by our batteries. The bridge being completed, at the request of General Davidson, the Fortieth Iowa and Twenty-seventh Wisconsin Regiments were ordered across, to take possession of the woods in which the enemy's battery had been concealed. Immediately preceding the crossing of the regiments, I ordered the whole of the Eleventh Ohio Battery and the two rifled pieces of the Fifth Ohio Battery to throw shell into the woods to be occupied. The two regiments advanced with alacrity across the half mile of sand, and without opposition took possession of the woods beyond.
Large bodies of the enemy were now to be seen moving at a great distance beyond. Both batteries were, by the suggestion of General Davidson, ordered to keep up a brisk fire with their rifled pieces. Their practice at this great distance, being at least 2 miles, was very commendable, many of the shells dropping in the midst of the enemy. At this time the skirmishers thrown out on the right flank of the Eighteenth Illinois Volunteers were fired upon by a small party of the enemy. The fire being returned, the latter retired.
General Davidson's command having crossed the river, the two infantry regiments were called back; and, in compliance with instructions received, the Fortieth Iowa Volunteer Infantry was left as a guard at the bridge, whilst the division advanced with the column, under the immediate command of General Steele, on the road to Little Rock.
It affords me pleasure to record the efficient manner in which I was assisted by Colonel Graves and Wood, commanding brigades, and by the officers composing my staff. D. H. Brush, late colonel of the Eighteenth Illinois Volunteers, rendered me valuable service as volunteer aide-de-camp. To Colonel William H. Graves I am indebted for the excellent position held by his brigade on the road to Little Rock.
I have the honor to be, with high regard, yours,
Colonel Forty-third Regiment Illinois Vols., Commanding Division.
GEORGE O. SOKALSKI,
First Lieutenant Second Cavalry, and Actg. Asst. Adjt. General