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[139] thorough readiness and plain purpose to fight it out made General Shelby, who was in command, feel that we would cost more than our worth. He drew off at two P. M., and at four P. M., Lieutenant-Colonel Beveridge, Seventeenth Illinois cavalry, with five hundred men of his command, came to our rescue from General McNeil, at Rolla. Strong cavalry pickets were at once posted on four roads occupied by the enemy north of our encampment, and were pushed out more than a mile. At midnight, leaving an hundred men to occupy Harrison and reinforce the pickets if necessary, and to destroy the few stores left in the train unissued, I withdrew my command and marched for Rolla. On arriving at St. James, twelve miles from Rolla, at noon Sunday, the infantry were sent to that post by railroad. Next day I turned over my infantry and cavalry, worn out with toil and watching, to General McNeil, to garrison Rolla — where-upon he marched with his cavalry and that of General Sanborn, and my battery, to the defense of Jefferson City. Tuesday I got an escort of forty men, and passing in the rear of the enemy, reached St. Louis, with the members of my staff, Wednesday night.

Our loss at Pilot Knob was about two hundred, killed, wounded, and missing; and in the several engagements on the retreat to Rolla, about one hundred and fifty more. Of the missing, the most were cut off in detachments, and escaped capture, so that our whole actual loss was about one hundred and fifty killed and wounded, and fifty captured and paroled.

Among our severely wounded were, Lieutenant Smith Thompson, Fourteenth Iowa, and Lieutenant John Fessler, First infantry, Missouri State Militia, and Lieutenant John Braden, Fourteenth Iowa, since dead. Major Wilson, Third Cavalry, Missouri State Militia, after being wounded, was captured on Pilot Knob, and subsequently, with six of his gallant men, was brutally murdered by order of General Price's Field Officer of the day.

The rebel loss at Pilot Knob, killed and wounded, exceeded fifteen hundred, as is shown by the enclosed letter of Surgeon T. W. Johnson, who was left there in charge of our hospital, and also by corroborating testimony gathered since our re-occupation of the post. In the hospital at Ironton, on the twelfth instant, there fell into our hands Colonel Thomas, Chief of General Fagan's staff, three Majors, seven Captains, twelve Lieutenants, and two hundred and four enlisted men (representing seventeen regiments and four batteries), all dangerously and nearly all mortally wounded. The rest of the rebel wounded who were not able to follow the army, were sent south by General Price, under escort of Colonel Rain's regiment. As to the loss of the enemy in the pursuit and at Harrison, I have no information.

To the officers commanding the several detachments, to wit: Colonel Thomas C. Fletcher, Forty-seventh Missouri infantry; Captain Win. J. Campbell, Fourteenth Iowa infantry; Captain Wm. C. Montgomery, Second Missouri artillery; Lieutenant John Fessler, First infantry, Missouri State Militia; Captain Robert L. Lindsay, Thirtieth Missouri infantry; Captain A. P. Wright, Second cavalry, Missouri State Militia, and also Major H. H. Williams, Tenth Kansas; Captain Charles S. Hills, Tenth Kansas; Captain H. B. Milks, Third cavalry, Missouri State Militia; Lieutenant David Murphy, Forty-seventh Missouri infantry, and Surgeon S. D. Carpenter, of my staff, and to Sergeant Daniel Flood, Third Missouri State Militia, who fired the magazine, I am indebted for an intelligent and thorough discharge of duty which contributed largely to our success. The-officers and men of the old troops, without known exception, and those of the new, with rare exceptions, behaved with splendid gallantry, and showed extraordinary will and power of endurance. Nearly an hundred citizens of Pilot Knob and Ironton (among whom were General McCormick, Colonel Lindsay, Captain Leper, Major Emerson, and other well-known gentlemen), organized and commanded by Captain P. F. Lonergan, First infantry, Missouri State Militia, fought and worked well. A colored man, named Charles Thurston, organized and commanded a company of negroes, who also eagerly bore a large share of labor and danger. Before concluding my report, I owe it to the cherished memory of Major James Wilson to make honorable mention of his name, not only because of the nerve and skill with which for two days preceding the assault he embarrassed and delayed the overwhelming forces of the enemy, but also because of his long and useful service in the district, unblemished by a fault.

I have the honor to be,

Very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

Thomas Ewing, Jr., Brigadier-General.

A National account.

St. Louis, October 6.
Your correspondent is enabled to lay before the readers of the Gazette a full and authentic account of the operations of Brigadier-General Tom Ewing, Jr., since he left the city on Saturday night, September twenty-fourth, until he returned last evening with the news of victory sparkling on his laurels. These operations embrace a reconnoissance in force, a successful battle with overwhelming numbers, and a retreat which for masterly accomplishment stands unrivalled, save and except by the great retreat of Sigel in this State, in 1861. These, together with a constant succession of skirmishes, ambuscades, and forced marches, distinguished this brief but brilliant campaign, and make it what it must ever be, one of the most remarkable and eventful of the war. By it Ohio, “the bright particular star” of the West achieves fresh honors at the hands of another of her brave and skillful sons.

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