War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0239 Chapter XXVI. SKIRMISH AT PALATKA, FLA.

Search Civil War Official Records

quence of the large warehouse concealing the enemy from them. They held the position as ordered, to be ready to attack him if he had advanced into the town as we expected. Every order was obeyed and carried out to my satisfaction. Ha he advanced, as we expected, we should no doubt have had a close and desperate engagement; but the vandals, satisfied with their warm reception, thought best to retire as quick as possible. They proceeded down to Orange Mill and took on board their land forces, several negroes, horses, and plunder, of which they had robbed the good citizens on that side of the river. They committed great depredations in their raid from orange mill up to Mr. Sanchez', taking everything they could ally their hands upon-negroes, horses, and provisions of all kinds. They were guilty even of breaking open the trunks of helpless women, stealing and destroying the contents. Honorable T. T. Russell informs me that in conversation with Montgomery he said that he would th next day occupy Palatka and in a few days have 4,000 or 5,000 troops at that place, and as he had his own provost-marshal, he wanted all the citizens on that side of the river to report at their earliest convenience.

Excuse me lengthy report, as I deem it my duty to give you all the details and real acts of such demons. My little command is again ready for them, and will contest every inch of ground if he should attempt another landing. I had 1 man slightly wounded in the thigh by a fragment of shell. Thank God, none killed. All in fine spirits.

J. J. DICKISON,

Captain, Commanding Company H and Post.

Captain W. CALL,

Headquarters, Camp Finegan, East Florida.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA,

Lake City, Fla., April 11, 1863.

Respectfully forwarded for the information of the commanding general. I have ascertained that Lieutenant-Colonel [Liberty] Billings, of the First South Carolina (negro) Regiment, was wounded in four places in the attempt of the enemy to land at Palatka.

JOS. FINEGAN,

Brigadier-General.

SPECIAL ORDERS,

HDQRS. DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA, Numbers 244.

Lake City, April 11, 1863.

The brigadier-general commanding has much pleasure in commending in the highest degree the gallantry and bravery of Captain J. J. Dickison, Company H, Second Florida Cavalry, his officers and men, in their victory over the enemy, on the 27th March, at Palatka. The enemy landed in large force, and were doubtless sure of an easy victory at so isolated a point, but they were met by Captain Dickison and his gallant men with a coolness and daring deserving the emulation of all soldiers. They attacked the enemy with their small-arms, and in comparatively open view of the formidable batteries of their gunboat, and drove them on board in the greatest confusion, killing and wounding many, and without loss to themselves.

The brigadier-general commanding also notices with the highest ap-