War of the Rebellion: Serial 032 Page 0171 Chapter XXXIV. CAPTURE OF VAN BUREN, ARK.

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Supposing a portion of the enemy to have retreated toward the southeast part of the town, I dispatched Captain Fuller and his command, while yet one-half mile this side of Van Buren, to make a charge on said part of the town, the result of which I give in Captain Fuller's own language, as follows:

After riding about 1/2 miles, we overtook and captured 3 six-horse teams loaded with ammunition, which were placed under guard and sent to be reported to General Blunt. Proceeding down the road, we succeeded in capturing, in all, 27 wagons and teams, loaded with baggage, camp and garrison equipage, and, discovering the steamer Rose Douglass in the Arkansas River retreating down the river with all speed, we brought her to by firing at her with our carbines, and succeeded in capturing her, and her whole cargo, consisting of 4,300 bushels of corn, 6 hogsheads of sugar, a quantity of molasses, & c., which was handed over to General Herron. We also took 21 prisoners, all soldiers, and, except the teamster, with their arms and accouterments.

Captain Fuller and his command returned to town with the steamer on the morning of December 29, 1862.

I take pleasure in calling your attention to the gallantry and efficiency displayed by Captain Fuller and his command, and the daring exhibited throughout the engagement.

I am, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,


Major First Missouri Cavalry.


Commanding Second Division, Army of the Frontier.

Numbers 5. Report of Major General T. C. Hindman, C. S. Army.


Little Rock, [Ark.,] February 15, 1863.

COLONEL: After the battle of Prairie Grove, having returned south of the mountains, I found it impossible to forage Marmaduke's cavalry in Northwest Arkansas, and accordingly ordered him to Lewisburg, 100 miles below Van Buren. My force being thus reduced and continuing to diminish in strength daily by desertions and a frightful increase of sickness, the latter caused by the unprecedented hardships to which the men had been exposed, the former resulting principally, in my opinion, from the non-payment of the troops and the consequent sufferings of their families, I decided that it was unadvisable to keep my main body on the north side of the river, and, therefore, crossed it to the south side, and went into camp in the vicinity of Fort Smith. One of Fagan's infantry regiments, with a section of artillery, remained at Van Buren, and one regiment of cavalry, under Lieutenant Colonel R. P. Crump, was posted at Dripping Springs, 9 miles north of that place, instructed to picket at Oliver's, 19 miles north, and at corresponding points on all other roads leading toward the enemy, scouting actively on each road, and keeping up constant patrols by day and night between the several picket stations.

On the 21st of December, the lieutenant-general commanding the department, who was then at my headquarters, instructed me to move my command, except Roane's and Cooper's brigades of Texas and Indian troops, to Lewisburg, it being no longer possible to maintain them where I was.