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ranks, rendering it almost impossible, at times, deployed and personally led his troops, aided by to distinguish the enemy in the dense clouds of the gallant Mower, who has reaped many subsmoke. All of a sudden our whole front seemed stantial victories, we should have to record the to gather renewed strength, and they swept the extinction of the Nineteenth army corps and the rebels before them like chaff, following them up Department of the Gulf. closely.

T'his battle of Pleasant Hill is probably the The enemy made another desperate stand, first time on record where the rebels have maniwhen Colonel Shaw, commanding the Third fested any desire to meet our soldiers in an openbrigade, First division, Sixteenth corps, gave the field fight, and particularly where they have been order to charge bayonets, and the crisis was soon the attacking party. This rebel phenomenon is over, the rebels being unable to stand the pres- easily explained. After the easy victory of Frisure of “Yankee" steel. In the very thickest day, Kirby Smith supposed it would not be a of the fight, on our left and centre, rode the very difficult matter to completely exterminate patriarchal-looking, warrior, Colonel Andrew the balance of the little army, against whose Jackson Smith, whose troops received an in- front he hurled his overwhelmingly superior creased inspiration of heroism by his presence. numbers. Deluded with this belief, he at once Wherever he rode, cheer after cheer greeted him, sent to Shreveport for the balance of his forces, for there is an irresistible attraction around this principally Missouri and Arkansas troops, fresh officer, who has exhibited the real Jacksonian from their camps. energy. Not less conspicuous were Major-Gen- Upon their arrival at our front, Kirby Smith eral Banks and staff, General Joseph A. Mower, and Dick Taylor both harangued the new levies, of the First division, Sixteenth army corps, Gen- exhorting them to strike together a steady blow, eral Franklin and staff, and General Emory and and the Yankees” would surely be driven from staff.

the soil of Louisiana. They boasted with great As the dusk of evening became more and more bombast upon the capture of eighteen pieces of intense, and the last glimmering streaks of day artillery from us, and nearly two hundred army were rapidly fading away, the enemy struggled wagons filled with Government stores, including merely for the possession of the battle-field, and considerable whiskey, which also fell into their a tremendous roar of musketry burst forth from hands. Pointing with exultation to the spoils their staggering lines, which was responded to and trophies which his men had secured, he by two or three terrific volleys from our side, and filled the fresh troops with a degree of hopeful then came that dead, quiet calm, broken only buoyancy, which afterward proved fatal; for by the moaning of our men's voices and the while flushed with success, they were entirely groans of the dying. The enemy retreated rap- ignorant of the arrival of General A. J. Smith's idly that night, General A. J. Mower, of the Six- fresh troops; and this explains the recklessness teenth army corps, having pushed out some four and apparent indifference with which they asmiles from Pleasant Hill, without being able to sailed us, filing in their men to the very jaws of overtake the enemy.

death. Where so much gallantry was displayed, it This information I derived from wounded priswould be invidious for me to particularize; but oners, nearly all of whom corroborate the statethe conduct of Colonel W. T. Shaw, Second ment. They deny that General Pop Price was brigade, Third division, Sixteenth army corps; there, although letters have been found by our Colonel Benedict, Nineteenth army corps, who troops which would seem to indicate that he was fell mortally wounded at the head of his noble on the field during the battle. brigade while cheering them on to the fight; General Banks, while encouraging his troops Lieutenant-Colonel James Newbold, of the Four- in the midst of a galling fire, had his coat pierced teenth Iowa, Sixteenth army corps; Colonel Mix, with a bullet. General Franklin manoeuvred of the New-York cavalry, Nineteenth army his troops with great skill, and while leading his corps, both of whom sacrificed their lives in de- men on Friday, he bad two tine horses shot from fence of their country's honor; Colonel Lynch, under him, while a Minié ball grazed his boot. Second brigade, Sixteenth army corps; Colonel The First division of the Nineteenth army Moore, First brigade, First division, Sixteenth corps did nobly on Friday, coming up to the army corps ; Colonel Hill, brigade, First di- rescue of the remnant of the shattered Thirteenth vision, Sixteenth army corps, all deserve the army corps, with deafening cheers. An officer on highest praise. In fact, though the results were General Ransom's staff was riding rapidly in front very unfavorable to our cause, yet in the battle of our lines with an important order, when a solid of Pleasant Hill we can rest assured the stain of shot struck his horse's head, severing it from his cowardice cannot blot the record of that bloody body in much less time than it takes to tell it. battle.

Battery L, Fifth regulars, was captured by the All of the troops seemed inspired with a degree rebels, and retaken a few minutes after by our of courage which nothing but the total annihila- men. tion of our men could subdue or extinguish. It Colonel Lynch performed a gallant little exis impossible to state who was in chief command ploit, which came near costing him his life. on Saturday, Generals Banks and Franklin being Gathering up a small squad of men after the both upon the field; but had it not been for the battle was nearly over, he pushed on two miles masterly manner in which General A. J. Smith, from our lines, and captured three caissons filled



with ammunition. While attempting to jump posing to view a noble forehead, which was his horse over a deep ditch, a bullet whistled past bathed with the heavy dew of Saturday night. his ear, and turning to see whence it proceeded, I dismounted for a moment, hoping to be able to he saw a wounded rebel just preparing to fire find some trace of the hero's name, but the again froin the ditch where he lay stretched in a chivalry had stripped his body of every article pool of blood. Before the relentless rebel had of value. The fatal ball had pierced his heart. time to accomplish his base purpose, the Colonel Not twenty feet from this dreary picture lay drew his revolver, and that insatiate rebel passed prostrate the mutilated body of an old man, apto the dominions of Jeff Davis & Co. very rap- parently forty-five years of age. His cap lay by idly.

the side of his head in a pool of blood, while his Colonel W. T. Shaw, commanding the Second long flowing gray beard was dyed with his blood. brigade, Third division, Sixteenth army corps, A shell had fearfully lacerated his right leg, while deserves great credit for the able manner in his belt was pierced in two places, both balls which he suppresses rebelcavalry charges. entering the abdominal region. In front of the Colonel Sweitzer, of the Texas cavalry, un- long belt of woods which skirted the open field, dertook to break Colonel Shaw's lines by a and from which the rebels emerged so boldly, charge. Orders were given to

your was a deep ditch, and at this point the slaughter fire, boys, until he gets within thirty yards, and among the rebels was terrific. In many places then give it to him.' As the cavalry dashed on the enemy's dead were piled up in groups, interat a gallop, each infantryman had selected his mixed with our dead. I saw two or three of victim, and waiting till the three or four hundred our men whose bodies had been brutally violated were within about forty yards, the Fourteenth by the exasperated foe, too horrible for mention. Iowa emptied nearly every saddle as quickly as It is universally supposed, and I am not prethough the order had been given to dismount. pared to deny its correctness, that we inflicted a

Out of this rebel cavalry regiment not more heavier loss of life upon the enemy on Saturday. than ten men escaped, and the whole movement Admitting that the undiminished valor of our was done with that terrible death alacrity which troops forced the enemy to retreat, leaving us in the science of war teaches, and the awful reality full possession of the battle-field, did we careof which the eye alone can describe to the soul. fully bury our dead, and gather up the thousands One of the wretches was badly wounded, and of rifles that were thrown upon the field ? No; falling from his horse, his feet caught in the we stole off stealthily before daylight Sunday stirrup, frighting the horse, which dashed off at a morning, General A. J. Smith's forces covering fearful speed, dragging the unfortunate rebel af- our retreat, with five hundred cavalry as a rearter him until his head was entirely severed from guard, under the command of Colonel Lucas. his body, his brains being dashed upon the The entire army reached Grand Ecore, on Red ground.

River, on Monday and Tuesday, April eleventh On Sunday morning, at daybreak, I took occa- and twelfth. sion to visit the scene of Saturday's bloody con- Our loss will probably not exceed three thouflict, and a more ghastly spectacle I have not sand five hundred in killed, wounded, and misswitnessed. Over the field and upon the Shreve-ing, although some officers assert it will reach port road were scattered dead horses, broken four thousand. I append herewith a partial list muskets, and cartridge-boxes stained with blood, of casualties as collected by your correspondents while all around, as far as the eye could reach, with the Red River expedition. Quite a number were mingled the inanimate forms of patriot and of our wounded were left in houses at Pleasant traitor, side by side. Here were a great many Hill, in charge of two of our surgeons. rebels badly wounded, unable to move, dying for want of water, and not a drop within two BRIGADE REPORT OF COLONEL LYNCH. miles, and no one to get it for them.

HEADQUARTERS FIRST BRIGADE, THURD DIVISIOX, Their groans and piteous appeals for “Water!

SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS, GRAND Ecore, LA., water! water!" were heart-rending, and sent a

April 13, 1861, shudder to the most stony heart. Such horrid Captain J. B. Sample, A. A.G. First and Third expressions as dwelt upon each deathlike coun- Division, Sixt onth Army Corps : tenance can neither be described nor imagined. CAPTAIN: 1 have the honor to report the fol. Here was a brave loyal sergeant, his trusty rifle lowing relative to the part taken by my brigade grasped in his hand, while each eyeball glared in the battle of Pleasant Hill, La., on the ninth from its glazed socket with fierce excitement. day of April, 1864. The dead were everywhere, and in every possi- In accordance with orders received, we marched ble position which could render the scene more from Grand Ecore, La., on the morning of the appalling

seventh. After proceeding some fifteen miles on I saw one sweet face, that of a young patriot, the Shreveport road, we went into camp for the and upon his icy features there lingered a hea- night. On the morning of the eighth we were venly smile, speaking of calmness and resigna- detained somewhat in waiting for the Second and tion. The youth was probably not more than Third brigades to pass. We started at eight nineteen, with a full blue eye beaming, even in o'clock A.m., and arrived near Pleasant Ilill at death, with meekness. The morning wind listed dark, having marched twenty-one miles that day. his auburn locks from off his marble face, ex- , During the afternoon heavy cannonading was

heard in our front, denoting an engagement be- most fierce; first success seemed to favor one, tween our advance (the Thirteenth and Nineteenth and then the other. Twice were our boys driven corps) and the enemy. At two o'clock A.M., of back between the guns of the abandoned battery the ninth, we were in line of battle awaiting the L, First United States artillery, and as often did approach of the enemy, who had defeated the they rally and repulse the enemy. At last the Thirteenth and Nineteenth corps. We remained enemy were driven into the woods in confusion, on our arms until ten A.M., when we moved for- and three pieces of artillery captured by the Fifward about one mile, and formed in the follow- ty-eighth Illinois. During the fight a portion of ing order in the east centre of the field, namely, the Fifty-eighth was aided by other troops of our the Eighty-ninth Indiana infantry in front, the corps and army. At the time of the driving Ninth Indiana battery in its rear, and the Fifty- back of the Eastern brigade, the Eighty-ninth eighth and One Hundred and Nineteenth Illinois Indiana was advanced, delivering volley after volinfantry in rear of the battery. We remained in ley. They continued to move forward, inclining this position till twelve M., when the Fifty-eighth toward the right. Reaching the woods, they and One Hundred and Nineteenth Illinois in- drove the rebels in confusion before them into fantry were moved by the left flank to a point the very depths thereof. In the advance of the about three hundred yards to the left, and formed Eighty-ninth regiment, they drove away a rebel on a ridge in the woods facing outward. From brigade which had driven in disorder through this point the Fifty-eighth Illinois was moved the Ninth Indiana battery an entire Maine regiabout half a mile to the front and left of the ment and portion of a New-York regiment. The original position. Here this regiment was halted, Eighty-ninth certainly saved the Ninth battery and a breastwork of fallen timber thrown up, from capture. During the fight here many prisbehind which the men took shelter. After these oners were captured by this regiment, among arrangements were made,skirmishers were thrown them several officers. The conduct of the out from this regiment and the One Hundred officers and men of the Eighty-ninth was most and Nineteenth Illinois. The Eighty-ninth In- gallant; nobly did they stand up to their work. diana was then moved a short distance to the At the time of the attack by the Fifty-eighth Illeft to support the Third Indiana battery on the linois on the enemy's flank, the One Hundred right, and the First Vermont battery on the left. and Nineteenth Illinois changed front obliquely The Ninth Indiana battery was placed in position to the rear, and advanced on the enemy, keeping on the right of the Third Indiana battery and the left of the field. They drove before them a about two hundred yards therefrom, there be- Texas regiment, the colors of which they caping a New-York regiment between. In this tured. This regiment, although less exposed position we remained till four P.M., when mus- than either the Eighty-ninth Indiana or Fiftyketry in our front admonished us that the fight eighth Illinois, still did the work assigned to had begun. Soon the enemy advanced from the them with the greatest promptitude and courage. woods, driving before them a brigade of Eastern After driving the enemny far into the woods, the troops which had occupied a position in the ra- Eighty-ninth Indiana was withdrawn to the edge vine or ditch on the opposite side of the field. of the field, and formed into a new line, where it Pursuing this brigade, and flushed with victory, remained until it was joined by the other regithe rebels continued to advance with yells, that ments of the brigade, at about half-past six P. M. carried terror to many a stout heart. Still press- The Fifty-eighth Illinois, after entering the woods, ing on, they drove our troops back, and even became separated, a portion following the colors had possession of one of our batteries, (battery and the remainder accompanying myself

. After L, First United States artillery,) when, on a coming into the woods, I found the men in the sudden, the Fifty-eighth Illinois infantry, which greatest confusion ; but knowing that our situahad been advanced to the left and front, appeared tion was most precarious, I ordered all to push in the edge of the woods, on the enemy's right forward. With a rush, the men obeyed, the flank. The order was given to charge, and with color-bearers to the front. Closely we pressed unearthly yells and with lightning-like rapidity the rebels, driving them to the left through the they were on the enemy. Fierce was the strug- woods, and up the road for a distance of over gle, and nobly did the brave Fifty-eighth do their three miles. Never did a man flinch, though the work, driving the before victorious enemy before enemy outnumbered us six to one-the number them. They halted not until they drove the of colors with us probably deceiving them as to rebels into the ditch in front. Here we captured our real strength. In the pursuit, so close were about four hundred prisoners, whom I sent to we to the rebels that our men seized them by the rear in charge of an officer, with instructions the collars, bayoneting some and capturing othto report them to Brigadier-General Mower, but ers while in the very act of firing their pieces. who delivered them to a staff-officer belonging, Six caissons and a large number of very fine I have since understood, to the Nineteenth ar- horses were taken by us during this charge. my corps. The Fifty-eighth Illinois claim to Having pursued the enemy three miles, I found have captured more prisoners than they have him forming beyond an open field in considerable men in the regiment. Certain it is that their force. Hastily forming my broken column, I furious attack completely turned the flank of found myself opposed to about three thousand the enemy, and decided in a great measure the rebeis, while my force did not exceed as many fate of the day. At this point the battle was hundred. I directed the men to open fire, which

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was done at once, causing the rebels to break in lowing report of the Eighty-third regiment O.V.I., confusion. Being so far from any support, I under my command, from the time it left Natchifound it necessary to rejoin our main force, and toches until the close of the battle of Sabine at once ordered a return, in which we were un- | Cross-Roads : molested. I can only account for the unprece- My regiment, together with the balance of the dented success of my little corps by the com- Fourth division, by order of Colonel W. J. Lanplete defeat of the rebels sustained on the open drum, commanding, left Natchitoches at halffield, and in the woods near the field. It being past six o'clock A.M., on Wednesday, the sixth quite dark, and being burdened with our wound- instant, marched some fifteen miles on the Pleased, which we brought with us, I was compelled ant Hills road, and encamped for the night. to leave the caissons, though I at the time sup- On the morning of the seventh, the division posed we were to bring them off in the morning. moved soon after six o'clock, and reached Pleas

Having moved back to the open field, we joined ant Hills at half-past one o'clock, a march of the other regiments of the brigade, and after nineteen miles, but by reason of a heavy rain the obtaining a supply of ammunition, moved out teams did not arrive until seven o'clock in the with the brigade about a mile upon the road over evening. which we had driven the rebels, there formed Friday, eighth instant, the division was orline of battle, and remained during the night. dered to march at half past five o'clock, but my At this time the Fifty-eighth Illinois regiment regiment was detailed as a guard for the ammuwas detached, and moved to their original po- nition train, and did not leave till more than an sition behind their fortifications, upon the left of hour later. At noon the rear of the train had the open field.

not advanced more than six or seven miles, on The Ninth Indiana battery at the beginning of account of the heavy skirmishing in front, when the engagement, although in the finest position Captain Dickey, Assistant Adjutant-General, on the field, was completely masked by battery brought an order from General Ransom for me L, First United States artillery, consequently to assemble my regiment, which was disposed as could not be used till late in the engagement, at guard through the train, and move to the front which time it made some very fine shots, dis- as fast as possible to support my division. I mounting one of the enemy's guns, and totally si- immediately started with the rear-guard, assemlencing the remaining guns of the battery. bled the regiment as I passed train, and

The officers and men of the First brigade have moved as rapidly as possible past troops and fully indicated their great superiority over the through the train, which was also moving forrebel hosts to which they were opposed in the ward to the front, a distance of eight or ten battle of Pleasant Hill. Feeling satisfied that if miles, and then moved to the right of the road my brigade had been together, greater would diagonally toward the woods, and formed in line have been the results, I still feel a pride in know- of battle at a point designated by Major Lieber ing that to the First brigade, Third division, Sis- of General Banks's staff. General Ransom then teenth army corps, belongs the credit of giving ordered bayonets to be fixed, and conducted the the enemy the first check, of turning his flank, regiment forward into the woods to support a of driving him further, and of holding longer battery, and ordered a company thrown out to the grounds captured, than any troops on the protect our right flank. Soon after, by order of field.

Colonel Vance, an officer and twenty-five men Captain George R. Brown, of the Ninth In- were advanced as skirmishers. diana battery, has proved himself a capable, cool, It was about three o'clock when an order was and gallant officer. Captain John Tobin, com- received from General Ransom to pile up the pany K, Fifty-eighth Illinois, fell, shot through knapsacks, advance through the woods and take the heart, while gallantly leading his men in the a position at the edge of the field on the right charge. Captain F. S. Zeck, company C, Eighty- of the Ninety-sixth Ohio, which was already in ninth Indiana, fell severely wounded in both feet, position. The enemy was advancing through while bravely leading his men across the field. the field in line of battle, and the regiment In this connection, I would respectfully state opened fire the moment it had gained the posithat quite a number of the One Hundred and tion designated, which was on the right of the Seventy-eighth New-York, with their colors, were line of battle. The enemy outflanked our line, with me on the three-mile charge through the and was closing in upon the right, when Captain woods, and acquitted themselves with honor. delivered to me an order from General Ran. Again thanking the brave officers and men whom som to move the regiment by the left flank from I have the honor to command, I am, Captain, its position on the right to the support of the very respectfully, your obedient servant, centre, which was heavily pressed. I explained


to him that we were outflanked upon the right,

Colonel Commanding. and that it was necessary for me to change the LIEUTENANT-COLONEL BALDWIN'S REPORT.

front of my regiment diagonally to the line of HEADQUARTERS EIGHTY-THIRD REGIMENT 0. V. I,

battle, and to hold my position to protect the GRAND ECORE, LA., April 12, 1864.

right flank. But he assured me that the last orCaptain Oscar Mohr, A. A. General, Detachment der was peremptory, and must be obeyed. I Thirteenth A. C.:

therefore iminediately moved my regiment by CAPtain: I have the honor to submit the fol- I the left flank, in good order, to the position to

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which I was guided by Captain In the PRIVATE LETTER FROM THE EIGHTY-THIRD OHIO. mean time the intervening line of troops had

HEADQUARTERS EIGHTY-THIRD REGIMENT 0. V. I., been withdrawn, and the troops I was ordered

GRAND ECORE, LA., April 17, 1864. 5 to support had fallen back to the crest of the A boat is to leave in a short time, and I will hill, to which position, by order of General Rano write until the last moment. I have been writsom, the regiment also fell back, having lost dur- ing to the friends of killed and wounded. Caping the movement several men; also Captain C. tain Waldo is wounded in the left arm and left A. Burns, who was instantly killed by a musket- hip. I have written to his father. He is at shot in the head. At this point, Colonel Brown, Mansfield, in the enemy's hospital, doing well. as ranking officer after the fall of Colonel Vance, The battle was shockingly managed. It was took command of the brigade; and General no doubt a surprise upon the General commandCameron, in place of General Ransom, who fell ing. He endeavored to charge the enemy with a severely wounded just as the regiment reached baggage-train, but it didn't work. It was some the top of the ridge, took command of the de- eighteen miles from Pleasant Hills, where we entachment of the Thirteenth corps. After holding camped the night before, that a portion of our dithe position for some time, the regiment, together vision, after skirmishing all day, (our brigade with the whole line, was forced to fall back over marched out at three o'clock A.M.,) were brought the crest of the ridge, where it was supplied with to a stand by the enemy. The Eighty-third, ammunition. My regiment and the Ninety-sixth some ten miles back, guarding an ammunitionOhio, under the immediate command of Colonel train, was sent for and arrived at a rapid march, Brown, commanding the brigade, then changed partly upon the double-quick, at about two front perpendicular to the line of battle, and o'clock, and after two or three changes of posimoved out about three hundred yards to the tion became hotly engaged at three o'clock. Our right of the right flank, to oppose a flank move-line was stretched just as long as possible. The ment of the enemy, and threw forward skirmish-enemy outflanked us on both flanks, and massed ers, who had advanced but a few yards when in front. When we engaged the enemy there they were engaged with the enemy, who were were nine thousand, perhaps, of our division enconcealed by the dense undergrowth. Nearly gaged; not a man in reserve. The Third divi. the same time the enemy, who had been lying sion came up and went in as it arrived; but we concealed in line of battle, arose and opened fire were opposed by some twenty thousand troops, upon our line, the left flank of which was not according to the best information we can get, more than fifty yards distant. The line whose and they were reënforced by five thousand durright we had advanced to protect in the mean ing the engagement. Our little force fought the time had fallen back, and the two regiments ex- enemy in a regular pitched battle from three to posed to the fire of the enemy in front, in rear, six o'clock, after skirmishing all day, under and on the left, to avoid being surrounded, fell every disadvantage. There was but one road, back, with considerable loss, including Captain leading into an open field and passable wood. Waldo, missing, and Captain Cummins, wound. This wood and field were surrounded by ravines ed in the arm and side. From the fact that the and tangled swamp, so that there was no ingress regiment was nearly surrounded, I hope that or egress but by the one road, and that road was many of the missing will prove to be uninjured. choked up by wagons. There is a great deal of After falling back, a line was immediately formed, bitter feeling against our leaders. It is very but was soon broken by retreating cavalry. The much like “Grand Coteau,” where one brigade same attempt was repeated, but with little suc- of our corps was left to be gobbled up by the cess, until a portion of the wagon-train, which enemy. Generals Banks and Franklin did not choked up the only road not occupied by the believe that there was any force but a few skirenemy, and the line of the Nineteenth corps, mishers in our front, and by their incredulity which had formed in line of battle about one lost the day. and a half miles from where my regiment first The Nineteenth corps came up to within one engaged the enemy, were passed. This was and a half miles of the field, and formed a line about six o'clock. In rear of the Nineteenth in a favorable place. They that night checked corps a line was formed of men from my own the enemy, but we all fell back to Pleasant Hills, and other regiments, and moved to the left and eighteen miles, where we met General A. J. remained in position until about eight o'clock, Smith. Upon meeting the fragment of the old when the regiment assembled at division head- Tenth, (now the Fourth,) he wept. He told quarters, and at ten o'clock P.M., by order of General Banks, I am informed, that he had sacGeneral Cameron, moved toward Pleasant Hills. rificed the best fighting division in the army.

The loss of the regiment in killed, wounded, The enemy followed us up and got a severe punand missing is three officers and twenty-six men. ishing at the hands of General Smith. General To the coolness and fearlessness of the officers, Banks said to him : "General Smith, you have and the bravery and strict execution of orders saved my army.” Smith's reply was characterof the men, is due the comparatively small loss istic—"By God! I know it, sir.” When told sustained by the regiment.

that reënforcements were coming, Smith said he I have the honor to be, Captain, your obedi- was very sorry. Before being asked the reason, ent servant,

W. H. Baldwin, he said: “ The fellow has more men now than he Lieutenant-Colonel Commanding. I knows how to use."

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