War of the Rebellion: Serial 034 Page 0630 Chapter XXXV. KY., MID. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA.

Search Civil War Official Records

tucky Cavalry Regiment. Lieutenant-Colonel von Helmrich and Lieutenant Garrett are missing, and probably taken prisoners. All the officers of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry Regiment are missing.

On the morning of June 29, we left Spring Creek to go to Lexington. When within 2 miles of the latter place, we were informed that a large force of rebel troops was there, probably 15,000 men, and that another force from Jackson, about 500 strong, was to attack us in our rear. Lieutenant-Colonel von Helmrich concluded to fall back to Spring Creek to avoid the cut off. When on the march back there, we were attacked by a force of about 2,000 rebels at 2 p. m., who were lying in ambush, whom we did not see till they fired upon our advance guard. Lieutenant-Colonel von Helmrich has done the best he could do, but we met with a bad fate. As we were very hardly pursued, and not able to reach Columbus, we entirely broken down, and many men without arms, and cannot be of any assistance to the fort here, we intend to leave here by the first boat, to go to Columbus.

The whole force of the enemy under command of General [R. V.] Richardson is reported to be from 20,000 to 25,000 men, well armed, and all mounted; and the nearest pickets are reported at Paris, Tenn.

I have the honor to remain, your most obedient servant,


First Lieutenant, Commanding Detachment Fourth Missouri Cavalry.

Brigadier General A. ASBOTH, Commanding District.

Numbers 3. Report of Major Wiley Waller, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry.


Fort Heiman, July 4, 1863.

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that in the absence of Lieutenant Colonel A. P. Henry, I have assumed command of this post.

On the 26th instant Lieutenant-Colonel Henry, with the entire effective force of the cavalry at this post, numbering 285, rank and file, started on an expedition against [J. B.] Biffle. He was joined by the forces under Lieutenant-Colonel von Helmrich, of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry, numbering 80, rank and file, at Paris Tenn. The forces then moved to Lexington, and from there toward Jackson, an encountered a rebel force, estimated at from 1,000 to 1,500 strong. A skirmish ensued under the direction of Lieutenant-Colonel von Helmrich, which lasted some hour and a half, when our forces retreated, and were rapidly pursued by the enemy. The rear guard made several stands, each time inflicting severe loss on the enemy.

The loss from the Fifteenth Kentucky, as near as can be ascertained, is as follows: One lieutenant-colonel, 1 captain, 3 lieutenant, 35 enlisted men, and a considerable number of horses, arms, &c.

Several of our men have returned paroled, and I would respectfully ask for instructions as to what disposition to make of them.

The situation of the cavalry at this time is bad; almost all the horses they had were engaged in the skirmish, and, after a hasty retreat of 100 miles, those that have reached camp are utterly exhausted, and will be unfit for service for some time. The force also is quite small, and unable to withstand an attack of 500 men. The enemy has a force of from 10,000 to 15,000 men within 100 miles of this post, and some small bodies