after a determined fight of a half hour's duration drove him back about 50 yards and gained possession of the main road leading from Farmington to Corinth, upon which road was situated the bridge about half a mile in advance toward Corinth. The two companies under Major Buckner deployed in an open field on the left of the road, and Company B, of the Second Kentucky, in the thickets skirting the road on the right, and although meeting with a terrific resistance, pressed forward and gained possession of the end of the bridge, the enemy taking up their position some fifty yards distant on the opposite side of Bridge Creek. In gaining this position Lieutenant Parrish, commanding Company A, Twentieth Kentucky Regiment, with about 30 men, encountered over 100 of the enemy in a body, and after a severe struggle drove them across the creek on the left of the bridge. The position at the bridge I ordered them to hold at all hazards. The enemy speedily reformed his forces and advanced in good order, fully intent on regaining possession of the bridge. They delivered a well-directed volley into the ranks of Captain Baldwin's company (B), wounding 3 men severely. His men never flinched, but returned the fire with such spirit as to cause the enemy to again fall back.
In the mean time I had ordered Lieutenant-Colonel Hanson to advance his regiment (Twentieth Kentucky) across an open field on the right, some 500 yards from the bridge, and take position in the woods and swamp to the support of the skirmishers on that wing, who, under Captain Wheeler, of the First Kentucky, had advanced and were then hotly engaged. Here,too, the work was warm. The enemy in force were gradually driving the skirmishers back, when Lieutenant-Colonel Hanson, getting his regiment into position, opened such a destructive fire upon them that they withdrew. Seeing our forces at the bridge on his left sorely pressed at this juncture, he moved two companies, under Captain Morris and Lieutenant Wolcott, to their support. At this time I moved forward the rest of the brigade, which until now had been into position, so as to command our entire front. The Second Kentucky Regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel Spencer, I placed within supporting distance of the forces engaged at the bridge, sending forward two companies from the regiment to the support of those already at that point. The First Kentucky was moved forward to the support of the battery; the Thirty-first Indiana placed in position to prevent my left flank being turned.
The intensity of the fight at the bridge still seeming to increase, I sent forward Asst. Adjt. General Wickliffe Cooper to ascertain the position of the forces engaged. He returned, and reported the enemy making desperate efforts to turn our left flank and regain possession of the bridge. I immediately ordered forward two companies of the Thirty-first Indiana to re-enforce that position. I then rode forward to that point myself, and finding that I could not use effectively any larger force of infantry than that already there, I returned, and ordered Captain Mendenhall to open with shell upon the enemy, who had been largely re-enforced. After a few discharges the enemy broke and retreated in disorder, our men, with a yell and a cheer, following them up. They had proceeded but a short distance on the opposite side of the bridge when the enemy's batteries opened upon them with grape and canister, checking their progress and forcing them to retire to their position. The enemy in a short time reappeared and advanced again in good order, and arriving at a point some 50 yards in front of
54 R R-VOL X