Today in History:

105 Series I Volume XXXVIII-III Serial 74 - The Atlanta Campaign Part III


at a time when I much needed them, and under the skillful management of the officers who commanded them, acted gallantly until the battle was ended.

Major-Generals Blair and Dodge have my warmest thanks for the promptness with which they sent me the re-enforcements mentioned upon my request. Officers and men behaved alike gallantly and heroically; they could not have displayed more courage nor determination not to yield. Had they shown less, they would have been driven from their position, and the enemy would have become the victors. Brigadier-Generals Woods, M. L. Smith, and Harrow, division commanders, are entitled to equal credit for gallant conduct and skill in repelling the many and desperate assaults of the enemy.

My losses were 50 killed, 439 wounded, and 73 missing. Aggregate, 562. General Harrow's division captured 5 battle-flags from the enemy. Between 1,500 and 2,000 muskets were captured, and 106 prisoners (not including 73 wounded). Over 600 of the enemy's dead were buried in my front. A large number were supposed to be carried away during the night as the enemy did not withdraw until nearly daylight. The enemy's loss in this battle could not, in my judgment, have been less than 6,000 or 7,000. Rebel papers subsequently read admit their loss very heavy, and say the fighting was the most desperate of the campaign.

During the night, by my direction, the strongest defensive line that could be established was completed, and the next day (the enemy having in the night retired beyond the reach of my fire) was occupied in burying the enemy's dead and removing the wounded from the field to the hospitals in the rear.

From prisoners I have learned that the assault was made with Hardee's and Lee's (late Hood's) corps entire.

From the 29th of July to the 3rd of August the command was advanced by swinging the right around a distance of one mile, intrenching two intermediate lines. The Fourteenth Corps, from the Cumberland Army, having been sent to the right, I caused the right of Wood's division to connect with its left, thus straightening my line, which now fronted in the direction of Atlanta, east-southeast. On the 3rd of August General Harrow, wishing to advance his line to the ridge upon which the enemy's skirmish line was intrenched, organized a portion of his command, which, under his direction, moved so rapidly forward, and with so little demonstration, that he surprised the entire line of skirmishers and captured them all. This maneuver was highly creditable to General Harrow and to the officers and soldiers who were engaged in it. The number of prisoners captured in this assault, which though very short, was 83. The Second Division assisted General Harrow in this movement, moving the left of its line in conjunction with him and capturing that part of the skirmish line in its front with 5 prisoners. The losses of the two divisions were, in the aggregate, 92 during the entire days' operations.

After the lines of my command had been straightened, with Brigadier-General Harrow's (Fourth) division forming the left, and connecting with the right of the Seventeenth Corps, Brigadier-General Lightburn's division (late M. L. Smith's division) the center, and Brigadier-General Woods' division the right, connecting with the left of the Fourteenth Army Corps (as shown in the map, Numbers 6*),


*To appear in the Atlas.