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 fierce combat took place in the forest, which covered the whole hill. Little's Confederate division gallantly endeavored to carry this position. It was unshaken by the losses it sustained. Its chief was killed and its ranks thinned. It nevertheless reached the summit of the hill, where the Federal battery was posted. A large number of dead horses were strewn upon the ground; the majority of the gunners were wounded and the guns captured by the Confederates, who were driving their adversaries before them. But the rest of Hamilton's division, hastening to the sound of battle, at last surmounted all the obstacles of the road. It regained some advantage over the Confederates, and several of the spiked guns were recaptured in the midst of the dead bodies which surrounded them. The efforts of the enemy to turn first the right, then the left, of the dominant position of the Federals were repulsed. In the woods the fighting was desperate. The growing darkness increased the confusion without abating the violence of the struggle. Finally, the battle gradually ceased, and each man waited for the ending of that dismal night in the position he occupied, under a drenching rain, and surrounded by the wounded, whose cries were heard, but whom it was impossible to find in the brushwood. Hamilton's division, which was scarcely three thousand strong, had lost one hundred and thirtyfive killed and five hundred and twenty-seven wounded, but only twenty-six prisoners. The losses of Price, who had all the time maintained the offensive, must have been much greater. He had not been entirely successful. Despite their numerical superiority, the two divisions he had brought on the battle-field had been unable to crush the head of Rosecrans' long column. The vigorous resistance of Sullivan's brigade—a resistance favored by the woods which covered the country and made of every road a natural defile—had kept the Confederates in check. But the combination formed for the purpose of surrounding them had failed; Rosecrans' position was extremely critical, and the Fulton road, which he had not been able to seize, remained under the control of Price. The latter hastened to turn this advantage to account to evacuate Iuka, for he knew that Ord would attack him in his turn the next morning. This general had waited in vain the whole
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