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[252] greatest coolness, and did not fall back until ordered to do so. Gen. Curtis then ordered me to take a new position, supporting the First Iowa and one other battery. The order was obeyed with promptness, and as the batteries advanced the regiment also advanced in line of battle on the open field, exposed to the fire from the enemy's batteries. You ordered me at this instant to the support of Woeff's and Hoffman's batteries, stationed on the open field in front of the high ridge occupied by the enemy, which was done with the greatest alacrity. Having taken this position, companies A, C, G, and K, were ordered forward to support our forces, which were then storming the ridges, which was done in the most spirited manner, our companies joining with other regiments in driving the enemy from their strong position, whilst the balance of the regiment followed as a reserve. The enemy having been driven forward, we pursued them some four miles on the road toward Keitsville. Arriving at the junction of the Bentonville road, I was ordered, after being joined by two companies of the Thirty-sixth Illinois regiment, and one company of the Benton Hussars, to continue the pursuit of the enemy on the Bentonville road. At seven o'clock the next morning, I marched toward Bentonville, going within five miles of the place. Having no orders to proceed further, and Col. Ellis's cavalry regiment having overtaken me, I returned to within one mile of the Keitsville road, and the next day joined your command, leaving two companies to guard the road.

Owing to the coolness and discipline of the soldiers, and the fortunate positions which were selected, our loss was very small, being only one man killed, two wounded, and seventeen missing. All, officers and soldiers, behaved with the greatest spirit and courage. I would especially mention the names of Capt. A. A. Barret, Acting Major, Capt. J. Russell, Capt. L. M. Sabin, Capt. Max Crone, of the Potomac army, who volunteered for the occasion, Adj. Jas. S. Ransom and Lieut. Davis, who displayed great energy and courage.

The regiment has taken in this engagement over one hundred and fifty prisoners, among them one acting brigadier-general, one colonel, one major, one chaplain, three captains, and two lieutenants. They have also captured one stand of colors, two hundred and thirty stand of arms, and sixty horses.

Very respectfully yours,

Chas. Knobelsdorff, Colonel Commanding.


Sigel's address to his soldiers.

headquarters First and Second divisions, Camp Pea Ridge, Arkansas, March 15, 1862.
To the Officers and Soldiers of the First and Second Divisions:
After so many hardships and sufferings of this war in the West, a great and decisive victory has, for the first time, been attained, and the army of the enemy overwhelmed and perfectly routed. The rebellious flag of the confederate States lies in the dust, and the same men who had organized armed rebellion at Camp Jackson, Maysville and Fayetteville — who have fought against us at Boonville, Carthage and Wilson's Creek, at Lexington and Milford, have paid the penalty of their seditious work with their lives, or are seeking refuge behind the Boston Mountains and the shores of the Arkansas River.

The last days were hard, but triumphant. Surrounded and pressed upon all sides by an enterprising, desperate and greedy enemy — by the Missouri and Arkansas mountaineer, the Texas ranger, the finest regiment of Louisiana troops, and even the savage Indian--almost without food, sleep or camp-fires, you remained firm and unabashed, awaiting the moment when you could drive back your assailants or break through the iron circle by which the enemy thought to crush or capture us all, and plant the rebellious flag on the rocky summit of Pea Ridge.

You have defeated all their schemes. When at McKissick's farm, west of Bentonville, you extricated yourselves from their grasp by a night's march, and secured a train of two hundred wagons before the enemy became aware of the direction you had taken. Instead of being cut off, weakened and driven to the necessity of giving battle under the most unfavorable circumstances, you joined your friends and comrades at Sugar Creek, and thereby saved yourselves and the whole army from being separated and beaten in detail.

On the retreat from Bentonville to Sugar Creek — a distance of ten miles--you cut your way through an enemy at least five times stronger than yourselves. The activity, self-possession, and courage of the little band of six hundred will ever be memorable in the history of this war.

When, on the next day, the great battle began, under the command of Gen. Asboth, you assisted the Fourth division with all the cheerfulness and alacrity of good and faithful soldiers — that division on that day holding the most important position — while Col. Osterhaus, cooperating with the Third division, battered down the hosts of McCulloch on our left, and Major Paten guarded our rear.

On the eighth, you came at the right time to the right place. It was the first opportunity you had of showing your full strength and power. In less than three hours you formed in line of battle, advanced and cooperated with our friends on the right, and routed the enemy so completely that he fled like dust before a hurricane. And so it will always be when traitors, seduced by selfish leaders and persecuted by the pangs of an evil conscience, are fighting against soldiers who defend a good cause, are well drilled and disciplined, obey promptly the orders of their officers, and do not shrink from dangerous assault when, at the proper and decisive moment, it is necessary.

You may look with pride on the few days just passed, during which you have so gloriously defended the flag of the Union. From two o'clock on the morning of the sixth, when you left McKissick's farm, until four o'clock in the afternoon of the ninth, when you arrived from Keitsville in the common encampment, you marched fifty


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