W. L. Cambell, and Dr. Addison, of the Maurepas, acted with great gallantry, and displayed a coolness and courage unsurpassed by any one in the engagement. To Colonel Belknap, one of the citizens of Saint Charles, we are all indebted for the untiring energy and zeal with which he assisted before and during the action. He was always where he was needed, encouraging the men and assisting the officers. I am unable to furnish a list of killed and wounded, but do not think the numbers exceed 3 up to the time of the retreat. For the operations of the infantry, I respectfully refer you to Captain Williams. I herewith inclose a rough sketch of Saint Charles and the surrounding country, including the position of our batteries and that of the enemy's gunboats.
I am, sir, with great respect,
J. W. DUNNINGTON,
Commanding Gunboat Pontchartrain.
Numbers 2. Report of Captain A. M. Williams, C. S. Engineers.
HEADQUARTERS TRANS-MISSISSIPPI DISTRICT,
Little Rock, Ark., June 21, 1862.
SIR: I have to report that on the evening of the 16th information was brought me that the enemy's gunboats were advancing on Saint charles, which was soon substantiated by advance of our pickets, posted down the river. We immediately made preparation to receive them, the artillerymen keeping their position at the guns during the night, and my command being thrown out to prevent a surprise. We also, to prevent the enemy's gunboats passing our position, under orders from Major-General Hindman, scuttled the steamboats Eliza G. and mary Patterson the river that could not be removed until our batteries were silenced. The enemy, however, made no demonstrations during the night. On the morning of the 17th, about 8.30 o'clock, two gunboats, two transports, and one tug appeared in sight and prepared to engage us. The men under my command, consisting of detachments from Captains Jones', Hearin's, Smith's, and Johnson's companies, Colonel Pleasants' regiment, numbering about 35 men, wee, by order of Captain Fry, deployed as sharpshooters, and posted along the river below the battery. At 9 a. m. we engaged the enemy's pickets, and drove them in. The firing disclosed our position to the gunboats, from which the enemy commenced a furious fire of grape and shell, before which my men fell back to a more secure position. At this time the enemy opened fire upon our light battery of four guns, manned by the crew of the Maurepas, to which they replied gallantly. At 10 a. m. the heavy battery under command of Captain Dunnington, C. S. Navy, opened fire on them, and soon blew up one of their boats and silenced the others. When the explosion took place, the boat's crew jumped into the water and into boats, to escape the scalding steam that was pouring out of every hole and crevice. I immediately ordered all the sharpshooters that remained on the field, about 20 in number, to the river bank to shoot them. Numbers of them were killed in the water. At this time, about 11 o'clock, I discovered