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[79] this affair. From the official reports of the enemy, captured afterwards, it appeared that I fought a greatly superior force, and killed and wounded a great number. I cannot pay too high a tribute to the alacrity, steadiness, and splendid bravery of Greene's brigade and Monroe's regiment, nor compliment the artillery of Lieutenants Zimmerman and Miller more fittingly than in the enemy's own language, who complained that our ‘artillerists must have measured the ground before the battle.’ The enemy's design of crossing here was now made fully manifest.

Shelby was enabled to join me on the evening of that day without molestation, and again my whole force was united. No forage being in the vicinity of the ferry, I was compelled to withdraw my main force on the morning of the 5th to the south side of Prairie d'anne, on the Washington road, about sixteen miles from the ferry. Here I had breastworks of logs and small earthworks thrown up with which to deceive the enemy into the belief that I would here give him battle. This day my outpost, Greene's regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel Campbell, skirmished heavily with him, and again on the 6th. On the 7th the enemy continued to advance slowly, my advance, under Captain Porter, of Burbridge's regiment; skirmishing with him the entire day. General Price now arrived with Dockery and Crawford's brigades and Woods's battalion, and took command. Cabell's brigade was taken from me and placed in Fagan's division. On the 8th the enemy again advanced, driving Captain Porter with my outpost to the northeast edge of the prairie. Greene's brigade was then relieved from outpost duty by troops of Fagan's division.

On the evening of the 9th, the enemy having been reinforced by Thayer's division from Fort Smith, four thousand strong, cavalry, infantry and artillery, marched upon the outposts of our army under General Dockery, drove them in, and was preparing to flank General Shelby's camp when he evacuated it, and being ordered to keep in the enemy's front, threw his force into line of battle across the Elkin's Ferry and Washington and Camden roads, ordered Dockery to protect his flank, and attacked the advancing enemy. The picket fighting soon assumed heavy proportions. The enemy moved up and opened upon Shelby with fifteen pieces of artillery, and continued to advance, but the resistance was as dogged as their advance was overwhelming. The section of Collins's battery, under the immediate command of Captain Collins, with almost unexampled courage, held the column of the enemy at bay, while the brigade swept from flank to flank, by the fierce fire of artillery and small arms, budged

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