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[77] enemy falls back stubbornly into a wood across the field, resolving to retire no further. Now the Confederates charge the wood. The lines of Carr cannot stand; they retire, as Colonel Little said, ‘compelled to seek refuge in the obscurity of the forest.’

Col. Henry Little's report is the story of the action of his brigade of Missouri volunteers. If the whole battle could be described as he pictures the action of that brigade, it would stand revealed as in a photograph. His account, which is here reproduced, is clear and unimpassioned—no boasting, no criticism—a plain narrative which carries with it the conviction of its truthfulness in every word. It rivals any description of Xenophon's ‘March to the Sea,’ or of ‘Livy's pictured page.’

The brigade . . marched from bivouac at Elm Springs early on the morning of March 6th, and proceeded on the road to Bentonville. In compliance with orders issued from headquarters on the previous evening, Colonel Gates' regiment of cavalry led the advance of the whole army. On reaching Bentonville the smoke of burning stores and dwellings indicated the presence of the enemy (Sigel and his Germans), whose rear guard abandoned the town as Colonel Gates' cavalry entered. From information subsequently received, it is believed that this body of troops was General Sigel's division, numbering from 5,000 to 7,000 men. Colonel Gates, pressing upon the retreating enemy, engaged his rear guard a short distance beyond the town on the Springfield road. Here, besides the capture of prisoners and a baggage-wagon laden with arms and ammunition, our cavalry killed and wounded several of the enemy and compelled the main body to continue its retreat, pursuing it until dark. The other regiments of the brigade, occupying their respective positions in the line, came into camp late in the afternoon and proceeded to prepare supper, having received orders to resume the line of march at 8 o'clock on the same evening. Colonel Gates' cavalry having rejoined the brigade, the Second regiment under Colonel Burbridge was detailed for the advance.

At 8 o'clock our line of march was resumed, and continued

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Bentonville, Ark. (Arkansas, United States) (2)
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