Thursday, December 27, 2012

December 27 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

    27, "SPECIAL ORDER NO. 1."

Clarksville, Dec. 27, 1861.

Captain Geo. D. Martin, Quartermaster C. S. A. 

Captain Sayers, the Engineer in charge of the Fortifications at this Post, requires the following number of negro laborers and carts, viz.: 360 men and 35 carts and mules, with a boy to each cart. -- Having used every other method to obtain them short of an actual purchase, I have been ordered by Major General Wm. Hardee, C. S. A., to press them into service, and you are hereby ordered to see this order carried out to the extent of the force and carts above indicated. The laborers are expected to bring their tools, such as picks, grubbing-hoes, shovels, spades, axes, &c.; and such bed clothing as may be necessary to make them comfortable. In executing this order, you will use great prudence and caution explaining the necessity of the case to the master of the slave, and assure him that his property shall be cared for. Take from each owner so as to leave enough for the comfort and convenience of the family. In cases where the owner have, heretofore, voluntarily sent their hands to work, you will not press [sic] them, but urge them to continue to do so. In a word, make the burthen as equal, fair and just as possible. Do not fail to assure the owner than his negroes  shall be well used and provided for, and when obtained, see that this is done; also assure each owner that he shall be paid for the services of his slaves.

In executing this order you will apply to Lieut.-Col. Norwood, of the 42d Reg. Tenn. Vols., for such military aid as you may require, and o­nly use force in cases of extreme necessity, or in actual self-defense [sic].


Your obedient servant,

Wm. A. Quarles, Col. Commanding Post

Clarksville Chronicle, January 10, 1862.


December 27, 1862 -  Substitute for Oil Silk

We commend the attention of our lady readers particularly to the following letter from Mrs. Butler, of Strawberry Plains.  We have no doubt her suggestions are good:
Strawberry Plains, Dec. 27, 1861

Mr. Sperry:  Please call the attention of the ladies of Knoxville and vicinity, who wish to furnish packages for the soldiers, to the fact that a substitute for oil silk, which Dr. Ramsey pronounces admirable, is easily prepared in the following manner:  After hogs are killed and the leaf fat has become perfectly cold, take the skin off, whole if possible; scrape them well, and wash in hot water with soap, until clear of grease.  If the water is too hot it will draw them up.  Stretch them well o­n a clean plank or table, until dry—trim off the uneven edges, and they are ready for use. 


Susan F. Butler.

Knoxville (Tenn.) Register, Dec. 28

Daily Constitutionalist [AUGUSTA, GA], January 1, 1862



27, Skirmish at La Vergne

Reports of Col. George P. Buell, Fifty-Eighth Indiana Infantry, commanding regiment and First Brigade, including skirmish at La Vergne, December 27


 December 28, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to report that preparatory to an advance upon the enemy in the town of La Vergne, Tenn., this regiment, in accordance with orders received, was, on the 27th instant, formed in line of battle on the right of the advance line of the Fifteenth Brigade, with Companies A and B in the advance as skirmishers, covering the front and right of the regiment.
When the line of skirmishers had advanced to within about 150 yards from the town, the enemy's skirmishers, supported by one piece of artillery, opened fire upon them, which was promptly and vigorously returned by our skirmishers, who were steadily advancing, closely followed by the regiment. The enemy, being protected by the houses of the village, for a short time seemed to check the advance of the two companies acting as skirmishers, when Company F was also advanced as skirmishers to their assistance, and the regiment ordered to charge bayonets, and thereupon the enemy made a hasty retreat. After pursuing the enemy for about the distance of 2 miles from the town, during the whole of which time a constant skirmish was going on, this regiment was relieved by the Third Kentucky Infantry and took its position in the second line of the brigade.

* * * *


GEO. P. BUELL, Col., Cmdg.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 20., pt. I, p.580.



December 27, 1863 – January 7, 1864

December 27, 1863- January 6, 1864, Anecdotes of a Tennessee cavalryman's life

On the 27th day of December, 1863, the 2d, 3d, and 4th Tennessee [U. S.] Cavalry regiments moved out from Nashville under Col. D. M. Ray. They were afterwards joined by the 5th Kentucky cavalry and 72nd Illinois mounted infantry. Passing through Hillsboro on the 28th, and on the 29th arrived at Duck River and bivouacked opposite Columbia. This was a damps, drizzly day until the afternoon, while the weather was rather warm for the season. In the afternoon Hugh C. Jeffries of Company A, and I went out to the country to get something to eat. Finding some sweet potatoes we bought a bag a full and started back to camps. We had gone without overcoats or blankets, and with thin bloused on, being quite comfortable, so far as the temperature was concerned. On our way back to camps the weather turned suddenly very cold, so much so that when we got to our place, throwing the bag of potatoes down, it felt like a chunk of ice, frozen stiff as a badger. We were almost in the same condition. The change was so sudden and the cold so intense it seemed almost impossible to keep from freezing through the night. Fences, boards, indeed, everything that would burn and give heat were rapidly consumed by the boys shivering, hovered around them. New Year, 1864, was so sold there was no stirring except for fuel. On the 2nd of January, late in the afternoon, the Third was miles on the Mount Pleasant pike. The pikes were covered with a thick layer of ices, so that it was very dangerous for the first company in marching on them. The horses were falling and tumbling in front almost all the way. But the first company cut the surface of the ice until it was not quite so bad for the others. January 3rd, we moved about five miles and stopped again. The weather continued extremely cold. On the 4th passed through Henryville. This again seemed to be the coldest weather we had ever marched in. Night came on at last. But, oh! What an uninviting night it was. Almost stiff with cold, the country nearly barren, but little hope to eat and nothing to feed our horses upon. At length we came near an iron foundry. The country nearly bare of vegetation – not even a shrub to hitch the horses to. Men and horses seemed to be sunk in gloom until it became comparatively a noisless [sic] march. Not a word was spoken – only the slow thudding of the horses' feet against the frozen ground could be heard. A halt was made, and every man stood still in his place. Everything was quiet as death, when A. M. Rule, of Company A, began singing in a clear, yet solemn voice, to the tune of Lilly Dale – 

"Oh, soldier, poor soldier, hungry and cold,
Therefore I'll return to my home far away,
So farewell to the brake and the bold."

Never did a thing come more appropriately; never was it more telling. It seems as if I can almost hear it yet. At length we stopped for the night. After so long a time some corn was found for the horses, but iron pigs were the hitching posts. To sleep on the frozen ground would only thaw it into mud, so some time was spent hunting for boards to sleep on. We existed [sic] the night and resumed the march next morning, passing through Waynesboro'. The weather continued to be cold.

On the 6th, we stopped at Savannah, on the Tennessee River. Alex. Kidd and the writer went out in search of food, but found none, save the house of a Federal soldier, whose family had barely enough to supply their wants, so as empty as ever we started for camps, but missing the road it was late when we got in, and so cold that the heat of a burning log heap could scarcely be felt for a long time.

On the 7th we crossed the river in the "Blue Bird," a little steamboat plying the river there. Here we took up the river, and on the 9th arrived at Corinth, Mississippi….

Knoxville Daily Chronicle, June 21, 1879.


December 26 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

26, Distribution and capacity of Tennessee's military in late December 1861, and a request for promotion to the Confederate War Department

NASHVILLE, TENN., December 26, 1861.


DEAR SIR: Since I wrote to you o­n yesterday Gen. Whitthorne, adjutant-general of the State has informed me that Tennessee has now fifty regiments of infantry in the field all duly organized, and that there are besides camp, or ordered to camp companies sufficient to form two regiments at Jackson, Tenn., two regiments at Camp Weakley, two regiments at Fort Donelson, o­ne regiment at Camp Trousdale, o­ne regiment at Knoxville o­ne regiment at Columbus, Ky., making fifty-nine regiments of infantry from Tennessee. Gen. Whitthorne assures me that he will be able to report to the State Legislature when it reconvenes after Christmas holidays that Tennessee has sixty regiments of infantry in the field, besides twelve battalions of cavalry and two regiments of artillery. I may be permitted to say familiarly to you that I should be pleased, if the general could find it consistent with his duties in view of these facts, to recommend my immediate appointment by the War Department to the place for which I have already asked his recommendation. It seems the Department will wait till he indicates the necessity.

Yours, truly, B. R. JOHNSON.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 52, pt. II, p. 245.



26-January 5, 1863, Stones River or Murfreesborough Campaign

DECEMBER 26, 1862--JANUARY 5, 1863.--The Stone's River or Murfreesborough, Tenn., Campaign.

December 26, 1862.--Skirmish at Franklin, Tenn.
26.--Skirmish at Nolensville, Tenn.
26.--Skirmish at Knob Gap, Tenn.
26-27, 1862.--Skirmish at La Vergne, Tenn.
27.-Skirmish on the Jefferson Pike, at Stewart's
27.-Creek Bridge, Tenn., 
27.-Skirmish at Triune, Tenn.
27.-Skirmish at Franklin, Tenn.
27.-Skirmish on the Murfreesborough pike, at
27.-Stewart's Creek Bridge, Tenn.
29.-Skirmish at Lizzard's, between Triune and
Murfreesborough, Tenn.
29.-Skirmish at Wilkinson's Cross-Roads, Tenn.(a.k.a "Wilkerson's)
29-30.--Skirmishes near Murfreesborough, Tenn.
30.-Skirmish at Jefferson, Tenn.
30.-Skirmish at La Vergne, Tenn.
30.-Skirmish at Rock Spring, Tenn.
30.-Skirmish at Nolensville, Tenn.
31.-Skirmish at Overall's Creek, Tenn.
31--January 3, 1863.-Battle of Stone's River, or Murfreesborough, Tenn.
January 1, 1863.--Skirmishes at Stewart's Creek and La Vergne, Tenn.
3.--Skirmish at the Insane Asylum, or Cox's Hill, Tenn. (a.k.a. "Blood's Hill")
4.--Skirmish on the Manchester pike, Tenn.
4.--Skirmish at Murfreesborough, Tenn.
5.- Murfreesborough occupied by Union forces.
5.- Skirmish at Lytle's Creek, on the Manchester pike, Tenn.
5.- Skirmish on the Shelbyville pike, Tenn.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 20, pt. I, pp. 166-167.




26, "Interesting Event."

Some interesting ceremonies took place yesterday, at the Episcopal church, of which the Rev. Mr. Harlow is the "pastor." About one hundred and fifty children, members of the Sunday School, and fifteen teachers, met in the church yesterday afternoon for the purpose of receiving their Christmas presents. The church was handsomely decorated, a Christmas tree being in the center of the church, ornamented with flowers, ad illuminated with wax candles; Dr. Harlow addressed the children, and after signing a Christmas hymn and chorus, Mr. George Hazlewood, the Superintendent, called out the names and distributed the premiums, consisting of toys, book-marks, candies, etc., the eyes of the deal little ones sparkling with joy, and betraying a gratitude springing from their very hearts. Mrs. F. B. Fogg, one of the oldest and most useful members of the Sunday School, was present, and was highly delighted at what she witnessed; indeed she was almost a child again, for her charitable heart and the child-like simplicity of her nature, compelled her to participate and sympathize with the happy little ones. After the distribution premiums among the children, one was presented by them to their benefactress, Mrs. Fogg, which she received gratefully, and seemed much affected at being so kindly remembered by the little ones. Mrs. Crawford was also present. It was intended to give an illustration of the wonders of the Magic Lantern, but the teachers were disappointed, and were compelled to deter this until next Monday afternoon. In the conduct of the Sunday School attached to this church much praise is due to Mr. Hazlewood, who took the school in charge when only ten scholars were to be found, and now fifteen teachers and about 150 scholars may be considered an average attendance.

Nashville Dispatch, December 27, 1864.



December 26, 1864 Action at Sugar Creek 

No circumstantial reports filed.

Excerpt from the Report Bvt. Brigadier-General John H. Hammond, commanding First Brigade, 7th Division, U.S Army, on operations from December 15-27, 1864, relative to skirmish at Sugar Creek, December 26, 1864,
The next morning [26th], moving in pursuit at a rapid pace, the Second Tennessee, Lieut.-Col. Cook commanding, in advance, we drove the enemy out of his position five miles from Anthony's Hill, and pushed the rear guard back on the main body, posted in a strong position on the south bank of Sugar Creek. A spirited action followed, in which the Second Tennessee, supported by the Fourth, drove the enemy into his works. A charge was made in turn by two columns of infantry, with cavalry in the center, driving us back about 300 yards across the creek, where we rallied and drove them back to their works, holding the position until the afternoon, when the Fourteenth Ohio Battery shelled their rear guard out of log-work commanding the road, and pursuit was continued to this place.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 45, pt. I, p. 608.

Excerpt from the Report of Major-General Nathan Bedford Forrest on operations November 16, 1864-January 23, 1865.

* * * * 

On the morning of the 26th the enemy commenced advancing, driving back Gen. Ross' pickets. Owing to the dense fog he could not see the temporary fortifications which the infantry had thrown up and behind which they were secreted. The enemy therefore advanced to within fifty paces of these works, when a volley was opened upon him, causing the wildest confusion. Two mounted regiments of Ross' brigade and Ector's and Granbury's brigades of infantry were ordered to charge upon the discomfited foe, which was done, producing a complete rout. The enemy was pursued for two miles, but showing no disposition to give battle my troops were ordered back. In this engagement he sustained a loss of about 150 in killed and wounded; many prisoners and horses were captured and about 400 horses killed. I held this position for two hours, but the enemy showing no disposition to renew the attack, and fearing he might attempt a flank movement in the dense fog, I resumed the march, after leaving a picket with orders to remain until 4 o'clock. The enemy made no further attack between Sugar Creek and Tennessee River, which stream I crossed on the evening of the 27th of December. The infantry were ordered to report back to their respective corps, and I moved with my cavalry to Corinth.

The campaign was full of trial and suffering, but the troops under my command, both cavalry and infantry, submitted to every hardship with an uncomplaining patriotism; with a single exception, they behaved with commendable gallantry.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 45, pt. I, p. 758.


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

December 25 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

25, Skirmish Wilson Creek Pike , between Brentwood & Petersburg

These are two reports by Confederate and Union officers engaged in the same action. Sometimes the fighting was for less noble purposes than the defense of the homeland or the maintenance of the Union. In this case men fought and died on Christmas Day - for corn.

DECEMBER 25, 1862.--Skirmish on the Wilson Creek pike, between Brentwood and Petersburg, Tenn.


No. 1.--Col. P. Sidney Post, Fifty-ninth Illinois Infantry, commanding brigade.

No. 2.--Brig. Gen. John A. Wharton, C. S. Army, commanding cavalry brigade.

No. 1.

Report of Col. P. Sidney Post, Fifty-ninth Illinois Infantry, commanding brigade.


LIEUT.: I have the honor to report that, in obedience to orders from Brig.-Gen. Davis, commanding First Division, I started at daylight this morning, with the First Brigade, First Division, and the Fifteenth Regt. Wisconsin Infantry, from the Second Brigade, and the train, reported to me as consisting of more than 200 wagons. We proceeded to Brentwood, and from thence on the Wilson pike, near where we drove in the enemy's pickets. Two miles farther we came to a cross-road leading to Nolensville, on which the enemy were encamped about a mile distant, and at another point about 2 miles distant. The small cavalry force occupying the nearest camp abandoned it, and I stationed the Fifty-ninth Regt. Illinois Infantry and one section of the Fifth Wisconsin Battery in a position to command this road, and prevent the enemy from Nolensville, which was 5 miles distant, establishing themselves in our rear. I then proceeded 2 miles farther with the train, placing the Fifteenth Regt. Wisconsin Infantry and one section of the battery on the right, and commanding a road coming from Franklin, and the Twenty-second Regt. Indiana Infantry, the Seventy-fourth Regt. Illinois Infantry, and one section of the battery in front. Our advance was attended with considerable skirmishing. Two of the enemy were killed, and some wounded were seen being carried off. A few shells from Capt. Pinney's battery cooled the Confederate ardor until all the wagons were completely loaded. The wagons of the enemy were hurried out of the field without being loaded, though, I regret to say, their presence was not discerned in time to effect their capture. The captain of one of the skirmishers parties caused some neighborhood negroes to bury the enemy's dead, and we returned to camp without any mishap whatever.

I beg leave to observe in this report that foraging in such a country as this in our front, and so great a distance from camp, while the enemy are so near and from every hill-top estimate the number of the escort and the value of the train, is attended with considerable risk. Our train could not be made to move in a less space than 4 miles, and if it were not possible to throw a superior force in rear of foraging expeditions it would not be difficult to suddenly attack so long a train and destroy some portion of it, especially while threatening it in the rear, as they did much of the way in to-day, unless the escort were very large.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
P. SIDNEY POST, Col., Cmdg. Brigade.

No. 2.

Report of Brig. Gen. John A. Wharton, C. S. Army, commanding cavalry brigade.

HDQRS. WHARTON'S CAVALRY BRIGADE, Nolensville, Tenn., December 25, 1862-9.30 p.m.

GEN.: We have been fighting the enemy from sunrise until dark. The forage now lies to the left of this pike, in between this and Wilkerson pike. To-day the enemy came out in large force and a heavy supporting force. With what cavalry could be used without disturbing the pickets, we engaged the enemy. The country is very hilly and covered with cedar brakes, which renders it totally unfit for cavalry, and the infantry here has orders to risk nothing. I had 3 men wounded; killed 6 and wounded 14 of the enemy. They thus paid for their forage.
I cannot get the five companies to complete Smith's and Murray's regiments, though they have long been promised me. The service that I am required to perform here is too much for my force, and it will soon be unfit for service. Other cavalry commanders are drilling daily, and I assure you that every day for the past ten days I have engaged the enemy. My force in camp has to be moved forward every day to sustain the pickets, and never return until dark, so, whether on picket or off, they have no rest.

I ordered Col. Smith to leave a portion of his command at Franklin, and to move last night on a scout on the Hillsborough pike. The result of the expedition is not yet known.
I take great pride in this brigade, and do not intend that it shall be used up without advising you of it. I intend to write to Gen. Wheeler, and ask him to come over and see for himself the amount of labor I have to perform. The enemy were followed beyond our lines, and our pickets are at their usual, a day for us to fight and not to rest. I have nothing new as to the several movements of the enemy.

Most respectfully, general, your obedient servant,
JNO. A. WHARTON, Brig.-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol.20, pt. I, 163-165.

Monday, December 24, 2012

December 24 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

   24, Christmas Eve in Cleveland

….we went over to see Mr. Walcott (the wounded soldier), he is worse this eve. It looks so gloomy and cheerless over there, I have felt so sad ever since I was there. Oh, if he would o­nly get well….What a gloomy Xmas eve this, how unlike other Xmases [sic] I have passed. Will I ever enjoy myself as well again? Rhoda came in form Aunt' E's this eve to enjoy, no not enjoy, but pass Xmas. She is now reading our hero "Stonewall Jackson's Life" to Mother. [sic] R. and I fixed up a few ground nuts, walnut and hickory nuts for Stephney's stocking. Oh, so sad is our like at this time. If I could o­nly see into the future, but it does no good to record sad thoughts and gloomy scenes, so I will close my journal….The Yanks have reinforced, are looking for the "Rebs" tomorrow.

Diary of Myra Adelaide Inman, p. 223.




24, Skirmish at Nashville

No circumstantial reports filed. 

The only apparent mention of the skirmish, is in the report to the Adjutant General's Office concerning the mutiny of Anderson's Cavalry on December 26, 1862.

INSPECTOR-GEN.'S DEPARTMENT, Washington, D. C., February 4, 1863.

ADJUTANT-GEN. U. S. ARMY, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report as the result of my investigations relative to the Anderson Cavalry, covering and in addition to my report by telegraph from Nashville, Tenn., on the 27th ultimo, made pursuant to instructions from the Secretary of War, as per your letter to me of the 17th of January, 1863.

From Official documents, the reports of officers and enlisted men of the regiment, and from officers and other sources outside, the information obtained appears to establish in this case, in substance, the following facts:

* * * * 

The regiment arrived at Nashville December 24, 1862. On the next [December 25] day a foraging party was sent out, which had a skirmish with the enemy, in which 1 man was lost. That night there was considerable excitement, and complaints made that their officers were inexperienced and incompetent.

* * * * 

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 20, pt. I, pp. 345-346

Sunday, December 23, 2012

December 23 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

23, Advertisements seeking runaway slaves in the Murfreesboro Daily Rebel Banner

LOST. Between Chattanooga and Murfreesboro, my boy Henry, light color, seventeen years of age, and will weigh one hundred and fifteen pounds. I will pay a liberal reward for his delivery at the 20th Alabama regiment, Garner's Brigade, Whetherin's Division


RUNAWAY from the subscriber on Sunday the 16th of November, a negro [sic] boy called Carroll Neely, about twenty years of age, and one hundred seventy five pounds in weight. He is of a dark copper color; has on the left side of his face a mole, with a small bunch of hair attached. When he left he was dressed in a black frock coat and kersey pants. The above reward [will be paid for his return.] Any information concerning this boy can be addressed to me in the care of Gen. Jesse J. Wharton

Dr. J. W. Newly, Terry's Texas Rangers.

Murfreesboro Daily Rebel Banner, December 23, 1862.



23, "Our blankets is of a supereor quality I have slept with one of them over me in rain and keep perfectly dry they are yankey blankets." Letter of Captain Peter Marchant, 47th Tennessee Infantry, in Murfreesboro to Sousan Marchant 

Camp Murfreesboro

December 23, 1862

Dear Sousan,

amongest the many uncertiantys and changes I have found it convient to right you a few lines in the out sit I must say with devout grattitude to the giver of all good that I am in as good health as I ever was in my life(I) weigh 148 Lbs, that is 3 lbs more than I ever weighed befour. The helth of soldiers is very good. I have rote three letters to you since I left Tupalo, one from Georgetown Ky. another from Shelbyville Ky another from Tullahoma Tennessee. I do not know that eny of them ever reached you and therefore I am at a loss to know how to right. We are now in 30 miles of Nashvill, it is not beleaved that their will be eny fight. Their has been two divisions of the army sent to Mississippi from hear and I beleave the yankeys will leve nashvill without a fight. ….since we left [Kentucky] and come back to Tenn we have all got fat. We get a plenty of meal flour bacon beef and pork. Salt is scarce though we have enuf . We have had two snows, one on the 26 of Oct, we war at Knoxvill, the other on the 5th day of this month, with that exception we have had very plesant weather. We are now very well fixed, we have a brick chimney to our tent, the fier place is large enuf for size to stay by and do our cooking by, allso we have bed ticks that we fill with dry grass or leaves and plenty of blankets. Gooch and myself sleep to geather we have a bed and 5 blankets and my same old coveler that I brought from home. Our blankets is of a supereor quality I have slept with one of them over me in rain and keep perfectly dry they are yankey blankets.

Our regiment has bin consolated making only five companies, I will get the position of Second Lieut. as I rote you in my last litter I have plenty of clothes for this winter I only want a par of boots which I think I shall get in a fwe days. I have over two hundread dollars now and about 150 is dieu me. I wold send some home but I do not suppose it will pass in Dyer yet and it may be that I can use it to a good advantage. I am in good spirits, I beleave it will not be long befour times will be better. I hope you have the fortitude to bar your trials. I remember you in my prayers daly and nightly. I have the little testament that John gave me before I left home, it is my daly companion (I have now more confidence in a special providence that I ever had in my life, I veryly and fully beleave that all things shall work togeather for good to them that love and serve the lord.)[emphasis added.]We left George Thurmond at Koxvill [sic] at the hospital and I have not herd from him since, it is likely though that you have heard from him. I beleve I have riten all that I know wold intirest you, I hope it will not be long befour I shall have the pleasure of being at home with you and tell of my travels at leasure. Give my love to pa and mother. Tell them I wish to be remembered in their prayers (I have often thought of them and prayed that they might find grace in this time. Tell Sabelia and family howde for me and all hoo my wish to hear from me) Kiss the children for me and when I get an answer from you I will know better how to right

Very affectionalily yours (to Sousan Marchant)

Peter [M]archant 

Letters of Captain Peter Marchant, 47th Tennessee Infantry



23, Skirmish with guerrillas, Mulberry Village, Lincoln County* 

December 23, 1863.--Skirmish at Mulberry Village, Tenn.
Report of Col. Silas Colgrove, Twenty-seventh Indiana Infantry.

Tullahoma, December 26, 1863.

I have the honor to report that, on the 23d instant, I sent a forage train out into the neighborhood of Mulberry Village, Lincoln County. The train was accompanied by a guard of 70 men, under the command of First Lieut. Porter, Company A, Twenty-seventh Indiana Volunteers. Lieut. Porter was furnished with copiers of General Orders, No. 17, November 17, 1862, and General Orders, No. 30, December 30, 1862, Department of the Cumberland, and also Special Orders, No.__, of these headquarters, for instructions. At or near Mulberry Village, I am informed by Lieut. Porter, he divided his train into four detachments and sent the several detachments upon different plantations, sending an equal guard with each detachment. This, I understand, was done for the purpose of facilitating the loading of the train. It was about 7 o'clock in the evening when that portion of the train which Lieut. Porter was with finished loading and started to camp.
The lieutenant reports that while he was in house receipting for the forage a part of the train went ahead and went into camp, leaving three wagons in the rear. He started to camp with these three wagons, distance about 2 miles. He had with him 15 men as guard. When within one-half mile of camp he discovered that the foremost wagon had got about 300 yards ahead of the other two. He went forward for the purpose of halting it. When he rode up he found the wagon stopped. Two men immediately rode up to him and presented pistols at his head and demanded his surrender. With this wagon was the teamster and wagon-master of the Ninth Ohio Battery, and 2 men who had helped to load the wagons, all unarmed except Lieut. Porter. The guerrillas numbered but 4, and were armed. Lieut. Porter, the wagon-master, and 3 men were immediately mounted and taken through a gate, passing about 200 yards up a creek and then into a corn-field; from there they were hurried forward, avoiding roads, &c., until about 1 o'clock in the morning. They were halted on the bank of Elk River, about 1 mile below where the Mulberry [Creek] empties into it. A fire was built and their captors informed them that they were going to camp for the night.

Their hands were tied behind them; everything of value was taken from them. They were then drawn up in line 4 or 5 steps in front of their captors; one of them, who acted as leader, command "Ready"; the whole party immediately fired. One of the men was shot through the head and killed, as supposed, instantly; 3 were wounded. Lieut. Porter was not hit, and immediately broke and ran. He was followed and fired at by one of the party three times. He reports that he saw that he would be overtaken, and changed his course and ran to the river and threw himself over a precipice into the water. Having succeeded in getting his hands loose, he swam to the opposite shore; was fired at five or six times while he was the water. He secreted himself under the bank of the river.

His captors swam their horses across the and made search for him, but failed to find him. He afterward made his way up the river about three fourths of a mile and swam back again. He lay in the woods the remainder of the night and the next day. On the night of the 24th, he traveled about a mile and got to a house. The party sent out by me on yesterday brought him in. He is now lying in a critical condition owing to the exposure, cold, fatigue, &c.

He reports that he would know his captors should he see them again, one of whom is believed to be a man by the name of Tulley, living near Lynchburg; another a Bowne, who is a deserter from the rebel army and has been during the fall and winter with guerrillas. A third man rode a bay stallion and is known to the citizens of Mulberry; his name I have not yet learned. The men who were shot were immediately thrown into the river, one of whom was supposed to have been killed, and one from the nature of the wounds and his appearance after the body was recovered, is supposed to have been drowned. The hands of these two men were found tied behind them when taken out of the river; the other two men succeeded in losing their hands and got of the river, one of whom has died since; the hospital at this place; wound not considered necessarily mortal.

OR, Ser. I. Vol. 31. pt I, pp. 624 625.

GENERAL ORDERS, No. 6. HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE CUMBERLAND, Chattanooga, Tenn., January 6, 1864.

It having been reported to these headquarters that, between 7 and 8 o'clock on the evening of the 23d ultimo, within 1 1/2 miles of the village of Mulberry, Lincoln County, Tenn., a wagon which had become detached from a foraging train belonging to the United States was attacked by guerrillas, and the officer in command of the foraging party, First Lieut. Porter, Company A, Twenty-seventh Indiana Volunteers, the teamster, wagon-master, and two other soldiers who had been sent to load the train (the latter four unarmed), captured. They were immediately mounted and hurried off, the guerrillas avoiding the roads until their party was halted, about 1 o'clock in the morning, on the bank of Elk River, where the rebels stated they were going into camp for the night. The hands of the prisoners were then tied behind them, and they were robbed of everything of value about their persons. They were next drawn up in line, about 5 paces in front of their captors, and one of the latter, who acted as leader, commanded, "ready," and the whole party immediately fired upon them. One of the prisoners was shot through the head and killed instantly and three were wounded. Lieut. Porter was not hit. He immediately ran, was followed and fired upon three times by one of the party, and, finding that he was about to be overtaken, threw himself over a precipice into the river, and succeeding in getting his hands loose, swam to the opposite side, and, although pursued to that side and several times fired upon, he, after twenty-four hours of extraordinary exertions and great exposure, reached a house, whence he was taken to Tullahoma, where he now lies in critical situation. The others, after being shot, were immediately thrown into the river. Thus the murder of 3 men, Newell E. Orcutt, Ninth Independent Battery Ohio Volunteer Artillery; John W. Drought, Company H, Twenty-second Wisconsin Volunteers, and George W. Jacobs, Company D, Twenty-second Wisconsin Volunteers, was accomplished by shooting and drowning. The fourth, James W. Foley, Ninth Independent Battery Ohio Volunteer Artillery, is now lying in hospital, having escaped by getting his hands free while in the water.

For these atrocious and cold-blooded murders, equaling In savage ferocity any ever committed by the most barbarous tribes on the continent, committed by rebel citizens of Tennessee, It Is ordered that the property of all other rebel citizens living within a circuit of 10 miles of the place where these men were captured be assessed, each In his due proportion, according to his wealth, to make up the sum of $30,000, to be divided among the families who were dependent upon the murdered men for support, as follows:

Ten thousand dollars to be paid to the widow of John W. Drought, of North Cape, Racine County, Wis., for the support of herself and two children.

Ten thousand dollars to be paid to the widow of George W. Jacobs, of Delavan, Walworth County, Wis., for the support of herself and one child.

Ten thousand dollars to be divided between the aged mother and sister of Newell E. Orcutt, of Burton, Geauga County, Ohio.

Should the persons assessed fail, within one week after notice shall have been served upon them, to pay in the amount of their tax in money, sufficient of their personal property shall be seized and sold at public auction to make up the amount.

Maj. Gen. H. W. Slocum, U. S. Volunteers, commanding Twelfth Army Corps, is charged with the execution of this order.

The men who committed these murders, If caught, will be summarily executed, and any persons executing them will be held guiltless and will receive the protection of this army; and all persons who are suspected of having aided, abetted, or harbored these guerrillas will be immediately arrested and tried by military commission. 

By command of Maj.-Gen. Thomas:

WM. D. WHIPPLE, Assistant Adjutant-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. II, pp. 37-38.

TULLAHOMA, January 2, 1864--12.15 p.m.
Brig. Gen. W. D. WHIPPLE, Assistant Adjutant-Gen.:

The names, &c., of men murdered by guerrillas are Newell E. Orcutt, Ninth Independent Battery Ohio Volunteer Artillery; John W. Drought, Company H, Twenty-second Wisconsin Volunteers; George W. Jacobs, Company D, Twenty-second Wisconsin Volunteers. Wounded, James W. Foley, Ninth Independent Battery Ohio Volunteer Artillery. Guerrillas suspected are William Tully and Thomas or Jacob Brown; neither of these men can be found. John Tully a rich citizen, father of William Tully, Thomas Bailey, Philander Whittier, and Newton Whittier have been arrested and are in confinement for aiding and secreting guerrillas. George W. Richardson left here for the neighborhood of Tracy City before your dispatch was received.

H. W. SLOCUM, Maj.-Gen. of Volunteers Cmdg.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. II, pt. 12.

HDQRS. TWELFTH CORPS, Tullahoma, Tenn., February 16, 1864.


A. A. G., Chief of Staff, Hdqrs. Dept. of the Cumberland:
GEN.: Pursuant to instructions contained in General Orders, No. 6, headquarters Department of the Cumberland, I have caused to be collected within the district named the sum of $30,000, and have sent the amount to the families mentioned in said orders. I inclose a copy of the special order detailing Capt. Moseley to deliver the money to these families; also a copy of instructions given him. In order to render certain the collection of the full amount ordered, an assessment was made for a sum exceeding the amount, with the expectation that in many instances the officer to whom the duty was intrusted would fail in making collections. He was more successful, however, than I anticipated. This fact, together with the sale of some personal property [chiefly cotton] for a higher price than was anticipated, has brought into my hands the sum of $5,654.57 in excess of the amount ordered to be collected. A small portion of this sum, say $654.57 I desire to return to persons who should not have been assessed, some of whom have assisted in the collection of the amount and given valuable information. After returning to these men the amount paid by them, there will still remain in my hands the sum of $5,000.

It was my intention to have returned any excess of this nature, pro rata, but as the force sent to collect this amount was returning on Friday last, two soldiers about one-half mile in advance of the column were shot by guerrillas. They are both privates of the One hundred and fiftieth New York Volunteers, and both good soldiers. I would respectfully ask for authority to divide the balance now in my hands between the families of these men, and for authority to send the amount to them by Col. Ketcham.

Col. Ketcham is deserving of great credit for the manner in which he has discharged his duties in this matter, and is entitled to any favor that can consistently be granted him. He will present this letter in person and give you any information in connection with this matter that you may desire.

As soon as Capt. Moseley returns with receipts, I will send them to you, with any other vouchers that may be in my possession. I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

H. W. SLOCUM, Maj.-Gen., Cmdg.

[Inclosure No. 1.]

Tullahoma, Tenn., February 15, 1864.

* * * * 

Capt. W. W. Moseley, aide-de-camp, will proceed to North Cape, Racine County, and Delavan, Walworth County, Wis., and to Burton, Geauga County, Ohio, for the purpose of executing so much of Gen. Orders, No. 6, headquarters Department of the Cumberland, as relates to payment to certain families therein named the money collected for their benefit pursuant to said orders.

By command of Maj.-Gen. Slocum:

H. C. RODGERS, Assistant Adjutant-Gen.

[Inclosure No. 2.]

HDQRS. TWELFTH CORPS, Tullahoma, Tenn., February 15, 1864.

Capt. WILLIAM W. MOSELEY, Aide-de-Camp:

CAPT.: You have been detailed to convey to the families named in General Orders, No. 6, Department of the Cumberland, the money collected for their benefit pursuant to said order.

To avoid risk of loss you are advised to secure drafts payable in New York before leaving this department. The order contains instructions as to the parties to whom the money is to be paid. These instructions are based upon information furnished to the commanding general as to the families of the murdered men. Should this information, in either case, prove incorrect you will endeavor to carry out as nearly as possible the spirit of the order.

In each case you will do well to consult with one or more prominent and trustworthy citizens before delivering the money; and if necessary you will seek the advice and assistance of the judicial officers of the county or a judge of one of the higher courts. You will require triplicate receipts, which will be acknowledged before an officer authorized to take such acknowledgments.
If it should be necessary to pay any of the money to guardians or trustees, you will, before delivering it, require them to give sufficient surety for the faithful performance of their duties.

Should you fail to find either of the families, or for any reason be unable to carry out the spirit of the order, you will deposit the money, subject to your own order, and report the circumstances to these headquarters.
Yours, &c.,

H. W. SLOCUM, Maj.-Gen., Cmdg.

HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE CUMBERLAND, Chattanooga, February 16, 1864.

Maj. Gen. H. W. SLOCUM, Tullahoma:

I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of yesterday, with inclosure.

The major-general commanding directs me to express his gratification at the manner in which General Orders, No. 6, has been executed and concurs with you in commending Col. Ketcham for the manner in which he has discharged his portion of the duties connected with the matter. Your recommendation as to the disposition to be made of the $5,654.57 in excess is approved, and you are authorized to send Col. Ketcham to the State of New York with the $5,000, to be divided between the families of the 2 soldiers killed by guerrillas while returning collecting the tax imposed. The time of his absence will not exceed thirty days.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. D. WHIPPLE, Brig.-Gen. and Assista
nt Adjutant-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. II, pp. 405-407.

* Ed. note - Not all the fighting was of the colossal magnitude of the famous battles of Fort Donelson, Shiloh, Island No. 10, Memphis, Stones River, Chattanooga, Knoxville or Nashville. Smaller encounters lack the romantic allure of giant battles but indicate even more powerfully the dehumanizing brutality of war, as the following report on the skirmish at Mulberry Village strikingly depicts.

Friday, December 21, 2012

December 21 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

21, Excerpt from a letter by W. S. McDill to his father Robert McDill in Portersville (Porterville), relative to Jefferson Davis' visit at Murfreesboro, December 13, 1862

Murfreesboro, Tenn.

Dec. 21, 1862

Dear Father:

....Our army at this place was reviewed on Saturday 13th by Jeff. Davis himself. He was dressed in citizen's clothes and is a plain looking man....

WPA Civil War Records, Vol. 4, p. 125.



21, One Yankee's opinion of East Tennessee

A Yankee Opinion of Their Friends in East Tennessee--Among the letters captured by our forces around Knoxville was one from D. G. Griffin to his father in New York. The opinion expressed must be very flattering to the Unionists of East Tennessee:

Our Union friends have fanaticism and enthusiasm enough, but they are so ignorant and ill bred as to disgust any gentleman. The women know how to make "corn dodgers" and dirty little Federal flags, "ginger cakes and the like," and to curse and point out their superiors--rebel ladies and rebel gentlemen--and that is about all.

The rebel ladies are intelligent, well bred, and good looking--dignified and bold in their demeanor. But they won't talk to us--consider themselves our superiors, simply from the fact that we are fighting for their inferiors, the Union ladies. They are not to blame. I often blush when I think of the common herd that I am perilling [sic] my life for. God save me from such ignorant trash.

You have often heard of majorities for the Union in East Tennessee; but I must confess, taking into consideration, if the rebels are entitled to any country, it is this. Their friends are many, strong in their fidelity, and seem to have some plausible reasons for their rights, &c.

The name of tory seems to suit them very well. I don't wonder at the promotion of Gov. Johnson, Horace Maynard and others. Such a people can be easily demagogued. All they know is to be "Union folks." 

I can't think that we shall remain here very long, even the rebels permitting. The rebel Gen. Faughn and others are continually annoying us, so much so that we cannot see any peace for them. We didn't expect to fight the rebels when we came here, but find that our personal safety will force us to fight them hard and often. 

Charleston Mercury, December 21, 1863.[1]


[1] As cited in:



21, "A Night Ride Under Difficulties"

Lieutenant Wilkinson and Deputy Marshal Ingalls went in a hack, on Wednesday night [21st] , to hunt up Mat Williams, who was accused of stealing goods from the store of Piser & Co.. The team [of horses] was not of the best, and becoming tired, they determined to take a rest. The driver whipped and coaxed and cursed, but there was no go in them. At length Wilkinson mounted one horse, the driver the other, and Ingalls became the John [sic] and the trio exercised their power of eloquence upon the jaded nags until they reached Williamsons's residence. As soon as they entered a search was commenced. Ingal standing guard, while Wilkinson crawled under the bed to haul out a trunk. Billy pulled and tugged, and at length his body emereged from under the bedstead, when a heavy and hard substance came in contact with his cranium, and a volley of abuse from the tongue of Mrs. Williams reached his ears. Billy had been listening to the abuse heaped on the head of Ingalls but paid little attention to it until his ears were opened by the blow on his head, when he begged madame to consider the fact that the duty of searching was quite as disagreable to him as it was to her. Their labors, having been concluded after much tribulation, they retuned to town. Wilkinson having a bump upon his head, and Ingalls a volume of abuse on the brain, and the hack bearing a load stolen property.

Nashville Dispatch, December 23, 1864.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

December 20 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

20, "Pork."

This article, we have heard, has still an advancing tendency in our market. Ten dollars gross has been paid for some weeks past, but we saw it refused by o­ne of our farmers for hogs in the pen.

We are told that o­ne reason for the upward tendency (if not actual advance) is in Government agents bidding against each other. They are paid a commission o­n all they buy, and hence are anxious to buy all they can. Such competition should not exist, it is injurious both to private consumers and the Government.

Beef cattle are selling at 3 cents o­n foot...Glen & Carr are Government purchasing agents. F. M. Bruce & Co. Government packers.

Clarksville Chronicle, December 20, 1861.



20, "Death to the Women."

A bill was introduced in the Legislature, a few days ago, providing that a woman, of whatever station, degree or position, be she virgin, maid or widow, who shall here after entrap, inveigle or seduce into matrimony, any male subject of the Confederate States of America, and particularly of the State of Tennessee, by means of scents, paints, pomatum, rouge, lily-white, essence peppermint, balm of 1000 flowers, false hair, artificial teeth, Spanish wool, iron stays, low-neck dresses, high-heel shoes, or padded hips, shall be deemed of a misdemeanor and, on conviction, be fined $100, and be imprisoned at the discretion of the court trying the case.

Now wouldn't it create a flutteration among the women if that bill were to pass! But it didn't, ladies. You can go to taking the boys in.

Clarksville Chronicle, December 20, 1861.



20, Confederate impressment and thievery in Carroll county

Up to this time the Confederates have foraged off me to the amount of 16 barrels of corn and bread baked for 80 men and fed on me to the number of between 75 and 100 men and horses. I have not received one cent of pay from the Confederate authorities. The horse pressed of me Nov. 30 was sent back in about two weeks. The next day after being sent back, one Capt. Bray of Henderson county, Tenn., passed by and took the horse and left an old bay horse worth about $50. I will now put on record the conduct of six men, calling themselves Confederate soldiers. Their names as I have been able to learn them are as follows: Capt. White from about St. Joe, Mo., James Cribs, son of Rev. Cullen Cribs, Billy Cribs, son of widow Cribs; Brown Flippin, Giles Billew, son of Jo. Billew. These four are all of Gibson county, Tenn. Thomas Lewis of Carroll county, grandson of Annabella Dickson, a near neighbor. These six men came to my house in the night and tried to rob me of my fine gray horse Pete. They could not catch him. I out generaled them. Names of more of the desperate men are Harve Smith, son of Owen Smith of Skullbone. I have been told that there were one or two others by the names of Smith, all of Skullbone notoriety. Cal Lusk, son of Byrd Lusk, is no doubt one of the ring leasers of the gang. Old Byrd Lusk's is their stopping place in this neighborhood. James Smith, John Smith, Jack Hitchcock and Pat Mathis. Old Lem Stout's is one of their stopping places. Wils Baird, Jr., a friend and abettor is of old Jim Baird's family.

"Younger Diary."



20, A letter from Prospect, Giles County; excerpts from George Hovey Cadman's correspondence home

December 20, 1863


* * * *

 ….During the day an incident occurred which shows how many things hard to bear occur during war time. The top of the hill where we are building the Fort [sic] has been used by the inhabitants as a Grave Yard, of the course of the ditch takes necessarily disturbs many of the Graves [sic]. Las August a year ago a man was buried there by the name of Allen, close to the right of our Sally Port, and where the Grave would be covered by the extreme left of the Breastwork. While waiting there yesterday morning his widow cam to beg us to allow her to have her husbands [sic] body removed, so that she could have it buried in some place where it would not likely be disturbed, for she could not bear the thought of a fight taking place over her husbands [sic] grave. It seemed that when Allen died, she herself was sick and had not seen him either during illness or after death. The Colonel very kindly detailed 4 men to take the body up and then seized of my wagons to haul it off. I went with the Detail [sic] and helped rebury the poor fellow and shall forget the gratitude of the poor woman. She said she did not think the Yankees could be so kind. She took down all the names of the Squad who helped her, that she might pray for them, and promised me she would pray for me and my wife and children. So if a rebels prayers are any account I suppose I shall gain something by it. But best of [all] she got us a good dinner. We had Fried Sausage, Roast & Boiled Pork, Head cheese Peach Pies and Sweet milk and an invitation to go and see her whenever we could get leave. As I commanded the squad of course I came in for a double share of thanks and Invitations, but as she is 60 years old you need not get jealous with out you like.

Tomorrow we commence making the Fascines & I wish they would keep our Company at work at winter as it is more comfortable at work than standing Guard [sic]

Correspondence of George Hovey Cadman

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

December 19 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

 19, "Old political animosities and private grudges have been revived, and bad men among our friends are availing themselves of the opportunity afforded them by bringing Southern men to hunt down with the ferocity of bloodhounds all those against whom they entertain any feeling of dislike." Dissatisfaction with Confederate administration in East Tennessee

HDQRS. CARROLL'S BRIGADE, Knoxville, Tenn., December 19, 1861.

Hon. D. M. CURRIN, Richmond, Va.:

DEAR SIR: I regret to trouble you with this communication, but feel myself called upon to do so by a sense of duty both to the Confederate Government and to the people of East Tennessee. It might, perhaps, have been more properly done by some o­ne higher in authority than myself. At the instance, however, of a number of leading citizens, together with many officers of the Army, I have concluded to undertake the task of laying truthfully before some o­ne connected with the administration of the Government a fair and truthful statement of the present unhappy condition of affairs in this portion of the State, believing as I do that when laid properly before the heads of the Government it will induce a thorough and most salutary change in the policy now being pursued in reference to that deluded portion of our people who have heretofore been unfriendly to the present revolution.

There are some very important facts connected with the recent political history of East Tennessee which apparently have not yet come to the knowledge of the Government or have been entirely overlooked, while others of less importance have been greatly exaggerated. To these I beg to call your attention. In the beginning of the present contest between the North and South the attitude assumed by East Tennessee was a very doubtful o­ne, and it was deemed best by those fully acquainted with the temper and sentiment of the people to pursue a conciliatory policy towards them. Mr. Davis himself, I believe, adopted this view of the case, and for a time pursued the mild course thus indicated. The result was a very great change in the public mind touching questions at issue between the Northern and Southern Governments.

In September Maj.-Gen. Polk sent Gen. W. H. Carroll here for the purpose of endeavoring to bring the people over to the support of the Confederate Government and to enlist o­ne or more regiments for the Army. Gen. Carroll succeeded beyond his expectations, raising and organizing in a very short time a full regiment-coming, too, mostly from those counties where in June the heaviest vote had been polled against the separation of Tennessee from the Federal Government. Subsequently about thirty companies more have reported and joined his command from the same section, and composed principally of the same class of people; so that now we have in all nearly 10,000 [?] [sic] effective soldiers in the field that in June were almost unanimous in opposition to us. This gratifying result I am satisfied is attributable almost entirely to the liberal and conciliatory policy of which I have spoken; but notwithstanding this large accession to our Army, and the still greater number who had been converted from enemies into friends and allies, there were still left a few leading miscreants and a handful of ignorant and deluded followers, who were wicked enough for the commission of any crime, however detestable. By these, and these alone, were the bridges burned and other depredations committed, while the mass of the people were entirely ignorant of their designs and utterly opposed to any such wickedness and folly. The numbers engaged in these outrages have, I know, been greatly overestimated, as facts have been developed in the investigations that have been made by the court-martial now in session at this place, which satisfy me beyond doubt that there were not, at the time the bridges were burned, 500 men in all East Tennessee who knew anything of it, or who contemplated any organized opposition to the Government.

The excitement arising from this circumstance created more alarm among the Union men than among those who were loyal to the South, for they very justly supposed that it would be a signal for the advance of a large Southern army in their midst, and in the first paroxysm of fear which these apprehensions induced hundreds fled hastily from their homes, some taking refuge in the mountains and others going into Kentucky. Col.'s Leadbetter and Vance moved their commands into that portion of the State bordering o­n the Virginia and Kentucky line, while Gen. Carroll and Col. Wood moved from the west in the direction of Chattanooga and Knoxville. Scouting parties were sent out in every direction, who arrested hundreds suspected of disloyalty, and incarcerated them in prison, until almost every jail in the eastern end of the State was filled with poor, ignorant, and for the most part harmless men, who have been guilty of no crime save that of lending a too credulous ear to the corrupt demagogues whose counsels have led them astray. Among those thus captured were a number of bridge-burners. These latter were tried and promptly executed.

The rigorous measures adopted by the military commanders here struck still greater terror into those who had before been Union men, and to avoid arrest and, as they thought, subsequent punishment, concealed themselves, thus giving the semblance of guilt to actions innocent in fact, and entirely natural under the circumstances which surrounded them. About 400 of the poor victims of designing leaders have been sent to Tuscaloosa as prisoners of war, leaving in many instances their families in a helpless and destitute condition. The greatest distress prevails throughout the entire country in consequence of the various arrests that have been made, together with the facts that the horses and the other property of the parties that have been arrested have been seized by the soldiers, and in many cases appropriated to personal uses or wantonly destroyed.

Old political animosities and private grudges have been revived, and bad men among our friends are availing themselves of the opportunity afforded them by bringing Southern men to hunt down with the ferocity of bloodhounds all those against whom they entertain any feeling of dislike. The officers in command here have used every effort to restrain the soldiery from all acts of lawless violence. The scattered and distracted nature of the service in a great measure neutralizes their efforts. My position in the Army enables me to speak advisedly of these things, and I venture to say that if assurances of safety were given to those persons who have fled from their homes under apprehensions of danger they would return and be good and loyal citizens. The wretched condition of these unfortunate people appeals to the sympathy and commiseration of every humane man. When in Richmond a short time since I was present at an interview with the President, and feel assured that he has no disposition to exercise any unnecessary severity towards these deluded dupes. Those best acquainted with affairs here are fully impressed with the belief that if the proper course were pursued all East Tennessee could be united in support of the Confederate Government. Strong appeals have been made from all sections to Gen. Carroll to release those now in prison here and the return of those sent to Tuscaloosa; but, under the instructions from the Secretary of War, by which he is governed, he does not feel at liberty to do so. My first intention was to have addressed this letter to the Secretary of War, but o­n reflection concluded that a representation from you would have far more influence; besides, as I am an officer in the Army, it would perhaps not be proper for me to make any suggestions to Mr. Benjamin unless they should be called for.

Col. H. R. Austin visits Richmond for the purpose of impressing these views upon the President. Col. Landon C. Haynes will follow in a few days for the same purpose. These gentlemen can inform you more fully touching the subject of which I have written. I beg you to give them every assistance you can in bringing this important matter before the President and Secretary of War.

Respectfully, your friend,


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 7, pp. 777-779.



19, 1862 The 34th Illinois and a "Sham Battle" in camp near Nashville

Our Brigade was drilled from 8 to 11 a. m. We executed the movements of a sham Battle in connection with our Battery of Artillery and Ambulance Corps. We had everything but bullets and blood and certainly made a very imposing display which attracted many spectators from adjoining camps….

Diary of Lyman S. Widney 




19, Skirmish at Rutherford's Creek

No circumstantial reports filed.

Excerpt from the Report of Col. Datus E. Coon, Second Iowa Cavalry, commanding Second Brigade, of operations September 30, 1864--January 15, 1865, relative to the skirmish at Rutherford's Creek,, December 20, 1864.


* * * * 

....December 20, at daylight were again in motion down Rutherford's Creek. Marched nearly two miles, when I was ordered to dismount my command and construct a crossing from the fragment of a railroad bridge which the rebels had destroyed the day previous. This works was completed, and my command got across at 12 m., and the pursuit again resumed. The Seventh and Ninth Illinois were dismounted and deployed on foot, while the remainder of the brigade followed mounted to Duck River, opposite Columbia. On arriving here found the enemy had crossed his rear guard in comparative safety at 4 a. m., leaving a small party, with a piece of artillery, as rear guard in the town upon the opposite side. A light skirmish between the above-named regiments and the enemy, accompanied by light cannonading from both sides, closed the operations of the day, when the command encamped to await the arrival of the pontoons. During the skirmish the Seventh Illinois discovered where the enemy had abandoned four pieces of artillery by tumbling it into Duck River over the abutment of the old bridge. It was afterward taken out by the infantry.

* * * * 

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 45, pt. I, p. 593.



19, Engagement near Jackson

Report of Col. Adolph Engelmann, Forty-third Illinois Infantry, of engagement near Jackson, December 19, 1862.


SIR: I beg leave to report that on December 18, at 9 p. m., under orders of General Sullivan, I proceeded with the Forty-third and Sixty-first Regiments Illinois Volunteers from Jackson out on the Lexington road, with instructions to join and take command of all the United States Cavalry that I might find, and to feel the enemy. Only 3 1/2 miles out I came upon our cavalry, consisting of parts of the Eleventh Illinois, Fifth Ohio, and one company of the Second West Tennessee Regiment. One and a half miles farther out the camp-fires of the enemy could be seen burning cheerfully, while I deemed it prudent to prohibit the kindling of any fire by my command. The night was extremely cold, and I felt mortified at my men having to suffer from its inclemencies, while the enemy were resting by large and comfortable fires. I consulted with Lieutenant-Col. Dengler on the advisability of attacking the enemy by his camp-fires. But that officer suggested that night attacks, always hazardous, could only be attempted where the attacking parties are perfectly acquainted with the country. These suggestions being only too true, and myself and all of my officers and men being ignorant of the country, I had to abandon the project. On mature deliberation with Lieutenant-Colonel Meek, of the Eleventh Illinois; Major Ohr, of the Sixty-first, and Lieutenant-Colonel Dengler, of the Forty-third, it was considered most advisable to take position with the infantry half a mile back toward Jackson, in the outskirts of the timber, at Salem Cemetery. The Sixty-first was assigned to the left and the Forty-third to the right of the road. The Fifth Ohio Cavalry was posted on the extreme left, with instructions to send patrols to the Spring Creek road. One battalion of the Eleventh Illinois and the Second West Tennessee Cavalry were assigned to the right flank, with orders to send patrols to the old Lexington road, while the balance of the Eleventh was to show itself in the front and center, and, without exposing its men to any loss, should attempt to provoke the enemy to an attack, by means of which it might be got under the fire of the infantry. At daybreak the enemy advanced, with heavy columns of cavalry on either flank, in advance of the main body in the road. Our cavalry retired slowly before the enemy, and took position...on the western bluff of the branch passing through the Brooks farm. It was the intention of Major Funke, commanding this portion of the Eleventh Illinois, to await the enemy in this position, give it an effective volley from the carbines of his men, and then fall back to...where he could again rally his men, under the cover of the ridge, near the center of the open fields, between the Brooks farm and Salem Cemetery, where he proposed giving them a second fire. The enemy, however, very leisurely reconnoitered the position of our cavalry, rarely exposing itself to a long-range shot from our carbines and only firing occasional rifle-shots at us, with the evident intention of provoking our fire, the better to be able to ascertain our position. Having succeeded to his satisfaction, the enemy brought batteries into position, from one-fourth to one-third of a mile, to both sides of the road, on the high ground opposite our cavalry, and opened a well-directed cross-fire upon it. The position...became untenable and Major Funke fell back....It was, however, not long before the enemy's artillery also got range of this position, and his cavalry showing itself at the same time...our own again fell back, partly to the left of our lines and partly to the center, where it exhibited itself to the enemy, while the infantry was well concealed. The enemy's artillery now changed position, some occupying the road in front of Brook's house; another piece was planted on the high ground to the north and on this side of the branch, while on piece still occupied the rise beyond and to the south. The latter piece continued its fire with but little intermission, while the other pieces, as soon as they attained their new position, opened a well-directed fire toward our center and flanks, where portions of our cavalry were in view. At this time information was received that a large body of the enemy's cavalry was passing at the distance of a mile to the south around my right flank. A messenger was dispatched to General Sullivan, requesting that some troops might be sent to oppose the enemy on my right flank and that others be sent to oppose the enemy on my right flank and that others be sent to my rear as a reserve. At this time the cavalry, both on my right and left flanks, weary from the hardships to which they had been exposed during the two preceding days, and now under fire from the enemy's batteries, fell back about 1 mile toward Jackson without having first obtained any orders from me to that effect. Soon a heavy column of the enemy advanced slowly down the road, over the high point...first at a trot walk, then at a trot, and then at full speed. With loud cheers they charged upon my center. As they approached they were received by a well-directed fire, some of the foremost horses falling and obstructing the road, those immediately behind came to a halt, while half a dozen riderless horses rushed madly through our lines. The enemy's cavalry farther to the rear still road forward and got jammed up with those in front. This solid body of the enemy afforded a splendid opportunity to the infantry. It was, however, but a moment, when the fence to the right and left was broken through, and empty horses and reeling riders could be seen rushing in headlong flight across the fields.
The enemy having now ascertained the position of the infantry immediately brought his artillery to bear, while demonstrations were made by his cavalry on both flanks, however keeping out of range of the rifles of the infantry. I now received repeated messages from Lieutenant-Colonel Meek that the enemy were passing flanks and about to surround me and urging me to fall back. I, however, considered the infantry quite able to maintain itself against the enemy's cavalry in its choice position at Salem Cemetery, hoping that the latter would again attempt our overthrow, and thus give us again an opportunity of punishing them for their daring. I, however, sent skirmishers our on the flanks and ordered two companies of the right wing of the Forty-third to take position several hundred yards to the rear, where they could overlook and command the bottom and bluffs of the small creek running between the cemetery and Jackson. After waiting in this manner for about half an hour, an the enemy making no attempt to come within range of our rifles, while its artillery commenced to tell among my men, I determined to fall back out of range of its shells. The Sixty-first was first called in and sent to the rear with instructions to take position in the timber, where General Brayman subsequently found them; the Forty-third following slowly, retiring in close column, doubled on the center, while falling back over the open fields so as to be able to meet, by forming columns against cavalry, any sudden attack the enemy might be tempted to make. That regiment was then also placed in the position where the general assumed command.

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The loss in the Sixty-first was 1 man killed and 3 wounded; in the Forty-third but 1 man was wounded so as to disqualify him for duty, and in the Eleventh Illinois 1 man and 2 horses were killed as they were falling back in the road toward Jackson beyond the creek, west of the cemetery, by shells that were fired from the cannon in the road at Brooks' and passed high over the heads of the infantry. The loss of the enemy must have been severe. According to the best information I can receive his loss was 60 killed and wounded and 3 taken prisoners, including 1 lieutenant. The latter were immediately sent to General Sullivan's headquarters.

For the better elucidation of the foregoing I beg leave to submit the annexed plat, kindly furnished me by Lieutenant-Colonel Dengler. I also beg leave to submit herewith the report made to me by Lieutenant-Colonel Dengler.

I have the honor to be, with high regard, your most obedient servant,

ADOLPH ENGELMANN, Colonel Forty-third Illinois.

Report of Lieut. Col. Adolph Dengler, Forty-third Illinois

Infantry of operations December 18-27, 1862, including engagement near Jackson, December 19, 1862.


COLONEL: I have the honor to lay before you a report of the operations of the Forty-third Regiment Illinois Volunteers while under my command, from December 18 to the 27th:

On the morning of December 18 I received orders from Brigadier-General Brayman to move the regiment immediately to the depot supplied with on day's rations. We left Bolivar at 11 a. m., arriving at Jackson at 3 p. m.

The same evening I received orders from you to advance on the Lexington road for about 5 miles, or to such a distance as should bring me in close communication with the Eleventh Illinois and Fifth Ohio Cavalry. I met them about 31/2 miles from Jackson and stationed along the road, a strong picket line about three-quarters of a mile in advance. That part of the Lexington road near which the engagement of December 19 took place runs through a plateau, bounded on either side by a ravine running parallel to each other. The road runs through the grave-yard called Salem Cemetery, from whence it takes a due easterly course. You ordered me to occupy a position near this bend of the road. I placed my second battalion on a gentle slope, the left wing of this battalion almost touching the road, facing east, while the first battalion occupied a more forward position on the right of the second, leaving about 100 yards between them. Skirmishers were detached from the first battalion and stationed to the right, in front of the same, along the edge of the wood, covered somewhat by a fence. Just in front of the line of skirmishers were a cotton-press and several small outhouses, beyond which the rebel line of skirmishers extended. The right wing of the Sixth-first Illinois held Salem Cemetery, somewhat in the rear of our second battalion, but from which position the road is completely controlled.

Early on the morning of December 19 you advanced with the cavalry, who were soon engaged in a lively skirmish with the enemy lasting about half and hour. The enemy had in the mean time brought their cannon in position and commenced on our cavalry, who immediately retreated within our lines. Now commenced a brisk firing between our skirmishers and those of the enemy, while the main body of the rebel cavalry was being massed just beyond the highest ridge over which the road runs. Slowly at last they came in view, advancing cautiously for the first 100 yards, then putting their horses in a brisk trot till within 150 yards of us, when amid deafening cheers they charged headlong down the road upon us. My men, however, had been cautioned to reserve their fire. I let the enemy advance till within 30 yards of us, when at my command the men poured in a deadly volley, causing great havoc among them. The enemy, terrified at such a destructive fire from an unknown quarter (for they had not suspected our presence, as we were well concealed), came to a momentary halt, which proved to be the cause of their destruction, for at this critical moment a well-directed fire from the Sixty-first and second battalions completed their confusion. In wild disorder they turned from the road to the right and left in the open fields, hurrying their shattered and broken ranks without the range of our guns. After a lapse of some fifteen minutes they commenced shelling the wood where we were stationed. The range of their guns was very exact, shells bursting all around us. I was then ordered by you to fall back 50 yards, in which position we were not better protected than in the former one. You had in the mean time received intelligence that large re-enforcements were being sent from Jackson and ordered me to fall back 1 mile and there await them. Your orders were executed in the promptest manner and best order, and after their re-enforcements arrived I again advanced with my regiment and that night encamped on the ground where the flight of the morning had taken place.

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The regiment sustained in this fight its old reputation for bravery so gallantly and nobly won on the bloody battle-fields of Shiloh and Pittsburg Landing.

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In conclusion, colonel, allow me to assure you of the high regard and confidence myself, officers, and men of this regiment feel toward you, and which have only been strengthened by the skill and valor you displayed in the engagement of December 19.
I am, colonel, with much respect,


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. I, pp. 555-560.