86 men) and THIRD Louisiana Cavalry (150 men), who had reached me after the fight was over, on Alexander's Creek, two miles from Bayou Sara. At 9 o'clock that night Captain Foster, U. S. Navy, commanding Second District MISSISSIPPI River, came to my camp, accompanied by Major J. M. Taylor and ex-Governor R. C. Wickliffe. These gentlemen had gone to see Captain Foster to arrest his shelling the town of Saint Francisville, assuring him that the pursuit was stopped by me. His presence in my camp was unauthorized and unexpected, but as he was assured of a safe return to his boat I felt compelled to comply with the promise given.
On the morning of the 6th I marched for Clinton, having heard nothing from you since 3 p. m. on the 5th, which ordered me to send Colonels Gober and Powers back to their original positions. Four miles from Jackson I heard rumors that Colonel Gober had been whipped at Woodville, losing his artillery and many of his command. A few moments after one of my own regiment, who had been absent from his command, reported to me that th enemy were in Clinton, and that he had captured one of the pickets. A few moments afterward I received an order from you to the effect that you had left Clinton and would concentrate near Centreville, and if I was pressed to get out of the country the best way I could.
I marched through Jackson at 1 p. m. on the 6th, and at Keller's Cross-Roads I learned from one of my scouts that the force in Clinton was very small, and about the same time I heard from stragglers coming in from Gober's command that the enemy was not moving from Woodville in the direction of Liberty, and I intended to attack and capture the 200 men and occupy Clinton. I accordingly dispatched Lieutenant John W. Leake, of my staff, and Lieutenant Brown, of the scouts, with about 100 men, to cross the Comite and reach the plank road at a point near Clinton on the south side, while I, with the balance of the force, would make an attack on the morning of the 7th at daylight from the direction of Liberty.
As I was moving around on the night of the 6th to get into position I received the following order, commanding me to suspend all operations against Clinton and march to Liberty:
October 7, 1864-1. 30 a. m.
Colonel J. S. SCOTT,
Near Clinton, Osyka Road:
COLONEL: I am directed by General Hodge to say to you that you will suspend all demonstration upon Clinton and move with your whole force at once to this place, which he regards as most in danger at present. The enemy reported in heavy force at Woodville, having captured 3 guns of Holmes' battery and most of his officers and men, and moving on Liberty. Even if such were not the case, the animals of Ogden's command are altogether too much jaded to admit of any co-operation with you at Clinton. You will therefore join the main force here as soon as possible.
I am, colonel, very respectfully,
N. T. N. ROBINSON.
I reached Liberty on the morning of the 7th and reported my arrival. At about 2 p. m. I received the following order:
October 7, 1864.
Scouts on upper Natchez road report enemy advancing on Wilson's Ferry road in heavy force. You will move out with your command to meet them at once.
By order of Brigadier-General Hodge:
N. T. N. ROBINSON,
Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.