Today in History:

627 Series I Volume XXXI-II Serial 55 - Knoxville and Lookout Mountain Part II


Numbers 201.

Report of Lieutenant Colonel Jeremiah W. Jenkins, Thirty-first Iowa Infantry.

HDQRS. THIRTY-FIRST IOWA INFANTRY VOLUNTEERS, Camp near Ringgold, Ga., November 29, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to make the following report of the operations of this regiment at the battles of Lookout Mountain, Mission Ridge, and Ringgold:

On the morning of the 24th instant the regiment fell into line in obedience to orders, and about noon crossed (Lookout) Creek, and moved up the western slope of Lookout Mountain in support of the First Brigade of this division and other troops, who were engaging the enemy on that side of the mountain. After reaching the first line of the enemy's works, which had already been taken, the regiment moved round to the left near the while house, where it remained for an hour or more under a scattering fire from the enemy, which it was impossible to return, and which severely wounded a sergeant of Company F. Soon after, the regiment was ordered to join the brigade lower down the hill, where it lay till 3 p. m., when it moved to the front, along the eastern slope of the mountain, immediately south of the white house. The regiment took a position on the side of the mountain, extending obliquely from the line on our right toward the road leading to the top of the mountain, the left of the regiment thrown forward so as to be within a few rods of the enemy's line. The enemy poured a heavy fire upon the regiment from the moment it passed the white house, and by the time it reached its position and commenced firing, 4 men had been wounded, one mortally and all severely. The firing was heavy along the whole line for two hours, and upon our left it was terrific till the enemy fell back and took a new position.

About 10 p. m. the officer commanding Company B, on the left (Captain Speer), informed me that the enemy were moving in force to the left, and throwing forward a force apparently to flank us. I immediately dispatched the intelligence to General Geary, and asked to have additional troops sent to our left. In accordance with the request, the Second Ohio and Forty-second Indiana were immediately sent, and had scarcely formed when the enemy opened upon them and upon our entire line a terrific fire, which continued for two hours with the most persistent energy. Our troops gallantly repelled the attack and held the position, although the enemy made three desperate attempts to force them back. About 12 o'clock the firing ceased, and the troops lay upon their arms till 5 a. m., when the regiment was relieved and rejoined the brigade in its position of the evening before, having been fourteen hours in the front and at lest nine hours under the severest fire. About 10 a. m. of the 25th instant the regiment moved with the brigade from the position on Lookout Mountain, along the Rossville road toward Mission Ridge. Near the foot of the ridge it was deployed into line of battle on the left of the road, and advanced to the top of the ridge without finding any enemy, except a few skirmishers, who made a hasty retreat. On arriving at the top of the ridge the regiment moved by the flank into the road, and, after a brief delay, along the Graysville road. The skirmishers soon discovered, and opened fire upon, the enemy upon the left of the road, and the regiment, facing to the left, advanced