first high ground toward the enemy, opening with two of the 2-pounders on their guns, and pushing my skirmishers and line forward to a good position, and having but 450 men to fight (it required one-half of my command to take care of the animals) against from what I could ascertain from prisoners was from 1,000 to 2,000 men. One of the enemy's guns getting into position in a point of woods on my right, gave me considerable trouble until we drove it from its position with the 2-pounders and skirmishers. I here awaited the enemy's attack, who continued shelling the road and woods in the swamp.
An hour having passed, and my led animals having crossed the stream, and safe from the enemy's shells, and the enemy declining to attack, I crossed the bridge and did not destroy it, meaning to allow Chalmers to cross one-half of his command and then attack him. Waiting some time, and finding that the enemy did not follow, I pushed rapidly to the Coldwater, which point, I had every reason to believe, the enemy had sent a force to hold, but I hoped to crush it before Chalmers could come up. On reaching this crossing, there was evidence that the force we had expected to contest the passage, had decamped hurriedly, moving WEST. Camped that night near Goldwater. During the night many of the negroes, for some reason, either from the fear that the camp would be shelled or from hunger-it being impossible for us to furnish food-escaped with animals, some returning south, others pushing for our lines. I marched to LA Grange on the 15th. We captured about 600 mules and horses. The weather being very warm, and the marches long and rapid, nearly 100 of our old horses were abandoned. The casualties are 2 men MISSING, one of them probably killed; 2 seriously wounded, and 5 horses killed. * My skirmishers punished the enemy severely. The command marched about 160 miles.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Colonel SECOND Iowa Cavalry, Commanding Brigade.
Captain WILLIAM H. MORGAN,
Numbers 2. Report of Brigadier General James R. Chalmers, C. S. Army, commanding Military District, of skirmish (14th). NEAR LOOXAHOMA, MISS., May 16, 1863.22
After making a forced march Wednesday night (13th), I overtook Hatch's force, about 1,100 strong, at Temperance Hall; pursued him for 12 miles without being able to force a general engagement. Captured 12 of his men and some horses, and killed and wounded a few. At 2 o'clock next morning move to Cockrum's Cross-Roads, where the THIRD and NINTH Illinois Cavalry, with two 12-pounder howitzers, were camped. They left before my arrival. I followed them across Coldwater in direction of Germantown, to within 8 miles of that place; captured 4 and killed and wounded about 20.
JAMES R. CHALMERS,
General JOSEPH E. Johnston, Canton.
*List of casualties shows 2 men wounded and 2 MISSING.