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[158] army corps, each followed by its own transportation, forming a column about twenty miles long, which precluded rapid mutual support.

On the 8th of April, the gallant and skilful General, deeming him self sufficiently reinforced, and perceiving that an occasion was offered to strike a telling blow, made his dispositions to fight in disobedience of orders, and as he said to Colonel Debray, during the action, ‘with a rope around his neck.’ General Green's cavalry, recalled from the front, was ordered to dismount and to act as infantry, Debray's regiment being kept mounted and held in reserve. The Federal cavalry corps was promptly dispersed in great confusion; the Thirteenth army corps, after a short contest, was utterly routed; but the Nineteenth corps, fresh in the fight, while our troops were getting exhausted, offered a stubborn resistance. Then, Debray's regiment was deployed, and took part in a bloody engagement, protracted till dark, which resulted in driving the enemy in disorder. Our losses were heavy in killed and wounded. In the regiment, Lieutenant Willis, of Company F, was among the dead. Twenty-five hundred prisoners, twenty pieces of artillery, several stands of colors, many thousands of small arms, and two hundred and fifty wagons loaded with supplies of all kinds, were the trophies of this handsome victory.

The pursuit was immediately assumed by General Green's cavalry corps, which picked up many stragglers. But our progress was checked, at the crossing of a creek, by a brisk musketry fire directed against us from the darkness of night. A halt was ordered till daybreak, which delay was gladly availed of to obtain much needed food and feed. The march was resumed without opposition, and early in the morning of the 9th, our cavalry was crowning the heights which overlook Pleasant Hill, where the enemy was descried in order of battle. Our infantry, some of whom—the Missouri and Arkansas divisions—were exhausted by a forced march of forty-five miles from Keachi, was far behind, and nothing could be done until it had come up.

At about 4 o'clock P. M., the action began. Our right, which was to flank the enemy's left, misled by its guide, struck the enemy's front, and was repulsed with severe loss. Meanwhile, our left was driving the Federals from their advanced positions. General Green, believing that they were routed, ordered Debray's and Bushel's regiments, heretofore kept in reserve, to charge to Pleasant Hill. The charge started in splendid style, was broken with heavy loss of men

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