The governor with his staff and Gen. David R. Atchison
rode at the head of the column with General Rains
About five miles from Lamar
they learned that Sigel
had left Carthage
and was on his way to give them battle.
Hardly had they halted when the glint of the Federal
bayonets showed them the enemy on the other side of a creek.
The governor formed his men in line of battle with Weightman
's brigade on the right, then Bledsoe
's battery, and then Slack
's battery was on the left of Slack
, and next to him was Kelly
's regiment and then Burbridge
The right flank was covered by Rains
' mounted men under Brown
The Federals, about 2,000 strong, with seven pieces of artillery, advanced with the steadiness and precision of veterans.
opened the fight with his artillery, firing across the creek.
's three guns replied, and almost at the same time Guibor
's battery opened.
The artillery fight lasted for half an hour or more, when the mounted men on both flanks of the governor's army maneuvered as if to surround Sigel
, and at the same time Weightman
's and Slack
's infantry advanced rapidly.
The engagement was sharp and decisive.
fell back in good order and took a new position well defended by his artillery.
reformed his line, opened fire with Bledsoe
's battery, and with his own brigade and Slack
's infantry pressed Sigel
's line hard.
The fighting at this point was stubborn for a while, but Clark
bringing their forces to bear, Sigel
gave way and was soon in full retreat.
Nor did he stop, except temporarily at Carthage
to get his wagon train out of the way, until he had put forty miles between him and the enemies whom he expected to capture without a fight.
The honors of the battle belonged to Weightman
's brigade, Slack
's command, Shelby
's mounted company and Bledsoe
lost 40 or 50 killed and about 120 wounded. The loss of the enemy was estimated as twice as large.
The fight was known as the battle of Carthage