NEW MADRID, April 8.
The Union forces captured to-day 6,000 Confederate prisoners who were endeavoring to retreat from Island No. 10 and other rebel fortifications. Their generals and other officers were taken with them. Gen. McCowan [sic] was in command, assisted by Gens. Stewart, McCall, Groy and Gavett. Gen. Stewart was a classmate of Gen. Pope’s.
The rebel floating battery Pelican came drifting down the river last night. It was caught and towed into Point Pleasant, where it now lies. Some shots were fired into it from our batteries as it passed them under the impression that some ruse was attempted by the enemy in thus giving up an engine of war which was intended to accomplish marvelous results for them. No one was on board and no damage was done to the machine.
A gunboat also drifted down nearly to the upper fort where it sunk, and is now almost out of sight – the smokestacks and machinery only being visible.
The steamer Ohio Belle, which the rebels stole last summer and transferred to the Confederate service, was scuttled by them last night and set adrift. She was caught, however, and brought in shore here just as she was sinking. She has since been pumped out, and is now ready for use.
Gen. Pope returned to his headquarters to-night, having been absent since yesterday morning. He has not yet made public his plans for future operations. Their encampment will be broken up in a day or two. A heavy rain is falling to-night which in addition to previous storms makes our level camping ground too moist for comfort.
– Published in The Davenport Daily Gazette, Davenport, Iowa, Friday Morning, April 11, 1862, p. 2