War of the Rebellion: Serial 008 Page 0785 Chapter XVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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guns. No person hurt. I have just returned from Tiptonville, and will endeavor to carry out your orders without friend or foe knowing it.

J. P. McCOWN,

Brigadier-General.

HEADQUARTERS,

Madrid Bend, March 16, 1862.

Major General LEONIDAS POLK:

GENERAL: I received your dispatch with Colonel Jordan's letter. I will, if possible, execute your instructions. My experience in that line makes me tremble for the result. The gunboats are now off the point dropping down.

Respectfully, yours, &c.,

J. P. McCOWN,

Brigadier-General.

(Copy to General Beauregard.)

MARCH 17, 1862. (Received 7 p. m.)

Colonel PICKETT:

Over 600 shot and shell thrown at us yesterday. No person hurt. They will soon open for to-day.

McCOWN.

HEADQUARTERS,

Madrid Bend, March 17, 1862-6 p. m.

Colonel PICKETT:

Three gunboats lashed together dropped down to range of Battery Numbers 1. Opened heavy fire upon it-mortar boats [3] and other gun-boats at long range. The battery has returned the fire splendidly. Lieutenant Clark and 2 men killed; 10 wounded. Captain Rucker, Colonel Steedman, General Trudeau have behaved gallantly, as well as all the men. Don't know what damage done them. Yet firing.

J. P. McCOWN,

Major-General, Commanding.

MADRID BEND, March 17, 1862.

Colonel THOMAS JORDAN:

DEAR COLONEL: Nearly ever since my arrival here, over two weeks, I have had the enemy in my front and flank.

I am satisfied that the force at New Madrid is not less than 30,000 men, or maybe thirty regiments, with artillery and cavalry.

General Sherman ("Cump"), I believe, commands the force with the fleet. Over 600 shot and shell were thrown at us yesterday. They will soon have heavy guns in New Madrid. They are building a railroad to that place from Sikeston. The gunboats of Commodore Hollins have done all they could. I abandoned New Madrid because it involved a constant loss of life to hold it. It was of no use, with Point

50 R R-VOL VIII