War of the Rebellion: Serial 008 Page 0226 OPERATIONS IN MO., ARK., KANS., AND IND. T. Chapter XVIII.

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Numbers 8. Report of Colonel Nicholas Greusel, Thirty-sixth Illinois Infantry, commanding Second Brigade, First Division.


Camp at Rose Hill, Ark., March 12, 1862.

The following report of the action taken by Second Brigade, First Division, in the engagement of the 6th, 7th, and 8th March is respectfully submitted:

March 6, about 2 o'clock p.m. I received your order to march the brigade from Sugar Creek back to your assistance, and immediately halted the regiments and the batteries on the road and marched them back on the double-quick about 3 miles, where I found you hotly pursued by the enemy. I formed the Thirty-sixth Illinois in line of battle,and then, by your order, fell back slowly about 1 mile, where I reformed four companies in ambush and marched other six companies 1 mile to the west and formed them in line. The enemy having given up the pursuit, I reformed my regiment and returned to camp at Sugar Creek.

March 7 I received your order at 9 o'clock a.m., and marched my command to an open field or farm a little north of Leetown, and formed in the following order: Thirty-sixth Illinois on the left, Hoffmann's battery next on the right, Twelfth Missouri next on the right, and three pieces of Welfley's battery, supported by Company E, Thirty-sixth Illinois, on the extreme right. While forming this line we were surprised with a precipitate retreat of cavalry, but my command stood like veteran soldiers, and just as the enemy made his appearance behind the cavalry 1 opened up a brisk fire from the artillery, which prevented his following up the retreat. Soon after this I directed Lieutenant Bencke's section of Welfley's battery to throw three shells to a high and steep hill on our right and about a mile in advance, which appeared to be occupied by officers, directing the movements of the enemy. These shells dispersed them. After this I threw out Companies B and G of the Thirty-sixth Illinois Volunteers-Company B to skirmish and Company G to cover. These companies soon discovered three regiments of the enemy's infantry lying in ambush and one formed in square, whom they engaged for about fifteen minutes, retiring in good order, but with the loss of 20 wounded-13 in Company G and 7 in Company B. It was during this skirmish that the officer supposed to be General Ben. McCulloch was shot by Peter Pelican, of Company B, Thirty-sixth Illinois Volunteers. I then directed the artillery to fire upon the ambushed enemy, and moved forward the Thirty-sixth Illinois, but the enemy retreated in great confusion, when I retired to my first position. Soon after this I skirmished the woods over an area of a mile square with the Thirty-sixth Illinois and Twelfth Missouri, taking several prisoners, when I received your order, and marched my command to a large field about 2 miles in advance of our position in the morning and to the rear of the enemy, where we remained until midnight, when we marched to the Keetsville road and camped until morning, my command suffering greatly from fatigue, deprivation, and exposure, having had nothing to eat or drink for twenty-four hours, and neither blankets nor shelter during the night.

March 8, about 8 o'clock a.m., I formed my command on the ground you assigned me in the following order: Welfley's battery on the right, joined by the Twelfth Missouri and Hoffmann's battery, and the Thirty-