tinued in the engagement until the enemy's infantry were driven from the field and their batteries were playing heavily upon the position we occupied, when we were ordered to withdraw.
I take pleasure in calling your attention to the gallant and enthusiastic conduct of Privates John Thompson, Company F, and J. M. Byrd, Company G, who boldly moved in advance of the command and discharged their arms with due caution and alacrity. They were the first to open fire and last to quit the field, and I am happy, while reporting the especially worthy conduct of these two privates, to not have a solitary instance of cowardice or wavering to report, the whole command having advanced and stood under the fire from which older troops and greater numbers had retired.*
Lieutenant-Colonel Fourth Alabama Battalion.
Col. J. EDWARDS,
Commanding Second Brigade.
No. 29. Report of Captain John H. Millett, Fourth Kentucky Infantry.
CAMP NEAR COMITE RIVER,
August 7, 1862.
SIR: Through an unfortunate circumstances I was placed in command of the Fourth Kentucky Regiment at about 3 a.m. on 5th instant. After being placed in line our brigade moved forward until it reached the outskirts of Baton Rouge, where we moved by the left flank as far as the camp of the Fourteenth Maine Regiment. We then moved forward; the smoke being so dense my command was here for a time separated from the brigade. Having thrown out my right company as skirmishers I continued to move forward, but discovering that the enemy were on my left, supported by a battery, all concealed by the houses and fences, and not being able to change direction without placing my regiment immediately under the fire of our own troops, I rejoined the brigade. I have just taken my position on the right when you took command and ordered us forward. I moved my regiment obliquely to the left until my right had cleared the fence in front, when I ordered them forward in the direction of the enemy's camp, which they did with a cheer. We had advanced probably 200 yards, when an aide, whom I took to be on General Clark's staff (not being personally acquainted with any of them), ordered me to fall back. Seeing the balance of the brigade retiring, I gave the command to my regiment, which they were very unwilling to execute, seeing the enemy retiring from their camps. After reforming my regiment I was again ordered by you to advance. In this charge the enemy were driven completely from their camps. It is not necessary, captain, for me to say how my command acted in this charge; you, being in front of my left, could judge for yourself. I think that you will agree that they did not abuse
*Nominal list of casualties shows 1 officer and 10 men wounded in the "accidental affair on the road before daylight." The losses in the engagement are tabulated on p. 82.