o'clock, the 16th, where the cavalry was delayed until 5 p.m. to make up trains.
Reaching Winona, 12 miles, at daybreak, the 17th, it was found that the enemy, who now appeared in front, had destroyed a small bridge above town; therefore I decided to leave the trains, now composing 13 engines and 60 cars, and push forward into Grenada, where I heard of some force of the enemy being posted.
I had caused to be burned a bridge below West's Station, one below Vaiden, and two below and near Winona, that the trains could not be carried off if we should be forced to abandon them temporarily.
Under my instructions I expected to return to Winona, and run the trains to Grenada. Leaving Winona at 7.30 a.m., the column reached Duck Hill Station, 12 miles, at 11 o'clock, and was halted to feed and rest at Jackson's Creek, 11 1/2 miles from Grenada, till 3 p.m., then moved to that place, arriving at 7.
From Winona to Grenada, 25 miles, the advance, Third Iowa, was briskly skirmishing, and at Payne's plantation, 5 miles from Grenada, we came upon quite a force posted behind Berry Creek, which, however, was speedily forced to abandon the position, retreating eastward.
Upon arriving at Grenada, I found Lieutenant-Colonel Phillips, Ninth Illinois Mounted Infantry, with two brigade, 1,500 men. The railroad bridge over the Yalabusha having been burned by the enemy, Colonel Phillips, hearing nothing of our advance, and fearing an immediate attack from Jackson's cavalry, set fire to the long trains of cars and engines which he found there.
His arrival about noon had been followed by the burning of the bridges and the retiring of the enemy (at 4 o'clock), after several hours'skirmishing, with little or no loss on either side.
Colonel Phillips had retired most of his troops north of the river, intending to move northward at once, believing General Ruggles would intercept him at or near Panola.
The whole command being without rations, I decided to remain one day and procure them, and placing the Third Iowa in charge of the town, with Major Noble as provost-marshal, I caused the fires on the bridges to be extinguished and prevented the extension of a conflagration which threatened to destroy the town, two large blocks having already been burned. Keeping the entire command, except provost guard, picket, and commissary details, on the north side of the river, I had the condition of the trains examined into, and here with I submit a statement showing the number, condition, &c., of all rolling stock on the Mississippi Central and Mississippi and Tennessee Railroads.
At 4.30 a.m. the 19th instant, the entire force moved northward,via Oakland, to Panola, where the Tallahatchie was crossed during the evening of the 20th instant after a slight skirmish with some guerrillas.
On the 21st the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Phillips moved east toward Tchulahoma, while my proper command marched to the crossing of the Coldwater.
At this point the enemy was found in some force, posted on the opposite bank of the river. Directing Major Noble, with 75 men of the Third Iowa, to occupy their attention in front, I sent Major Farman, Fifth Illinois, with three companies of his own and two companies of the Third Iowa Regiment (supported by four companies of the Fifth Illinois), all dismounted, with instructions to cross the