JULY 12, 1863.- Skirmish near Switzler's Mill, Chariton County, Mo.
Report of Captain Henry S. Glaze, Ninth Missouri State Militia Cavalry.
BRUNSWICK, July 13, 1863.
LIEUTENANT: Sergeant Zimmerman with 20 men were attacked at the house of John Watson, some 3 miles east of Switzler's Mill, Chariton County, yesterday morning.
On the night previous they took Mr. Watson's son a prisoner, and during the night he made his escape. They then made every preparation for an attack, knowing he would bring them [the rebels?], if there were any in the country. About 6 o'clock, just as they were all ready to mount horses, and had withdrawn pickets, they observed, about 75 yards distant, in a corn-field, some rebels. Our boys got the first shot. The rebels sent their buckshot and balls very thick for some twenty minutes, or long enough [so] that one of the men loaded and shot nine times. They then made maneuvers as though they were going to surround the house, and having heard by one of the negroes, and his own observation convicting him, that there was between 60 and 100, he started a messenger to Glasgow for re-enforcements, calculating to take position in the house and out-buildings, but the rebels did not make any further attempt, leaving in a northwestern direction, going, I understand, up th east side of Chariton. Soon Colonel Denny arrived and started in pursuit, with 60 men. I also sent Lieutenant [George I.] Smith, with 38 men, to try and head them, if possible, near Keytesville; if not, to assist in pursuit. We had 1 man badly wounded, and 4 slightly. The boys say they saw several rebels fall when they fired, but they only found 1 man with his leg broken; will probably die. I did not send the sergeant out as an attacking party, but to try and locate them, and send for re-enforcements. The sergeant counted 72 men as they were marching off over the prairie. I had to call in the citizens to guard the camp, as I sent out every available man.
There is a party of rebels up on Grand River, but I have had no men to send after them. When they are chased out of the Persia and Monitor Hills, they come up here; and with one company to do camp duty, and pretend to cope with them, is rather hazardous. They are not going in small squads; they generally travel from 60 to 100. Had I the arms, I could get citizens to assist me, but I am short of them.
I shall need ammunition soon, and if I remain here I will get you to send me some, either by rail to Laclede or by river to this place.
If I stay here, I will need more provisions. Please send me word whether to get them or not. I have some of those old scoundrels that were feeding those rebels, but the evidence is only from negroes and circumstances. What shall I do with them? I also have very good evidence on several others feeding them.
This is the first time since I have been in the service that I was unable to go on a scout when needed.
The rebels were under the command of Holtsclaw, of Howard county, recently from Price's army.
No news from Lieutenant Smith and Colonel Denny, more than firing was heard in the direction of Beckelheimer's Mill about 9 or 10 p. m. yesterday.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. S. GLAZE,
Captain Company H, Ninth Missouri State Militia.
Lieutenant LUTHER T. HAYMAN,
Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, Northeastern District of Missouri.