ter, and Mr. J. C. Chichester I was enabled to approach, unperceived by the enemy, to within 150 yards of Doolan's house with my command, consisting of 58 non-commissioned officers and privates, and Lieutenant Henderson of Captain Gordon's company. In an orchard near the house a vedette was discovered, and having reason to believe a company of infantry was at or near the house, I immediately ordered a charge. My men dashed over the fence through the orchard, part turning to the left, with the lieutenant, towards the house, part under my immediate command passed on to a corn field to the right and beyond the house. Several shots were fired at us in the orchard and quite a number from the house. Leaving the lieutenant to attack those near the house, I, with the greater portion of my command, pushed on to a corn field, where we discovered 40 or 50 men, with some wagons. The enemy dispersed on our approach, and endeavored to escape through a marsh meadow into thick woods near by. We pursued them, and succeeded in capturing 17-1 captain, 1 lieutenant, 1 sergeant, 3 corporals, and 11 privates. Lieutenant Henderson, with his party, captured near the house 13 privates.
We have taken 30 prisoners of the Thirtieth New York Regiment of Volunteers, 33 muskets, 23 cartridge boxes, and 31 belts, 5 new army wagons and 20 valuable horses, with the harness, and about 120 bushels of excellent corn, ready shucked and in the wagons.
My command escaped unhurt. Of the enemy, 4 were killed and several wounded. The latter escaped in the thick brush.
The force of the enemy was between 50 and 75. All my men, though most of them were for the first time under fire, behaved with great gallantry. I would especially call to your notice the fearless conduct of Lieutenant Henderson and Sergeants Carroll and Sherman, and Private McGraw, of Captain Gordon's company, and Private Jesse Sparkman, of Captain Perrin's company.
To Major Ball, brigade quartermaster, and J. C. Chichester I was greatly indebted, not only for their guidance, but for their valuable assistance and boldness during the brief contest.
My force was composed of details from the companies of Captains Gordon, Perrin, Stone, and Tayloe. Captain Conner's company was on picket, and did not participate in the affair.
In obedience to your orders I have delivered the prisoners into the custody of the provost-marshal at Centerville, and will to-morrow turn over to the proper officer the muskets and cartridge boxes. I have General Johnston's permission to retain the wagons and horses for the use of my command.
I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,
WM. T. SHERMAN,
Major, Second Mississippi Cavalry.
Brigadier General J. E. B. STUART,
Commanding Cavalry Brigade, Army of the Potomac.
HEADQUARTERS CAVALRY BRIGADE,
Camp Qui Vive, November 17, 1861.
I highly commend Major Martin, his officers and men, for this highly creditably affair. Major Ball, of my staff, a participator, speaks in high terms of Major Martin's personal gallantry and prowess, and I respect-