the difficulties of crossing the Hatchie River, I was unable to reach Ripley until 12. 30 p. m. 18th instant.
Having formed a junction With your command, and reported that a body of the enemy estimated by the people to be 300 strong, had passed down the Hatchie River the evening before, I acted under your command, camping on the Troy road, near the Tippah County poor-house.
At daylight, 19th instant, With Squadron K of my battalion as advanced guard, we moved through Ripley and south on the main Pontoc road. At New Albany, on the Tallahatchee River, we encountered a small body of rebels about 200 strong; a short skirmish ensued, when they fired. I learned that General Ruggles had left that point of the 17th instant, With about 200 strong; a short skirmish ensued, when they fled. I learned that General Ruggles and left that point on the 17th instant, With about 2,000 men and four pieces of artillery.
We agin marched south on the Pontotoc road to within 12 miles of Pontotoc. Reaching that point at dark, turned thence to the right, to reach the Pontotoc and Roclu Ford road, encountering a very difficult swamp, which detained me until near morning. Halting two hours to rest and feed, we agin started, With my battalion as rear guard, squadron H. Lieutenant J. E. Overturf commanding, in the extreme rear. We reached the Pontotoc road, and proceeded on that a short distance, and struck the extensive bottoms of Mud Creek.
Before the train had gotten over the first bayou of the bottom, we were impetuously attacked by a large force of rebel cavalry, who drove in the rear vedettes, but were gallantly checked by Lieutenant Overturf, who formed his squadron and was returning the charge, but was compelled to retire by overwhelming numbers. I immediately formed the battalion. THE rebels had dismounted, and, owing to the dense undergrowth and the black jack forests, I could not charge them, and was compelled to fight them under the disadvantage of being mounted and they dismounted, the train being so close that I had not time to dismount after discovering the large force of the enemy, which I estimated at 600 men and four pieces of artillery engaged.
By pushing them gallantly, my men drove them back upon their main line. When learning that the train was well over the first stream, and the infantry dismounted, I brought my men back over the stream and dismming a line of the right flank of the infantry. The enemy pressed forward to within 15 paces of the new line, being concealed by the bushes, when a severe light ensued, and he was repulsed from the whole line.
He again advanced, and was repulsed With severe loss each time, when our men being ordered to fall back to the SECOND creek, did so, closely pressed by overwhelming numbers. The enemy were again repulsed from the whole line. He in the mean time opened With his artillery, but did no execution.
The brigade being destroyed over the main creek, and the pintle hook and trail of the rear caisson being broken in the only ford, it had to be abandoned. The wagons and one ambulance being in the rear of it, they also had to be abandoned. They other With their most valuable contents, were pretty effectually destroyed.
The enemy failed to press any farther than the main creek, and the column being reformed we proceeded in the direction of Rocky Ford, which place we reached, and crossed the Tallahatchee River without molestation.
During the skirmish at Mud Creel, which lasted about two hours, the casualties to my command were as follows: Major J. S. Smith wounded through calf of left leg. Company E-Sergt. A. E. Haseltine wounded through left thigh, private Elihu Paxson wounded in left shoulder,