The enemy continued his fierce attacks, driving our men steadily in the darkness until near West Port (Kansas), where we camped in line of battle, after fighting for twelve miles in almost impenetrable darkness. The next morning, our wagon train had been ordered on the Fort Scott road; Cabell’s Brigade was guarding the train with Tyler’s small brigade in front. Fagan, with two of his Arkansas brigades, with Marmaduke and Shelby, attacked the enemy near West Port. I moved to the crossing of the Little Blue and started the train. A heavy column of the enemy under McNeil was on our left rear. I moved with my brigade between the train and this column and attacked them with a heavy line of skirmishers and drove them back at least one mile. In the meantime stragglers and unarmed men were coming in from the three divisions who were fighting near West Port. I ordered the train to move on rapidly and not to stop, and made every man fall into line on the right of my line as fast as they came up. The grass being very tall and the wind high and blowing toward the enemy, I concluded to set the grass on fire and to follow immediately behind the blaze with a line of skirmishers who were ordered to keep up a brisk fire through the flames. The fire leaping through the high grass directly towards the enemy resulted as I hoped, as it drove McNeil and his column back several miles. This enabled me to get my train and my own command so far that they could not overtake me. We encamped on a fork of Grand River. I had several men killed and wounded – not more than three killed – as skirmishers. The enemy’s loss was greater than mine, as my skirmishers counted ten dead on the prairie. On the 23rd we camped near the Marie de Cygne, after marching over twenty four miles. I was in the rear and the whole brigade in line of battle at the gap of the Bald Prairie hills and on top of the hills during the night. The enemy made several attempts to drive my men from the top of the mountains and break my lines. After making several attempts to break through, and failing in every instance, they retired about two o’clock October 24th. Being in the rear the previous day and in line of battle all night facing the enemy and fighting until two o’clock, Gen Marmaduke was ordered to relieve me with his division. He was in line of battle on the north side of the Marie de Cygne. He made an opening and I marched my command through and left him to bring up the rear. After marching in column of fours for about three or four miles, Gen Marmaduke sent a staff officer to tell me that the enemy was pressing him very hard, and that I must come to his relief. When nearing the creek, which had been completely blocked with broken down wagons, I went to Gen Marmaduke’s assistance as rapidly as I could, forming regiments into action as fast as I could in rear of Gen Marmaduke and also on his flank, firing as I came up. As fast as our lines were formed the enemy armed with Henry rifles (now Winchesters), forming in front of Marmaduke’s and Cabell’s Brigades, poured a rapid and scathing fire into our commands, which far exceeded any firing we could do from muzzle loading Enfield rifles. After firing on us with such rapidity, and as soon as they got into line, they charged our lines from right to left and drove them pell-mell for at least half a mile. I had but thirty men left of my brigade, and my artillery captured. The flag bearer of Gordon’s Arkansas Regiment stood up, at my command, and waved his regimental flag in defiance. I then told these thirty men to follow me, and we charged through the enemy’s lines and then scattered, hoping that we could cross the creek below, and by that means join our commands again. The enemy seemed to know our purpose and a small squad followed several of us, and no doubt captured a part of this little band. A lieutenant of the Seventh Missouri Cavalry, with three men, followed me. I attempted to jump the creek, which had high banks. In jumping my horse got his fore feet on the opposite bank, his hind feet yet in the creek, and fell over on me. I was soon up, and the lieutenant and three men demanded my surrender and told me to go to the rear (their rear). They pushed to the front, leaving me behind; but I went to the front also, hoping to get a horse from some of my men. In short time I got one and mounted him, and in company with ten or twelve men of Cabell’s Brigade we rode into a company of the Third Iowa Cavalry. Many shots were exchanged, and one of my men killed the horse one of their officers was riding. They then jerked me off my horse, and gave it to this officer, telling me to go to the rear. I went to the front again, and one of Dobbin’s Brigade came along, leading a little Choctaw pony. I had hard work to get him to let me have it. After getting it I fell in a squad with Col Gordon and went to the front as fast as we could go, and ran into the Third Iowa Cavalry drawn up in line of battle. They turned loose a perfect volley at us, and as my little pony could not run as fast as the large horses, and being in the rear, they shot her in several places, wounding her so badly that she squealed and would not move. One man came up and ordered me to surrender. I replied: “Stop shooting then.” He then stated that I had been captured before. Of course I denied the charge. One fellow suggested that they had better shoot me, or I would get away. The sergeant ordered one man to ride on each side of me and hold me by the collar. At that time, although I had on my uniform and stars on my collar, they did not know who I was. As it was raining, I had my overcoat buttoned around my neck, which hid my wreath and stars.
A deserter from one of my regiments had joined Phelps’ Arkansas Federal Regiment. When he saw I was a prisoner he came dashing up to me and said, “Old Tige, we have got you now, and I intend to kill you!” and raised his carbine and pointed it at me. Serg Young sprang between me and this deserted and covered him with his pistol and made him drop his gun and move on. He told him that if he looked cross eyed at me he would kill him; that they never wanted him or any of his class, as they were a disgrace to any command. Afterwards that class of men kept away from us. Had not Serg Young acted so promptly that cowardly scoundrel would have shot me. I have always had a great feeling of admiration and friendship for that dashing Federal sergeant. If I knew his address, I would write him. He was enlisted from Keokuk, I understood.
After finding out who their commanding general was, I told the sergeant who I was, with a promise that he was to take me to Gen Pleasanton, which he did. Pleasanton received me very kindly, and treated me well as long as I was with his command. He carried Marmaduke and myself to Fort Scott. Gen Rosecrans ordered us to be sent to him at once from Fort Scott under a heavy guard, as we both were being treated with great indignity, also that we were to be taken through Kansas and exhibited as an electioneering document. Gen Pleasanton at our request sent a telegram at once to Gen Rosecrans, who issued an order to send us to his headquarters, and treated us with great kindness. On October 24th my capture on the field of battle closed my military career and all connection with Fagan’s Division or Price’s raid. I was in hopes that the commander of the division would have made a report and caused the commander of each regiment to make a written report of what the command did. Justice to the brave men as well as officers of Cabell’s Brigade demanded that I make a report. But I never did. I was in prison and could not.