Battle of Pea
Report of Capt. Junius A. Jones, First Independent Battery Iowa Light Artillery.
CAMP NEAR ELKHORN TAVERN,
SIR: In accordance with my duty I beg leave to report that on the morning of the 7th instant I proceeded to your camp with my battery, and by your order sent Lieutenant David, with the first section, to the head of the column. Upon arriving at the Elkhorn Tavern, by order of Colonel Carr, commanding division, I sent Lieutenant Gambell, with the left section, some 200 yards farther north, on the Springfield road, to take position against the rebels, and proceeded on the road to the right and easterly from the tavern some 800 yards to take position against the same force. Just as I was ready to go into action the firing of the right section having ceased, and a messenger arriving telling me Lieutenant David had advanced, I limbered up and moved to join the left section, which commenced action as I reached the Elkhorn Tavern. I immediately joined Lieutenant Gambell and took position on his right and commenced on the rebel batteries forthwith. I found Lieutenant Gambell actively engaged, the rebel guns having him in perfect range of grape, shell, and shrapnel. The fire of the rebels was galling in the extreme. Just as I delivered my second round Reese Parkhurst, acting as No. 3, was killed, a cannon-ball taking off his left leg and a piece of rock striking him in his head. I then had the prolonges fixed to fire retiring when necessary. Shortly after this event one of my caissons was exploded by a shot from the rebels, and another was lost to me by a runaway team running into the caisson team, which took fright, and they in running away capsized it down a slope, breaking the pole and otherwise disabling it. The team escaped. Two of the horses were subsequently recovered by Lieutenant David, as was by him two of my ammunition-chests and contents. By this time the rebels' fire began to tell on my men. Kirk W. Henry was disabled by a piece of shell striking him in the mouth; Sergt. H. R. Horr was severely hurt by a spent round shot striking him in the groin; W. F. Conner was slightly wounded in the hand; D. J. Duvall was struck over the eye with a piece of shell, disabling him for a time; Thomas Brown was injured by a piece of shell, wounding him in the right side; LB. Nelson was wounded in the right hand and back; Clark Woodmansee was wounded in the right shoulder by a grazing ball; Samuel Black was wounded slightly in the ankle by a grazing solid shot; James Molesworth was disabled by a spent round shot striking him in the hip, and John Easton, detailed from Company --, Fourth Iowa, was wounded in the right arm slightly by a grape shot. After these casualties the limber of a second caisson was exploded by the rebels, burning severely E. Skivinki, the driver of the wheel team.
About this time Lieutenant Gambell was disabled by a grape shot passing through his left leg above the knee and between the bone and tendons. My ammunition becoming exhausted, I began to fire retiring. The second piece had nearly reached the road when I was hit by a spent round shot below the groin on the left leg, which compelled me to retire from the field, being unable to sit on my horse. When I left the scene of action the last piece was in the act of retiring. We were keeping up the fire, waiting to be relieved by the Dubuque battery. Lieutenant Williams kept the field with the last piece, and afterwards collected the left and center sections and drew them up in, battery in a field eastward and southward of the tavern, where they were afterwards joined by Lieutenant David with the right section, who, being the senior officer, took command.
After I retired Gustavis Gustavison, No. 3 of the piece remaining in action, had his right leg shot off by a solid shot, and William Selden, No. 6 of the same piece, was wounded severely in the ankles by a fragment of a shell. Gustavison has since died from the shock and amputation.
For the labors of the right section and the subsequent service of the battery I refer you to the report of Lieutenant David. I should have noted that to keep the ammunition of the capsized caisson from the rebels we exploded it.
In conclusion I am pleased to state that with the exception of Lieutenant Gambell and William Selden the wounded will be ready for duty in a short time.
JUNIUS A. JONES,
Captain First Iowa Battery.
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