Numbers 4. Report of Major George W. Kelly, Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, of action at Marshall, Mo.
HDQRS. FOURTH MISSOURI STATE MILITIA CAVALRY,
Marshall, Mo., October 22, 1863.
COLONEL: I have the honor to report that, by the order of Brigadier General E. B. Brown, commanding Central District of Missouri, I marched, on the morning of the 10th instant, with Companies A, B, E, and F, of the Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, and some 60 men of the Fifth Provisional Regiment Enrolled Missouri Militia, under Major William Gentry and Captain Brown, down the Pacific Railroad, to find the whereabouts of General Jo. Shelby and his raiders, and to annoy him if found, and form a junction with Lieutenant-Colonel Lazear, of the First Missouri State Militia Cavalry. I struck Shelby's pickets at the town of Syracuse; skirmished some 4 miles east of Syracuse, and struck the entire force of the enemy to a stand; opened on me with his artillery. My force being too small, I retired, without loss or injury, to Syracuse. I then took a circuitous route, and formed a junction with Lieutenant-Colonel Lazear, same evening at 11 p. m., at Tipton, Mo. Distance traveled, 55 miles.
On the morning of the 11th, left Tipton with Lieutenant-Colonel Lazear, and marched to Syracuse; from there in the direction of Boonville, Mo. Struck the enemy's picket about 4 miles south of Boonville at dark. Animals and men being tired, and the night very dark, we lay upon our arms in line. Distance traveled, 30 miles.
On the morning of the 12th, marched at daylight for Boonville; found the enemy had encamped 5 miles west, on the Georgetown road; pushed on; came up to the enemy's rear guard, skirmishing all day, killing several and capturing some prisoners; joined General Brown's command at 9 p. m.; lay on arms in line; traveled 30 miles to-day.
On the morning of the 13th, received orders to march at 4 a. m. direct to Marshall, Mo.; marched pursuant to orders; arrived at Marshall about 7 a. m.; found no enemy; ordered men to feed horses; picketed different roads. At 8 o'clock pickets on the road east of Marshall, leading to Arrow Rock, gave the alarm of the approach of the enemy. Lieutenant-Colonel Lazear ordered me to hold the enemy with my command until he could get his line formed. I ordered Captain Joe Parke, with Company E, Fourth Missouri State Militia Cavalry, down to skirmish with the enemy, which he did in good style. I then moved my other squadrons, A, B, and F, to his support. The enemy soon made his appearance in force. Lieutenant-Colonel Lazear opened on the enemy with two small guns of Johnson's battery, Company L, First Missouri State Militia Cavalry, on my right, doing no execution. About this time the roar of musketry told that the battle had begun. The enemy made a desperate effort to force his way into town on the road from the east, but was repulsed.
We fought some three hours, when the roar of a different gun was heard in their rear, which told that General Brown was there. In a very short time the enemy had begun his retreat, General Shelby, with about tow-thirds of the command, going north and northwest, and Colonel Hunter, who was cut off from main force, going east some 8 miles, and then south with the balance of command, leaving one piece of artillery and other arms.