were compelled to fall back a short distance and leave the guns captured, which was done in good order, our men contesting the ground. It was impossible in this charge to keep in order of battle. Such was the density of the thicket through which we passed, the rapidity of the charge, and the enthusiasm of the soldiers, that the regiments became mixed together, and when we retired behind the Eleventh Brigade, which in the mean time had been ordered to our support, I could not collect all the men of the regiment under my command. Many of them got into other regiments, and rendered good service, as I am informed, during the day.
In this, what may in truth be called a most brilliant and daring charge, I am gratified to be able to say that the regiment under my command, which went into it with only about 270 men, officers and all, with perhaps a few dishonorable exceptions, acted a most gallant part. The men generally behaved with great bravery, considering it was the first engagement in which many of them had ever been, and the company officers, so far as they came under my observation, acted with great coolness and bravery. Major John L. Davidson, who behaved with most undaunted bravery, was killed instantly on the field while cheering the men on to the charge, as was First Lieutenant Higdon, of Company F, who fell early in the charge while cheering his men onward. Several of the company officers were wounded while gallantly urging their men forward. Their names will appear among the list of killed and wounded which will be inclosed herewith. After we were compelled to retire I collected all that I could find of the regiment under my command, the men coming into line very promptly, and by order of General Buell, as I was marching to join our brigade, took a position in rear of the Eleventh Brigade, where we remained for some time, but were afterward ordered forward on what I have heard is the Purdy road, to sustain a battery; but when we got to the battery the enemy was in full retreat, and we bivouacked for the night in a drenching rain.
Although the regiment under my command was not long engaged the loss was quite severe. A list of the names of killed and wounded will be inclosed herewith. The number killed was 7; mortally wounded, 4; severely wounded, 18; wounded, 9, but how I cannot say; slightly wounded, 36; missing, 4; total killed and wounded, 74.* Many were slightly wounded, and now report for duty.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant-Colonel, Comdg. Twenty-sixth Kentucky Vols.
F. J. JONES,
A. A. A. G., Fourteenth Brig., Fifth Div., Army of the Ohio.
CAMP SHILOH, TENN., April 12, 1862.
SIR: As a wrong inference may be drawn from my report, in connection with Colonel Smith's, in relation to a portion of our officers, I beg leave to make an additional report as to the particular company officers in the regiment under my command. Captain Belt and Lieutenant Ranney, of Company A, though worn down by sickness, acted very gallantly during the charge, but I did not see them any more during
*But see revised statement, p. 107.
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