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for the rebels, and the horses, caissons, and lim- instant. On the evening of the seventh, we bers were removed.
reached a small village called Pleasant Hill, the The Nineteenth commenced falling back, and road winding through heavy pine timber. While on came the rebels. Upon reaching the woods, at Pleasant Ilill, General Lee, who commands the Nineteenth halted and formed a junction with the cavalry of the expedition, sent word back Smith's troops and the cavalry on each wing: that he had had quite a skirmish with the enemy, and the new line thus made formed two sides of losing thirty-five in killed and wounded, and that a square, with battery L in the angle, and was he had driven them eight miles, where they made invisible to the enemy.
a stand, from which he was unable to dislodge The bait took, and the enemy, seeing the them with his cavalry, and asking for infantry. apparently unprotected battery, rushed forward General Ransom objected, saying: “Remain in en masse to capture it, which they were per- camp here until General Smith comes up, and initted to do, when the Federal forces opened then move on them in force.” It was evident to upon them, subjecting them to a terrible cross- him that the enemy would make a successful fire which mowed them down in immense num- stand, but Generals Banks and Franklin thought bers, literally covering the ground with the slain, differently, and ordered Colonel Landrum, who and threw them into the utmost confusion. coinmanded the Fourth division of the Thirteenth
The lines now closed in and drove them flying army corps, to take the First brigade of his diacross the open field and through the woods vision and start at three in the morning, and asbeyond, killing and capturing a large number, sist General Lee in dislodging the enemy. and also retaking most of the artillery captured At three o'clock, General Lee started, meeting from us on the previous day. It was a most the enemy some eight miles from Pleasant Hill, brilliant victory, and could it have been followed routing him and following him in line of battle up, would doubtless have resulted in the disper- for about eight miles further, skirmishing with sion of the enemy and capture of Shreveport, him the entire distance. Here we lost the gal. but the check we had received necessitated a lant and brave Lieutenant-Colonel Webb, of the retrograde movement to this place as a base of Seventy-seventh Illinois, who was shot dead supplies, it being evident that we could not while leading his men on the enemy's rear-guard. effect a junction with our fleet at or near that Eight miles from Pleasant Hill, and four from place before they gave out. The movement was Mansfield, we came to a large plantation which accordingly made, and we returned in good order, was undulating and surrounded by heavy timber, arriving at noon yesterday. The fleet is expect- but on the further side the belt was narrow and ed to join us here, and in the mean time, we are opened into another plantation of smaller size. receiving reinforcements and making preparations Before we entered the first plantation, the Second for another onward movement.
brigade came up to the assistance of the First, The snake which was spoken of in my last and the Nineteenth regiment was thrown forhas shown a considerable degree of vitality, and ward as skirmishers, and Nim's Massachusetts doubtless, like the tail of the reptile to which battery posted on an eminence, from which they this portion of the Southern Confederacy may be shelled the opposite woods something like a mile likened, will continue to do so until the sun of distant. secession has set in clouds; but I still adhere to The enemy soon left his position, although it the opinion that it would have died of itself, pro. was a very good one.
We advanced the Fourth vided the vital point of the rebellion east of the division to the timber on the opposite side of Mississippi was effectually crushed, and it would the field, and sent back for the Third division, have been much better to have let it had its own General Cameron commanding, and for the way, than to endeavor to kill it in such a bung- Chicago Mercantile battery and First Indiana ling manner. But since the attempt has been battery, both under charge of Captain White, made, it is now better to carry it out, and all Chief of Artillery detachment Thirteenth army are anxious and willing to see it done.
corps. After gaining the opposite side of the The loss of confidence in the military capacity field, we halted, and the fatignied men of the of some of the generals, is counteracted by that | Fourth division lay down to take some rest, as felt in the abilities of General A. J. Smith, both they had marched sixteen miles, one half the time as a counsellor and practical military man. He in line of battle and through the woods. Nim's proved himself the man for the occasion, and his battery was then put in position on the Shrevesuccess on the ninth is the general theme of con- port road. Near the left of the road all was versation. May our next attempt be more for- quiet, skirmishing having ceased, excepting once tunate!
G. W. C. in a while a shot either from rebel or Federal.
Here Generals Franklin and Banks came on the ANOTHER ACCOUNT.
field. General Stone, of Ball's Bluff notoriety, A correspondent of the Lacon Illinois Gazette, (who, by the way, is on General Banks's staff,) belonging to the Seventy-seventh Illinois regi- had been in the front all the morning. General ment, furnished the facts relative to the following Lee was also present with his cavalry. General battles on Red River, in which his regiment was Ransom came up and was ordered to advance his reduced from four hundred to one hundred and line. Before doing so, he told General Banks it fifty-three men :
would bring on an engagement, which he thought We marched from Natchitoches on the sixth lit prudent to avoid at that time, but advised
withdrawing the troops, going into camp, and miles distant, by order of General Franklin. sending for Smith, getting all our troops together, They were sent for, as were the Ninety-sixth and and then allvance on the enemy and whip him Eighty-third Ohio, of the Fourth division, who soundly. But Franklin and Banks overruledd were guarding a train. These two regiments him. Ransom formed his line. While this was soon came up and went at it desperately. They taking place, a lieutenant of the Second Illinois held the enemy in our front, but their flanks adcavalry came to Generals Stone and Lee and re- vanced and they were compelled to give way. ported the enemy massing his force on our right Now comes the most painful part of this sad afand preparing to attack us, which they soon did fair. General Ransom is wounded in the knee with a vengeance; but just before the attack, whilst trying to rally his men, and his assistant General Banks ordered General Ransom to move Adjutant-General killed, shot through the head. his forces to the right. General Ransom then Our artillery retreated to the woods, and to the exclaimed: “That beats us.” Too true! for the one road leading to the rear, and that was blockmove on the right was only a feint; but with ed full of wagons containing ammunition and the practised eye of an old soldier, he detected supplies belonging to the cavalry, (all there by the movement, but obeyed the order of his supe-order of Generals Banks and Franklin,) so the rior officer. Nim's Second Massachusetts bat-batteries had to be abandoned. We lost here tery was at the extreme front, (and here let me seventeen pieces of artillery, but the fight did not say there was no better battery in the United end yet, for the two regiments at the wood soon States service,) supported by the Twenty-second gave way, and on they came. Oh!
I never Wisconsin regiment. On the left of that regiment see the like again. Horses, men, wagons, all was a portion of Lee's cavalry ; on the right of going to the rear-all saying: “Lost ! lost!” At Niin's battery was the Sixty-seventh Indiana ; about half an hour before sundown, and after next, the Seventy-seventh and the One Hundred the day was lost, and a large train captured, up and Thirtieth Illinois; next, the Nineteenth Ken- came the Nineteenth army corps on the doubletucky, Forty-eighth Ohio, and the Third division, quick, having run the entire distance of some which came in just as the enemy and our skir-five miles. They soon formed in the woods and mishers met. We drove their skirmishers back on went at it. The roar of musketry was awful, their main body, which was advancing four deep but they soon checked the enemy, who had, by in three lines, one after the other, at a right this time, been severely punished. Here the shoulder shift arms" in the form of a half-circle hard-fought battle of Mansfield ceased. massed in the centre. Our main lines soon met. Now let me sum up our position: In a dense The Nineteenth Kentucky and the One Hundred wood, in front of a victorious enemy, at least and Thirtieth Illinois were first engaged, then twenty-five thousand strong, we only six thouNim's battery, the Sixty-seventh Indiana, and sand troops to oppose them; many wounded, the Seventy-seventh Ilinois, and then the whole and over four hundred wagons to be moved, a line, including the Chicago Mercantile and the distance of more than nineteen miles, to Pleasant First Indiana batteries. The enemy soon press Hill, by only one road, and that bad, and lined ed back our cavalry, which was on the flanks, with heavy pine forests on each side. Do you and came at double-quick on the infantry. The wonder at our feeling dispirited, knowing that the cavalry giving way exposed the flank of the in- enemy would attack us in the morning? But we fantry, both right and left, but they held their fell back, building huge fires all along the road front manfully until they were compelled to fall to dispel the darkness, and arrived at Pleasant back or be captured. They then fell back, slow- Hill at about four o'clock A.M., on the ninth inly at first, dropping by hundreds on the wayside, stant, where we found General A. J. Smith, with bleeding and exhausted. But what at first was his column, ready to dispute with the enemy for an orderly retreat soon became almost a rout. the final mastery of the field. On the ninth, at Nim's battery worked manfully-the veteran bat- twelve o'clock M., our wagon-train filed into the tery, the horn of seventeen engagements, always road for this place. I came at the same time, successful, but this time doomed to defeat--they General Smith had formed his line of battle, and double-charged their guns with canister, and was skirmishing when I left. The Thirteenth adding a bag of bullets, mowed the enemy down, army corps also came here, they being worn out only to have their places filled again by the ad- and cut to pieces. vancing hordes.
But the battery support were Now let me estimate our losses. First, in the forced back, and the enemy made a dash and Thirteenth army corps alone, I put it at one took the guns. The cavalry by this time were thousand, killed and wounded, and one thousand in a panic, our infantry were driven out of the two hundred taken prisoners; and this out of woods to the Chicago NIercantile battery, where four thousand men. We lost seventeen pieces they made a desperate effort to check the enemy. of artillery, and about seventy-five wagons, loadThe battery, in connection with the First Indi- ed with ammunition, supplies, and forage; also ana, did good work, but all to no purpose, as far sixteen ambulances, and nearly all our wounded. as checking the enemy was concerned. The Poor boys! to be wounded and also prisonerstroops fell back to the woods on this side of the my heart bleeds for them. field, the enemy in close pursuit. Now all will On the afternoon of the ninth, General Smith ask: “Where was the Nineteenth army corps ?” had one of the severest engagements of the war; Let me tell you; back in the woods, some six l but he, being something of a general, succeeded
in giving the enemy what they had given us- rebels before they had marched two miles. Fightthat is, a whipping. lle recaptured sixteen ing began at once, and the enemy were rapidly pieces of artillery, but was not able to take them driven before our troops. This running style of off the field, but destroyed them. He also cap- fight was kept up for fourteen miles, until they tured some five hundred prisoners and some of had got two miles beyond Pleasant Hill. our wagous back, and as I write, fell back to this Here a force of two thousand five hundred point, where we will prepare again to meet the rebel cavalry, commanded by General Green, enemy, if he should think of following, which I were found strongly posted on Wilson's plantadon't think he will; but while writing this, I tion. The rebels were deployed along the edge hear cannonading, and who knows what may of a dense strip of woods with an open field in come? I will not predict, however. Now let front, over which we had to charge in order to me say I think-and we all think
-We might reach them. The only Union soldiers that had just as well had a victory as a defeat, and, if I advanced far enough to take part in the fight, mistake not, some high official will get beheaded. which was inevitable, was the cavalry brigade of I most sincerely hope so. I am opposed to in- Lee's corps, commanded by Colonel Harai Robincompetency in any place, more particularly here son. As he had either to attack or be attacked, in the army. General Smith fought his own men he decided to take the initiative, and he led his and won a victory, and had General Ransom had men in with such a dash and vigor, that at last the same privilege, we would not have been the enemy was completely whipped and driven whipped. Of one thing I am certain, our few from the field. This engagement lasted two remaining boys will fight no more under such hours and a half, and our losses amounted to commanders. I, for one, do not blame them. I about forty killed and wounded, the enemy's may be severe, but can you blame me when I being at least as many. Colonel Robinson piirsee it is sacrifice after sacrifice? We were al- sued the retreating rebels as far as Bayou du ways victorious until we came here, and would Paul, where he found they had received heavy be so here if we had a Grant to lead us, yes, or reënforcements, including four pieces of artillery, a McClernand, who is buried at Pass Cavallo be- and were again in line of battle, waiting attack. cause he ranks Franklin, and the noble, brave, As it was nearly dark, and the risk was too great and generous Ransom is sacrificed. May he in attacking again with his small force, he placed ventilate this as he well knows how. I think he his men in the most advantageous position availawill, I hope he will report. I send you the in- ble, and awaited the progress of events. Nothing closed list of killed, wounded, and missing of further was accomplished on the first day. four companies of the Seventy-seventh Illinois, During the night, a brigade of infantry, comcompanies D, C, II, and B. I could fill sheets manded by Colonel Landrum, came up, and early with incidents of this battle; some would cause in the morning of the following day, (Friday, the mirth, some tears, all would 'nerve the hearts of eighth,) the march was resumed. The rebels the brave to do battle for their brothers and their were found to be on the alert, and ready for the country. Many of those reported among the fray, and fighting opened almost at once. missing will certainly be numbered with the The disposition of our forces at the beginning dead and wounded. May I never see the like of this day's battle was: Colonel Landrum's again!
infantry brigade on the right of the Shreveport
road, and Colonel Lucas's cavalry brigade on the NET-ORLEANS “ ERA" ACCOUNT.
lest. The skirmishing was fierce, and every foot
New-ORLEANS, April 15. of ground won from the enemy had to be taken We are enabled to lay before our readers this by hard knocks, but at two o'clock in the aftermorning a full and connected history of the re- noon, our forces had compelled the rebels to recent great battles and Union victory in Western treat seven miles. Our losses, as well as the Louisiana, and one which can be relied upon as enemy's, were very severe during this time. truthful. The fighting was terrific, and the casu- Lieutenant Colonel Webb, of the Seventy-seventh alties very great, but there can be little doubt Illinois, shot through the head and instantly that the blow has terribly impaired, if not killed; and Captain Breese, commanding Sixth destroyed, the rebel power in this State. It is Missouri cavalry, severely wounded in the arm, possible, and even probable, that another engage- being among the casualties on our side. ment will be fought, as we learn, on good author- The enemy were now met in strong force, ity, that General Banks expressed the intention under command of General Kirby Smith. That of giving battle once more as soon as opportunity Generals Dick Taylor, Mouton, Green, and Price offered. We gain the subjoined account from were also there, was afterward ascertained from eye-witnesses and participants.
prisoners, who also stated that they had under Our army broke camp at Natchitoches on the them froin eighteen thousand to twenty thousand morning of the sixth instant, and marched out men, while our force, comparatively, were a mero on the Shreveport roaid, the cavalry advancing handful. The rebels occupied a strong position twenty-one miles and resting for the night at in the vicinity of Sabine Cross-Roads, concealed Crump's Hill, the infantry halting three or four in the edge of a dense wood, with an open field miles to the rear, on the banks of a bayou. On in front, the Shreveport road passing through the following morning, at daybreak, the cavalry their lines. General Ransom arriving on the again started, and came upon a body of mounted I field with his command, formed his line as well
as circumstances would permit, after reconnoi- manded by the rebel General Mouton, who fell tring and feeling the rebel position. Colonel shot through the body with four balls. Emerson's brigade, of the Thirteenth corps, was The fighting on all parts of our line was now stationed on the left of the line, with Nim's at short-range, and to use the expression of one Vassachusetts battery; Colonel Landrum's of the participants: “We were holding on by the fori es, parts of two brigades, on the right and skin of our teeth only." It was known that centre, with Rawles's battery G, Fisth regulars, Franklin's troops had been sent for, and anxious and a battery of the First Indiana artillery in and wistful were the glances cast to the rear. rear of his right and centre. Colonci Dudley's General Cameron with his brigade came up, and brigade of cavalry (of Lee's corps) supported going at once into action on the right, where the the left, and held itself in readiness to repel any battle again waxed hottest, created the impresattempt to flank; while Lucas protected the sion that the veterans of the Nineteenth had arright flank. Colonel Robinson, with his brigade, rived, and a glad and exultant shout went up was in rear of the centre, protecting the wagon- from our wearied and desperately situated little train, which was on the Shreveport road,
band. This belief was strengthened by the General Banks and staff rode upon the field arrival of General Franklin, who dashed boldly by the time this disposition of our forces was into the thickest of the fray, cap in hand and effected, and word was sent back to General cheering on the men. General Banks, too, seemed Franklin to make all speed for the scene of the ubiquitous, riding wherever the men wavered, momentarily expected battle. It was the design and by personal example inciting them to renewed of General Banks to remain quiet until the deeds of daring and reckless valor. Colonels balance of his army came up, and then open the Clark and Wilson, with other members of the battle himself; but Kirby Smith, knowing his staff, sabre in hand, mixed with the soldiers on own superiority in numbers, began the conflict foot and horseback, and cheered and encouraged before they could arrive.
them to continue the unequal fight. About five o'clock the firing between the skir- But human beings could not longer withstand mishers became very hot, and in a short time such fierce and overpowering onslaughts as our our skirmish-line was driven back upon the men were bearing up against, and our line finally main body by an overwhelming force. The gave way at all points, and the men fell back, whole strength of the enemy was then advanced, fiercely contesting the ground they yielded. Unand heavy and repeated volleys were discharged fortunately a sad mishap befell them at this time. and replied to on our right and centre. Soon The large and cumbersome wagon-train blocked this portion of our line became heavily engaged, up the way; the frightened horses dashed through and all our available strength was required to the infantry lines, entangled themselves with the prerent its being crushed by the masses of the artillery, and created a momentary but unforenemy.
Our left, which was now also hotly tunate confusion. This gave the rebels, who fighting, was necessarily much weakened, and it were rapidly pressing us, possession of several was observed that a strong body of the enemy pieces of artillery. was massing in a dense piece of woods, prepara- General Franklin was conspicuous during this tory to dashing down and flanking this end of part of the day, rallying the men, and two horses the line. The danger was plain and imminent, were killed under him ; Captain Chapman, of but there was no remedy. General Stone ordered his staff, had both feet taken off by a round General Lee to have Nim's battery withdrawn, shot, and the horse of Captain Franklin was although it was doing great execution, in order killed at the same time. that it might not become a prize to the enemy, The enemy followed our men step by step for and General Lee sent his aid-de-camp, Colonel three and a half miles, but he was advancing to J. S. Brisbin, to withdraw the battery. On meet a fearful retribution. The Nineteenth army reaching the point, its removal was found impos- corps had been ordered to stop and form its line sible, nearly every one of the horses having been of battle—the retreating Union troops passed killed. In a few moments more a solid mass of through this line and formed in the rear. The the rebels swept down upon the spot, and four rebels, thinking they had repulsed our whole arof the guns were taken, the other two being my, dashed impetuously on, and through the dragged from the field by hand. The havoc line, but half visible through the woods before made in the ranks of the enemy at this point of them, was another feeble but desperate stand of the action is represented as appalling, the whole a few men. six guns belching forth double charges of grape General Emory commanded this force, consistand canister; and some live or six rounds were ing of two full brigades, and he ordered the fire fired between the time the rebels left the woods' to be reserved until the rebels were within shortuntil the artillerymen were forced from their range, when from both infantry and the artillery pieces. As the rebels were in mass, the execu- posted thickly along his line, a storm of iron and tion such a shower of missiles caused can be Icad was hurled upon the foe that literally mowed casily imagined. The two senior officers of the them down. The rebels halted in amazement, battery were wounded, Lieutenant Snow mor- but still they fought, and bravely. Volley after tally, he having since died.
volley was discharged from each side full into The forces that made this charge were coin the ranks of their opponents, but neither gave
signs of yielding, and night charitably threw Thirteenth corps was in reserve in the rear un. her mantle over the ghastly scene, and enforced der General Cameron—General Ransom having a cessation of hostilities,
been wounded the day before. General Smith The two divisions under command of General was Commander-in-Chief of the two lines back A. J. Smith, belonging to the Sixteenth and of the crest, while General Mower was the imSeventeenth army corps, had reached Pleasant mediate commander of the men. The commander Hill, and were there halted, General Banks de- of the right brigade in General Smith's first line termining to withdraw his army to that point, for was Colonel Lynch; the left brigade was Colonel the sake of the advantageous position which he Shaw's. The second line also consisted of two could there occupy, knowing that the enemy brigades, the right under control of Colonel would follow what they supposed to be a demor- and the left commanded by Colonel Hill. Crawalized army. In accordance with this plan of ford's Third Indiana battery was posted on the operations, all our men were quietly withdrawn right of the Eighty-ninth Indiana infantry, and from the enemy's front, and the line of march the Ninth Indiana battery on the right of the taken up for Pleasant Hill. This conjunction of line of battle. The Missouri Iron Sun battery, his forces was satisfactorily effected, and the re- and others whose names and numbers we could sult confidently awaited. So well was the move- not ascertain, were also in this section of the ment conducted that although the first body battle. started at ten o'clock, and the remainder were The skirmishing was kept up with considerable not all under way until nearly day, the rebels vigor until about five v'clock in the afternoon, had not the slightest suspicion of what was go- when the rebels had completed their arrangeing on.
ments for the attack. At about this hour GenAt seven o'clock on Saturday morning, our eral Emory's skirmish-line was driven in on the forces were all at Pleasant Hill, and the rebels right by the rebels, who appeared in large force, were advancing, cavalry in front, endeavoring to coming through the timber above mentioned. discover our position. Colonel O. P. Gooding, They soon reached the open ground, and moved with his brigade of Lee's cavalry corps, was sent on to the attack in three lines of battle. Our out on the Shreveport road, to meet the enemy batteries and infantry opened with terrible effect, and draw him on. He had gone about a mile doing great slaughter with grape and canister, when he came upon the rebel advance. Skir- while the enemy's artillery, being in the woods mishing immcdiately ensued, and according to and in bad position, did scarcely any damage. the plan he slowly fell back. The fight was
Colonel Benedict's brigade on the left was first very sharp between these cavalry bodies, and engaged, soon followed by Dwight's and McMilGoodling lost nearly forty men killed and wound lan's. This fighting was terrific--old soldiers ed, inflicting, however, as much damage as he say it never was surpassed for desperation. Notreceived. Among his casualties are Captain withstanding the terrible havoc in their ranks, Becker and Lieutenant Hall, of the Second New- the enemy pressed fiercely on, slowly pushing York veteran cavalry. Lieutenant llall has since the men of the Nineteenth corps back, up the died of his wounds. Colonel Gooding made a hill, but not breaking their line of battle. A narrow escape, a ball passing through and tear- sudden and bold dash of the rebels on the right ing the crown out of his hat, and graz n; the gave them possession of Taylor's battery, and skin. The brigade behaved very gallantly, cov- forced our line still further back. ering General Emory's front until his line was Now came the grand coup de main. The Nineformed.
teenth, on arriving at the top of the bill, suddenly The battle-field of Pleasant Hill is a large, filed off over the hill and passed through the open field, which had once been cultivated, but lines of General Smith. We must here mention is now overgrown with weeds and bushes. The that the rebels were now in but two lines of slightly elevated centre of the field, from which battle, the first having been almost annihilated the name Pleasant Hill is taken, is nothing more by General Emory, what remained being forced than a long mound, hardly worthy the name of back into the second line. But these two lines hill. A semicircular belt of timber runs around came on exultant and sure of victory. the field on the Shreveport side. General Emory The first passed over the knoll, and, all heedformed his line of battle on the side facing these less of the long line of cannons and crouching woodis, General McMillan's brigade being posted forms of as brave men as ever trod mother earth, on the right, General Dwight's on the centre, and pressed on. The second line appeared on the Colonel Benedict's on the left. Taylor's battery crest, and the death-signal was sounded. Words L, First regulars, had four guns in rear of the left cannot describe the awful effect of this diswing, on the left of the Shreveport road, and two charge. Seven thousand rifles, and several bat. on the road in rear of General Dwight's line. teries of artillery, each gun loaded to the muzzle Ilibberd's Vermont battery was on the right. with grape and canister, were fired simulta
In the rear of Emory, and concealed by the neously, and the whole centre of the rebel line rising ground, were General Smith's tried troops was crushed down as a field of ripe wheat formed in two lines of battle fifty yards apart. through which a tornado had passed. It is esAll his artillery was in the front line, a piece, i timated that one thousand men were hurried into section or battery being on the flank of each eternity or frightfully mangled by this one disregiinent, the infantry lying between them. The charge.