streets in town. My command consisted of 50 men, and I occupied a position within about 100 yards of Teasdale & Ried's upper wharf. Scarcely had we our positions when the boat hove in sight and anchored about 1 1/2 miles off, opposite Mr. Baza's, on the east bank of the river, then about 4 p. m. I discovered that there was constant communication between the gunboat and the opposite side of the river by means of small boats, but at the time could not discover the causes, &c. At night I covered all the landings above and below the town with my pickets, with instructions that they would report to my at daybreak without fail, as I was under the impression that the enemy would make an effort to land early in the morning. We held our positions firmly during the night, but were not disturbed. About daylight I discovered that the enemy again communicated with the opposite side of the river (at Mr. Baza's). A short time after sunrise they moved up slowly and handed at Teasdale & Ried's Wharf. Having nothing to cover my men from their view but a plank fence and an entrenchment thrown up during the night, I ordered all to lie close and keep concealed, at the same time occupying a position myself so as to watch every movement of the enemy. No sooner had the boat struck the wharf than they sent being afterwards informed by some of my men that he was Bill Roe, well known as the engineer of the steamer Saint Mary's. As soon as he returned to the boat they commenced landing their forces. So soon as I saw 30 or 40 men on the wharf, and at the same time the upper and lower deck of the boat crowded as thick as they could stand, I ordered my men to fire, which order as any men could do. the enemy immediately retreated to their boat in great confusion, dragging their dead and wounded after them, and as [in] falling back returned our fire both by small-arms as well as heavy and light artillery, throwing shell, grape, and canister-shot, moving as rapidly as their steam could carry them under cover of their heavy fire, &c.
They fell back opposite Mr. Baza's and ordered their land forces to fall back, which had been marched up from Orange Mill the evening previous (70 or 80 negroes, with white officers). This transport had on board three or four pieces of light artillery mounted as usual for such guns. I cannot be mistaken in this, as my position gave me the best opportunity to observe them closely. We suppose the forces on board from 600 to 700, under command of the notorious Montgomery. He acknowledged to the Honorable T. T. Russell that his whole regiment not less than from 20 to 30. Among the wounded, we are informed, was the illustrious colonel himself. This was acknowledged to several parties on the river; but among the strongest proofs of some accident befalling their leading officer is that they drew off from the wharf in great haste as soon as they could take in their dead and wounded under cover of their heavy artillery. Among the trophies on the wharf was a considerable quantity of blood in several places and also many fragments of bone, pronounced by the surgeon of the post here pieces of cranium.
I cannot speak in too high terms of my men for their cool and deliberate action under heavy fire of the enemy. This transport was supposed to be the Ben De Ford, the largest ever up the river; and it was thought by good judges that she would carry at least 1,000 troops. The position of my two detachments was such that they were unable to fire, in conse-