forcements, his brigade being held in reserve. He promptly sent me the Nineteenth Kentucky and Ninety-seventh Illinois, commanded respectively by Lieutenant Colonel John Cowan and Colonel F. S. Rutherford. I ordered the Nineteenth Kentucky to relieve the Twenty-third Wisconsin, which they did the coolness and courage of veteran troops, almost silencing the fire of the enemy in the rifle-pits in their front. It is due to Colonel Cowan to say he handled his regiment in a manner which enlisted the heartiest praise from General Smith, Colonel Landram, and myself, all of whim witnessed the conduct of the regiment, as commanded by Colonel Cowan. The Ninety-seventh Illinois was held in reserve for awhile, but afterward fought most gallantly in front, though somewhat under protection of a clump of woods which lay close to the right of the fort.
My whole command was under heavy fire for three and a half hours, and the greater part had to make the assault through an open, marshy field, where the enemy had a full and fair range with grape-shot and musketry. I cannot say too much in praise of the officers and men under my command; they all did all I could ask of them, and stormed one of these strongest of the enemy's works like veteran regiments.
It is proper to say that but one of my regiments had ever been under fire. Colonel Landram was frequently with me during the day, and we often consulted together. In my opinion he managed his brigade with great skill, judgment, and bravery, being everywhere his presence was needed, rendering me great assistance by his counsel and promptitude in re-enforcing me at a critical time. Captain A. N. Keigwin, acting assistant adjutant-general; Lieutenant T. J. Elliott, aide-de-camp, and Lieutenant M. T. Kirk, Sixth Missouri Cavalry; also Lieutenant M. Whilldin, my ordnance officer, and Major Livingston, volunteer aide-de-camp, and now chief of police, Army of the Mississippi, rendered me great service, delivering orders to my regiments when shells, grape, and musket-balls rained like hail in a storm. Captain A. A. Bloutn, Seventeenth Ohio Battery, rendered great service, annoying the enemy and frequently diverting his fire from our advancing columns.
Before the surrender one of Captain Blount's pieces was ordered to the front and did great execution, General Smith frequently sighting the gun himself. The Sixteenth Indiana was the first regiment in the fort, followed by the Eighty-third Ohio, who were the first to place their regimental colors on the enemy's works. The balance of my command were soon within the works.
As I approached the entrance of the fort the guard presented bayonets and stated that they had not surrendered. I told him that they had fought gallantly, but were whipped, and I demanded a surrender. They dropped their arms and bid me enter, which I did, and hoisted the first national flag. The general commanding (Churchill) surrendered the fort to me in person. It is but justice to say that Major Montgomery, Sixth Missouri Cavalry, was next after me in the fort, followed by Colonel Lucas, Sixteenth Indiana; Captain A. N. Keigwin and Lieutenant Thomas J. Elliott, both of my staff.
The list of killed and wounded of my command, which I herewith submit,* shows that each of my regiments was in the hottest part of the fight and did its duty nobly. I may here mention that my escort (part of the Tenth Kentucky Cavalry) behaved well, and were never found wanting in the hour of need.
*Embodied in revised statement, p. 716.