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Bygones of Monroe:

The Recent Skirmish of the Fourth Regiment

We make the following extract from a private letter from a member of Co. A. 4th Regiment, formerly in this office, describing the recent skirmish of the Regiment for which they were so much praised.  The letter says:

            “Saturday, May 25th, our regiment, accompanied by two Co’s of Cavalry, went out to reconnoiter, in the vicinity of New Bridge.  We kept under cover of the woods until we got near the river, and then the first platoon of Co. A. under Capt. Rose, waded across up to their waist.  Lieut. Armstrong Custer, formerly of Monroe, crossed with them.  The first platoon deployed as skirmishers and proceeded down the river.  The second platoon was held as reserve under Lieutenant Brown, and followed down the river opposite the first platoon.  We had not proceeded far when the first platoon discovered the rebels, and opened fire on them.  Then the second platoon double quicked down to the bridge, and commenced firing across the river, pouring a cross fire on the rebels.  In this way our Company drove four Companies back, and held them there until the remainder of the Regiment came up and crossed the river.  The fight lasted two hours.  There were only eight companies engaged on our side, and the rebels had one brigade.  We left one hundred and seven dead rebels on the field, and took about forty prisoners, wounded and all.  Among the dead was one Colonel, one Captain and three Lieutenants.  The rebels engaged were Louisiana troops, among the best in the rebel service.  Not a man in our Regiment flinched, but seemed to consider it as rare sport.  We had one man killed belonging to Company B.  Another died of his wounds the same night.  They were both buried last Sunday.  Company A. was very fortunate, only had one man wounded, Charles Brunner.  He was wounded in the leg, only a flesh wound.  It was a wonder that there were not more of us wounded or killed, as Company A. was under fire half an hour before the other companies came up; but the bullets whistled close enough.  The cavalry did not do anything.  Lieut. Custer deserves praise for his coolness and bravery.  It will do his friends in Monroe good to hear that he is already making his mark so soon after graduating.  It rained hard all the time we were in the skirmish.”

(Monroe Commercial, June 12, 1862, Page 2, Column 4)

 

 

 


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