28, Skirmish near Humboldt
JULY 28, 1862.--Skirmish near Humboldt, Tenn.
Reports of Brig. Gen. Grenville M. Dodge, U. S. Army.
HDQRS., Trenton, Tenn., July 28, 1862.
The attack was made early this morning about 8 miles south of Humboldt on two companies of my cavalry. They attacked in front and rear, and I have no doubt but our cavalry behaved badly, scattered and ran. Bryant immediately made preparation for them, and is now pushing through to connect with the Jackson forces. There is no doubt of there being a large body of the enemy south of the Hatchie, and that these attacks are made by parties from that force. They took Brownsville two or three days ago and are destroying immense quantities of cotton. I am posted on all their movements so far, but I cannot get a satisfactory account of the strength of the band north of the Hatchie. All my cavalry are under Bryant, and have gone with instructions to open the road to Jackson at all hazards. Loss this morning 10.
G. M. DODGE, Brig.-Gen.
HDQRS. CENTRAL DIVISION OF THE MISSISSIPPI, Trenton, Tenn., July 29, 1862.
CAPT.: I have the honor to submit the following report of the movements of troops in my division for the past few days:
After the attack on my forces near Humboldt and their dispersion of the enemy I ascertained that a force had been sent from Jackson to attack the enemy near Ripley, Lauderdale County; also that a force of the enemy was threatening Bolivar. I ordered Col. Bryant to take all the cavalry, with a force of infantry, to follow up the enemy's forces north of the Hatchie River and toward Brownsville, at the same time starting a force from here toward Dyersburg.
Last night Col. Bryant encamped in rear of the enemy's forces at Poplar Corners and is still following them. I trust, in connection with the Jackson forces, he will cut off their retreat across the Hatchie and thereby bag them. The enemy's forces are on the increase both north and south of the Hatchie. Those north I believe I shall be able to attend to, but they are so slippery and dodge through such small holes that they may evade me.
As I have taken charge of the bridge south of Humboldt I shall endeavor to so guard it that no small band of the enemy can take or destroy it. I have in process of erection there a strong block-house, which when finished will add greatly to the strength of the position. The bridge burned I have had rebuilt, and one hour after we obtained possession of the road had telegraphic communication south.
I must say that the strain upon my health and nerves lately has not added much to the state of my health, though I have full faith I shall weather it and get through safe. I would be glad to visit Columbus, as the general suggests, but it is not best just at this time.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
G. M. DODGE, Brig.-Gen.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. I, pp. 26-27.
28, "Tennessee Colored Men in the Regular Army."
Tennessee has furnished five hundred recruits for the colored regiments of the regular army during the past six months. About three hundred of these were enrolled for the 41st Infantry, by Lieut. L. Johnson, who closed his recruiting office in this city yesterday, having been ordered to Detroit, Michigan. The 41st is now full, and there will be no more recruiting of colored troops here.
Nashville Union and Dispatch, July 28, 1864.
28, "Need of Vigilance."
The frequency of conflagrations, of late, among Government steamboats, warehouses, provision and forage depots, all of vast importance to the welfare and sustenance of our armies, admonish us forcibly of the need of greatly increased watchfulness in guarding such property from the approach of incendiaries. It is highly probable that there is an organization of incendiaries, in the interest of the rebel Government, extending along the Ohio and Mississippi rivers and in all the cities of the North where there are government depots of supplies or manufactories for the army, whose object is to use the torch in any way that will cripple and retard the operations of our armies. There are thousands of rebels from the South roaming at large over the Northern States, and scores of desperadoes who would readily attempt to burn down a shop, factory, or steamboat in the service of the Government for fifty dollars. The rebels could make no use of their money so damaging to us, as to employ a force of incendiaries to destroy Government vessels and work-shops, and it is quite reasonable to believe that they are aware of the fact. IF a good steamboat can be destroyed, or a locomotive and car shop, or any army wagon shop, or a depot filled with corn and hay for cavalry, artillery, and transportation horses, or any establishment of equal value and importance connected with military operations, can be burned, delaying the movements or our troops and robbing the Government of millions of dollars, the achievement is a God-send to the rebels. We think therefore that no time should be lost in placing a strong and thorough guard at every place where there is reason to apprehend the application of the torch. Incendiarism would be a tremendous weapon in the hands of desperate men, and the Government should watch out for their movements.
Nashville Daily Times and True Union, July 28, 1864.