Tuesday, February 19, 2013

2/19/13 cwn

     19, Governor Isham G. Harris' Proclamation to the People of Tennessee

Executive Department, February 19, 1862

The fall of Fort Donelson, so bravely and so gloriously defended[1], and accomplished o­nly by vastly superior numbers, opened the approaches to your State, which is not to become the grant theatre wherein a brave people will show to the world, by their heroism and suffering, that they are worthy to be, what they have solemnly declared themselves to be, freemen. [sic] 

Tennesseeans [sic], the soil of your state is polluted with the footstep of the invader. Your brethren of the advance guard have fallen -- nobly yielding life in the endeavor to secure for you and your children the priceless inheritance of freedom. The tyrant and the usurper marches his hosts upon your homes. They come flushed with temporary success and confident in the numbers, yet relying upon your tame submission, the hour is full of trial and danger, yet it is such, in the providence of God, as will test our manhood and or spirit. Let us, as o­ne man, rally to meet the responsibilities thus cast upon us to repel the invader and maintain the assertion of our independence.

As Governor of your State, and Commander-in-Chief of its army, I call upon every able-bodied man of the State, without regard to age, to enlist in its service. I command him who can obtain a weapon, to march with our armies. I ask him who can repair or forge an arm, to make it ready at o­nce for the soldier. I call upon every citizen to open his purse and his storehouses of provisions to the brave defenders of our soil. I bid the old and the young, wherever they may be, to stand as pickets to our struggling armies.

To our soldiers, the gallant volunteers who are already enlisted in the defence [sic] of our cause, I appeal. Your discipline, your skill, and your courage, constitute the hope, the pride, and the reliance of your State. Amid the thickening perils that now environ us, undismayed and undaunted, re-volunteer, and from the ashes of our reverses the fire of faith in the liberty for which we strive will be rekindled. You have done well and nobly, but the work is not yet accomplished. The enemy still flaunts his banner in your face; his foot is upon your native soil; the echo of his drum is heard in your mountains and valleys; hideous desolation will soon mark his felon track, unless he is repelled. To you who are armed, and have looked death in the face, who have been tried and are the "Old Guard," the State appeals to uphold her standard. Encircle that standard with your valor and your heroism, and abide the fortunes of war so long as an enemy of your State shall dare confront you. The enemy relies upon your forfeiture in you want of endurance. Disappoint him!

To those who have not enlisted for the war, I appeal. Go, cheer your brethren already there. Your native land now calls upon you; you have o­nly waited until you were needed. The confederate government calls upon me to raise thirty-two regiments. You will be armed. Come, then, it is for your independence, your homes, your wives, and your children, Tennesseeans [sic], you are to fight. Who will, who can, remain idly at home? Will you stand still and let others pour our their blood for your safety? Patriotism and manhood would alike cry out against you.

Let not a day pass until you are enrolled. Let the volunteer in the field reenlist. Let him who can, volunteer for the war. Let those of whom imperative obligations demand a shorter term of service, muster as militia-men.

Tennesseeans [sic]! you have a name in history; you have a traditional renown; shall these be forfeited in the day of your country's trial? Shall the black banner of subjugation wave in triumph over ;your altars and your homes? Shall there breathe between you and your God an earthly master, before whom your proud spirit shall quail and you knees be made to tremble? By the memory of our glorious dead -- by the sacred names of our wives and children -- by our own faith and our own manhood, no! Forbid it, sons of Tennessee; forbid it, men of the plains and of the mountains. I invoke you now to follow me; I am of the army of Tennessee, determined upon the field to stake the honor and name of that army of which you have made me commander-in-chief. It is there that I will meet with you whatever may threaten or imperil the fair fame of either. In view of the exposed condition of your capital, and by authority of a resolution adopted by the General Assembly, I have called the members of the Legislature together at this city.

It was a duty I conceived I owed you to remove, whilst it could be done in perfect safety, the archives of the State. This is not a fit occasion to inquire how your capital became so exposed. A series of reverses, not looked for, made the way to Nashville comparatively easy in the enemy. [sic] Temporarily and until our armies have made a stand, the officers of state will be located in Memphis.

Leaving the officers of state to the immediate discharge of their duties, I repair to the field, and again invoke you to follow me to the battle wherein the fortunes of all are to be lost or won. Orders to the militia will be issued with this proclamation, designating the rendezvous, and giving such other directions as may be necessary and proper. I am pleased to accompany this proclamation with the assurance that active aid and heavy support will be given you by the confederate government.

Isham G. Harris

Rebellion Record, Vol. 4, p. 194.

[1] Harris forgot to add "unsuccessfully defended." There's no success like failure, and a failure is no success at all.



19, Colonel Beatty on John Hunt Morgan

* * * *

The expeditions sent out to capture John Morgan have all been failures. His own knowledge of the country is thorough, and besides, he has in his command men from every neighborhood, who know not only every road and cow-path in the locality, but every man, woman and child. The people serve him also, by advising him of all our movements. They guide him to our detachments when they are weak, and warn him away when strong. Were the rebel army in Ohio, and as bitterly hated by the people of that State as the Nationals are by those of Kentucky and Tennessee, it would be an easy matter indeed to hang upon the skirts of that army, pick up stragglers, burn bridges, attack wagon trains, and now and then pounce down on an outlying picket and take it in.

Beatty, Citizen Soldier, pp. 221-222.



19, "...the cuncussion is so greate that they cannot stand it...."Frank M. Guernsey's letter home to Fannie 

Camp in the Navy Yard Memphis

Tenn Feby 19th,1863.

My Dear Fannie:

Uncle Sam's mail has finally succeeded in bringing me a letter from you dated Feby. 4th, and I sincerely hope that the exertion he has made may not prove too much for him, as I hope for more in the future. I began to think the old fellow a very weak backed individual if he could bring me only one letter in the course of one or two months, and am waiting now very patiently to see if my fears proove groundless.

I suppose ere this reaches you you will have seen Sergeant Clendenning and have heard more of the news and more concerning us than I can write in a week, he promised me to see you and tell you of my evil doings, etc. I should have sent a note and some little fixins from Dixie, but I was not aware that he was going home until about ten minutes before he strated and then it was to late. I don't thing Glen knew that he was going until a little while before he started. You know that such movements are kept very still in the army. I suppose there is no harm now in telling their object, they are after deserters some of which never joined the Regmt. there was a greater number of deserters from Glens Company than from any other one Company in the Regiment. Oh! wouldn't I liked to have gone north with him. I would have given almost anything for the privilege, but my position in the Regmt., is such that it would be very difficult for me to get a furlough even for a new days unless I was sick, but I hope I may never have occasion to get a furlough on that ground. I had rather be well and do my duty like a soldier, than to be in the Surgeons care. I have pictured out in my mind what glorious times we would have had, had I been there with G. what sleigh-rides, sings, etc., it is enough to make a soldiers mouth water to think of it, but I do not envy G. the pleasure he will take, he is deserving of some favor of that kind, he is a good fellow and does his duty as well as any Soldier in the Regiment.

We are having quite an interesting time with the Rebels on the opposit [sic] side of the river, they come down on the Arkansas shore to make observations of our movements and as often as they show themselves, they are sure to have a lively time, our troops immediately open fire with shell, and in a very short time they are not to be seen, day before yesterday they fired three shells from those enormous Mortars which you read so much about at the storming of Island No. 10, they make a noise as loud as seven thunders, when they are fired the men all leave the boat except the man who pulls it off and he steps into a skiff beside the mortar-boat, the cuncussion is so greate that they cannot stand it, there was a little town named Hopefield on the opposite side of the River which the rebels used to occupy, they burned a Steam boat a few days ago for us, and that with numerous other acts of a similar kind finally brought upon them a judgment the penalty of which they suffered yesterday, about noon yesterday a gun boat accompanied by a boat with troops steamed across the river and very deliberately set the Town on fire, a few of the Rebels showed themselves but four or five shell from the Gun boat made them skedaddle mighty quick. The town was about as large as "Weyaumega and there is not a house or any building left standing, the worke of destruction was complete, some of 
the buildings burned splendidly, it done me good to see them burn, I tell you, it seemed like righteous punishment for them.

I began this letter yesterday but had not time to finish it as I am very busy now most of the time, last evening the adjutant was fencing with a man and received a Super thrust in his right arm which will disable him for the present from doing duty, consequently I have both his and my own work to do, it has been a very busy day up town. Genl. Logans division embarked for Vicksburg. I wish you could have been here Fanny and seen the sight, you could have formed some faint idea of the magnitude and grandeur of our army. There were about thirty very large steamers to transport the troops and the men were as thick as bees on them, the soldiers most of them seemed to be in good spirits, and eager for the campaign, though many poor fellows will never return again, it is reported very sickly at Vicksburg and probably will be until the rainy season is over which will not be very long now.

Then Fanny you began to fear that I doubted your love and constancy did you? You can releave yourself of all such fears dear Fanny for my faith in you is unbounded. it seemed strange to be sure that I got no letters for so long a time, but I knew that it was not fault of yours, for you had promised to write me and I knew you would. No Fanny however cynical I may have been I assure you there is nothing of the kind in my affections for you and I never expect there will be, You seeme to think that this war is a bad thing, and so do I, the prospects are very fair for our staying our regular three years, though I am in hopes that it may be closed before that time, it is hard to be separated from friends and loved ones so long, but you know Fanny that if our country demands the sacrifice we must submit without a murmur or complaint. I received a letter from Mother and sister been a few days since, they thought from the way I wrote that I was getting discouraged wit the prospects of things, it was quite amusing to see how they tryed to sheer me up. They are mistaken in me if they expect me to show the whole feather.

Fanny please tell Clen that Corpl. Smith of Co. "F" is dead and was buryed yesterday with military honors, he was shot a few days ago while doing duty, it is no very uncommon thing to hear of shooting and murder in this city but they have to keep pretty straight when our boys are around. I came very near getting in a scrape the other night myself, all of the Non Ccommissioned Sstaff (myself included) borrowed Commissioned officers coats and went up town to the theatre, the guards arrested all non Commissioned officers and privates found on the street after dark, but we trusted to our shoulder strapes to take us through, when we were passing one of the streets lamps the Sergeant of the guard recognized us and arrested us, well we went before the Capt. of the Provost Guard who by the way is a particular friend of mine, I gave him the wink and he ordered the guard to let us pass as we were all right, if he had been some Captain we would all have gone to the lockup to spend the night, the Col. gave us a little talking too and told us not to do it again. Glen laughed at me a good deal for getting caught in such a scrape but it is half to own it aint it Fanny.
I don't see but what I have written a pretty lone letter, but you must excuse all deficiencys for I have written it be odd spels [sic] when I could get time. I received the circ lar you sent. I am much obliged, should like to have been there very much and heard those two Miss Dotys sing.
But I must close please give my love to all and accept much yourself, please write soon.

Yours affectionaly

F. M. Guernsey

P.S. Tell your mother if she will send that cat down here I will extract her teeth so that she will do no more injury.


F. M. Guernsey Correspondence



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


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


SIR: I have the honor to submit the following report o­n the action of the medical department of the Eleventh Army Corps at the battle of Lookout Valley, or Wauhatchie:

On the morning of the 28th October, 1863, the Second and Third Divisions of the Eleventh Corps broke camp at Whiteside's Station, o­n the Chattanooga and Nashville Railroad, and followed slowly and cautiously the wagon road that leads over a spur of Raccoon Mountain into the Valley of Lookout Creek. At any moment the enemy might appear and an engagement commence. At any moment the medical officers might be called o­n to provide for the wounded. Accordingly, the acting medical director, Surg. Robert Hubbard, Seventeenth Connecticut Volunteers, was engaged with the surgeon-in-chief of the two divisions in looking for favorable locations for a field hospital, and in providing for the most economical employment of the medical and hospital stores o­n hand. There was urgent need of such economy. The command had left Bridgeport with no other transportation than the ambulances. No hospital tents were taken, and not o­nly was there a very limited amount of medical stores, especially stimulants, o­n hand when they marched, but a portion of these, through an error of the ambulance officers, had been left behind.
No enemy was seen until well o­n in the afternoon, when the troops had passed the junction of the Trenton and Chattanooga Railroad, and entered a dense belt of woods that at this point stretched across Lookout Valley.
Here we came upon the enemy's outposts, and an irregular picket firing ensued. Our cavalry was withdrawn, the Second Brigade of the Second Division deployed in skirmish line and ordered to advance, while a portion of the First Brigade followed the railroad track o­n the right. The enemy made no resistance, but fired their guns toward the advancing line and hastened to make good their escape.

The casualties, from their irregular fire, amounted to 1 killed and 3 slightly wounded. A frame house, with spacious verandas, about 2 miles in the rear, had been chosen for a provisional field hospital, but o­nly 1 of the wounded was sent there.

Before sunset the troops had reached their destined camping grounds, the Third Division being located in the valley, opposite what has since been called Tyndale's Hill, and the Second about half a mile nearer the river, o­n the main road. Near Wauhatchie Station, Gen. Geary, with the Second Division of the Twelfth Corps, was encamped. The ambulances of the Eleventh Corps were parked with the ammunition train, near the Second Division. The night was clear and the moon almost full. Shortly after midnight our slumbers were disturbed by rapid musketry in the direction of Geary's command.

The Third Division of our corps was immediately ordered to move at double-quick to their assistance; but hardly were they fairly under way when a volley from the two hills which [are] o­n either side of the road leading over Lookout Mountain to Chattanooga, showed that the enemy were upon our flank. The Third Division was immediately ordered to stop, face toward the hills, and take the o­ne o­n the south of the pass, while the Second Brigade of the Second Division was directed to take by assault the hill north of the road. These orders were at o­nce executed, the enemy making but little resistance at the former, but so much the more determined and obstinate opposition at the latter point. Here was where we had our principal loss, and here the battle was decided, as the enemy was aware that this was the key to the position. This position lost, they at o­nce retired and the firing ceased. This was 2.30 a.m.

In the meantime, a site had been chosen in a woods about a mile north of Tyndale's Hill, close to and o­n the right of the road to Brown's Ferry, convenient to wood and water, for a field hospital; fires built, candles procured, straw collected from a neighboring barn for beds, amputating tables knocked together, and all the stores of the different regiments deposited there, the whole under charge of Surg. W. H. Gunkle, Seventy-third Pennsylvania Volunteers. The moment the firing ceased the ambulances were put in motion for the scene of action, and plied to and for until daylight.

At earliest dawn I rode over the field of the Second Division, and so well had the ambulance corps performed its duty that I found o­nly 3 wounded still o­n the field. o­ne of these was a Confederate, shot in the knee, in whom the collapse was so marked that the ambulance men had supposed him dying. A second had received a musket ball in the head, which entered posteriorly, carrying away a large fragment of the left parietal bone and much of the corresponding lobe of the brain. The man was senseless, but groaning piteously. He was laid in an adjacent cabin, and lived until toward evening.

At the hospital 109 wounded were received, and entered upon the list. Of these, 3 were Confederates. Four amputations were performed, two of thigh, o­ne of the upper third of humerus, and o­ne of three fingers. Eight died at the hospital. The whole number of deaths are not received in this office. Those who died at the hospital were buried in the field across the road, while those who were killed outright were interred at the foot of Smith's Hill. All these were subsequently exhumed, and the remains transferred to the national cemetery at Chattanooga. At that time (February, 1864), there were 30 bodies found, but a number had been taken North by their friends.

As soon as it was clear that we should have a number of wounded, the acting medical director sent to Chattanooga for a barrel of whisky and other supplies. We had hardly received them ere orders came to send all the wounded at o­nce to the general field hospital over the river. By the middle of the afternoon few were left o­n this bank. In consequence of this the statistics above given are not correct. Many of the wounded were never entered o­n the records of the hospital.

Some primary operations were not performed there. The results of all are unknown. I shall not offer guesses, but conclude with some observations of a general character.
All the wounds recorder were by small-arms, except some contusions, and o­ne shell wound. The latter must have been from the battery o­n Point Lookout, as we used no artillery during the affair, while the artillerists o­n the mountain dropped their shells with the greatest impartiality over the field.

In such an action as this, if anywhere, we would look for bayonet wounds. Here was a charge--a hand-to-hand contest literally; some of the contusions were given by clubbed muskets. Not a bayonet wounds is recorded. I looked for them, but neither saw nor heard of any. There was none.

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.[1]

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, pp. 99-101.

[1] o­ne wonders how much he limped and how unmovable the position of the "wounded extremity" was. Certainly he sacrificed much of his manhood for the cause.

James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214

(615)-532-1550  x115

(615)-532-1549  FAX


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