tion of our forces of all commands for a concerted attack upon the enemy, then understood to have concentrated on the river bank under the shelter of his gunboats, from which at this time an active shelling was being kept up on our advance. My own and other commands came rapidly forward, but, many regiments having entirely exhausted their ammunition a halt of some time was necessary for the purpose of replenishing.
The day was now far advanced, and before proper preparations were made darkness prevented further operations that day, and all commands were withdrawn for the night out of range of the shells from the enemy's gunboats.
The First Brigade was moved forward at an early hour, and came into action at 8.30 a.m., and was continually employed during the entire day; ordered first to support the left flank of the forces already engaged and subsequently to support the left flank of the forces already engaged and subsequently to support the extreme right. It was at this time that Brigadier-General Johnson had one-half of his command (the One hundred and fifty-fourth Tennessee and Blythe's Mississippi, with a section of Polk's battery) detached from his brigade, by an order from General Bragg, and placed in action on the right. Blythe's Mississippi advanced to the left and attacked the enemy, and, wheeling to the right, drove one of the enemy's batteries, with its support, from its position; but as it advanced upon the enemy Colonel Blythe was shot dead from his horse while gallantly leading his regiment forward to the charge. Within a few minutes of his fall Lieutenant Colonel D. L. Herron and Captain R. H. Humphreys, of the same regiment, both officers of merit, were mortally wounded, and the command devolved on Major James Moore, under whose direction the regiment was actively engaged during the remainder of the day and through the subsequent action of the 7th.
This regiment at all time eminently manifested the high spirit which has always characterized the soldiers of Mississippi and no braver soldier than its heroic leader was lost to our cause. The One hundred and fifty-fourth, Second, and Fifteenth Tennessee all rendered the most effective service.
The One hundred and fifty-fourth Tennessee advanced to the right, with a section of Polk's battery, attacked the enemy, driving his infantry from its position, and captured four pieces of his artillery, and, pursuing for 400 yards, succeeded in capturing two additional pieces. About this time Brigadier-General Johnson was severely wounded and forced to retire from the field. In the management of his brigade he had displayed the soundest judgment and skill, and the temporary loss of his services is very unfortunate. The command of this brigade now fell to Colonel Smith, who reunited the regiments and engaged the enemy with his whole command during the remainder of the day, participating prominently in the final rout of the enemy and the movement toward the river at the close of the day.
For a detailed statement of the operations of this brigade reference is made to the reports of Brigadier-General Johnson and Colonel Smith, copies of which are herewith inclosed.
At the close of the day a part of my command remained on the field and a portion of it returned to our encampment of the night previous.
At an early hour on the morning of the 7th instant I received orders from Major-General Polk in person to form that part of my command then in the rear and move forward to the scene of the previous day's engagement. I immediately formed the One hundred and fifty-fourth, the Sixth,and six companies of the Ninth Tennessee Regi-