"In two ranks, count two's....."
Casey's, page 12 (in my book), paragraph 16 under Title 1, Article 1, Formation of Infantry in Order of Battle:
"The odd and even files (note: front and rear rank men forming a file), numbered as one, two, in the company, from right to left, will form groups of four men, who will be designated comrades in battle."
Now, as to a "column"......
Many people, officers included, incorrectly think that a unit marching by the flank, in fours, is a "column". It is simply marching by the flank. The term "column" tended to be used more for a column of companies (one company of a regiment/battalion marching one behind the other) or a column of divisions (two companies side-by-side, marching the same way).
Now, assuming that you are referring to a "column" as troops marching by the flank, how they come into a battlefront depends upon which direction they are marching (by the right or left flank), and in which direction the commander wishes them to turn in order to form the battleline/face the enemy.
If they are marching by the right flank, and the commander wishes them to form battleline to the left (towards their original front), all he has to do is to tell them to either "front" or "By the left flank, halt" to bring them into positon. If by the left flank, the command would be "front" or "By the right flank, halt".
If the commander wishes them to face in the opposite direction of their original front, he can use the "By file into line" commands.
If they are to form battleline in the same direction in which the flank march is moving, there are a number of ways to do this, the simplest being to designate upon which company the line is to form, all companies doing a "By company into line", forming a column of companies, and then the designated company continuing to march forward while the other companies move to their appropriate respective places in line of battle around it.