No. 72.-findings of a court of inquiry relative to skirmish near Corinth, Miss., May 9.
General orders, no. 16.
headquarters Army of the Ohio, In Camp, May 16, 1862.I. Proceedings of a court of inquiry, convened at camp, 6 miles from Corinth, Miss., May 13, 1862, pursuant to Special Orders, No. 48, from these Headquarters, dated May 12, 1862. The court examined into the behavior of certain detachments of engineers, cavalry, and infantry of this army, who were engaged in or connected with a skirmish which took place in front of McCook's and Wood's divisions on the 9th instant. The court finds as follows, viz: That on the 9th of the present month our line of outposts in front of General McCook's division were assailed by the enemy to the number of about 250 infantry, and that our forces yielded the ground to the distance of about 300 yards, without adequate resistance; our forces in all numbering about 300 men. A detachment of Engineers and Mechanics, under Colonel Innes, on the right; two squadrons of the Third Ohio Cavalry in the center, one commanded by Major Foster, the other by Major Paramore; and a detachment of 100 infantry, Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania and Twenty-ninth Indiana, on the left; Captain Rose, of the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania, commanding. While our line of skirmishers were falling back before the enemy, Major Foster, the senior officer of cavalry, was dismounting some of his men to continue the fight on foot. At this juncture Major Paramore, of the same regiment, and a junior officer, faced his squadron about and moved his command to the rear, notwithstanding the strong remonstrances of Major Foster. The action of Major Foster was calculated to strengthen our line, but it was neutralized by the conduct of Major Paramore, whose behavior on this occasion should receive further notice. The Engineers and Mechanics, under Colonel Innes, did not come within the limits of effective fire, and the court finds nothing to censure in their conduct.  The infantry, under Captain Rose, of the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania, was withdrawn by orders to retreat, given by himself and Captain Davis, of the Twenty-ninth Indiana. If these officers be reminded that to save the lives of their men is sometimes secondary to saving the honor of their corps, the court will recommend no further proceedings in their case. No other troops than the above named appear to have been engaged in or connected with the skirmish. II. The proceedings of the court are approved, and a court-martial will be ordered for the trial of Major Paramore, Third Ohio Cavalry. The court has viewed leniently the conduct of Captain Rose, of the Seventy-seventh Pennsylvania, and Captain Davis, of the Twenty-ninth Indiana, and in adopting its suggestion the general commanding does not deem it necessary to dwell upon errors of which these officers must now be fully aware and into which it is thought no large portion of this army is likely to fall. The commanding officer of the Second Division will give Captains Rose and Davis an opportunity to show that they have profited by the admonition of the court. III. The court of inquiry, of which Lieut. Col. G. W. Gorman, Seventeenth Indiana Volunteers, is president, is dissolved. By command of Major-General Buell:
James B. Fry, Assistant Adjutant-General, Chief of Staff.
headquarters Army of the Ohio, In Camp, May 17, 1862.sir: The court of inquiry which convened on the 13th instant to examine into the behavior of the troops engaged in the skirmish on the 9th instant has reported, and it affords General Buell pleasure to say that the Second Indiana Cavalry, Colonel McCook, was found to have taken no part in the affair; and that if my letter of the 10th instant reflected or is understood to have reflected on this regiment the same is canceled, so far as the Second Indiana Cavalry is concerned. General Buell directs me to call. your attention to the following abstract from Colonel McCook's letter of the 10th instant: None of my men on yesterday or at any other time have ever behaved in a manner which Colonel Fry terms discreditable to the army or themselves, &c., and I regard it, to say the least, as unjust and unsoldierly to cast this stain upon the honor of the regiment and State, &c. You will perceive the impropriety of this language, and are desired to admonish Colonel McCook of the same, and to say that in thus passing it over the general must make known to Colonel McCook that a recurrence of this impropriety would render it necessary to take some more decided official notice of it. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,