Monday, May 31, 2010

Federal medical report relative to wounds suffered at the battle of Lookout Valley

Excerpt from the February 18, 1864, Federal medical report relative to wounds suffered at the battle of Lookout Valley

Report of Surg. Daniel G. Brinton, U. S. Army, Medical Director.

~ ~ ~
The case of Col. (now Brig.-Gen.) Underwood Thirty-third Massachusetts Volunteers, merits especial mention. A conical ball entered externally a few inches below the great trochanter, passed through the soft parts horizontally, fractured the upper third of the femur, passed out and into the dorsum of the penis, whence it, together with a piece of bone the size of a half pea, which it had carried with it, was extracted by Surgeon Hubbard. A few days after the affair he was taken to Nashville, and at the present writing, I am informed, the bone has united, the wound closed, and the general health good, though the injured leg is 4 inches shorter than before. The treatment was perfect rest, good diet, and an unmovable position of the wounded extremity.

I have the honor, sir, to remain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
D. G. BRINTON, Surgeon, U. S. Volunteers, Medical Director, Eleventh Corps.
Surg. GLOVER PERIN, U. S. Army, Medical Director.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 31, pt. I, p. 101.

Difficulties and disarray in recruiting for Tennessee's Confederate Volunteer ranks

May 28, 1861 - Difficulties and disarray in recruiting for Tennessee's Confederate Volunteer 
ranks, Isham G. Harris to L. P. Walker, Isham G. Harris to L. P. Walker


Hon. L. P. WALKER, War Department, Montgomery:

SIR: When I had the honor of addressing you on the 25th instant

Note 1 I flattered myself with the hope that I should experience no difficulty in inducing some four of our volunteer regiments already organized to muster into the
service of the Confederate States at once, and by that means secure the use of
the 4,000 guns you had the kindness to send me; but upon submitting the
proposition to any one of our regiments or companies I find many members
ready to be mustered into the service at once, but others objecting, and to
attempt to carry out the policy is to disorganize regiments and companies and
to a great extent demoralize the force now so necessary to the service of the
State and the Confederate States. This I am unwilling to do. Hence the
regiments-for the Confederate States must be raised for that especial purpose,
which will take some time, during which, under your order, the guns you sent
me are lying idle, while I have several thousand men organized and ready for
the field [already mustered into the service of the State], but unarmed, with a
powerful enemy menacing us every moment. If you can, consistent with your
sense of duty, relax the rule laid down in your dispatch of the 20th instant so far
as to allow me to put these guns into the hands of our State troops, I assure you
that they shall be withdrawn from them and placed in the hands of the
regiments raised for the Confederate States the moment these regiments are
raised and mustered in. Nothing short of the imperative necessity of the case
before me would induce me to trouble you with this request; but believing as I
do that it is a matter of the highest importance to the successful defense of the
Confederate States, as well as the State of Tennessee, I feel that it is a duty to
urge it.
Have the kindness to answer by telegraph.
I. G. H.
OR, Ser. IV, Vol. 1, pp. 358-359.

Memorial Day, Nashville, 1944

Nashville Tennessean, 5/31/44

Nashvillians Pay Tribute To War Dead In Ceremonies

Marine Pvt. Henry Thornton Orr, 20-year old veteran of the Marshall Islands assault, yesterday laid a wreath of flowers at the foot of the victory statue in War Memorial Court in honor of the marines who have fallen in this and past wars., Orr was among a number of representatives of national and local patriotic organizations who participated in Nashville’s annual Memorial Day services. Private Orr was wearing a borrowed dress uniform with staff sergeant chevrons.

[In the picture he is using crutches; he has one leg, and looks rather pensive.]

Story follows

Loyalty to Living Fighters Over World Pledged In Annual Memorial Day Program, Prayers Here

Hundreds of Nashvillians thronged to the War Memorial Building yesterday to pay tribute to America’s dead and to rededicate a pledge of loyalty to the living who are fighting in far-flung corners of the world today that such meetings may still be held.
Amid intermittent thundershowers, men, women and children made their annual pilgrimage to the memorial statues in War Memorial Court and prayers were offered at noon for the soldiers, sailors and marines who are now engaged in the greatest conflict in the history of the world.

Worshippers were reminded by Will R. Manier, Jr., presiding layman at the D-Day prayer service, that casualties will be great on invasion day and that “sorrow may come to our neighbors or even our own home.”

“Memory of the dead challenges those of us who would remember to [sic] noble resolutions,” approximately 500 500 civilians, service men and women were told at the American Legion’s afternoon  Memorial Day observation by Dr. John L. Hill, Baptist Sunday School Board editor, who added: “it is a good tome too resolve by own loyalty to deserved these sacrifices.”

Following through the general theme of professing gratitude to the living as well as the dead, Dr. John L. Ferguson, Belmont Methodist Church pastor, offered a prayer to the living: “O God, give to each one courage,” he said, “and help us to be truly grateful to those who have died that we may enjoy the great practices of freedom.”

Families of members of the armed forces stood silent and with heads bowed for one minute of united prayer.

At the close of the ceremony, representatives of a number of patriotic organizations marched in recessional from the auditorium to the outer court where wreaths were place ceremoniously at the foot of the memorial statue While the Nashville Army Air Center Band, directed by Chief W. O. Arthur Hoffman, played in the background, representatives from the following groups stepped to lay wreaths upon the statue:
American Red Cross, YMCA, YMHA, U. S Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, United Spanish 

American War Veterans and the Auxiliary, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the auxiliary, Salvation Army, Knights of Columbus, U. S. Navy Mothers, Disabled American Veterans and the Auxiliary, War Mothers, United Daughters of the Confederacy, War Dads, Women Marines, Sons of the American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary,, and American Legion Post 5.

Marine Places Wreath

Marine Pvt. Henry Thornton Orr, who lost his right leg in the battle for the Marshall Islands, laid a wreath of flowers at the food to the memorial statue on behalf of the U. S. Marine Corps. The 20-year old veteran of some of the fiercest fighting in this war hobbled forward on his crutches to place the flowers.

The Purple Heart and his campaign ribbons adorned the borrowed dress uniform hew wore. His mother, Mrs. J. M. Orr 1000 Linden Place accompanied him to the ceremony. Her eyes were misty as her young son stood on his one leg and leaned on his crutches to place the wreath at the shrine.

Orr lost his leg when a Jap sniper’s bullet exploded three hand grenades he carries in a pouch of his dungarees. He enlisted in the marine corps here in December, 1942, and went overseas in May, 1943.

Guard Fires Bullets

Marking the conclusion of the 76th annual memorial observation, Company A, 2nd Infantry, of the Tennessee State Guard, fired three rifle salutes from the foot of the memorial statue, and while Rabbi Bernard J. Starkoff pronounced the benediction six bombers from Smyrna Army Air Field flew over, dropping flowers into the court.
Immediately before the bombers appeared over the court, a wreath in memory of the 21 soldiers drowned on maneuvers in the Cumberland River last March was dropped into the river between the Woodland Street and Sparkman Street bridges.

War Production Goes On

Meanwhile, in Nashville, as well as other cities throughout the nation, war production centers-air craft factories and other plants producing tools and equipment for the nation’s fighting forces-were running at virtually full tilt and its workers reaffirming their determination to win one more war.

The spirit of the occasion yesterday seems to be summed up in words of Dr. Hill, who said:

“We must dedicate our thoughts today to the memory of those dead…the memory of them must renew our joys-joys of friendship, fellowship, and joys of sharing.”

Friday, May 28, 2010

Meeting of Colored Citizens - August 15, 1864

 “Meeting of Colored Citizens”

The meeting of the colored citizens of this vicinity, yesterday at Fort Gilliem, was very largely attended. The procession which passed through the streets was very large, composed in part of a great number of hacks, filled with well dressed people. The Band of the Tenth Tennessee favored them on their route to the grave with some spirited and excellent music. So far as we noticed, the behavior of the persons in the procession was orderly, and quiet, and void of offense to all except those who believe in the divine right of the peculiar institutions. The assemblage at the grove was immense.
Mrs. Langston [of Oberlin, Ohio], the appointed orator of the day, was, unfortunately, unable to attend, but some colored speaker, whose name we did not hear, is said to have made a patriotic and truly excellent discourse, which was listened to with profound attention.

Some excellent and appropriate remarks were made by Gen. Chetlain and Col. B.D. Mussey. Altogether, the affair was highly creditable to the colored people. They manifested a devotion to the Government which many white people in this city would do well to imitate. Had the miserable Legislature and Governor of Tennessee manifested a tithe of honesty, good breeding, good sense, and patriotism in 1861, which the colored people showed yesterday, Tennessee would not have called upon to mourn the death of 40,000 of her citizens.
Nashville (Daily Press&) Times, August 16, 1864.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


Avenges a Young Girl’s Ruin in Crockett County.

The quiet little inland town of Alamo was the scene of a terrible tragedy o­n Wednesday morning [12th]. Joseph K. Stalling, a merchant in the place, was shot and mortally wounded by Mr. Harris, and ex-sheriff of the county, his two sons and son-in-law named Burrus, the latter Stalling’s partner in business. The cause was the seduction of the daughter of Harris, whom stalling had been visiting for about two years. It was discovered that she was pregnant a few days ago, and Wednesday morning when Stalling went to his store the four men were lying in wait for him with guns and told him he must marry the girl. He agreed to this, saying such had been his intention, and o­ne of the men was dispatched for a license. During his absence, some words taking place, o­ne of the Harris boys becoming exasperated, fired o­n Stalling, the shot taking effect in his right breast. The others also fired; the wounded man fell and the assailants fled. The wound that will probably prove fatal is the o­nce first inflicted. At last accounts Stalling was still alive but had hardly any chance of recovering. He expressed the will that his property go to the young lady if she had no hand in the killing. Both parties are highly connected in Crockett county.

Brownsville Democrat.

Memphis Avalanche, May 15, 1886

Monday, May 3, 2010

No to the Draft in Civil War Tennessee


Documents demonstrating resistance to the Tennessee Draft in December 1861.

1, “It was Unnecessary;” editorial disapproval of Governor Harris’ military draft

We all feel … the vital importance of meeting the emergency in the spirit and strength of freemen, preferring death … to life in serfdom to our enemies. But, while admitting this truth, we cannot believe that these extraordinary reqirements attendant upon the existing war justify…draft upon the people as a means of increasing the strength of our armies. ….the purpose desired could no doubt sooner have been accomplished, without …. the lasting shame of a military draft….

Nashville Daily Gazette, December 1, 1861.

1, “Must the Odium Endure.”

To a people so free, so high toned, so intelligent, so liberal and so patriotic as the citizens of Tennessee,-to a people so thoroughly and entirely devoted to the promised escape from the Lincoln despotism, and so freely yielding their blood and treasure to the great cause of resistance to the black Republican tyranny sought to be imposed upon the states of the South,-to a people so sensible of their rights as freemen, and so confident of their ability to sustain their late action in revolutionising [sic] against the old Federal government, and entering upon a new state of political existence,-nothing could be more mortifying, nothing more humiliating than an attempt upon the part of their authorities to fix upon them the eternal odium of drafting their citizens into the military service. No wonder, then, that our people are next to dumb with astonishment at the high handed outrage upon their constitutional rights, at the broad innovation upon a former usage, and at the direct question of their courage and patriotism, perpetrated and implied in late orders of the Governor of Tennessee. No wonder that in all quarters and among all classes of people, irrespective of politics and conditions, there is but one opinion-and that deeply and severely condemnatory-of this threatened compulsion and disgrace of those who, once had occasion to pride themselves upon being citizens of the “Volunteer State.” Let this threat be executed and Tennessee falls forever from her high estate, and her citizens and soldiers are doomed to the eternal and damning disgrace of having a forced soldiery in the field. Let it be carried out as threatened, and the name of Tennessean will no longer be desirable, but rather a thing to be avoided and desecrated. Draft the people of Tennessee, and the name of the present Executive of the State, Isham G. Harris, [sic] becomes forever infamous, and justly a by-word and a reproach. Draft the people of and henceforth no citizen or soldier of hers can with pride lift up his head in the proud consciousness that the hails from the “Volunteer State.” Draft the people of Tennessee, and all her patriotism and liberality have been expended in vain to give her respectability of position in the new sisterhood of States Draft the people of Tennessee, and her soldiers become forever the subjects of ridicule and derision. Is there no escape from this high handed attempt to engulph [sic] a free and brave people of the State in a sea of unfathomable ruin?

Nashville Daily Gazette, December 1, 1861.

3, “Volunteering;” complaints about Governor Harris’ draft in Giles County

The last call of the Governor for volunteers has been nobly responded to in this county-more than half the militia stepped forward as volunteers, and are now organizing themselves into companies, ready for marching orders.

This county was entitled to a credit for four companies, viz.,: Capt. Winstead’s, Capt. Hanna’s, Capt. Hundicutt’s, and Capt. Worley’s which recently went into camp from this county: but it seems the Militia officers were ignorant of this fact, and have therefore required half the remaining militia to go into the field. This does gross injustice to the liberal and patriotic people of Giles, and leaves her women and children almost defenseless. We call upon the proper authorities to have this matter investigated and corrected immediately.

Pulaski Citizen, as cited in the Nashville Daily Gazette, December 3, 1861.

3, Militia companies in Palmyra and the fight at Cousin Sally Dillard’s.

Last Tuesday [3rd], we made a flying trip to Palmyra….Some people are disposed to doubt the courage of the militia, but that doubt would have been removed could they have seen the fight we saw-a real fisty-cuff-between a small militiaman and one nearly double his size. Big militiamen cried-Hold! enough! “ and little militiaman was pulled off, and so ended the fight “at Cousin Sally Dillard’s.”

Clarksville Chronicle, December 6, 1861.

4, “A Weak Invention;” one editor’s support for resisting Governor Harris’ draft

Some of those who set themselves up as the apologists of the drafting party, use the argument that Gov. Harris, in making this extreme demand upon the people of his State, was governed by the advice and counsel of those higher in authority than himself. We may justly denominate this a week invention of the Governor’s friends to shield him from the storm of public indignation now breaking above his head. Even were the dangers of the times an hundred fold greater than they really are, the fact would not afford sufficient excuse of the suicidal policy adopted by Gov. Harris in regard to the militia of Tennessee.-Had all the Governors of the Confederate States united with President Davis and General Johnston in asking that Tennessee should be the first State in the Confederacy to submit to the disgrace of military conscription, the demand should have been sternly resisted. This is to-day the sentiment of an immense majority of the people of Tennessee. Regarding this draft as a disgraceful blot upon the fair reputation of the State-a stab wantonly and unnecessarily inflicted-her citizens are hardly in the mood, we take it, for granting pardon to the principal author of the evil, upon any such trifling plea of innocence. The Governor was the guardian, How can they, then, think he acted in good faith, if he had not the manliness to answer to the demand, no matter from what quarter it came, to make conscripts of those who had, time after time, honored him with their suffrages, their confidence, and their trusts?

Nashville Daily Gazette, December 4, 1861.

4, The Nashville Daily Gazette objects to Governor Harris’ plan to draft the militia into the Confederate army

The Nashville Daily Press.

Ours, it seems, is the only daily Nashville paper which does not approve the course adopted by Gov. Harris for the purpose of getting additional Tennessee troops into the field. The Union and American, the Patriot, and the Banner – “Tray, Blanch and Sweetheart” - yelp out high sounding praises of the course his Excellency has seen proper to pursue in order to remind Tennesseans that he desired a given number of them to turn their attention immediately to military matters. At this parade of our city contemporaries against the position we have assumed in regard to the force measures of our Chief Executive, we are neither astonished nor mortified. The Gazette is not unused to advocating alone measures subsequently endorsed by the people. For some time, alone, so far as the Nashville press was concerned, it advocated resistance to Black Republican rule. For a longer time, it can, alone, if necessary, contend for the modification of abuses, whether internal or external.

Towards its contemporaries who disagree with its assumptions against abuses of official prerogatives or other public wrongs, it can afford to be charitable. Before this irresistible tide of popular opinion they have followed us on former occasions. By virtue of the same force, they may imitate our examples again.

Nashville Daily Gazette, December 4, 1861

5, “A Mistaken Haste;” anti-draft editorial from the Memphis Argus.

It must be admitted that, as far as this city is concerned, the late militia call by the Governor, made as it was and when it was, has by no means increased confidence in his wisdom nor respect for the cause, and this simply because the first order in connection with the matter, were misunderstood by our people, and for this misunderstanding Governor Harris must of necessity stand responsible. A mere order, unaccompanied by explanations, is right in a military leader; but it will never be willingly obeyed when it affects a man’s private business, denies him the right of exercising his own will, and requires of him the risking of life, liberty and property, intones so autocratic that the Czar of Russia might envy them. For whatever ill effect, morally, the cause has sustained through his excellency’s haste, as well as for the diminution of public confidence in his wisdom, he can blame but himself, and those who, after the surprise at Belmont, spread, of sought to spread, a wholly unfounded alarm through this community.

We are sorry the affair was so miserably managed, and the more sorry that his excellency’s real desires, and the wise ideas which he wished to realize by the call might have been gratified and realized without having caused a single murmur from any honest Southern man. Our men, women and children, our servants, will peril, will sacrifice their all in this quarrel, and think it but their duty. The Governor knows this, and is himself, probably, as true and brave a ruler as ever sat in our gubernatorial chair. Misunderstandings will occur between the best intentioned friends. Let us forget this one, forgive, and see how many of us are needed and can be used to effect, and just so many can and will be ready and proud to march for good old Tennessee.

--Memphis Argus.

Nashville Daily Gazette, December 4, 1861.

6, Report of a draft riot in Nashville [see December 12, 1861. “Report of negative reactions to the Confederate draft in Nashville ca. December 6, 1861” below]

“A riot occurred at Nashville, Tenn., Occasioned by the authorities resorting to drafting soldiers to supply the rebel army. The boxes used for this purpose [i.e., “draft lottery”] were broken up, and during the excitement two persons were killed and several wounded. Governor Harris was forced to keep his room, and was protected by a strong guard.”

New York Times, December 8, 1861.

6, “What is Needed.”

The militia of Tennessee need drilling. They never did and never will need drafting. Soldiers and the sons of soldiers may be long continued devotion to the pursuits of peace grow rusty in the science of war. The same cause cannot however, impair their patriotism. The idea that they need the threat of compulsion to make them volunteers is new and novel, and he who entertains it is a slanderer. The Governor of the State makes the threat, thus degrading his position and seeking to disgrace the people who elevated him to it.

Nashville Daily Gazette, December 6, 1861.

7, Observation by an L&N railroad agent on difficulties with raising troops in the Volunteer State

Mr. A. B. Barker, the well known railroad agent, arrived from Nashville, Tenn., last evening having left that place on Saturday, the 23d inst. He made his way to this city with much difficulty, as he was a well known Union man, and was unable to obtain a pass from the rebel authorities. Mr. Barker has resided in Nashville during the past two years, and as he was immediately connected with the Louisville and Nashville Railroad up to the time of his departure, enjoyed fine opportunity for observing the movements of the army in that quarter.

It will be remembered that Gov. Harris, of Tennessee, made a requisition a few month’s ago for thirty thousand men and additional arms. The call met with no response whatever, and the authorities were compelled to resort to a draft in order to fill the requisition. The work of drafting commenced in Nashville the day of his departure.

He estimates the number of rebel troops between Nashville and Bowling Green at twenty eight thousand. He assures us that they are miserably fed and badly clothed, and that there is a great deficiency in the matter of arms. Many of them, too, are ill, and he thinks there are fully three thousand five hundred sick soldiers in Nashville alone.

No attention is given to the payment of the troops, and the soldiers have so accustomed to that sort of neglect, that they do not expect to receive remuneration for their services, being but to glad if they can obtain sufficient subsistence to keep their souls and bodies together. Alluding to the case of Harry Duvall, of this city, in this arms connection he says, he says that Harry arrived from Richmond a few days ago with sixteen dollars in his pocket, the remainder of seven hundred dollars which he carried with him from this city to the Confederacy. Harry has no command now and no employment.

Mr. Barker was familiar with many of the boys who left this city and joined the rebel army, and relates some amusing episodes in their histories down there. He says that Blanton Duncan has fallen into disgrace there, having given up the pursuit after military fame and adopted gambling as a profession.

Louisville Daily Journal, December 7, 1861.

12, Report of negative reactions to the Confederate draft in Nashville ca. December 6, 1861. [see ca. December 6, 1861, “Report of a draft riot in Nashville above]

The Louisville Correspondent of the Cincinnati Gazette writes, under date of the twelfth of December, 1861, the following facts relative to the attempt of the Tennessee authorities to draft soldiers:

“I have news from Nashville to the sixth [Dec. 6th]. Indignation of Gov. Harris’ orders to raise troops by draft from the militia was intense, even among the secessionists. The Daily Gazette denounced it in unmeasured terms, declaring that it was worse than Lincoln’s call for men to ‘subdue the South.’ In the fourth ward of Nashville, Capt. Patterson refused to obey orders for conscription, but was afterward forced to obedience by a threat of court-martial. In South-Nashville, on the second inst., a mob of more than one hundred men rushed upon the Governor’s officers, and broke up the boxes used in drafting. A fight ensued between the Confederate officers and the people, in which two persons were killed and ten or twelve wounded.

“Gov. Harris was compelled to keep his room at the St. Cloud up to the time my informant left, under strong guard, for fear of assassination by the incensed people. He had received many anonymous letters threatening his life. Col. Henry Calibourne, of the militia, was also afraid to show his head on the streets.

“The writer further states that J. O. Griffith, financial proprietor of the Nashville Union and American, original secessionist, and Hugh McCrea, an Irish original secessionist, were among those drawn for militi[a] service. There wholesale dry goods merchants, Alfred Adams, Tom Fife, and W. S. Akin, had also been selected to shoulder the musket. Some wealthy persons offered as high as two thousand dollars for substitutes.”

Cincinnati Gazette, December 12, 1861.[1]

21, The character of war in East Tennessee and resistance to the Confederate draft in Nashville

From Tennessee.

Intestine war, with savage ferocity on the part of the rebels, now rages in Tennessee. The statements are confused and doubtless exaggerated, but too much is true.

The city of Nashville was in high state of excitement on the 6th, and on the following day an attempt was made to draft the citizens into the army. The indignation of the people was intense. A riot broke out in the Fourth ward. Four policemen were shot dead. The mob rushed to the Capitol to attack Governor Harris, who fled to Memphis. On the same day, 2,500 men from Louisiana passed the city for Kentucky, carrying a black flags embellished with a skull and cross bones. They were mostly armed with shot guns.

On the 1st of this month a band of Union men from Williamsburg, Kentucky marched.

Atlanta Democrat, December 21, 1861.

[1] As cited in Rebellion Record, Vol. 4. p. 25.