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5 Series I Volume IV- Serial 4 - Operations in the South and West

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Page 5(Official Records Volume 4)


CHAP. XI.] SURRENDER AT SAN AUGUSTINE SPRINGS, N. MEX.

loss of the enemy is reported 11 killed and wounded. Part of their horses were stampeded by one of our shells.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

I. LYNDE, Major, Seventh Infantry, Commanding.

To the ACTING ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters Dept's New Mexico, Santa Fe, N. Mex.

FORT CRAIG, N. MEX., August 6, 1861.

SIR: I have the honor to report that I arrived at this post to-day with three companies of the regiment Mounted Rifles on parole. I shall send my official report as soon as I can complete it, which I have not yet been able to do. The express is waiting, and I have not time to write more.

Very respectfully, sir, your obedient servant,

I. LYNDE, Major, Seventh Infantry.

To the ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GENERAL, Headquarters Dept's New Mexico, Santa Fe, N. Mex.

FORT CRAIG, N. MEX., August 7, 1861.

SIR: On the 26th July I had the honor to report the fact of an unsuccessful attempt to dislodge the Texan troops from the town of Mesilla, since which events of the greatest consequence to my command have occurred. They are now prisoners of war.

On that day I had reliable information that the enemy would in the course of the night receive a battery of artillery, and if I moved to intercept it which a sufficient force for the purpose they were ready to attack the fort in my absence, and, as I have previously reported, the fort is indefensible against artillery, being perfectly commanded by sand hills for at least half the circle, and the only supply of water at the distance of one and a half miles. Other officers, with myself, became convinced that we must eventually be compelled to surrender if we remained in the fort, and that our only hope of saving the command form capture was in reaching some other military post. I therefore ordered the fort to be evacuated, and such public property as could not be transported with the limited means at the post to be destroyed as far as time would allow, and at 1 o'clock a. m. on 27th of July I took up the line of march for Fort Stanton, which was believed to be the most practicable point to reach,a nd was reported to be threatened by the enemy. I had no personal knowledge of the road, but it was reported to me that the first day's march would be 20 miles to Saint Augustine Springs, where there would be abundance of water for all the command.

Until daylight the command advanced without difficulty, but when the sun arose the day become intensely hot, and soon after the men and teams began to show signs of fatigue, and I found that the distance was greater than had been represented. About 6 miles before reaching the Springs commences a short ascent to a pass in the Organ Mountains,a nd here the men and teams suffered severely with the intense heat and want of water, many men falling and unable to proceed.

Up to this time there was no indication of pursuit. I now determined to push forward with the mounted force to the Springs, and return with

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