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[390] thousand in less than four hours, about eight hundred of whom were killed, two thousand two hundred wounded, and one thousand prisoners. The corps which suffered most was that of McCook, which had three thousand men disabled out of twelve thousand five hundred men. The losses sustained by the Confederate army, in seeking to repair the error which had kept a portion of its forces from the field, are attested by the official reports. The three divisions which alone sustained all the brunt of the battle had been reduced by their long marches to fifteen thousand combatants; they left on the battle-field of Perryville five hundred and ten killed, two thousand six hundred and thirtyfive wounded, and two hundred and fifty-one prisoners, three thousand three hundred and ninety-six men in all—that is to say, more than one-fourth of their effective force.

One-half of the Federal army, not hearing the sound of musketry, and doubtless attributing the booming of cannon to one of those artillery duels which too frequently took place without cause or results, took no part whatever in the battle. The responsibility of such fatal inaction rests upon the Federal staff; for Buell was not notified until four o'clock of the struggle in which McCook had been engaged since two o'clock. He immediately sent orders to Gilbert, which the latter had anticipated by despatching Crittenden to the scene of action, but this officer only reached the vicinity of the battle-field at dark. The left wing of the Federals had been beaten, the inexperienced soldiers composing it had bravely resisted the attacks of a well-trained adversary, as is proved by their losses, but they quickly exhausted the few cartridges contained in their boxes, and only escaped a complete disorganization by abandoning the greatest portion of the disputed ground. The right, on the contrary, had successfully repelled all the assaults of the enemy. If the battle had commenced earlier, and the general-in-chief been sooner informed, the arrival of Crittenden and Schoepf's division would certainly have changed the issue of the contest.

Buell, however, still adhering to the first plan he had conceived, prepared to assume the offensive on the morning of the 9th, with the two corps of Gilbert and Crittenden, leaving in rear that of McCook, which had suffered so much by the battle

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Perryville (Kentucky, United States) (1)

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Robert McCook (3)
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