General Orders No. 81 - C.T. Christensen, E. D. Townsend
HDQRS. MILITARY DIVISION OF WEST MISSISSIPPI
New Orleans, La, December 9, 1864
Subject to the approval of the President of the United States, Maj. J. B. Cook, Third U. S. Colored Cavalry, is hereby promoted to the lieutenant-colonelcy of that regiment to date from the 27th of November, 1864, in consideration of the gallantry displayed by him on that day, when, with his men dismounted and having nothing but railroad ties for a path, he charged over the Big Black bridge, near Cantos Miss, in the face of a heavy fire, drove off the rebel force stationed on the opposite shore behind a strong stockade, and destroyed the bridge, by which the main line of the rebel General Hood's communications with his depots in South Mississippi and Alabama were effectually cut off. The major-general commanding the Districts of West Tennessee and Vicksburg styles this affair as "one of the most daring and heroic acts of the war."
By order of Maj. Gen E. R. S. Canby:
C. T. CHRISTENSEN
Lieutenant-Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General
By order of the Secretary of War:
E. D. TOWNSEND
SOURCE: United States War Department. THE WAR OF THE REBELLION: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies. Series I. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1880-1901.