HEADQUARTERS U. S. FORCES,
Paducah, Ky., November 6, 1861.
Twenty-third Indiana Regiment, Commanding Expedition:
COLONEL: You will proceed by an easy march with your command to Plumley's Station, on the Mayfield road, to-night, bivouacking there, or proceeding to Viola-preferably the latter- remaining one day, and returning on the third. The First Brigade will move an hour before you on the road to Melvin, and remain there to-night, returning to this place on the third day by the Lovelaceville and Blandville road. Should you get information of an attack on that brigade, move across the country to its assistance; otherwise remain in observation during the day at Viola to check any advance that might be made on General Paine's command. Do not move to attack any force that comes within your neighborhood, except it becomes necessary, absolutely; the purpose for which both commands, are sent out being a demonstration. Keep this order secret.
By order of Brigadier General C. F. Smith;
THOS. J. NEWSHAM
NOVEMBER 8, 1861.
Captain T. J. NEWSHAM, Assistant Adjutant-General:
SIR: We are encamped at Milburn, 31 miles from Paducah. The firing was heard on Columbus all day yesterday, and last night I heard that our troops had taken the batteries on the Missouri side, and that nearly all of the rebels had crossed over there. I sent the scout to the river to communicate with the gunboats, but found that all of the boats and barges had left at dark for Cairo. If the attack had been renewed to-day I should have marched on Columbus. As it is, I am just starting on my return. My soldiers are almost out of provisions. I wish one day's full rations sent to me to-night on the same road I came on. I shall make 20 miles to-day. Be sure and send them, or I shall be out. No accident. All well; some foot-sore.
E. A. PAINE,
HEADQUARTERS FIRST BRIGADE, U. S. FORCES,
Paducah, Ky., November 9, 1861.
Captain NEWSHAM, Assistant Adjutant-General:
SIR: I was ordered by Brigadier General C. F. Smith, commanding at this post to leave here with my brigade at 2 o'clock p.m. on the 6th instant, to proceed to the town of Melvin, some 20 miles nearly south of this place, from thence to return on the third day by the Lovelaceville and Blandville road. In obedience to said order my brigade, consisting of the Ninth, Twelfth, Fortieth, and Forty-firs Illinois Regiments, Buell's battery, and Thielemann's dragoons, left at said time, and marched to Mayfield Creek, on the Clinton road, where we encamped that night. After marching 5 miles on the morning of the 7th instant heard firing at or near Columbus and immediately changed our direction, leaving