War of the Rebellion: Serial 032 Page 0274 MO., ARK., KANS., IND. T., AND DEPT. N. W. Chapter XXXIV.

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HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, ARMY OF THE FRONTIER,

Near White Water, Mo. April 27, 1863.

GENERAL: Came upon the enemy last evening at 9 o'clock, near Jackson, to which place they had fallen back after attacking Cape Girardeau. With the First Iowa Cavalry, I charged the enemy's camp, driving him beyond the town.

The enemy suffered in killed and wounded, and we captured a large number of horses and other property. I lost no men.

At 6 o'clock in the morning I entered the town and found the enemy posted in force 1 mile out on the Bloomington road. Opened upon him with artillery. He made no reply, but moved off, and I pursued. The enemy moved with baggage trains and artillery in front, defending his rear by strong bodies of cavalry. Fiver miles out on the Bloomington road he destroyed a bridge, which delayed me one hour. I crossed and came up with him again within 3 miles of the bridge over White Water, the enemy from 6,000 to 7,000 strong. The Third Iowa Cavalry were in advance, and had a severe skirmish with the enemy before the main body came up. The enemy here rallied in considerable force, but we drove him back, and pushed on to bridge over White Water, which we could not reach in time to prevent him from crossing. After passing this bridge the enemy destroyed it. In the last encounter we had 1 man killed and 4 men wounded, one captain and 16 privates missing, probably captured, and 4 horses killed and 10 wounded. Our rations being entirely exhausted, I am obliged to pause a few hours for supplies to come up. There is a ford not far above, over which I will attempt to pass, unless I can repair the bridge within the course of the day.

General McNeil joined me with his force of cavalry. I feel justified in pressing the enemy until he is punished and driven out of the State.

WM. VANDEVER,

Brigadier-General.

Brigadier-General DAVIDSON, Saint Louis, Mo.

HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, ARMY OF THE FRONTIER,

Camp, Six Miles from Bloomfield, Mo., April 29, 1863.

GENERAL: I am now at the Castor, 6 miles from Bloomfield. The enemy still retiring. I have made a temporary halt order for the purpose of closing up the column. I will advance to Bloomfield this evening, and advise you further. We have had smart skirmishing this morning at the crossing of Castor, with some few casualties. In his retreat the enemy destroyed the bridges in his rear, which we have had to repair and rebuild. I think we have run him harder than he was ever run before.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. VANDEVER,

Brigadier-General.

Brigadier-General DAVIDSON, Saint Louis, Mo.

P. S.-It is very important that the bridge across White Water should be will guarded. I respectfully suggest that the forces at Cape Girardeau attend to that, as it is within supporting distance from there. Would it not be well also to push down toward us from Pilot Knob a strong reconnoitering party? I would like to open my line of communication in that direction.

Respectfully, &c.,

WM. VANDEVER,

Brigadier-General.