, on which the brigade marched. Late in the afternoon the brigade emerged on the Cassville road. It was soon discovered that the enemy in some force was in our immediate front. The One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers was then formed and deployed; skirmishers advanced for the purpose of ascertaining the strength of the enemy. In this way the brigade advanced about two miles, when our farther advance was obstructed by a line of rifle-pits and artillery. The brigade bivouacked on the plateau between Calhoun and Cassville, having marched seventeen and a half miles.
On the 19th, in the morning, I was ordered with my brigade to make a reconnaissance toward Two-Run Creek. My instructions were to march due south until I struck the creek. I deployed one regiment, the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry, and threw out skirmishers in advance. The balance of the regiment [brigade] was formed in two columns on the right and left of the regiment deployed. In this formation the brigade advanced. When within about half a mile from the creek, it was discovered that the enemy in force was in dangerous proximity on our left flank. Being isolated from the corps to which the brigade belonged, and not being supported on the right by the Second Division and on the left by the First Division, as it was understood we would be, and being unable to make connection with either of these divisions, although they were ordered to march at the same time with our division, it became necessary to withdraw the reconnaissance and take up a defensive position until supported by the two divisions above referred to. Accordingly, under orders from the major-general commanding the division, I withdrew hence about 1,000 yards from my most advanced position and threw up a slight protection of boards and rails, the enemy having shown no disposition to attack. After holding this position about two hours it was ascertained that the First and Second Divisions had advanced in supporting distances on our right and left. The brigade then moved out toward the enemy in the direction of Cassville. The march was in column by company. We soon came upon the enemy posted behind Two-Run Creek, protected by hastily constructed works. As the position of the enemy was such as to expose his flank, he beat a hasty retreat. To protect the artillery of the division, which was in position on a hill to my left, I deployed the brigade on the northerly bank of the creek, which position I occupied until an advance of the whole line was made, in which this brigade took a part. Moving across the creek, the brigade was formed in two lines, with one regiment in advance supporting the skirmish line, connecting with the First Division on the left and with the Second Brigade of this division to the right. The brigade, as a part of the general line, advanced on Cassville, then occupied by the enemy, through a dense piece of wood. Considering the nature of the ground over which it passed, I regard this advance as highly creditable to the officers and men of the brigade. After advancing to the heights north of Cassville, it was found that the enemy had retreated from that place behind formidable works on the opposite heights. The day being now far spent (it being after sundown), pursuant to orders, I marched my brigade back to the northerly side of Two-Run Creek and encamped for the night. On the 20th, 21st, and 22d the brigade remained in camp to rest and recover from the exhaustion of the campaign. On the 23d the brigade marched from its camp near Cassville to Euharlee, on the south side of Etowah River; distance, sixteen miles. On the 24th the brigade marched from Euharlee to Burnt Hickory; distance, eighteen miles. On the 25th the brigade marched from Burnt Hickory under orders to take a formation with the division on the Dallas and Marietta road. The march of the brigade was much retarded and obstructed by McCook's cavalry, which was ordered to march a part of the way on the same road with this brigade. But as cavalry is supposed to move with more celerity than infantry, it was expected that it would be out of the way before the road was required for infantry. At about 3 p.m. the brigade came upon the road leading from ----- to ----, when it became known that the Second Division (General Geary) had passed on the same road, and a short distance in advance had had a sharp encounter with the enemy, and that the enemy was prepared to dispute our farther progress. The Twentieth Corps was ordered to make an attack and drive the enemy away. This brigade was first ordered to support the First Division (General Williams) in the attack, and to that end was formed in line of battle by battalion in mass, with direction to take deploying intervals as it advanced. Before I had advanced far I was ordered to move my brigade to the east side of the road and move to the attack, connecting with Williams' left. As soon as two regiments had crossed--the Fifty-fifth Ohio and One hundred and thirty-sixth New York in the front line, and the Seventy-third Ohio and Twenty-sixth Wisconsin in the second line--I was ordered to advance, keeping the road on my right. On communicating to Major-General Butterfield the fact that the Thirty-third Massachusetts, forming a part of my first line, had not crossed the road, he directed me to place it behind the line in reserve. As I was advancing in this position the enemy opened a sharp musketry fire on my left flank. As the fire developed a considerable force on my flank, I faced the Thirty-third Massachusetts in the direction of the fire and changed the front of the Seventy-third Ohio in the same direction, and advanced on that position of the enemy. In this way I advanced as long as it was light enough to see, swinging round my left so as not to lose connection with the other regiments of the brigade. A deep ravine, a creek, and a morass separated me from the forces that attacked my left. My left advanced to this ravine and creek, and my right and center as far as First Division advanced. With the close of the day a rain-storm and intense darkness set in, which put a stop to operations on both sides. I held the position to which we were advanced until 12 o'clock at night, when, in pursuance of orders from division headquarters, I marched the brigade back on the road to the rear of the First Division and bivouacked for the night. On the 27th of May my brigade was moved to the extreme right and rear of the corps and bivouacked in column by battalion, and on the 28th relieved General Ward's brigade, of this division, in the front line; intrenched on the extreme right of the Twentieth Army Corps, where it remained until the 1st of June.
On the 1st of June last this brigade was in line of battle near New Hope Church, behind a line of breast-works, forming a second line, the first line of which was composed of the Second Brigade of this division. At 12 o'clock of that day the brigade was relieved by a brigade of the Fifteenth Corps, Army of the Tennessee, and marched about five miles toward the left flank of the army and encamped on the left of the First Division. At 12 o'clock on the 2d of June the brigade broke camp and marched about two miles farther to the left, and bivouacked in line of battle by battalions in mass in two lines in support of the Twenty-third Corps, which position was occupied until 3 o'clock on the following day, when the brigade moved still farther to the left and bivouacked on the road leading to McLean's house, in rear and support of Hovey's brigade, of Twenty-third Corps, in line of battle deployed in two lines. The brigade occupied this position until the morning of the 6th of June, when it marched on the Acworth road about two miles, where it formed a line of battle near Widow Hull's, with its right resting on the Sandtown road. A strong and substantial line of breast-works, extending the whole front of the brigade deployed in one line, was here constructed. The brigade occupied this position unmolested until the 15th day of June. At 2 o'clock on that day the brigade broke camp and marched on the Sandtown road in pursuit of the enemy, he having retreated from his intrenched position. After marching about a mile a line of battle was formed, this brigade forming the third line, in rear of the First and Second Brigades. The enemy's pickets were in our front, and it was ascertained that he had taken up a new position, extending across the Sandtown road, on which we were marching. A reconnaissance was ordered to be made for the purpose of developing his line and strength. The division moved forward in line of battle, with its right resting on the Sand-town road, this brigade acting as support to the First Brigade, which advanced on the enemy's lines. The enemy was discovered in a strongly intrenched position, with a battery of artillery resting upon and covering the approach on the Sandtown road. After advancing to within about 100 yards of the enemy's works the brigade bivouacked for the night. This position was held until the 17th of June. On the night of the 16th of June the enemy abandoned his position and retreated, and at 9 o'clock the following day this brigade marched in pursuit. The enemy was soon discovered occupying a new position near Noyes' Creek. This brigade and also the First Brigade of this division were held in reserve in rear of the new line of battle formed by the First Division, the Second Brigade of this division, and the Third of the Second Division, with orders to march to the support of any part of the line that might be attacked. The brigade occupied this position until Sunday, the 19th of June. On the night of the 18th of June the enemy again retreated toward Marietta, and took up a position on and covered by Kenesaw Mountain. On the 19th of June this brigade marched in pursuit of the enemy across Noyes' Creek on the Dallas and Marietta road. The farther progress being disputed by the enemy's pickets, I formed a line of battle on the right of the road and advanced the brigade formed in one line deployed. After encountering and pushing back to a considerable distance the enemy's skirmishers, the brigade was halted. This line was held until dark, when the brigade was withdrawn behind the Second Brigade, about 100 yards to the rear, where a line of breast-works had been erected. Here the brigade went into camp and occupied the position until the 22d of June. On the 20th of June, at 5 p.m., the brigade marched out of camp on the right of its position to support the First Division, which was about taking up a position to the right of and in advance of the position then occupied by the Third Division. The First Division got into position without being molested by the enemy, and this brigade, by order, returned to its camp.
On the 21st of June I received orders from Major-General Butterfield to make a reconnaissance with two regiments to the right, in front of our position. I accordingly ordered the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York and Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteers, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Faulkner, to make the reconnaissance as ordered. I subsequently re-enforced him with the Seventy-third Ohio. The troops left camp at 11 a.m. and returned at 6 p.m., having accomplished the object of the reconnaissance. The enemy occupied the position on the crest of a hill about 500 yards in our front. I was ordered with my brigade to drive off the enemy and occupy this hill. Accordingly, on the 22d of June I moved my brigade forward and formed a line of battle in the edge of a piece of woods near some open ground which lay between the foot of the hill and the woods, in which the brigade was formed and about 100 yards distant from the hill. This open ground was swept by the enemy's skirmishers. I threw out a strong line of skirmishers, and ordered forward the Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteers to support the skirmish line. In this formation the brigade advanced across the open ground in double-quick, pushed up the hill, which was occupied by the enemy's skirmish line, intrenched, drove the enemy from the hill, and occupied it, as ordered. The enemy occupied a strong position of another hill still in our front, in which position he had intrenched himself, and from which he kept up a galling and destructive fire on my line. With a great promptitude and dispatch the men in the face of this fire constructed a line of breast-works which covered them from the enemy's fire. The enemy made an ineffectual attempt to drive us from the hill; drove in our pickets, but was quickly repulsed by the line and retreated. At about 5 p.m. this brigade was relieved by a brigade from the Fourth Corps. After being relieved, the brigade marched to the right about two miles and took up a position in the rear and support of the First Division. On the 23d of June the division moved still farther to the right, to the Powder Springs road, and took up a position in a line of battle deployed, with its right resting on that road, this brigade forming a second line, of which the Second Brigade of this division formed the first. The brigade occupied this position till the 27th day of June. Before daylight on that day the brigade took the position in rear of its then position on the right of Knipe's brigade, of the First Division, with the right resting on the Powder Springs road. I should have said that the brigade constructed a line of breast-works covering its entire front while occupying the position which it took on the 23d. The brigade occupied this last position until evening of the 29th of June, when it relieved the front line, at first occupied by Second Brigade, and at that time by the First Brigade of this division. The brigade occupied this position until the 2d of July. On the night of the 1st of July the enemy retreated from Kenesaw Mountain and Marietta toward the Chattahoochee River. On the morning of the 2d this brigade marched in pursuit of the enemy on the Marietta road and toward that place. After marching about two miles I was ordered to change direction to the right, and to march south toward the Sandtown road. We came upon the enemy's skirmishers and found that he was occupying a new line of strongly intrenched works. After marching about two miles in the new direction we encamped on the right of the Second Division, on the west bank of Nickajack Creek, and occupied this position until the 4th day of July. On that day the brigade changed position to a new one about one mile and a half south. On going into this position the enemy was supposed to be seen in our front occupying a threatening position. In consequence thereof the brigade in a remarkably short space of time constructed a line of breast-works covering its entire front. It was subsequently ascertained that the troops seen in our front were a portion of our own army advancing on the enemy's line. On the night of the 4th of July the enemy again abandoned their works and retreated to the Chattahoochee River. On the morning of the 5th this brigade marched in pursuit of the enemy, but the advance was very slow, owing to the road being blocked by troops and trains. We crossed the Nickajack Creek and went into camp after dark on its west bank, about two miles from Chattahoochee River. On the 6th of July the brigade marched to a new position, on the east side of Nickajack Creek, in the same relative position to the Chattahoochee River, connecting with the Second Brigade on my right and First Brigade on my left. Here we went into camp and continued until the 17th day of July. At 3 o'clock of that day, in the afternoon, the brigade broke camp and commenced its march toward Chattahoochee River; crossed the river at Pace's Ferry, marched in a northeastern direction about three miles, and went into camp on the right of First Brigade, near Nancy's Creek.
On the 18th of July we marched toward Buck Head, having first made a reconnaissance to and across Nancy's Creek and ascertained that the enemy was not in any force at or near that creek. The brigade marched to the Dalton road in line of battle deployed, when it changed direction to the left and continued its advance on that road. Having ascertained that the Fourth Corps occupied Buck Head, the brigade formed its formation from line of battle deployed to column by companies, and continued its advance in that formation. The brigade reached Buck Head at about 5 p.m. and went into position to the left of the Buck Head road and south of the Decatur road in single line of battle deployed. This position the brigade occupied until morning of the 20th of July. On the morning of the 20th of July the brigade, with the division of which it forms apart, left its camp near Buck Head to cross Peach Tree Creek. The Second Division (Brigadier-General Geary) and a part or the whole of Major-General Newton's division, of the Fourth Corps, had crossed this creek the day previous and taken a position on the south bank, leaving a gap between the right of Newton's division and the left of Geary's to be filled by the Third Division. The crossing of the creek by this brigade and division was effected about 11 a.m. of the 20th without opposition. As soon as the brigade was across the creek, by order of division headquarters, I sent forward the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteer Infantry to act as skirmishers and to drive off the enemy's pickets and skirmishers, to enable the division to get into position. The regiment was sent to the right of the position the division was to occupy and deployed, and sent forward skirmishers which connected with Geary's division on the right and a regiment of the Second Brigade, deployed for the same purpose, on the left. On the south side of Peach Tree Creek is a piece of flat or bottom land extending from Geary's left to Newton's right and of an average width of 200 yards. From this bottom the ground rises somewhat abruptly into a bluff or ridge, more abruptly on the left than on the right. From the crest of this bluff or ridge the land descends to a ravine from which another ridge rises, which ridge seemed to be continuous, extending in front of the whole corps as well as Newton's division, of the Fourth Corps. As soon as the skirmishers were deployed they advanced and took possession of the front hill or ridge. Behind them and on the flat or bottom land the division was deployed into line of battle, the First Brigade on the right, connecting with Geary's division, the Second Brigade in the center, and the Third Brigade on the left, connecting with Newton's division, of the Fourth Corps. The first formation of the brigade was three regiments in front, viz, the Seventy-third Ohio, Twenty-sixth Wisconsin, and Twentieth Connecticut, in the order named from right to left. Thus formed, the brigade took position immediately in rear of and at the foot of the first bluff or ridge above alluded to, by which it was entirely covered. The One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers, it will be remembered, was on the right, to which place it was ordered to act as skirmishers. As soon as the brigade and division were in position at the foot of the ridge, inasmuch as the skirmishers of the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers were not in front of the brigade to which it belonged, I requested that that regiment might be relieved from the First Brigade. This was not effected until after the engagement which subsequently occurred; consequently, only the skirmishers of that regiment took part in it. After the formation of the brigade as above stated, I was ordered to put another regiment in reserve or in the second line, so that the brigade line of battle would be only two regiments front. I ordered the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry to take a position in rear of the Twenty-sixth Wisconsin, and connect on the left with the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteers, also in reserve. After this formation was made, orders were received to have the men stack arms and make themselves as comfortable as possible; that a farther advance was not at that time necessary. The skirmish line, however, advanced from the front ridge to the second, and took position on its crest. The brigade quietly occupied the position then taken, not anticipating a conflict with the enemy, when, at about 3 p.m., it was announced that the enemy in force was advancing upon us. The rapid discharge of musketry on our left in front of Newton's division, the rapid retreat to the rear of noncombatants, ambulances, &c., of that division, the activity of our own skirmish line, indicated that the announcement was true. I immediately ordered my brigade to advance to meet and resist the threatened attack of the enemy. The skirmish line held out to the last, and bravely fought the enemy and checked his advance. The other brigades of the division advanced at the same time. Over the crest of the hill, down into the ravine on the other side, the line advanced, and as it emerged from a fringe of trees or bushes, with which the bottom of the valley or ravine was lined, it met the enemy. Coolly and deliberately the men poured into their line a well-directed, withering, and destructive fire, which covered the ground with the dead and wounded. This checked his advance and caused him to recoil. The line centering its fire charged up the hill, gained the crest, and drove the enemy into the valley on the other side. The Twentieth Connecticut Volunteers on the left, by some misapprehension, halted before reaching the crest of the second hill, its commander being erroneously ordered to halt and cease firing, as our skirmishers were still in front. This misapprehension and error was soon rectified, and the regiment advanced to the crest just as a body of the enemy, formed in double column, was about to take advantage of the apparent gap in the line to attack Newton's division on its right flank. A well directed and murderous volley from the Twentieth Connecticut poured into this column threw it into confusion, and it broke and fled. As there seemed to be some indication that the troops of the Fourth Corps, on our immediate left, were being driven by the enemy, I held the Fifty-fifth Ohio and Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry in reserve to protect my left flank, in case it should be exposed. Happily, the brigade on my left held its ground and repulsed the enemy. As soon as I became satisfied that my flank would not be turned, I ordered forward the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteers to relieve the Twenty-sixth Wisconsin, which was nearly exhausted by the extreme heat of the day and the severe fighting. The men had expended all their ammunition and supplied themselves from the cartridge-boxes of the dead and wounded rebels. On being relieved, the regiment fell back about fifty yards to the rear, where it took position in line of battle, ready to spring to their guns in case of necessity. I ordered the Fifty-fifth Ohio to re-enforce the line on the left, as there was a gap on the left of the Twentieth Connecticut, between it and the right of the Fourth Corps. The commanding officer of the Fifty-fifth Ohio very properly and judiciously with his regiment filled that gap. On the top of the ridge now occupied by the brigade line of battle was a well-traveled highway, on the south side of which was an ordinary fence of rails, partly standing and partly thrown down. The men took position behind this fence and kept a constant and continuous fire upon the enemy. The enemy made one or two ineffectual attempts to renew the attack, but his troops would not or could not withstand the destructive fire which ours kept up upon them from our line, and he gave up the contest and retreated behind his strong and well-protected line of earth-works. This ended this severely contested engagement. To us it was a brilliant feat of arms. We encountered the enemy in superior numbers in the open field. We met his offensive attack with an offensive -turn; his charge with a countercharge. The victory was complete and decisive. He left his dead and wounded on the field and in our possession. The Twenty-sixth Wisconsin captured a stand of colors, and the skirmishers of the One hundred and thirty-sixth New York a battle-flag. This brigade buried the bodies of 38 dead rebels found behind and near our advanced line of battle, among whom was 1 colonel (Drake, of Thirty-third Mississippi); 5 line officers captured, as many more severely wounded, 6 swords, and many stand of small-arms, of which no account was kept, denote the captures made by this and other brigades of this division. Of course such a victory could not be obtained without the sacrifice of valuable lives and the shedding of precious blood, although our loss is slight in comparison with the loss and havoc that were inflicted on the rebels. The men and officers of the brigade sustained their well-earned reputation for bravery and gallantry. Though the attack came upon them unexpectedly, they met it with cool deter-ruination and unflinching courage. Where all behaved well it may be regarded as invidious to call attention to individuals, yet it seems to me that I cannot discharge my whole duty in this respect without pointing out for special commendation the conduct of the Twenty-sixth Wisconsin volunteer Infantry and its brave and able commander. The position of this regiment in the line was such that the brunt of the attack on this brigade fell upon it. The brave, skillful, and determined manner in which it met this attack, rolled back the onset, pressed forward in a countercharge, and drove back the enemy, could not be excelled by the troops in this or any other army, and is worthy of the highest commendation and praise. It is to be hoped that such conduct will be held up as an example for others, and will meet its appropriate reward. On the 21st of July the brigade held the ground and position occupied by it at the close of the battle of the 20th. On the night of that day the enemy retreated and withdrew behind their works, which covered and protected the city of Atlanta.
On the morning of the 22d this brigade again marched in pursuit of the enemy and advanced within two miles of the center of the city of Atlanta. Here the brigade went into position in line of battle deployed in two lines on the right of and connecting with the Second Division on our right, and constructed a line of breastworks covering its entire front. The enemy opened upon us with his artillery from forts and works in Atlanta, but did no damage. On the 23d I was ordered to take a position on the right of the First Division, for the purpose of strengthening and re-enforcing the brigade that held the Marietta road and the railroad. Accordingly, I marched my brigade to the position designated, relieved that part of Ruger's brigade, of First Division, that held the line between the Marietta road and the railroad, and held and occupied that part of the line with my brigade, deployed in line of battle in two lines, protected by breast-works and by abatis and other obstructions in the front. On the 24th of July I changed the line by throwing the left forward about eighty yards, so as to make the front line a straight line, and constructed a new line of breastworks extending from the left of the right regiment to the left of the line. This work was constructed during the night of Saturday, the 23d, and occupied by the troops at daylight the next morning. The brigade occupied this position until the 30th of July, the only change being that on the evening of the 26th of July this brigade was relieved from the front line by Ruger's brigade, of First Division, and took a position on the second line, covered and protected by breast-works. On the 30th of July the brigade was ordered to march to the right and support, in connection with the division, Davis' division, of the Fourteenth Corps, in a reconnaissance toward East Point. Accordingly, the brigade marched to the right flank of the army and took up a position on the right of the Fifteenth Corps. The brigade continued on the right of the army until the 2d of August, when it returned and took position in line of battle on the right of the Second Brigade of the division and connecting with the Sixteenth Corps on the right, in advance of the position lately occupied by the Fourteenth Corps. Here the brigade constructed a line of breast-works, covering its entire front in a sufficient strength to resist artillery. This position was held until the morning of the 8th of August. On the 7th of August I received orders to advance the line and fortify it. This created a necessity for an entire new line of works, except the works in front of one regiment on the left. A brigade of the Fourteenth Corps, occupying a position in reserve to this brigade, was ordered to assist in constructing these works. The works were constructed on the night of the 7th, and were occupied by the brigade on the morning of the 8th. On Tuesday, the 9th, the right regiment of my brigade was relieved on the front line by a regiment of a brigade from the Fourteenth Corps, above alluded to. The regiment so relieved was held in reserve. The Sixteenth Corps having advanced their line, I was ordered to advance by a detail from the three brigades of the division. The works were so far completed that on the evening of the 10th I moved the brigade into the new line, and the works were completed by the regiments which lay behind them. This position was occupied by the brigade, one regiment in reserve, until the 13th of August.
On the 11th of August I received an order still farther to advance my line to connect on the left with the Second Brigade, which also took an advanced position, and to construct a new line of breastworks to cover this advance. Accordingly, working parties were detailed, the work was constructed as ordered, and the brigade moved into the new line on the morning of the 13th. This new position was occupied by the brigade until the evening of the 25th of August. On the evening of the 24th orders were received that this brigade and the Second Brigade of this division would march on the evening of the 25th to Turner's Ferry, on the Chattahoochee, to hold and cover the ferry, pending the contemplated movement of the army to the right and rear of Atlanta, with the view of cutting the Macon railroad, on which the enemy relied for the transportation of his supplies. I was also ordered to send one regiment to Turner's Ferry on the morning of the 25th to construct a line of breast-works to protect the brigade when it should take possession there. Accordingly, on the morning of the 25th, the Twentieth Connecticut Volunteer Infantry was dispatched to Turner's Ferry for the purpose indicated, with instructions to comply with the order. At 9 p.m. of the 25th the brigade was withdrawn from behind the line of works, marched across Proctor's Creek on the Turner's Ferry road, where it was massed and halted to await the movement of a certain part of the Fourth Corps. At 2 a.m. of the 26th the brigade resumed its march toward Turner's Ferry, at which point it arrived at 5 a.m.; went into position in line of battle; deployed in single line on the left of Second Brigade, its right resting on the Turner's Ferry road and its left on the Chattahoochee River. As soon as it was in position the brigade commenced vigorous work to construct the line of defenses by throwing up breastworks, making abatis, cutting down trees for obstructions, and planting other obstacles to the approach of the enemy. On the 27th day of August, and before the defenses were fully completed, the enemy made a demonstration upon us by a force consisting of two brigades of infantry and a battery of four pieces of artillery, under Brigadier-General [Major-General] French. He opened upon us a very rapid discharge of artillery, drove in our pickets by an attack of his infantry, but as soon as he discovered the strength of our position and received one or two rounds from a section of a battery, within range of which he had planted his artillery, he discontinued his attack, and retreated from our position. Our casualties were 2 men killed, 1 wounded, and 2 missing. This position was held without further molestation from the enemy until the 2d of September. On the morning of the 2d of September a detachment of 400 men was sent from this brigade to join a similar detachment from the Second Brigade, for the purpose of making a reconnaissance toward Atlanta. The reconnaissance was made, and it was ascertained that the enemy on the night of the 1st of September, after destroying his ordnance stores and other stores then in the city, had evacuated the city and retreated southward. The city was formally surrendered by the mayor and common council, and taken possession of by the troops composing the reconnoitering party. That portion of the brigade which formed the detachment detailed for the reconnaissance aid not return to Turner's Ferry, but was held in the city for its protection. I was ordered to take the balance of my brigade and join that portion of it already in the city. On the 4th of September I moved my headquarters to the city of Atlanta and the balance of the brigade, with brigade train, marched into the city, joined that portion already there, and took a position in the south part thereof, behind the works built and abandoned by the rebels.
This brigade left Lookout Valley on the 2d of May, 1864, numbering 1,900 officers and men. During the latter part of May the Twentieth Connecticut Volunteers joined the brigade with 400 men. This regiment and the Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteers have been detached, one or the other of them, since the latter part of May, and not under fire. The casualty reports have been forwarded monthly and show a loss during the campaign in killed, 8 officers, 157 enlisted men; in wounded, 34 officers, 717 enlisted men; in missing, 1 officer, 24 enlisted men; total, 941.
This ends the campaign of Atlanta, commencing, so far as this brigade is concerned, on the 2d of May last, and ending with the occupation of Atlanta, as herein stated--a campaign as difficult, arduous as it has been successful and triumphant. During its continuance this brigade has been actively and almost uninterruptedly engaged either constructing defenses, in hard marches, severe skirmishes, terrific battles, or in the trenches and in line of battle, watching a cautious and vigilant enemy. It has shrunk from no duty and avoided no danger. Its promptness, its discipline, its bravery, and its efficiency have at all times and under all circumstances been conspicuous. Its conduct has been such as to warrant me in adding that I feel proud of my command. My thanks are due and are hereby most heartily tendered to every individual officer and man of which it is composed for the cheerfulness, alacrity, and zeal with which every order I have given has been obeyed and for the apparent confidence which has been reposed in me. I cannot express in too strong terms the commendation to which, in my judgment, the entire command is entitled. It has fairly won, and I trust will promptly receive, the commendation and gratitude of the Government it has been fighting to uphold and of the people whose liberties it has endeavored to maintain and secure. The depleted ranks, its maimed and disabled members, the graves of its killed found on almost every rod of ground between Dalton and Atlanta, proclaim in silent but expressive and eloquent language, not only the indomitable courage and gallantry which has characterized its operations, but the immense cost and sacrifice with which our successes have been obtained. Peace to the brave, the honored dead! May their names be revered and their patriotism and courage remembered by a generous Government and a grateful people, and may their afflicted families and mourning children reap the just reward of their labor. I cannot close this my final report of the operations of my brigade in the campaign of Atlanta without giving renewed expression to the thanks which I deem to be due to the officers of my staff for their kindness and gentlemanly conduct as members of my military family, for the alacrity, zeal, and dispatch with which they have promulgated my orders, for the energy and ability with which they have discharged their specific duties, for the bravery and gallantry they have displayed on every battle-field and in the face of every danger, and for the constant efforts they have made to relieve me of the labors and to lighten the responsibilities which my official position imposed on me. I can only again recommend them, as well as those officers I have particularly mentioned in my report of specific battles, to the attention and consideration of those whose duty and business it is to point out the worthy and the meritorious when the jewels are made up and the rewards of merit distributed.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JR., Colonel, Comdg. Third Brigade, Third Division, 20th Corps.
Capt. ROBERT E. BEECHER,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Third Division.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/2 [S# 73]
MAY 1-SEPTEMBER 8, 1864.--The Atlanta (Georgia) Campaign.
No. 273.--Report of Maj. Henry L. Arnold, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry.
HDQRS. 136TH REGIMENT NEW YORK VOL. INFANTRY,
Atlanta, Ga., September 25, 1864.
I have the honor to forward
the following report of operations in which this regiment was engaged during
the past campaign:
On the 2d of May the Twentieth Corps, of which this regiment forms a part, broke camp in Lookout Valley and marched over Lookout Mountain in the direction of Buzzard Roost. The army concentrated in front of Rocky Face Ridge, and after a demonstration there this regiment, as part of the corps, moved to the right through Snake Creek Gap, in the neighborhood of Resaca, there confronting the enemy. On the morning of the 15th of May this regiment, as part of the Third Brigade, was marched to the left, when, forming in two lines on the left of the Fourth Corps, it was ordered to advance. Pushing forward, an advantageous position was secured, from which the enemy in vain attempted to dislodge us. The rebels took advantage of the following night to retreat. A vigorous pursuit was kept up, and this brigade, having the advance of the division, found the enemy in the vicinity of Cassville. The enemy continuing their retreat beyond Cassville, the regiment remained near the place three days. About the 23d of May the regiment, with the army, moved toward Dallas. Near the latter place the enemy was again encountered on the 25th of May, and the regiment, with the balance of Third Brigade, was ordered about dusk to advance. In the engagement which ensued this regiment did not open fire, as there were other troops in front of it, though the balance of the brigade was in the front line. About 11 p.m. the brigade was relieved and fell back to the rear, and on the 26th relieved the Second Brigade, Third Division, in the breast-works.
On the 1st of June the Twentieth Corps, being relieved, moved some five miles to the left and again advanced in support of the Twenty-third Corps in the operations in the vicinity of Acworth, near which place we remained several days, and from thence advanced to the vicinity of Pine Knob. On the 15th of June the regiment again encountered the enemy near Lost Mountain. The enemy being here outflanked by the advance of the Twenty-third Corps on the right of the Twentieth Corps, fell back to their line near Marietta, when the regiment again skirmished with the enemy. On the 21st this regiment, with the Fifty-fifth Ohio Volunteers, made a reconnaissance. The enemy being found strongly posted, the reconnoitering party, which was under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Faulkner, returned to camp at dark. On the 23d of June the regiment, with the brigade, moved to the right on the Sandtown road, where we remained through the month of June. The regiment was not engaged until--having crossed the Chattahoochee River the 17th July--the enemy attacked us on the 20th of July on Peach Tree Creek, in which action four companies of the regiment were engaged as skirmishers, capturing the battle-flag of the Thirty-first Mississippi Regiment. At dusk the regiment relieved the Twentieth Connecticut Volunteers on the front line. On the 23d of July the regiment, with the brigade, moved forward till the enemy was encountered in his interior lines around Atlanta. In front of these lines the regiment remained until the 24th of August, when the corps moved back to Turner's Ferry, on the Chattahoochee River, where we remained until the 3d of September, when, the enemy having evacuated Atlanta, the regiment, with the brigade, moved into the city.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. L. ARNOLD,
Capt. C. H. YOUNG,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, Third Brigade.
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLIV [S# 92]
NOVEMBER 15-DECEMBER 21, 1864.--The Savannah (Georgia) Campaign.
No. 134.--Report of Lieut. Col. Lester B. Faulkner, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry.
HEADQUARTERS 136TH NEW YORK VOLUNTEERS,
December 27, 1864.
I have the honor to submit
the following as my report of the operations of my command since leaving
We left that place on the 15th of November, and, without incident worthy of special notice, marched about sixteen miles per diem until we reached Milledgeville, which occurred on the 22d ofNovember. Having remained there until the 24th in the p.m. of that day, the march was resumed, but more moderately. We struck the Savannah and Charleston Railroad on the 11th of December, and on the same day took up position in rear of Savannah, where, subject to some annoyance from the enemy's shells, we remained until the 21st, when, the enemy having evacuated the city, we marched in, and afterward camped on the northwest side of the city, where my command now remains. With the exception of six and a half days' hard bread, ten days' coffee, eight days' sugar, seven days' bacon, and eight days' salt, my command subsisted during the march upon provisions taken from the country.
I am, captain, yours, respectfully, &c.,
LESTER B. FAULKNER,
Capt. C. H. YOUNG,
Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., 3d Brig., 3d Div., 20th Corps.
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/1 [S# 98]
JANUARY 1-APRIL 26, 1865.--The Campaign of the Carolinas.
No. 200.--Report of Capt. George H. Eldridge, One hundred and thirty-sixth New York Infantry, of operations January 16-March 24.
HDQRS. 136TH NEW YORK VOLUNTEER INFANTRY,
Goldsborough, N. C., March 25, 1865.
Pursuant to circular of
this date, calling for report of operations since 16th of January, I have
the honor to state that on the 16th of January, when the Third Division,
Twentieth Army Corps, marched from Cheves' farm, this regiment, with Twenty-sixth
Wisconsin Volunteers, was detailed to remain for the purpose of guarding
a wagon train that had been sent to the landing for supplies. On the 18th
the regiment rejoined the brigade at Hardeeville. Here we remained quietly
in camp until January 29, when, with the brigade, we marched toward Robertsville,
which place was reached about 10 a.m. of the 30th. The next day the regiment,
with the brigade, passed through Robertsville and camped some three miles
from Sister's Ferry.
On the 1st of February this regiment, with the Seventy-third Ohio Volunteer Infantry, was engaged in corduroying and repairing the road to Sister's Ferry. On the 2d of February we again broke camp, and, with the brigade, marched through Lawtonville in the direction of Barnwell Court-House. On the 6th the column turned in the direction of Branchville, crossing the Salkehatchie River, striking the Charleston and Augusta Railroad at Graham's Turnout on the 7th. This regiment, with the brigade, was employed all of the 8th in destroying railroad track in the vicinity of Graham's. On the 9th the regiment, with the brigade, marched to Blackville, and were busily employed during the 9th and 10th in tearing up track between Blackville and White Pond Station. From White Pond we marched to the South Edisto, which we were unable to cross until the morning of the 12th, the enemy having destroyed the bridge. On the 13th the North Edisto River was crossed, we marching in the direction of Lexington. On the 16th of February the column turned toward Columbia, and preparations made for an engagement, which did not come off. From Columbia the regiment marched with the brigade, crossing the Saluda and Broad Rivers, entering Winnsborough February 21. Thence we marched with the regiment [brigade?] in toward Chesterfield, crossing the Great Pedee River at Cheraw, and passed through Fayetteville on 13th of March, camping on the north bank of Cape Fear River. The regiment was with the brigade in the reconnaissance of March 14. No casualties were sustained by the regiment in that reconnaissance, although 1 captain and 6 men were captured by the enemy on the same day from our forage detail.
The regiment was with the brigade in the skirmish on the 16th, sustaining considerable loss on the skirmish line. The regiment was also with the brigade in the more severe engagement of the 19th instant, where we were at first deployed, as we were given to understand, in support of the Fourteenth Corps. At or about 6 p.m. the regiment, as part of the brigade, was ordered to advance and make a feint attack, in conjunction with Morgan's division of the Fourteenth Army Corps, who, as soon as we struck the enemy in our front, was to charge and recover ground that had been lost earlier in the day. The ground in front of this regiment was swampy and filled with water knee-deep. On the proper command being given this regiment advanced with the brigade into and nearly through the swamp, when, encountering a heavy fire from the enemy, who were in our front in force, the line halted and commenced firing, which was kept up until nearly 9 p.m. Maj. H. L. Arnold, commanding the regiment, was severely wounded immediately after the advance was ordered and borne from the field. The command of the regiment having thus devolved upon me, I reformed the regiment, which was badly broken up and scattered, and, after the firing had in a measure died away, established the line on the other side of the swamp on dry ground. Thence I was ordered by the brigade commander to withdraw the regiment by companies, successively, to the side of the swamp from which we had started, where a new line was established and protective works thrown up. We were relieved in this position by a brigade of the Fourteenth Corps before noon of the 20th instant and taken to the rear, and thence to the left of our line, where we were again deployed and erected works. From this position we were withdrawn in the afternoon of the 21st instant and taken to the rear of the corps. The regiment marched with the brigade and division in the morning of the 22d in the direction of Goldsborough, crossing the Neuse River at Cox's Bridge on the 23d and entering Goldsborough in the morning of the 24th.
We have drawn from the country and issued to this command some 5,000 pounds of flour, 1,350 pounds of meal, 1,750 pounds of ham, 4,650 pounds of side meat, 134 bushels of sweet potatoes, 3,520 pounds of beans or pease, 55 pounds of tobacco, and 55,400 pounds of corn. We have captured and turned in to Captain Beardsley 18 horses and mules.
I append a list of the casualties of the regiment during the campaign.
I do not know that a single bale of cotton has been burned by any member of this command.
G. H. ELDRIDGE,
Captain, Commanding 136th New York Volunteer Infantry.
Capt. H. G. H. TARR,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, Third Brigade.
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME LII/1 [S# 109]
Union Correspondence, Orders, And Returns Relating To Operations In Southwestern Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, West Florida, And Northern Georgia, From January 1, 1861, To June 30, 1865.--#14
HEADQUARTERS ELEVENTH CORPS,
Bridgeport, Ala., October 12, 1863.
Chief of Staff:
In obedience to orders
received I have the honor to report the following disposition made to guard
the railroad from Tantalon to Bridgeport. Three companies of the One hundred
and thirty-sixth New York Volunteers, under the command of Major Arnold,
are stationed at Tantalon; four companies of the same regiment, commanded
by Colonel Wood, at Anderson; two companies of the same regiment between
Anderson and Stevenson, commanded respectively by Captains Bushwalter [sic.]
and Farron [sic.]; two regiments and nine companies, under the command
of Colonel Smith, are stationed at Stevenson. Of this detachment, three
companies of the Thirty-third Massachusetts, Seventy-third Ohio, and Fifty-fifth
Ohio, one of each, are posted to the west of Stevenson. One company, Thirty-third
Massachusetts, is stationed at Widow's Creek. The remainder of the corps,
First Brigade, Second Division, and the Third Division at Bridgeport, with
one regiment on Long Island and one on the other side of the Tennessee
River. I beg leave to state that the above disposition was made prior to
the receipt of the order changing the dividing line between the Eleventh
and Twelfth Corps, which will necessarily cause some alteration.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
O. O. HOWARD,