JULY 31, 1863. -Skirmish at Saint Catharine's Creek, near Natchez, MISS.
Report of Brigadier General Thomas E. G. Ransom, U. S. Army.
HEADQUARTERS UNITED STATES FORCES,
Natchez, July 31, 1863.
COLONEL: Yesterday and last night and received information, trough my scouts and trough negroes and others, that [J. L.]Logan's mounted men about 1,500, were moving on Natchez, and would probably reaches here this morning. I made every preparation to receive them. They approached about sunrise on the Washington road. My advanced pickets had been sufficiently strengthened to check their advance. I at once sent Major Worden with his mounted men to reconnoiter the flanks, sent out parties to vedettes on all the roads, and moved a regiment of infantry a section of artillery to the support of the mounted men. The enemy fell back at our approach, and sent fire to two bridges over Saint Catharine's Creek. Major Worden forded the creek at another point and commenced skirmishing, the enemy still falling back. He continued to drive them slowly, keeping up a desultory fight upon noon, when they made a stand, and formed line of battle on a rise of ground about 11 miles out and in a southeasterly direction from Washington. Major Worden's force being to small to attack them in their position, and discovering an attempt of the enemy to turn his flank, he fall back half a mile, where he met and attacked a party of about 100 men who had been sent to his rear, routing the party and taking prisoners a lieutenant and 16 men. He then fell back about 3 miles, took a good position, and waited for an attack several hours.
No further demonstration being made by the enemy, I drew in Major Worden's force.
The enemy lost Colonel [Frank P.]Powers, chief of cavalry for Logan, killed, 12 to 15 men wounded, and 45 prisoners. Not a man of ours was lost, and but 2 slightly wounded.
Logan's command is now in camp 12 miles from here. With 500 good cavalry I could capture them if they remain in the country. Prisoners report tdered back here to collect stock and negroes. He is now engaged in driving them and collecting them to drive out of the country.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
T. E. G. RANSOM,
Lieutenant Colonel W. T. CLARK,
Assistant Adjutant-General, SEVENTEENTH Army Corps.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE,
Vicksburg, MISS., August 5, 1863.
Respectfully forwarded to headquarters of the army.
Cavalry have gone to Natchez, and have been ordered to clear the country of Logan's cavalry and then direct their attention to [Isaac F.] Harrison's, on the Louisiana side.
U. S. GRANT,