Report of Col. Edward Siber, Thirty-seventh Ohio Infantry
CAMP OF THE 37TH REGT. OHIO VOL. INFANTRYCAPTAIN: In obedience to orders just received, I hereby report the part taken by the Thirty-seventh Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry in the expedition to Deer Creek:
Young’s Point, La., March 29, 1863
The regiment moved with the brigade on the morning of March 17 from camp to the upper landing; was there embarked with the Thirtieth Ohio on board of the steamer Fanny Ogden, and disembarked on the morning of the 18th at Gwin’s plantation, on the left bank of the Mississippi.
At this point the regiment bivouacked during the days of the 18th, 19th, 20th, and 21st, and marched on the morning of the 22d to the confluence of Muddy Creek and Steele’s Bayou, at which point it was again embarked on board the steamer Silver Wave, on which the regiment proceeded up this bayou as far as Deer Creek, where it was disembarked on the evening of the 23d, and bivouacked at this place during the next night, being all this time occupied with fatigue and guard duty.
On the evening of the 24th, I received ordered to proceed with a disposable force of the regiment up Deer Creek, for the purpose of reconnoitering the force of the enemy reported to approach from Yazoo River. Companies D, F, and E were taken up by guard and picket duty in and around camp. Company H, under command of Captain Schultz, was sent the same evening on the right bank of Deer Creek, to protect Fore’s plantation, the cotton-gin houses of which had been set fire to. The remaining six companies of the Thirty-seventh Regiment were deployed by me in the night from the 24th to the 25th in the following order: Company B, as reserve, about 2 miles from camp; Company G, in advance to the exterior skirt of the woods, about 4 miles from camp, observing the next plantation; Company I, on the right flank in the woods, and Companies A, C, and K, hidden in the woods in rear of Company G.
The next morning a detachment of mounted rebels, variously estimated from 40 to75 men, approached the skirt of the woods occupied by Company G, and commenced skirmishing with the pickets of said company, soon withdrawing, however, and turning, for the greater part, to the woods on our right, where soon afterward they met the pickets of Company I, by Company C, under Major Hipp, ordering him to allow the enemy to come in the open field, where, in the mean while, I had hidden Companies A, K, and G, drawn up in line.
In this position I remained waiting during the whole forenoon and part of the afternoon of the 25th. As nothing more of the enemy was to be seen, I reported the facts to the general commanding brigade, and returned to camp by 5 o’clock in the afternoon. Company H, under command of Captain Schultz (30 men strong), which had been on detached service at Fore’s plantation, returned somewhat later to camp, having waded through the inundations on the left, threatened, as they say, in front, and believing themselves turned by superior forces of the enemy. On the morning of the 26th, the Thirty-seventh Regiment was embarked on board the gunboat Carondelet and first mortar Grope, and returned to camp in the night of the 27th at 12 o’clock.
The regiment had no losses in this expedition.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
E. SIBER,Capt. G. LOFLAND,
Colonel Thirty-seventh Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry.
A.A.A.G., 3d Brigade, 2d Division, 15th Army Corps.