War of the Rebellion: Serial 073 Page 0793 Chapter L. REPORTS, ETC.-ARMY OF THE CUMB'D (CAVALRY).

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vicinity, their improvement in most cases was very slow, and great numbers of them died and many were abandoned. There was very little mounted duty performed by the brigade during the month of May. Occasionally a small scouting party was sent out. All picketing was done on foot.

During the month of June the headquarters of the brigade remained at Wauhatchie, scouting parties being sent out daily in the direction of and beyond Trenton. On 18th of June, pursuant to orders received from Major General J. B. Steedman, commanding District of the Etowah, I proceeded to La Fayette, Ga., with detachments of the Fourth, Sixth, and Seventh Kentucky Cavalry, in all 450 men, for the purpose of grazing the horses of the detachment, and to endeavor to rid the country of several guerrilla bands which were said to be infesting it. Scouting parties were sent out daily in all directions, but met with little success. Captain Coffman, Sixth Kentucky, with sixty men, captured a rebel mail at Gaylesville on 21st. On 24th June, La Fayette was attacked by a body of rebel cavalry, about 3,000 strong, under command of Brigadier General Gideon J. Pillow. They made the attack about 3 o'clock in the morning, rushing upon the pickets and overwhelming them, and charging furiously into the town and through the detachment of Seventh Kentucky Cavalry, Colonel J. K. Faulkner commanding, and cutting them of entirely from the main body of the command, capturing about 40 of them. As soon as the firing began, Captain Bacon, with the detachment of Fourth Kentucky, was ordered to take possession of the court-house; and taking the detachment of Sixth Kentucky (mounted), Major W. H. Fidler, commanding, I moved down the street to meet the enemy, who was now charging madly up it. After a severe fight of about a half hour, we were compelled to retire before vastly superior numbers of the enemy; not, however, until we had inflected a severe loss in killed, wounded, and prisoners upon them. My command then dismounted and retired into the court-house, jail, and several strong brick buildings in the vicinity, barricading the doors and windows with sacks of grain, and making loop-holes in the walls. The prisoners then, 40 in number, were put into the court-house. After fighting from the houses for two hours, General Pillow sent in a formal demand for the surrender of the place and my forces, stating that he had the force to take us and intended to do it, and that if he couldn't drive us from our position with shot and shell, he would resort to the torch to effect his object.

In reply to his demand, I respectfully declined to surrender; where upon the attack was renewed with great fury, and raged for full three hours, the rebels charging up to the very doors of the houses in which we were, and at each charge leaving a number killed and wounded, some of their dead being found within five feet of the court-house door. During the fight a great number of our horses, which were hitched around the houses, were killed, and many broke loose and were taken off by the enemy. About 8.30 o'clock the Fourth Kentucky Mounted Infantry, Colonel Croxton commanding, appearing, the rebels began to beat a hasty retreat, when I immediately ordered every man who had a horse left to mount, and with these, and one company of Fourth Kentucky Mounted Infantry, pursued them about five miles, capturing a number of prisoners. During the whole engagement every officer and man of my command behaved with as much coolness and gallantry as the most requiring could ask. Our loss in the engagement was 4 men killed, 1 officer, Cap-