War of the Rebellion: Serial 024 Page 0774 WEST TENN. AND NORTHERN MISS. Chapter XXIX.

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[JANUARY, 1863.]

General STUART:

DEAR GENERAL: Your report has gone to General McClernand, and I had not even time to copy it in my book. We are under orders to go to Napoleon, and if a streak of light opens I must drop out and make the signal. If a chance offers I will ask permission to modify your report. General Hovey reports about the same-that he was unsupported, and that the men of his brigade silenced those same guns and made your position comparatively safe and protected.

I regret these conflicts of opinions, but they are always occurring when troops look to neighbors for support and assistance. The true rule is, as you state it, each commander to report his own acts and let a common superior reconcile any seeming discrepancy.

You stated the signal wrong; the signal for assault was three minutes after the cessation of our batteries, not the gunboats; but the attacks were near enough simultaneous.

Yours,

SHERMAN.

Number 34. Report of Captain Peter P. Wood, Battery A, First Illinois Light Artillery.

HDQRS. COMPANY A, FIRST ILLINOIS ARTILLERY, On board steamer Planet, January 16, 1863.

DEAR SIR: I have the honor of reporting to you the part taken by the battery under my command in the action at the Post of Arkansas on the 10th and 11th instant:

Debarked about 3 miles from fort on the morning of the 10th and immediately moved forward with First Brigade [under quite a heavy fire from the fort] into the woods, inside of the enemy's second line of works. During the night moved farther to front and right, and on Sunday morning were ordered into position by General Sherman in cleared space on the left of division and north of fort. At 12.30 opened fire on batteries and pits, which fire was kept up with but little intermission until our infantry advanced, when we were ordered forward on road leading directly into the fort. From this position we again advanced to within 500 yards of works, where we remained, keeping up a steady but not rapid fire. Our ammunition getting short, I ceased the fire from two sections, keeping up this fire until our chests were empty. I retired the guns singly to our first position, where, finding 30 rounds of 6-pounder projectiles, I sent one gun forward, where it remained but a moment before being relieved by Company B. A few moments after, word was brought of victory.

Loss in men, none; horses, 1 killed, 4 wounded; horse belonging to Lieutenant McCagg, killed.

Rounds of ammunition expended:

Shell, 12-pounder howitzer............................. 98

Spherical case, 12-pounder howitzer..................... 96

Spherical case, 6-pounder gun...........................371

Solid shot, 6-pounder gun...............................139

Total rounds............................................704