War of the Rebellion: Serial 077 Page 0250 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter LI.

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Numbers 2. Report of Major General Andrew J. Smith, U. S. Army, commanding Right Wing, SIXTEENTH Army Corps.


Memphis, Tenn., August 5, 1864.

MAJOR: I have the honor to submit the following report of the late expedition into MISSISSIPPI under my command:

I left La Grange, Tenn., on the 5th day of July, 1864, with the following troops: First DIVISION, SIXTEENTH Army Corps, Brigadier General J. A. Mower commanding; THIRD DIVISION, SIXTEENTH Army Corps, Colonel D. Moore, Twenty-first Missouri commanding; Cavalry DIVISION, SIXTEENTH Army Corps, Brigadier General B. H. Grierson commanding; First Brigade. U. S. Colored Troops, Colonel E. Bouton commanding; the aggregate of which was about 14,000 men. They moved upon two parallel roads, viz, the infantry, artillery, and train taking the Davis' Mills road to Ripley, and the cavalry moving by the way of Grand Junction and Saulsbury, an from thence south toward Ripely. I accompanied the infantry column, giving directions to the cavalry to regulate its distance by that, and to report to me every night, and also all information which they might obtain in relation to the position, movements, and force of the enemy. We camped at Davis' Mills on the night of the 5th; continued the march on the 6th, without anything of note occurring. On the 7th the roads upon which the two columns were moving intersected about six miles north of Ripley, Miss., and the cavalry took the advance of the column, skirmishing lightly with a brigade of the enemy, driving them easily and without loss on our side, and encamped for the night at a creek about thee miles north of Ripley. Moving forward on the 8th we passed Ripley and continued south toward New Albany and Pontotoc; on the 9th crossed the Tallahatchie at New Albany; on the 10th camped about five miles north of Pontotoc. During this march the cavalry, with the exception of one regiment, the Seventh Kansas Cavalry, had, wherever it was practicable, moved by parallel roads on the left flank, and occasionally were skirmishing lightly with the enemy's scouts.

On the morning of the 11th, moving toward Pontotoc, we found McCulloch's brigade of rebel cavalry occupied the town, supported by a brigade on the hill immediately south. Throwing forward a brigade of infantry as support for the Seventh Kansas, we drove back their skirmish line, and General Grierson, attacking at the same time upon their right flank, drove them through the town and from their position on the hill, leaving their dead and12th the command remained at Pontotoc, sending forward a reconnoitering party of one regiment of cavalry (the Ninth Illinois), supported by the FIFTY-second Indiana Infantry, on the Okolona road. The lines of the enemy were developed and their pickets driven in on the main body. The enemy were discovered to be in force about nine miles from Pontotoc, on the Okolona road on the opposite side of a low swampy bottom through which run two creeks. This bottom was about a mile and a half in width, densely timbered, and which the enemy had rendered almost impassable by felling trees across the road. As they had a very strong position on a hill on the other side of the bottom, I did not deem it prudent to attack the position from