Brashear City. Here, owing to the swampy nature of the country, we were delayed some time in finding a landing place; but at length succeeded, and about sunrise commenced to disembark my troops, the men wading out in water from 2 to 3 feet deep to the shore, shoving their boats into deep water as they left them. Thus cutting off all means of retreat, we could only fight and win. We were again delayed here a short time in finding a road, but succeeded at length in finding a trail that led us by a circuitous route through a palmetto swamp, some 2 miles across, through which I could only move in single file.
About 5.30 we reached open ground in the rear of and in full view of Brashear City, about 800 yards distant. I here halted the command, and, after resting a few minutes, again moved on, under cover of a skirt of timber, until within 400 yards of the enemy's position, where I formed my men in order of battle. Finding myself discovered by the enemy, I determined to charge at once, and, dividing my command into two columns, ordered the left (composed of Captains [J. P.] Clough, of [Thomas] Green's regiment [Fifth Texas Cavalry]; [W. A.] McDade, of Waller's battalion; [J. T.] Hamilton, of [L. C.] Rountree's battalion, and [J. D.] Blair, of Second Louisiana Cavalry) to charge the fort and camp below and to the left of th depot, and the right (composed of Captains [James H.] Price, [D. C.] Carrington, and [R. P.] Boyce, all of [G. W.] Baylor's Texas cavalry) to charge the fort and the sugar-house above and on the right of the depot; both columns to concentrate at the railroad buildings, at which point the enemy were posted in force and under good cover, each column having nearly the same distance to move, and would arrive simultaneously at the point of concentration. Everything being in readiness, the command was given, and the troops moved on with a yell. Being in full view, we were subjected to a heavy fire from the forts above and below, the gun at the sugar-house, and gunboats below town, but, owing to the rapidity of our movements, it had but little effect. The forts made but a feeble resistance, and each column pressed on to the point of concentration, carrying everything before them. At the depot the fighting was severe, but of short duration, the enemy surrendering the town.
My loss is 3 killed and 18 wounded; that of the enemy, 46 killed, 40 wounded, and about 1,300 prisoners. We have captured eleven 24 and 32 pounder siege guns; 2,500 stand of small-arms (Enfield and Burnside rifles), and immense quantities of quartermaster's commissary, and ordnance stores, some 2,000 negroes, and between 200 and 300 wagons and tents.
I cannot speak too highly of the gallantry and good conduct of the officers and men under my command. All did their whole duty, and deserve alike equal credit from our country for our glorious and signal victory.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major, Baylor's (Texas) Cavalry, Commanding Mosquito Fleet.
Brigadier General ALFRED MOUTON,
Commanding South Red River.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF WESTERN LOUISIANA,
Thibodeaux, July 6, 1863.
I would respectfully call the attention of the lieutenant-general commanding to the gallantry and meritorious services of Major Hunter and