War of the Rebellion: Serial 037 Page 0439 Chapter XXXVI. EXPEDITION TO MECHANICSBURG, MISS., ETC.

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companies strong) halting and making a stubborn resistance behind the crest hills. At one such place I sent back for artillery, when one piece of Taylor's Chicago battery was brought up and threw several shell, dislodging them from a strong position.

Arriving in sight of Mechanicsburg, we discovered the enemy getting a gun in position on the hill between the town and us, but we came on them so suddenly that, without firing, they withdrew to the rear of the village, and opened on us from two pieces with shell and grape. Here I ordered the two reserve companies to the front, and we passed through town driving the rebel skirmishers to their main force, estimated at from 1,500 to 2,000 under command of General Adams, which was in line of battle supporting their artillery. In the ditches in the rear of town we held the ground for half and hour, when our battery came up and opened on the enemy, silencing their guns and starting them from their position.

Shortly afterward detachments of the Fourth Iowa and FIFTH Illinois Cavalry arrived by another road, and started in pursuit. Generals Kimball, and Mower arrived on the ground, and I was ordered to call in my men and join the command when the column should come up.

I had only 2 men severely wounded in the skirmishes. We wounded 3 and captured 2 of the rebels before reaching the town, and several on the other side of town.

Respectfully submitted.


Captain Company F, commanding Advance Guard.

Lieutenant E. T. SPRAGUE,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, SECOND Brigade.

Number 4. Report of Major General William W. Loring, c. S. Army, commanding DIVISION. Headquarters, 3 1/2 MILES WEST OF BIG BLACK, June 5, 1863.

MAJOR: I send you three dispatches, with explain themselves. It looks to me that the enemy would not burn and destroy if they intended to advance far. I can but think it is simply a devastating party. The camp Here is scare of water. It lies in pools not running. I learn that the most water in advance of this is 6 miles, to Cypress Creek, to which point in my become necessary to go for a supply. I will see in the morning what impression the command makes upon the pools Here.

With respect,



Major [A. P.] MASON,

Assistant Adjutant-General.


Headquarters DIVISION,

June 5, 1863.

GENERAL: I send you general a letter from General Adams, it will explain matters. I HEAR OF NO IMMEDIATE ADVANCE UPON ME., I will


*Walker to Loring, following, and Adams' reports of June 5 and 6 to Robinson, pp. 441,442.

+See of June 5, p. 441.