field on the right of the road and resist the enemy, who was pressing on the rear. My regiment was immediately formed, as directed, and was soon engaged in a sharp skirmish with them, lasting about fifteen minutes, and completely checking the head of their column. A movement by them on my flank obliged me to retire, but not until the entire brigade had passed by me and was retiring.
I retired about 2 miles farther and formed my command on the right of the road, the Fourth Tennessee, Lieutenant-Colonel Thornburgh, being on the left. No fighting ensued here, as I was ordered to fall back as successive lines were formed in my rear.
My regiment was formed some even or eight times during the day on the rear and flanks of the brigade, and, although twice under fire, we were unable to return it from our position and the short range of our carbines.
Just at dusk we were formed in line, dismounted, and behind a fence to the right of the road. At this point a battery and the regiment supporting it were forced to retire in some confusion by a heavy force of the enemy. The battery was in the rear, and when my men opened fire the enemy were in close pursuit and ordering the artillerists to halt. Their advance was soon driven back to the main body, and a sharp fight maintained for about twenty minutes, the enemy using a few pieces of light artillery. They then fell back, however, and I was soon after ordered to follow in rear of the brigade. Night had now set in, only a few more shots were exchanged till daylight.
The next morning, the 23rd instant, my regiment was moved out in the advance of the brigade, and about 10 a.m. was ordered to the rear of the division, with the Third Illinois Cavalry, Captain Kirkbride commanding, the enemy being reported pressing the rear.
I then had about 150 men in my command, many having had their horses shot under them in the previous day's fighting and others being broken down. I formed the regiment as directed dismounted, and on the right and left of the road, and Third Illinois being on my left. After waiting half an hour or more for the enemy, a few appeared, but a few shots dispersed them, and as no more appeared we shortly retired in the direction of the column, the Third Illinois being in my rear.
We were soon followed by the enemy, and a sudden attack made on the rear of the Third Illinois by a force far outnumbering them, which forced them to retire. I immediately formed my men on the right and left of the road and on the north side of creek to support them as they fell back.
The enemy at once opened a very hot fire upon us from the timber on the opposite side of the creek, and my men being in the open field, I ordered them to fall back to a skirt of woods on the other side of it. Another line was here formed at once, and a brisk skirmish ensued for nearly half an hour, in which, I was supported by the Third Illinois Cavalry, the enemy not being over 200 yards distant.
After they fell back I moved out toward New Albany, remaining in rear of the column till we reached the town, none of the enemy appearing in sight. Colonel McCrillis here ordered ut to rejoin the brigade and cross the Tallahatchie River. The regiment marched from there with the brigade to this point.
I cannot too highly commend the conduct of the officers and men of my regiment. All did their duty and acted in the best possible