War of the Rebellion: Serial 024 Page 0757 Chapter XXIX. ARKANSAS POST

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and in good faith, and that we had gained the enemy's position, with his fort, guns, men, and all the materiel of war.

The enemy resisted well and manfully to our front, but his resistance was idle after the reduction of the fort, in the face of our greatly superior lines and columns poured into the works with cheers and hallowing. I halted Steele's division at the lines and gave orders to General Stuart to secure the prisoners in our front. These embraced the brigades of Garland and Deshler, with a battery of artillery, some cavalry, and detachments. Their arms were stacked and the prisoners marched to the landing back of the Post. Night overtook us in that position.

The 12th instant was mostly consumed in collecting captured property, of which Captain J. Condit Smith was ordered to take charge, and in enrolling and embarking the prisoners. This was done under direction of Major Sanger, my inspector-general, who has been named by General McClernand to conduct them to Cairo. Major Sanger reports to me that he has put on board the steamboats designated for the purpose 4,791 prisoners of war, which number embraces all who were in the cantonments, fort, and along the lines of the rifle-pits. Among the captured property I was rejoiced to find the ammunition shipped for me from Memphis for Vicksburg, which had been captured by the enemy on the Blue Wing.

With reference to the conduct of my troops I am fully satisfied. There was far less straggling than I have noticed in former battles and engagements.

Colonel Giles A. Smith, who commanded a brigade of Stuart's division, manifested all the qualities of a good soldier, and without hesitation I recommend him for promotion as a brigadier-general, the command of which he already exercises. Colonel T. Kilby Smith commanded the other brigade of the division, and did it bravely and well, and deserves special notice.

I must leave to General Stuart to notice the conduct of others in his division, and for General Steele to make mention of the conduct of his troops, with which he is better acquainted than I am, they having recently been assigned to my command. Generals Steele and Stuart commanded the two divisions of my corps. They led them in person, gave direction to their troops, provided for all their wants, and left me the comparatively easy task of watching their movements, which were all skillful and correct.

I now inclose the reports of General Steele's brigadiers [Blair, Thayer, and Hovey]. The former [Blair] having borne the brunt of our unsuccessful assault at Vicksburg was properly held in reserve on this occasion, and suffered but little loss.

Only a small part of Thayer's brigade could come forward to the first line on account of the narrow front allowed by the character of the ground, but these suffered a heavy loss, as will be seen by the general's report. He in person was much exposed, lost his horse in battle, and did his appropriate part.

General Hovey had, on the day of battle, the lead of Steele's division, charged with attacking and turning the enemy's left. Here was doubtless the most stubborn fighting. It was held by Deshler's brigade and a section of well-handled 10-pounder Parrott rifles. General Hovey's description leaves me nothing to add, except that the difficulties were increased by the blind character of the ground, every foot of which he had to study a he advanced under a galling fire. The dark cypress swamp on his right completely covered the movements of the