retreated in the direction of Somerset, General Gillmore pursuing with his cavalry. After frequent skirmishers, they made a stand at Somerset, where General Gillmore attacked them successfully, the details of which attack are explained by the following dispatch:
SOMERSET, KY., March 31-9 p. m.
I attacked the enemy yesterday in strong post of his own selection, defended by six cannon, near this town; fought him for five hours, driving him from one position to another, and finally stormed his position. Whipped him handsomely, and drove him in confusion toward the river. His loss is over 300 in killed, wounded, and prisoners. The enemy outnumbered us nearly two to one, and were commanded by Pegram in person. Night stopped pursuit, which will be resumed in the morning. We captured two stand of colors. Our loss in killed, wounded, and missing will not exceed 30. Scott's famous rebel regiment was cut off from the rest and scattered.
General Manson is in pursuit of portion of the force which became separated from the main body, and will probably overtake them at Burkesville, on the Cumberland River. It will be seen by this that the entire rebel force has been driven out of Central Kentucky, and much of their plunder recaptured. Their reported force has been greatly exaggerated, as well as the amount of plunder taken by them. I have this moment received this second [dispatch] from General Gillmore, dated this morning, from Stigall's Ferry, on the Cumberland River:
STIGALL'S FERRY, April 1.
I underrated enemy's force in my first report of yesterday's fight. They have ovr 2,600 men, outnumbering us moree than two to one. During the night their troops recrossed the Cumberland River in three places. We have retaken between 300 and 400 cattle. My infantry is not yet up, and will be halted. Pegram's loss will not fall short of 500 men. I will be in Lexington to-morrow.
The alacrity with which the troops weere concentrated, and the vigor and gallantry of their attacks, are highly commendable.
A. E. BURNSIDE,
Major General H. W. HALLECK, General-in-Chief.
LEXINGTON, KY., April 3, 1863-2.35 p. m.
The number of prisoners taken by Gillmore will exceed 500.
A. E. BURNSIDE,
Major-General HALLECK, General-in-Chief.
Numbers 2. Report of Major General Quincy A. Gillmore, U. S. Army, commanding District of Central Kentucky.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF SOUTH CAROLINA,
Hilton Head, S. C., November 1, 1865.
SIR: I have the honor to submit, for record in the War Department, the following report of the battle of Somerset, Ky., March 30, 1863, between the forces under my command and the enemy under General Pegram:My entire strength was 1,250 men, all mounted, and six pieces of field artillery, of which four were mountain howitzers, and of no use to us.