Report of Major Zephaniah S. Spaulding, Twenty-seventh Ohio Infantry, including operations October 3-9.
HEADQUARTERS TWENTY-SEVENTH OHIO INFANTRY,
In the Field, near Ripley, Miss., October 9, 1862.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to report that this regiment left camp on Tuscumbia River on the morning of Friday, the 3rd instant, and marched with the brigade to a point about 1 1\2 miles from Corinth and inside the outer line of defenses. From here we were marched to what was formerly known as Battery D, where we took position as support to Maurice's battery, and remained for several hours, when we retired into the town past the Seminary, and formed our line on the north side of the place. During the night we changed our position to one in front and on the right of the northwest defenses of Corinth, and I was ordered to from my line on the right of what is known as Battery Robinett.
At 1 a. m. of the 4th instant I sent Company B, under command of First Lieutenant Bryan, as skirmishers into the woods, about 400 yards to the front, where they remained, doing good execution, until driven back by a heavy force of the enemy about 11 o'clock. At 9 a. m. I sent Company A, First Lieutenant Sawyer commanding, out as skirmishers, who were driven back at the same time. At daylight a rebel battery in the woods in front of us opened a heavy fire, most of their shots going over us, but from which we had 1 man killed and 3 wounded. About 11 o'clock a heavy force of the enemy appeared in our front, driving in our skirmishers and evidently intending to charge upon our battery. They advanced upon us in four column by the flank, one of which, headed by the Ninth Texas, came forward in the direction of the left wing of this regiment. I ordered my men to hold their fire until the enemy came within short range, and screen themselves as much as possible by means of the brush in front of them. As the enemy came up the hill the Twenty-seventh poured into them a galling fire, advancing as they did so until it became almost a hand-to hand conflict. At this time the sixty-third Ohio, upon our left, was forced back, and I found my left and rear was being endangered. I therefore ordered my left to fall back, which they did in good order, until they formed a line with the Eleventh Missouri, just brought up to take the place of the Sixty-third Ohio, and together we charged over the brow of the hill, driving the enemy in great confusion and with great loss. Coming in range of our own guns from the fort I now ordered my regiment to halt, and the engagement, as far as we were concerned, was practically ended.
During the engagement our loss amounted to 9 killed, including 1 commissioned officer (First Lieutenant Webb, of Company G); 47 wounded, including 2 commissioned officers (Captain Lynch and Second Lieutenant Young, both the Company G), and 6 missing, whom I have reason to believe are prisoners. I forward a complete list with my port.*
Saturday night my men slept on their arms upon the field, and Sunday morning marched with the brigade in pursuit of the enemy. This pursuit was kept up until Tuesday night, when we bivouacked about 5 miles from Ripley.
Wednesday morning I was ordered out on a reconnaissance, under
*Embodied in revised statement, p. 173.