Wednesday, December 11, 2013

12/11/2013 Tennessee Civil War Notes

11, Cow's hair and cotton

A New and Useful Article.

We published an editorial paragraph, a few weeks ago, stating that we had received a specimen of cotton and cow's hair spun together, and recommending the subject to the consideration of our readers. We have since received a specimen of cloth woven from this mixture. It is heavy and exceedingly strong—well calculated for warmth and wear—a very good substitute for wool, and, if lined, a good substitute for blankets. The article is manufactured by a lady of Wartrace, Tenn., and is suitable for military uniforms, &c. Indeed, we are informed that one company of Tennessee volunteers has already been uniformed with it.

The manufacture of this cotton and cow hair cloth is another evidence of what our people are doing in the way of aiding in the work of independence; and it gives us pleasure to notice these evidences. It is only necessary for manufacturers to be satisfied with "living prices," and to make their business known by a judicious and liberal system of advertising, to succeed in the various useful enterprises which they have inaugurated.

Daily Constitutionalist [AUGUSTA, GA], December 11, 1861



11, General Braxton Bragg's assurances to General Rosecrans that noncombatants' and p.o.w.'s rights will be protected

HDQRS. ARMY OF TENNESSEE, Murfreesborough, Tenn., December 11, 1862

Maj.-Gen. W. S. ROSECRANS, Cmdg. United States Forces, Nashville, Tenn.:

GEN.: In your letter of the 4th instant[1] you express your abhorrence of the system of harassing and arresting non-combatants. In a previous letter I have intimated my entire concurrence in these views, and nothing shall swerve me from the faithful observance of a policy which is dictated by every proper sentiment. I am credibly informed, however, that on the very day on which your communication was written, a number of citizens of Tennessee, charged only with political offenses or proclivities, were arrested and imprisoned in the penitentiary at Nashville. It is of little moment to me whether this was done by your immediate order or by your subordinates, from whose conduct you are responsible, and I hereby notify you that I shall enforce rigid and unyielding retaliation against the commissioned officers who fall into my hands until this violation of good faith shall be corrected, in deeds as well as words.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 20, pt. II, pp. 158-159.



11, "…oh my Dear parents you have a son buried beneath the sod of Tennessee but He rests in Jesus…." The letter of James Vascoy, 12th Indiana regiment, to his parents announcing the death of his brother Jacob[2]

Athens Tennessee

Dec….11th A.D. 1863

Dear Parents,

It is with a sad heart that I take my pencil in hand to let you know that Jacob is dead. You will doubtless think in strange of me not writing to you sooner as I suppose that you will hear of the Battle and probably of Jacobs death before this letter will reach you. But circumstances has been so it was impossible for me to send a letter. On the twenty the of last month we (the 15th A.C.)[3] crossed the river above Chatanooga and advanced on the enemy. driving them without much fighting until we drove them to Missionary ridge there we stoped for that day and early on the morning of the 25th we formed in line and advanced on them our Brigade on the extreme right of our Corps,. We marched in line of Battle about a mile when we came to a fence which was at the edge of the woods. and in range of the rebels batteries on the ridge then we was ordered to ly down. and we lay there a short time when the rebels make a charge on our right down the hill then we was ordered forward right out in an open field where they had 16 pieces of artilery firing on us and also was exposed to their riflemen. Jacob and I clumb the fence together and marched up side by side and after we had advanced about 900 yards there was a musket ball struck Jacob in the left Breast passing square through him. He fell by my side. I droped my gun and by the aid of another man. managed to get him back to a ditch which was close where he fell there he pitched into the ditch and the man that was helping me left me there and the ditch was so deep and narrow that I could not get him out and all I could do was to hold his head out of the water. there I remained 15 minutes the shot an shell tearing the ground up all around me and I could look and see the rebels charging one line after another, down the hill on our boys who were about 200 yards ahead of me and there oh, my God what were my feelings. there I lay my Dear Brother that I knew could not live long. and I did not know how soon our men would be repulsed and I would be forced to leave him die on the Battle field. I saw some men close by. I hollowed at them and they came and assisted me in getting him off of the field to where I got him in an ambulance and took him to a Hospital. I felt to thank God when I arrived at the Hospital. it was then night sundown I got some straw and laid him on. and after a long time I got a Surgeon to examine him and he told me that he must die. and it was about 15 minutes afterward that the lord released him from his sufferings He died at 10 oclock and was wounded at noon. from the time that he was wounded he suffered intencely But that God he died a Happy man. Shortly after he was wounded he told me. yet while he was on the field that he had to die I spoke to him about this soul and he did not seem at first to be satisfied to die but shortly the lord powerfully blessed him and he was enabled to shout although he suffered intencely. He took from his pocket a Testament and gave it to me and told me to read it and meet him in Glory. He also told me to tell his wife to train up his children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord and met him in Heaven. He then wanted to see Aaron and I sent for him But he did not come until a few minutes after his death. I thank God he has gone to Heaven oh my Dear parents you have a son buried beneath the sod of Tennessee but He rests in Jesus. and will rise at the last day to meet us in Glory if we but prove faithfull. The next morning Aaron and I Buried him. nicely to what all soldiers that fell there was although we had no coffin we dug a Vault and lined it with boards and then enscribed his named on the tree that we buried him under. and by this time the Regiment had passed and gone and I had to start in a hurrah to overtake them which I did that might We Drove the rebels down to Ringold Georgia where after a pretty hard fight they was completely routed and then we was ordered to reinforc Burnsides at Knoxville and we marched a far as Maryville which is 15 miles from Knoxville, where we heard that Burnside had routed Longstreet and we started back to Chatanooga to get supplies for we had been subsisting on the Country every since the fight and now we have to go back as far as this place which is about 50 miles from Chatanooga. and no rations yet  We are doing tolerably well. We are laying by today on account of the rebels burning a Bridge across the Hiwassie river. Well, my Dear parents I feel almost lost and without friend since the death of Jacob. but I hope that I shall be more faithfull now to my God and Country. Our Com. Lost 2 killed and 7 wounded the Reg lost about 100 killed and wounded it was an offal hard Battle as doubtless you have heard our Orderly sergeant was in the Battle of Shiloh and several other hard battles and he said that he never was in as hot a Battle as was this. I hope I shall never be called to witness another such Battle. I have not had an opportunity of sending mail since the fight and have not now but I will write this letter and as soon as we get to Chatanooga I will send it as I know you will be uneasy about me. I don't know what to do with Jacobs things he lost nearly all of them on the battle field and I did to. What few things is left I will sell and the money to his wife as soon as I can I will write a letter and as soon as pay day I will send all money coming to him. I will collect all that is coming to him and send it by mail or express. You can inform her of the affair and I will write her a letter the first opportunity I have. We had our Captain badly wounded, that I have not herd [sic] from him since the fight also another man of the company was seriously wounded in the left eye. Well father I will not write any more now and as soon as I can I will write a few more words and send this so no more at present.

[James Vascoy]

Vanscoy Correspondence[4]



11, 1864, Excerpts from the journal of Maggie Lindsley describing the Nashville environs in the shadow of Hood's army

Things grow monotonous – are they to remain thus all winter I wonder! Two large armies lying here at Nashville looking at each other, and doing nothing more valorous than destroying what is fleet of the once beautiful regions about them! Yesterday's paper states that the damage done in the last few days to property on the opposite side of the city amounts to between half a million to a million dollars – all those lovely homes on the Franklin pike, Mr. Putnam's-what merry times we girls have had in that dear old house!) – Mr. Berry's, Mr. Duncan's, etc. are utterly ruined I am told. Mrs. A. V. Brown's is Chatham's headquarters. The rebels are conscripting every man and boy in their lines. It is whispered that the Nichols have Harry and Mr. More secreted in their house altho' [sic] the rebels are constantly there, but as the older boys are officers, there is not much trouble in hiding these two I imagine!

No engagement yet, but cannonading from our forts all the while – no return from the enemy. We go to sleep to the cannon's roar, we awaken to it. Hood certainly is only "fooling" as the children say-he cannot mean to be the attacking party-why don't [sic] General Thomas attack him! It is said that General J.C. Brown was again wounded at Franklin.

*  *  *  *

We had quite an excitement this morning, occasioned by an order from General Wilson that our pasture across the lane should be taken as a mule corral, and accordingly a thousand mules, and their drivers came! Captain Osburne had about 30 guards here at the time – and ordered them to shoot at the gate the first man or mule that went in. After many threats, and much disorder the mules were driven back, tho [sic]' whether we are rid of them remains to be seen. Even the poor Negroes are being turned out of their homes everywhere by private soldiers. Such is General Wilson's discipline!

*  *  *  *

Journal of Maggie Lindsley.






[1] Not found.

[2] All spelling and punctuation original.

[3] Army Corps.

[4] As cited in "Merrill Proudfoot and Stanley J. Folmsbee, "Three Yankee Soldier Brothers in the Battle of  Chattanooga: Three Letters," East Tennessee Historical Society Publications, No. 35 (1963), 100-105. [Hereinafter cited as: Vanscoy Correspondence.]

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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