Friday, June 7, 2013

June 7, 2013 Tennessee Civil War Notes

7, Thirty-nine families apply for public assistance in Memphis
Volunteer's Families.—Esq. Richards has thirty-nine families filled out, and a large number partially complete. On receipt of the complete certificates any magistrate can show to Judge Pettit that they have received the necessary proof, and the applicant is entitled to assistance. The Judge grants the order for the money which the county tax collector pays. The Captains of the companies will report the men under their command each month, when the name of the head of a family that has once handed in the proper certificates appears upon that list his family will receive their pay. This system ensures against fraud and secures to the families of volunteers the offered aid.
Memphis Daily Appeal, June 7, 1861.

7, Fooling the Nashville Vigilance Committee
Good.-It is well known that the Vigilance Committee of Nashville are in the habit of overhauling the letters in the Nashville post-office to present anything from going abroad that might tend to thwart their machinations. Well, we got a letter yesterday from our brave friend John Lillyet of that city, with these words superscribed on the envelope with his initials; "Nothing inside worth the attention of the Committee. Please let it go forward by first mail, and it will come back in the Journal."
John Lillyet, we like you. We love you. We long to shake your gallant hand. Do you think we might venture to Nashville for that pleasure? Why not? Has Nashville ever had a truer, steadier, an honester friend than we have been?
Louisville Daily Journal, June 7, 1861. [1]

7, Capture of Jackson
JUNE 7, 1862.-Capture of Jackson, Tenn.
Report of Maj.-Gen. John A. McClernand, U. S. Army.
BETHEL, June 8, 1862.
The detachment from my command, consisting of the Thirtieth Illinois, Col. Dennis, Gen. Logan's division, and part of the Seventy-eighth Ohio, Col. Leggett, Gen. Wallace's division, seized Jackson yesterday at 3.15 o'clock p. m., putting a rebel force to flight, taking their dinner, a number of animals, and a quantity of commissary and quartermaster's stores. The detachment is also in possession of both depots and telegraph office.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 10, pt. I, p. 918.[2]

7, Skirmish at Readyville
JUNE 7, 1862.-Skirmish at Readyville, Tenn.
Report of Col. J. W. Starnes, Third Tennessee Cavalry [CS].
LOUDON, TENN., June 18, 1862.
CAPT.: I have the honor to report that about the 1st of this month I crossed the Cumberland Mountains with 300 men of my regiment, a section of Capt. Kain's battery of artillery, and 80 men under command of Maj. Estes. In accordance with arrangements made with Col.'s Adams and Davis, I moved from Hulbert's Cove to form a junction with them at or near Rutledge's, some 4 miles from Cowen's Depot. On arriving at the point designated I found the enemy passing up the mountain with a force of about 4,500 men, under command of Gen. Negley. Believing I could form a junction with Col.'s Adams and Davis at Jasper before the enemy could reach that point, I recrossed the mountain at night by way of Tracy City. On reaching Tracy City I learned the enemy were already in possession of Jasper, and my command would be entirely cut off from Chattanooga before I could possibly reach there. I determined to shape my course toward McMinnville, by way of Altamont, which I did.
On reaching a point some 6 or 8 miles from McMinnville I learned that a body of the enemy's cavalry were at that place. I immediately moved forward with Capt.'s Thompson's, McLemore's, and D. W. Alexander's companies, overtaking the enemy in Readyville, about 12 miles east of Murfreesborough, capturing 68, killing 8 of their number, and wounding others. I brought the prisoners to the Sparta road, where I thought it expedient to parole them. The party captured was composed of parts of Col. Wynkoop's Pennsylvania regiment, Fourth Kentucky, and about 14 of Andrew Johnson's body guard, under the command of Capt. Ulkhout. The greater portion of the men captured were greatly rejoiced at the idea of being paroled, getting home, and quitting a service with which they were disgusted.
I am gratified to report to the commanding general that during the expedition all the officers and men of my command performed their duty well, and, although arduous, without a murmur.
In making this report I would beg leave to bring to the notice of the commanding general Private Whitset, of Capt. McLemore's company, who acted on one occasion with great gallantry and skill in killing at one shot three of the enemy and a fourth man with the other barrel of his shot-gun.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. W. STARNES, Col., Cmdg. Third Tennessee Cavalry.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 10, pt. I, pp. 917-918.

Cavalry Skirmish.—A force of between six and eight hundred Confederate cavalry, during yesterday, came upon and surprised a detachment of Federal cavalry, 69 in number, at the little town of Readyville, twelve miles south of Murfreesboro, killing five outright, and making prisoners of all the others except six, who reached Murfreesboro in safety. The Confederates were a part of Colonel Starnes' command, the Federals a portion of a force which had been sent in pursuit. The surprise was complete, as the Federal cavalry were enjoying their morning meal at the time, totally ignorant of the whereabouts of the enemy. These facts were communicated to us last evening by a citizen of Readyville, who saw the bodies of the slain when brought into Murfreesboro. He is a man of truth, and the information is given as entirely reliable.
Nashville Dispatch, June 8, 1862

        7, "To me it is the most desolate feeling to be left behind with our Country in the hands of our enemies;" Mrs. Sarah Estes description of activities in Madison County
Almost a week has passed since I have taken up my pen to resume my journal. A week of intense excitement, our Army has fallen back into Miss. We cannot learn how far, about thirty miles we suppose.
The Cavalry were ordered to burn the cotton through this neighborhood or rather in the whole district. They have been busy for a week but there is still a great deal not burned.
Mr. S. was set on fire last night and the cotton seed is still burning. Two of the burners stayed with us last night. Reports had come that the Yankees were at Jackson, Somerville and all around us, and they expected to leave in the night, but by twelve o'clock these reports were disputed and they remained all night and today are busy burning cotton.
Last Wednesday morning [4th] Mr. Estes made another attempt to go to Memphis. He went to Jackson but the cars had finally been stopped on the road and he returned in the evening hoping to be able to get off on the other road.
I bundled up my baby and self and went with him to Jimmie's; the next morning in company with my brother we went to Jones depot, but returned again before dinner being unable to get off. The cars are stopped at every point and the rolling stock sent south. This morning my husband and brother left again on horseback, but while I was writing they returned, one of the horses showing signs of lameness and failing rapidly. Mr. Estes bought a horse giving two hundred dollars for her and has just left in rout [sic] for Memphis, expecting to stay at Aunt Nannie's tonight.
The Federals are certainly at Bolivar, but they had not reached Memphis yesterday morning and I hope that Mr. E. will get there and see Ma and our darling children once more before the Yankees reach them.
To me it is the most desolate feeling to be left behind with our Country in the hands of our enemies, away from my husband, out of reach of my children, the cars all stopped, and me left in the most helpless condition imaginable.
We can form no idea what our Gen. [Beauregard] intends to do, that they have forsaken for a while we feel quite sensibly.
We never dreamed of being cut off so secretely [sic] and suddenly, but we hope all things are for the best.
A friend has been with us this morning who was in Jackson [Tennessee] yesterday when the report came through that the enemy were in two miles of the place. He says the intense and wild excitement was amusing, the women and children running wild on the streets not knowing which way to turn for safety.
The citizens were all around saying they were determined to resist them, but I suppose they would have seen the madness of such an act before the enemy reached them.
The smoke rises thick from the burning cotton. The poor negroes [sic] think that it is hard to see their labor all thrown away and some of them asked if we would burn the wheat too. They cannot see the difference, poor ignorant mortals.
* * * *
One of the cotton burners came in and I lay down my pen to hear what he has to say. He is trying to find the two that were with us last night. They are trying to get together to go South. Cousin Y. R. came over this evening and gave a laughable description of the fears of the Denmark people. Many of them even hid their clothes expecting to be robbed of them. In most places the enemy has robbed persons of all their money and silver, but I presume dress goods would have little temptation for them. We have a friend in Dresden who was robbed of everything valuable they possessed. The girls were even made to give up their jewelry. Tis hard to be overrun by such a people, and I cannot feel yet that they will conquer us.
Estes' Diary, June 7, 1862

7, Sergeant Charles Alley, 5th Iowa Cavalry attends religious services for slaves in Clarksville [Montgomery County]
Today we reached Clarksville [from camp near Fort Donelson] after a rather dusty march of about 25 miles. The country improved a good deal as we advanced and was better settled and cultivated. Passed through a couple of villages, one named Indian Mound, I suppose it was built in a very deep hollow; but the mount was not in the village. There was a very large one just back of it, I would not venture to say it was raised by the Indians though. This was about 10 miles from Fort Donelson. Another was called Oak Woods, for a very good reason – oak woods all around it.
Providence was the name of a flourishing town about two miles from Clarksville.
Clarksville, a town of about 8000 inhabitants is a fine looking place. The site is high rolling but not bluffy [sic]. It has 10 or more churches. P.E.; M.E.; Presbyterian; Baptist; etc. I got leave from the captain to go up in town to go to church if there was any. Found on inquiry there was no service for "white folks" in the afternoon. But there was for "Niggers"[sic]. I concluded to go to the M.E. church as it was then (3 o'clock) open. The sermon by a white minister was from Isaiah 1-19-20. "If ye be willing and obedient ye shall eat of the good of the land. But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured by the sword for the mouth of the lord hath spoken of it." And there followed a thing – the speaker would probably call a sermon – that was enough to disgust any man. He told the congregation that the land meant Heaven. That they must not look to eat of the good things of the earth; they were not for them. That God required them to be obedient to their masters and if they were treated all their days even with the oppression and violence they must not think to resist but must be patient looking to God to reward them. What Angels the fellow would have the slaves to be, he a rebel against the just laws of his country. After I left the church I found patrols were being placed in every street and that orders had been given to arrest every man of the 5th Iowa found in the town with a pass but the guards would not arrest us.
* * * *
Alley Diary
7, Nashville, according to the New York Tribune.
A Picture of Nashville.
The army correspondent of the New York Tribune seems to have visited Nashville recently, and the picture he draws of the place would set off the pages of Vanity Faire admirably. We make the following extract, that our city readers may see how Nashville looks through the columns of the New York Tribune:
Fully one third of the old inhabitants--mostly representatives of the wealthier class--are in voluntary or compulsory exile in the loyal or rebellious States. The high costs and scarcity of every requisite of physical life renders the existence of the remaining population precarious….A more profound humiliation of the disloyal citizens than that imposed by the order referred to could not well be devised. All of them, rich and poor, old and young, male and female, were mercilessly required to report and be sworn before the Provost marshal in person. The sensations of the purse and blood-proud Southrons of both sexes, particularly of the venomously hostile women, while whiling sometimes for hours in the promiscuous crowds gathered during the day at the Provost headquarters and while going through the form of swearing, may well be imagined....Many of the families whose male heads and supports are identified with the rebellion, have been reduced to want, owing to the prohibition of all intercourse with the South. Even those who were but last year in affluent circumstances are now upon the verge of complete destitution, and dependent upon the charity of neighbors.
Nashville Dispatch, June 7, 1863.[3]

7, "Amanda let me assure you that this place bears the marks of battle." Letter of Jacob W. Bartmess,[4] Co. C., 39th Indiana, in Murfreesboro, to his wife
Camp Drake.
Near Murfreesboro Ten.
Sunday-June 7th. 1863
My kind affectionate Wife---.
Amanda let me assure you that this place bears the marks of battle. Where once stood the nice dwelling of the rich planter and the negro huts, and the good fencing which enclosed the large rich farm and separated it into fields. Now is a vast ruin. there [sic] are no houses, no negro huts, no fencing. One vast desolation exists for many miles around. The trees are wonderfly [sic] marked with minie-balls. Some of them from the thickness of my body down are entirely cut down with canon balls. But what is more: the many little boards which stick in the ground in regular rotation, marking the spot where lies the boddies [sic] of hundreds of our brave men. who [sic] fell a sacrifice on their countries, altar on stoneriver's [sic] bloody field. My thoughts ask me where are the many little orphans calling and crying for pappy, while his body is mouldering [sic] in this vast grave yard. And where is that widowed, and heartbroken wife, who when the question is forced on her mind where is my husband? and [sic] the answer come that he fell and was burried [sic] by careless hands on stonerivers [sic] battle field. Writhes in desperate and indescribable anguish. O, who will answer for the sin of this most dreadful and calamitous war. But why should I continue this. God bless the right.
From your son,

7, The Knoxville Register's war correspondent's report from Middle Tennessee
Army Correspondence of the Knoxville Register.
War Trace [sic], Tenn., June 7, 1863.
Dear Register:- Since my letter, dated Chattanooga, June 2d, your correspondent has "wended his way," and all of a sudden, finds himself at this remarkable front-the popular resort of "reliable gentlemen" from the "oppressors of every land," and the wholesale and retail manufactory of "News, rumors and other items," and the fighting district of Gen. Bragg.
From the fact that I have been here a very short time, I can know but little of the contemplated operations of our army, or the arrangements of the enemy. It does not require, however, more than a glance at the arrangements of our works, and the dispositions of troops to satisfy the most critical that a master hand has been at work, and that "our house is in order," and that when Rosencranz moves upon Bragg, he will not find him knapping.
It is reported this morning that the enemy are advancing cautiously and from the activity among our own troops, it is generally credited. That the prospect of an early engagement is probable, is generally conceded.
The troops here are in fine health and spirits, and are eagerly waiting an opportunity to emulate the deeds of their brothers at Vicksburg and on the Rappahannock. I never saw men in better fighting condition, or more cheerful under hardships. Be assured that the gallant Tennesseeans who compose the major part of this army, will make a death stand[6] before the will yield their homes to the vandal's tread, and nobly aided by the brave legions from Georgia and Alabama, they cannot be conquered in so holy a cause by the satraps and cut throats of Lincolndom, whose only incentive to deeds of daring, is pelf and plunder.
This is Sunday, and it would surprise you to see with what unanimity it is observed throughout this army. What a change since I was last here. Then the principal brigade and division review were all had on the Sabbath and hundreds of other unnecessary things were don that might have been better done some other day. Now, all these are dispensed with, and no kind of labor is done on this holy day, and it is regarded as a day of rest, here as elsewhere.
In my last, I mentioned that the 37th Tennessee Regiment was ordered to the front. It has arrived and has been assigned to Brig. Gen. Bates's brigade, Hardee's corps.
Brig Gen.. Stewart, of Cheatham's division, has been promoted to Major General, and will command a new division now being formed.-He is a gallant and dashing officer, and is an honor to the Volunteer State. His division will form a part of Hardee's corps.
As I close this, my ears are greeted by the rumbling sounds of artillery, on the left, probably a skirmish between our outposts and the enemy's.
I will try and keep you posted as far as possible, from this quarter hereafter.
Macon Daily Telegraph, June 15, 1863.

7, "How Much Lower?"
We have had to chronicle many a case of downright dishonesty and theft, but never in the course of our journalistic career have we put before the public the quintessence of meanness which we are called upon not to expose. According to late military orders, owners of dogs were compelled to put muzzles upon their canine pets, and all dogs found running the streets without the same would be shot by the Provost Guard, whose duty it was to execute the order. The order in many cases has been complied with and so now we hear complaints almost every hour in the day made by parties who have had the muzzles stolen off their dogs. The wretch [who would] remove the safeguard of poor old [Fido?] after having been placed there by his master, should himself be muzzled, and allowed to walk the streets in no other way.
Memphis Bulletin, June 7, 1864.

7, Nimrod Porter's dream
I dreamed a dream last night & another the night before, I think unfavorable to the South. Something verry [sic] [strange] a going on, I saw father and mother, Grandmother & 2 little boys in my sleep last night. [T]hey [were] in my room very cordially I was glad to see them. (What is the interpretation) [sic]
Diary of Nimrod Porter, June 7, 1864

7, Comments pertaining to post-war Memphis
A gentleman who has recently visited the cities of St. Louis, Memphis, New Orleans, Mobile and Montgomery, called upon us yesterday and gave us a very interesting statement of his observations….
~ ~ ~
In the "Bluff City," he remarked a great change from what he witnessed a short time prior to its occupation a great change from what he witnessed a short time prior to its occupation by the Federal forces. The magnificent store rooms and warehouses of the city filled with goods and wares, the streets crowded with drays, and the landing lined with steamers. Since the breaking up of the Confederate armies, thousands of paroled officers and soldiers have arrived and passed through Memphis, en route for Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, and West Tennessee. Here they managed to clothe themselves anew, either by their own means or through the aid of friends, and went on their way to rejoicing. Goods were very low, and merchants were compelled to make sacrifices. The cotton speculators also lost heavily, in consequence of the sudden decline of the staple when hostilities ceased. The same state of affairs exited in New Orleans, to a great extend; and both cities present at present no appearance whatever of having been affected by the ravages of war.
~ ~ ~
Macon Daily Telegraph, June 7, 1865.

[1] As cited in PQCW.

[2] This is all the OR has to offer in relation to the successful attack upon and occupation of Jackson by Federal forces.

[3] As cited in:

[4] Letters from Jacob W. Bartmess, who was captured at Murfreesboro in 1862 and exchanged and returned during the Tullahoma Campaign of 1863.

The following letters were written by Jacob W. Bartmess, Co. C., 39th Indiana. After being captured at Murfreesboro in 1862, Bartmess was exchanged and returned to this area during the Tullahoma Campaign of 1863.

These letters were made available by Ms. Beth Bryant of Tullahoma, a Bartmess descendent.

These letters appeared in The Indiana Magazine of History in 1956. They are reproduced here by permission of the current (1998) editor.


[6] Not so. BraGALEGROUP - TSLA 19TH CN  's entire army was to be chased out of Tennessee by "Rosencranz" in a matter of weeks.

James B. Jones, Jr.
Public Historian
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN  37214
(615)-532-1550  x115
(615)-532-1549  FAX

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