J. W. Vance, 96th Ohio, and Lt.-Col. Webb, 77th Illinois, killed. Repeated attempts to réform our disheartened men, so as to present a fresh barrier to the enemy's victorious advance, proved of no avail. The Press (Philadelphia) had a correspondent watching the fight, who thus reports its melancholy finale:

“The reader will understand that our forces were in an open space—a pine-wood clearing—that our line of advance was one single, narrow road ; and that, having made the attack ourselves, we found the enemy superior, and were compelled to make a defensive fight. There were other troubles. The country was so formed that artillery was almost useless. We could not place a battery without exposing it in a manner that suggested madness; and yet we had the guns, and were compelled to fight them. A further disadvantage was to be found in the long trains that followed the different divisions. The cavalry had the advance; immediately behind, came the baggagewagons, moving in a slow, cumbersome manner, and retarding the movements of the infantry. This made it impossible for us to have our divisions in supporting distance; and, when the time came for that support, it could not be rendered. Gen. Banks perceived this at once; but it was too late to remedy it, and he was compelled to fight the battle in the best manner possible. Ransom's division had been engaged and routed. Cameron's division was in the thickest of the fight. Gen. Franklin had arrived on the field, and a division of his magnificent corps, under Gen. Emory, was pushing along rapidly. Gen. Banks personally directed the fight. Every thing that man could do he did. Occupying a position so exposed that nearly every horse ridden by his staff was wounded, and many killed, he constantly disregarded the entreaties of those around, who begged that he would retire to some less exposed position. Gen. Stone, his chief of staff, with his sad, earnest face, that seemed to wear an unusual expression, was constantly at the front, and by his reckless bravery did much to encourage the men. And so the fight raged. The enemy were pushing a temporary advantage. Our army was merely forming into position to make a sure battle.

“Then came one of those unaccountable events that no genius or courage can control. I find it impossible to describe a scene so sudden and bewildering, although

I was present, partly an actor, partly a l

spectator, and saw plainly every thing that took place. The battle was progressing vigorously. The musketry firing was loud and continuous; and, having recovered from the danger experienced by Ransom's division, we felt secure of the position. I was slowly riding along the edge of a wood, conversing with a friend, who had just ridden up, about the events and prospects of the day. We had drawn into the side of the wood to allow an ammunition wagon to pass; and, although many were observed going to the rear, some on foot and some on horseback, we regarded it as an occurrence familiar to every battle, and it occasioned nothing but a passing remark. “I noticed that most of those thus wildly riding to the rear were negroes, hangers-on, and serving-men ; for, now that we have gone so deeply into this slaveholding country, every non-commissioned officer has a servant, and every servant a mule. These people were the first to show any panic; but their scamper along the road only gave amusement to the soldiers, who pelted them with stones and whipped their flying animals with sticks to increase their speed. Suddenly, there was a rush, a shout, the crashing of trees, the breaking down of rails, the rush and scamper of men. It was as sudden as though a thunder-bolt had fallen among us and set the pines on fire. What caused it, or when it commenced, no one knew. I turned to my companion to inquire the reason of this extraordinary proceeding; but, before he had a chance to reply, we found ourselves swallowed up, as it were, in a hissing, seething, bubbling whirlpool of agitated men. We could not avoid the current; we could not stem it; and, if we hoped to live in that mad company, we must ride with the rest of them. Our line of battle had given way. Gen. ” Banks took off his hat and implored his men to remain; his staff-officers did the same: but it was of no avail. Then the General drew his saber and endeavored to rally his men; but they would not listen. Behind

him, the Rebels were shouting and advanc

ing. Their musket-balls filled the air with that strange, file-rasping sound that war has made familiar to our fighting men. The teams were abandoned by the drivers, the traces cut, and the animals ridden off by the frightened men. Bareheaded riders rode with agony in their faces; and, for at least ten minutes, it seemed as if we were going to destruction together. It was my fortune to see the first battle of Bull Run, and to be among those who made that celebrated midnight retreat toward Washington. The retreat of the 4th division was as much a rout as that of the first Federal



army, with the exception that fewer men were engaged, and our men fought here with a valor that was not shown on that serious, sad, mock-heroic day in July.””

Gen. Emory, advancing behind Franklin, had been early advised that matters were dubious at the front, and directed to take a position wherein to stop the mischief. Advancing four miles farther, he halted his division at PLEASANT GROVE, three miles behind Sabine Crossroads, and disposed it for the emergency. It held the western edge of a wood, with an open field in front, sloping toward Mansfield; and here Gen. Dwight formed his (1st) brigade across the road, with the 3d, Col. Lewis Benedict,” on his left;

the 2d, Gen. McMillen, in reserve; the 161st N. York, Lt.-Col. Kinsey, being thrown out in advance as skirmishers; Lee's and Franklin's flying columns being allowed to pass through and form (if they would) behind the living rampart thus erected. Hardly was Emory’s formation completed when the flushed Rebels came headlong on, driving in our skirmishers pell-mell, and charging up the slope as though there were only the routed fugitives from the Cross-roads before them. Their left overlapping our right, Gen. McMil. len was thrown forward on that wing, and our fire reserved until they were close upon our line; when a deadly volley swept them down

* A grumbling private of the 83d Ohio thus
sums up his view of this affair:
“The battle was shockingly managed. It
was, no doubt, a surprise on the General com-
manding. IIe endeavored to charge the enemy
with a baggage-train, but it did n't work. * * *
Gens. Danks and Franklin did n’t believe there
was any force in our front but a few skirmish-
ers, and, by their incredulity, lost the day.”
A letter to The Missouri Republican has the
“About 3 P. M., when within two miles of
Mansfield, the advance, consisting of cavalry,
artillery, and the 4th division, 13th army corps,
while marching through a dense pine forest,
there being a thick undergrowth of pines on
either side of the road, were attacked by the Re-
bels in great force, on both flanks and in front.
The engagement soon became general: the Re-
bels suddenly opening with artillery and mus-
ketry, charging our surprised and panic-stricken
columns with terrific yells, evincing a daring
and determination worthy of a better cause.
Gen. Banks and Gen. Franklin hurried to the
front, and were in the thickest of the fight.
The artillery was speedily put in position at the
extreme front, and, for a while, did excellent
service. Finding the front rather too dangerous
for Major-Generals, Banks and Franklin return-
ed to the rear of the wagon-train, just in time to
save themselves from capture, as the Rebels
pressed upon both sides of our army with
crushing effect. A ball passed through Gen.
Banks's hat. Every thing was soon in the
wildest confusion; the wagon-train, being in the
rear and in the narrow road, attempted to turn
round to fall back, and completely blocked up
the way, cutting off the advance both from a
way of retreat and from réenforcements. The
Rebels had formed in the shape of an isosceles

triangle, leaving the base open, and at the apex
planting their artillery. Our advance marched
directly into the triangle, having the two wings
of the Rebel forces on either side of them.
These wings were speedily connected, compel-
ling our forces to retreat or surrender. The hat-
teries above mentioned, consisting of 20 pieces
in all, were now captured, together with nearly
all their officers and men. The Chicago Mercan-
tile battery was captured entire, and I am in-
formed that all her officers and men sell into the
hands of the enemy. The 4th division, 13th
corps, 2,800 men, under Gen. Ransom, and Gen.
Lee's cavalry, about 3,000 strong, and the bat-
teries above mentioned, were the forces in ad-
vance of the wagon-train. These forces fought
desperately for a while, but gave way to the
superior numbers of the Rebels, and retreated
in great precipitation. The scene of this retreat
beggars all description. Gen. Franklin said of
it, that ‘Bull Run was not a circumstance in
comparison.’ Gen. Ransom was wounded in
the knee, but rode off the field before he was
compelled, by loss of blood, to dismount. Capt.
I)ickey, of Gen. Ransom's staff, was shot through
the head and killed instantly. IIis body
was left on the field. The position of the wag-
on-train in the narrow road was the great blun-
der of the affair. The rear was completely
blocked up, rendering the retreat very difficult,
and, in fact, almost impossible. Cavalry horses
were dashing at full speed through the roads,
endangering infantry and other pedestrians more
than Rebel musketry: the retreat having be-
come so precipitate that all attempts to make a
stand, for a while, seemed impossible.
“The immense baggage and supply train of
Gen. Lee's cavalry, consisting of 269 wagons,
nearly all fell into the hands of the enemy, to-
gether with the mules attached thereto.”

*Of Albany, N. Y.

like grass; Gen. Mouton being among the killed. But, though

somewhat astonished, they were not dismayed; their superiority in numbers more than counterbalancing our advantage of position. For an hour and a half, the fighting continued at close quarters, till darkness arrested it—all the enemy's impetuous charges having been repelled by the steady valor of our men; their losses being at least double ours. Emory's division had saved our army, and probably our fleet also.” Smith's veterans were still behind. To remain on the ground watered with the blood of both armies was to fight again at daylight with half our force against every fighting Tebel between Shreveport and the Mississippi. To retreat would enable the worsted foe to claim a second victory. Banks preferred the substance to the shadow, and fell back unmolested during the night 15 miles, to PLEAs. ANT IIILL: Gen. Emory covering the

retreat, after burying his dead and caring for his wounded, and only reaching our new position at 8% A. M.” Thus far, we had fought against fearful odds—odds that need not, therefore, should not, have been encountered. At Pleasant Hill, the case was somewhat altered. Gen. Smith had arrived and halted here at night, as had Col. Dickey's Black brigade; swelling Banks's forces to fully 15,000 men. But for yesterday's disasters, it might have been nearly 20,000. Our line of battle was formed with Franklin's three brigades in front, supported by Smith's, whereof the 2d, composed of the 14th, 27th, and 32d Iowa, and the 24th Missouri, under Col. Wm. T. Shaw, 14th Iowa, were formed directly across the main road to Shreveport, whereon the Rebels must advance, along the thinly wooded brow of a slight acclivity, half a mile west of the gentle eminence and petty village of Pleasant IIill; though the bulk of our army was formed, and most of the

* The Chicago Tribune's correspondent says:

“About a half a mile from the field, the 3d division, 13th corps, under Gen. Cameron, came up and formed in line of battle; and here two guns of the Mercantile battery were put in position and opened with good effect upon the enemy. For a short time, it seemed as if a successful rally would be made at this point; but the effort was in vain. The entire strength of the 3d division on the field was only 1,600 men, and, after a short and courageous resistance, the line gave way. A check, however, had been given to the panic, and many of the troops formed into squads and continued the retreatin better order. Efficient aid was also rendered by Col. Robinson, commanding a cavalry brigade detailed to guard the trains, who, hearing the rapidly approaching firing, hastened with a large portion of his command to the front, and, wheeling into line in perfect order, delivered a most destructive volley into the Rebels, who were swarming in the road, and then fell back in good order. For full a mile from the place where Cameron's division had met us, the retreat was continued; the Rebels following closely upon our heels, and keeping up a continuous fire, when, all at once, as

we emerged into a more open piece of woods, we
came upon Emory's division, of the 19th corps,
forming in magnificent order in line of battle
across the road.
“Opening their ranks to permit the retreating
forces to pass through, each regiment of this
fine division, closing up on the double-quick,
quietly awaited the approach of the Rebels;
and, within less than five minutes, on they came,
screaming and firing as they advanced, but still
in good order and with closed ranks. All at
once, from that firm line of gallant soldiers that
now stood so bravely between us and our pur-
suing foes, there came forth a course of rever-
berating thunders that rolled from flank to flank
in one continuous peal, sending a storm of lead-
en hail into the Rebel ranks that swept them
back in dismay, and left the ground covered
with their killed and wounded. In vain the Re-
bels strove to rally against this terrific fire. At
every effort, they were repulsed; and, after a
short contest, they fell back, evidently most ter;
ribly punished. It was now quite dark, and
each party bivouacked on the field.”

* April 9.

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fighting took place, on the right of the road: our left being refused, with strong reserves posted upon and around Pleasant IIill, to be used as circumstances should dictate. The Tebels had followed our retreating column from Pleasant Grove, but not sharply; and they, from about 11 A. M., cautiously skirmished and felt of our lines, to find a weak point, while their forces were coming up and getting into position, till about 4 P. M., before making a serious attack. Meantime, Banks had dispatched his trains and heavy artillery, guarded by most of our cavalry, with the Black troops and the remains of Ransom's pulverized division, on the road to Grand Ecore; thus weakening our force at the front, in the belief that they would not attack till the morrow. Our remaining brigade of cavalry, Col. O. P. Gooding, had been sent out to reconnoiter a mile or two on the road to Shreveport, and had been roughly handled. But now, a Rebel battery opened, and their infantry advanced; when, their intention of turning our right becoming manifest, Emory's 3d brigade, Col. Benedict, moved to the support of his 1st on that flank, and Shaw's brigade of Smith's corps aforesaid moved forward and took its position in our front; so that, when the enemy charged in earnest, the brunt of the fight fell on this gallant bri

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gade. It could hardly have found

one more able or willing to meet

it.” At 4 P. M., the Rebel skirmish-fire had seemed suddenly to increase and become general; but it soon died away almost wholly, as if the courage to attack had failed. But a few minutes elapsed, however, till our skirmishers were driven in by two charging columns, advancing obliquely against our left center, and striking heavily Emory's 3d brigade, Col. Lewis Benedict, which, after fighting desperately, gave way, and was slowly pushed back on our reserves: but not till Col. Benedict had been wounded. Emory's 1st and 2d brigades were soon enveloped on three sides in overwhelming force and crowded back; the enemy now passing our right and center in eager pursuit, and pressing on nearly to Gen. Smith's position in reserve; when, after an exchange of several volleys, he was charged in turn by Smith's Western veterans, led by Gen. Mower, and by Emory’s division, now formed on their right, and fairly routed ; part of the foe being driven two miles: the 49th Illinois, Maj. Morgan, rushing upon one of their batteries, taking two of its guns, and 100 prisoners. The 58th Illinois, brigaded with the 89th Indiana and 119th Illinois, striking the enemy in flank, rötook one of our lost batteries,

and captured 400 prisoners, with 6 caissons and their horses.” Gen. M. M. Parsons, of Mo., was among the Tebel killed. The fall of the brave Col. Benedict—wounded a second time, and now mortally, as he charged at the head of his brigade, with a shout of triumph on his lips—was part of the cost of this undeniable victory. That the battle of Pleasant Hill was bravely fought against odds in numbers and dearly won by our soldiers, is not fairly disputable; though the fact that Gen. Banks decided to follow, before morning, that considerable portion of his army which, before it commenced, he had started, guarding his trains, on the road to Grand Ecore, has thrown some haze over the result. But Pollard—who always claims a Rebel victory where it is possible to do so —makes no victory out of this; while Dick Taylor—who addresses the Rebel army as “Major-General com

* A newspaper correspondent on the field writes:

“Col. W. T. Shaw, commanding the 2d brigade, 3d division, 16th corps, deserves great credit for the able manner in which he suppresses Rebel cavalry charges. Col. Sweitzer of the Texas cavalry, undertook to break Col. Shaw's lines by a charge. Orders were given to ‘Reserve your fire, boys, until he gets within thirty yards, and then give it to him!” As the cavalry dashed on at a gallop, each infan

tryman had selected his viction, and, waiting till the three or four hundred were within about forty yards, the 14th Iowa emptied nearly every saddle as quickly as though the order had been given to dismount.

“Out of this Rebel cavalry regiment, not more than ten men escaped; and the whole movement was done with that terrible deathalacrity which the science of war teaches, and the awful reality of which the eye alone can describe to the soul.”

manding,” though Kirby Smith was commander of the department, and probably not so far off as Shreveport —after claiming 21 guns, 2,500 pris. oners, 250 wagons, and many stands of colors, as trophies of the preceding day’s triumph, is only able to say this of the battle of Pleasant Hill: “The gallant divisions from Missouri and Arkansas, unfortunately absent on the 8th instant, marched 45 miles in two days, to share the glories of Pleasant Hill. This was emphatically the soldiers' victory. In spite of the strength of the enemy's position, held by fresh troops of the 16th corps, your valor and devotion triumphed over all. Darkness closed one of the hottest fights of the war. The morning of the 10th instant dawned upon a flying foe, with our cavalry in pursuit, capturing prisoners at every step.” No prisoners [we took at least 500]; no guns [we took several]; no colors; no trophies of any kind— nothing but the fact that Banks retreated after the battle, is cited to

give color to a Rebel claim of tri

” The New York IIerald's correspondent says:

“At twenty minutes past 5, the enemy appeared on the plain at the edge of the woods, and the battle commenced: our batteries opening upon him with case-shell as he marched at double-quick across the field to the attack. “Our left, Col. Benedict's brigade, camo into action first ; and our right and center were engaged soon after. The battle now raged fiercely: the air was full of lead and iron, and the roar of musketry and artillery incessant. The carnage on both sides was fearful: the men fighting almost hand to hand, and with great desperation. “Nothing could exceed the determined bravery of our troops; but it was evident Emory's division was sighting the whole Rebel army. Pressed at all points by overwhelming numbers, our line fell back up the hill to the 16th corps, which was concealed just behind the crest. Taylor's battery for a time fell into the hands of the enemy. “General Smith made all preparations to receive the advancing foe; and, as the human tide came rolling up the hill, he looked quietly on until the enemy were almost up to the muzzles of his guns; when a sheet of flame flashed along his lines, and, with the crash of ten thousand thunders, musket-balls, mingled with grape and canister, swept the plain like a besom of de

struction. Hundreds fell dead and dying before that awful fire. “Scarcely had the seething lead left the guns when the word ‘Charge I’ was given, and 7,000 brave men precipitated themselves upon the shattered ranks of the enemy. Emory's division, which had only yielded to superior numbers, and remained unbroken, now rushed forward and joined the 16th corps, driving the Rebels rapidly down the hill to the woods, where they broke and fled in the greatest confusion and dismay. “Col. Benedict, while gallantly leading his brigade in the charge, fell dead, pierced by five balls. “The battle was fought, and the victory won. Our troops followed the Rebels until night put an end to the pursuit. “In the last charge, we récaptured Taylor's battery, which had been lost in the earlier part of the action, and rétook two guns of Nim's battery, which had been lost in the battle of the preceding day. The 10-pounder Parroot gun, which the Rebels captured last fall at Carrion Crow, was also retaken. “Five hundred prisoners, all the dead, and wounded, three battle-standards, and a large number of small arms, fell into our hands. “Our victorious army slept upon the battlefield, which was one of the bloodiest of the war.”

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