No. 125.-report of Lieut. Col. Cicero Maxwell, Twenty-sixth Kentucky Infantry.
camp Shiloh, Tenn., April 9, 1862.Sir: I have the honor to report the part taken by the Twenty-sixth Regiment Kentucky Volunteers in the engagement here on the 7th instant. As the division of which the regiment under my command is a part did not arrive at Pittsburg Landing until the night of the 6th, the regiment under my command, was not in the conflict of that day. About 6 o'clock a. m. on the 7th the Fourteenth Brigade, of which the regiment under my command is a part, under the command of Col. W. S. Smith, was moved toward the left of the center of our army and drawn up in line of battle close to the left wing of our army, then engaged with the enemy. The regiment under my command was, as I understand, the position taken on the left of our brigade. We remained in this position until about 10 o'clock a. m., when the enemy commenced a furious attack on the center of our army. The position of our brigade was then somewhat changed, but owing to a regiment not connected with our division coming too close to the left of our brigade and commencing firing, the regiment under my command, when its position was changed, was nearly entirely in rearof the Thirteenth Ohio, and could not then be deployed to the left of our brigade without going before the regiment spoken of on our left. This regiment, which I have been told since I commenced writing this report was the Second Kentucky Volunteers, was in a few moments moved farther to the left, but not far enough; for when I had deployed the regiment under my command as far as I could without getting in range of the fire of the Second Kentucky, about one-half or more of the regiment under my command was still in rear of the Thirteenth Ohio. Our brigade had already commenced firing, and as soon as I made the deployment of the regiment under my command I ordered the left companies to commence firing. The command was obeyed very promptly and the other companies rushed forward, became intermingled with the regiment whose left was in front, and commenced firing. Our brigade now commenced a most furious charge, and the greater portion of the men moved forward rapidly with loud cheers upon the enemy, who was posted in a very dense thicket and vastly superior in numbers, drove him for nearly a mile with great slaughter, and captured a portion of a battery; but the enemy massing a very large force immediately in front of us, and being sustained by powerful batteries, we  were compelled to fall back a short distance and leave the guns captured, which was done in good order, our men contesting the ground. It was impossible in this charge to keep in order of battle. Such was the density of the thicket through which we passed, the rapidity of the charge, and the enthusiasm of the soldiers, that the regiments became mixed together, and when we retired behind the Eleventh Brigade, which in the mean time had been ordered to our support I could not collect all the men of the regiment under my command. iany of them got into other regiments, and rendered good service, as I am informed, during the day. In this, what may in truth be called a most brilliant and daring charge, I am gratified to be able to say that the regiment under my command, which went into it with only about 270 men, officers and all, with perhaps a few dishonorable exceptions, acted a most gallant part. The men generally behaved with great bravery, considering it was the first engagement in which many of them had ever been, and the company officers, so far as they came under my observation, acted with great coolness and bravery. Maj. John L. Davidson, who behaved with most undaunted bravery was killed instantly on the field while cheering the men on to the charge, as was First Lieutenant Higdon, of Company F who fell early in the charge while cheering his men onward. Several of the company officers were wounded while gallantly urging their men forward. Their names will appear among the list of killed and wounded which will be inclosed herewith. After we were compelled to retire I collected all that I could find of the regiment under my command, the men coming into line very promptly, and by order of General Buell, as I was marching to join our brigade, took a position in rear of the Eleventh Brigade, where we remained for some time but were afterward ordered forward on what I have heard is the Purdy road, to sustain a battery; but when we got to the battery the enemy was in full retreat, and we bivouacked for the night in a drenching rain. Although the regiment under my command was not long engaged the loss was quite severe. A list of the names of killed and wounded will beinclosed herewith. The number killed was 7; mortally wounded, 4; severely wounded, 18; wounded, 9, but how I cannot say; slightly wounded, 36; missing, 4; total killed and wounded, 74.1 Many were slightly wounded, and now report for duty. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
camp Shiloh, Tenn., April 12, 1862.Sir: As a wrong inference may be drawn from my report in connection with Colonel Smith's, in relation to a portion of our officers, I beg leave to make an additional report as to the particular company officers in the regiment under my command. Captain Belt and Lieutenant Ranney, of Company A, though worn down by sickness, acted very gallantly during the charge, but I did not see them any more during  the day. Captain Netter, Lieutenants Taylor and Stanley, of Company B; Captain Mattingly and Lieutenant Smallhouse, of Company C, Second Lieutenant Overstreet being at Savannah; Second Lieutenant Wells, of Company D, the captain being absent; Lieutenant Redfearn, of Company E, the captain and first lieutenant being absent; Lieutenant Earnest, of Company F, the captain being absent, and Lieutenant Higdon being mentioned in my other report, and Captain Farleigh, First Lieutenant Ashcroft, and Second Lieutenant Brown acted with conspicuous coolness and bravery during the charge and also while falling back, and rendered great assistance in getting the men of the regiment under my command together. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,