This letter is directed to Hullum and Mary Scott, Newton's parents.
July 6th.. 1863
I will Inform you with Pleasure that I am well at the Present & I Hope that when this Reaches you that it May find you all well I Had a light chill yesterday But I feel all O. K. to day
Ere this time I Suppose you Have the News of the Battle at Helena I will tell you that Gens Price Holmes and Marmaduke made a Dash at us on the Morning of the 4th.. Inst 5 Brigades of Infty & Considerably Cavalry When I a wake up the long Roll was Sounding & Every things to arms The Pickets was fighting and By Daylight our Forces were all in Positions our artillery all Ready & the Drove our Pickets in to the Rifle Pits where our men were & the the Fight was Most Sanguine & the massed there Force one the Center & that Confined the Fighting on the Bluffs
all this time our Hill Batterys ten or twelve Pieces in the Bottom & the Gun Boat Tyler with 8 or ten guns were throwing Shells Amongst them thick as Hail But they Filled up there Fallen Ranks with Fresh Troops & about 8 oclock they made a Charge on one of our Batterys first on the Rifle Pits they Carried the Rifle Pits & Come a Head on the Battery & took the Battery the Rebles was now in Fare view & our Artillery just mowed them & our Infty Had a Cross fire on them & they could not Stand it & Part of them Run for life But the most of them Surrendered I See them Comeing over our Rifle Pits & take our Battery But they had not time to Spike the Cannons for the Shells & Bullets were to Hot for them
We took 960 Prisners with 3 Cols & 3 or 4 other Field Oficers & Sent them up the River in 2 Hours after they were taken We Have Over 400 of there wounded Here in town I talked with Several of there wounded & they Said that Gen Holmes was Killed He was Chief Commander & Price next & then Marmeduke the 2nd.. Arks was on the Extreme left Supporting a Battery our Battery Done great Execution
We was not in Gun Shot of them But Could See them Fighting all the time & there Balls whistled all arround us & Amongst us one Ball wounded 2 Darkies in the Arm not Dangerous
I Have no time to give you any Detail now But will as Soon as I can
I was Over apart of the Battle Field yesterday & Indeed it was an Awfull Sight where the Charged on one of our Batterys I Stood & Counted 35 Dead Rebels in about 20 Paces Square But not Being verry well I did not go over But a Small Space of the Battle ground & I Counted 78 Dead Rebels & what little Space I was Over we Had Details out yesterday all Day Burrying there Dead an Officer Come to me this morning for a nother Detail to Bury more Dead today He Said that that they Had Burried about 400 of there Dead all Ready from Best Accounts they Have lost in Killed wounded & Prisners about 2000 & on Our Side we have lost in Killed wounded not Over one Hundred & we lost 4 or 5 Prisners of our Pickets
You will think that unresponsable to tell Such a one sided fight But wait for Official Reports the 36th.. Iowa was on the Extreme right & lost 3 Prisners & one Kiled on Picket. Co A lost none we Recd.. news this morning By 2 Boats that Vicksburg Surrendered on the 4th.. at ten Oclock Hurrah for Such Celebrations as at Vicksburg & Helena on 4th.. July 1863 we can whip ten to one of the Rebels. Here now you can See what we can Do Behind our works
I will write again as soon as I can & tell you all Huzza for the Old Flag of our Union
The last several lines were written around the periphery of all four pages. Those lines may not have been transcribed in the sequence in which Newton wrote them.
We Had one gunboat Here in the fight & now we Have 3 good ones So let them Come
I am sorrow to Inform you that Will Holmes is verry Sick in Hospital I see Him 2 days ago & not Heard from Him since, Case Critical Have Bin the Rifle Pits for the last 48 Hours
Capt Elder & 2nd.. Lieut are not Able for Duty Which throw all tasks on me & 1st.. Leiut
I have no Room for my Name But I will Scribble Down Here Old Dempsey Newton Scott
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