War of the Rebellion: Serial 057 Page 0376 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N.GA. Chapter XLIV.

Search Civil War Official Records

General Jackson to withdraw my command and take position near the breast-works west of Jackson. Apprehending that the enemy might make a flank movement on the road leading from Clinton via Mississippi Springs to Jackson, I sent out some scouts to ascertain if such was the case. They not reporting, I sent out a company from the Twenty-eighth, under Captain Ratliff, who reported immediately that they were advancing on that road in force with infantry, cavalry, and artillery, and were then nearer Jackson, the point we were falling back to than the position held by our troops. I immediately sent a staff officer to inform General Jackson of the fact, and that I would withdraw my brigade and try to get to Jackson before the enemy and intercept him there. He meeting up with General Lee, delivered the message to him. I withdrew the brigade by regiments- my battery not having been ordered back to me at this time-in their regular order to Jackson, when I received an order from General Lee to move my column out on the road leading from Jackson to Canton. Here the roads and streets were much obstructed by large numbers of stragglers and hangers-on of the army in their flight. I moved my column on to reach the bridge where the road leading from Clinton intersects the Canton and Jackson road, supposing the enemy might move in that direction from Clinton, as they had troops enough to make any move they chose, and intercept the passage of our trains across the bridge.

On reaching Hanging Moss Creek, 4 miles north of Jackson, I came up with General Lee's quartermaster, in charge of all the trains. Halted my command, took position, and at this time was joined by General Lee, who informed me that General Ferguson was guarding with his brigade the road leading from Clinton to the bridge, when I bivouacked at this point for the night and remained three days, until it was discovered that the enemy were crossing Pearl River at Jackson, in the direction of Meridian. After crossing Pearl River I was under the immediate command of General Jackson, and was marching in the rear of flank of the enemy for several days, and became again engaged with him near Meridia on the 14th ultimo. The First Mississippi was placed in line on the road leading from Meridian to Demopolis, and a mounted squadron from the Twenty-eighth Mississippi Regiment on right of road near hospital, and skirmished briskly with them at that point, when they fell back to a position in the rear of the Twenty-eighth Mississippi Regiment, which was formed in line dismounted. This regiment then engaged them and fell back in rear of Ballentine's regiment, which was formed in line mounted, the enemy in the mean time keeping up a brisk fire from his artillery and infantry. I then withdrew my brigade and formed it in line on the west side of the railroad, their right resting on it, which position I held until the enemy had advanced in force, when I withdrew my command on the road leading from Meridian to Demopolis, and skirmished with him there. When compelled to fall back, did so on the road leading from Meridian toward Lauderdale Springs, and bivouacked for the night at


. My artillery was not present this day, having been ordered back toward Enterprise by General Jackson, they not being able to keep up with the column, which was moving rapidly toward Meridian, in order to reach that point before the enemy.

I remained in the vicinity of Meridian for three days, and then proceeded to Lauderdale Springs via Alamutche, moving from that point to Starkville via Macon to meet the column advancing down