of a detachment of the SECOND Illinois Cavalry, under Lieutenant-Colonel Bush, and soon after by his artillery and infantry, which were boldly advanced across the open fields to the creek. Overcoming the resistance of the enemy, and driving him from his cover, General Hovey pushed forward a portion of his command beyond the creek and secured the crossing.
My loss in this skirmish was 4 men wounded. The loss of the enemy is unknown, but must have been greater. On the same day, General Sherman seized the crossing of Turkey Creek, a few miles to my right, and General McPherson, after a sharp skirmish, seized Raymond, still farther to the right. The flight of the enemy from Raymond, left the way open to Jackson, the capital of Mississippi, and Major-General Grant determined to march his army in that direction. This involved a change in the direction of its movements. Up to this time Edwards Station, to which I had been leading the advance, was the objective point. There it was known the enemy had concentrated a considerable force and intended to accept battle when offered. Jackson now became the objective point.
Hence, on the night of the 12th, I was ordered by Major-General Grant to move the following morning, on the north side of Fourteen-Mile Creek, to Raymond. At this time my corps rested within 4 miles of Edwards Station, with an outpost only 3 and a picket only 2 miles from that place. The outpost of the enemy had been driven back from the creek, and he was fully advised of the fact and of our proximity. The movement ordered was a delicate and hazardous one, but was calculated to deceive the enemy as to our design.
To insure it against casualties, as far as possible, I ordered General Hovey to advance his DIVISION early on the morning of the 13th a mile on the main road to Edwards Station, and to form it in line of battle across the road. The movement was happily executed, and had the effect to throw the enemy upon his defense against apprehended attack. Meanwhile Osterhaus' and Carr's DIVISIONS crossed the creek, and, filing by the flank to the rear, and under cover of Hovey's line, crossed Baker's Creek, a mile eastward, on the road to Raymond, and halted. Hovey's DIVISION followed in successive detachments, under cover of woods. The movement was discovered by the enemy too late to allow him to prevent or embarrass it. His attack upon the rear guard was hesitating and feeble, and was promptly and completely repulsed. All were now safe beyond Baker's Creek.
On the same morning General Smith's DIVISION, after destroying Montgomery's bridge, hastened back on the south side of the creek, in pursuance of Major-General Grant's order, to Old Auburn, to guard and bring forward to Raymond the army's trains. That night the same DIVISION rested at Old Auburn, while the remaining three DIVISIONS rested on the Raymond road, between Turkey Creek and Raymond.
The morning of the 14th found General Grant's direction, I ordered to garrison that place. On the same day, in pursuance of like direction, Generals Carr's and Hovey's DIVISIONS marched through Raymond in a heavy rain-storm; the former to Forest Hill Church, within 6 miles of General Sherman's position at Jackson, the latter to a creek within 4 miles of General McPherson's position at Clinton. This was the most fatiguing and exhausting day's march that had been made.
That night I received a dispatch from Major-General Grant, informing me that the enemy had retreated from Jackson, and was probably attempting to reach Vicksburg in advance of us, and ordering me immediately