War of the Rebellion: Serial 010 Page 0696 Chapter XXII. KY.,TENN.,N.MISS.,N.ALA.,AND SW. VA.

Search Civil War Official Records

I had occasion during the day to witness the performance of the reserve and to visit the skirmishers, and know the dangers encountered, and I must say that the men and officers of the regiment discharged their duties well; and i make particular mention of Captains Smith and McCampbell and Lieutenants Parrish and Wolcott and Lieutenant William Rice, Second Lieutenant James McCampbell, and Second Lieutenant B. M Chiles, and of their companies, for gallant bearing in that fiercely contested skirmish. Major Buckner and Adjt. John Brennan were present during the entire engagement, and rendered me valuable service by the prompt obedience of my orders and the ready and fearless assistance in bearing orders about over the field and in aiding in command of the skirmishers. Dr. Curran was present during the entire engagement, and, with the assistance of Dr. Cox, was able to give every attention to the wounded. Our number killed in this skirmish was 1 and wounded 5.

We returned to our camp, and were not called to meet the enemy again until the 28th of May, when our brigade was ordered forward upon a reconnaissance to the front of General Nelson's line. When we reached a position near the enemy's pickets our brigade, being in front, was drawn up in line of battle, skirmishers were thrown out among them (two companies, A and B, of my regiment), and were moved forward, the rest of the brigade following up and occupying eligible positions to support them. The two companies of our skirmishers of my regiment were put under command of Major Buckner and moved forward to the left. These two companies, together with Company B, Second Kentucky, advanced under cover of timber until they found the enemy, who was in heavy force in a dense wood, separated from our position by a large open field, except by a small strip of timber, which connected the position of our skirmishers with that of the enemy. There was also a small and heavily-timbered swamp, which connected the wood occupied by the enemy and which entered the open field at right angles to our line of skirmishers, but was disconnected with our position, and if in the possession of the enemy would have afforded excellent cover for a flank movement, and would have commanded our rear when we advanced. Lieutenant-Colonel Carey, of the Thirty-sixth Indiana Regiment, who seemed to have had command of the skirmishers, ordered Major Buckner to take one company of his regiment and drive the enemy from this swamp and hold it. He, in accordance with this order, moved Company A, of my regiment, consisting of about 30 men, rank and file, in double-quick time, into the swamp, receiving a heavy volley from the enemy at the moment of entering. He found and drove out a force of about 100 men without loss. The enemy certainly lost 1 in killed, besides a number of wounded and 2 prisoners.

General Crittenden sent two companies of the Nineteenth Ohio to the relief of Major buckner held his position and managed his men well. He and his men deserve great credit for the manner in which they drove back the enemy and held them in check. The other eight companies of our regiment, when the two companies were sent forward, were ordered to the right across an open field into a swamp densely wooded, with direction to take position on the far side of it, to support the skirmishers under Captain Wheeler. The skirmishers moving to the right had advanced under orders to the bridge in the main Corinth road over Bridge Creek, with directions to take and hold it