Monday, June 30, 2014

6.30.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        30, Escape from Memphis and Military Intelligence about the City and West Tennessee
Interesting from Memphis. Strength of the Military Forces in West Tennessee.
[From the Indianapolis Journal, June 22]
We had yesterday the pleasure of an interview with Mr. John M. Collins, son of the well known Methodist clergyman Rev. John A. Collins, of Baltimore, who has just escaped from the Memphis jail after a confinement of two months, for the [crime] of loving his country and adhering to his allegiance. In regard to his own case, we learn that Union sentiments led to his [arrest and confinement] [several lines of print illegible] He escaped by means we which we cannot publish without compromising persons still in Tennessee, and after hiding in the city for a day or two, made his way past the guards, got to Jackson, Tennessee, thence to Union City, a rendezvous of Tennessee troops, thence to Columbus, Kentucky, and from that point walked to Cairo, getting neither food nor sleep from the time of leaving Memphis. In regard to the troops in Tennessee, and their conditions, we learn some interesting facts. He says there is [illegible] danger of an attack on Cairo. The rebels are [illegible] for their own safety to venture so far away from home. At Memphis there were very few or no troops except for the Home Guards, and the only guns were  three of four 24 pounders mounted in a [illegible] original way, by resting the [artillery] on two heavy piles driven in  the ground, and fastening them there by [illegible] driven over the trunions into the piles. The neat arrangement, allowing no room for its recoil is likely to smash things when the firing begins. But though Memphis was almost entirely stripped of troops, there were very large forces in the vicinity, and in the way of an advance upon it. The estimate is that there are 8,120 men at Union City, near the Kentucky lie, 6,000 at Randolph, 15,000 at Germantown, and 11,000 at Corinth, Mississippi [illegible] comprising the whole available force of the southwest. He passed all through and carefully examined the camp at Union City, saw all the arms, and ascertained accurately the condition of the men there, and he says of the 8,120, only about 2,000 are armed, and they are armed only with flintlock muskets altered to percussion locks. And this very inefficient armament, he says, is the prevailing one among the Southern forces he has seen. The Southern leaders and papers purposely misrepresent the character of the arms in the hands of their men and as an instance he states that it was reported "that fifty cases of rifled muskets of the very best pattern had arrived at Union City and were being distributed: yet these claims arrived on the same train he did and he saw them opened. Every one contained altered flint lock muskets. There were only four guns at Union [City]. In addition to his own examination he learned from the conversation of some of the military leaders that the troops were ill armed, and ill led as well. On the same train with him from Jackson to Union [City] were Generals Sneed, Cheatham, Andrews and Clark, whose conversation among themselves he frequently overheard. They railed bitterly at the stupidity and imbecility of Pillow, who don't [sic] seem to have improved since his Mexican war experience, and they all talked in a corresponding tone of the ill condition and feeling of their men. None had been paid, few had been properly clothed, still fewer properly armed, and many were discontented. General Clark in response to a question by Mr. Collins, who was of course strongly  "Secesh" for that trip only, stated that the South had excellent material for an army, but the lack of arms, clothing and suitable provisions had greatly demoralized the men, and many were seriously discontented. Provisions in Memphis, Mr. C says, are much dearer than they appear to be by the market reports in the papers, Flour is ten cents a pound, and is largely sold in ten pound sacks at a dollar to poor people. Bacon of almost any kind is twenty five cents a pound to [illegible]. The destitution and suffering of the poorer  citizens is very great, and constantly increasing. The abuse of Union men, he says, is terrible,  far exceeding anything reported in the papers, for many cases are disposed of and never reported. He can count up fifty men within is own knowledge who have been made [away?] with in some way or another, and thinks that there are fifty more in confinement who will never be heard of. His experience has been a hard one, and in hearing it we could appreciate the joy which he first saw the Stats and Stripes at Cairo, after his long walk of twenty miles, without rest and food, from Columbus.
The Memphis Appeal says the Mayor of Memphis is about to form a company of men for the protection of the city, to be called the Chickasaw Pikemen. For this company sixty-four formidable Irish pikes have already been made. They are ten feet in length, and at the buts there is a spike. The pike resembles a bayonet in size and appearances, and at the point where it joins the staff a hooked blade projects. The pike will cut with a thrust, the hook with a pull. On the approach of cavalry the butts are set on the ground and the pikes presented to the enemy. The city proper is about to be put in trim for welcoming uninvited visitors to stay "till Gabriel blows his horn." The bluff is to be protected by breastworks of cotton. Yesterday the bluff between Court and Adams  streets was thus lined with bales. Each of the streets in the city, with the exception of Madison and Jefferson, is to be thus barricaded. With breastworks on the bluff and breast works in the streets Memphis will be in war trim.
The Memphis Argus boasts that Tennessee has received in all-Enfield, Minie and Maynard rifles-155,347 stands of arms, which is more than enough to arm the State. It adds:-The last lot of powder received from New Orleans is more than sufficient to supply Randolph, Fort Harris and the other batteries for a long period, and yet leave sufficient for 55,000 soldiers for two months, at least and this irrespective of the quantities received two and three weeks before.
New York Herald, June 30, 1861. [1]

        30, Skirmish at Morning Sun [a.k.a. Rising Sun[2]]
JUNE 30, 1862.-Skirmish at Rising Sun, Tenn.
No. 1.-Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, U. S. Army, commanding District of West Tennessee.
No. 2.-Col. William Mungen, Fifth-seventh Ohio Infantry.
No. 1.
Report of Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, U. S. Army, commanding District of West Tennessee.
MEMPHIS, July 1, 1862.
My particular anxiety has been to get cavalry to capture and drive off Jackson's, Forrest's, and Jeff. Thompson's bands, that are depredating so much. The only danger I fear is of a raid being made into the City and burning a part of it. Breckinridge is said to be southeast of here, but I do not know this to be so and do not credit his being nearer than Abbeville.
The wagon train sent in by Gen. Sherman was attacked yesterday afternoon at Rising Sun. A stampede among the mules ensued, and eight of the wagons were broken to pieces and the mules ran into the woods and were not recovered. The rebels were whipped off, with a loss of 13 killed and wounded picket up on the field, and 12 wounded men reported to have been carried to a neighboring house, but were not seen by our men. Loss on our side 3 wounded and 8 teamsters and a wagon-master missing. I telegraphed this to Gen. Sherman on the statement of a wagon-master who came through. His statement only differs from the colonel's commanding the escort in not knowing much about the rebel loss.
I have detained at the river a regiment of Wallace's division intended to re-enforce Col. Fitch, expecting an answer to my telegram of last evening.
U. S. GRANT, Maj.-Gen.
Report of Col. William Mungen, Fifty-seventh Ohio Infantry.
HDQRS. FIFTY-SEVENTH Regt. [sic] OHIO VOL. INFANTRY, Moscow, Tenn., July 5, 1862.
GEN.: I have the honor to report that, in obedience to orders from headquarters, I proceeded with 240 men [including officers and musicians] to escort the division train of 67 wagons to Memphis and back again to Moscow. That portion of the Fifty-seventh Ohio Volunteer Infantry detailed for this purpose was in motion at 3 o'clock a. m. on Monday, June 30, 1862. The train and escort took the Macon road from Moscow pursuant to orders. This road passes through Macon, Fisherville, and near Morning Sun to Memphis. Evidences and indications were abundant in the morning that the rebels were watching the train and awaiting a favorable opportunity to attack us, and from wounded rebels we afterward learned that it was their first intention to attack us at Macon, but they did not get up in time. They were next going to attack us at Fisherville, but their courage failed them.
When within about one mile of the Memphis and Nashville State road we were notified that a large body of the cotton-burning cavalry was ahead and would attack the train. I immediately ordered the main portion of the troops to the advance, and proceeded cautiously until we arrived at the Memphis and Nashville road, where we had to turn to the left.
Some circumstances-one of which was a man getting into a buggy at Morning Sun, half a mile east of us, and driving off furiously-induced me to anticipate an immediate attack. This man, I subsequently learned, was Col. Porter, of the cotton-burning thieves, who holds a commission in the rebel army.
At the turn of the road two companies of my command, Capt.'s Wilson and Faulhaber, under charge of the former, were left to repulse or hold in check any rebels who might approach. The train kept moving onward until its center had reached the turn of the road before spoken of, when a body of rebel cavalry, 200 strong, charged furiously upon the column from the north, while simultaneously with this movement another body of the same kind of troops, of from 120 to 150, charged on the right of our rear. Companies G and B, Capt.'s Wilson and Faulhaber, poured a well-directed fire into the enemy, which caused them to seek shelter in the woods. The charging and firing together, but principally the firing, caused a stampede among the mule teams, many of which became unmanageable and quite a number of wagons were upset-among them the one in which Thomas C. Currie and the six guards I had placed over him were, and I regret to say that in the confusion consequent upon the stampede Currie escaped. Two of the guards are missing, and supposed to be taken prisoner. The wagon was located near the center of the train, which was about three-fourths of a mile long.
As soon as the firing commenced the troops in advance, with the exception of a small guard, were ordered back to the scene of action on double-quick, which order was obeyed with alacrity. Just before the advance guard reached the center the rebels showed themselves in force in a field on the rear of our right wing. The column was halted, faced by the rear rank, and a volley fired, which drove the rebels again to the wood. Shortly, however, they rallied, keeping farther from us, and attempted to attack and stampede the head of the train. Companies A, F, and D, First Lieut. McClure and Capt.s May and Morrison commanding, were sent again forward with rapidity to frustrate the rebel designs, which they accomplished satisfactorily.
The scene of action then turned to the ground in the vicinity of the point of intersection of the Macon and Nashville and Memphis roads. The rebels occupied the woods immediately north of the said point, and also the ground on the south side of the Memphis and Nashville road and east of the Macon road. Lieut.-Col. Rice was placed in command of the troops on the left wing, occupying the south of the Macon road, and advancing, drove the enemy entirely from the rear of the train, while with a portion of the right wing deployed as skirmishers and another portion to support them I scoured the woods on the north of the road, driving the rebel cavalry before us until they were forced into the open plantation, or cleared land, surrounding Morning Sun. They passed around the village, turning to the south and passing in sight of our troops but nearly three-fourths of a mile distant. As soon as they got into the open ground the stampede became nearly as great among them as it had previously been among the mules. About 100 of them, as above stated, fled in the greatest precipitancy [sic] to the northeast, while a greater proportion of them fled to the south, passing in front of our left wing, receiving the fire of that portion of the regiment under the command of Lieut.-Col. Rice. It will be remembered that in our firing we faced by the rear rank during a great part of the action.
This ended the fighting, except a few shots fired at straggling rebels, but at such distance that it is not probable that they produced any effect. At the time Lieut.-Col. Rice was placed in command of the left wing it appears that a majority of the rebels were in his front.
We had 6 wagons damaged by the stampede of the mules, the poles or tongues of three of them being broken, the coupling, or reach, of another broken, the rounds of the front wheels of another, and some part of the running gear of the other injured. We lost 31 mules and a few sets of harness, a portion of the harness being cut by the rebels whose horses had been killed or disabled in the action, who took the mules to ride off in their haste to get beyond the reach of our guns.
The rebel loss, as nearly as can be ascertained, was 9 killed and 18 wounded; a total of 27. I have heard from rebel sources since the action that 21 were found lying on the field the day after the fight, which, if true, would swell the rebel loss to 37 killed and wounded. The attack was made upon us between 5 and 6 p. m. on the 30th of June, A. D. 1862. We killed and disabled 6 rebel horses and captured 5 more.
I cannot speak too highly of the conduct of the officers and men of the Fifty-seventh Ohio Regt. [sic] on that occasion. Lieut.-Col. Rice distinguished himself, as did Capt. Wilson. In short, the entire regiment, or that portion of it present as an escort, could not have behaved better had they been veterans, for every officer and man seemed only anxious to do his duty, and no sign of fear or faltering was exhibited.
On our way from Memphis to Moscow returning we were watched closely by Jackson's cavalry. At Germantown Col. Grierson kindly furnished an escort of 60 good cavalry, under command of Capt. Boicourt. They accompanied us as far as La Fayette. Our advance guard saw rebel cavalry frequently on the way, but they did not attack us.
Very respectfully submitted by your obedient servant,
W. MUNGEN, Col., Comdg. Fifty-seventh Regt. [sic] Ohio Vol. Infantry.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. I, pp. 14-16.

        30, Skirmish with rebel guerrillas at Butler's Mill, near Buck Lodge
JUNE 30, 1863.-Skirmish at Butler's Mill, near Buck Lodge, Tenn.
Report of Lieut. Col. Gustavus Tafel, One hundred and sixth Ohio Infantry. Buck Lodge, Tenn., July 1, 1863. I...submit...the following statement in regard to the brush had by a party of my men with a force of guerrillas on yesterday, the 30th day of June:
On Monday evening, June 29, about 8 o'clock, information reached me that a party of guerrillas were robbing the house of Mr. Bresentine, a Union man, not far from our farthest bridge guard, about two miles from this place. I immediately ordered all the mounted men I had (numbering eleven), under command of Lieut. Berthold, to repair to the place indicated and to give pursuit if the circumstances should warrant it. After several hours' ride the robbers saw themselves pressed so hard they dropped part of their plunder on the road and they themselves took to the woods. The guide (young Bresentine) then conducted our party to a house where the guerrillas were known to congregate, and there they laid in wait for them. The thieves did approach within sight, but got wind of the presence of my men, and under cover of darkness made good their escape. At daylight, June 30, the party started out again, and after a protracted search for the villains, they were on their way home and within seven miles from camp, near what is called Butler's Old Mill, when they were fired into by a force who lay in ambush, and whose numbers were estimated at from 70 to 120 men. Lieut. Berthold fell at the first fire, shot through the heart, and the rest of the party, after a short resistance, made good their escape, with the exception of one man, Charles Ofenloch, private, of Company E, whose horse gave out, and who was overtaken and killed. The rest were pursued to within two miles of camp. Immediately on their arrival I started out with a detachment of infantry, leaving only a small guard at the fort, and succeeded in recovering the bodies of the murdered men. No guerrillas were to be seen. Besides the two men killed, the following were wounded: Jacob Zink, Company H, both hands; Henry Knapp, Company H, shot in the breast; David Coil, Company F, wounded in the arm and breast. The guerrillas were armed with shotguns and revolvers. They had one of their number killed and several supposed to be wounded. I had eight suspicious characters living in the neighborhood of where the fight took place arrested, and upon careful examination discharged three of them and sent the rest on to Gallatin...
GUSTAVUS TAFEL, Lieut.-Col., Cmdg. 106th Regt. [sic] Ohio Vol. Infantry.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 52, pt. I, p. 68.

Fight at Buck Lodge.
On Tuesday a small party of rebel cavalry entered the home of a Union man living nine miles from Gallatin, Tenn., robbed him of all his money – a considerable amount – and, taking his horses, started off at full speed. A squad of Federal soldiers belonging to the One Hundred and Sixth Ohio were mounted and started in pursuit. The rebels formed an ambush at Buck Lodge, a few miles from Gallatin, in a well chosen position, and as the Union soldiers approached, delivered upon them a merciless fire, killing instantly the Lieutenant in command and one other. Three were wounded – to is supposed none of them fatally. The Federals fled, abandoning their dead and wounded comrades to the enemy.
Nashville Daily Press, July 4, 1863.

        30, Report on U. S. M. R. R. operations in West Tennessee
Memphis, Tenn., June 30, 1865.
Bvt. Brig. Gen. D. C. MCCALLUM, Director and Gen. Manager Military Railroads United States, Washington, D. C.:
GEN.: I herewith submit a report of the operations of the military railroads under my charge for the year ending June 30, 1865:
At the close of the last fiscal year the Memphis and Charleston Railroad was in operation from Memphis to Grand Junction, fifty-two miles. On the 2d of August following we ran through to Holly Springs, on the Mississippi Central road, twenty-five miles sough of Grand Junction. On August 6 we ran to Waterford and Tallahatchie River, 100 miles from Memphis. We moved Maj. Gen. A. J. Smith and command to that point. We continued to run to that point until the 18th day of August, when we abandoned the Mississippi Central road. On the 22d day of August an order was received to open it again. We did so in two days, but there being no guards upon the road the bridges were destroyed, and we did not run the road after the 23d of August. On the 29th day of August I received an order to evacuate the Memphis and Charleston road, and on the 6th day of September we ran to White's Station, ten miles from Memphis, to the headquarters of the cavalry division. The road was kept open that distance until the middle of October, when we abandoned the road altogether and did not open it again until the 20th of December. We repaired the road to Collierville, twenty-four miles, and kept it open until the 1st day of January, 1865, when we again evacuated. Between the opening and closing of the road at different times the bridge force was getting out timber, ties, &c., and framing bridges preparatory to another move.
I received another order on the 28th day of February to open the road again. We repaired it a distance of fifteen miles, took out forage and supplies for and expedition and evacuated on the 4th of March. Remained to close up until the 20th of March, when an order was received to again open the road. Found the road badly damaged. We had it opened to Collierville, twenty-four miles, on the 24th of March; to La Fayette, thirty-one miles, on the 2d of April. We found heavy work to be done between La Fayette and Moscow. Heavy rains at this time, and water so high that no work could be done for several days. Road open to Moscow, thirty-mine miles, on the 13th day of May; to LaGrange, forty-nine miles, on the 14th day of May; to Grand Junction, fifty-two, on the 20th day of May. Regular trains run to Grand Junction only until the 1st day of July, when road was opened to Pocahontas, seventy-five miles distance from Memphis, to which point we are now running regularly. The opening and closing of the line was so frequent that we could do hardly anything else. Each time the road was badly damaged, everything in the way of bridges, trestles, cattle guards, &c., being destroyed, together with several miles of track burned or thrown from the road bed. The uncertainty of what use we might have for the road, or when we would be called upon the repair it, caused me to keep considerable of a force ready at all times that could not all the time be advantageously employed. The machine-shops have been running throughout the year. Since the 1st of July, 1864, we have rebuilt five locomotives, three of which had hardly any machinery on them, nothing but the frames and builders and part of the cylinders; no trucks or driving wheels, and nothing but the iron for the tanks. I sent to the Rogers Works, Norris & Sons, and to Lancaster, Pa., for the duplicate machinery. They are now first-class locomotives. We also gave a general overhauling and repairing to four others, which are now in fine order and running. We have thirteen altogether in running order, eleven of which are No. 1, one of the remaining two needing heavy repairs, the other light repairs. Three more in the shops being rebuilt, one of which will be out about the 1st of August; the other two, perhaps, one month latter. We have built ten new boxcars, and four hand-cars. A large majority of the cars on this road were in bad order and have all been repaired.
* * * *
Very respectfully, yours, &c.,
A. F. GOODHUE, Engineer and Superintendent Military Railroads, Departments Tennessee and Arkansas.
OR, Ser. III, Vol. 5, pp. 63-65.

[1] GALEGROUP - TSLA 19TH CN See also: Boston Herald, August 9, 1861.
[2] Morning [or Rising] Sun was located north of Colliersville, east of Randolph, in Shelby County. There was a U. S. Post Office there from 1830 to 1869. There does not appear to have been a place named "Rising Sun," in Tennessee. Certainly is easy to understand how the morning sun, which is always on the rise, could be confused with a rising sun. There is and was a "Rising Sun" community and "Rising Sun Church" in Knox County. See Omni Gazetteer of the United States of America, Eleven Volumes, Vol. 4 (Omngraphics, Detroit MI, 1991).

James B. Jones, Jr.
Public Historian
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN  37214
(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456
(615)-532-1549  FAX

Sunday, June 29, 2014

6.29.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        29, General Pillow's Order and Proclamation

Major-General Pillow, having given order that whisky and tobacco should be supplied to the soldiers under his command, has issued a proclamation recalling the order. He says that he had no doubt the military board would ratify his action, as he knew the soldiers to be gentlemen and used to plenty of whisky and tobacco. The board disagree with the general.

Boston Daily Advertiser, June 29, 1861. [1]



        29, Colonel Marcellus Mundy, in charge of the U. S. Army Post at Pulaski, to Governor Andrew Johnson relative to secessionist ministers and the execution of SPECIAL ORDERS No. 6 in Pulaski and Giles County

Revt.[sic] Wellburn Mooney, Brooker Shapard, Dr. Jas. A. Sumter, Dr. Charles C. Abernathey and Robert Winstead, Citizens of Giles County who have been active participants in the rebellion as far as urging the enlistment of soldiers in the rebel army and furnishing them with money, arms and outfits--who have industriously circulated reports calculated to aggravate the already inflamed minds of their Country men, keep alive false hopes and check returning loyalty, and who sympaythse [sic] with the rebellion to such an extent as to not only forget by endanger if not destroy the interests of their own people--having been duly notified on the 12th day of this month by the Commandant at this post, that the United States could no longer brook treason in any shape under her flag--and warned, that by ten o clock [sic] of this day they should determine whether they would return to their allegiance to the Federal Government or travel into their prefered [sic] Country and aid their friends who so much need them, having decided that their conscientious scruples [sic] prevented them from taking the oath of allegiance. It is ordered that Captain [Henry G.] Twyman with an escort of twenty mounted scouts conduct them carefully and safely to our lines and deliver them under a flag of truce to any officer of the rebel army that may be met with, together with a Copy [sic] of this order and a request from the Commandant of this Post, that they be so disposed of as to benefit their cause more by deeds then words [sic]--They are allowed to carry with them into the land of their choice their families and property and should they return within our lines except as prisoners of war they will be dealt with as spies-- This disposition has been made of the above named gentlemen because the Commandant has conscientious scruples against taxing the Federal government for their support--

I gave Major Jones[2] further time. He is allowed forty eight hours from Monday, June 30, to place himself beyond our lines. As the offense of Major Jones is one of peculiar inquiry for Civil Courts I am little disposed to let him take the oath which by fair inference may wipe out the record against him. It will not do to leave him here free and untromeled [sic] as justice must be equal handed. The execution of the above order has had a salutary effect-- Many are coming forward voluntarily to take the oath. General I pray for the success of our cause & I am wearing out in my efforts-- unless I can be relieved here soon and ordered to some more congenial post, I shall be compelled to resign or go into the ground....

Papers of Andrew Johnson, Vol. 5, pp. 519-520.


        29, Letter of John A. Ritter, 49th Indiana Volunteers

June 29, 1862 from Camp Cortrell, Tenn.

Camp Cortrell Ten [sic]

June 29 1862

Dear Margarett [sic]

I will devote a few moments lesure [sic] in corresponding with you. This is Sunday evening. I have just taken a nap on my cot and feel verry [sic] much refreshed. I am in good health better than I have enjoyed for a long time. I have regained my usual strength. I have not been confined to my bed at any time, I wrote you a letter from Barbeville[3] [sic] that I had not time to finish. I do not now know where I left off but I will not try to resume the same subject. We were cut off from all mail communication and til with in a few days pass [sic] we have been almost lost [entirely?] with out news. Our mail maters [sic] were ordered by Gen Morgan to Williamsburg and it had to be ordered back and it took some time to make this change but the mails has [sic] come at last. I Recd two letters from you one the 5th the 17th. I need not say that I was glad to get them. I also recd a lot of papers that let us in to some doings of the world. We sometimes think that it will not belong the war is over but at other times we are led to think that it may be some time before the war will close. We are anxious for a spedy [sic] but Honorable termination But if the things are to be fixed up for a short time to be soon involved in strife the thinking part of the army is to let it continue, the final result of this strife I have never entertained a doubt but the length is [uncertain?].

You wish to know what to do with the money you have on hand. I am hardly able to advise you. The Paoli Bank or any of the free Banks I think not a verry [sic] safe institution. They are based on state stocks. It is time that there is an individual liability of the stock holders but most of the Bonds of the Southern States I think will depriciate [sic]. The Bank of the state would be safer. I will have Some more money to send home soon that is if the paymaster get sober longe [sic] enough to pay us off. We have four months pay due us tomorrow. The paymaster has been here for two months are more and has made one payment. He is a whiskey soaker and should be [dismissed?] from the service. Liut [sic] Barr [?] will be sent to take the money to Jeffersonville. It will be expressed from Jeffersonville to you. The health of the Reg[iment] is improving verry [sic] fast. We have over 400 for duty now and there are lots of men at home that are abler to be in camp than many that are here. Some that are at Lexington are well and loafing around town. There is an order for all the soldiers & offices to report them selves in 15 day. That will stir out lots of them and if they do not turn out they will have to suffer the penalty. Some never left home to do any service. Others have stood to the [____?] [pipe?] every day. Faucett has come up to the Reg[iment]. He is mending verry [sic] fast. He is not reported for duty yet. He does all that he is able. I shall always be under many obligations to him for the many Kind offices that he has done me. My interest has been his interest and he has watched over me and when sick nurst [sic] me like a child. Col Ray still absent from the Reg[iment]. We have not herd [sic] from him since he left Lexington. Liut [sic] Col Keigwin is in command. The offices and men have the utmost confidence in Keigwin as an officer. As for the money you have on hand do the best you can. I would not like to loose it but that is a [____?] to [men?]. The Bank of the State I expect will be the safest institution at Bedford[____________________?].

We had a good sermon from Brother Hancock. He is [______?] and respected by all. The Tenesees [sic] have fell verry [sic] much in love with him. Gen Carter & Lady attended his meeting do day. Mrs. Carter is a fine sociable lady. She says that all the Carters are clever good folks. I told her that the cleverest woman that I ever saw was name Carter. We have Gen Carter Col Carter & parson Carter with us. All Brothers. The Gen & the parson are verry [sic] prominent men in Teneses.[sic] Parson is a presbyterian [sic] so is the gen. The Tennisee [sic] women flock in to see their men since we have crossed Cumberland mountain.

Since we have began to [_____?] our health there seams to be new life in the camp. All joy mirth & life. I have never witness a grater change. The dull drag of camp life seams to be considrably [sic] mellowed [_____?] We had one deth [sic] in our Reg[iment][iment] to day. The first one for some time. A man from Crawford county. There is meeting to night. I will close for the present. Did you get the letter I sent from Boston I want you to get stackhouse [sic] to settle with Cal Fitts. I wrote you from Boston about it have the claim secured and I do not care about the money [____?] Did you find a note on Cal for 20.00 payable to Sam Wilson with a [___?] of $16 dollars.

J A Ritter


*  *  *  *

Ritter Correspondence.



        29, Skirmish at Decherd and destruction of railroad at Tracy City and Tantalon

No circumstantial reports filed.

Excerpt from the Report of Col. John T. Wilder, Seventeenth Indiana Infantry, commanding First Brigade, during the Middle Tennessee Campaign, June 23-July 7, 1863, relative to the skirmish at Decherd and destruction of railroad lines at Tracy City and Tantalon, June 29, 1863.

HDQRS. 1ST BRIGADE, 4TH DIVISION, 14TH ARMY CORPS, Camp near Duck River Bridge, July 11, 1863.

When we started again up the Cumberland Mountains, [29th] on the Brake field Point road, I determined to break the road, if possible, below Cowan. When partly up the mountain we could plainly see a considerable force of infantry and cavalry near Decherd. We moved forward to the Southern University, and there destroyed the Tracy [City] Railroad track. From there I sent a detachment of 450 men, under Col. Funkhouser, of the Ninety-eighth Illinois, to destroy the railroad at Tantalon, and went forward myself in the direction of Anderson, intending to strike the railroad at that place. Col. Funkhouser reported to me that three railroad trains lay at Tantalon, loaded with troops, and my scouts reported two more trains at Anderson. Both places being approachable only by a bridle-path, I deemed it impossible to accomplish anything further; besides, the picket force left at the railroad, near the university, were driven in by cavalry, who preceded a railroad train loaded with infantry. They were now on my track and in our rear. I collected my force, and determined to extricate them. Leaving a rear guard to skirmish with and draw them down the mountain, I started on the road toward Chattanooga. When about 8 miles from the university, during a tremendous rain, which obliterated our trail, I moved the entire command from the road about 2 miles eastward into the woods, leaving the rear guard to draw them forward down the mountain, which they did, and then escaped through the woods and joined us, some not coming up until next morning [30th].

~ ~ ~

J. T. Wilder, Colonel Seventeenth Indiana Infantry

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, p. 461.



On the night of the 30th June [sic], about 1,500 cavalry made an attack upon Decherd, a railroad station on the Nashville and Chattanooga railroad, 13 miles this side of Tullahoma. We have the particulars from a lady who was there and witnessed it all. It was intended to be a monster destruction of railroad cars, engines, and property, but it was a failure. They did not catch the trains, Notice of their approach had been given and everything was kept out of their way. The telegraph operator remained at this post until they came into the place.-He then hurriedly snatched up his apparatus and a gun and a cartridge box that happened to be in the half of the hall of the house. He made his escape by a back way to a place of concealment. The Yankees, in their rambles about the place, came near him, when he fired and killed one-thought to have been a captain. He immediately made his escape and joined a party of soldier-about 29- who were guarding the water tanks of the railroad. There were attacked by the Yankees and had to give way. They retired to a thick woods near by where, from their concealment, they fired on the villains for nearly an hour.

The enemy burned up the depot and destroyed one of the tanks, but did not do other serious damage. They failed to find the government supplies which were stored there. There were a few ladies in the place, whom they threatened and tried to bully to make them tell where the Government stores were, and how many Confederate troops were at several points nearby, but failed. They all left about midnight.-Confederacy.

Knoxville Daily Southern Chronicle, July 4, 1863.



        29, Excerpt from a Bolivar school girl's diary relative to a skirmish in Bolivar[4]

During this long delay[5] we have seen trouble and joys rise and fall successively. General Forrest's entrance into our little village flushed [us] with victory. His retreat causing sadness to fall upon every body's [sic] spirit. He was in the yard during the whole skirmish. Bullets were whizzing above and below us, burying themselves in and burrowing the ground. One shattered a paling near where Ma was standing. Houses, twenty three in number were burnt the stores were sacked, the merchants' chests were blown and hammered to pieces. The Confederates went South, and lately have had a large battle. It was a victory, but oh so dearly bought. Of Company E Captain Tate, Charly, Neely and Billie Hardy killed. Dashiell Perkins wounded. Adjutant Poe was killed. These were all that I knew. Charly Neely's death was indeed a sad one. Idolized by his family, he was a gallant soldier, noble boy and a constant christian [sic].

Diary of Sally Wendel Fentress, June 29, 1864.




[1] As cited in PQCW.

[2] Thomas Jones, a member of the Provisional Confederate Congress.

[3] Barbourville, Kentucky.

[4] The OR has no mention of any skirmish in Bolivar involving Forrest or any of his command for either May or June 1864. Nor does Dyer's Battle Index for Tennessee indicate any such fight. Forrest was apparently in Bolivar in late April and/or early May 1864, as the documents below suggest. There might well have been a skirmish in Bolivar of the kind Fentress describes in her diary. Taking into account the date of the entry, June 29, 1864, and the brevity of her words, it might well be that she was referring to a skirmish sometime between April 23 and May 2, 1864. Unfortunately there seems no other evidence to corroborate the skirmish dramatically recorded by Ms. Fentress. Forrest's retreat from West Tennessee after his raid is not well documented in the OR. See: OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. III, p. 545; Vol. 38, pt. IV, p. 110; Vol. 39, pt. II, pp. 8-9.

[5] Her last entry was on May 9.

James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214

(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456

(615)-532-1549  FAX


Saturday, June 28, 2014

6.28.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        28, Chapter 24, in eleven sections, passed by the 31st (Confederate) General Assembly, relative to the authorization of the Governor to draft free persons of color into the Army of Tennessee:
Section 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, That from and after the passage of this act the Governor shall be, and he is hereby, authorized, at his discretion, to receive into the military service of the State all male free persons of color between the ages of fifteen (15) and fifty (50) -- or such numbers as may be necessary, who may be sound in mind and body and capable of actual service.
Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, That such free persons of color shall be required to do all such menial service for the relief of the volunteers as is incident to camp life, and necessary to the efficiency of the service, and of which they are capable of performing.
Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, That such free persons of color shall receive, each, eight dollars per month as pay, for such person shall be entitled to draw, each, one ration per day, and shall be entitled to a yearly allowance each of clothing.
Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, That in order to carry out the provisions of this act it shall be the duty of the sheriffs of the several counties in this State to collect accurate information as to the number and condition, with the names of free persons of color subject to the provisions of this act, and shall, as it is practicable, report the same in writing to the Governor.
Sec. 5. Be it further enacted, That a failure or refusal of the sheriffs, or any one or more of them, to perform the duties required by the fourth section of this act, shall be deemed an offense, and on conviction thereof, shall be punished for misdemeanor, at the discretion of the Judge of the Circuit or Criminal Courts having cognizance of the same.
Sec. 6. Be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of officers in command to see that the class of persons who may enter the service under the provisions of this act, do not suffer from neglect or maltreatment.
Sec. 7. Be it further enacted, That in the event a sufficient number of free persons of color to meet the wants of the State shall not tender their services, then the Governor is empowered, through the sheriffs of the different counties, to impress such persons until the requisite number is obtained; in doing so, he will have regard to the population of such persons in the several counties, and shall direct the sheriffs to determine by lot those that are required to served.
Sec. 8. Be it further enacted, That the expenses incurred in this branch of the service shall be regarded as a part of the army expenses, and provided for accordingly.
Sec. 9. Be it further enacted, That when any mess of volunteers shall keep a servant to wait on the members of the mess, each servant shall be allowed to draw one ration.
Sec. 10. Be it further enacted, That the Adjutants of Regiments may be selected from the private soldiers in the line of the service as well as from the officers in the service.
Sec. 11. Be it further enacted, That this act take effect from and after its passage
W.C. Whitthorne, Speaker of the House of Representatives
B. L. Stoval, Speaker of the Senate. Passed June 28, 1861
Public Acts of the State of Tennessee, pp. 49-50. [1]

        28, "The War in East Tennessee."
The Columbus (Ga.) Sun has an editorial reviewing the position of affairs in East Tennessee, which we copy, inasmuch as, in the whirl of stirring events near home, the more distant fields of operation have to some extent been lost sight of.
It is now quite evident that the enemies are about to put into execution their long threatened inroad upon East Tennessee. From the best information we can gather of the situation of affairs in that section, we take it that fighting will soon commence there in earnest. The Yankees already have possession of Sequatchie Valley, a productive and stock growing country, and a force of perhaps not less than 5,000 men in Powell's Valley, a portion of country said more important to an army in the way of provisions. But the great valleys of the Tennessee, Hiwassee, Holston, and French Broad rivers, are still in possession of our troops, and can, we have reason to hope, be held against almost any force that may assail them. We think it altogether probable that Cumberland[,] Wheeler's and Big Creek Gaps, will be evacuated, if indeed they have not been already, and that our forces will make a stand at Chattanooga, Kingston, and Bean's Station, in order to keep the enemy north of Walden's Ridge and the Clinch Mountains. This, we feel confident, can be done successfully with the force now under Gen. Smith's command, which cannot be less than 30,000 men. There are, besides this force, which is a low estimate, several efficient guerilla bands, among which that of the famous [John Hunt] Morgan is the most conspicuous. This line of defense, should it be adopted, will save to us about three fourths of the territory of East Tennessee, including Jonesborough, Greenville, Knoxville, Athens, Cleveland, Chattanooga, and the line of railroad from the latter place to the Virginia line.
The part of East Tennessee thus defended is one of the most productive and healthy regions of country in the Confederate States. It contains, even now, bacon, corn, and flour, in great abundance. Nearly every farmer has bacon to sell, and which can be fought at not exceeding twenty seven cents per pound. It is one of the finest wheat countries in the South, and we have it from good authority that the wheat crop in that section this year will fall but little short of the average crop in that section this year will fall but little short of the average crop, particularly in the upper counties, There is, perhaps, at this time, more hogs and cattle in the thirty one counties of East Tennessee than in the whole State of Georgia, and upon this account, should be defended at any cost.
Whit it is true that the majority of the voting population in East Tennessee is deeply tinged with toryism, it is equally true that some of the most staunch Southern men, and many of our ablest military leaders, are East Tennesseeans. There is one fact in connexion with this disloyal section not generally known. Nearly every man and boy capable of bearing arms, who were advocated to separate State action, are now in the Southern army, and although the conscription act is not in force there, they have joined for the war. In addition to this, there are, to our certain knowledge, not less than one third of the original "Union" men now in that section -  the ultras having joined Lincoln in Kentucky – many of the m ore moderate have changed their views since Lincoln's free negro policy was promulgated in November late; while the remainder, being too indolent and cowardly to take any part in the contest  of arms, are content to remain at home, cultivating their farms, and make something to support the army.
The Semi-Weekly Raleigh Register (Raleigh, NC) June 28, 1862

        28, "The Situation"
There is no question but that the enemy is approaching to give us battle. Anticipating this approach, every preparation is being made to give him a warm reception. Baggage and sick are being sent to the rear and reinforcements to the front. Another brigade from Western Virginia passed up yesterday, chiefly Virginia troops in the[ir] first campaign in Tennessee. A portion of Buckner's command passed up last evening, and Jackson's will probably follow in the morning.
Chattanooga Daily Rebel, June 28, 1863.
In response to several inquiries, we state that applicants for appointment as Collectors of the Tax recently levied by the Congress of the Confederate States should address D.N. Kennedy, Chief Collector, Chattanooga
Chattanooga Daily Rebel, June 28, 1863.
        28, Skirmish at Rover
NEAR CHRISTIANA, June 28, 1863. (Received 1.10 p. m.)
GEN.: I left Triune at 8 a. m. June 28. Struck the enemy's picket one-half mile south of Eagleville. Steady skirmishing until we arrived within one-half mile of Rover, and there I met the enemy in force; formed a line of battle, and drove them one-fourth of a mile beyond the town. Here they opened a battery of six guns. They had a regiment and a battalion of infantry to support them. I drove them back to their rifle-pits, within a mile of Unionville. We killed 27 horses that we counted, and, I think, killed and wounded an equal number of men. We slept on the ground that night, and the next morning moved to Versailles at sunrise; there received orders from Gen. Granger to attack Middleton and attack that place. We drove the enemy with a loss of from 50 to 60 horses. Many of them were left on the ground. I was compelled to burn part of the town. I drove the enemy 3 miles beyond the town, and then fell back in the direction of Gen. Stanley's camp. We did not lose more than 20 killed and wounded.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, p. 543.

        28, "She wore a stout pair of No. 9 brogans, and her stockings and gloves were made of rabbit skins—fur side next to the flesh." A Confederate Martial Marriage at Bull's Gap
An Army Wedding.
There are very few soldiers who have been in the Western army who will not recognize in the following picture, drawn from the Montgomery Mail, a great similarity to many army weddings which he has seen. The marriage took place at Bull's Gap, Tenn:
["]An Alabama soldier, who to name would be too personal, but who is uglier than the renowned Suggs—in fact so far diseased with the chronic big ugly as to have failed procuring a furlough from Brig. Gen. Law solely on that ground—woed [sic] and won a buxom Tennessee maid of doubtful age. Whilst "Special" was out that day with his gun on a porcine scout for the purpose of reinforcing his haversack, he was interrupted in his reconnoissance [sic] by a husky voice emitting from a ten by fifteen pen inviting him to halt.
Entering the low door he found the wedding was on the tapis, en route to a happy termination. A mirthful Texan—not necessary to name—had a copy of the Army Regulations in his hand, and his throat was decorated with a piece of white bandage, such as is used by our army doctors—all ready to tie the hymenial [sic] knot [sic] so tight that it could not be undone by the teeth. The bridegroom stood largely over six honest feet in his socks, was as hairy as Esau, and pale, slim and lank.—His jacket and pants represented both of the contending parties at war. His socks were much the worse for wear, and his toes sticking out of the gaping rents thereof, reminded one of the many little heads of pelicans you observe protruding from the nest which forms the coat of arms of Louisiana. The exact color of his suit could not be given. Where the buttons had been lost off in the wear and tear of war, an unique substitute, in the shape of persimmon seed, was used. The bride had essayed to wash "Alabama's" clothes, while he modestly concealed his nudity behind a brush heap, awaiting there until they were dried.
The bride was enrobed in a clean but faded dress. Her necklace was composed of a string of chinquepins [sic], her brow was environed by a wreath of faded bonnet flowers, and her wavy hair was tucked up behind in the old fashioned way. She wore a stout pair of No. 9 brogans, and her stockings and gloves were made of rabbit skins—fur side next to the flesh. On her fingers were discerned several gutta percha and bone rings, presents at various times from her lover. She wore no hoops, for nature had given her such a form as to make crinoline of no use to her.
All being ready, the "Texas Parson" proceeded to his duty with becoming gravity. "Special" acted the part of waiter for both bride and groom. Opening the book afore mentioned, the quandam parson commenced, "Close up!" and the twain closed up. "Hand to your partner!" and the couple handed. "Atten ti-on to-o-r-ders!" and all attentioned. Then the following was read aloud: "By order of our directive General Braxton Bragg, I hereby solemnly pronounce you man and wife, for and during the war, and you shall cleave unto each until the war is over, and then apply to Governor Watts for a family right of public land in Pike, the former residence of the bridegroom, and you, and each of you, will assist to multiply and replenish the earth."
The ceremony wound up with a regular bear hug between the happy mortals, and we resumed our hog hunt, all the time "guffawing" at the stoic indifference manifested by the married parties on the picket line at Bull's Gap.
On our falling back from the gap we observed the happy couple perambulating with the column through the mud and snow, wearing an air of perfect indifference to observation or remark from the soldiery.—Should this soldier, who captured the maid of the gap, obtain a furlough for the purpose of locating in Pike, will not our friends of the Mail oblige them with an introduction to our gallant Governor Watts?
Richmond [VA] Whig, June 28, 1864. [2]

        28, Removal of military authority from civil litigations in West Tennessee
GENERAL ORDERS, No. 71. HDQRS. DIST. OF WEST TENNESSEE, Memphis, Tenn., June 28, 1865.
No cause of dispute or litigation between civilians respecting property, and in which the United States Government or some person in its service is not a party concerned, will be adjudicated or in any manner entertained by any officer of this command.
By order of Bvt. Maj. Gen. John E. Smith:
W. H. MORGAN, Brevet Brig.-Gen. and Assistant Adjutant-Gen.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 49, pt. II, p. 1049.

[1]Public Acts of the State of Tennessee, passed at the extra session of the Thirty-Third General Assembly, April 1861 (Nashville: J.G. Griffith & Co, Public Printers, Union and American Office, 1861), Chapter 24, pp. 49-50. See also: OR, Ser. IV, Vol. 1, p. 409. It is difficult to imagine what they were thinking.
[2] As cited in:

James B. Jones, Jr.
Public Historian
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN  37214
(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456
(615)-532-1549  FAX

Friday, June 27, 2014

6.27.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        27, The care of the indigent insane Confederate soldier or his family members
CHAPTER 5, An Act for the benefit of Insane Members of the Families of Volunteers
Section 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, That the wives or other members of the families of volunteers who are citizens of this State, and who have enlisted, or who may hereafter enlist in the service of the State, or of the Confederate States, who have been, or who may hereafter be placed in the Tennessee Asylum for the Insane, as pay patients, shall, during the time of their enlistment, or which such volunteers are in actual service, be supported by the State, upon the written certificate of the Chairman of the County Court from the county of residence of said volunteers, setting forth that he or they are unable, from indigent circumstances, to support such patient in the asylum.
Sec. 2 That any one of the Tennessee volunteers who may become deranged while in the service, and who has not the pecuniary means to enter the asylum as a pay patient, shall be received and treated as a pauper patient;
Provided, that nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to cause any of the present patients of the asylum to be discharged, in order to give place to any of the above patients, as provide in this act.
W. C. WHTTHORNE, Speaker of the House of Representatives
B. L. STOVAL, Speaker of the Senate
Passed June 27, 1861.
Public Acts of the State of Tennessee…April, 1861, pp. 34-35.[1]

        27, A Chicago Times, Report on Women in the Bluff City
Female Secessionists.
The feminine portion [in Memphis] are especially bitter. They confine themselves to their houses, and seldom appear in the street, but, when they do so, it is impossible not to understand the prevalent feeling among them. Walking down Main street a day or two since, I saw a naval officer, one of the most unassuming and gentlemanly men in the service, passing in such a manner as to overtake three ladies. As he approached them, the outermost quickly stepped in front of her companions, making room for him to pass, at the same time sweeping her skirts away from him with a most ungraceful and dowdyish gesture. Being a man who has seen the world, his demeanor did not indicate that he saw the motion, and she was not honored with a glance even. A short distance further on she tried it again on a calm and imperturbable gentleman, who wore the army uniform, and was again rewarded with an entire absence of recognition, unless a slightly contemptuous movement of the corners of the mouth might have been called such. The only result of all these efforts was to attract the stare and coarse remarks of the street crowd, generally accorded to a different class of women.
Women of the Town.
Of the latter class I can only say that, if Memphis suffered any diminution in numbers when the rest of her citizens stampeded, she must have been supplied beyond any chances of dearth. The streets are conspicuous with their gaudy and flowing drapery, whose amplitude is only equaled by the breadth of misapplied maternal attractions. They promenade the streets in front of their residences, in evening costume, and walk to the corner bareheaded, arm and arm, to see what is going on out of doors; and the commonest thing in the world is to see one arrayed in the fleeciest and scantiest of magnificence, sailing down the main thoroughfares, preceded by a little negro girl in all the colors of the rainbow, to carry the parasol and other small equipments--the said small African being, as a general thing, a personal investment of several hundred dollars in cash. That is the style of advertising goods in this country....
Chicago Times, June 27, 1862.[2]

        27, Prisoner of war Sallie Taylor, a Tennessee Fille du Regiment in Knoxville
A Female Prisoner.—Some excitement was created on Thursday by the arrival of a female prisoner, in the uniform of a Fille du Regiment. She is said to have been for some months following the Third Regiment of East Tennessee Renegades in Kentucky. Her name we learn is Sallie Taylor; she is from Anderson county, where she has respectable relations. She was captured somewhere in the neighborhood of Jacksonboro. An examination before the Provost Marshall, we understand, elicited some valuable information from this romantic damsel, in regard to the movement of the enemy.
[Knoxville Register.]
Savannah [Georgia] Republican, June 27, 1862.[3]

        27, Action at and capture of Shelbyville
HDQRS. DISTRICT OF THE CUMBERLAND, Murfreesborough, Tenn., July 13, 1863.
COL.: I have the honor to submit to the general commanding the Department of the Cumberland the following report of the attack made upon the rebel forces at Guy's Gap and Shelbyville, and of the occupation of those points by the forces under my command, on the 27th ultimo:
I have not yet received, from officers acting under my direction, reports of the part taken by their respective commands in the engagements of that day, and, therefore, I am unable to make this report in detail; to mention the special action of different and distinct parts of my command, and to name the officers and men most conspicuous for gallantry and a display of soldier like qualities, and those (if there are any such) who deserve censure for bad conduct or neglect of duty; nor am I able to give, in exact numbers, the loss we sustained, although I can proximate it sufficiently to state it with reasonable certainty.
At 2 o'clock on the morning of June 23, I received orders from the general commanding the Army of the Cumberland to move at daylight with all of the forces under my command, then at Triune, for Salem, save the division of cavalry under the immediate command of Gen. Mitchell, which I sent on that morning to attack the rebels at Rover and Middleton, with directions to drive them out of those places. In accordance with this order, I marched my command, and arrived at the designated point on the night of the same day (June 23). Under additional instructions there received, I marched the next day to a point on the Murfreesborough and Shelbyville pike, near Christiana, where I halted my command, awaiting further orders.
Gen. Mitchell arrived at Rover on the afternoon of the day on which he left Triune, and there met the enemy. After a sharp fight, lasting for over two hours, he drove them out of, and 2 miles beyond, the town. On the next day he again attacked the enemy at Middleton, and succeeded in handsomely whipping them, and in driving them before him.
An Official report of the casualties in these two engagements has not yet been made to me, but Gen. Mitchell states that his loss will not amount to over 20 men, while the enemy suffered greatly in killed and wounded.
On the next day (Thursday, June 25), Gen. Mitchell joined me at my camp near Christiana. At the same time Gen. Stanley, with part of his cavalry command, also reported to me at that place. It was on the morning of this day (June 25) that I sent Lieut.-Col. Patrick, with the Fifth Iowa Cavalry and the Fourth Michigan Cavalry, to observe the enemy at Fosterville. He found them there in strong force, but, by a bold dash, he gallantly drove them beyond the town, where they again made a stand and opened upon him with artillery. In obedience to my instructions, he then withdrew his forces, and returned to Christiana.
At 6 o'clock on the morning of June 27, I received a dispatch from the commanding general, directing me to feel the enemy at Guy's Gap. In accordance therewith, in one hour from that time I advanced with part of my command toward that point, moving on the Shelbyville pike. I sent Gen. Stanley, with the cavalry, in front, and ordered Gen. Baird's division of infantry to follow in close supporting distance. Upon reaching a point about 2 miles north of the gap, we met the enemy's skirmishers in the open fields. They exhibited such strength and resistance as to warrant us in the belief that they held the gap in force, and that they would there make a stubborn resistance to our advance. After skirmishing for about two hours, however, the enemy suddenly fell back to the gap, and there showed signs of a hasty retreat. Feeling confident that we could successfully attack them there, I then ordered Gen. Stanley to bring up his cavalry and clear the gap at once. The order was promptly obeyed, and the enemy sought safety in flight, running in the direction of Shelbyville. Part of our cavalry followed them in an exciting chase, capturing about 50 prisoners, killing and wounding a number, and pursuing them 7 miles, to their rifle-pits, which were about 3 miles north of Shelbyville. Here, at the intersection of the Shelbyville pike with the rifle-pits, in a small earthwork, the enemy had planted two guns; by a well-directed fire from these our advance was for a short time stayed. I was now positively assured by the action of the enemy, and by such meager and indefinite intelligence as I could gain from citizens in the neighborhood of the gap, that the rebel forces which had been stationed at Shelbyville were then evacuating that place; and although the orders I had received did not contemplate an advance beyond the gap, I determined to push forward and strike the rear of the retreating rebel forces, which forces, I afterward discovered, composed the corps commanded by Lieut.-Gen. Polk, numbering about 18,000 men. I rapidly pushed the cavalry force of my command forward. The advance soon charged over the rifle-pits, turning the point where the enemy had planted their guns, and again causing them to rapidly retreat, taking their guns with them, following them to within three-quarters of a mile of Shelbyville, where we were again held at bay by a large force of the enemy, formed on the north side of and in the town, and by a battery of three guns, that was planted in the town in such position as to command all of the approaches thereto from the north. It was now after 6 p. m. At this juncture I closed up our advancing column, and a cavalry charge was then made. Within thirty minutes afterward the town of Shelbyville was in our possession. Three superior brass guns, one of which was rifled, were captured, and the captain commanding the battery, with all of his officers and most of his men present, were our prisoners. Over 500 additional prisoners were captured in another part of the town. This charge was so irresistible and daring, and was made so unexpectedly to the enemy, that they were unable to check it by the fire of their guns and musketry, and were also unable to save their guns by flight.
One gun, however, was hurried away, and taken as far as the bridge that crosses Duck River, on the south side of the town, on the road to Tullahoma, but its wheels broke through the bridge, and the enemy was compelled to abandon it. This served to partially blockade the bridge, thereby preventing the rapid retreat of a large body of rebel cavalry which was yet on the north side of the river, closely pursued by our forces. The retreat now became a perfect rout. Those who could not cross the bridge endeavored to swim the river, which was very much swollen by the late rains. But few reached the other side, while many were drowned. In the midst of their confusion the rebel Gen. Wheeler called upon some of his troops to form and stop our advance. The First Confederate Cavalry volunteered for this duty, and, in endeavoring to perform it, saved their general (Wheeler), who escaped by swimming the river, while the whole regiment, save those of it who were killed, was captured by our forces, including the colonel, lieutenant-colonel, major, and all of the line officers present. It was now dark, and we had destroyed all of the rebel forces in the vicinity of Shelbyville north of Duck River. Our horses being perfectly exhausted and the men worn out, I ordered a halt until midnight for the purpose of resting them, then intending to pursue and overtake the enemy's train; but even by that time, so exhausting had been our march and chase of the day, we were not in a condition to proceed farther.
In the morning, as there was no possibility of overtaking the enemy, and as our men were out of rations, in accordance with the instructions of the commanding general, I send the cavalry, under the command of Gen. Stanley, to Manchester, via Fairfield and Wartrace, while I returned with Gen. Baird's division-which remained behind the day before to hold Guy's Gap-to my camp near Christiana.
Our loss in killed and wounded at Guy's Gap and Shelbyville will amount to about 50. This number can safely be set down as the maximum. We did not lose a man by capture.
The enemy lost in killed, wounded, and drowned in Duck River, at the least estimate, from 200 to 225. Our list of prisoners captured accounts for 509. Many of the enemy when captured were hurried off before their names could be obtained for the list from which this account is taken; so that, including them, the total number of prisoners captured by our forces can be placed at 700, including about 40 commissioned officers.
We also captured about 3,000 sacks of corn and corn meal, a few animals, and a quantity of meat, whisky, ammunition, and small-arms, that the enemy could not carry off in their precipitous flight. I cannot praise too highly the bold dash and gallant conduct of our cavalry at Shelbyville. The efficiency of this branch of the service, not only in this, but in all of our late engagements with the enemy, has been established beyond a doubt. The enemy can no longer boast of the superiority of their cavalry and of its accomplishments.
We met with an enthusiastic reception from the loyal citizens of Shelbyville; our soldiers were received with tears of joy, and our flag, that had been secretly hid for months, floated from many houses.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
G. GRANGER, Maj.-Gen., Cmdg.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, pp. 535-537.

Report of Capt. Alfred Abeel, Fourth Michigan Cavalry.
CAMP NEAR SALEM, TENN. July 23, 1863.
SIR: I have the honor to transmit you the following report of the incidents that came under my observation at the entrance of our forces into Shelbyville, Tenn. [4]:
After entering he fortifications, our battalion (the Third) formed on the left, facing toward the Shelbyville pike, and charged the enemy, who were in considerable force in front and to the right of us. We routed and drove them across an open field, but they formed again in the edge of the woods, our line being very much broken, in consequence of the nature of the ground which we were obliged to pass over, so much so that we were compelled to halt and reform our line, which we did in the rear of some old buildings, the enemy keeping up a brisk fire during the mean time. As soon as we could form, we charged again, and drove the enemy toward and across the Shelbyville pike, a portion of them taking the pike into Shelbyville.
The balance, which I followed, crossed the pike in an easterly direction. After pursuing them for some distance, I found myself separated from the other companies of the battalion, and with but a portion of my own command, the horses of the rest having given out. I halted my men, and from the stragglers from the various regiments of the brigade soon had a sufficient acquisition to give me about 60 men in all. With these I again started in pursuit, and followed on until we struck the Fairfield pike, about a half mile from where it terminates and is crossed by the road which leads to the Shelbyville pike. The rebels, who were at this time some distance in advance of me, which they had gained when I halted my men (but in sight), reached and took this road, but before we reached it a column of the enemy from toward Shelbyville was seen in full flight, approaching, with the evident intention of escaping by the same road, but had not as yet discovered us. The head of their column reached and crossed the pike before we could reach it, but we charged through them, cutting their column in two, and driving that portion of it that we had cut off from the main body into a high inclosure, from which it was impossible for them to escape, and capturing the entire force, together with their arms, horses, and equipments, amounting, I should say, to 160 or 170 men.
I have the honor to be, &c., very respectfully, your obedient servant,
ALFRED ABEEL, Capt. Company H, Fourth Regt. [sic] Michigan Cavalry.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, p. 563

        27, Circular No. 9, addressing "complaints arising from the new relations of the colored people with the owners of the soil, and praying for his authoritative action in the adjustment of the difficulties complained of." The new race interactions in West Tennessee
Memphis, Tenn., June 27, 1865.
The major-general commanding is daily in receipt of petitions from the people, which the reports of the various post commanders confirm setting forth complaints arising from the new relations of the colored people with the owners of the soil, and praying for his authoritative action in the adjustment of the difficulties complained of. Not alone are the freedmen responsible for the state of things which exists. The planters themselves, too reluctant to practically accept the passing away of slavery, do in numerous instances awaken and confirm that disaffection among the negroes [sic] which renders them so unfaithful and unreliable as employes. First of all, the people must acknowledge and act upon the full and permanent emancipation of the colored race. Without the cordial acceptance of this inevitable fact the military authorities can afford but partial relief to existing evils. Any other course of conduct, of the manifestation of a different spirit in dealing with the freedmen, will surely inflict upon them the punishment of their own willful blindness and injustice. The negro [sic] must be made to understand that the freedom proclaimed to him involved the care of his own support and that of his family, which he has never before known. The demands for labor are sufficient to afford employment for all able-bodied freedmen, and such will be compelled to work for the means of living. They are free to make their own contracts, and they will be fully protected in all their rights under them, but they will be compelled to the honest and faithful performance of such contracts when made. Negroes from the country will not be permitted to visit the military posts without a pass from their employer, and those unemployed must remain where the means of employment exist, namely, among the fields. Post commanders are authorized and instructed to enforce as far as practicable the principles and requirements herein contained, and they will, until the establishment and location of officers connected with the Freedmen's Bureau have removed the necessity of such interposition, compel the freedmen to the performance of all fair and equitable contracts with their employers, whenever it is apparent that there has been no oppression or unjust treatment toward the employe, and no compulsory action will be used until a full investigation has determined the rights of the particular case.
By order of Bvt. Maj. Gen. John E. Smith:
W. H. MORGAN, Brevet Brig.-Gen. and Assistant Adjutant-Gen.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 49, pt. II, pp. 1043-1044.

[1] Public Acts of the State of Tennessee, passed at the extra session of the Thirty-third General Assembly, April, 1861, (Nashville: J. G. Griffith & Co.: 1861.)
[2] As cited in:
[3] As cited in:
[4] As a result of the rapid and panicked fall of Shelbyville a Union spy was spared the death sentence. Pauline Cushman was sent behind Rebel lines to spy for General Rosecrans to gain information on the location and strength of the Army of Tennessee. She was caught by Confederate authorities, court martialed and sentenced to death hanging. She was awaiting execution when the Federal cavalry smashed through the town and so literally saved her neck as the Rebel forces hastily retreated, leaving her behind. Cushman was an actress born in New Orleans and had spied for the Union in Louisville and later in Nashville. Ms. Cushman was fondly regarded by the soldiers who gave her the nickname "Major." She was said to have worn "the accouterments of that rank." There appears to be no information about the exploits of "Major" Pauline Cushman in the OR. See: Francis Trevelyan Miller, ed. in chief, Robert L. Sanier, managing ed., Semi-Centennial Memorial, The Photographic History of the Civil War In Ten Volumes; Thousands of scenes photographed 1861-65, with Text by many Special Authorities, vol. 8, (NY: The Review of Reviews Co., 1911), p. 273. (Photograph on p. 273 also.) See also: Ferdinand L. S. Armiensto, Life of Pauline Cushman, the Celebrated Union Spy and Scout, (NY: United States Book Co., 186?), pp. 151-155, and; James D. Horan, Desperate Women (NY: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1952), pp. 118-119; and, Agatha Young, The Women and the crisis: Women of the North In the Civil War, (NY: McDowell, Obolensky, 1959), pp. 234-244.

James B. Jones, Jr.
Public Historian
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN  37214
(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456
(615)-532-1549  FAX