regiment and Willis
' battalion December 10th.
On December 19th an expedition set out from Memphis
, about 3,500 cavalry under Grierson
, for the old raiding ground along the Mobile & Ohio railroad. Maj.-Gen. W. T. Martin
, commanding Northwest district, with Colonel Denis
' reserves and 300 State troops, was near Memphis
with their forces, about 800 men, were in the Gulf
district, as also was King
's battery and 500 men under Colonel Wier
had been ordered south, but was called back.
had a camp at Cotton Gin
, collecting dispersed cavalry, Captain Pope
was at Columbus
with about thirty men, and at Macon
's brigade with 250 and Captain Doss
with about thirty men, while Colonel Mabry
, in command of the Northeast
district, had a small force at Corinth
was supposed to be the enemy's objective, and a train in charge of Maj. John S. Hope
, inspectorgen-eral, with 700 infantry and King
's battery, under Lieutenant-Colonel Burke
, from Mobile
, reached West Point
en route to Corinth
December 26th, but found that the enemy was in force near Okolona
, confronted by General Gholson
with about 200 cavalry without ammunition.
, scouting with a locomotive, brought the railroad cars at Okolona
, and 270 men were sent up to Okolona
and posted just south of that place to protect the railroad bridge.
This detachment and Gholson
's fell back to Egypt
on the 27th, before the advance of the enemy.
The fight at Egypt
began on the morning of the next day and resulted in severe loss to the Confederates
, General Gholson
being reported mortally wounded, and several hundred men captured.
The train with the troops was also partly destroyed, though the locomotive and battery escaped.
Reinforcements from Meridian
coming up during the fight, Col. W. W. Wier
, in command, attacked the enemy, who soon afterward retreated to Houston
, leaving 7 dead and 35