great battle and contributed largely to the glorious victory.
The commanding General, Samuel R. Curtis, was an Iowa Congressman who had resigned his seat at the beginning of the war to enter the army. In this campaign and battle he had exhibited the rare qualities of an able and successful military commander. It is not too much to say that no General of the Union army won a victory against such superior numbers and no one fought a more difficult battle, requiring rare exercise of skill and resources to meet the sudden and unexpected emergencies of the battle-field. Colonels Vandever and Dodge, of Iowa, were in command of brigades. Colonel Dodge and Lieutenant-Colonel Galligan, who led the Fourth Iowa, were wounded; Lieutenant-Colonel Herron, who commanded the Ninth, was wounded, and Lieutenant-Colonel Trimble, who led a portion of the Third Iowa Cavalry in a desperate charge, was wounded. These three Iowa regiments and the brigades commanded by Dodge and Vandever were in the thickest of the two days’ battle, and none surpassed them in coolness, courage and stubborn fighting. The First and Third Iowa batteries also did excellent service.
“The Fourth and Ninth Iowa,” says General Curtis, “won imperishable honor,” and Colonels Dodge and Vandever are especially commended. Among the killed of the Ninth were Captains Drips and Bevins, and Lieutenant Rice, while Lieutenants Kelsey, Neff and Captain Towner were wounded, the army took up its march to Helena.
After burying the dead and caring for the wounded, the army took up its march to Helena. While in camp here, the Ninth Regiment was presented with a stand of beautiful silk colors by a committee of ladies, of Boston, in appreciation of its gallant conduct at Pea Ridge. In November Colonel Vandever was promoted to Brigadier-General. The Ninth was now assigned to Thayer’s Brigade of Steele’s Division, and joined Sherman’s army