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[78] and there fought with a valor worthy the emulation of the bravest. Captain Thorpe, of Elliott's battalion, the advance, charged with his company through a regiment of Federal infantry, scattering them to the four winds. He received a severe though not mortal wound in that charge.

Placing a sufficient force at Elkin's Ferry to hold in check any further advance until it could be reinforced, Cabell's and Greene's brigades were camped so as to reach in time any of the fords yet liable to be crossed by the main body of the Federal army. The 3d of April was passed by the enemy in closing up to the river with his main force. His point of crossing was not yet ascertained, and Burbridge's regiment of Greene's brigade, under Lieutenant-Colonel Preston, was thrown forward to make a forced reconnoissance at Elkin's Ferry. Late in the day, after having driven in the advanced posts on the south side of the river with sharp skirmishing, the enemy was discovered in heavy masses. Yet during that day his main body still remained on the north bank. His slow, changeful marches, his seeming indecision were inexplicable, until Shelby's cannon were heard in his rear. On the morning of the 3d, Shelby had again attacked his rear-guard, when finding that it was being heavily reinforced, and closing its flanks around his small force, he withdrew in good order. In these actions General Shelby fought his brigade entirely mounted, and, time and again, the irresistible charge of his line thoroughly demoralized and completely routed the long and serried lines of the enemy's infantry, causing them great loss in killed, wounded and prisoners, while Collins's battery did most effective service, and almost exceeded its usual superlative excellence in the accuracy of the fire and the devoted bravery of the company.

On the 4th, as afterward appeared, Steele commenced crossing his main army. Having concentrated Greene and Cabell in front of the ferry, posted the main portion of Cabell's brigade as a reserve on a naturally strong position at the edge of the bottom, with Greene's brigade, Colonel Greene commanding, one piece of Blocker's battery, under Lieutenant Zimmerman, Monroe's regiment, Colonel S. C. Monroe commanding, and a section of Hughey's battery under Lieutenant Miller, of Cabell's brigade, twelve hundred in all, I advanced and attacked the enemy, to finally determine if he intended to cross his whole force here, and to relieve Shelby. The troops were rapidly formed, and the attack quickly and vigorously made, which resulted in my driving the enemy two miles before he could mass his forces against me. Lieutenant Fackler of my staff was captured in



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Dana Greene (10)
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