10 miles, killing and wounding a great many, for few prisoners were taken.
I had almost forgotten to mention that, during my occupation of Humansville, Lieutenant Thomas J. Keithley, of Gordon's regiment, with but 10 men, charged into Osceola, engaged a Federal force of 53, drove them from town, burned a large and strong fort, and returned without losing a man.
On the night of the 10th, a very hard rain-storm came up, and my command were thoroughly drenched, but a genial sun soon drove away the damp air, and Sunday morning came with its golden glow and breath of ripened grain. While yet 10 miles from Boonville, the front axle of my rifled gun broke short off, and I was delayed three hours in its repair. While at work upon it, a flag of truce came our from Boonville, praying mercy and protection, with the offer of unconditional submission.
By 11 o'clock the gun was repaired, and the lofty domes and spires of the city rose towering to view. Again the flag came out, and again was mercy solicited. They knew their evil course, and they feared its consequences. The night before our arrival all the citizens had been armed and resistance determined on, but daylight brought sober reason, and the trembling mayor was only too glad to take the oath of allegiance. Now the broad bosom of the grand old Missouri lay unvailed before us in the red beams of an autumn [sun], and the men, forgetting all their privations and dangers, broke out in one long, loud, proud hurrah, which sounded above the roar of the cannon and the rattle of musketry, for drawn up on the other side in line of battle was Colonel [Odon] Guitar's regiment, having the ferry-boat in their possession. A few well-directed volleys from my artillery scattered them in every direction, and I saw them no more. In a short time a steamboat came in sight, which was loaded with troops. She was evidently suspicious, and I could [not] possibly by any stratagem decoy her within range of my artillery, and very soon she left in a hurry for Jefferson. Here my gun again broke, and I immediately [set] to work on its repair.
Meanwhile a great storm was gathering. General Brown, with 4,000 men, came up like a black cloud from Jefferson City, where he had been hurriedly concentrating expecting us to attack him there under the shadow of [Hamilton R.] Gamble's usurped dynasty, and was thundering in my rear with disappointed hate and malice. My pickets were driven in on the main body pell-mell, and the sounds of conflict came nearer and nearer. I resolved to mend my rifled gun if I had to fight to do it, so I ordered Hooper to dismount and hold the enemy in check. Gallantly he obeyed, and soon the far-away sound of battle told that his fierce charge had driven them back for some distance. Skirmishing, with now and then a hot fight, was kept up until 10 o'clock at night, when I had removed to camp, 4 miles from town, with all the stores I needed and the damaged gun thoroughly repaired. Hooper was then quietly withdrawn, and the men enjoyed a good night's repose, which the heavy rain the night before made them stand very much in need of.
At daylight the next morning (the 12th) my pickets were again driven in and the camp aroused. Forming line of battle immediately and choosing a good position, I waited an hour for General [E. B.] Brown, intending to give him battle then, but he not accepting the proffered wager, I moved out slowly on the main Marshall and Boonville road. I captured in Boonville one iron 4-pounder, which, not having any ammunition of sufficient size, was destroyed, with many stand of arms and colors. After traveling perhaps for two hours uninterruptedly, General