their gallant commanders, arriving inside the works of the enemy. The contest was short and decisive; the enemy threw down their arms and surrendered, my command capturing several hundred prisoners, among the number General Cockrell, commanding division, and Colonel Barry, Thirty-fifth Mississippi, and a number of other officers. A large amount of artillery, ordnance stores, and supplies fell into our hands, and were turned over by me to Brigadier-General Gilbert, Sixteenth Corps, in compliance with orders from Major General E. R. S. Canby.
The fight over and the victory complete, my command was ordered to move up and take position at the landing in Blakely and a portion detailed to take charge of prisoners. In passing over the ground in this gallant charge my command suffered severely both from torpedoes, which were concealed in the path over which the column passed, and from a raking fire of shot and shell from the enemy on the right, and many brave men and officers were cut down by this terrific fire a they were pushing forward. In this assault Colonel Busey, Seventy-sixth Illinois; Lieutenant-Colonel Perry, Sixty-ninth Indiana; Captains Wisner and Howard, Ninety-seventh Illinois, were severely wounded and fell while gallantly leading and cheering their men on to victory. Captain George E. Merchant, Twenty-fourth Indiana, fell mortally wounded while leading his men in this gallant and heroic charge. Many others who deserve honorable mention, and whose names appear in the list of casualties, might be mentioned here, but why should I stop to particularize or mention individual instances of bravery where every one behaved so nobly? There are good, brave, and gallant soldiers everywhere in our army, but none can surpass those composing the Second Brigade for heroic daring and gallant performance of duty.
The 9th day of April will ever be a memorable day with them, and for their gallant conduct on that occasion they are entitled and will receive our nation's thanks and blessing. But amid our rejoicing over this grand achievement and success of our arms, let us not forget the gallant dead who fell that day at their post, nobly and fearlessly doing their duty. The Seventy-sixth Illinois, Ninety-seventh Illinois, Twenty-fourth Indiana, and Sixty-ninth Indiana left traces of their brilliant dash over that field by the bodies and blood of many of their bravest and best men. Let the memories of the gallant dead that now sleep near the recent field of strife be ever cherished by their gallant comrades and by every true patriot. I must not omit to ask that honorable mention be made of Lieutenant-Colonel Vifquain* and Captain Samuel R. Howard, Ninety-seventh Illinois, who, during the whole time of our operations before Blakely, ably and zealously assisted in pushing forward the works in front of the enemy, and more especially for their gallantry in the action of the 9th instant; and while speaking of them I must not fail to mention the name of Colonel Busey, Seventy-sixth Illinois Volunteers; Lieutenant-Colonel Perry, Sixty-ninth Indian, and Lieutenant-Colonel Sears, Twenty-fourth Indiana, for the handsome manner in which they led their men in the assault, and who with their commands so gallantly worked that day. Captain Fred. T. Lewis, Ninety-seventh Illinois, acting assistant adjutant-general, and Lieutenant J. H. McCormick, Twenty-fourth Indiana, aide-de-camp, of my staff, were conspicuous for the gallant performance of their duties on that occasion and for the prompt execution and transmission of orders to
*Awarded a Medal of Honor.