Gen Ross: “A Dispatch just rec’d from Col Crocker comdg at Bolivar reports a large force of Infantry & Cavalry approaching that place”

Aug 30 1862.  I have received a telegram from Gen. Leonard F. Ross in Jackson, TN.

A Dispatch just rec’d from Col Crocker comdg at Bolivar reports a large force of Infantry & Cavalry approaching that place on Grand Junction to Middlebury Road.  He has drawn their cavalry back from his picket lines & skirmishing is now going on.

 

Later, I received another telegram from Gen. Ross,

I have just rec’d the following from Col Crocker at Bolivar.  Col Leggett was sent out this morning about 9 nine o’clock with his brigade and Six 6 companies of cavalry and one section of artillery.  He has been skirmishing ever since.  Several have been killed.

Col. Leggett has sent in for reinforcements.  I have sent him three 3 regiments.

He is out about four 4 miles.  If hard pushed he will fall back to report.

The force of rebels about 4000 cavalry.  I have no fears as to the result.

 

Finally I received this from Gen. Ross,

Hearing by telegraph of the engagement with the Enemy below this place, I took the evening train and arrived here at 6 Oclock this evening.  I have just had the following report of the days work, from Col. Crocker, of the 13th Iowa Vol., who was in command.

I am proud of my command here; the officers and men, from all accounts, acted most gallantly.

 

Col. Crocker’s report read,

Number 2. Report of Colonel Marcellus M. Crocker, Thirteenth Iowa Infantry, commanding Second Division, District of Jackson, Tenn., of skirmish near Bolivar, Tenn., August 30, 1862.

HDQRS. SECOND DIVISION, DISTRICT OF JACKSON, Bolivar, Tenn., August 30, 1862.

Colonel Leggett, commanding the First Brigade, was sent out by me this morning on the Grand Junction road, with one regiment of his brigade; four companies of the Second Illinois Cavalry, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Hogg; two companies of the Eleventh Illinois Cavalry, under command of Major Puterbaugh, and one section of artillery, with instruction to drive off a force of the enemy’s cavalry, supposed to be 150 strong, and reconnoiter the country. Upon arriving at the ground Colonel Leggett at once became engaged with a large force of the enemy’s cavalry. The engagement lasted about seven hours, mostly skirmishing, but occasionally becoming a hand-to-hand fight, our forces repelling charges of the enemy’s cavalry. About 4 p.m. the enemy drew back, and Colonel Leggett, receiving re-enforcements about that time, did not renew the attack. I then ordered Colonel Leggett to fall back with his entire force to a position inside our picket lines, where he is now stationed, expecting a renewal of the attack at daylight.

We have lost in killed and wounded about 25, Lieutenant-Colonel Hogg, of the Second Illinois Cavalry, among the number.

During the engagement to day all the men [infantry, cavalry, and artillery] behaved with the greatest gallantry and, though opposed by largely superior numbers, not only maintained their ground but drove the enemy back. The force of the enemy engaged was seven regiments of cavalry.

Yours, respectfully,

M. M. CROCKER,

Colonel Thirteenth Iowa Vols., Commanding Second Division,

District of Jackson, at Bolivar, Tenn.

 

The Papers of Ulysses S Grant, Vol 5, p 339-40

O.R., I, xvii, part 1, p 45-6

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