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Series 1 Volume XXX; Part 2

SEPTEMBER 11-16, 1863. - Expedition from Corinth, Miss., to Henderson, Tenn., with Skirmishes at Clark's Creek Church (13th) and near Henderson (14th).



 
 
Report of Maj. George H. Estabrook, Seventh Illinois (mounted) Infantry.
 
CORINTH, MISS.,
September 16, 1863.
 

SIR: I would respectfully submit the following report:


Agreeably to orders from headquarters Left Wing, I started with the Seventh Illinois Mounted Infantry and 100 men of the Tenth Missouri Cavalry, under Major Lusk, in all 400 men, at 4 p. m. September 11, camping that night 6 miles south of Adamsville, avoiding Purdy on the route.


Started early next morning, and marched to within 4 miles of Jack's Creek, avoiding all main roads, and camping on a road leading from the Lexington to Saltillo road; learned on the route that Newsom, Wilson, and others were to concentrate their forces at or near Jack's Creek on Saturday and Sunday, 12th and 13th instant, and to gather up their conscripts preparatory to crossing the river.


This evening, as I was preparing to encamp, my advance encountered an outpost or scouting party of the enemy and gave them chase, capturing one of Newsom's command. I sent 100 men, under command of Captain Johnson, to Jack's Creek to reconnoiter; met the enemy's pickets 1 mile east of town, drove them in, and dashed into town, the enemy having taken position near Beaver's Mills, 3 miles farther north and reported in force, and it being too dark for farther successful reconnoitering, the expedition returned to camp about 12 midnight.


Next morning, 13th, received dispatches from Captain Harrison, then at Adamsville, on his way to Corinth with prisoners, &c. My orders being to clean out what guerrillas I might find, as well as to form a junction with Harrison, I felt at liberty to move on in pursuit of Newsom, and so marched forward, encountering a small squad of the enemy, who were evidently on the lookout, about 1 mile north of Jack's Creek, captured 1 man, and pushed steadily forward to Beaver's Mills, after fully exploring the timber where the enemy had that morning been encamped. Halted command at Beaver s Mills, and sent a reconnoitering party of cavalry toward Clark's Creek Church, where it was reported the enemy were to meet in an advantageous position.


This church is 3 miles from the mills. The party sent reported the enemy -in force at the church with strong pickets. Pushed forward, driving in the pickets, the enemy breaking up into small squads, and scattering in different directions through the country. Followed the main force in a southwest direction to Bray's Mills, on Clark's Creek, our advance having frequent skirmishes and capturing several of the enemy; encamped that night at the ford near Bray's house on road to Henderson.


Learning from refugees who came to camp that night that the enemy were probably encamped in swamp just north of Henderson, protected by cane-brake, I pushed forward next morning to Henderson, and sent 100 mounted infantry and 50 cavalry to beat up their camp, holding the remainder of the force in reserve.


The enemy had decamped, probably taking the road toward Jackson, where they had already sent 60 conscripts.


Our rations being exhausted, and not deeming it advisable to pursue the enemy farther, I started next morning for Corinth. About 5 miles out from Henderson, on the Purdy road, my rear guard was attacked by 100 of Wilson's command. In driving off this force 1 man of the Tenth Missouri was killed; 2 horses also killed; not known what damage was inflicted on the enemy.


Had learned the day before that Wilson was encamped at or near Medon, and during the skirmish Lieutenant Harrison, of the scouts, who had been sent to Montezuma for news, captured a citizen named Henry Hanns, about one-half mile from the enemy's attack and running toward Montezuma, evidently being a spy. Lieutenant Harrison called on him to halt, which he refused, when he was fired upon and wounded, but he still refused to halt until knocked from his horse. He is now in stockade with other prisoners. From this place my rear was continually harassed until within 6 miles of Purdy.


Encamped 3 miles north of Purdy and returned to Corinth the morning of the 16th.


I captured 21 prisoners of Newsom's and Wilson's command, also 21 horses and mules.


I also brought in 6 citizens charged with harboring and feeding guerrillas.


I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


 
GEO. H. ESTABROOK,
Major Seventh Illinois Infantry, Comdg. Expedition.
 
Lieut. J. W. BARNES,
A. A. A. G., Hdqrs. Left Wing 16th Army Corps.
 
 

 

 

 
Title: The war of the rebellion: a compilation of the official records of the Union and Confederate armies.
Series 1Volume XXX; Part 2 - Reports; Page 652 - 653
Chapter:XLII - Operations in Kentucky, Southwest Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, North Alabama, and North Georgia. August 11-October 19, 1863.
Author: United States. War Dept., John Sheldon Moody, Calvin Duvall Cowles, Frederick Caryton Ainsworth, Robert N. Scott, Henry Martyn Lazelle, George Breckenridge Davis, Leslie J. Perry, Joseph William Kirkley
Published: Washington: Government Printing Office
Date: 1890