War of the Rebellion: Serial 008 Page 0201 Chapter XVIII. PEA RIDGE, OR ELKHORN TAVERN, ARK.

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tremendous fire on the enemy at short range. The Second Missouri Infantry also deployed and earnestly engaged the enemy. About this time the shades of night began to gather around us, but the fire on both sides seemed to grow fierce and more deadly. One of my bodyguard fell dead, my orderly received a shot, and General Asboth was severely wounded in the arms. A messenger came from General Sigel, saying he was close on the left and would soon open fire. The battery of General Asboth ran out of ammunition and fell back. This caused another battery that I had located on the right of the road to follow, this latter fearing a want of support. The infantry, however, stood firm or fell back in good order, and the batteries were soon restored, but the caissons got quite of reach. The artillery firing was renewed, however, and kept up till dark, the enemy firing the last shot, for I could not find another cartridge to give them a final round; even the little howitzers responded, "No cartridges." The enemy ceased firing and I hurried men after the caissons and more ammunition. Meantime I arranged the infantry in the edge of the timber, with fields in front, where they lay on their arms and held the positions for the night. I directed a detail from each company to bring water and provisions, and thus without a murmur these weary soldiers lay and many of them slept within a few yards of the foe, with their dead and wounded comrades scattered around them. Darkness, silence, and fatigue soon secured to the weary broken slumbers and gloomy repose. The day had closed in some reverses on the right, but the left had been unassailed, and the center had driven the foe from the field.

My only anxiety for the fate of the next day was the new front which it was necessary to form by my weary troops. I directed Colonel Davis to withdraw all the remainder of his reserve from the center and move forward so as to occupy the ground on Carr's immediate left. Although his troops had been fighting hard most of the day and displayed great energy and courage, at 12 o'clock at night they commenced their movement to the new position on the battle-field, and they too soon rested on their arms.

Nothing further had been heard from General Sigel's command after the message at dark he was on or near the left. His detour carried him around a brushy portion of the battle-field that could not be explored in the night. About 2 o'clock he reported at my headquarters with his troops, who, he said, were going to their former camps for provisions. The distance to his camp, some 2 miles farther, was so great I apprehended tardiness in the morning, and urged the general to rest the troops where they then were, at my headquarters, and send for provisions, as the other troops were doing. This was readily concurred in, and these troops bivouacked also for the night. The arrangement thus completed to bring all four of my divisions to face a position which had been held in check all the previous day by one, I rested, certain of final success on the coming day.

The sun rose above the horizon before our troops were all in position and yet the enemy had not renewed the attack. I was hardly ready to open fire on him, as the First and Second Divisions had not yet moved into position. Our troops that rested on their arms in the face of the enemy, seeing him in motion, could not brook delay, and the center, under Colonel Davis, opened fire. The enemy replied with terrible energy from new batteries and lines which had been prepared for us during the night. To avoid raking batteries the right wing fell back in good order, but kept up a continuous fire from the new position