Today in History:

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

Page 750 KY., SW. VA., Tennessee,MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA.


emy advanced. When he had reached within 50 steps of the battery, Brigadier-General Smith charged him with the right of Mill's regiment and the left of the Seventh Texas, Smith's north front pouring into him from the breastworks a close volley at the same time. The enemy was routed and driven back to his cover behind the hill-side and abandoned work.

In this charge Brigadier-General Smith and Colonel Mills were both severely wounded at the head of their men. Colonel H. B. Granbury, Seventh Texas, now assumed command of Smith's brigade. In less than half an hour the enemy made another desperate charge. He was met by the Texas men and artillery in front. Douglas' battery enfiladed him from Govan's hill, and Lowrey's extreme left regiment got a long-range volley on his flank. He was driven back in confusion as before.

In these attacks Lieutenant H. Shannon, commanding Swett's battery, was wounded. The command devolved on Lieutenant Joseph Ashton; in a few minutes he was mortally wounded. The command then fell on Corpl. F. M. Williams. So many non-commissioned officers and men had been killed and disabled in the battery, Colonel Granbury was forced to make a detail from the infantry to work the guns. There was now a short lull in the battle, during which, at the request of Colonel Granbury, I detailed the Second, Fifteenth and Twenty-fourth Arkansas (consolidated), under Lieutenant-Colonel Warfield, from Govan's left, and posted them immediately in rear of the battery on top of the Tunnel Hill. I sent two of Swett's 12-pounder to report to Colonel Govan, as Douglas' guns were too light to be effective in their present position. I ordered Key's battery of four light field pieces to move up and replace the guns sent off, and put Lieutenant Key in command of all the artillery on Tunnel Hill.

About 1 p.m. it was evident that another grand attack was soon to be made on my division. In a few minutes after it commenced. The enemy again lined Smith's abandoned works, and from them kept up a close, incessant fire on Smith's north front, and particularly on the artillery on top of the hill. Simultaneously a charge was made on the west face of Tunnel Hill. Warfield's regiment was thrown forward outside of the work to the crest of the hill, looking into the Tennessee Valley, to meet this charge. Key fired rapidly into the charging line as it crossed the open ground at the west foot of the of ridge, but it was soon under shelter. At the steep the enemy's line now seemed to form into a heavy column on the march, and rushed up the hill in the direction of the batteries. Warfield's fire stopped the head of the charging column just under the crest. Here the enemy lay down behind trees, logs, and projecting rocks, their first line not 25 yards from the guns, and opened fire. Tier after tier of the enemy, to the foot of the hill and in the valley beyond, supplied this fire and concentrated the whole on a space of not more than 40 yards, till it seemed like one continuous sheet of hissing, flying lead, This terrific fire prevented Warfield's men from moving sufficiently forward to fire with effect down the hill, but otherwise it only swept over our heads. The cross-fire from Smith's abandoned work was, however, more fatal. I took Warfield in flank and was constantly disabling men near the top of the hill.

This desperate attack had now lasted more than half an hour. Key was depressing his guns to the utmost and firing shell and canister down the hill in the face of the enemy's fire. Discovering the

Page 750 KY., SW. VA., Tennessee,MISS., N. ALA., AND N. GA.