into town at about 3.30 p.m., and immediately commenced the destruction of the cars and locomotives.
They were so closely packed together as to make a small town of themselves. The amount of rolling stock here was immense. I immediately detailed parties to count the cars and locomotives while other squads were setting the fires.
Soon after the fires were set an engineer came to me and reported a Federal force below, and that they were trying to save the property, while citizens reported that there could be no truth in the statement, st they were informed that the Federals had captured a train at Durant, some ways below, but that Jackson's cavalry had recaptured the train and driven the Federals away.
Having much doubt as to which was true, I reported to you for further instructions, when you decided that it was impossible to get the rolling stock off with the force we had were the bridges perfect, and that the bridges having been so perfectly destroyed, and there being certainty of assistance from below, we had better complete the destruction and return home.
The destruction resulted, as near ad I could estimate, as follows;
Sixty locomotives (40 in good running order), and some 500 cars of all kinds, coaches, sleeping cars, freight cars, flats, &c. Some few of these were not completely destroyed, but very few were left that were not disabled.
There were two depots, one a very fine one, destroyed; also two large machine-shops, containing a large amount of machinery; also two large steam flouring mills, containing each not less than 1,000 sacks of flour and meal. There were some ten flats leaded with army wagons - the number I did not learn - which were all burned.
At sundown the destruction was thorough and complete, and in obedience to your orders, I moved my brigade across to the north side, after having procured forage out of different cribs in town. In obedience to your instruction, I remained in bivouac during the 18th.
At daylight of the 19th, we started on our return north, passing thorough Oakland, Panola, Bucksnort, Wall Hill, Holly Springs, Lamar, and La Grange, which latter place I reached on Sunday, the 23rd, after an absence of eleven days.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
DATUS E. COON,
Major, Second Iowa Cavalry, Comdg. Second Brigade.
No. 6. Report of Lieutenant Colonel Martin R. M. Wallace, Fourth Illinois Cavalry.
HEADQUARTERS FOURTH ILLINOIS CAVALRY, Collierville, Tenn., August 23, 1863.
SIR: In pursuance of duty, I have the honor to report that in obedience to orders from Colonel L. F. McCrillis, commanding First Brigade, Cavalry Division, Sixteenth Army Corps, I assumed command of said brigade on the 13th day of August, and on that day, in obedience to instruction from Colonel Mizner, chief of cavalry, Left Wing, Sixteenth Army Corps, I proceeded, with a force of 720 enlisted men from the Third, Fourth, and Ninth Illinois Cavalry, by