War of the Rebellion: Serial 008 Page 0257 Chapter XVIII. PEA RIDGE, OR ELKHORN TAVERN, ARK.

Search Civil War Official Records

Colonel Vandever; Twenty-fourth Missouri Volunteers, Colonel Boyd; Dubuque battery, Captain Hayden; third battalion of the Third Illinois Cavalry, under Majors Ruggles, McConnell, and Captain Maus.

With his command I started from Lebanon, Mo., on the 10th of February, and arrived at Marshfield on the 12th, where the whole army had assembled. On the 13th we marched within 8 miles of Springfield, I leading the advance on the direct road, and my advance of cavalry, under Major McConnell, together with Major Bowen and Colonel Wright's cavalry, and the mountain howitzers, under Captain Stephens, skirmished the enemy during the latter part of the day's march. I placed a picket of four companies, Third Illinois Cavalry, a mile and a half in advance, at the fort of the road, immediately after arriving in camp. This picket was attacked by the enemy, but gallantly held its ground and drove the enemy away. The next morning at 4 o'clock my division took the advance in the direction of Springfield. Upon arriving 5 miles from Springfield, before daylight in the morning, I halted to wait for the other divisions to come up and deploy, but a company of the Fourth Iowa, which had been thrown forward as skirmishers, did not receive the orders to halt, but marched into Springfield and took it, with some prisoners and stores, the enemy having evacuated in the night.

The next day the Third and Fourth Divisions moved on to McCulla's Store, 29 miles. The next day my division led. The cavalry advance, composed of the Third Illinois Cavalry, the cavalry of the Third Division, and the mountain howitzers, overtook the rear guard of the enemy's artillery and infantry on Flat Creek, and brought them to bay. The Dubuque battery was brought up, and under the personal supervision of the general fired upon the enemy, doing him considerable damage, but the infantry could not come up until it was too late to pursue any farther.

The next day the Third Division led, preceded by all the cavalry, including the Third Illinois. They had a skirmish after passing Keetsville, and in Cross Timber Hollow a party with Colonel Davis, commanding Third Division, who went forward to reconnoiter, consisting of three companies of the Third Illinois Cavalry and about a company of the First Missouri, charged the enemy's pickets and ran them to their camp, my men having several men and horses wounded and 1 horse killed.

The next day, my division leading, with Ellis', Wright's, and McConnell's cavalry, came upon the enemy at Sugar Creek. The general ordered a charge of cavalry, which was gallantly executed, supported by the mountain howitzers under Major Bowen, who was wounded in the wrist. My cavalry, though in rear of the column, advanced well up by flanking to the left, and did considerable execution. I came on as rapidly as possible with the Second Brigade, under Colonel Vandever, and opened with the Dubuque battery, Captain Hayden, the enemy having made a stand about a mile and a half from the creek. He was quite obstinate, and showed some good artillery practice at our battery, disabling two horses, but Captain Hayden finally drove him away, and we camped where we were, I have since learned that the enemy had come to that point from Cross Hollow to assist Price and intended to fight us there, but that his heart failed him and he retreated in considerable confusion before my Second Brigade, and that if we had pursued at that time we might have routed him and done him considerable damage; but the positive order of the general, based upon the reason that it was too late in the day to go as far as Cross Hollow and

17 R-VOL VIII