command as many streets running at right angles with the river as I possibly could, and engaged the enemy at once, driving him toward the river, after a spirited engagement of two hours. Having fired the last gun at the retreating enemy, I was then ordered to withdraw my regiment from the town, which order I promptly obeyed.
The enemy's loss, after crossing the river, in the engagement with my regiment, is estimated to be over 200 killed, in the engagement with my regiment, is estimated to be over 200 killed and wounded. I refer you to the report already furnished you of the loss which we sustained.* Captain J. L. Clark was killed by a solid shot early in the morning. He was a promising young officer. Captain T. W. Thurman was dangerously wounded later in the day, fell in the hands of the enemy, and, in all probability, is dead. Lieutenant J. M. Stovall is missing, and is supposed to be killed.
I wish to call your attention to the gallant and meritorious conduct of Captain G. L. Donald, who had immediate command of several companies, which did fine execution, without sustaining serious loss. I wish also to make mention of the coolness, bravery, and soldier-like conduct of both officers and enlisted men of my command.
J. W. CARTER,
Colonel, Commanding Thirteenth Mississippi Regiment.
No. 283. Reports of Lieutenant Colonel John C. Fiser, Seventeenth Mississippi Infantry.
NEAR FREDERICKSBURG, VA., December 19, 1862.
SIR: I have the honor of submitting the following report of the action of the Seventh Regiment Mississippi Volunteers while defending the passage of the Rappahannock, opposite the city of Fredericksburg, on the morning of December 11, 1862:
Being ordered to the city on picket duty, on the 9th instant was ordered to dispose of my regiment so as to guard the river from the ferry to a point about three-quarters of a mile below. I promptly made such disposition as I thought would check the enemy if he attempted to force a passage at or between either point indicated. The line of pickets consisted of two wings, the right commanded by Captain A. R. Govan and the left by Captain A. J. Pulliam. The reserve I stationed at the market-house.
About 11 p.m. of the 10th instant your ordered me to double my pickets, which was promptly done by sending to the right wing Companies I and K, and to the left Companies H and C, and about 4 a.m. of the 11th instant you, in person, ordered me with my reserve, consisting of Companies D, E, G, and part of F, to repair at once to the upper ford, as the enemy were rapidly putting in their pontoons preparatory to crossing. I reached the point as soon as possible, and on getting there found the enemy busily working on the bridge, having extend it about 30 feet on the water. On reaching this point I relieve Captain Pulliam and assumed command in person, you having left it discretionary with me when to begin the attack. I immediately made such disposition of the seven companies as I thought would be most effective. Knowing there were many families occupying the houses on the margin
*Not found; but see pp.558,583.