their wagons and came back mounted on their mules and horses; wagons were packed across the road, and many capsized on the side of the pike; horses ran wild through the woods, and, although men were allowed by me to pass as wagon guards, there were none at their posts. They had left the road and were bivouacking in small parties in the woods, evidently careless of the fate of the trains.
The woods toward La Vergne were filled with small bodies of rebel cavalry, which were quickly dislodged by my skirmishers and driven off. I reached Colonel Innes at La Vergne at 7 o'clock, and assisted him in arranging the trains and forwarding them to Nashville.
I detached four companies of my regiment, and Lieutenant-Colonel Dickinson's command, and sent them back to Stewart's Creek at daylight next morning, remaining myself at La Vergne, collecting supplies from the trains, gathering in cattle abandoned by our men, and sending them to the front.
With the remaining portion of my command I joined the garrison at Stewart's Creek, January 7, and immediately set to work putting it in a defensible condition by erecting a stockade and throwing up a small redoubt to cover the bridge.
I was relieved in command there by Lieutenant-Colonel Carroll, commanding Tenth Indiana Volunteers, on January 22, and reported for duty at headquarters.
In connection with the disgraceful panic of January 1, I would mention the names of the following officers: Lieutenant Gilbert, Second Tennessee Cavalry, who had his horse hitched up to a wagon on the road, and who abandoned it with the teamsters, joining in the stampede; Lieutenant Newell, Twenty-first Wisconsin, and the regimental quartermaster Seventy-ninth Pennsylvania, who abandoned the train of the Twenty-eighth Brigade, and, although within my lines, never communicated the fact of capture until it was too late to pursue the enemy.
Out of a crowd of runaway teamsters I took the names of four men who cut loose their mules from the wagons and left them to their fate: Henry W. Davis, Twenty-fifth Illinois; Scott Cunningham, Twenty-fifth Illinois; Henry Denney, Fifty-ninth Ohio, and Jacob Rohrer, One hundred and first Ohio. A number of commissioned officers came back with the men, but, on seeing the obstacles interposed to their passage, they returned voluntarily to the front.
My officers and men performed their duty faithfully and strictly. I was rendered signal assistance by Lieutenant Rendelbrook, Fourth U. S. Cavalry, and the non-commissioned officers and men of his command, as also Lieutenant Maple, Anderson Troop, who, with their commands, were constantly on duty, reporting the movements of the enemy, and assisting in effectually checking the disgraceful and causeless panic.
I would respectfully mention the name of Captain Perkius, assistant quartermaster, headquarters quartermaster, who evinced the utmost zeal and vigilance, and assisted most materially in the defense of the post, and in restoring order among the trains.
I have the honor to be, colonel, with great respect, your obedient
J. W. BURKE,
Lieutenant-Colonel, Comdg. Tenth Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
Colonel C. GODDARD,
Assistant Adjutant-General and Chief of Staff.