burned a railroad train of ammunition, baggage, and subsistence, delayed there some forty-eight hours by mismanagement. I regret to add that the enemy also burned the railroad depot, in which were at the moment a number of dead bodies and at least four sick soldiers of this army, who were consumed - an act of barbarism scarcely credible and without a precedent to my knowledge in civilized warfare. Upon the opportune appearance in a short time, however, of an interior force of our cavalry, the enemy left in great haste and confusion after having received one volley. Only one of our men was carried away by him. Quite a considerable number of stragglers and of our sick and convalescents, en route to Southern hospitals, who for a few moments had fallen into the enemy's hands, were rescued. These are the 2,000 men untruthfully reported by Generals Pope and Halleck to their War Department as captured and paroled on that occasion.
I desire to record that one Colonel Elliott, of the Federal Army, commanded in this raid, and is responsible for the cruel death of our sick. As for the 10,000 stands of small-arms also reported by those officers as destroyed, the truth is that not to exceed 1,500 mostly inferior muskets, were lost on that occasion.
I had intimations of this expedition the day before the evacuation, and had detached immediately suitable commands of infantry and cavalry to foil its purpose and protected the bridges on the line of my march. Unfortunately the infantry passed through and south of Booneville but a little while before the enemy made his descent; the cavalry, as before said, reached there in time only to rescue our men who had been captured.
Equally inaccurate, reckless, and unworthy are the statements of these Federal commanders in their several official by telegraph, bearing dates of May 30 and 31, and June 1,2, and 4, as published in Cincinnati and Chicago journals, touching the amount of property and stores destroyed by as at Corinth and General Pope's alleged pressing pursuit. Major-General Halleck's dispatch of June 4 may particularly be characterized as disgracefully untrue. Possibly, however, he was duped by his subordinate. Nothing, for example, can be wider from the truth than that 10,000 men and 15,000 small-arms of this army were captured or lost in addition to those destroyed at Booneville. Some 500 inferior small-arms were accidently left by convalescents in a camp 4 miles south of Corinth. No artillery of any description was lost; no clothing; no tents worth removal were lefty standing. In fine, the letters of newspaper correspondents, inclosed, give a correct statement both as to the conduct of the retreat, the scanty spoils of war left behind, the actual barrenness of substantial to the enemy, and exhibit his doubt, perplexity, and ignorance concerning the movements of this army.
Baldwin was found to offer no advantages of a defensive character, and being badly provided with water, I determined to fall back upon this point, some 20 miles south, 52 miles from Corinth, and here to await the development of the enemy's plans and movements. Accordingly, leaving Baldwin on the 7th (see papers appended, marked H), the main body of my forces was assembled here on the 9th instant, leaving all the approaches from Corinth carefully guarded by a competent force of cavalry under an efficient officer, who occupies a line 15 miles north of this place. Supported by my general officers, I am doing all that is practicable to organize for offensive operations whensoever any movement of the enemy give the opportunity, which I anticipate as not remote.