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[6] creek, and crossed two regiments over under command of Colonel Mercer of the Twenty-first Georgia regiment, with orders to move upon their flank and rear, while I would repair the bridge and cross over the remainder of the command. This was soon done, arid we were not long delayed. The enemy, in the meantime, had telegraphed for reinforcements, who were about two miles distant, and arrived in time to form in the field in rear of the creek, artillery and infantry, but we soon drove them before us, and completely routed them. They made my anticipated move, which was to throw troops by cars across the creek on the railroad, and came in our rear. This was what we wanted, and I moved with all possible speed, a distance of six miles, to strike the railroad and capture the train, but the enemy by telegraphic communications were apprised of our move, and returned the train loaded with troops, just five minutes before I reached the road. It was my intention, had I gotten the train, to place my men upon it and go into Newbern.

At this point my brigade was halted to meet any advance of the enemy from the town, while General Clingman was ordered across to the Trent road to prevent the return of the enemy from Deep Gully, and also to take all stragglers, but not knowing the country, he failed to reach the road, which was extremely unfortunate, as during the evening, at different times (500) five hundred infantry and (400) four hundred cavalry, passed into the town panic-stricken, leaving their camps in wild confusion.

After General Corse came up to the railroad, I moved my brigade within a mile to the front of the town, to await the sound of Barton's guns from the opposite side of Trent river, when, much to my surprise, I saw two trains come into town from Morehead City, which proved clearly that Barton had not reached the point of destination. We remained in front of Newbern all day Tuesday, waiting Barton's move, when, much to my disappointment, a dispatch was received from him, stating that it was impossible for him to cross the creek. Being junior officer, it does not become me to speak my thoughts of this move.

On Wednesday we were ordered to return towards Batchelor's creek, my brigade bringing up the rear. Colonel Wood, on Sunday, found no boats in the river, but on Monday night most gallantly destroyed one of their first-class boats. Our surprise was most complete, and had all parties done their duty, our hopes would have been more than realized.

We now know the place was within our grasp, which was seen

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J. M. Barton (3)
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