required that the battery should be constructed in a single night, and that all should be in readiness before daylight the following morning.
On Thursday, the 22d, the repairs of the levee were made as far as it could prudently be done, and a strong picket was thrown out to prevent the landing of the enemy and the discovery of our work,and consequently of our intentions. During the night one of the men, who, without the knowledge of the rest went in front of the line, refused on his return to answer the challenge,and was shot dead by two of our pickets firing on him at the same instant. The noise alarmed the enemy, and a strong detachment was immediately sent over the river, which attacked and drove in our pickets. Our work must have been discovered by them, and it would be charging them with gross stupidity not to suppose our plan betrayed; besides, on Friday morning a heavy rain set in, which of itself would have rendered a delay of at least two days necessary in the prosecution of our work. In the mean time rumors were reaching me of the concentration of a strong rebel force in the vicinity of Trenton, for the object, it was reported, of attacking Hickman and Columbus. As these rumors were confirmed by the refugees from the conscription, and as I saw no good that could be accomplished by remaining longer at the flotilla, I started back with my command on Friday afternoon, and the troops are now distributed in the district as they were before the expedition sailed.
In conclusion,permit me to express the opinion that with a properly-organized force of 5,000 men I doubt not the easy, and perhaps bloodless, capture of Forts Pillow and Randolph so soon as the roads leading from the river, by which the rear of their works can be gained, become practicable for artillery; but in the present condition of the country about here it would be unwise to withdraw from the different posts within this district troops enough to constitute an expedition sufficient for such an undertaking.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
I. F. QUINBY,
Brigadier-General Volunteers, Commanding District.
Captain J. C. KELTON,
A. A. G., Department of the Mississippi.
JUNE 3-5, 1862.-Evacuation of Fort Pillow, Tenn., by the Confederates and its occupation by the Union Forces.
LIST OF REPORTS
No. 1.-Colonel Graham N. Fitch, Forty-sixth Indiana Infantry.
No. 2.-Colonel Charles Ellet, jr., with congratulatory letter from the Secretary of War.
No. 3.-L. D. McKissick.
No. 4.-Brig. General J. B. Villepigue, C. S. Army, with instructions and congratulatory orders from General Beauregard.
No. 1 Reports of Colonel Graham N. Fitch, Forty-sixth Indiana Infantry.
FORT PILLOW TENN., June 5, 1862-4.30 a.m.
Arrangements were completed for a combined assault on the fort at 7 a.m. at a weak and accessible point, but the works were abandoned