Today in History:

77 Series I Volume XXXIV-III Serial 63 - Red River Campaign Part III


were in strength on Red River. Of course the gun-boats will be invaluable up Red River, for the reason that from Bayou Rapides down to New Orleans all the p[lantations lie along the river banks within range of their shot, and all roads are forced to follow the levees for long distances. Above Bayou Rapides the roads lie back, though the plantations of any value are on the alluvial lands of Red River, or bayous communicating with it.

I cannot but think you will find among the planters a good deal of friendship, not that they love us much, but themselves more, and they must see that was to them is utter and inevitable ruin. Of all the Southern States Louisiana had least cause to rebel, and I know that even after Governor Moore had arranged to go out with the cotton States the people voted against it, though no attention was paid to their vote. Mr. Elgee, Judge Ariel, and Judge Boyce, at Alexandria, are reliable, and if you could see them privately they would be frank and outspoken. Charley Boyce, of Alexandria, though in the Confederate service, is a Union man.

If I can get the Missouri and Kansas troops for you, I will push them down with dispatch in boats. If you can accomplish in Red River what you did in Arkansas, you will be entitled to the gratitude and admiration of all sensible men. From me you shall have every assistance and aid. Your requisitions on Vicksburg and Memphis, as well as your own, depots, shall be filled.

Truly, your friend,



Five miles South of Elkins' Ferry, Camp No. 9,

April 7, 1864.

Brigadier General N. KIMBALL,

Commanding U. S. Forces along the Line of the Arkansas, &c.:

GENERAL: We have been delayed a week by the failure of Thayer to make a junction with us and our failure to ascertain where he was. We were under the necessity of going 50 miles out of our way on account of bad roads. We have had two severe skirmishes with Marmaduke in front and Shelby in rear, and have lost in all something over 80 in killed, wounded, and missing, 4 officers slightly wounded. General Rice was in the thickest of both fights. In the fight with Marmaduke a piece of his scalp was taken away by a canister-shot, and upon retiring from the field he presented a very sanguinary appearance, his wound having bled profusely. shelby charged our artillery three times in the most gallant style, and the Fiftieth Indiana distinguished themselves in repulsing him. In a dispatch to marmaduke, Shelby acknowledged to have failed and to have suffered severely in both men and horses. One of his captains was killed. It is possible that his loss was near 100 men. At the time this fight was going on in rear the First [Iowa] Cavalry was engaged with Marmaduke's advance near the village of Antoine and drove them across the Little Missouri. My column had at this time turned off the military road toward Elkin's Ferry. As the First Iowa had encountered Marmaduke's artillery posted in a commanding position, I sent orders for them to fall back and join the column, which they did with the loss of 1 man mortally wounded. General Carr pushed on and got possession of Elkin's Ford, on Little Missouri.