15, "REBELS" a poem
By a Baltimorean
Rebels! 'tis a holy name!
The name our fathers bore
When battling in the cause of Right,
Against the tyrant in his might, In the dark days of yore.
Rebels! 'tis our family name!
Our father, Washington,
Was the arch-rebel in the fight,
And gave the name to us – a Right
Of father unto son.
Rebels! 'tis our given name!
Our mother, Liberty,
Received the title with her fame,
In days of grief, of fear and shame,
When at her breast were we.
Rebels! 'tis our sealed name,
A baptism of blood
The war – aye and the din of strife-
The fearful contest, life for life –
The mingled crimson flood.
Rebels! 'tis a patriotic name
In struggles it was given,
We bore it then when tyrants ravaged
And through their curses 'twas engraved,
On the dooms-day book of heaven.
Rebels! 'tis or fighting name!
For Peace rules o'er the land,
Until they speak of craven woe –
Until our Rights receive a blow,
From fore's of brother's hand.
Rebels! 'tis our dying name!
For although life is dear,
Yet freemen born and freemen bred,
We'd rather live as freemen dead,
Then to live in slavish fear.
Then call us rebels if you will –
We glory in the name;
For bending under unjust laws
And swearing faith to an unjust cause
We count a greater shame.
November 25, 1861
Memphis Appeal, December 15, 1861.
15, Federal report relative to Jefferson Davis' attendance at John H. Morgan's wedding and speech in Murfreesborough
NASHVILLE, TENN., December 15, 1862-1.10 p. m.
Reports of last evening fully confirmed. Jeff. Davis attended John H. Morgan's wedding last night: was serenaded, and made a speech, in which he said Lincoln's proclamation put black and white on an equality. Urged them to fight until death, and to hold Middle Tennessee at all hazards, until Grant could be whipped. Bragg ordered all Kentucky and Tennessee exiles conscripted. Buckner, Breckinridge, and Hanson protested and threatened to resign. Jeff. took the matter in hand.
Things will be ripe soon.
W. S. ROSECRANS, Maj.-Gen.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 20, pt. II, p. 179.
15, U. S. C. T. recruiting difficulties in Middle Tennessee
COLUMBIA, December 15, 1863.
Maj. Gen. G. H. THOMAS, Cmdg. Army of the Cumberland:
Permit me to make the following report: I started out last Friday, 11th instant, from Calliak's with 100 mounted men of the Eighteenth Missouri, Col. Miller's regiment, under order of Gen. Dodge, commanding Left Wing of Sixteenth Army Corps, to press able-bodied negroes [sic], horses, and mules, leaving one team to each family, the horses and mules to be turned over to Col. Miller, the negroes [sic] to be put in my regiment now forming at this place, and upon arriving here to-day after a five days' hard scout, Col. Mizner, commanding the post, without, any knowledge or consent of me, released 13 negroes [sic] and sent them back to their owners.
I ask, for information, what is to be done in this case?
THOS. J. DOWNEY, Col. Fifteenth U. S. Colored Troops.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 31, pt. III, pp. 414-415.
15, Situation report for Calhoun, Cleveland to Chattanooga line
HDQRS. SECOND BRIGADE, SECOND DIVISION CAVALRY, Near Calhoun, Tennessee, December 15, 1863.
ASSISTANT ADJUTANT-GEN., Division of the Mississippi, Chattanooga:
SIR: I have to report arrival with my command at Calhoun this p. m., receiving upon arrival orders from Maj.-Gen. Sherman to take post on the Hiwassee River, guarding the river and the railroad bridge which connects Calhoun with Charleston.
The Fifth Ohio Cavalry is attached temporarily to my brigade, and Capt. Howland's battalion, Third U. S. Cavalry, detached from it.
My orders require that I shall open by courier communication with Maj.-Gen. Grant at Chattanooga and with Brig.-Gen. Elliott, commanding First Cavalry Division, at Kingston or Loudon.
In accordance with these directions I have established with one regiment a courier-line from Calhoun to Loudon, and thence to Kingston, the officer stationed at the east end of this line to report to Gen. Elliott.
With a second regiment I have formed a line from Calhoun to Chattanooga via Cleveland and Harrison.
A third regiment is stationed at Columbus, on the Hiwassee River, to guard the crossing at that point and the fords above the town.
A fourth regiment, stationed immediately at Calhoun, guards the town and the bridge over the Hiwassee connecting with Charleston. My headquarters I have made on the Hiwassee, above and near the town of Calhoun, and have three regiments of the command encamped immediately about me.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ELI LONG, Col., Comdg. Second Brigade, Second Cavalry Division.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 31, pt. III, pp. 416-417.
15, Skirmish near Kingston and capture of Confederates
HDQRS., Kingston, December 15, 1863.
Company E of my old regiment that is now down at White's Creek informs me that a body of about 40 rebels made an attempt to cross the river near where they are stationed. They fired into the rebels and took about 14 of them prisoners. About 12 of them succeeded in crossing to the south bank of the Tennessee. They were armed with Colt revolvers and axes. The prisoners say that John Morgan was among those that crossed the river and made their escape.
R. K. BYRD, Col., Cmdg. Post.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 31, pt. III, pp. 418-419.
15, "Slaughtering and Sausage Making."
Yesterday we paid a visit to the slaughter house of Jenkins & Brother, and were agreeable surprised and delighted with our visit. The establishment is under the direction of Mr. Peter Craiger, who keeps it in superb order; among his assistants are Uncle Phil. Coleman, who has been butchering here for the last forty years, and Aunt Esther, who has dressed more tripe during the past thirty five years than would be required to carpet Davidson county. The most interesting operations to be witnessed here is the manufacture of sausages. Craiger puts in the machine the requisite amount of salt, pepper, sage, etc., and about 150 pounds of meat in lumps from half a pound to a pound; he puts the machine in motion, and in six minutes the meat is ready to be forced into its enclosure. This last operation is performed by hand, and yards of sausages are thrown out in a remarkably short space of time, to the astonishment of those inexperienced in such matters. A visit to this establishment is well worthy the time required.
Nashville Dispatch, December 16, 1864.
 The irony in this article is found in the fact that the 15th was the first day of the battle of Nashville, where another kind of slaughter was taking place. Also, it seems possible that the people of Nashville had more on their minds than Hood's army. Or, press censorship excluded reporting on the battle itself. The latter seems most likely, yet there is no record of a press censorship order found in the OR relative to the battle itself. Perhaps it was reported tongue in cheek.
James B. Jones, Jr.
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN 37214