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[27] to their camp, but they soon awakened to their danger as our advancing column came rushing up to his relief. It was now found that the thick timber and underbrush forbade us charging upon the camp, and the order to dismount passed along the lines like magic, and a column of armed infantry emerged from our lines on the roadside, ready for the onset. The battle now commenced in earnest, and volley after volley of musketry told us that the work of death had begun.

They rushed from their line of battle, after their second volley, into the intrenchment formed by the creek, and behind trees, logs, etc., and opened fire upon our lines, which was promptly answered by our forces armed with carbines, by a continued fire. Major Torrence now ordered his men forward with revolver and saber, to make a charge on the camp, and with a yell along their lines they advanced, and in the face of the enemy's fire, rushed into camp, guidons flying to the breeze. So great was the eagerness to move forward, that three companies claim the honor of being first in camp.

The enemy now, true to their time-honored custom, gave way, and ran most ingloriously from their camp, leaving guns, horses, camp equipage, and a large quantity of new clothing for men in Price's army, sent no doubt by their friends in care of Poindexter; also, a quantity of powder. It was a complete rout, as the appearance of the camp fully attested. It was now nearly dark, with a heavy fog, and fearing that the enemy only retired as a ruse to rally and attack us, the order was given to destroy the whole camp and equipage that we might meet, and pursue them. The work of destruction was soon complete — wagons, saddles, tents, blankets, clothing, etc., all heaped in burning ruins. We now looked up our dead and wounded, and cared for them. The enemy's dead lay in all portions of the camp, and the groans of their dying mingled with the exultant shouts of the victors. It was a fearful struggle, as the soldiers all well knew they could never retreat, and it was victory or death to them. The cool courage and gallant bearing of the officers in command, were highly commendable. The heavy tones of Major Torrence's voice were heard in all parts of the battle — now here, now there, encouraging his men, and leading them onward to victory. We could not learn, accurately, the loss of the enemy, but found ten of their dead in and around the camps, with several severely wounded. We learn that they were expecting, momentarily, a large reenforcement to their camp, and claim a complete surprise. So much for the generalship of Col. Poindexter.

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W. M. G. Torrence (2)
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