The FIFTY-sixth Ohio and Forty-seventh Indiana opened upon their line in front, and the Twenty-fourth Indiana on their flank, a most terrific and jarring fire, which arrested their charge and threw them into some confusion, but they soon recovered, and returned our fire with great spirit and pertinacity for about two hours, when the rebel survivors fled in utter confusion, leaving their dead and wounded upon the ground.
During this engagement the two batteries in my command located on the hill to our right and rear threw shell and shrapnel into the enemy's ranks, which created great havoc. In this engagement the FIFTH Missouri (rebel) Regiment was almost totally annihilated, there being but 19 of them left, who were taken prisoners. With this contest closed the battle on the right, and it was a fair, square fight of regiment against regiment, of about equal numbers and equally armed, resulting in the complete triumph of the troops of Indiana and Ohio over the chivalric braggarts and flower of the Southern Army.
During the several engagements of my command many prisoners were taken, but they were sent to the rear, and placed in charge of the provost marshal, without any account of the number being taken thereof.
The reports of the various commanders of my brigade are herewith inclosed, and make a part of this.
To the cool and gallant conduct of all the field an line officers, and the persevering determination of each and every one in my command, I cannot express too much gratitude and admiration. To them belongs the glory of the triumph, every officer and every man having done his whole duty.
My acting assistant adjutant-general, lieutenant H. G. P. Jennings, of Company C, Forty-seventh Indiana, and my aide, Lieutenant [Theodore] Schaiffer, of Company F, Twenty-eighth Iowa, reordered me most admirable service, carrying and executing orders during the whole day.
I would call special attention to Private George Phillips,
Company K, FIFTY-sixth Ohio Infantry, who acting in the capacity of messenger for me during the whole day, was constantly with me when not absent temporarily upon some duty, never flinching from danger in the thickest of the battle, collected and calm; he is well worthy of promotion.
The whole number of casualties are: Killed, 16; wounded, 62; MISSING,
11-in all, 89.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAMES R. SLACK,
Colonel, comdg. SECOND Brigadier, TWELFTH Div., THIRTEENTH Army Corps.
Captain John E. PHILLIPS, assistant Adjutant-General.
Number 15. Report of Lieutenant Colonel John A. McLaughlin, Forty-seventh Indiana Infantry. HDQRS. FORTY-SEVENTH Regiment INDIANA VOL. INFANTRY, Willow Springs, MISS., May 5, 1863.
COLONEL: In compliance with orders, I proceed to give you a detailed account of the part borne by the regiment under my command (the Forty-seventh Indiana Volunteer Infantry) in the battle of Port Gibson, MISS., on the 1st instant.
At about 6. 30 a. m. we formed line of battle on the extreme right of the SECOND Brigade, where the battle immediately opened upon the part