bullets, shot and shell frequently struck, without, however, killing a man. At that time many were in doubt if it were not our own troops firing upon us. At about ten o'clock one of my corporals told me that one of Colonel Siegel's staff officers had brought our order to retreat, and as all the troops in sight were retreating I did so too, bringing up the rear. After retiring about one and a half miles, during which we were fired on from a bushy hillside, by a body of men, whom I repulsed, but who caused the loss of one of our remaining guns by killing a wheel-horse, I saw Colonel Siegel at the spring where we camped the first night, when returning from Dug Spring. It was then decided to move south on the Fayetteville road till we could go out and circle round the enemy toward Springfield. We then had my company, (fifty-six men,) about one hundred and fifty infantry badly demoralized, one piece, and two caissons. After retiring about one and a half miles, a large body of cavalry was discovered in front of us, and I was sent to the front, where I observed a column of horse of at least a quarter of a mile in length, moving toward the south on our right and filing into the road in front. I watched them for a few moments, when Colonel Siegel sent me word to take the first left-hand road, which luckily happened to be just at that point. While retreating along this road, Col. Siegel asked me to march slowly so that the infantry could keep up. I urged upon him that the enemy would try to cut us off in crossing Wilson's Creek, and that the infantry and artillery should at least march as fast as the ordinary walk of my horses; he assented and told me to go on, which I did at a walk, and upon arriving at the creek I was much surprised and pained to find that he was not up; as, however, I observed a great body coming from the enemy's camp, which was not far off, I concluded that it was no time for delay and moved on, after watering my horses, till I arrived at a spot where I thought I could venture to halt and wait for Col. Siegel, which I did for some time, and then pursued my march to Springfield. It turned out that the Colonel was ambuscaded as I anticipated, his whole party broken. up, and that he himself narrowly escaped. It is a subject of regret with me to have left him behind, but I supposed all the time that he was close behind me, until I got to the creek, and it would have done no good for my company to have been cut to pieces also. As it was, four of my men were lost, who had been placed in the rear of his infantry. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
E. A. Carr, Captain First Cavalry. A. A.-G. Army of the West.
Report of Captain Wright.
camp near Rolla, August 19, 1861.Major: On the morning of the 10th, at half-past 5 oclock, the squadron commanded by me was ordered from the rear to the front of the command by General Lyon. When I advanced, I found the General occupying a point on the right of the ravine overlooking the head of the rebel forces in camp on Wilson's Creek. He at once called my attention to parties occupying the ridges and corn-fields on the left, asking me if I could drive them back; to which I replied that I would try. I was then ordered to take the extreme left with my command, (consisting of my own and Capt. Switzler's company of cavalry,) and sustain it if possible. I at once took position on the left, and immediately in front of the corn-fields. At six A. M. the fire was opened on our right. Ten minutes later the enemy showed themselves in our front. I ordered a charge, which resulted in the entire rout of the enemy, about 1,000 in number, and drove them from the brush into the upper corn-field. The second was by the right of my command, making through the fence at the upper end of the cornfield, under Captain Switzler; the left under my immediate command to the left of the cornfield, with a right wheel, forming a cross fire and junction with the Eighth, telling fearfully on the enemy, and resulting in an entire rout and abandonment of the field. The squadron then retired to the left, and occupied a high ridge for observation. It was soon discovered that a company of cavalry and some four or five companies of infantry were flanking us on the left. In their detached condition it was thought prudent to make an advance upon them. We advanced steadily until evident signs of retreat were visible, when a charge was ordered, which resulted in cutting off one company, and the entire destruction of it except two. At this point we were immediately south of the second or large corn-field, and immediately back of their hospital, at the mouth of a ravine leading to the left, and no doubt would have been cut off by a column in the upper end of the cornfield, (that had escaped my notice,) had it not been for the relief of Captain Totten's battery on the extreme right. A few shots told with fearful effect, relieved my command, and drove the enemy below. Our victory at this time appeared complete on the left. In twenty minutes, perhaps, a body of cavalry appeared half a mile to our left. We advanced steadily upon them before coming in gun-shot. They gave way; we followed to the top of the ridge, when we found ourselves in the face of a camp not before discovered. Captain Switzler and myself took a position of observation, and estimated the forces in this camp at ten thousand. We soon learned from the movements that they were falling into column, and evidently going to march on the Federal troops to the right. We at once retired to our former position. Finding no appearance of the enemy at that point on the left, (except the column referred to,) I at once rode up to Headquarters in person