The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 41, In Four Parts. Part 1, Reports. Page: 667
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PRICE'S MISSOURI EXPEDITION.
to fall back toward the Blue and to place my pickets. I obeyed the
order and the'brigade started down the road, with the exception of
Erwin's regiment that remained to picket the road.
At this time a messenger met the head of the column with orders to
hurry to the assistance of yourself, who with Jackman's brigade and
Gordon's regiment had been fighting the enemy on the extreme left.
The column started at a gallop, led by the gallant Slayback, who hap-
pened to have his command in front when the order was received, and
we were soon upon the field that you were fighting upon. The brigade
was thrown into line as speedily as possible, but the enemy retired
before we went into action. Darkness had now arrived and we were
ordered to bivouac in line of battle, with Jackman's brigade in the open
prairie, and thus we passed the night.
On the morning of the 23d we were ordered to march toward West-
port, and we soon found ourselves confronted by the enemy, who had a
battery commanding the road and covering the approaches to the town.
Collins' battery was placed in position and Elliott's regiment and Will
iams' command were left to cover the guns and right of the road. I
went with Gordon's, Smith's, Slayback's, and Johnson's commands to the
left of the road and advanced upon the enemy. The fighting became
very spirited, and upon our advancing,Colonel Smith's horse was shot
and his men fell back, exposing the left of Gordon's regiment. One of
the regiments of Jackman's brigade charged the force that had fronted
Smith, but this regiment was also compelled to fall back. At this stage
I ordered Slayback and Johnson with their recruits to charge this force
of the enemy, and it was done, in most gallant style, driving them from
the timber in which they were posted and occupying it themselves.
Gordon's regiment had stood firmly under a galling fire all this time,
having in its front an enemy posted behind a stone fence that could not
be charged on account of intervening fences.
About this time that gallant charge in column down the road was
made by McGhee's regiment of Arkansas troops which resulted so dis-
astrously to the brave men who made it. Having gained the grove of
timber we were not long in flanking the stone fence behind which the
enemy was, and soon dislodged him. It was in this movement that Lieut.
James Wood was wounded while conversing with me. We now took
position behind the same fence that the enemy had held, but the posi-
tion in line of my regiments was changed. Slayback was on the right,
next Johnson, next Smith, and Gordon had the left, with Jackman's
brigade still on his left. We quietly held this situation for some time
waiting for a supply of ammunition, which was delayed in arriving by
our distance from the train. During this delay Collins' rifled guns
were moved up to the position that had been occupied by the enemy's
guns and opened. One of the rifled guns burst the first fire. As soon
as we were supplied with ammunition and prepared to move forward
orders were received for us to fall back, and we did so in line of battle
under a heavy fire from the enemy's batteries. We had just passed
through the fields in which we had been fighting into the open prairie
when you ordered me to form the line facing eastward, and shortly
after you-ordered us to charge the enemy then in our front. Our line
was not complete, but the regiments that were formed bravely threw
themselves against the foe, and breaking their first line we were sur-
prised to find a long line of infantry and a battery in position imme-
diately in their rear. At this instant, while our lines were broken and
our long-range guns discharged, the enemy with a fresh line charged
our right, and then for the first time on this campaign Shelby's brigade
CHAP. LIII.. ,
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United States. War Department. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 41, In Four Parts. Part 1, Reports., book, 1893; Washington D.C.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth145053/m1/684/?q=McGhee: accessed August 16, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.