War of the Rebellion: Serial 103 Page 0272 KY., S. W. VA., TENN., N. & C. GA., MISS., ALA., & W. FLA.

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and capturing the entire line of forts and works from in front of the right of my trenches to near Fort Alexis, capturing the entire picket-line, the guns, and a portion of his garrison and all the mortars on this line, some fifteen or twenty pieces of artillery. Failing to develop the position of the enemy, Fort Alexis being in my front, a strong fort off on my right flank, and believing, as I did, that the enemy must occupy either the one or the other of these positions, and Colonel Geddes failing to come up with his brigade, facing the fort and position on my right, this reformation occupying about thirty minutes of time. When learning that Colonel Ward had moved up to support me with his brigade, I sent and asked him to leave a regiment to watch our rear and left flank from any dash which might be made from Fort Alexis. I then ordered forward my brigade in line in the new direction to the right upon the water battery until my skirmish line reached the water battery and the bay. Soon after reaching this position Colonel Geddes came up with his brigade. Here I heard for the first time (I heard from prisoners captured) that the enemy was escaping to Fort Tracy by boats and narrow foot bridge, which was reported to be about two miles up the bay from my present position. I immediately moved with the Thirty-third Wisconsin and one company of the Seventy-second Illinois for this point, leaving my brigade under command of Colonel Blanden, of the Ninety-fifth Illinois, with orders to move to my support if he should find I had discovered the enemy. On reaching the point off Fort Tracy I found that the enemy had made good his escape to the forts and gun-boats which lay off the point. Finding farther pursuit impossible, I ordered the troops back to quarters, leaving guard over the guns and mortars captured. I think the result of this rapid movement was the captured of the enemy's entire picket-line, and prevented him from destroying his guns, stores, and ammunition. I take great pleasure, captain, in thanking you for the aid you afforded me in making this movement. No man could have behaved with more gallantry than you did on that occasion. During the entire operations before Spanish Fort the officers and soldiers of my command worked day and night with an energy and zeal rarely equaled. My regimental commanders each supported me with unusual energy. Colonel L. Blanden, of the Ninety-fifth Illinois, for the manner in which he pushed his works and handled his men, deserves especial notice. Of my own staff officers-Captain George B. Carter, Thirty-third Wisconsin Volunteers, acting assistant adjutant-general; Captain Charles W. Stark, Thirty-third Wisconsin, acting aide-de-camp,and Captain A. Schellenger, trench officer-I cannot speak in too high terms. Up at all hours superintending the trenches and advancing lines, snatching an hour's sleep now and then at the all times displaying the true energy and perseverance of the determined and unconquerable soldier.

I hereto append the list of casualties of the brigade, * all of which is respectfully submitted.


Colonel, Commanding First Brigadier, Third Div., 16th Army Corps.

Captain B. WILSON,

Asst. Adjt. General, Third Division, Sixteenth Army Corps.


*Embodied in table p. 113.