boats which they are making near the mouth of the Yazoo River. These they expect to finish by the middle of October.
I am, truly, your obedient servant,
BENJ. F. BUTLER,
Commanding the Armies of the United States.
No. 2. Report of Col. Stephen Thomas, Eighth Vermont Infantry.
HDQRS. EIGHTH REGIMENT VERMONT VOLUNTEERS,
Algiers, La., September 6, 1862.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that on the 4th instant Captain Hall, commanding the outposts at Bayou des Allemands, dispatched Captain Clark, Company K, with a detail of infantry, and one 12-pounder howitzer, manned by 12 men, on a train of cars, to meet and protect the upper train, which was supposed to be without escort. When his train had arrived nearly opposite Boutte Station it was fired into by a large force of guerrilla cavalry and infantry lying in ambush. Many of his men were instantly killed, wounded, and disabled, including every one of the artillerists, they, with many of the infantry, being on open platform cars. The enemy had placed the switch so that the train ran onto a side track, where it came in collision with an empty passenger car, the force of which was such as to knock many of the men down and off the cars. One of these last, during the momentary delay, ran ahead and turned the switch at the order end of the side track, thus thwarting the design of the enemy to run the train into the ditch. Captain Clark soon met the upper train, but not deeming it prudent to return through a force which was estimated at not less than 1,000, he kept on with both trains to Algiers. The rebels, after robbing our dead, wounded, and prisoners, and committing numberless atrocious acts on them (slashing wounded, helpless men over the head with sabers, &c.) moved on toward the bayou, nearing which place they hoisted a flag of truce over the bushes. Captain Hall sent out a party to see what was wanted. This party being absent an unreasonable length of time he sent out another, which was seized, and both were place in front and obliged to march toward the bayou. Captain Hall, seeing the immensely superior force that was brought against him and that his first fire would prove fatal to his own men, surrendered his force, as I learned by an intelligent contraband that escaped.
On the 5th, in obedience to your orders, I proceeded at an early hour, with all the valuable force of that portion of the regiment stationed here and with a section of Nims' battery, toward the Bayou des Allemands, by railroad. When within about 13 miles of Boutte Station we most unfortunately came in collision with a cow, by which several cars were thrown from the track and several men handily injured. So many cars were smashed up that it was impossible to place the men on what were left without subjecting them to great exposure and without room to use their arms. Before the wreck could be cleared from the track and the track repaired so that the train could move on it was so late that I deemed it impossible to co-operate with Colonel McMillan, as previously arranged, especially as I learned that the track was torn up at