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to ensure, and the rebels broke and fled toward Corinth in confusion, pursued by our cavalry. Our loss was only two killed and eleven wounded; the enemy's thirty killed and many wounded.
Farmington was in our possession, but the main battle was yet to come. On the 9th, the enemy twenty thousand strong, drove in our pickets beyond Farmington, and advanced upon the forces under Generals Palmer and Paine evidently with the intention of flanking them and cutting them off from the main army. Gen. Paine at once engaged them, and for live hours the battle was continuous and fiercely waged. Gen. Halleck's orders, however, were peremptory that a general engagement should not be brought on. In accordance with these instructions, Gen. Paine's troops fell back after stubbornly disputing the enemy's advance and finding out their strength. The enemy made a demonstration to pursue, but abandoned the movement. Our loss in the engagement was twenty-one killed, one hundred and forty wounded, and ten missing. Among the killed was the brave Lieut.-Col. Miles of the Forty-seventh Illinois. His leg was crushed by a cannon ball, and he died in a short time from hemorrhage. Major Zenas Applington of the 7th Illinois cavalry also fell mortally wounded while gallantly leading his regiment. The Illinois regiments engaged in this fight were the 42d, Col Roberts; 27th, Lieut.-Colonel Harrington; 22d, Lieut.-Colonel Hart; 51st, Lieut.-Col. Bradley; 26th, Col. Loomis; and 47th, Col. Bryner. It was pre-eminently an Illinois battle, and, although fighting at fearful odds (nearly six to one) the luster of her achievements was in no wise dimmed.
On the 21st of May another armed reconnoissance was made by the 2d division, commanded by Brig.-General Thomas A. Davis, which fought a battle with the enemy's advance line on Phillip's Creek, resulting in their rout and the occupation of a new and advantageous position by our forces. The same day another reconnoissance was made by Col. Sedgwick's brigade, which was successful in ascertaining the position of a part of the enemy's line. During all these reconnoissances and battles between disjointed fragments of either army, the main army of Gen. Halleck was advancing slowly and cautiously, throwing out successive parallels, as if a siege of the works at Corinth were intended. The railroad INTO CORINTH. 287
communication to the northward and southward of Corinth had been destroyed at Purdy and Glendale. To complete the severance of communication and thereby prevent reinforcements reaching the rebels, Gen. Halleck directed that the railroad to the southward of Corinth and in the direction of Mobile should be destroyed. This was effected on the night of the 30th by Col. Elliott. On the 28th, three strong reconnoitering columns advanced on the right, center and left. The rebels hotly contested the ground but were driven at each point. On the 29th, Gen. Pope's heavy batteries opened upon the enemy's entrenchments and drove the rebels from their advanced battery, and at the same time Gen. Sherman established a new battery within a thousand yards of the rebel works.
But while our army was thus slowly and cautiously approaching Corinth, the enemy were rapidly leaving it. The sick and wounded were removed on the 26th. On the 27th, Bragg and Beauregard made their arrangements for falling back, and on the 29th it was safely accomplished. With an army entrenched in successive strong parallels, with heavy siege guns converging upon every part of their works, with the Union army so massed that it could sweep down through Farmington and obtain complete possession of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, with the Mississippi River open and Fort Pillow evacuated as it must be in a short time, it would have been sheer folly for Beauregard to wait in Corinth and expose his whole army to capture or annihilation. On Friday, the 30th, the Union forces entered Corinth. Desolation and destruction were on every hand. Burned buildings stood on every street. Huge piles of commissary stores were still smoldering in the flames. The only ammunition remaining was damaged and useless. The evacuation was complete—so complete that the rebels not alone successfully withdrew, but took every piece of ordnance with them.
The Illinois troops bore an honorable and conspicuous part in the closing scenes around Corinth. A brigade from Gen. Mcdemand's division, a brigade from Gen. Hurlbut's division, Gen. John A. Logan's brigade, and two brigades of Gen. Sherman's command were prominent in the fighting of the last two days. Waterhouse's and Silversparre's batteries did magnificent execution. Of Gen. Logan's efforts, Gen. Sherman thus speaks: "I feel under special obligations to this officer, who, during the two days he served under me, held the critical ground on my right, extending down to the railroad. All the time he had in his front a large force of the enemy, but so dense was the foliage that he could not reckon their strength save what he could see on the railroad track." Finally it was reserved for Lieut. Baker, of the Yates sharpshooters, to be the first man in the rebel works, and Col. David Stuart, of the fighting 55th, claims the honor of first raising the Stars and Stripes over Corinth.
The pursuit of the retreating rebels was vigorously kept up. Gen. Pope's cavalry escort pushed after them and had a brisk skirmish, in which several prisoners were captured. A burning bridge obstructed the operations of this force, and another was sent out by Gen. Pope, under Gen. Granger, on the Booneville road. It left Farmington on the 30th, and the same day drove out the rear guard of the enemy posted on Tuscumbia Creek, eight miles south of Corintb. Gen. Granger passed Rienzi only two hours behind the retreating enemy. On the afternoon of June 1st, the rear guard was again overtaken near Boonville. Skirmishing was kept up on the 2d, and on the 3d a reconnoissance was made toward Baldwin and the rebels driven across Twenty Mile Creek. On the 4th, another reconnoissance was made by Col. Elliott, via Blocklands, with similar results, and on the 10 th, the occupation of Baldwin and Gun town ended the chase.
During the months of June and July, important changes were made in the army at Corinth. On the 10th, Gen, Buell left with the main body of his army for Chattanooga, to counteract the designs of Bragg, who had massed his army at Chattanooga and Knoxville, by suddenly moving his force from Tupelo, in Mississippi, through the States of Alabama and Georgia, thus reaching Chattanooga in advance of Gen. Buell. On the 27th of the same month, Gen, Pope was assigned to the command of the Army of the Potomac,, and on the 23d of July, Gen. Halleck assumed the duties of Generalin-Chief of all the armies in the field.
Nothing of interest transpired in Gen. Grant's department until August, when it became apparent that the rebel force south of Ids position were threatening his line between Corinth in Mississippi and Tuscumbia in Alabama. On the 10th of September, Colonel ITTKA 289
Murphy^s force fell back from Tuscumbia upon luka. Here he was attacked by the rebel cavalry, and after a slight resistance fled and took up a position at Jacinto. Gens. Grant, and Rosecrans who had succeeded Gen. Pope, acted in concert to check the movements of Price, one force moving by way of Brownsville and the other by way of Jacinto. The battle of luka was the result of these combinations. It commenced on the 19th with an attack upon Price by Stanley's and Hamilton's divisions of cavalry a short distance south of the village. The advance pickets of the enemy were driven in by the third Michigan cavalry dismounted. Skirmishing was kept up until within two miles of luka, when the enemy made a furious attack. Our force took positions under a terrible fire of grape and canister. The 5th Iowa, 26th Missouri and 48th Indiana with the 11th Ohio battery, bore the brunt of the attack until relieved by the 4th Minnesota and 16th Iowa. The attack was renewed with overwhelming numbers and with great fierceness. The 10th Iowa and 12th Wisconsin battery were hurried into position, but still the rebel force vastly outnumbered ours. Our line wavered and rallied. The battery was taken and retaken three times, and the fortune of the fight trembled in the balance. Gen. Stanley threw his forces into the breach. The rebels then massed against the left flank and tried to turn it, but were repulsed. At five p. M., our forces were all in position and from that time until dark the battle was fought with a bravery almost unequaled. The rebels tried, with frantic desperation, but in vain, to break our lines. The 5th Iowa held its ground against four times its numbers, making three desperate charges with the bayonet, driving the rebels every time, and only falling back when every cartridge was exhausted, and night closed in and the Union army held the battle field.
The next morning Gen. Rosecrans ordered the picket line to advance, but they met no opposition. The whole force was then thrown forward and entered luka to find it evacuated by Price, who had four miles the start. The cavalry kept up the pursuit until evening, capturing many prisoners. The forces of Gens. Grant and Ord returned to Corinth on the 22d, and the Army of the Mississippi to Jacinto. The 11th Missouri, which did some of the most glorious and desperate fighting in this battle, was in reality an Illinois regiment. At the time of the organization of the regiment the quota of Illinois was full, and rather than not have an opportunity of going into the service they obtained an organization under the laws of Missouri.
On the 26th Gen. Rosecrans proceeded to Corinth and took command of that position, Gen. Grant having been ordered to Jackson and Gen. Ord to Bolivar. In the meantime Price, in his retreat, had been reinforced by Van Dorn and Lovell, and the combined forces moved against Corinth. On the night of the 3d of October, the rebels formed their line within a thousand yards of the Union position and soon after day-break on the 4th opened a furious fire on Corinth. About half past nine the rebels massed their forces and advanced up the Bolivar road in the shape of a wedge, to attack a point completely covered by our artillery. In spite of the hideous rents made in their lines they continued to advance and suddenly extended their force to right and left and approached, covering the whole field. The entire Union line opened fire upon them, but still they advanced. As they approached the crest of a hill where Gen. Davis' division was posted, the division gave way in disorder and the rebels gained possession of Gen. Rosecrans' head-quarters and threatened Fort Richardson. They swarmed up the hill and were swept away. They rallied and again attacked the redoubt and the battery gave way. Then Illinois sprang to the rescue. The 56th Illinois, rising from cover, fired a deadly volley and making the air ring with their battle shout, charged like an avalanche upon the rebels. Nothing could withstand this superhuman effort. The rebels broke and fled. The lost ground was recovered and the whole Union line again advanced to its old position. While Price was there defeated, Van Dorn was attacking on the left the batteries of Williams and Robinett. The fight at these points was fearful. The 11th Missouri (Illinois), the 63d, 27th and 39th Ohio regiments, supported by the 18th U. S. artillery, formed into line and the rebels rushed upon them. A furious hand to hand combat ensued and the carnage was terrible. Bayonets were used, muskets clubbed, and men were felled with the fist, while all the time the guns of Robinett were pouring grape and canister into the rebel ranks with deadly effect. Our forces were again the victors. The rebels fled,