Thursday, June 30, 2011

June 30 - July 4 - Notes on the Civil War in Tennessee

30, Skirmish at Morning Sun [a.k.a. Rising Sun [1]]
JUNE 30, 1862.--Skirmish at Rising Sun, Tenn.

No. 1.--Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, U. S. Army, commanding District of West Tennessee.
No. 2.--Col. William Mungen, Fifth-seventh Ohio Infantry.

No. 1.
Report of Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, U. S. Army, commanding District of West Tennessee.
MEMPHIS, July 1, 1862.

My particular anxiety has been to get cavalry to capture and drive off Jackson's, Forrest's, and Jeff. Thompson's bands, that are depredating so much. The only danger I fear is of a raid being made into the City and burning a part of it. Breckinridge is said to be southeast of here, but I do not know this to be so and do not credit his being nearer than Abbeville.

The wagon train sent in by Gen. Sherman was attacked yesterday afternoon at Rising Sun. A stampede among the mules ensued, and eight of the wagons were broken to pieces and the mules ran into the woods and were not recovered. The rebels were whipped off, with a loss of 13 killed and wounded picket up on the field, and 12 wounded men reported to have been carried to a neighboring house, but were not seen by our men. Loss on our side 3 wounded and 8 teamsters and a wagon-master missing. I telegraphed this to Gen. Sherman on the statement of a wagon-master who came through. His statement only differs from the colonel's commanding the escort in not knowing much about the rebel loss.
I have detained at the river a regiment of Wallace's division intended to re-enforce Col. Fitch, expecting an answer to my telegram of last evening.

U. S. GRANT, Maj.-Gen.

Report of Col. William Mungen, Fifty-seventh Ohio Infantry.
HDQRS. FIFTY-SEVENTH Regt. OHIO VOL. INFANTRY, Moscow, Tenn., July 5, 1862.

GEN.: I have the honor to report that, in obedience to orders from headquarters, I proceeded with 240 men [including officers and musicians] to escort the division train of 67 wagons to Memphis and back again to Moscow. That portion of the Fifty-seventh Ohio Volunteer Infantry detailed for this purpose was in motion at 3 o'clock a. m. on Monday, June 30, 1862. The train and escort took the Macon road from Moscow pursuant to orders. This road passes through Macon, Fisherville, and near Morning Sun [i.e., Rising Sun] to Memphis. Evidences and indications were abundant in the morning that the rebels were watching the train and awaiting a favorable opportunity to attack us, and from wounded rebels we afterward learned that it was their first intention to attack us at Macon, but they did not get up in time. They were next going to attack us at Fisherville, but their courage failed them.
When within about one mile of the Memphis and Nashville State road we were notified that a large body of the cotton-burning cavalry was ahead and would attack the train. I immediately ordered the main portion of the troops to the advance, and proceeded cautiously until we arrived at the Memphis and Nashville road, where we had to turn to the left.

Some circumstances-one of which was a man getting into a buggy at Morning Sun [i.e., Rising Sun], half a mile east of us, and driving off furiously-induced me to anticipate an immediate attack. This man, I subsequently learned, was Col. Porter, of the cotton-burning thieves, who holds a commission in the rebel army.

At the turn of the road two companies of my command, Capt.'s Wilson and Faulhaber, under charge of the former, were left to repulse or hold in check any rebels who might approach. The train kept moving onward until its center had reached the turn of the road before spoken of, when a body of rebel cavalry, 200 strong, charged furiously upon the column from the north, while simultaneously with this movement another body of the same kind of troops, of from 120 to 150, charged on the right of our rear. Companies G and B, Capt.'s Wilson and Faulhaber, poured a well-directed fire into the enemy, which caused them to seek shelter in the woods. The charging and firing together, but principally the firing, caused a stampede among the mule teams, many of which became unmanageable and quite a number of wagons were upset-among them the one in which Thomas C. Currie and the six guards I had placed over him were, and I regret to say that in the confusion consequent upon the stampede Currie escaped. Two of the guards are missing, and supposed to be taken prisoner. The wagon was located near the center of the train, which was about three-fourths of a mile long.
As soon as the firing commenced the troops in advance, with the exception of a small guard, were ordered back to the scene of action on double-quick, which order was obeyed with alacrity. Just before the advance guard reached the center the rebels showed themselves in force in a field on the rear of our right wing. The column was halted, faced by the rear rank, and a volley fired, which drove the rebels again to the wood. Shortly, however, they rallied, keeping farther from us, and attempted to attack and stampede the head of the train. Companies A, F, and D, First Lieut. McClure and Capt.s May and Morrison commanding, were sent again forward with rapidity to frustrate the rebel designs, which they accomplished satisfactorily.

The scene of action then turned to the ground in the vicinity of the point of intersection of the Macon and Nashville and Memphis roads. The rebels occupied the woods immediately north of the said point, and also the ground on the south side of the Memphis and Nashville road and east of the Macon road. Lieut.-Col. Rice was placed in command of the troops on the left wing, occupying the south of the Macon road, and advancing, drove the enemy entirely from the rear of the train, while with a portion of the right wing deployed as skirmishers and another portion to support them I scoured the woods on the north of the road, driving the rebel cavalry before us until they were forced into the open plantation, or cleared land, surrounding Morning Sun [i.e., Rising Sun]. They passed around the village, turning to the south and passing in sight of our troops but nearly three-fourths of a mile distant. As soon as they got into the open ground the stampede became nearly as great among them as it had previously been among the mules. About 100 of them, as above stated, fled in the greatest precipitancy [sic] to the northeast, while a greater proportion of them fled to the south, passing in front of our left wing, receiving the fire of that portion of the regiment under the command of Lieut.-Col. Rice. It will be remembered that in our firing we faced by the rear rank during a great part of the action.

This ended the fighting, except a few shots fired at straggling rebels, but at such distance that it is not probable that they produced any effect. At the time Lieut.-Col. Rice was placed in command of the left wing it appears that a majority of the rebels were in his front.
We had 6 wagons damaged by the stampede of the mules, the poles or tongues of three of them being broken, the coupling, or reach, of another broken, the rounds of the front wheels of another, and some part of the running gear of the other injured. We lost 31 mules and a few sets of harness, a portion of the harness being cut by the rebels whose horses had been killed or disabled in the action, who took the mules to ride off in their haste to get beyond the reach of our guns.

The rebel loss, as nearly as can be ascertained, was 9 killed and 18 wounded; a total of 27. I have heard from rebel sources since the action that 21 were found lying on the field the day after the fight, which, if true, would swell the rebel loss to 37 killed and wounded. The attack was made upon us between 5 and 6 p. m. on the 30th of June, A. D. 1862. We killed and disabled 6 rebel horses and captured 5 more.

I cannot speak too highly of the conduct of the officers and men of the Fifty-seventh Ohio Regt. on that occasion.
Lieut.-Col. Rice distinguished himself, as did Capt. Wilson. In short, the entire regiment, or that portion of it present as an escort, could not have behaved better had they been veterans, for every officer and man seemed only anxious to do his duty, and no sign of fear or faltering was exhibited.

On our way from Memphis to Moscow returning we were watched closely by Jackson's cavalry. At Germantown Col. Grierson kindly furnished an escort of 60 good cavalry, under command of Capt. Boicourt. They accompanied us as far as La Fayette. Our advance guard saw rebel cavalry frequently on the way, but they did not attack us.

Very respectfully submitted by your obedient servant,
W. MUNGEN, Col., Comdg. Fifty-seventh Regt. Ohio Vol. Infantry.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. I, pp. 14-16.

[1] Morning [or Rising ] Sun was located north of Colliersville, east of Randolph, in Shelby County. There was a U.S. Post Office there from 1830 to 1869. There does not appear to have been a place named "Rising Sun," in Tennessee. Certainly is easy to understand how the morning sun, which is always on the rise, could be confused with a rising sun. There is and was a "Rising Sun" community and "Rising Sun Church" in Knox County. See Omni Gazetteer of the United States of America Eleven Volumes, Vol. 4 (Omngraphics, Detroit MI, 1991), p. 123.


30, Bad weather and picket guard duty in Memphis: an excerpt from George Hovey Cadman's letter home
* * * *
We are having awful weather out here now nothing but storms and such ones you never saw in your life. I went on picket Guard [sic] last Friday evening and the way the rain came down was a caution. From six in the evening till 7 in the morning it came down without any intermission, and such rain! I never was in a country where the rain fell so easy, it is no trouble at all it just falls as if it had noting else to do. We had nothing to do but stand and take it for we had not a bit of shelter. I was never so wet in my life. Next morning a gentleman cam along and was thoughtful enough to bring us a bottle of Whisky I tell you it went good. I was searcher and an Irishman came along with 2 gallons of Whisky some time after, and was pretty fast. His permit called for 2 gallons and he never had the kindness to offer us a drop. I thought I would be even with him so I had to taste to make sure it was the right sort. Of course I could not pretend to form a judgment by myself so had to call in assistance and had all tasted, we allowed it might be right and let it pass. We have some queer customers sometimes. We had an awful accident occur yesterday in our Quarters. A gun went off by accident, and the ball after passing through two tents a knapsack full of boys clothes passed through the side of one of the boys in our company, and then right through his leg. I don't know whether he will recover.
I cannot write you a long letter today as I have t go on Grand Guard this evening hoping this will find you quite well I remain your
Affectionate Husband
G.H. Cadman
George Hovey Cadman letters


            1, Resisting the work of the Public Health Office in Memphis

"Communications from the people"

Health Office, Gayoso Hotel

Memphis, Tenn., July 1st, 1864

Editor of the Bulletin:

The citizens of this city now, that the Health Office is established, have settled down to the conviction that they have nothing to do but stand by and looking on, thinking the Health Offices capable of renovating the city independent of outside assistance or aid and yet when the Health Department endeavors of itself to find out the location and persons who are guilty of committing nuisance, the citizens seek to hide the offender, and the matter is kept closed. Thus the very means that should be most active in the cleansing out and bringing to light these nuisances are perfectly inactive, and the Health Office is blamed for non-performance of duty, and the offender is found, and punished, it is then blamed for the vigorous measures used; and the labors of the Health Office is stunted [sic] at the very start. The police to discover the exact location of a nuisance are obliged to search a person's premises as though they were hunting some criminal, and if detected some person is blamed for reporting the case, thus encouraging the accumulation of filth, and as a natural consequence the increase of disease.

Person reporting a nuisance at the Health Office, after elaborating on the evil of having said nuisance was found, are sure to close their report, with an earnest injunction to the Health Commissioner, not to report their names, in connection with the nuisance, as if the idea was a stigma to their names and character, in the least, as a neighbor and citizen.

How it is the interest as well as the duty of ever citizen to keep his or her premises free from everything that would tend, in the least, to engender disease.

Orders have been repeatedly issued, and the Health department has worked well and faithful to bring the city up to a standard of cleanliness, and already, notwithstanding the warm weather at hand, the effects of the labor performed, may be seen in the decrease of the number of deaths of the citizens.

Yet. The citizens will manifest the disposition of "dog in the manger;" they won't remove the nuisance themselves, and seek to hide it from those who will.

This is the cause of the issuing of stringent orders which must and will be carried out to the very letter.

How every person is held responsible for the cleanliness of his premises, and the street or alley in front of his premises, and it should be his duty to see that not only his dwelling, but the street, alley and gutter were kept clean, and free from obstructions each day; for the latter is as essential to his health as the former. He should also have his outhouse well cleaned and limed; and were all in the habit of doing this they would not only add encouragement to the Health Department, and give it a new impetus, but would bring their city up to that standard of cleanliness so necessary to public health and prosperity.

W. Underwood, Health Commissioner

Memphis Bulletin, July 2, 1864.

            2, Martial orders relative to prohibition of liquor sales, protection of Union flag, possession of firearms. restrictions upon lewd women and theft in Memphis

I. The guard stationed in will have the utmost vigilance to discover the parties who are in the habit of selling intoxicating liquors in defiance of orders. Persons found guilty of violations...will be at once arrested, his liquor of business closed....This order applies on steamboats as well as the city.

II. The insulting or accosting of loyal citizens will no longer be tolerated under any circumstances. Union citizens who have placed the American flag over their houses will be protected....the Provost Guard are instructed to shoot down anyone who may attempt to remove the flag or molest the owner of the premises.

III. [Those without permission to carry firearms will] be placed in closed confinement. [Only police may carry firearms.] The members of the Police are required to report themselves immediately to this office and register their names, stating the number of the ward where they perform police duty.

IV. Lewd women are prohibited from conversing with soldiers on duty; nor will they be allowed to walk the streets after sunset. Anyone of the class indicated who shall violate this order will be conveyed across the river, and will not be allowed to return within the limits of the city.

V. Some unknown person, representing himself as "Capt. J.K. Lindsey, Co. K, 43d Ill. Vol. has committed several depredations by entering private houses and taking private property, giving a receipt for same, under the pretense that he is acting by authority of the Provost Marshal. [remainder illegible]

Memphis Union Appeal July 2, 1862[1]

            2, "The First Duty of our Authorities," a plea for public sanitation in Memphis

We hope that our public officers will at once recognize the necessity for prompt sanitary precautions to prevent the outbreak of epidemic diseases in our city. The weather during a portion of the day is excessively hot, averaging 90 degrees in the shade, and with an unusually large population, many of whom are crowded into badly ventilated residences, and have few needful opportunities for bathing or cleanliness, there is danger that, with the utmost care by our authorities, there may be an unusual number of diseases during the present summer and fall, and this danger will be alarmingly greater if measures are not promptly taken to remove the abounding sources of malarious and other poisons. Our streets are, perhaps, not as thoroughly clean as they should be, but our greater danger is from the collections of bilge and stagnant water along our wharf. To this subject attention is specially directed, as immediate action may prevent much loss of life.

Memphis Bulletin, July 2, 1864.

            3, Report to the Southern Mothers' Association Executive Committee


To the Executive Committee of the Southern Mothers:

Having been elected by you on the 7th of June, as surgeon of the institution under your charge, I immediately entered upon the discharge of my duties, and herewith have the honor to submit to you this, my first monthly report:

Number discharged 52, sent to private houses 25, in the wards 27, died 2. total 106.

Diseases—Diarrhea 11, dysentary 6, neuralgia 3, constipation 1, contusion 3, fatigue and exposure 9, measles 2, gun shot 3, opthalmia 1, pneumonia 19, intermittent 42, ptyalism 2, congestive chill 2, abcess 1, cut with bowie-knife 1. Total 106.

Of these there were from army of Tennessee 14, Missouri troops 1, 2d Arkansas regiment 91. Total 106.

In examining the above list of diseases, it will be seen that nearly twenty per cent. have been pneumonia. The causes of this are readily explained by the facts attending the trip of the 2d Arkansas regiment, colonel T. C. Hindman, commanding, to Knoxville and back. These troops, fresh from the back woods of Arkansas, unaccustomed to excitements, and actuated by the loftiest patriotism, thought it incumbent upon them to cheer at each flag station, village and town upon the road, both going and coming, until their bronchias became inflamed in the highest degree.

In addition to this, the dust and cinders, the open cars, the heat of the days, the cold nights, the sudden change of the weather while in East Tennessee, insufficient clothing, the want of blankets, and sleeping on the damp earth, rendered their trip everything but one of pleasure. Hence our rooms were filled on their return with fully developed cases of pneumonia. None are so classified that did not present several of the characteristic symptoms and phenomena of the disease. In addition to there, nearly all the cases of intermittent were more or less accompanied with congestion and pleuritic affections of the lungs.

In view of the number of patients and the character of the disease, it affords me pleasure to state that only two have so far proved fatal, and that there is only one man whose case may be regarded as critical. Mr. Gallagher, of the Crocket Rangers, died on the 15th ult., having come under my charge after he had been abandoned by his physician. I immediately called Dr. Hopson in consultation with me, but he had become so prostrated and diseased that our efforts were unavailing to restore him. He died in consequence of secondary hemorrhage. The other, Mr. S. L. Poston, of Capt. Harvey's company, 2d Arkansas regiment, was attacked with pneumonia in Knoxville on the 14th ult., and arrived here on the 17th. His case was complicated with phthisis pulmonalis, and was in the third stage on his arrival here. He died June 23d.

In my attendance upon the sick soldiers under my charge I have been nobly aided by the excellent council and advice of  Drs. Allen, Shanks, Holliday, Erskine, Cypert, Wilson, Irwin, and others of the city, and  Surgeons Bartlett and Darling of 2d Arkansas regiment. They have visited our rooms as friends and as physicians, and I earnestly hope that each member of the profession will consider himself at all times a welcome visitor to our rooms.

The druggest [sic] and military board of Memphis have aided us by contributions of valuable drugs and medicines, and to them we should return our sincere thanks. I have endeavored to use the strictest economy in the administration of medicines by having them compounded at my rooms, saving valuable time.

It is a source of pleasure to me to bear testimony to the patriotic, self-sacrificing devotion of the different members of the association, who have been engaged in nursing the sick during the last two weeks. Assiduous in their daily vigils, they have accomplished as much, or more, by the tender care of the patients confided to them, than could have been done by any other means. It could not be otherwise. Actuated by the holiest and noblest patriotism they left their splendid palaces to administer to the wants at the bedside of the humble soldier. They have watched over their patients with a devotion and interest that excites the liveliest admiration. Mothers have left the cares and charms of home, to bathe the fevered brow and cool the parched tongue of those who were sons and brothers in the holy cause of defending our sunny South. The zeal and devotion of the "Southern Mothers" displayed at the rooms has extended to the fireside, and they have thrown open their doors, and taken the convalescing to their homes. So far, the demand for them to be thus provided for, has exceeded the supply.

Our thanks are due to Capt. A. B. Jewell, for many acts of kindness, especially in providing us, on several occasions, with good barbers; thereby aiding materially the comfort and appearance of the patients.

I have found it necessary to station sentinels at the front and rear entrances, also at the foot of the second stair case, leading to the Third [illegible] to all, as much as promiscuous visiting interfered with the treatment of the patients. In this connection, I will state to the members of the association, that so long as I have charge of the wards, I will enforce the strictest order and decorum. No "southern mother" shall ever blush at the recollection of ever having crossed the threshold of our rooms. No invalid soldier will ever regret that he was nursed by a "southern mother."

I will close by saying to the commanding officers and to the patriotic soldiers of the South that the rooms of the "southern mothers" in Memphis are always open, that they are ready and willing to receive their sick and wounded, and that they will be provided with everything to render them comfortable; that they will be watched over and nursed with the tenderest care by the members of the order, without fee or reward.

Respectfully yours, etc.,

G. W. Curry.

July 1st, 1861

To the Executive Committee of the Southern Mothers:

I herewith tender to you my resignation as surgeon of the institution under your charge.

Highly appreciating the honor you have conferred upon me, and the uniform kindness you have always shown me, I am, respectfully,

Yours etc.,

G. W. Curry, M. D.

"Mothers' Rooms," July 2, 1861

G. W. Curry, M. D., Surgeon of the Society of "Southern Mothers:"

Dear Sir: The resignation of your position in our society having been laid before a called meeting of the association, seventeen members being present, it was by acclamation voted that we cannot dispense with your services in our "Rooms;" we therefore decline to accept the resignation, and beg you to enter immediately upon your duties again, assuring you of our perfect confidence in your skill, our high regard for you personally, and our heartfelt gratitude for the noble and disinterested service you have rendered as in our attempts to alleviate the horrors of war by nursing to the best of our ability the suffering sons of the South in arms for the defense of our homes.

S. C. Law, President.

Mary E. Pope, Secretary.

Memphis Daily Appeal, July 3, 1861.

            3, Report on Martial Law in Knoxville

Knoxville, Tenn., is under martial law. The editor who olds Brownlow's spectre, having experiences its delights in a midnight arrest and a lodging in the guard house, soliloquizes thus upon the order of things:

"We have got martial law, and we feel disposed to return thanks for it-just as Cuffy did. He was a pious negro, and always returned thanks for what he had on his table, but always mentioned his wants also. Some wags who knew that he was short of potatoes, provided themselves with a basketful, and when Cuffy returned thanks for what was on the table, and added, "Mighty good dinner, Mass' Lord, if I only had a few pertaters', down came a shower of the coveted tubers, playing smash with cuff's scant delf-ware The pious negro, without changing his attitude, unhesitatingly continued his prayer – 'Dem's 'em, Mass' Lord-only just luff 'em down a little easier next time."

We are very thankful to our government for martial law, but hope they will 'luff down a little easier' next time."

Milwaukee Morning Sentinel, July 3, 1862. [2]

            4, A Protest Against Feminine Taunting of Federal Pickets in Memphis


It costs but very little to be polite and affable. The effort, intellectual and physical, neither exhausts the constitution nor impoverishes the mind.

Gentlemen of refinement and polish, are always urbane in their demeanor to all, equals as well as to inferiors. In that, they furnish indubitable evidence of being well bred, refined and educated with a punctilious observance of the elevating amenities of life. Their deportment and graceful presence, betoken the gentleman, which contrasts strongly with the coarse, vulgar, uncultivated booby, who is loudest in his manifestations of dislike, of anything that displeases him, under all circumstances and in all places. The clown carries the evidence of his doleful ignorance in his countenance. He is always blundering and stammering, sitting on his hat, upsetting his tea on the snowy spread, stumbling over a chair, or falls sprawling on the door steps as he bows himself in the approved lobster-like style out of the room.

These two cases show the effect of early training, we decide at once, which of the two has been blessed with the refining influences of good society, and that intellectual expansion secured by the attrition of mind upon mind, which gives character and a status to the man.

We are led to make these remarks on what is expected from every well-bred person, in consequence of the insulting course pursued by a well-known pseudo poetess of a bevy of goslin[g]s green on Madison street, towards our soldiers.

All that an envenomed, vile tongued, virago, aided by hissing adders could do, has been done, to insult our pickets, as they come in from and to out on duty.

The poor, week [sic], and fluttering aspirant for the groves of Parnassus, vents her intoxicated hatred and crazy wrath towards or men, by hissing in the modern geesy [sic] style, looking very sharp and very fierce, flaunting her dress as evidence of contempt with various other elegant and lady-like proofs of her utter abhorrence for Federal soldiers.

Her demonstrations are eloquent of her early training, her associations were evidently coarse, unrefined and far removed from that retiring modesty, which so embellishes and ennobles woman.

Crack-brained, dreamy and visionary secessionists, whose head is crammed with rickety, disjointed poetical twaddle, which would get any school girl a sound thrashing for writing, and very apt to fancy themselves buoyed up with a divine afflatus, which is really excessively offensive and gassy. Such vagaries, however, we can tolerate, and by great exertion endure, but we cannot, and will not, endure their silly taunts and indignities to our men. We therefore strongly urge our military authorities to arrest all such offenders ands send them South.

Secessia is precisely the place for them, they should yearn to reach their beloved Dixie.

We don't want them.


Memphis Union Appeal, July 4, 1862.

            4, The 4th of July in Columbia

The cannon was heard in Town [sic] of Columbia celebrating the day…a greate [sic] many negro men[,] women & children with there [sic] flags & flag poles[.] [A] dinner was prepared for many at White's Spring but the black ladies was marched to the Table[.] [T]he soldiers pitched in & devoured it & so the blacks was quite unlucky (they got none). In the evening the soldier was sent all over Town [sic] & pressed & captured all the able bodied negro men that could be gathered, several hundred, to gone somewhere to work….

Nimrod Porter Diary, July 4, 1864.


[1] Not referenced in OR.

[2] TSL&A, 19th CN

June 29 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

Sunday 29th 1862

Came home after being up all night. Addie Ledbetter, Eliza Nelson, Mr. Drumright, Mr. Reps Duffer, & Mr. John Brown also sat up & not o­ne of us went to sleep. The body had to be placed in the casket soon after supper, as decomposition had begun. As soon as I returned, went to sleep & didn't get up until 10 or eleven o'clock. Ma then waked me up to take charge of the keys, as she & cousin Ann were going out to Mr. Hord's to see Aunt McCulloch, & Pa came home about 4 or 5 o'clock from Mr. Duffer's little child's burial, & Uncle William Lytle came with him & waited to hear from Aunt McCulloch. Cousin Mary Lytle & Willie were here a few minutes this evening. I was compelled to speak to the Yankees today, (as Ma was not here) o­n business, but I didn't want to do it.

Kate Carney Diary

April 15, 1861-July 31, 1862


29, Skirmish near Lexington
No. 1.--Brig. Gen. Alexander Asboth, U. S. Army, commanding District of Columbus, Ky.
No. 2.--Lieut. M. M. R. William Grebe, Fourth Missouri Cavalry.
No. 3.--Maj. Wiley Waller, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry.
No. 4.--Col. George E. Waring, jr., commanding First Brigade, Sixth Division, Sixteenth Army Corps .
No. 1.
Reports of Brig. Gen. Alexander Asboth, U. S.
Army, commanding District of Columbus, Ky.
HDQRS. DIST. OF COLUMBUS, KY., 6TH DIV., 16TH A. C., Columbus, Ky., July 3, 1863.
COL.: I beg to state that First Lieut. M. M. R. William Grebe,
Fourth Missouri Cavalry, arrived this morning at 4 o'clock from Fort Heiman, and make the following preliminary report:
On June 29, a. m., a force under command of Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich, Fourth Missouri Cavalry, consisting of 8 officers and 85 men of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry, and 8 officers and 160 men of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry, under Lieut.-Col. Henry, left Spring Creek to scout toward Lexington. When within 6 miles of Lexington, information was gained of a large rebel force in that place, said to be 1,500 strong, and that another force of about 500 men was moving from Jackson to attack us in the rear. Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich concluded to fall back to Spring Creek to avid being cut off. On the march back, we were attacked by a force of about 2,000 rebels at 2 p. m., lying in ambush, who were not discovered until they fired upon our advance guard. Being closely pressed and pursued, and not being able to reach Columbus, an attempt was made to reach Fort Heiman, which was but partially successful.
Lieut. Grebe returned with 5 officers and 57 men of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry, but cannot state the exact loss of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry. He left at Fort Heiman but 2 officers and about 45 men of that regiment. Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich and Lieut.-Col. Henry, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry, are both missing.
It was reported to Lieut. Grebe that the rebel force engaged is of Forrest's division, under immediate command of Gen. [R. V.] Richardson, under whom are Col.'s [Jacob B.] Bifle [James U.] Green, and [John F.] Newsom.
Please refer to my communication of 24th ultimo, inclosing a copy of my instructions to Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich, dated 23d ultimo. As soon as Lieut. Grebe can make out his detailed report, a copy will be forwarded.
Respectfully, colonel, your obedient servant,
ASBOTH, Brig.-Gen.
Lieut. Col. HENRY BINMORE, Asst. Adjt. Gen., 16th Army Corps.

COL.: I beg to inclose, in addition to my report of July 3, the official report of Col. George E. Waring, jr., Fourth Missouri Cavalry, and Maj. Wiley Waller, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry, of the action near Lexington, Tenn., on June 29, 1863, with lists of the killed, wounded, and missing.
The loss may be stated as follows: Fourth Missouri Cavalry-commissioned officers missing, 2; enlisted men missing, 26.
Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry-commissioned officers missing, 5; enlisted men missing, 17; enlisted men killed, 1; enlisted men paroled and returned, 7; enlisted men paroled and not returned, 4. Total officers and men, 62.
The men reporting themselves paroled have been ordered to duty.
Respectfully, colonel, your obedient servant,
ASBOTH, Brig.-Gen.
Lieut. Col. HENRY BINMORE, Asst. Adjt. Gen., 16th Army Corps.

No. 2.
Report of Lieut. M. M. R. William Grebe, Fourth Missouri Cavalry.
FORT HEIMAN, July 7, 1863.
I arrived here last night with 2 officers and about 40 men of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry Regt. and 10 men of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry Regt. Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich and Lieut. Garrett are missing, and probably taken prisoners. All the officers of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry Regt. are missing.
On the morning of June 29, we left Spring Creek to go to Lexington. When within 2 miles of the latter place, we were informed that a large force of rebel troops was there, probably 15,000 men, and that another force from Jackson, about 500 strong, was to attack us in our rear. Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich concluded to fall back to Spring Creek to avoid the cut off. When on the march back there, we were attacked by a force of about 2,000 rebels at 2 p. m., who were lying in ambush, whom we did not see till they fired upon our advance guard. Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich has done the best he could do, but we met with a bad fate. As we were very hardly pursued, and not able to reach Columbus, we entirely broken down, and many men without arms, and cannot be of any assistance to the fort here, we intend to leave here by the first boat, to go to Columbus.
The whole force of the enemy under command of Gen. [R. V.] Richardson is reported to be from 20,000 to 25,000 men, well armed, and all mounted; and the nearest pickets are reported at Paris, Tenn.
I have the honor to remain, your most obedient servant,
M. M. R. WILLIAM GREBE, First Lieut., Cmdg. Detachment Fourth Missouri Cavalry.
Brig. Gen. A. ASBOTH, Cmdg. District.

No. 3.
Report of Maj. Wiley Waller, Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry.
HDQRS. UNITED STATES FORCES, Fort Heiman, July 4, 1863.
GEN.: I have the honor to report that in the absence of Lieut. Col. A. P. Henry, I have assumed command of this post.
On the 26th instant Lieut.-Col. Henry, with the entire effective force of the cavalry at this post, numbering 285, rank and file, started on an expedition against [J. B.] Biffle. He was joined by the forces under Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich, of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry, numbering 80, rank and file, at Paris Tenn. The forces then moved to Lexington, and from there toward Jackson, an encountered a rebel force, estimated at from 1,000 to 1,500 strong. A skirmish ensued under the direction of Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich, which lasted some hour and a half, when our forces retreated, and were rapidly pursued by the enemy. The rear guard made several stands, each time inflicting severe loss on the enemy.
The loss from the Fifteenth Kentucky, as near as can be ascertained, is as follows: One lieutenant-colonel, 1 captain, 3 lieutenant, 35 enlisted men, and a considerable number of horses, arms, &c.
Several of our men have returned paroled, and I would respectfully ask for instructions as to what disposition to make of them.
The situation of the cavalry at this time is bad; almost all the horses they had were engaged in the skirmish, and, after a hasty retreat of 100 miles, those that have reached camp are utterly exhausted, and will be unfit for service for some time. The force also is quite small, and unable to withstand an attack of 500 men. The enemy has a force of from 10,000 to 15,000 men within 100 miles of this post, and some small bodies as close as 30 miles, and but for the gunboats we might be attacked any hour. Yet we are willing to do everything in our power, and expect to hold the place as long as possible.
Please let me hear from you at your earliest convenience.
I am, general, very respectfully, yours,
Maj., Cmdg. Post.
Brig. Gen. A. ASBOTH, Cmdg. District of Columbus.

No. 4
Report of Col. George E. Waring, Jr., commanding First Brigade, Sixth Division, Sixteenth Army Corps.
HDQRS. FIRST Brig., SIXTH DIV., SIXTEENTH ARMY CORPS, Union City, Tenn., August 7, 1863.
CAPT.: At the time of the action near Lexington, Tenn., June 29, 1863, I was in command of the post of Columbus, and since that time to the present I have not been in command of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry. But learning from your communication of August 5 that no official report has been furnished, and believing from the fact that the regiment is in part here and part of Columbus, further delay would result unless some action was taken by myself, I submit the following:
Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich was intrusted, by order from headquarters of the district, with an expedition to West Tennessee, of about 97 officers and men of the Fifteenth Kentucky Cavalry.
On the morning of the 29th of June, 1863, he was made aware of the presence of the enemy in two detachments, one, numbering about 500, at or near Lexington, and the other, about 1,500, near his flank. He was then near Spring Creek, and finding it impossible to get aid or information from the hostile inhabitants, determined to retreat toward Clarksburg, and was so marching when, near Spring Creek, his advance guard was fired upon. The command was halted, and was formed to repel the chargers over heavy ground by two companies of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry, which developed the enemy in large force on foot behind an embankment formed by direst thrown from a drain, with cavalry in equally large numbers on the flank, the retreat was continued ward Clarksburg. At judiciously selected points in the road, the Fourth Missouri Cavalry was formed, to repel the pursuit and to protect the rear and those who were wounded. In one of these encounters, Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich dismounted to assist a wounded officer, and while so dismounted his horse broke away and he was taken prisoner, after which the retreat became less systematic, and the inhabitants of Clarksburg, who fired from their houses as the troops passed through that place, increased the confusion. The retreat was continued to Fort Heiman, when Lieut. Grebe, the senior officer after the engagement, arrived with about 45 men, which number was increased somewhat by the arrival on the next and succeeding day of those who had become dismounted, but had made their way through the woods to Fort Heiman on foot or in passing country wagons.
I cannot close this report without adding that all the officers with whom I have spoken concerning the affair speak in the highest terms of Lieut.-Col. Von Helmrich's well-formed plans in encountering the enemy, his coolness and bravery during the action, and his judicious management of the rear during the short time which elapsed from the skirmish until his unfortunate capture. The men of the Fourth Missouri Cavalry are also highly praised for their soldierly conduct during and after the skirmish.
Inclosed is a report of the killed, wounded, and missing, as nearly as can be ascertained.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. E. WARING, JR., Col., Cmdg. Brigade.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, pp. 631-632.

The purpose of this expedition was to gather hostages from Lexington, Tennessee, to guarantee the safety of Union men taken prisoner by Confederates. Likewise the skullduggery of spying is indicated, with a secret rendezvous with a Union informant. According to Lieutenant-Colonel Von Helmrich's marching orders:
COLUMBUS, KY., June 23, 1863.
Lieut.-Col. VON HELMRICH, Cmdg. Expedition:
COL.: Herewith find copy of Section XI, Special Orders, No. 152, current Series, from these headquarters, in accordance with which you will proceed to Fort Heiman, Kentucky....In case the reported demonstration of the enemy on Fort Heiman should prove to be false, you will proceed with the three companies of your regiment southward, in the general direction of Lexington, Tenn. Arriving at Lexington you will arrest the following named persons, well known as actively disloyal and dangerous, on account of their wealth, and influence: William T. Collins (Carries on a shoe factory for the rebels; his negro, Burrell, can give all necessary information), John F. Clark, Dr. John E. West, and George W. Pool, all residing in Lexington, and William F. Kiser, Verbin Trico, and William Barnhill, residing about 4 miles west and northwest of Lexington. These men, you will inform the citizens of Lexington, will be held as hostages at Columbus, Ky, for the good treatment of the persons and property of Union men. Isaac C. Hall, William Brooks, and Levi McEwing (the sheriff) can be relied on for information regarding the enemy, they being reported as consistent Union men. Either going or returning you will visit Huntingdon, Tenn., and obtain a secret interview Dr. Seth W. Bell, a trustworthy Union man. Any statement he may make can be relied upon, and you will arrange with him to send by messenger to these headquarters, from time to time, any authentic information he may gather of importance regarding the enemy, assuring him that men employed by him for that purpose will be remunerated here. His signature, when writing letters of information, is D. Snips. Finally, you are informed that a cavalry force of ours is expected to move from the Mississippi State line to Jackson, Tenn., and the Obion region. Be careful not to mistake them for rebels.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 24, pt. III, p. 434.



Tuesday, June 28, 2011

June 28 - Notes on the Civil War in Tennessee

   28, Chapter 24, in eleven sections, passed by the 31st (Confederate) General Assembly, relative to the authorization of the Governor to draft free persons of color into the Army of Tennessee:

Section 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, That from and after the passage of this act the Governor shall be, and he is hereby, authorized, at his discretion, to receive into the military service of the State all male free persons of color between the ages of fifteen (15) and fifty (50) -- or such numbers as may be necessary, who may be sound in mind and body and capable of actual service.

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, That such free persons of color shall be required to do all such menial service for the relief of the volunteers as is incident to camp life, and necessary to the efficiency of the service, and of which they are capable of performing.

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, That such free persons of color shall receive, each, eight dollars per month as pay, for such person shall be entitled to draw, each, o­ne ration per day, and shall be entitled to a yearly allowance each of clothing.

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, That in order to carry out the provisions of this act it shall be the duty of the sheriffs of the several counties in this State to collect accurate information as to the number and condition, with the names of free persons of color subject to the provisions of this act, and shall, as it is practicable, report the same in writing to the Governor.

Sec. 5. Be it further enacted, That a failure or refusal of the sheriffs, or any o­ne or more of them, to perform the duties required by the fourth section of this act, shall be deemed an offense, and o­n conviction thereof, shall be punished for misdemeanor, at the discretion of the Judge of the Circuit or Criminal Courts having cognizance of the same.

Sec. 6. Be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of officers in command to see that the class of persons who may enter the service under the provisions of this act, do not suffer from neglect or maltreatment.

Sec. 7. Be it further enacted, That in the event a sufficient number of free persons of color to meet the wants of the State shall not tender their services, then the Governor is empowered, through the sheriffs of the different counties, to impress such persons until the requisite number is obtained; in doing so, he will have regard to the population of such persons in the several counties, and shall direct the sheriffs to determine by lot those that are required to served.

Sec. 8. Be it further enacted, That the expenses incurred in this branch of the service shall be regarded as a part of the army expenses, and provided for accordingly.

Sec. 9. Be it further enacted, That when any mess of volunteers shall keep a servant to wait o­n the members of the mess, each servant shall be allowed to draw o­ne ration.

Sec. 10. Be it further enacted, That the Adjutants of Regiments may be selected from the private soldiers in the line of the service as well as from the officers in the service.

Sec. 11. Be it further enacted, That this act take effect from and after its passage

W.C. Whitthorne, Speaker of the House of Representatives

B.L. Stoval, Speaker of the Senate. Passed June 28, 1861

Public Acts of the State of Tennessee, pp. 49-50.

Public Acts of the State of Tennessee, passed at the extra session of the Thirty-Third General Assembly, April, 1861 (Nashville: J.G. Griffith & Co, Public Printers, Union and American Office, 1861), Chapter 24, pp. 49-50. See also: OR, Ser. IV, Vol. 1, p. 409.




28, Resistance to Federal rule in Middle Tennessee, Robert B. C. Howell informs Military Governor Andrew Johnson that he refuses to take the oath of allegiance to the United States of America

January [sic] [June] [sic] 28, 1862
Gov. Johnson -- Sir: Summoned before you I am requested to take the following oath:

I do solemnly swear that I will support, protect and defend the Constitution and government of the United States against all enemies, whether domestic of foreign, and that I will bear true faith, allegiance and loyalty to the same, any laws, ordinances, resolutions or convention to the contrary notwithstanding; and, farther, [sic] that I do this with a full determination , pledge and purpose without any mental reservation or evasion whatsoever; and, further, [sic] that I will well and faithfully perform all the duties which may be required of me by law[.] So help me God
Sworn to and subscribed before me.

I have ever scrupulously conformed myself to the government under which I have lived. I do this as a religious duty. I have never knowingly violated any law of the Federal government, of the state government, nor of the military government now established. I am informed that no violation of the law is charged against me. My purpose is to pursue the same course hereafter. I intend not to resist the "powers that be," but to comply with their requisition as far as they do not come in conflict with my duty to God. Respectfully I feel myself obliged to say that I cannot do it, and for several reasons, some of which I beg permission very briefly to state.

First - I cannot take this oath, because there are some parts of it which I do not understand. When I am requested to swear that I will "bear true faith, allegiance and loyalty to the Constitution and government of the United State, any law, ordinances, resolution or convention to the contrary notwithstanding," I am at a loss as to the meaning. What law, ordinances, resolution or convention is referred to, I know not. I cannot tell whether reference is had to some exiting law, ordinance, resolution or contention which I am likely to suppose obligatory upon me, or to something of this kind which may hereafter be inaugurated. Nor do I know who is to be the judge, I myself, or some one else, whether such laws, ordinances, resolutions or conventions if there be any such, are or are not in conflict with the Constitution and government of the United States.
And, further, when I am called upon to swear "that I will well and faithfully perform all the duties which may be required of me by law," I perceive no conditions nor limitations. What laws may be adopted by the United State and by the State of Tennessee, who knows? They may be laws in conflict with my duty to God; they may be laws in collision with the constitution; they may be laws in antagonism with other laws claiming my obedience. Such compliance with them is impossible, yet it is demanded of me to swear that "I will well and faithfully perform all the duties required of me by law," without condition and without limitations.

An oath so vague, indefinite and impracticable respectfully I must decline to take.

Second -- I cannot take this oath, because once having sworn to support the Constitution of the United States, and having up to this hour faithfully complied with the obligation, and receiving now no office nor privilege of any kind under the government of the United State nor of the State of Tennessee, thee is nothing known to me in the Federal Constitution, nor in the constitution of this state, nor in the laws made in pursuance of either which requires me to repeat that oath. The demand that I shall do so under the circumstances in which I am placed implies that I am an offender against the Constitution or the laws, or both. That implication I respectfully decline to countenance by taking the oath.

Third -- I cannot take this oath because, since the present government of the United States, and the Constitution of the United States, are in some respects at least confessedly [sic] in antagonism, to "support, protect and defend" both is clearly impossible.

To support, protect and defend the one is necessarily to oppose and resist the other. To keep this oath, therefore, (I speak for myself only) is impracticable. Perjury is inevitable. From taking it, therefore, I must be excusable.
Fourth -- I cannot take this oath because it binds me to support and protect and defend the "government of the United States," by which doubtless is meant the government of the United States as at present administered. Already the administration has done many things which I cannot support and defend, and which I cannot conscientiously swear that I that I will support and defend. What it may do hereafter, and what its successor may do, I cannot tell. This makes me swear with conditions and without limitations "that I will support, protect and defend the government of the United States."

To do this would be to "resign my right of thought" and so renounce my liberty as a free citizen of my country.

Fifth -- Nor can I take this oath as a measure of expediency. By expediency I refer to the fact that since an oath taken under duress is not binding then on those who resort to it to save their families from suffering and themselves from punishment. I have a large, helpless and dependent family; I am myself not indifferent to the ease and comforts of life, but I cannot avail myself of this plea for several reasons, one only of which need be mentioned. This oath makes me swear that I take upon me those obligations "without any mental reservation or evasion whatever;" that is as I understand it, that I do not avail myself of this expedient, but take the obligation heartily and in good faith. In me, who cannot disregard its moral binding force, this would be perjury.

Sixth -- I cannot take this oath because it would be a violation of my duty to God. My duty to God requires that I shall take no oath the entire import of which I do not fully understand, that I shall not swear unless there be good and sufficient reasons for it, that I swear to do contradictory things, that I shall not do impracticable things, and that if I do swear that I shall not swear falsely, but shall truly and fully perform my oath. To take this oath would there fore be to violate my duty to God.

Seventh -- Without an oath I shall in the future, as I have heretofore, perform as a religious duty every just obligation to the "powers that be," but this oath I cannot take. I cannot take it as a measure of expediency; I cannot take it at all. I must respectfully decline it and take the consequences.

January 26, 1862
R.B.C. Howell

Papers of Andrew Johnson, Vol. 5, pp. 513-514, 516.

[Ed. Note - Howell's arguement was to no avail, and he was arrested shortly thereafter.]



 28, "So you can see how things is working hear.  If our negroes are brought home thy would all runn off sure. You can read this and not know how many is gone nor nothing about it to make them dissatisfyed." Letter from Robert Cooper to J. M. Cooper [McMinn County]

Mr. J. M. Cooper,

These few lines will inform you that we are all well at this time. We Rec 'd [sic] your line the other day without date. You said you want some corn and Bacon. Your own corn has not been troubled since you left, the robbers stold [sic] your Bacon all except seven peaces [sic] & Critz has been robbed of all his & Bed clothes & Dished & Bees & a great many other things. there [sic] has not [been] a springhouse [that has] escaped the robbers, the woods is full of Lyouts, [sic] some Bush whacken [sic] going o­n, a few killed o­n Both [sic] sides. There is several comp[any [sic] of Robbers [sic] in this county stealing horses and & Robing houses. I suppose you have heard of Yankee Raid, [sic] bean [sic] about the middle of this Month. Some 250 Yanks came from Knoxville & through Rogersville to Kingsport the stage road [sic] taking negroes & horses. Ned & Lize is [sic] both gone & Dan I suppose. When they got to fall Branch that they had 50 negroes [sic]. say [sic] 2 G. M. Lyons John H. Ellis, Isom, Mrs. Besson some James Johnson, some Robt. Neatherland [sic] & with a promise to come back and take them all. So you can see how things is working hear. [sic] If our negroes are brought home thy would all runn [sic] off sure. You can read this and not know how many is gone nor nothing [sic] about it to make them dissatisfyed. [sic] I am trying to fix for harvest. I think I will be able to save all the wheat and Rice. [sic] Your wheat is tolerable good, the Hamiltons [sic] is very good, no smut, the quaker wheat is bat smutted, some in the Rest [sic] of your wheat. Your own is all over the 3 time [sic] and looks tolerable well. This is the 4 letter that me and Rachel has rote [sic] to you & Recd [sic] o­ne from you.

Rachel & the children is all well & getting along very well considering. Tht [sic] Damd [sic] Roges [sic] stole her bacon, most of the bacon that was left was sids. [sic] The boys complains [sic] that they have no ham to eat but a plenty of milk and butter.

You say Wm [sic] Ellis left you some time ago, he got home, come by Russell & your mare was all stolen, and gone sometime before he got Back. Your gray filey [sic] &: mule is still in the pasture up thare [sic] yet. Ellis started back some time ago but he returned back again & says he will start again as soon as the harvest is over. He said that he was taken up twist while gone the last time.

There is a few soldier hear now scouting round no regiment all scouts. We get no news from the army for some time. I am in hope it will be good when it comes.

Robert Cooper

When you receive this write to us and rite [sic] all the news, it will be all news to us.

WPA Civil War Records, Vol. 2, pp. 160-161.


June 27 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

27, A Readyville mother's plea to free her son from the Federal prisoner-of-war camp

[Readyville, Rutherford County]

June the 27th 1862

Mr [sic] Andrew Johnson. Govner [sic] of Tennessee

I have a request to make of you which I hope you may grant[.] The favour I have to ask is that you will let Alley Abernathy come home on a parole of honor and stay 2 months as a prisoner at home, [sic] he is my oldest child I hav [sic] a living[.] his [sic] brother got killed in blowing rock in a sister [sic] two years ago. my [sic] husband died 15 months ago, the only son I have with me had his thigh broke, and his breast bone broke and twisted out of its natural placed, and is injured inwardly so blood passes from him whenever he fatiuegs [sic] himself [sic], he is disabled for life.. it [sic] was done by falling from a swing 2 years ago, I have three little girles [sic] to rase [sic], if you would grant my requst [sic] it would confer a great favour on me, [sic] I will not sate the character of Alley[.] He is a study [sic] kind hearted boy and if he has an enimy [sic] on earth I do not know it. Profeser [sic] Jarmon says he is the best boy that ever went to school to him in Murfreesboro[.] he [sic] is also a Christain, and you must remember that the privates did not cause the war, theay [sic] were forced to take up arms on one side of the other and theay [sic] made their choice to go with the south[.] As to Alley he said had [sic] rather be in his grave it was the lords [sic] will than to go to war, but he said he would not go as a drafted man, [sic]

As to my own part I am not bitter at either party, as I think it a fulfillment of the bible [sic]. as [sic] the learned of all denominations admit that their [sic] is some important event to take place between this and 1866 the melenial [sic] year is to ursure in it is expected by a grat maney [sic]. and [sic] if that be a correct opinion we all should be ready to appear before the juge [sic] to receive our final doom. That [sic] knows no change, [sic] here we hope for a change of our prisnors [sic] or pease [sic], that they may return to their homes. but [sic] one hope I have for my child if we meet hear [sic] on earth no more [sic] that I will meet him around the throne of god [sic] whear [sic] no harm can reach him [sic],
Mr. Johnson you have power now but recollect the bible says whatsoever measure we mete out it will be measured back again, but I must stop for perhaps I have written more than you will read by remember [sic] the feeling of a parent and grant my requst [sic].

Please answer this, and I will ever be under many obligations to you, if you would let all the boys come home on a parole of honor it is my opinion that theay [sic], would return when called for, and I do not think it would be any injury to the north for theay; [sic] are escaping, and coming home and as theay [sic], cannot stay at home, theay [sic] are forced to go to the southern army, but if theay [sic] were permitted to come home on a parole of honor they would be glad to remain at home in a [sic] honorable way[.] no [sic] more at present.

Yours with respet [sic]
Narcissa R. Hall

This letter I wish to be kept private[.]

The Prisoners that I wish released was taken at Donolson [sic][.] theay [sic] are at camp Butler near springfield [sic] Illinois[.]

Papers of Andrew Johnson, Vol. 5, pp.509-510.








27, Voting Early and Often in Memphis Municipal Election

Illegal Voting.

We referred yesterday to the large amount of illegal voting practiced all over the city, in the election of Mayor. "A Citizen of the Fourth ward, who was present at the election, sends us the following communication. He thinks that those who voted in that ward were legally qualified. We are free to say, that from all we have learned, the election in that ward was conducted in a fairer and more lawful manner than in some other places, and this is seen in the result wrought out. And yet, as our correspondent admits, illegal voters made an attempt to carry the election there as elsewhere. Hundreds of illegal voters – foreigners just landed here, with nothing but their oath of allegiance – tried to vote, and if the judges there had been as derelict as some of them were, they would have exercised the right of suffrage without let or hindrance. These same men, thus refused a vote because the hand no right to vote, desired to compromise by voting only for general officers magnanimously proffering to pretermit the electing of Aldermen. But one of the judges of the election succeeded in making these fresh friends of misrule understand that they couldn't vote at all, and more, that they attempt to do so was illegal, and that if they attempted it again he would present their names before a grand jury for indictment! This quieted the persistent patriots, and they left, avowing their determination to vote elsewhere, where the officers were not so particular.

We cordially indorse what our correspondent says about the responsibility for illegal voting resting upon "the city authorities," who make this appointment of judges of election! The responsibility does not rest with them; but who believes that the primary object with them, under existing circumstances, was to prevent [sic] the lamentable disregard of the election law, which was everywhere so patent and shameless?
Editor Bulletin:

In your paper of yesterday, on the subject of illegal voting, you say that fraud was practices all over the city. Now, so far as the Fourth ward is concerned, allow me to suggest that you are probably in error, for in that ward only one hundred and thirteen votes were polled under the provision of this city charter, which makes it necessary that every voter shall be a citizen of the United States, a bon fide citizen of Memphis six months – and of the ward in which he offers to vote thirty days next preceding the election. It is true a good many did try to vote in the Fourth ward, by showing their oath of allegiance merely, allowed to vote early and often in the other wards, as was probably the case, merely upon showing that paper, which did not entitle them to a vote at all, but faulty was with those who conducted the election, and who were sworn to hold it according to law; and the fault also lies with the city authorities in not appointing competent judges and clerks to hold the election according to law, as the charter requires

Citizen of Fourth Ward.[1]

Memphis Daily Bulletin, June 27, 1863.

[1] Corrupt machine politics were not limited to the cities of the northeast, as this document testifies. It may be possible likewise to see in this story an example resistance by Confederate partisans to Federal rule of the city on the part of the incumbent Mayor and Board of Aldermen.





27, Orders No. 28, Office of Inspector of Fortifications
Headquarters District of Tennessee
Office of Inspector of Fortifications
Nashville, Tenn., June 27th, 1864
Order No. 28
Quartermasters of troops garrisoning the blockhouses along the lines of the railroads, will make requisitions immediately for the tools and materials necessary to complete the block houses, and to keep them in good order.
Each block-house commander will draw the tools from the proper quartermaster.
Every block-house must be considered as depending wholly upon itself in case of an attack. Every block-house will have a permanent garrison and commander assigned to it who will be held responsible for its safety and condition. The practice which prevails at some points of sending a new guard and relieving the old none every day from some other point will cease.
The work on the block-houses will be carried on by the garrisons under the direction of the Assistant Inspectors who will give all necessary instructions to that end.
The work on the block-houses will be carried on by the garrisons under the direction of the Assistant Inspectors who will give all necessary instructions to that end.
The Assistant Inspectors will make reports to this office on the 1st and 15th of each month stating the amount and kind of work done since last report. In case there is any infraction of the rules and regulations, the Assistant Inspectors will report the name, rank, &c. of the officer responsible therefor and state the particulars.
The following list will serve as a guide to the tools required in each block-house:
3 Shovels 3 spades
3 picks 1 adze
2 broad axes 1 large cross-cut saw
1 hand saw 1 rip hand saw,
2 axes 1 hammer (claw)
1 hatchet 10 lbs. each, 10-penny and 20-penny nails
1 2-inch auger 1 2-inch framing chisel
1 1-inch auger 1 1-inch framing chisel
2 mallets 2 Wheelbarrows
1 lb. chalk 2 chalk lines
1 steel square
By command of Maj. Gen. Rousseau
Jas. R. Willett, 1st Lt., 88th Ill. Inf'ty, Inspector of Fortifications, Dist. Tennessee
Nashville Daily Times and True Union, July 28, 1864


Saturday, June 25, 2011

June 24 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

Tuesday June 24th 1862
This morning heard that Richmond has been taken though it is not generally believed. Pa sent word back to Cousin Ann that Will Wilkinson would call out & get a bundle she wanted to send out to Mr. Ewing's. Bettie & I fearing he might call for us left home, as I don't want to see people who have taken the oath. We went up to see Mollie Crockett, met old Mr. Crockett there whom I had not seen for months. She (Mollie) said her husband Mr. Robt. Crockett & Tom Tucker sent their love to me. I hope it is true about the exchange of prisoners. Poor fellows, they have had a hard time of it. It was rumored they were to pass here today, but it proved a mistake. Mollie told me that Aunt Judy said she thought Bill Spence was blamed too much in town, & she did not think him such a bad person as everybody thought him. I would not be surprised the next thing I heard that Uncle Ephe had come home, & that cousin Mary & Mary Spence were very intimate. I think policy can be carried entirely too far. We drove by Mrs. Winship's to see how she was & by Aunt Nancy's to hear the news. No news, but very cheerful. We stopped by a few moments to hear how Mrs. Wm. Anderson's little child was, that has been quite sick for several days. Mr. Wilkinson had not been out, neither did he come this evening, which I was glad of. Heard that Holly Springs, Miss. had been taken. I should like to know where Dr. Wilson & Sister Mary are, they were to spend the summer here, provided they could get up here. I wish she was here, though I wouldn't have him take the oath for anything. Poor Brother John hasn't been permitted yet to come. It is reported that a large battle will be fought near Shelbyville soon. A Regt. from here went up to the assistance of the Yankees today although Old Gen. Mitchell & Buel are both there. Kate Avent is still with Rosa. Buck Alexander has taken the oath & come home. I'm glad I'm not acquainted with him, hope I never will be. Who can we trust. A Yankee Capt. died at Mrs. Maney's yesterday. I don't care how many die.
Kate Carney Diary
April 15, 1861-July 31, 1862


24, "…the sun shown brightly on the moving hosts, the arms glittered gaily in the bright light and all was life and animation." The initiation of the Tullahoma Campaign, as recorded by Sergeant Charles Alley, 5th Iowa Cavalry

Left early this morning and found the whole army [of the Cumberland] in motion. Everywhere were [sic] to be seen large bodies of men moving southward. Cavalry, artillery and infantry – the sun shown brightly on the moving hosts, the arms glittered gaily in the bright light and all was life and animation. We moved forward on the Woodbury Pike. Soon the fine morning passed away clouds rapidly rose. Thunders [sic] uttered their voices and lightnings [sic] flashed and we marched on through a pouring rain for about 8 miles when we were halted and had the pleasure of sitting an hour or two in the rain, when we were countermarched and came back to M. and then went out on the Salem Pike where it was said the Rebels were driving our men. All the way we could hear the cannonading – but in the afternoon it seemed to be getting farther off – we marched seven or eight miles on this latter pike then took across the road and went on a few miles farther to the left and bivouacked. I was rather a dreary time everything in damp. However, I spread my rubber blanket on the ground, my saddle blanket on that and lay down. After awhile it began to rain again when I drew my talma over my blanket and defied it.

Alley Diary



24, Skirmish* at Christiana
COL.: In accordance with orders of this date, I have the honor to submit the following summary of the operations of my division during the past five days:
By direction of Maj. Gen. G. Granger, commanding Reserve Corps, I advanced from Triune, Tenn., at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, June 23, 1863, by the Nolensville pike, to within 1 mile of Harpeth River, and thence striking across to the Manchester pike, by way of Winslow's Camp Ground, I arrived at Salem at 6 p.m., and encamped for the night.
At 7 a.m. Wednesday, June 24, I advanced of the Twentieth Army Corps. I remained at Christiana until relieved, in turn, by Gen. Baird's division of the Reserve Corps, when I advanced 2 miles in the direction of Millersburg, and encamped for the night on Ross' farm, at Henry's Creek. At Christiana my pickets encountered those of the rebels, and kept up a brisk skirmish during my stay at that point, the rebels occasionally bringing a 6-pounder gun to bear upon us, without, however, doing us any injury.
On Thursday, June 25, I was relived from duty with the Reserve Corps, and ordered to report to the corps proper of the division. I, however, remained at the Ross farm, at the request of Gen. McCook, commanding on my immediate left, until 11 a.m. that day, when I advanced to Hoover's Mill and encamped for the night.
During the 24th and 25th it rained incessantly, rendering the dirt roads over which I was frequently obliged to travel exceedingly difficult for the passage of artillery and wagons. I, however, succeeded in bringing my train through with comparatively little damage.
On Friday, June 26, I reported, according to orders, to Maj.-Gen. Rousseau, and, in conjunction with his division, effected the passage of Hoover's Gap (an Official report of the action attending which I have already forwarded), and encamped that night on the south side of Scott's Branch of Garrison Creek.
On Saturday, June 27, I advanced to Manchester, via Fairfield, striking the Manchester pike at Powell's farm, and encamped there, under the direction of the major-general commanding the corps.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brig.-Gen., Cmdg. Division.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, p. 420.
* Ed. note - Oftentimes the existence of a skirmish is chronicled not in a separate report, but in a report encompassing several days or weeks of activities, such as the Tullahoma Campaign. The skirmish at Christiana (Rutherford County) is an example. It was mentioned as part of five days of fighting during the campaign and aside from the fact that it is documented, was a small fight.



Wednesday, June 22, 2011

June 21 - Tennessee Civil War Notes

                21, Optimism and confidence expressed by one Tennessee Confederate

Nashville, June 21, 1861

Gen. Walker

My confidence is unshaken...The crops on the Arkansas River are Beautiful. No danger now....The provision blockade is nothing: we shall have wheat, corn and beef beyond measure, besides tobacco, sugar, and rice, and the king who can shake the jewels in the crown of Queen Victoria (cotton). Send for General Bragg and the Tennessee troops and thus concentrate talent and big guns and little guns until you strike "fuss and feathers'[1] with consternation. Foreign nations would soon regard their vain boastings as a farce. Cotton, tobacco, wheat, corn, and meat must go into your treasury to sustain our gallant men in the tented field and the heads of departments in control. Fear nothing, success is certain.

With high regard, very truly, your friend,

S.R. Cockrill

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 52, pt. II, p. 113-114.

                21, "Let us show them that we are as fruitful in expedients to preserve life, as are terrible in avenging our wrongs;" a patriotic appeal to southern women to produce homespun clothing

From the [Nashville] Republican Banner

Provision for the future-"Something for the Women of the South to Consider."

We desire to call the especial attention of our reader and also of our contemporaries of the Southern press, to the important suggestions made in the following letter, written by one of the leading men in the State -- one who fully comprehends our situation, and is as competent as any other to anticipate the future:

Editor Banner: -- I beg to leave to trouble your readers with a few practical, but as I deem them, very important considerations. Tennessee is now fully committed to a state of war with Mr. Lincoln, and had pledged her whole strength upon this issue. The struggle will be arduous and deadly -- perhaps protracted. I am not one of those who fear the final result, but I am forced to look to the ways and means. Some opportunity of knowing our public resources, and the radical change in our relations in trade, brought about by the action of the State, induced me to call the attention of the whole people to necessity of providing future supplies of clothing but the means of domestic industry. There was a time in the history of the State, when nine-tenths of our population were habitually clad in home-spuns. This was necessary, because no other resources were at their command. Now that same necessity is pressing upon us. Few goods have been brought from the North this Spring, owing to our troubles. We are soon to be blockaded on all sides, so that we will be driven to self-reliance. Are we equal to the occasion? I say we are. Our mothers and sisters all over the State, will at once resurrect their wheels and spinning machines and looms, and make them teem with linsey, jeans and domestic, to clothe their husbands and brothers who are fighting the battles of the country, as well as themselves. And let no ladies feel humiliation in turning her hand to his divine task of patriotism, or in being clothed in fair cheeks, the product of her own toil. I would that every man, woman and child in the State, were this day covered with the homely garb of our ancestors! There would be a moral power in the spectacle, but I am not I pursuit of a mere fancy. Where, I ask, are your soldiers to get their supply of clothing next fall, unless it is manufactured at home? It is not that we may want the money to buy with, but the material cannot be imported. We must make it, or the soldiers must suffer -- and now is the time to begin. Let no one wait for another, but let all alike, rich and poor, at once, and without a moment's delay, inaugurate the good work, and the busy hum of their industry. In this way our women can become benefactors, and help us fight the great battle before us. The soldier will bless the beautiful lass who was not to proud to labor for him, while he was toiling and periling life [sic] for his country. But I wish to say a word to the men who remain at home. Make all the leather you can, for it will all be needed. Let not a foot of ground lie dormant but make it yield something for subsistence. Our enemies say they will starve us out -- that we will soon be naked and famishing, and compelled to surrender. Let us show them that we are as fruitful in expedients to preserve life, as are terrible in avenging our wrongs. I say then to all, mothers, sisters, wives and sweethearts, fathers, brothers and sons, beset [?] yourselves without hesitation! Let us all pull together in the glorious work of defending the State against the enemy, and feel that in doing so, we are indulging in privilege rather than performing a task. Messrs. Editors, I merely intended to call attention to these matter of grave moment, and I would thank you to give your brother editors of the Sate a hint to insert this communication in their columns. It may do good.


Nashville, June 11, 1861.

Clarksville Chronicle, June 21, 1861.


23, Guerrilla attack on train near La Fayette, Tennessee

No circumstantial reports filed.

Excerpt from the Report of Col. Edward H. Wolfe, Fifty-second Indiana Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, regarding the expedition to Tupelo, MS from LaGrange, Tenn., July 5-21, 1864 including attack on train near La Fayette, Tenn., June 23.

HDQRS. THIRD Brig., THIRD DIV., 16TH ARMY CORPS, Memphis, Tenn., July 29, 1864.

LIEUT.: In compliance with ordered from headquarters Third Division, Sixteenth Army Corps, July 28, 1864, I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by my command during the late expedition to Tupelo, Miss.:

In obedience to Special Orders, No. 63, paragraph VI, headquarters Right Wing, Sixteenth Army Corps, Memphis, Tenn., June 23, 1864, my command, after having been paid off, proceeded by train to Moscow, on the 23d. When near La Fayette a party of guerrillas fired into the train, killing and wounding several. Some of the men who jumped or fell off the cars were captured and afterward murdered. Their bodies were recovered by a party of the Second Iowa Cavalry and recognized by Lieut. McDonald, One hundred and seventy-eighty New York Volunteers. At Moscow the brigade remained until the 27th, when it took up the line of march for LaGrange, which was reached the same day.

* * * *

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E.H. WOLFE, Colonel, Commanding Third Brigade

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 39, pt. I, p. 295.


[1] General Winfield Scott, head of the U. S. Army