War of the Rebellion: Serial 026 Page 0045 Chapter XXX. ATTACK ON PLYMOUTH, N. C.

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I feel it but just to state here that more resolute and determined bravery could not have been shown than that which was exhibited by our little band in defending the ford for more than four hours against an enemy of an overwhelming force. Their forces cannot be accurately stated, but from their own published accounts they had at and near the ford eight regiments of infantry, two regiments of cavalry, and one battery of artillery. They report men killed and wounded out of five different regiments.

The enemy's loss has been variously estimated by citizens living on their side of the river. Some say they lost over 100 in killed and wounded. We may safely say from what we saw and heard while we were prisoners that their loss was all of 50 men killed and wounded.

The object of the enemy was very apparent from the fact they had a large train of wagons, fifteen or twenty pontoon-boats (a portion of which they burned on their retreat), quite a number of ambulances, and everything necessary for the advance of a well-appointed army.

Before closing this report of feel it due the officers in whose hands we fell to mention that we received every kindness we could expect. We lacked nothing for our comfort they could reasonably supply.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. H. SIKES,

Captain Company D, Seventh C. S. Cavalry.

Major General S. G. FRENCH, Commanding Department.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS,

Petersburg, Va., March 14, 1863.

Respectfully forwarded. This is a record of a very successful skirmish on the Blackwater, in which Captain Sikes and his men greatly distinguished themselves.

S. G. FRENCH,

Major-General, Commanding.

DECEMBER 10, 1862.- Attack on Plymouth, N. C.

REPORTS.

Numbers 1.- Captain Barnabas Ewer, jr., Third Massachusetts Infantry.

Numbers 2.- First Lieutenant Jonathan T. Mizell, Company C, First North Carolina Infantry (Union).

Numbers 3.- Major General Samuel G. French, C. S. Army.

Numbers 1. Reports of Captain Barnabas Ewer, jr., Third Massachusetts Infantry.

PLYMOUTH, N. C., December 10, 1862.

SIR: At 4.30 o'clock this morning our pickets were driven in by a force (as near as we can estimate) of our companies of infantry and one of cavalry and four pieces of artillery. They came in immediately, driving all before them. Our forces (some 200 men), after making all the

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* For reports of Lieutenant Commander Flusser and Acting Volunteers Lieutenant Behm, U. S. Navy, see Annual Report of the Secretary of the Navy, December 7, 1863.

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