regiment mounted, a section of Morton
's battery and one of McCulloch
's regiments on foot, immediately accepted the invitation to the open country, and finding by a few cannon shots that the enemy was very active in retirement, dashed into the rear guard with his mounted cavalry, and reinforced by McCulloch
kept up hot pursuit till night fall.
By this precipitate retreat Smith
demoralized his command, and at Okolona
next morning Forrest
, fully alive to the situation and confident of success, charged with Bell
's brigade and created a regular stampede, one brigade of the enemy abandoning five guns without firing a shot.
then followed, the nature of the country compelling him to dismount his men, driving the Federals
from hill to hill.
Five miles from Okolona
a fierce engagement occurred in which, reinforced by McCulloch
's and Forrest
's brigades, the Confederates
finally were successful, but with considerable loss, Col. Jefferson E. Forrest
, brother of the general, and Lieutenant-Colonel Barksdale
, commanding the Fifth Mississippi, being among the killed.
Ten miles from Pontotoc
command again made a gallant stand, and Forrest
, with only a part of his command up and that nearly out of ammunition, was successful mainly through pluck.
The Fourth Missouri made against Forrest
what he pronounced ‘the grandest cavalry charge I ever witnessed.’
But his Tennesseeans stood firm, and repulsed the attack.
With this the pursuit stopped, except by General Gholson
In this brilliant campaign Forrest
had about 2,500 men engaged.
reported that on account of his impedimenta he could not put more than 5,000 in action.
The Confederate loss was 27 wounded, including Colonels Mc-Culloch
, 97 killed and 20 missing. Smith
reported 47 killed, 152 wounded and 120 missing. He attempted to alleviate his disaster by reporting the destruction of two million bushels of corn, two thousand bales of cotton and thirty miles of railroad, and the capture