War of the Rebellion: Serial 024 Page 0512 WEST TENN. AND NORTHERN MISS. Chapter XXIX.

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their commands or any part thereof have been engaged, I proceed to submit the following statement:

On December 18, 1862, being then at Holly Springs, Miss., with my command, I received orders to report at Jackson, Tenn., with all my effective men with arms, and provisions for two days. In pursuance whereof I immediately proceeded to Jackson by rail as ordered, leaving at Holly Springs about 200 men, 70 of whom, including Major Stephen M. Meeker and 1 lieutenant, were on duty and not relieved, and the remainder, including 2 lieutenants, sick and convalescent. I also left all my baggage and camp equipage, horses, mules, wagons, regimental and company books and papers and all the records of the regiment since its organization.

It appears that on the morning of December 20 a strong cavalry force of the enemy surprised and captured the post and entered the camp of my regiment, killing 2 men and wounding 6, one of whom has since died, and taking and paroling about 170 prisoners, including Major Meeker and 3 lieutenants, all belonging to my command. My camp was pillaged and burned, movable articles of value being carried away and the remainder destroyed.

I have the honor, sir, to be, with high respect, your obedient servant,


Colonel Sixty-second Illinois Infantry, Commanding.


Adjutant-General U. S. Army.

Numbers 16.

Reports of Major John J. Mudd, Second Illinois Cavalry, of the capture of Holly Springs, December 20, and operations December 24-27, including skirmish at Ripley, December 25.

HEADQUARTERS SECOND ILLINOIS CAVALRY, Holly Springs, Miss., December 27, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to report the following brief summary of the part performed by the Second Illinois Cavalry in the unfortunate affair of the 20th instant:

We (six companies) were encamped on the fair-ground, under Lieutenant-Colonel McNeil. I was under orders to proceed that day to Oxford by rail, and was not apprised of any attack being apprehended until about the time the infantry camp near the depot was captured. Colonel McNeil was at the time rallying the men on the east side of camp and advanced boldly to meet their first attack; but being pressed by overwhelming numbers he was compelled to fall back, and while doing so was unfortunately surrounded and taken prisoner. Not having time to form our men regularly the defense was a series of conflicts covering each side of our camp. Without being aware of the loss of Colonel McNeil Major Bush rallied a force on the south side, Captain Marsh on the north, and myself on the west, each with such aid as could be assembled, and pressed the enemy, whose lines now entirely encircled our camp. The fight was now terrible, the enemy gradually giving ground where pressed the hardest, but our detachments in following them up became separated from each other. About this time the enemy in immense force broke into our camp from the east, capturing our stragglers and convalescents and pressing near the rear of each