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[343] rear. Advancing a six-gun battery at the same time, with a strong infantry support to a commanding elevation on my front and left, and two twenty-pound Parrots in my front, he opened a rapid and vigorous fire of artillery, pushing forward at the same time a strong line of skirmishers under cover of a wood from the column moving past my right.

As the enemy showed no inclination to advance in my front, and my artillery was seriously endangered by the column turning my position, I ordered the artillery and supports to withdraw, following with the remainder of the command. In passing the points where the road on my right entered the Jackson road, the enemy poured a severe volley into Major Stockdale's battalion, acting as a rear-guard.

Colonel Wood's regiment was immediately moved back to his support, but the enemy was so posted as to prevent any effective movement against him.

I then moved my command on the Jackson road, and again took position three-and-a-half miles west of the city, with a broad open field in my front.

Against this the enemy did not advance, but throwing forward an infantry and cavalry force on a road a mile to the left, pushed immediately for Jackson. After an irregular artillery fire at scattering parties of the enemy, I was ordered to withdraw by a lateral road towards the Canton road, the enemy having gained, near nightfall, the road between me and Jackson.

This was done without loss In these various positions taken between Champions Hill and Jackson, and the severe checks given the enemy, I cannot commend too highly the alacrity, courage and steadiness of my officers and men. They could not have acquitted themselves better. On the march from Pearl river to Meridian but one opportunity was offered of striking the enemy. This was at Decatur, and was discovered by a bold reconnoissance in person of the Major-General commanding. The enemy's wagon train halting in the suburbs of the town, I directed Colonel Wood to make a dash at it with two squadrons, which was executed in gallant style, killing and wounding a number of the enemy, and killing the teams of a large number of wagons.

A heavy infantry force in front and rear of the train precluded all hopes of bringing them off. In these various affairs from Champion Hill to Decatur, I sustained a loss of 129 killed, wounded and missing, and 143 horses.

Marching from Alamucha to Starkesville and hence to Canton, I was ordered by General Jackson to pass that place, then occupied by the


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