to support the Eighty-THIRD Ohio and Sixty-seventh Indiana. I believe the advance was made in a manner which met the approval of the general commanding.
On May 17, the regiment took part in the battle of Black River Bridge, and continued the reserve, when the Sixtieth Tennessee Regiment surrendered to the brigade; three hundred and sixty stand of arms captured, the destruction of which was assigned to this regiment, and they were accordingly destroyed under my supervision.
I have little to say of the affairs which took place under the walls of the forts near this city on the 20th and 22nd instant. Whatever name may be given to them, they were, in reality, nothing more than reconnaissances in force, and should be so regarded.
On the 20th, my whole regiment was deployed as skirmishers, and did their duty most gallantly. Lieutenant A. J. McFarlane was wounded severely while leading his men against the enemy, however concealed in the fallen timber in front of one of their forts. Later in the day Lieutenant Bull was wounded.
On the 22nd, the brigade aided in shutting up a large number of the enemy in one of their forest so closely that they could neither discharge their cannon nor their small-arms. Here Lieutenant Starks was wounded, and Sergeants [Judson A.] Lewis, company C, and [Daniel] Eder, Company D, were killed. Our gallant soldiers seemed determined to get inside the fort by some means. Not being able to scale its walls, they tried to dig them down, and not succeeding in this, they hailed with cheers the cannon which had been ordered up, and two of the companies of my regiment (B and E) dragged it up the hill to the walls of the forest, where it was most vigorously served. It was too late in the day, however, to accomplish the desired result. Heavy re-enforcements poured in to aid the enemy, and all that we could do was, with the aid of a covering brigade, to retire in good order. The fire of musketry was the hottest that I have ever seen, and the bravery of our soldiers under it is beyond all praise.
All of my officers behaved with distinguished gallantry. Lieutenant -Colonel Vilas and Major Hill proved themselves to be brave and skillful leaders, and handled the men intrusted to their charge with much skill.
Being in command of the reserve, my work principally consisted in guarding against attempts of the enemy to turn our right flank, several of which were made, and all of which failed.
Our total killed, wounded, and MISSING in these engagements were:
Engagements Killed Wounded Missing
At Port Gibson, --- 1 ---
At Midway Hill, --- 3 ---
At Black River --- 1 1
Bridge, May 17
At Vicksburg, May 3 14 ---
At Vicksburg, May 2 28 2
Total 5 47 3
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. J. GUPPEY,
Lieutenant R. CONOVER,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.