previous next

[406] commanding; Ninth Minnesota infantry volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel John F. King, commanding; Ninety-third Indiana infantry volunteers, Lieutenant-Colonel J. F. Marsh, commanding; company E, First Illinois light artillery, Captain John A. Fitch, commanding; section Sixth Indiana battery, Captain M. Miller, commanding.

Second brigade: Colonel George B. Hoge, One Hundred and Thirteenth Illinois infantry, commanding; Eighty-first Illinois infantry volunteers; Ninety-fifth Illinois infantry volunteers ; One hundred and eighth Illinois infantry volunteers; One hundred and thirteenth Illinois infantry volunteers; One hundred and twentieth Illinois infantry volunteers; Company B, Second Illinois light artillery, Captain F. H. Chapman, commanding.

Third brigade: Colonel Edward Bouton, Fifty-ninth United States infantry (colored), commanding; Fifty-fifth United States infantry, (colored), Major E. M. Lowe, commanding; Fifty-ninth United States infantry, (colored,) Lieutenant-Colonel Robert Cowden, commanding; Battery F, Second United States artillery (colored), Captain C. A. Lamburgh commanding.

During the organization of the infantry division the large supply and ammunition train was brought up by the cavalry and turned over to me for safe conduct. The cavalry moved on the same day in the direction of Lamar, and the next morning at half-past 3 o'clock, the infantry was in motion in the same direction.

From this time until the morning of the tenth instant, nothing of importance occurred beyond the difficulties constantly encountered in consequence of heavy rains daily, causing the streams to be much swollen, and the roads almost impassable, together with the embarrassment we labored under in procuring forage, our line of march being through a country destitute of supplies. Our progress was necessarily slow and laborious, giving the enemy ample opportunity to ascertain our force and make arrangements to meet us with superior numbers.

On the evening of the ninth we reached a point on the Ripley and Fulton road, fifteen or sixteen miles from the former place, where we camped for the night, marching on the morning of the tenth in the direction of the Mobile and Ohio railroad, expecting to strike it at or in the vicinity of Guntown. I had proceeded some five miles with the head of the column, and halted to permit the wagon train to cross the Hatchie river and close up. The road through the bottom land of this stream was almost impassable, and we found it impossible to put it in good condition.

While waiting at the head of my column to hear from the rear, I was informed by General Sturgis that General Grierson, commanding cavalry division, had struck the enemy beyond Brice's cross-roads, some five miles in advance, and was ordered to move my leading brigade up as rapidly as possible to the support of the cavalry, leaving the other two brigades to come up with the train. I accordingly ordered Colonel Hoge, commanding Second brigade (the advance that day), to move up in quick time, without any reference to the column in his rear, and sent my quartermaster to close up the train, and have it, with the brigades of Colonels Wilken and Bouton, moved up as rapidly as possible. I accompanied the advance brigade and en route to the field received repeated and urgent orders to move up as rapidly as possible, as the enemy was developing a large force and driving our cavalry back. Colonel Hoge's advance regiment, the One Hundred and Thirteenth Illinois infantry, reached the cross-roads between one and two P. M., and went into action at once on the right of the Baldwin road, relieving Colonel Waring's brigade of cavalry, which had been forced back to within a short distance of Brice's house. As fast as Colonel Hoge's regiment came up they were deployed on the right of the Baldwin road, extending the line in a semi-circular form in the direction of the Guntown road, relieving the cavalry as they took position. As soon as the regiments took their position in line, skirmishers were thrown forward, and the men told that the enemy was in their immediate presence in force, and that they must be prepared to meet a heavy attack soon. The skirmish line was established along the whole front by Captain Fernald, Seventy-second Ohio infantry, acting aid-de-camp, under a constant fire from the enemy. Chapman was ordered in battery in the open ground about Brice's house, and directed to open upon the enemy over the heads of our men.

Soon after Hoge's brigade was placed in position, the First brigade, Colonel Wilken, came up, the Ninety-fifth Ohio infantry in advance. This regiment was immediately placed in line on the left of the Baldwin road, with instructions to assist the regiments of Hoge's left in holding that road, and to govern itself by the movements of his brigade. The One Hundred and Fourteenth Illinois infantry coming next was placed on the right of Hoge's brigade completing the line to the Guntown road, and relieving the cavalry to that point. The Ninety third Indiana infantry, Colonel Thomas, was placed on the right of the Guntown road, over which it was very evident the enemy was then advancing to attack. The Seventy-second Ohio infantry and Miller's section of the Sixth Indiana battery were posted on an eminence in the rear of Brice's house to keep the enemy from getting possession of a bridge a short distance back and cutting us off. Battery E, First Illinois light artillery, Captain Fitch, and the Ninth Minnesota infantry, Lieutenant-Colonel Marsh commanding, were held in reserve near the cross-roads. Colonel Bouton's brigade of colored troops had charge of the train on that day and had not yet come up.

The arrangements mentioned above had not yet been fully completed before the enemy made a furious attack along the whole line and

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)
hide People (automatically extracted)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
10th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: