Report of Capt. Benjamin H. Myers, Eighty-third Indiana Infantry
HDQRS. EIGHTY-THIRD REGT. INDIANA VOLUNTEERSSIR: I beg leave to report that on the morning of the 17th instant, in obedience to orders, the Eighty-third Regiment Indiana Volunteers embarked on board the David Tatum, upward bound from this point. The regiment disembarked at Gwinís farm.
Camp, Youngís Point, La., March 28, 1863
On the following day, 19th instant, the regiment moved across the peninsula to Muddy Bayou, where they remained until the 20th instant, at which time we embarked on board the Silver Wave, and moved in the direction of Black Bayou, and then up the bayou to Hillís farm, where we disembarked. The regiment from that point marched on foot till we reached our advance (say 20 miles). Our arrival was certainly very timely, the enemy having our advance flanked and being immediately upon their rear.
Our demonstration was such that the enemy withdrew, and I received orders to retire, which I complied with, reaching the then headquarters of General Sherman, on Hillís farm, on the 24th instant.
On the 25th instant, we were ordered to take position on Foreís plantation. At this point and time Col. Benjamin J. Spooner joined the regiment and assumed command. I shall, however, at his request, conclude this report.
I immediately marched the regiment to the point indicated, where I met the enemy. I had taken the precaution before entering the woods dividing the Hill and Fore plantations to throw out Company A, Captain Chipman commanding, as skirmishers, with orders to skirmish the entire woods, which order Captain Chipman obeyed to the letter. When my line of skirmishers reached the cleared ground of Foreís plantation, they met the skirmishers of the enemy, and engaged them in a very brisk, and indulging the idea that a general engagement would follow, I ordered up to support my skirmishers Companies G, Lieutenant Hazen commanding, and K, Lieutenant Scott. The firing at this moment was rapid. I went in person to the front, and found the enemy in force in line of battle, preceded by at least one regiment as skirmishers. I lost, of Company G, 1 killed, to wit, William Lanthrop.
I then received orders to withdraw my whole force, save a small picket force. I withdrew the regiment, and on the morning following embarked on board the steamer Silver Wave, and arrived at camp at this point on the 27th instant.
I am happy to say that no casualty or accident happened my command, save the one mentioned in this report.
I cannot close this report without favorably mentioning the services rendered by Acting Adjutant Roertz, who was placed in command of the force engaged on the 25th instant. His gallantry is worthy of commendation. Indeed, all brought in contact with the enemy behaved with that gallantry which should distinguish the citizen soldier.
I have the honor to be, your obedient servant.
BEN H. MYERSCapt. G. MOODIE WHITE, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General
Captain, Comdg. Eighty-third Regiment Indiana Volunteers.