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[336] the pursuit was continued, but necessarily with caution, as Forrest's force was known to be yet superior to ours.

When near Holly Springs, reliable information was brought in that the enemy's main column, reenforced by Ferguson's division, had left the Taylor plantation, twelve miles west from Holly Springs, and were yet moving south, having ten hours start of us. The pursuit was here abandoned, and our column, tired out by nearly two weeks of unceasing active service, turned back, and moved by easy stages toward Collierville and Memphis.

It is known that, on the seventh instant, the entire rebel force was near Camden, Miss. It is likely they will remain there until they eat up the two hundred beeves they stole in this raid. There can be no doubt that if General Hurlbut's orders had been properly executed at La Fayette, Forrest and his whole force would now have been our prisoners.

During the fight at Summerville, between the Seventh Illinois cavalry and a part of Richardson's troops, Colonel Prince, in trying to rally his men, became separated from the main body, and, after the regiment had cut its way out, managed to pass through the enemy's lines and escape alone to Summerville. At that place he was concealed by a Union citizen, and at night was guided between the rebel pickets, and arrived safely at La Grange. A number of his men were also concealed and fed for two or three days by citizens of the same town, and were assisted in making their way through the rebel pickets by the same true-hearted patriots.

Lieutenant McIntire, of the Ninth Illinois cavalry, relates that just as the fight near Summerville commenced he arrived on the ground with a despatch from General Grierson to Colonel Prince. Finding himself surrounded and unable to escape, he sprang from his horse and crawled under a house; but fearing that this might not be a safe place, he crept to a cottongin, a short distance off. In the gin he found a large heap of cotton-seed. Jumping into the heap, he covered himself with the seed, so as to have only his head out, over which he pulled a basket. Here the lieutenant was feeling comparatively safe, when an officer of the Seventh bulged in the door, with a dozen rebels at his heels. The officer ran up-stairs and hid under some loose boards in the floor.

The rebels put a guard around the house, and began a vigorous search. Up-stairs and down they went several times, and every hiding-place but the right one was examined. They knew that the officer was there some place, and they were determined to have him. Presently, the heap of cotton-seed caught their attention, and forthwith they began plunging their sabres into it. The heap was probed in all directions, but providentially without touching the Lieutenant's body. At last, one of them, exasperated beyond endurance at their ill-success, vented his anger on the basket over the Lieutenant's head, by striking it a furious blow with the sword. Had the latter not kept a vigorous hold to the handle, it would have been knocked a rod. Just then some occurrence outside caused them to hurry away, and both officers escaped.

In the great hurry in which the rebels made their crossing at La Fayette, there was necessarily much confusion and straggling. By some means an officer of Forrest's staff became separated from the main column, and after our occupation of the place he came riding up in the dark and inquired for headquarters. The sentinel pointed out the house just occupied by General Grierson. Starting in the direction indicated, he was encountered by Major Starr of the Seventh Illinois, to whom he repeated the inquiry. “What headquarters?” asked the Major. “Why, d — n it, General Forrest's, of course,” replied the rebel. “This way, then,” said the Major, and to his unspeakable surprise he was escorted to the presence of General Grierson.

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