|Chapter XXIX. IUKA.
in rallying the men who had left their commands and bringing them into position to do good execution against the enemy. The line of officers deserving especial mention for gallantry in the field during the action are named and referred to in the reports of the commanders of their respective regiments, which reports are by me approved and confirmed, and to which attention i directed.
JOHN B. SANBORN,
Captain R. M. SAWYER,
Asst. Adjt. General, Third Div., Army of the Mississippi.
Report of Colonel Norman Eddy, Forty-eighth Indiana Infantry.
HOSPITAL Numbers 2, Iuka, Miss., September 21, 1862.
COLONEL: I respectfully report the part taken in the action by my regiment while I remained on the field near Iuka, Miss., on the 19th instant:
In pursuance to your orders and that of General Hamilton the regiment was formed on a line nearly with and to the left of the Eleventh Ohio Battery, Lieutenant Sears commanding, on the crest of a hill on ridge receding to the left and semicircular in form. In the rear was placed the Sixteenth Iowa for our support, and not more than 20 yards from us, and to the left was the Fourth Minnesota, in continuation of the front. The men were ordered to lie down and to hold their fire until they could make it effective. There was a deep gulch or ravine which it was impossible to reach with musketry as the line was then formed. To the right wing of the regiment the line of fire was much circumscribed, the range being confined to the sharp slope of the hill opposite and to a descending plane to the front of the line of fire was much circumscribed, the range being confined to the sharp slope of the hill opposite and to a descending plane tot he front of the line on which we were formed of not over 25 or 30 yards in width. On the left of the regiment the descent of the ground was less rapid and abrupt, but rolling, and at many points offered a cover to an enemy's approach. The fire opened upon us by their batteries at about 5 p. m., and at first seemed mainly directed at the battery on our right, but taking in its range the first and second companies of the regiment, who suffered early and severely in the engagement. The fire from the batteries was from converging points, and therefore enfilading, under which those troops to the front and to the right and left of our battery suffered severely. After their cannonading had lasted half an hour or more circumstanced indicated the approach of an attacking column, of which I promptly informed you. They advanced in three lines, two deep each. As soon as they were perceived ont he summit and descent of the hill ont he opposite side, at about 250 yards distant, we opened our fire upon them and continued it until they were hidden by the declivity below, resuming the fire as soon as they came within reach. Here they met us with a volley, and our support having given away, with a force in our front at least four to one, the regiment followed. They fell back nearly 100 yards, where they were rallied, and although the line was irregular, they still showed a front to the enemy and continued to fire. By your direction I advanced to the support of the battery. When within about 40 yards of it I was wounded and compelled to retire to the rear. The command of the regiment then devolved upon Lieutenant-Colonel Rugg. His report,
7 R R-VOL XVII
|Chapter XXIX. IUKA.