Sunday, April 13, 2014

4.13.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

        13, Combined Navy and Army Destruction of the Charleston & Memphis Railroad Bridge at Bear Creek
Destruction of railroad bridge over Bear Creek, Tennessee River, April 13, 1862.
Report of Lieutenant Gwin, U. S. Navy, commanding U. S. S. Tyler.
Pittsburg, Tenn., April 14, 1862.
SIR: I have the honor to inform you that the Tyler and Lexington convoyed two transports, containing 2,000 troops, infantry and cavalry, under the command of General Sherman, to Chickasaw, Ala., where they disembarked and proceeded rapidly to Bear Creek Bridge, the crossing of Memphis and Charleston Railroad, for the purpose of destroying it and as much of trestlework as they could find.
I am happy to state that the expedition was entirely successful. The bridge, consisting of two spans, 110 feet each, was completely destroyed (i.e., superstructure), together with some 510 feet of trestlework and half mile of telegraph line.
The rebels made a feeble resistance to our cavalry, 120 in number, but soon made a hasty retreat, losing 4 killed; our loss none.
I regret to state that in firing a salute on the 12th, John D. Seymore, boatswain's mate, was so much injured by the premature discharge of a gun as to cause his death yesterday morning.
Allow me to congratulate you and those under your command on your great success at Island No. 10.
Enclosed I send you Lieutenant Commanding Shirk's report.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Lieutenant, Commanding Division of Gunboats
on Tennessee River.
Flag-Officer A. H. FOOTE,
Commanding Naval Forces on Western Waters
NOR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pp. 22-23.

        13, Letter from Lafayette McDowell in the Army of Tennessee at Tullahoma to his sister Amanda in White County, relating conditions in the army
Tullahoma, Tennessee
April 13, 1863
Dear Sister:
I send a letter every chance but received nothing from you. Polly Morris says she will go to see you and take this letter, and I know of another she will have to take. Tell Pollie Stone so if you see her.
I suppose Mrs. Camron had heard that we were all starving to death. You never saw such a load of provisions in your life as they all brought down. I live well enough these times. I have wished many times I had not written for anything and should not have done so only that Mr. Shugart told me you had more four than you had any use for and I have to buy here. If Mr. Shugart comes down, you can send the flour at least and anything else you please but don't send anything that will spoil. All the people are sending provisions which they always do when we are starved. We will fight here before long, which may cause us to move, but I believe it will be forward. I do not calculate a hard battle for our regt. [sic] this time. As we had the hardest place before, we are apt to have the easiest this time.
I do not feel very uneasy for us this time. But of one thing you may be sure, if the Yankees are able to hold us half a fight, it will be the greatest battle ever fought in the south [sic], for this army in its present condition could fight three times the force we fought at Murfreesboro as easy as we fought them there. I never saw an army in such trim. The Gens. may easily say we are ready for a fight.
I shall as much as possible keep my business so arranged as to place what I am able to own at your disposal in case of accident. If the time should come that you should have to live without me, remember that raising your support on a very small scale is worth more than all the wages you can ever earn. The main object is [to] live during the war, which you easily do by raising all you can this summer with the start you have. I shall not make money hereafter (unless I am promoted). As for an honest watch or horse trade now and then as I used to make, I acknowledge rascally speculators have shamed me out of countenance. None but a rascal can trade to any advantage here. So I give up the chase. I want to hear from Father to know what he has done with the money I left at home and that I sent by Mr. Sugar. In my last I spoke of being out of money, but I now have more, having collected some I had loaned. Uncle Jeff owes me $200 yet, which I can get when Capt. Dibrell comes back; at the end of this month, if I have luck, I shall have $300 to dispose of some way. It will take $100 for my expenses until my next draw, I mean from the time of this one at the end of this month, or at least I shall retain that amount in my pocket. With the rest I desire to pay what may remain unpaid of Father's debts. What is then left I desire to spend for valuable property at even high expense
Diary of Amanda McDowell.

        13, Skirmish at Mink Springs, near Cleveland
APRIL 13, 1864.-Skirmish at Mink Springs, near Cleveland, Tenn.
No. 1.-Col. Edward M. McCook, Second Indiana Cavalry, commanding brigade.
No. 2.-Capt. James M. Comstock, First Wisconsin Cavalry.
No. 1.
Report of Col. Edward M. McCook, Second Indiana Cavalry, commanding brigade.
CLEVELAND, TENN., April 13 1864.
I have the honor to report that this morning at daylight the enemy, about 800 strong, surrounded and attacked our outpost at Mink Springs at crossing of Ducktown and Federal roads, capturing-two of whom were wounded. Capt. Smith, topographical engineer of Gen. Johnson's staff, was captured with his papers. No blame attached to the conduct of men. I have sent an adequate force in pursuit, and hope to overtake the enemy.
EDWARD M. McCOOK, Col., Cmdg.
CLEVELAND, TENN., April 13, 1864.
There was an omission in dispatch sent this morning. One commissioned officer and 18 men were captured, 2 of whom were wounded.
No. 2.
Report of Capt. James M. Comstock, First Wisconsin Cavalry.
CAMP FIRST WISCONSIN CAVALRY, Cleveland, East Tenn., April 15, 1864.
SIR: I have the honor to report that I was stationed on outpost duty on the Cleveland and Ducktown road, 6 miles from Cleveland, on the morning of the 12th of April, 1864, with 2 commissioned officers and 100 men. I sent Lieut. Caldwell, in command of 25 men, all of the First Wisconsin Cavalry, to relieve an outpost picket 4 miles beyond on the same road.
On the morning of the 13th instant, at daybreak, I was informed through the citizens that a large body of the enemy's cavalry, probably 1,500 strong, was advancing in the direction of the outpost, 4 miles beyond me. I immediately dispatched a party in the direction of the picket, and ascertained that they had been attacked at daylight on all sides by largely superior numbers; that after resisting a short time, in which 1 rebel was report killed and 1 wounded, the lieutenant and 19 men, with arms, horses, and equipments, were captured; 2 of the latter were wounded. Six men escaped, losing all of their horses and equipments and a portion of their arms.
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. M. COMSTOCK, Capt. First Wisconsin Cavalry, Cmdg. Outpost.
OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. I, pp. 668-669.

        13, Skirmish at Pleasant Hill Landing
No circumstantial reports filed.

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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