As Union troops retreated toward Tishomingo Creek, they faced not only a blocked bridge and a rain-swollen creek, but also deadly cannon fire coming from this ridge. Confederate artillerymen rained fire upon the scrambling Yankees with four field guns—two twelve-pounder howitzers and two three-inch rifles.
The Confederate artillery, led by Captain John W. Morton, played a significant role in this battle at multiple points. Their performance that day was all the more impressive because of the difficulty of maneuvering the guns and caissons through the woods and along primitive, muddy roads. The Confederate artillery continued to pursue and attack the routed Federals across Tishomingo Creek and through the swampy woods, even pushing the guns along by hand.
Each of the two guns in an artillery section was manned by seven soldiers with specific assignments that included swabbing the bore, inserting the ammunition and projectile, sighting (aiming) the gun, preparing the fuses, relaying ammunition from the ammunition chests on the limber and caissons, and pulling the lanyard to fire the weapon.
"The enemy got the range, and dropped shells there and among the wagons, parked on the east side of the creek, with such accuracy as to increase the disorder frightfully" —Captain William Forse Scott, 4th Iowa Cavalry