Friday, February 12, 2016

Notes from Civil War Tennessee, February 11-12, 1862-1864

Notes from Civil War Tennessee,

February 11-12, 1862-1864




11, Shaming young men into joining the Confederate army

A "Broomstick Battalion."—We learn from a lady friend that a project is on foot among the gentler sex of Memphis, to organize a "broomstick battalion" for the especial protection of such young gentlemen as are indisposed to enlist in the military service for the protection of their country. Nice young men that attend "small tea parties," wear kid gloves, and have their hair dressed five or six times a week by the barber, will receive their particular attention.

Memphis Daily Appeal, February 11, 1862.

          12, Letter from H. C. Lockhart to his wife, Kittie E. Lockhart, relative to anticipation of the battle of Fort Donelson

Fort Donelson, Feby 12, 1862

Mrs. "Kittie" E. Lockhart

My dear Wife:

I again have an opportunity to writing to you by Mr. Lewis T. Hughes which I gladly embrace[.] I have nothing of very great importance to add to what I stated in my letter of the 10th inst. except that our cavalry had a skirmish with the Federal Cavalry near Joel Boyds [sic] on yesterday and took one prisoner and perhaps killed one or two, but it is reported that after that that [sic] the Federal[s] slipped upon two of our picket [sic] guards, and took them prisoners. I see one of out Pickets [sic] that has been stationed at Eddyville (Kentucky) came in this morning and reported that 2 gunboats passed there last night [at] 7 or 8 o'clock on their way of the river it is not 12 o'clock M. and the smoke of the boats are now in sight. If my Hughes does not leave until evening I will try and give you an account of what they do. We are pretty largely re-enforced and if they do not look sharp we will give them a good drubbing if they come upon us by land. tho' [sic] I must confess that I have not much confidence in the capacity of our heavy guns to compete with those they have on the gunboat. You may congratulate yourself upon having left Dover when you did, for every single citizen has been ordered away but "old men" Cook and Old Man Settle[1] and the town is utterly demolished and robbed. [2] I would not have had you there amid the jam and bustle for anything conceivable. Fortune may will that I shall not see you again, but I am hopeful that I will, if I should not[,] if I should not it will gratify me to know that you will be prudent enough to keep yourself as far away as possible from the scene of strife.

Your affectionate husband,

H. C. Lockhart, Lt. Col., 50th Regt. [sic] Tenn.

My dear Wife:

Since writing the above, the gunboats came up in sight and fired on our batteries several times but did not do us any damage, at the same time there was a heavy skirmish on land in the directions of Rosemont's and Hinson's between our cavalry and theirs (as I suppose)[.] There can be no doubt, the intend attacking us immediately both by land and water and I do not think it will be longer off than tomorrow.

The Gun Boats [sic] did splendid shooting. we [sic] did not fire on the boats, we did not wish them to learn the range of our guns, after the Gunboats [sic] retired, we fired our rifle [sic] cannon and made an admirable shot. Tomorrow will bring great events in this vicinity in my opinion.

I hope for the best. We must succeed!

May God bless you! Now 3 o'clock P.M.

Your affectionate husband,

H. C. Lockhart

W. P. A. Civil War Records, Vol. 4, pp. 84-85.

          12, Destruction of Confederate Steamboats on the Tennessee River

[Extract from the Richmond Dispatch, February 12, 1862.]

MEMPHIS, February 11.-There has been a heavy loss of steamboats on the Tennessee River, in consequence of the invasion by the Federal gunboats Lexington, Conestoga, and Sam Orr. On Saturday the Appleton Belle and Lynn Boyd, Confederate boats, were burned by our troops at the mouth of Duck River. The Sam Kirkman, Julius, and Time, also Confederate boats (the latter with 100,000 worth of Government stores), were abandoned and burned at Florence on Saturday. The steamer Dunbar was sunk in Cypress Creek; the Eastport was sunk. The Cerro Gordo and Sallie Ward were the only Confederate boats captured by the Federals. The Robb escaped.

The Federal gunboats have left the river, but were expected to return. They took 20.000 pounds of salt pork from Florence, but refused to touch private property, not even cotton.

Navy OR, Ser. I, Vol. 22, pp. 822-823.

          12, Some Confederate press reports concerning the war in Tennessee


BALTIMORE, February 12, 1862.

The following dispatches relate to Federal movements in Tennessee. The Southern papers contain following interesting items:

* * * *

SAVANNAH, HARDIN COUNTY, TENN., February 10.-About 10 o'clock yesterday the railroad bridge over the Tennessee River was held by 250 Federals. The work had not been injured by the enemy. They say that within two weeks they will have possession of the entire road.

NASHVILLE, February 10.-Passengers who arrived here this evening by steamboat state that our scouts report that the Federal infantry and cavalry were within 4 miles of Fort Donelson on yesterday. Other passengers say that the Federal gunboats were in sight of the fort on yesterday. A private dispatch from Clarksville to-day says that Fort Donelson is safe and can not be taken. The Federals destroyed several spans of the bridge at Florence connecting with Tuscumbia. There were six steamboats at Florence, two of which were captured. The other four were set on fire and burned by the citizens of Florence. A private dispatch received this evening from Decatur says everything is quiet. The trains will run regularly on the Memphis and Charleston Railroad.

* * * *


Captain Fox.

Navy OR, Ser. I, Vol. 22, pp. 578-579.

          12-16, Siege &capture of Fort Donelson

Colonel Adolphus Heiman of the 10th Tennessee Infantry gave two accounts of the fall of Fort Donelson, one formal, the other not.

Report of Col. A. Heiman, Tenth Tennessee Infantry, commanding brigade.

RICHMOND, VA., August 9, 1862.

SIR: My imprisonment since the surrender of the troops at Fort Donelson has prevented me from reporting the operations of the brigade under my command during the action at Fort Donelson before now. In the absence of Gen. Pillow, who commanded the division to which my brigade was attached, it becomes my duty, and I have the honor, to submit to you the following report:

After the battle of Fort Henry, on February 6 last, I was directed by Gen. Tilghman, then in command of the defenses of the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers, to retreat with the garrison of the fort by the upper road to Fort Donelson. The garrison consisted, besides the company of artillery which was surrendered with the fort, of two, the first commanded by myself and the second by Col. Drake, consisting of an aggregate of about 2,600 men. After a very tedious march we reached Fort Donelson at 12 o'clock at night, where Col. Head, of the Thirtieth Tennessee, was in command during the absence of Gen. Tilghman. Expecting the arrival of Gen. B. R. Johnson and other general officers in a few days I did not assume command, which would have been my duty, being next in command to Gen. Tilghman.

Gen. Johnson arrived on the 8th, Gen. Pillow on the 9th, Gen. Buckner on the 12th, and Gen. Floyd on the 13th of February.

The brigade assigned to my command consisted of the Tenth Tennessee, Lieut.-Col. MacGavock [sic][3]; Forty-second Tennessee, Col. Quarles; Forty-eight Tennessee, Col. Voorhies; Fifty-third Tennessee, Col. Abernathy; Twenty-seventh Alabama, Col. Hughes, and Capt. Maney's light battery, amounting in all to an aggregate of about 1,600 men.

This brigade formed the right of Gen. Pillow's division, and was in line on the left of the division of Gen. Buckner, who commanded the right wing.

The ground I occupied in line of defense was a hill somewhat in the shape of a V, with the apex at the angle, which was the advance point as well as the center of my command, and nearly the center of the whole line of defense. From this point the ground descended abruptly on each side to a valley. The valley on my right was about 500 yards in width, and divided my command from Gen. Buckner's left wing. The one on my left was about half that width, and ran between my left wing and the brigade commanded by Col. Drake. These two valleys united about half a mile in the rear. The ground in front of my line (2,600 feet in length) was sloping down to a ravine and was heavily timbered.

We commenced digging rifle pits and felling abatis on the 11th, and continued this work during the following night, under the directions of Maj. Gilmer and Lieut. Morris, engineers, the latter belonging to Gen. Tilghman's staff. The pits were occupied by Lieut.-Col. MacGavock's regiment on the right, Col. Voorhies' regiment on the left, Col.'s Abernathy's and Hughes' regiments and Maney's battery in the center. Col. Quarles' regiment I held in reserve, but several of his companies also had to occupy the pits, the other regiments not being sufficient to cover the whole line. Col. Head, of the Thirtieth Tennessee Regiment, occupied the valley between my command and Col. Drake's brigade. I was afterward informed that this regiment was also placed under my command, but, the colonel not having reported to me, I did not know it.

In the mean time the enemy commenced forming his line by investment and his pickets were seen in every direction. Early on the morning of the 12th he had two batteries placed in range of my position, one on my left and front, and the other on the other side of the valley, on my right. Both were in the edge of the woods and under cover, while Capt. Maney's battery, on the summit of the hill, was entirely exposed not only to the enemy's artillery, but also to their sharpshooters. No time could yet have been spared to protect his guns by a parapet; besides, we were ill-provided with tools for that purpose. However, our battery had some advantage over the battery on my left in altitude, and had also a full range of a large and nearly level field to the left, which the enemy had to cross to attack Col. Drake's position or my own from that direction. In that respect and some other points the position of my battery was superb.

The enemy's battery on my right had only range of part of my right wing, but was in a better position to operate on Gen. Buckner's left wing. Both batteries opened fire at 7 o'clock in the morning and kept it up until 5 o'clock in the evening, firing at any position on our line within their range. Their fire was returned by Maney's battery, Graves' battery of Col. Brown's command, and a battery at Col. Drake's position. The enemy's guns were nearly all rifled, which gave them a great advantage in range and otherwise. However, with the exception of the loss of two artillery horses, my command met with no other serious casualties on that day.

At night I strengthened my pickets and directed Lieut.-Col. MacGavock to throw a strong picket across the valley on my right. There were no rifle pits or any other defenses in that valley, although a road leading from Dover to Paris Landing, on the Tennessee River, runs through it Col. Cook, of Col. Brown's brigade, co-operate with Lieut.-Col. MacGavock in guarding this point afterwards. Strong parties were kept at work during the whole night in improving the rifle pits and felling abatis.

Daylight next morning (13th) showed that the enemy was not idle either. During the night he placed another battery in position on my left, and the one on my right and center and on Capt. Graves' battery. He had also thrown across the main valley two lines of infantry (advance and rear), about three-quarters of a mile from our line, and the firing of all his batteries was resumed early in the morning and was promptly answered by our batteries. One of the gunners had both his hands shot off while in the act of inserting the friction primer.

At about 11 o'clock my pickets came in, informing me of the advance of a large column of the enemy. Having myself been convinced of that fact, and finding that they were deploying their columns in the woods in front of my right and center, I directed Capt. Maney to shell the woods, and use grape and canister when they came within the proper range, which was promptly executed. Capt. Graves, seeing the enemy advancing upon my line, with excellent judgment opened his battery upon them across the valley. In the mean time their sharpshooters had approached my line through the woods, fired their rifles from behind the trees, killing and wounding Maney's gunners in quick succession. First Lieut. Burns was one of the first who fell. Second Lieut. Massie was also mortally wounded; but the gallant Maney, with the balance of his men, stood by their guns like true horses, and kept firing into their lines, which steadily advanced within 40 yards of our rifle pits, determined to force my right wing and center. Now the firing commenced from the whole line of rifle pits in quick succession. This constant roar of musketry from both lines was kept up for about fifteen minutes, when the enemy were repulsed; but they were rallied, and vigorously attacked us the second and third time, but with the same result, and they finally retired. They could not stand our galling fire. The dry leaves on the ground were set on fire by our batteries, and, I regret to state, several of their wounded perished in the flames. The pickets I sent out after their retreat brought in about 60 muskets and other equipments they had left behind. I learned from two prisoners who were brought in that the attack was made by the Seventeenth, Forty-eighth, and Forty-ninth Illinois Regiments, and have since learned from their own report that they lost in that attack 40 killed and 200 wounded.

Our loss I cannot accurately state, nor am I able to give the names of killed and wounded, as subsequent events prevented me from getting reports of the different commanders; but I am sure that my loss is not over 10 killed and about 30 wounded, nearly all belonging to Capt. Maney's artillery and Col. Abernathy's regiment, which was at that time under the command of Lieut.-Col. Winston. The firing from their batteries continued all day.

Late in the evening Gen. Pillow re-enforced me with section of a light battery, under Capt. Parker. The night was unusually cold and disagreeable. Snow and sleet fell during the whole night; nevertheless we constructed a formidable parapet in front of the battery, in which I was actively assisted by Maj. Grace, of the Tenth Tennessee. This hard and most unpleasant labor was chiefly performed by Col. Quarles' regiment. It was a horrible night, and the troops suffered dreadfully, being without blankets.

Next day (14th), finding the enemy again in line across the valley, and believing that he would attempt to force my line on my right, I directed Capt. Maney to move a section of his battery down the hill, in range of the valley. The advance of the enemy towards this direction would then have been checked by Graves' and Maney's batteries, and the fires of MacGavock's and Cook's regiments from the right and left; but no demonstration was made in that direction, although I considered it the weakest point in our line. During the whole day my command was exposed to a cross-fire of the enemy's batteries and were much annoyed by their sharpshooters.

At 11 o'clock at night I was summoned to attend a consultation of general officers at Gen. Floyd's headquarters. The general opinion prevailed that the place could not be held against at least treble the number of our forces, besides their gunboats, and that they could cut off our communication at any time and force a surrender; therefore it was agreed to attack the enemy's right wing in force at 4 o'clock in the morning, and then to act according to circumstances, either to continue the fight or to cut through their lines and retreat towards Nashville. Gen. Buckner was to move a little later and attack the enemy's flank at the moment he gave way to our forces in his front. I was directed to hold my position. Col. Bailey was to remain in the fort (near the river), and Head's regiment was to occupy the vacated rifle pits of Gen. Buckner's command. I doubted very much that these positions, isolated as they were from each other, could be held if attacked, and I stated my fears to Gen. Floyd, who replied, if I was pressed to fall back on the fort or act as circumstances would dictate.

At the appointed hour on the 15th the different brigades moved to their assigned positions. Maj. Rice, aide-de-camp to Gen. Pillow, brought an order to me from Gen. Buckner to send a regiment forward and hold the Wynn's Ferry road until the arrival of Gen. Buckner's division. This duty I assigned to Col. Quarles' regiment, which returned after the fulfillment of this order. Maj. Cunningham, chief of artillery (directed by Gen. Floyd), reported to me that two light batteries were at my disposal. Having more guns than I could use to an advantage, and not a sufficient number of gunners to work them, I respectfully declined the offer, but requested him to send me efficient gunners for at least one battery. This was done. Maj. Cunningham came with them and remained with me for some time. During the day my guns were used to the best advantage, and at one time with excellent effect, against the enemy's cavalry, who immediately after were pursued by Forrest's cavalry.

About noon I was directed by an aide-de-camp of Gen. Buckner to guard the fire of my battery, as he intended to send a column to charge one of the enemy's batteries. Seeing these regiments pass my left in the open field, and being aware that my left wing could not be attacked at that time, I sent two regiments from my left (Col. Voorhies' and Col. Hughes') to their support; but before they reach the ground the three attacking regiments were withdrawn. The battery was not taken, and my regiments returned. Early in the evening the different troops were ordered back to their respective rifle pits, but the fighting continued at different points until night.

At 2 o'clock on the morning of the 16th Lieut. Moorman, aide-de-camp to Gen. Johnson, brought the order to vacate the rifle pits without the least noise and to follow the movement of the troops on my left, stating at the same time that it was the intention to fight through their lines before the break of day. All the forces were concentrated near Dover, under the command of Gen. Johnson. In the mean time white flags were placed on the works of our former lines, and by the time the sun rose above the horizon our forces were surrendered.

Much credit is due to Capt.'s Maney and Parker, of the artillery, for their gallant conduct during the action, as well as to many other officers and men, whom, in the absence of reports from their respective commanders, I am unable to particularize; but it gives me great pleasure to state that, with very few exceptions, they all have done their duty like brave and gallant soldiers.

To Capt. Leslie Ellis, acting assistant adjutant-general, and my aide-de-camp, Capt. Bolen, I am particularly indebted for their untiring exertions in assisting me in the performance of my duties. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

A. HEIMAN, Col., Cmdg. Brigade.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 7, pp. 366-370.


Heiman's other account of the fall of Fort Donelson was composed while he was a prisoner of war at Fort Warren, Boston Harbor. On April 23, 1862, his subordinate Lieutenant-Colonel Randal McGavock of the 10th Tennessee Infantry Regiment noted the following in his diary:


Below I furnish Col A Heiman's Report of the battle at Ft. Donelson in verse. Its chief merit is lost to those who do not hear him read it.

Pillow and Floyd, two Generals of might

Came to Donelson the Yankees to fight.

Pillow said he is a Hero

And would drive them back to Cairo,

The Cumberland and Tennessee

From Hessians I will free--

In fact I am the man for the crisis

If you only follow my advices--

With Johnson on my left, and Buckner on my right

I shall give them a Devil of a fight-

Gideon, said Floyd, I'll make you understand

That these troops here are under my command,

Besides your are too big for your britches,

This you have shown by your ditches--

Ah! Cried Pillow, do you mean at Camargo[4]

On this unkind hint I shall lay an Embargo--

But let this pass, we must have no contentions now,

Or we will not gain fresh laurels for our Brow.

With pick, shovel, and spade

Lines of rifle pits were made.

And a consultation was held of Cols. & Gens wise

On the 15th of Feb. by daylight in the morning

The Rebels gave them a Hell [sic] of a storming,

They were driven back from their position

And our affairs were thought to be in the best condition--

Now our Generals put together their wits

And ordered the troops back to their rifle pits--

Said it was no use to hold out any longer,

The enemy is by great odds the stronger--

They will cut off our communication

And that will be followed by starvation.

Gideon said Floyd, I cannot, I will not surrender

And he felt his neck and pulled his suspender--

Ah Ha! said Pillow, you are afraid of the halter--

Now did you ever know me to falter--

But like yourself, surrender I will not,

Let us try and fix up a great plot--

Give the command over to Buckner and let us be smart,

Let his surrender while we depart--

And so they did,

With kin and kith

and during the night

They took to flight

Said now all is over

We are the Heroes of Dover--

Make defences [sic], that was the order given

That the enemy from our lines may be driven.

Pen and Sword [5]




          12, Occupation of Franklin[6]

MURFREESBOROUGH, TENN., February 12, 1863.

Maj.-Gen. WRIGHT, Cincinnati, Ohio:

The river is safe from cavalry, and probably will be for twenty days. The occupation of Franklin, with the late repulse of Forrest, Wheeler, and others, will keep them away from the river for some days. The land route is good for patrols, but animals coming thus usually get insufficiently fed, and arrive much jaded, and unfit for immediate service. Send by river, if possible.

W. S. ROSECRANS, Maj.-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. II, p. 60.

          12, Life in the Army of Tennessee's winter camp

"When a cavalryman say jocosely to you 'I'm off to the front,' the chances are two to one that he never gets back again. When a heavy column is ordered 'to the front,' you may know that the Yankees are impudent and intractable. 'The front' is another name for purgatory, some people think; but the most of our cavalry boys like the sort of sport, which most abounds there, and consider 'the front' a very agreeable place in clear weather, for a breakfast is often gotten at the expense of the enemy, and the perquisites in general are tempting to an enterprising 'sojer' with a two-forty nag [sic]! This place, Wartrace, is near 'the front' and may, before operations in this quarter are done with, become, in the varying movements of the army, the 'front' itself. We are within sound of the outposts, and every day are regaled with a serenade of artillery and small arms. We have several brass bands, which vary the music now and the, so that among our bands, we are left constantly melodious."

The weather had been cold and the correspondent, "BUSTEMENTE," related the following story to show just how cold it was:

"We have had some precious cold weather of late, mind what I tell you. The other morning Tom Moonly-one of 'ours' and as live a specimen of Erin as ever dug a ditch-came in from the trenches perfectly blue with cold. 'Ochoar! [sic] says he, 'and isn't this enough to friz the river Styx in Purgatory! Divil a drap in camp, an' myself as cowld as a goose's foot on a block of ice in Canada! I axed Liftinant Shaw for a drink, or a dollar, and he gave me nather. Sure I'll die altogether an' be buried in the woods, an' the jaybirds and whippoorwills will cover me up, and preach my funeral. Begorra! Captain, would ye give me a bit of a place to the fire?' I made room for the lamenting son of the 'Isle,' who presently became quite merry and facetious, as the flames thawed his frozen body."

Chattanooga Daily Rebel, February 12, 1863.

          12, Chattanooga newspaper editorial regarding the dangers of depreciation of Confederate currency

....Those who in any manner are engaged in the business of discrediting Confederate money or causing its depreciation, are among our worst and most dangerous enemies. Our soldiers who are enduring the hardships, submitting to the privations, and incurring the dangers which necessarily attend a soldier's life, receive their pay only in this kind of money. They have to buy the comforts and sometimes the necessaries of life for themselves and their families with this currency....If our currency is discredited our Government will not be able to buy what is absolutely essential to the prosecution of the war, except at the most ruinous rates. This creates a necessity for a still greater issuance of Treasury notes and a consequent aggravation of the evils. As the amount of these notes in circulation increases, the money becomes depreciated and as a consequence the pay of the soldiers is virtually decreased....those who have discredited and are discrediting Confederate money...are doing the soldiers and the cause for which they are fighting the greatest possible amount of injury and cannot justly be considered in any other light than public enemies....One excuse given for refusing to receive Confederate money in payment of debts is, that the debts were contracted before the war commenced, when money was more scarce and articles sold cheaper than they now do....The object of the men who refuse Confederate money in payment of debts must be to wait until after the war and then collect them in gold and silver. They do not wish to run the risk of Confederate money becoming depreciated, and therefore they prefer waiting the result of the struggle before collecting their debts....Where the refusal to receive the money not only injures the man who offers to pay, but at the same time inflicts a cruel blow upon the soldiers who are fighting the battles of the country and upon the government to which the man who refuses owes his allegiance, it becomes a grave offence [sic]....The Government may force men to take Confederate money in payment for their produce, but so long as it permits others to refuse it in payment of debts, it will be depreciated. The refusal to receive Confederate money in payment of debts is like stopping the pulsation's of the heart in the human system, and as well might you expect a man to live after his heart had ceased to beat, as to expect Confederate money to be valuable as currency after the community had ceased to receive it in payment of debts....They say they want to wait until the war is over and them collect their debts. Why is this? Is it not because they are unwilling to risk Confederate money? If they were satisfied that we would be successful and that Confederate money would be as good, if not better than any other kind of money would they not be secure it? If they should be offered gold or silver or Tennessee money [sic] would they reject that? Disguise it as they may attempt to do, their refusal grows out of a distrust of our currency. If our country had been filled with such men we would long since have been a subjugated and degraded people. But thanks to the patriotism of our people and the gallantry of our soldiers, the men whom I have been describing [sic] are the rare exceptions. They want to wait to see the result of the experiment we are making. They do not wish to risk anything upon our cause, and their great object is to take care of and save their property. [sic] Is their property [sic] more valuable than are the lives of our noble soldiers?...Talk not to me of property when compared with human life and human suffering....There are other methods of discrediting Confederate money besides directly refusing it, such as by making a difference between it and other kinds of money, or by placing a higher price on article when Confederate money has to be paid....The only danger is that during our present struggle, when our currency most needs the confidence and support of the people a few narrow minded, short sighted, and unpatriotic men of wealth and capital [sic] may strike it a heavy blow by doing all in their power to stop the life-blood of the Confederacy. But they cannot and will not succeed.

Chattanooga Daily Rebel, February 12, 1863

          12, Major-General Rosecrans proposes to arrest deserters from the Army of the Cumberland

MURFREESBOROUGH, TENN., February 12, 1863--11.50 p. m.

Maj.-Gen. HALLECK, Gen.-in-Chief:

There are, in the States of Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois alone, some 30,000 men belonging to this army--skulkers, deserters, men absent without leave, men improperly paroled, &c. I desire authority to send officers, both of high and low rank, and, in some cases, even sergeants, to arrest and collect them, and bring them to duty.

W. S. ROSECRANS, Maj.-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. II, p. 60.

          12, General Joseph E. Johnston reports to President Jefferson Davis urging the retention of General Braxton Bragg as Commander of the Army of Tennessee

TULLAHOMA, February 12, 1863.


Since writing you on the 3d, I have seen the whole army. Its appearance is very encouraging, and gives positive evidence of Gen. Bragg's capacity to command. It is well clothed, healthy, and in good spirits. The brigades engaged at Murfreesborough are now stronger than they were on the morning of the battle; mainly by the return of the absentees brought back by the general's vigorous system.

Lieut.-Gen. Polk informed me, at Shelbyville, where his corps is encamped, that its general officers want confidence in Gen. Bragg, thinking, like himself, that although the general possesses some very high military qualities, he wants some that are essential. On this subject I have distinctly questioned none but the persons mentioned in my former letter. My object has been to ascertain if the confidence of the troops in the ability of the army to beat the enemy is at all impaired. I find no indication that it is less than when you were in its camp. While this feeling exists, and you regard Gen. Bragg as brave and skillful, the fact that some or all of the general officers of the army, and many of the subordinates, think that you might give them a commander with fewer defects, cannot, I think, greatly diminish his value. To me it seems that the operations of this army in Middle Tennessee have been conducted admirably. I can find no record of more effective fighting in modern battles than that of this army in December, evincing skill in the commander and courage in the troops, which fully entitle them to the thanks of the Government.

In the early part of January, the country north of Grenada being considered impracticable, I directed Maj.-Gen. Van Dorn to bring to Gen. Bragg's aid the cavalry of the Mississippi army, except such as Lieut.-Gen. Pemberton considered necessary to him. It has not yet arrived.

The enemy's present dispositions indicate no immediate advance against Gen. Bragg. In Mississippi, everything depends upon the result of the labor opposite Vicksburg. If Gen. Grant should succeed in making a navigable canal, and through it pass Vicksburg, and invest Port Hudson with the combined armies, it would be difficult for us to succor the place. Indeed, we have not the means of forming a relieving army.

Gen. Pemberton is not communicative. I am told, however, that he is confident that the canal cannot be made. It seems to me to depend on the condition of the river-whether or not it is too high for work with spades.

I have been told by Lieut.-Gen.'s Polk and Hardee that they have advised you to remove Gen. Bragg and place me in command of this army. I am sure that you will agree with me that the part that I have borne in this investigation would render it inconsistent with my personal honor to occupy that position. I believe, however, that the interests of the service require that Gen. Bragg should not be removed.

Most respectfully, your obedient servant,


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. II, pp. 632-633.

          12, Prose and poetry in Chattanooga[7]

It seems a lady friend of the editor's sent him "a prettily worked tobacco-bag-(red, white and blue) filled with Turkish Tafferlati[8] [sic], with a request that I 'put that in your pipe and smoke it'....Filling my corn-cob mearchaum [sic] (a new thing) with the generous weed, I lit and whiffed and read the little scented gilt-edge, over and over again-

The note was so delightful that I fell

To speculating after its perusal.

And wrap't in reverie deeper than a well

"Built castles" on a larger scale than usual,

Until the sweet chimes of the Vesper bell

Inviting sleep-my eyes could no refusal brook,

And "worldly cares" went floating out the door.


I dreamed that I had borrowed half a dime

From every man in town-except my aunt [sic]

And all my hungry creditors at a time

Were at my door, and not an hour would grant

But I must pay, and then to "the sublime"

From "the ridiculous" I quickly went-

For letters came-one to my Aunt, [sic] and bro't [sic] her a

Spanking big prize in the Havana Lottery.


And then I dreamed she had an apoplectic

Of joy, and died in twenty seconds less than half a minute,

And I became (not much to my regret)

Possessor of her letter, and the prize within it.

Then, after giving her a decent burial outfit,

Resolved to see the world, and to begin it-Repudiated all my little trifling debts

And liabilities, and-pocketed the assets.


I further dreamed that I invested all my gold

In acre lots of Chattanooga soil:

And ere I was another fortnight old

Had made a fortune-boring after oil!

Until in fat, and wealth, I fairly roll'd

Then gathered up my own share of the spoil

And travelled off, for Europe-restless dreamer

Across the ocean, on a Havre steamer.


O'er the glad waters of the deep blue sea

There sudden came an atmosphere so murky.

The Captain ordered all the merchandize [sic] to be

Thrown overboard, but ere they got to work, he

Foundered the ship, all were drowned but me.

Who drifted safely to the shores of Turkey.

Were I was kindly treated by the Dey Al Serim

Who turned me loose in his Sultanic harem.


The novelty of the thing woke me up so quick it scared me-but I resumed my luerubrations [sic] with philosophic calmness. 'Oh! Women!' in the language of A. Ward, "Tu yure sex, commenly kawled the phair sex, we are indetted for our bornin, as well as any uther blessins in these low growns of sorro. Sum poor sperreted fools blame youre sex for the 'difficulty in the garden' but I know men are a desettful set, and when the apples had bekkum plum ripe, I have no dowt but Adam would have rigged a cyder press, and like as not went onto a big bust and been driv off onaware. Yure 1st muther was a lady, and her dawters is ditto, and none but a triflin kuss will say a word agin yu. Ho pin that no waive of trubble may ever ride across yure peaceful brests. I konklude these remarks with the following centyment: Woman-she is a good egg.

Chattanooga Daily Rebel, February 12, 1863.

          12, A New York correspondent's view of life in Civil War Memphis.



The sprightly correspondent of the New York World thus discourses, in a recent letter, on life in Memphis:

We perceive that the Richmond journals are complaining at the degeneration of public morals in their city. A very close comparison might be instituted between Memphis and Richmond in this respect. Both are about the same in size; both are the centers of large [army] camps.

A very considerable distribution of money, such as it is, finds outlet at both places. The former has the addition of that paradoxical element, the demoralizing influence of a seat of legislation. But in return we have the equally dangerous element of cotton speculation. Vice thrives. Money is squandered. Living is more extortionate than at one of the fashionable watering places; with this difference that in the case we are paying extravagantly for being starved with want or poisoned with unpalatable diet. The cost of board at one of the hotels is three dollars per day, the necessary gratuities to waiters and servants a dollar more, not to mention the very excusable purchases of fruits and confections outside. Memphis is supplied from the North with almost every necessary. Bread, butter, vegetables, fuel, tobacco, clothing, liquors, and in fact everything on or in which to live. Cotton alone and that in limited quantities is the single resource of the country. That, however, fortunately for the inhabitants is just now a potent and most attractive staff of life. A cabbage sells for seventy-five cents, but a pound of cotton sells for nearly seventy.


This extraordinary inflation is the prices is partly the result of that natural decline in the purchasing power of paper money in time of war, partly from the insecurity of a city so little removed from the enemy's lines, and the influence of large army of needy officers and men whose money is like that of sailors, burning through their pockets.

The value of cotton when reckoned in gold or sterling exchange is not perhaps more than its nominal rates. So soon as the order was issued prohibiting the payment of gold for cotton, the value of the greenbacks depreciated for that purpose by so much. The fear of a return of the rebel forces was another cause of advance in prices, so that the local money of Tennessee and Southern States held a favorable distinction with greenbacks.

As Gen. Grant pressed the rebel armies further back into central Mississippi, business drooped, but not that he has withdrawn, the southern currency holders are looking up. The rates are, of course, very indefinite as the transactions are illegitimate. I am informed that southern bank notes are saleable at 30 cents; confederate at 30 to 35. In Jackson I learn that greenbacks are held at 12 to 15 above confederate. Gold at three dollars for one. Fractional notes are ranging from five to ten cents premiums.


Memphis contains at present in round numbers about as follows:

Original inhabitants, white males……………………………………………………….5,000

Original inhabitants, white females……………………………………….……………6,000

Original inhabitants, slaves………………………………………………………….…5,000

New-comers, Jews, traders and civilians………………………………………………4,000

Army of Gen. Grant, in garrison and encamped about the city say………………………………………………………………………...……..……30,000

Negroes, fugitives, and hangers on…………………………………….……….…….15,000

Of the first named class it need only be said that they consist of the aged, the incandescent [sic], the respectable and conservative, who, from, from motives, did not join the Southern army, with a few refugees who have returned since our occupation of the place. The second are merely the complementary proportion of wives, daughters and protégés [sic] of the males, with an excess belonging to those who are in the Confederate service or who have expatriated themselves during our rule. They consist of all sorts; from the ideal high-born dame of the true Southern tope, descended through channels of Norman blood since the Conquest, to the poor adventurer of yesterday, whom the upper and nether millstones of society have ground to unpretending dust. The bulk of the natives of course, are, beyond doubt, sympathizers with the South. Not all the prodigious array of blue and gold, the enormity of shoulder straps and richness of accoutrements, nor the splendid personel [sic] of our staff officers, nor the charms of our dry goods stores have been able to turn the scions of the first families from their first loves. They have been abundantly tempted, but the warm belles of Tennessee remain obdurate toward [the] Union and Union officers.


The lower classes, whatever and wherever they are, are no doubt too much like their coevals [sic] elsewhere-too many and too improvident. The amount of poverty, suffering, and consequent imprudence is, we have reason to believe, far greater than could be wished; but it is inseparable from the desperate exigencies of a society like this.

Of the new comers, we may say that generationally they answer to the well-known crowd of sharks, cormorants, sharpers, gamblers, speculators, anxious relatives seeking for sick soldiers, giddy women crowding the hotels, calling themselves wives of officers, waiting mainly till the paymasters arrive. The most mixed, assorted, and grotesque lot of mortals crowded together imaginable. The steamboat which leaves our wharf carries in its cabins the blackleg, the Jew, the cotton manufacturer, the gambler, the capitalist and the bruiser. Side by side the table sits the wrecked inspissated snuff dipper of the interior [of] Mississippi; the southern female spy; the noble and Christian Sister of Mercy, the Florence Nightingale of the West; the beautiful and spiritual bride mourning her forced absence from her living lord; the woman in scarlet; the ingenuous paysanne [sic], and the energetic and clever little woman, who thinking no evil, is everywhere and always bright, beautiful, [sic] happy.

Then there remains that class of ravenous wolves in sheep's clothing, whom no rebuff, no castigation, and no insult can restrain from the pestilence of "fine catches." These men have a monstrously keen eye on the purchase of cotton with gold in some cases, the sale of boots and quinine to well-known rebels, and generally all sorts of lawful and lawless extortionate trade.

Then follow next in noxiousness the inevitable crowd of gamblers and blacklegs for which the Mississippi has so long been notoriously famous. The "hells" of Memphis are reopened. The principal one, the "Senate"[9] is the most flourishing of the lot. Here nightly can be seen a crowd of officers and gentlemen of faultless linen and massive diamond rings resplendent from lily-white hands. Prominent among the players is a brigadier general, not very well known for his engagements with the enemy, but is known to have complained to the War Department of the insufficiency of his salary to meet the demands of the reasonable courtesies attaching to his station. The man who plays heavily may sooner or later be expected to prostitute his office to gratify his love of play.

All this incongruous collection of people, crowded into a city of this size, form not an unlike picture to that so forcibly described in the Richmond papers. Washington in its day may have seen more of this demoralization in quantity, intensity and diversity, we think neither of the capitals could equal Memphis. The want, extravagance, the vice, filth, squalor, discomfort, disease, dirt and destruction is nowhere to be paralleled. It is the utmost damnable and desperate place in which a refined man or a refined woman was ever reduce to live it, the caves of the Kamtschadoles [sic][10] been pleasant by comparison. It is impossible not to associate this wretchedness with the war, and the war with the army, so that the very sight of soldiers suggest unpleasant thoughts. Our patriotism acknowledges the naturalness, the necessity of this state of things, but the senses revolt, and for a moment we are inclined to curse the war.

Memphis Bulletin, February 12, 1863.

          12, Comments from "BUSTAMENTE" regarding Bedford County and Wartrace environs

This is Bedford county, famous for its Union proclivities. I am inclined to think that these have been exaggerated. There is no doubt, however, of the existence of a large element of this kind, in and about Shelbyville, the County Seat. The fact shows how easy it is for a few mad and bad men, regarded as leaders, to corrupt an entire section. Three or four persons of this description have done all the mischief. One is just about taking his departure, having been allowed to remain on parole at home, upon conditions, and for a certain period, a man of some ability hitherto a citizen of wealth, he was the more enabled to lead the ignorant and confiding astray. Other of less exceptional character are present in Nashville.

The country surrounding War Trace [sic] is once of the finest in the South. I knew of few neighborhoods that can compare with that which is scattered over a cluster of hills, every one of which should be a vine -clad, about a mile from the encampment. Within cannon shot about a mile from encampment. Within cannon shot of a beautiful rural Church may be found a social circle, particularly hospitable, cultivated and wealthy. These people live in fine houses, own healthy acres and plenty of them raise prize stock, and live elegantly. Heavens! The golden source of provisions, daily brought into camps! It would make your mouth water. But the glory of this region is the "dining out," &c. On occasions of this sort, aside from the plenteous larders, plentifully laid upon the board, there is a large profusion of pretty girls, of which our boys are especially fond.

Chattanooga Daily Rebel, February 12, 1863.

          12, Advertisements in the pages of the Chattanooga Daily Rebel:

LOST SWORD. The Captain who took a sword from the Conductor, [sic] claiming it as his, on the arrival of the cars from Tullahoma at this place on Saturday evening the 7th inst. Will please return it to the REBEL Office, as it was mine. The gentleman is an officer in the army, and is know by sight to the Conductor. If the sword is not returned, the proper steps will be taken to expose the officer. Wm. C. Gorman, Capt. 4th Fla. Regt. [sic]

VIRGINIA SALT. I have a small lot of Virginia Salt, which I keep on hand constantly at 25 cts. per lb. at Swick's old stand. M. Bradt.

NOTICE TO ALL SUBJECT TO CONSCRIPTION. I am authorized by the commanding General to say that as soon as all the conscripts in the different counties have been called to the rendezvous, the railroad, provost and other guards, commanding officers of posts and detachments, will receive orders to arrest all male white citizens of conscript age, who cannot show a certificate of exemption from conscription, a discharge from service, by reason of having furnished a substitute in the army, or a detailed transcript of employment in the government service.

Hereafter all certificates of exemption granted by enrolling officers will be sent to me for approval. All claims to exemption under the law must be made to the enrolling officer of the district, who will refer the application with his endorsement to me.

All persons who may be arrested after the call to rendezvous in the county to which they may belong, will be tried for desertion.

Certificates of exemption on account of disability will be signed by the examining board. E.D. Blake, Lt. Col. Confederate States Army, Commandant of Conscripts.

Chattanooga Daily Rebel, February 12, 1863

          12, Encouragement of self-reliance in Lincoln Bounty

Seasonable Suggestion.

The price that everything now bears ought to be an inducement to farmers to raise all the produce they can the ensuing season. Now is the time to make provision for the pitching of the next crop. Let the old men and little boys pitch in; and girls, if you have no spinning and weaving to do, you can lead a helping hand – it will not hurt you, and when this war is over you shall have a hero for a husband.

Fayetteville Observer, February 12, 1863.

12, Seed Scarcity in Fayetteville

Garden Seeds –

People who have been in the habit of using Landreth's or the Shaker Garden Seeds, will not have to be supplied here at home, as the Northern supply is cut off. Those having any for sale would do well, we think, to deposit them with some merchant for sale, in order that the community may be supplied.

Fayetteville Observer, February 12, 1863.

          12, Report on the Army Police Proceedings

Army Police Proceedings.

Before the Chief of Army Police, Nashville, Feb. 11.-- Susan Brinkley, Martha Brinkley, and Mary Brown were arrested under a charge of attempting to pass the lines with a forged pass. These cases are constantly occurring. The danger attending such attempts may be seen from the following section of a military order now in force:  "If any person, male or female, black or white, shall attempt to evade the picket line, or pass, or attempt to pass said line without proper authority, they will be dealt with as spies; and upon any effort on their part to escape arrest they will be shot on the spot."  Case not yet disposed of.

Nashville Dispatch, February 12, 1863.




          12, John Wilkes Booth in Nashville

The distinguished tragedian, J. Wilkes Booth, takes his farewell benefit to-night, his engagement closing the following evening. The entertainment will commence with Shakespeare's tragedy, "the Merchant of Venice," and close with "Catherine and Petruchio," a Shakespearean comedy. In the former, Mr. Booth appears as Shylock; in the latter as petruchio. [sic] The pieces have been well cast, and we may expect them to be produced in the most brilliant style.

Mr. Booth came amongst us a stranger, his reputation as a rising star having preceded him, creating a general desire amongst our playgoers to get a "taste of his quality." His first night was a splendid ovation; the theater being densely packed, every foot of standing room occupied, and numbers sent away unable to get in. Nobly did he fulfill expectations, and establish himself as a favorite. Every succeeding performance has been a repetition of his successes. In no part has he failed. His genius appears equal to anything the tragic muse has produced; and the time is not too distant when he will attain the high niche of professional fame. His engagement here will not soon be forgotten by any who have attended the theatre, and the records of that establishment will transmit it to those who follow after him as the best played here during the most eventful of dramatic seasons.We expect to see the house literally overflowing to-night. Gentlemen with ladies should make it a point to go early to be sure of seats.[11]

Nashville Daily Union, February 12, 1864.


Gen. GRANT occupied a private box at the theatre[12] last evening, and witnessed the performance until its close. Both theatres are doing a smashing business. Mr. BOOTH terminated a successful engagement at the old theatre on Saturday night last, and Miss AVONIA JONES did the same thing at the new theatre.

New York Times, March 26, 1864


          12, Scout on Sevierville Road

HDQRS. SECOND Brig., DIV., TWENTY-THIRD CORPS, South side Holston, near Knoxville, February 12, 1864. Capt. E. R. KERSTETTER, Asst. Adjt. Gen., 3d Div., 23d Corps, Knoxville, Tenn.:

CAPT.: I have the honor to report that I have had the Sevierville road scouted to-day 6 miles out. No enemy met with. From information gathered by the scouts, and from citizens who have come into our lines, I learn that the enemy fell back yesterday to Therman's Cross-Roads, 12 miles from here.

All agree in stating that the force was large, and composed exclusively of cavalry. The advance I should judge to have been for the purpose of reconnoitering the positions and strength of our forces on this side the river.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,



Forwarded to major-general commanding corps.

February 11 and 12, the rebel force on the Sevierville road were cavalry, and have retreated through Haynes' Gap, 230 men. The rebels have burned the fortifications and evacuated Strawberry Plains. Rebel citizens are leaving the Plains with the army. Rebel picket 2 miles this side of Rocky Valley meeting-house.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. II, pp. 381-382.

          12, Confederate scout and flag of truce near Flat Creek [see February 13, 1864, Scout near Knoxville below]

          12, Excerpt from the letter of R. T. Van Wyck, 150th New York Volunteer Infantry, relating the death of two Federal soldiers at the hands of a guerrilla band near Tullahoma in early February 1864

Normandy, Tenn.

Feb. 12th '64

Dear Mother,


The three companies have returned from their foraging excursion to levy that tax upon a County where three men were shot by guerrillas not long since. Upon returning and within a short distance from Tullahoma, and as two soldiers of our Reg't George Lovelace and John Odell were alone in advance of the Reg't, they were attacked by a party of twenty guerrillas and were found shot as their comrades came up. Their bodies were brought up with the Reg't today. What course will be pursued next seems undetermined as the Col. feels concerned, as it reflects some discredit on his command of the party….

With much love I remain your afft. Son

R.T. Van Wyck


          12, "Knoxville is now covered with dead mules, horses, cows, calves, dogs, oxen and men The men are supposed to be burried but there they lay some with their feet, others with their faces and some with nearly their whole from exposed God forbid that I should ever be burried in such a place." Excerpts from Ira Conine's letter to Jennie

Knoxville Tenn

Feb, 12.. /64

Miss Jennie

Yours of Jan, 30.. was recieved yesterday had'nt heard from you before since I received yours of Dec 1st I really thought you had given me up entirely But I guess you think of me once in a while yet I am glad your school is so near out perhaps you will have time to write oftener I can't begin to get along with one letter a month ---"not if you have time to write oftener"

I sent of few lines to you by Anderson on his return I want you to send me a great long, long, letter and don't forget to enclose your Photograph now I shall look for it now please dont disappoint me --- I recieved a letter from mother Wednesday answered it last night first letter I have got from her since I left home how is'nt it to bad my letters certainly do not come through or you are all getting verry slack about writing and I cant think you are ---- well here is the mail again and I must look for an anther letter --- the mail is distributed and behold another letter from Jennie dated Jan 14 and a good letter it is too dont care now how long the war lasts nothing does a soldier as much good as to recieve a letter from home or from some intimate friend Jennie if I could recieve a letter from you every day I dont believe I would be satisfied I would then want to see you But God knows this wicked Rebellion cant last always Oh! Then what joy there will be It will be equal to that great day when there shall be no more waiting or gnashing of teeth It is then we shall cease to hear the roar of cannon The rattle of musketry or the clashing of Bayonets; "God Speed the day"

Hell I presume Ham and Miss Apger do not feel so badly by this time as Anderson is home and they find him not dangerous by wounded: Anderson is a brave and noble boy and has so distinguished himself that he will never be forgotten by his comrades ---

You write that the 21st is home and mother wrote that Dillworth was married and dont say to whom? I wish when you write such things you would write the particulars I presume you are having gay times sleighing up there we dont go sleighing down here have no snow when we want to go any place here we walk or take a government wagon I would like to have attended some of you spellings like to happen in and spell down your school

You said you almost dreaded to hear from me afraid of hearing bad news I assure you if I have no good news to write I shall not write the bad You thought several times you would not hear from me again don't borrow any trouble on that account you will not get rid of me so easy of course I have seen some varry hard times since I left home but I have been well all the time and that is almost all a soldier need ask for good health is a great blessing but all are not blessed with it Smallpox is raging verry high here at present: There is not a day but the toll of the Death bell can be heard some poor soldier has gone the way of all the earth from some mortal wound or fever and often from homesickness There is a great deal of sickness here --- and is it any wonder the ground that was once green and beautiful around Knoxville is now covered with dead mules, horses, cows, calves, dogs, oxen and men The men are supposed to be burried but there they lay some with their feet, others with their faces and some with nearly their whole form exposed God forbid that I should ever be burried in such a place….

To be sure it is verry lonely here when you cant hear from home but dont flatter your self that we dont see nothing here but blue jackets and Rebs for there is some as pretty Lass's in Old Tennessee as ever the sun shone upon But as J.C. says They can chew tobacco and smoke I have had several say to me --- Why dont you neither chew tobacco or smoke? I tell them I never saw a woman smoke or chew tobacco till I came to Tennessee but that the women in the north get most Gloriously drunk very often; They think it must be awful to see a woman drunk think that is worse than chewing tobacco --- I tell them some awful yarns about the northern women and their habits Poor Sallie had to have both fingers taken off how lost she must feel without the use of her hand you say George and John Shaw have not gone in to the service yet neither will they go in if they know when they are well off

~ ~ ~

I remain ever yours

Ira B. Conine

Ira B. Conine Correspondence.

          12, Excerpt from the letter of R. T. Van Wyck, 150th New York Volunteer Infantry, relating the death of two Federal soldiers at the hands of a guerrilla band near Tullahoma in early February 1864

Normandy, Tenn.

Feb. 12th '64

Dear Mother,

~ ~ ~

The three companies have returned from their foraging excursion to levy that tax upon a County where three men were shot by guerrillas not long since. Upon returning and within a short distance from Tullahoma, and as two soldiers of our Reg't George Lovelace and John Odell were alone in advance of the Reg't, they were attacked by a party of twenty guerrillas and were found shot as their comrades came up. Their bodies were brought up with the Reg't today. What course will be pursued next seems undetermined as the Col. feels concerned, as it reflects some discredit on his command of the party….

With much love I remain your afft. Son

R.T. Van Wyck


          12, Confederate Civilians Expelled from Knoxville

Expulsion of Citizens from "Sujugated" Towns

The first installment of exiles from Knoxville has arrived at Atlanta, Ga., and is quartered in Washington Hall. There were about thirty persons in the lost, among them Rev. W. A. Harrison, a Presbyterian minister; Chas. McClung and wife, R. M. McPherson, wife and five children; R. H. Hogan, wife and two daughters; Mrs. Wilson and daughter; Dr, Goodlip, Mrs. Hamilton and two children, and others. These persons were ordered to leave town in forty-eight hours, as will be seen from the following order:

Office P.[rovost] M. [artial] Gen. E. T.

Knoxville, January 27th, 1864

Joseph Davenport:

Sir-On account of your persistent disloyalty to the Government of the United States, it has been decided to send you South, within the rebel lines. You are herby notifies to e at the railroad depot in time for the morning train to Loudon on Saturday next, prepared to leave permanently. As baggage you will be perjmitte4d to take you wearing apparel and the necessary blankets. You can also take some three or four days provisions

By Command of

Brig. Gen Carter, P. M. G. E. T.[13]

~ ~ ~

Daily Dispatch, February 12, 1864. [14]




[1] Not identified.

[2] This appears to mean that a mob of soldiers and/or civilians burned and looted Dover, or perhaps some nearby temporary settlement of sutlers and camp followers. A study of the Atlas indicates there was no nearby town. There is no reference to this in the OR, and so the matter remains unsubstantiated. After taking the fort Grant issued orders prohibiting such conduct:

GEN. ORDERS, No. 3. HDQRS. DIST. OF WEST TENNESSEE, Fort Donelson, February 18, 1862.

All commissioned officers, non-commissioned officers, and privates are prohibited from entering the town of Dover of any houses therein situated without permission in writing of their regimental commanders.

All captured property belongs to the Government, and no officer, non-commissioned officer, or private will be permitted to have or retain possession of captured property of any kind.

Any officer violating the above order will be at once arrested. Any non-commissioned officer or private will be arrested and confined in the guard-houses, and all captured property taken from them and turned over to the district quartermaster.

Col. Leggett is hereby appointed to see to the strict enforcement of the above, using his whole command for that purpose, if necessary.

By order of Brig.-Gen. Grant:

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 7, p. 633.

[3] McGavock

[4] Camargo is located in Northern Mexico, just south of the Rio Grande River. It was a supply base for the U. S. Army in the initial phases of the Mexican-American War (1846-1848). During the conflict Gideon J. Pillow, at best a military novice, was made a brigadier general by his good friend, erstwhile law partner and fellow Tennessean President James K. Polk. While stationed at Camargo Pillow directed the building of earthen fortifications which included a trench, or "ditches" as Heiman called them. Pillow's efforts amused West Point graduate, Lieutenant. Cadmus M. Wilcox, a qualified military engineer. Wilcox wrote of his encounter with Pillow's project: "While detained at Camargo I saw what was reported at the time in the newspapers as General Pillow's fortifications, with the ditch on the inside. Being recently from West Point, with our minds full of what the text books prescribed in such cases, I and my classmates were greatly amused, and one, Lieut. James Stuart, of South Carolina, mounted on a Texas mustang, and riding at a fast gallop, leaped both parapet and ditch." As cited in George Winston Smith and Charles Judah, eds., Chronicles of the Gringos: The U. S. Army In the Mexican War, 1846-1848; Accounts of Eyewitnesses and Combatants, (Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press, 1968) p. 24, from: Cadmus M. Wilcox, History of the Mexican War, ed. Mary R. Wilcox, (Washington: Church News Publishing Co., 1892), pp. 113-114. Thus, Pillow had built the fortifications backwards. The story of "Pillow's earthworks" must have been fairly well known, hence Heiman's satirical reference to ditches, etc. Moreover, the following story indicates Pillow's ineptitude for military fortifications was widely known: "Gen. Gilmore on Folly Island [S.C.]-A little incident has been told us which has not so far as we gave seen, found its way into the papers, and which is illustrative of the character of Gen. Gillmore. [sic] It appears that under the regime of Gen. Hunter, fortifications had been constructed on Folly Island-an ominous name, by the way. Instead of being on the north side of the island and pointing towards the rebel works, these fortifications on the Gen Pillow Plan - were on the south [sic] side and pointed directly away from the enemy! Gen Gilmore, on taking command, immediately visited the island and discovered how the landlay. Turning to one of his engineers he inquired: 'Have you got this island moving on a pivot?' There was no answer to the question, but the hit was appreciated, and Gen. Hunter's stronghold on the south side was neglected from that time." See: Nashville Daily Press for September 5, 1863.

[5] Jack Allen, Herschel Gower, eds., Pen and Sword: the Life and Journals of Randal W. McGavock, (Nashville: Tennessee Historical Commission, 1959), pp. 616-618.

[6] It is not certain just when Federal forces occupied Franklin, although it must at least have been some time close to the 12th of February. The occupation was apparently a temporary one.

[7] All spelling is as found.

[8] Probably "taffeta."

[9] The demolition of the "Senate" in 1886 prompted this informative and nostalgic newspaper item:

The Old "Senate" Gambling House Entirely Demolished To Make Room for the Structure of B. Lowenstein.

The Good Old Hurrah Days When Jefferson Street Was the Center of Pleasure and Dissipation.

Two historic buildings, one of them especially so from its associations and connections, are now being demolished to make room for the palatial store to be erected my Messrs. B. Lowenstein & Bros., at the corner of Main and Jefferson streets. That this well known firm should find it necessary to destroy two such large and substantial buildings in order to erect a larger and more modern and convenient one in which to conduct its enormous business is an evidence of the growth and prosperity of Memphis to which the enterprising Lowensteins have contributed in no small degree, and certainly none will be found to begrudge them the splendid business they at present enjoy. The building about which most interest centers, and that for some many years was one of the most notorious places in Memphis, or for that matter, in the Southern states, and which is today but a mass of ruins, was the old


on Jefferson street. What tales of dissipation, excitement, and fortunes lost and won by those mute walls could have told had they been permitted to speak before they were leveled by the mason's trowel! The four-story building known years ago as the Senate was built for a gambling house in 1856 by Messrs. Stoner & Breathitt, and Jack Grant was the contractor for the work. Those were the flush days which immediately followed the war, when everybody had a roll, and society was in a demoralized and disorganized condition, or, in other words, "everything went." The gambling firm who paid for the erection of "The Senate" spared neither pains, taste nor expense to make it the most magnificent place of the kind in the city. The ceilings were frescoed, the walls


and adorned with pictures of rare value, and the floors covered with the richest of carpets. The furniture was of the finest description and the side boards in the poker and faro rooms where the moneyed men and "high rollers" played, loaded with cut glass and silverware, and supplied with wines of the choicest vintage and liquors that would tickle the palate of a prince. It was the custom of those days for Memphis gambling houses to set a free lunch at midnight, and even yet there are old rounders here who, as they tackle their wienerwurst or tamala [sic] will tell you of the viands served hot and palatable by the white aproned waiters of "the Senate" as the principal gambling house [as] their headquarters, where they would go to blow in the wealth acquired in a crooked transaction on the outside, or to engage in a little game of diamond cut diamond among themselves. The city was alive with gamblers, and every steamer carried its regular quota, who would get all they could from the verdant passengers at short cards and then go against the game in the Senate. on such occasions


And the hundreds of dollars that changed hands in a single night would seem almost fabulous if spoken of now. There was also a restaurant in the Senate building, run by John Stack, where most of the gamblers took their meals, and a saloon run by Tony Cardona, where they took their drinks, or at least some of them. Land yet, despite the character of the building and the inmates, it was always an orderly place, and of the numerous tragedies enacted at a time when human life was held so cheap none of them occurred in the Senate, the only men ever killed in the building being when [sic] a negro slave killed another on one of the upper floors of the house in a personal row just before the war. Fights there were of course, but no great crime attaches to the old house just torn down.


But the Jefferson street of today, with its dingy houses and sleepy appearance, is not the Jefferson street of 1856-72. In those days it was the liveliest street in Memphis and no man had "done" the city properly until he had seen it. From Main to Fourth it was one blaze of gaslight after nightfall, and nearly all the principal drinking saloons, restaurants and houses of pleasure were located upon it. Two or three variety theaters held forth nightly, and music, dancing and general dissipation were always in order. It was a tough street, too, because that was a tough time, and many a man who allowed himself to drink too much or listened to a siren's voice woke up to find that he had been robbed. This state of affairs continued all during the war and for several years after, and continuously for twenty years the walls of the Senate [sic] echoed the click of chips and the hum of the roulette wheel, also


During these years the flash [sic] young men who depended upon chance for a living would seat themselves in the windows of the Senate or on the balconies in front and flirt with the actresses in Broom's Opera-house [sic] across the alley, or ogle the girls passing down the street on the other side. All was excitement and business, and Jefferson street the center of a booming city. About this time, in 186.., [sic] the Senate Building was sold under a decree of the chancery court, and brought $52,000 at public outcry. But in a few years the business began to drift south, the saloons and sports went with the tide, the Senate was left deserted, and so depreciated in value in 1880 or 1881, the Messrs. Lowensteins bought it for $8000, and it has since been used by them as a warehouse. Much of the former glory of the "Senate" remained to the last in the frescoing and painting, but now it has gone forever, with all its memories of the days when Memphis was one of the greatest sporting towns on the river – a very paradise of gamblers.

*  *  *

Daily Memphis Avalanche, September 26, 1886.

[10] The writer is probably referring to the inhabitants of Kamchatka, the peninsula of eastern Russia between the Sea of Okhotsk and the Bering Sea. It was first explored in the 18th century.

[11] Who knew?

[12] Somehow ironic as in less than a year Lincoln would be assassinated by Booth in a private box at Ford's Theater.

[13] The remainder of the article deals with expulsions of Confederates from Huntsville, Alabama.

[14] As cited in PQCW.


James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Editor, The Courier

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214


(615)-532-1549  FAX


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