I cannot help but speak in the highest terms of Lieutenant Robert S. Gray, Sergt. John McGeorg, and in fact of every man belonging to my battery. They have done no more than their duty, but they did it cheerfully, and the cases of Sergt. Peter S. Wyman, who was killed while spiking the last gun, [and] Private Richard Ray, who was shot because he refused the surrender, certainly speaks well for their bravery.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
FRANCIS DE GRESS,
Captain, Commanding Company H, First Illinois Light Artillery.
Captain G. LOFLAND,
Asst. Adjt. General, Second Division, 15th Army Corps.
Reports of Brigadier General John E. Smith, U. S. Army, commanding Third Division, of affairs (May 17) at Madison Station, Ala., and (August 15) near Tilton, Ga.
HDQRS. THIRD DIVISION, FIFTEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Huntsville, Ala., May 18, 1864.
I have the honor to submit the following report concerning the recent movements of troops under my command for your information:
Learning that the enemy had crossed the river and was concentrating near Florence, on the 12th instant I telegraphed Brigadier General W. Q. Gresaham, stationed at Athens, to direct Colonel Rowett to move with his command and Ninth Ohio Cavalry on Florence, and ascertain the amount of force gathered there, and, if he was not sufficiently strong to drive him across the river, to learn all facts connected therewith and report as soon as possible.
About 9.30 a. m. yesterday, the 17th instant, a man belonging to the detachment of Fifth Iowa Infantry, stationed at Indiana Creek, came in and reported that Madison Station had been attacked, and that heavy cannonading was heard in that direction. Soon after, a man belonging to the Thirteenth Illinois Infantry reached town, stating that the station had been attacked from all directions by a large force, estimated at from 1,000 to 3,000 men, with four pieces of artillery, and that as the regiment was entirely surrounded it would no doubt be captured. He also stated that the attack was made at 8 a. m., while mounting guard,and that the first that was known of the presence of the enemy they were firing into their camp. Upon hearing this report, and learning that a train of cars which started out in the morning had just returned, I immediately ordered out the Fifth Ohio Cavalry, and also ordered up from Whitesburg the Eighteenth Wisconsin Infantry, and directed Colonel G. B. Raum, commanding Second Brigade, stationed at Larkinsville, to send by train one regiment of his command. While waiting the arrival of these regiments, proceeded to arm all detachments, convalescent soldiers, teamsters, &c., unarmed, in order that every man could be made available, and at the same time made preparations for defense in and around town by placing cotton in position, and also putting ammunition, &c., in secure and accessible places. About 10 o'clock I started by train the Fifty-ninth Indiana Infantry, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Scott, toward Madison, with intention to hold the balance of the force in town, having heard that the enemy had