hill, capturing some 200 prisoners. A division of the enemy, said to be that of [H. P.] Van Cleve, was driven down the hill-side in utter rout by our division. The enemy then rapidly concentrated large numbers of fresh troops on the other side of the river, and poured upon our dense ranks a withering fire of musketry and artillery. Our lines, originally very close in the order of advance, were commingled near the river, and this new fire from an overwhelming force from the opposite banks of the stream threw them into disorder. The division recoiled over the field in the direction of the wood through which we first passed. When withdrawing from the field, I met Brigadier-General Wharton with his battery and the cavalry, with which he was covering our right. He was about opening fire with the battery, when I advised him not to do so, as he might fire on some of our men. He detached Colonel Harrison, of the Texas Rangers, who, with my brigade, formed and supported Robertson's battery in the verge of the wood until General Breckinridge ordered me to resume my original lines. One of our batteries opened from its verge, and I succeeded in forming my brigade for its support, and was in that position when Major-General Breckinridge arrived and ordered me to resume our original lines, about a mile in the rear, as night had come on.
The loss sustained by my command in this action was 295 killed and wounded, and 90 missing, most of whom were doubtless killed or wounded. The total loss of my command in both actions was 537.
Wright's battery was bravely fought, but lost its gallant commander, who was killed at his guns. Lieutenant [J. W.] Mebane, though wounded, succeeded in withdrawing all of the battery except two of the pieces, which were lost, and which could not be got off, as many of the horses were killed.
For other details I refer to the reports of the commanding officers of the regiments and of the battery, which I inclose.
During the battle both men and officers displayed great intrepidity, and I attribute the repulse on Friday to the manifest hopelessness of the attempt to hurl a single division, without support, against the cardinal position of the whole hostile army. This was apparent to the least intelligent soldier. The line fell back, rallied, and in half an hour was ready to re-engage.
In rallying the troops, I feel it my duty to notice and report the conspicuous zeal and gallantry displayed by yourself, and to testify my appreciation of the valuable assistance you rendered on the field.
Colonel Smith, of the Twentieth Tennessee, a brave and skillful officer, was severely wounded on Wednesday, and the command devolved on Lieutenant-Colonel [Frank M.] Lavender, who has not been heard of since the action on Friday. It is believed that he is wounded or a prisoner.
Colonel Miller, of the First and Third Florida, was wounded on Friday while bravely leading his regiment, which he withdrew, retaining the command, notwithstanding his wound.
In the action of the 31st, Lieut. Edwin Whitfield, of my staff, was severely, if not fatally, wounded by my side while gallantly rendering me the most efficient aid, and Mr. Orville Ewing, a young gentleman of great promise, distinguished in the battle of Mill Springs, was killed nearly at the same moment.
MajorJ. C. Thompson, volunteer aide, and Captain Wooley, assistant adjutant-general, assisted me efficiently on Wednesday.