War of the Rebellion: Serial 019 Page 0111 Chapter XXV. OPERATIONS IN WHITE RIVER, ARK.

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cate with him, and advised that another body of the enemy was between Aberdeen and Devall's Bluff, I directed the flotilla to ascend to this place with a view of here joining it overland, and marched the troops, accompanied with two howitzers attached to wagons, in the direction of the latter place. We left Aberdeen at 5 p. m. About 2 miles beyond the scene of yesterday's action a small picket of the enemy was discovered. The march was continued, being a moonlight might a level prairie, distant from Aberdeen 12 miles, and about midnight a body of the enemy (mounted) was discovered a short distance to the left of the advance guard, consisting of a company and a half of the Thirty-fourth Indiana. The object of the enemy appeared to be to cut off the advance from the main body, distant three-quarters of a mile. Captain Hunter, commanding officer of the advance, promptly formed, facing the enemy, and gave them a volley. They fled, but rallied in about a half mile. Being with the advance I ordered up a howitzer, which with two or three well-directed discharges sent the enemy out of sight.

As we were approaching a grove perpendicular to our line of march skirmishers were thrown forward. They soon reported a considerable body of the enemy forming in the grove, as manifest by their hearing the commands of his officers. One party which showed itself outside of the grove near the left of the line of skirmishers was fired upon by them. The troops were so formed as to constitute three sides of a square, the front looking to the grove, its center occupying the road, in which, forming a part of the front, was placed one of the howitzers; the other covered the open space to the rear. Being thus formed the whole command was ordered forward to within 600 yards of the grove. The sound of preparation upon the part of the enemy became so distinct as to indicate an object for the howitzer, which was accordingly directed to shell the grove. After a few discharges the enemy were heard in full and rapid flight on the Devall road. The command was moved forward to the edge of the grove, and so hasty had been the enemy's flight that canteens, cooking utensils, provisions, saddles, and bridles were found scattered about and a number of their horses captures and one prisoner. We learn from him that Colonel Shaler, Arkansas troops, had that evening assumed command, superseding the officer who had been in command in the action of the day previous because of some charge of cowardice or incompetency against him. The enemy's loss is not known. One dead body was found near our line of march. We were distant from Devall's Bluff 7 miles, from Clarendon 10. Several thousand of the enemy were known to be between us and the former place, and a force was supposed to be between us and the latter. After a short rest we continued our march, reaching this place, and joined the flotilla soon after sunrise.

No information of a positively reliable character relative to General Curtis' position or movements could be obtained, but sufficient of a circumstantial character to render it very probable that he is 30 miles from here, at or near Cotton Plant, on Cache River, which empties into White at this place. Although the men are very much exhausted with heat and a long night march, I shall this p. m. commence a march up the Cache with the command, accompanied by three 12-pounder boat howitzers, with crews extemporized from the infantry. The enemy's pickets are within 3 miles of here, and he is known to be in large force between here and Cotton Plant; but I feel confident of defeating all his forces this side of the Crossing of Cache, 6 miles on the march, and hold-