wounded. Although this skirmish was of very minor importance in the presence of so large an army, yet I am highly gratified with the conduct of the officers and men, who, on a small picket post, learned the rebels from the first than on this expedition it was our intention neither to stop nor to retire, but to advance always.
At Saulsbury, on the 4th of July, I was joined by a detachment of the regiment, numbering 102 men and 5 officers, making my strength 470 enlisted men and 26 officers.
On the 6th and 7th we advanced on toward Ripley, reaching within four miles of that place of the THIRD Cavalry Brigade.
On the 8th, advancing through Ripley, this regiment was, under the orders of the general commanding the DIVISION, sent on a reconnoitering expedition toward Kelly's Mill, the main column marching to Orizaba. I proceeded with a heavy advance guard about four miles in the direction required, meeting within half a mile of the point of departure a very considerable breast-work on the brow of a hill, very difficult of approach, but which the enemy vacated on the approach on two flaking companies, thrown out on either hand, they being also intimated no doubt by the appearance of our other troops on the main road. The road to Kelly's Mill was much traveled by cavalry, as were the many cross-roads which intersected it frequently. Having become satisfied that the rebel force was in good position at Kelly's Ford, to the number of at least 1,000, and that more were upon my flanks, as instructed I returned leisurely to camp, although as soon as we began to retire we were assailed upon the flank by a party of the enemy. We killed 1, wounded 1, and took 1 prisoner, receiving no loss in return. I am gratified to state that on reporting to the general, that my action on this duty met his full approval.
On the 9th we reached New Albany, crossing the Tallahatchie.
Fourth Iowa Cavalry having the advance of the column. The Fourth having met the enemy in some force and driven him from a hill, to ascend which, dismounted, was most exhausting on that very warm day, my command was ordered to their relief, thereby taking the advance. The enemy still showed resistance, but was constantly driven by the advance guard, consisting of Companies I and M, under Captain Johnson of Company M, until we reached the intersection of the Ripley and Pontotoc road with that which we were upon, when the infantry came up an we encamped. The horse of Thomas Brown, private, Company M, and who himself afterward fell at Old Town (or Tishomingo) Creek, was killed while driving the enemy on this day.
On the 11th of July we marched to Pontotoc.
On the 12th, under the instructions of General Grierson, with my command I advanced on the Houston road, while the Ninth Illinois Cavalry proceeded on the road to Okolona, the enemy, as it was supposed, being in position at a short distance from our pickets. My column was fired upon as soon as it proceeded beyond the picket- post from a force posted on a high hill beyond a creek running at its base. Dismounting a battalion and putting them on the right of the road, I pushed forward the main column and succeeded in getting possession of the hill without loss, but with great physical labor to the dismounted men on account of the heat of the weather and the roughness of the ground.
General Grierson came up at this time, and under his direction a picket was posted, securing this hill a battalion strong, under the immediate command of Captain John Brown. Remaining at this point something