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[259] a grapeshot through the breast. A letter had fallen from his pocket, which, on examination, proved to be a long and well-written love-epistle from his betrothed in East-Tennessee. It was addressed to Pleasant J. Williams, Churchill's regiment, Fayetteville, Arkansas. Around him in all directions were his dead and dying comrades, some stretched at full length on the turf, and others contorted as if in extreme agony. The earth was thickly strewn with shot and fragments of shell.

The bursting of shells had set fire to the dry leaves on the ground, and the woods were burning in every direction. Efforts were made to remove the wounded before the flames should reach them, and nearly all were taken to places of safety. Several were afterward found in secluded spots, some of them still alive, but horribly burned and blackened by the conflagration.

The rebels, in nearly every instance, removed the shoes from the dead and mortally wounded, both of their own army and ours. Of all the corpses I saw I do not think one twentieth had been left with their shoes untouched. In some cases pantaloons were taken, and occasionally an overcoat or a blouse was missing. A large number of the killed among the rebels were shot through the head, while the majority of our dead were shot through the breast. The rebels, wherever it was possible, fired from cover; and as often as a head appeared from behind a tree or bush, it became a mark for our men. The Union troops generally stood in ranks, and except when skirmishing, made no use of objects of protection.

Adjutant Sullivan, of the Third Illinois cavalry, passed through the entire action unhurt. His horse was shot under him, but will probably recover from the wound. Adjutant Sullivan is the Sergeant Sullivan who received, in the charge at Dug Spring, in August last, five severe wounds, two of which were supposed to be mortal. The horse which was wounded yesterday is the same that he rode at Dug Spring, and now carries fourteen balls received on that occasion.

Where all the troops did well, it is difficult to particularize instances of special regimental valor. The Iowa infantry came from the field covered with blood and glory, and the two batteries from the same State are equally deserving of praise. The Twelfth Missouri was successful in a bayonet-charge for the capture of a battery, and the Indiana regiments, by their determined bravery, more than trebly atoned for unpleasant memories of Buena Vista.

Col. Hendricks, of the Twenty-second Indiana, was killed while gallantly leading his men in the action of the seventh, under Col. Davis. Two of the German regiments illustrated the Teutonic love of music by singing one of the songs of Faderland while they stood under fire of the rebel batteries on the morning of the eighth. The Illinois regiments were not prominent in the action, with the exception of the Thirty-fifth, Col. William Smith, (wounded,) and the Thirty-sixth, Col. Greusel, but they were all prompt to execute every order which they received. The Forty-fourth Illinois was in the pursuit of the rebels, and returned, bringing nearly a hundred prisoners, and as many horses. Col. Phelps, Twenty-fifth Missouri, was prominent in the action of the seventh, and lost nearly thirty per cent of the number that went into battle. Corp. J. H. Rowles, of Hayden's Dubuque battery, was attached to one of the guns taken by the enemy. While the gunners were retreating, he rushed back and spiked the piece, which was nearly surrounded by the rebels. He received a musket-ball in each leg, and is now lying in the hospital. In a battle of such magnitude, there were numerous deeds of individual daring and personal hardihood, rivalling the romantic exploits of the palmy days of chivalry, that will require days and weeks around the camp-fires to learn their history.

The wooded nature of the country where the battle was fought, rendered cavalry of comparatively little value. The loss of the Third Illinois, the First Missouri, and the Third Iowa cavalry regiments, was nevertheless quite heavy. Lieut.-Col. H. H. Trimble, of the Third Iowa, and Col. C. A. Ellis, of the First Missouri, were wounded, the former severely and the latter slightly. The loss of rank and file of the cavalry, in killed and wounded, is about one twentieth their strength.

There are no data as yet by which we can estimate the loss of the enemy. Their dead and wounded on the ground were much more numerous than ours; at least one half or two thirds more. For ten miles on the road by which they retreated, the houses were full of wounded. The whole line of buildings on the route hence to Keitsville is one grand hospital. Our entire loss is estimated at a little more than a thousand, of whom about one fourth are killed. The full returns will not be in for several days. A flag of truce that has just arrived, with reference to the burial of the dead, and exchange of prisoners, reports that Brig.-Gens. McIntosh, Slack and McBride were killed. By numerous prisoners we have a report that General McCulloch was also killed; but the redoubtable ranger has been slaughtered on so many occasions, and afterward, like the first husband of poor Pillicoddy's wife, turned up again, that we are all skeptical. Perhaps Benjamin has been “gathered to his fathers,” but nobody at present appears to see it.

At present all is confusion with reference to the conflict, and the various statistics inseparably connected with an engagement. We hardly know what we have accomplished, whither the enemy has fled, what is the extent of his calamity, his present position, his strength, and his designs for the immediate future. Neither are we fully acquainted with our own condition, our casualties, our deeds of daring, and our ability again to enter the arena and cope with an enemy nearly treble our strength. When the smoke shall have cleared away from the battle-field, and the clouds that now obscure it are dispelled by the clear sunshine, we can speak more definitely of its losses, its griefs, its incidents of knightly bravery, its triumphs, and its accomplished results

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