position. This reconnaissance attacked the enemy, and found him to number about 1,000 dismounted cavalry, with several pieces of light artillery. Our force, upon talling back, was pursued by the enemy a short distance. As soon as they were out of range of their breastworks, our forces turned upon them, charged them, and drove them pell-mell behind their breastworks.
Our loss, 1 man wounded and several horses killed. Three dead bodies of the enemy were found in the field and buried. It is known that their loss was much greater. On the following day I sent the whole cavalry force, with one piece of Nims' battery, and about 200 of the Seventy-fifth New York, on the gunboats Switzerland, to attack the enemy.
As soon as this force appeared in sight, the enemy fled in three direction, closely pursued by our cavalry. His main body then took position behind Cane River, and up to the time of our departure only a few of his pickets had ventured down to Cotile Bayou.
The breastworks of the enemy were found to consist of two strong parallel lines of cotton bales about 200 yards apart. We captured 6 prisoners belonging to Colonel [W. P.] Lane's Texas regiment, which left Texas two weeks ago yesterday. On the same day that this affair occurred, but a little earlier in the day, Sergeant Mallory and 9 men of Perkins' cavalry were in the pine woods after horses; in a short time they found themselves surrounded by a large force of the enemy. They seized every negro they met as a guide; in this way they gave each mounted upon a fine horse.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brigadier-General, U. S. Volunteers.
Lieutenant Colonel RICHARD B. IRWIN,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Department of the Gulf.
No. 2. Report of Colonel Sidney A. Bean, Fourth Wisconsin Infantry.
[Printed in Series I, Vol. XV, P.346.]
MAY 17, 1863.- Operations on west side of the Mississippi River, near Port Hudson, La.
Report of Lieutenant Colonel M. B. Locke, First Alabama Infantry.
MAY 18, 18683.
CAPTAIN: Yesterday at 1 o'clock I received an order through Lieutenant-Colonel [M. J.] Smith, chief of heavy artillery, from the major-general commanding, directing that I prevent the enemy above from communicating the fleet below. I immediately ordered Companies C, D, and F, of my regiment, numbering, respectively 25,45, and 48 men, to proceed across the river. My means of transportation being