Wednesday, June 25, 2014

6.25.14 Tennessee Civil War Notes

25, Militia Call Up in Clarksville Militia Orders One. Headquarters, 91st Regiment Clarksville June 25th, 1861 The Captains of the Militia of the 91st Regiment – and in the event of the absence or vacancy of the captainship – the 1st Lieut., will report immediately the strength of his company, and also the number of Rifles, Shot Guns, Muskets, Swords and other weapons owned by those living within his command, and subject to military duty. Captains will fortheith proceed to organize their commands, preparatory to active service in the field, at any moment's call. Captains will report immediately to the Adjutant, B. A. Rogers. By order of J. S. NEBLETT, B. A. Rogers, Adj't. Clarksville, June 27th, 1861. Clarksville Chronicle, July 19, 1861. 25, Letter of John A. Ritter, 49th Indiana Volunteers June 25, 1862 from South of Cumberland Gap, Tenn. Camp Cumberland Gap, Ten. June 25, 1862 My Dearly beloved wife, With more than ordinary pleasure I take up my pen to write you a few lines. I am with our Brigade (Gen. Carter 24) encamapt [sic] three miles south of the Cumberland Gap on beautiful camp ground where we have good water in abundance. There is a great difference in the water South of the Cumberland Mountains and north of the mountains. I went last Friday to Barberville 35 miles from here and I did not get a good drink of water from the time I crossed the mountain till I Returned on Sunday. I think that we are in a very healthy country. The health of our Reg[iment]. is improving verry [sic] fast. I am in good health at present. My health has improved every day since I left the Ford. I passed the ford going and coming from Barberville. I was sent to see how our sick were. I found most of them well and anxious to come up to the Reg[iment]. Faucett is improving verry [sic] fast and I expect him up tomorrow. We sent waggons [sic] down yesterday to bring up the camp equipage etc. and all the men that were well enough to come. I found about 60 that are able to come to camp. I wrote you a letter when we first came to this place. I was so hurried that I scarcely know what I did write. I wrote you a letter from Boston but the mail facility are so bad I think it doubtful wheather [sic] you got it or not. I Recd. a letter from you last night of the 17. I saw R. Higgins and A. Knight at Barberville. J. B. Pinnick left here day before yesterday for home. He says that he would call and see you. It so happened that I was not with him but verry [sic] little whilst he was out here. He is a good talker and he can give you much information. Our Caverlay [sic] captured 25 wagons loaded with provisions and 500 Enfield rifles from the Rebbels [sic] last night (Mondays Caverlay [sic]). They also took 15 Beaf [sic] Cattle. They took one Col. and two Leut. [sic] Cols. of Sesesh Caveralry [sic] guarding the train. The train was from Lexington, Ky. They were captured in Virginea [sic]. [sic] The Rebbes [sic] were surrounded before they Knew that they were in danger. They tryed [sic] to Run as usual but they met forces every way and they hoisted the white Flag. We have but little information where the Rebbels [sic] are. They left the Gap and went to Morristown. It suposed [sic] that they have gone to Georgia. It is thought that there will be no more Fighting in Tenesee [sic]. [sic] There are still squads of Rebbe [sic] Caveralry [sic] in the neighborhood. Col. Ray has been ordered to Nashville. It is suposed [sic] under sensure. [sic] If he comes back and takes command of the Reg[iment]. there will be but few offices left in the 49th. This is my opinion and I think I am not mistaken. I am realy [sic] sorry for the Col. His hopes are blasted for the Future as a military man. I have no confidence in him. I feel disposed to defend him as fare as he is right. He took it verry [sic] hard that he had to Leave that he had to Leave. If he had continued with us we would have been left behind in the expedition taking the Gap which is considered disgrace to be ordered to the rear at a time like that ocasion [sic]. [sic] Col. Keigwin has the confidence of the offices and men and if he does not keep the command since Col. Ray has Left and Keigwin has command all things have new life. The men are increasing in numbers for duty. As for the Drawes you may send them to me. Jim Faucett needs some drawers. We tryed [sic] to buy them but could not. We can get govermet [sic] Drawers but they are no acount [sic]. If you get this in time you may sent Faucett a couple pr. Drawers. I want a fine pr. pants but you cannot get them for me. I will send to New Albany for a pr. the oportunity [sic] that I have. I let my measure with S. S. Moor at N. A. and if he still has it he can make me a pr. The military goods have changed since I came in to the service. It is a light Sky blue. We have not got any news for some time. The latest paper that I have seen is the 11 and what is going on out side of our little world is all unknown to us. The mails are to be established to this place imedialy [sic]. [sic] The contractor was to have been here yesterday. How long we will remain here is all in the future. Col. Keigwin sayed [sic] that we would likely [sic] remain here five or six weeks but of course this was only his opinion. If the Rebbels [sic] had have [sic] stood their ground and fought us at the Gap we never could have taken it by fighting them in the Gap. It is suposed [sic] to be the Stronges [sic] place in the U. S. The aproaches [sic] to it are narrow and their Battery could have slain men faster than they could have been filled up. If Liut. [sic]Charles has not left he can bring me a pr. of pants from S. S. Moors and you can send the money to pay for them By Mr. Buskirk when he goes to N. A. and if Moore has sent them to me by any one Charles need not bring them. He can inquire wheather [sic] he has sent them to me. I have the _____? you sent me _____? by all. The provision are a Barberville yet I expect them tomorrow. They cost us $9.00 Freight. I must bring this letter to a close. I hope and expect to see you before Long. Yours as ever, John A. Ritter Ritter Correspondence 25, Skirmish at (Old) Fosterville CHRISTIANA, June 25, 1863--9 p. m. GEN.: We drove the rebels back through Old Fosterville into Guy's Gap this afternoon, from which they opened on us with artillery. The gap is very strong and difficult to turn, except by making a wide detour. From the best information I can get, there are three or four regiments of infantry in Guy's Gap, with one battery. There are other infantry regiments a short distance back toward Shelbyville. Gen. Wharton's division of cavalry is also at and about the gap. [W. T.] Martin's brigade of cavalry left Tuesday morning for Chapel Hill, and probably Wiggins' battery ditto. One regiment of cavalry, supposed to be the Eighth Texas, left in the direction of Manchester this morning. Mitchell whipped them handsomely at Middleton yesterday. Killed some 10 or 15 men and 50 horses, besides the wounded. How are Thomas and McCook progressing?Respectfully, G. GRANGER, Maj.-Gen. OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, p. 533. HDQRS. CHIEF OF CAVALRY, Camp near Winchester, July 8, 1863. GEN.: * * * * June 25, marched the command, by the cross-roads at Jamison's farm, to Christiana, where I joined the force under Gen. Gordon Granger. Our pickets near Fosterville having been driven in during the afternoon by the enemy's cavalry, Col. Patrick was sent, which his own regiment, the Fifth Iowa, and the Fourth Michigan, to ascertain his force. After a spirited skirmish, the enemy was driven back upon his infantry force at Guy's Gap, where a battery of artillery opened upon Col. Patrick's command. He retired at dark, with no loss, to his camp. June 26, rained nearly all day.[1] Time spent in getting up forage and rations and posting detachments to watch the movements of the enemy. Next morning, June 27, orders were received from the general commanding the army to dislodge the enemy from Guy's Gap. At 9 o'clock we left Christiana for the gap, Gen. Mitchell's division leading, with orders to take the right-hand road at Old Fosterville, leading by Middleton, and turn the gap. The division turned off the road for this purpose, and Minty's brigade was thus put in advance upon the pike. Skirmishing commenced at Old Fosterville, and an inspection of the enemy's position convincing me that the enemy was not in force of all arms at the gap, I asked Gen. Granger to permit a direct attack upon the pass. He acquiesced in this, and, pushing forward, our forces deployed. The enemy abandoned their position and fled toward Shelbyville, closely pursued by the First Middle Tennessee Cavalry, Col. Galbraith commanding, supported by the Fourth Regular Cavalry, Capt. McIntyre commanding. Immediately afterward I directed Col. Minty to support this movement with his whole brigade. The enemy in considerable force, consisting of Martin's division and a part of Wharton's, all under command of Wheeler, made a stand at the fortifications 4 miles north of Shelbyville, where they commenced shelling our advance. Col. Minty immediately sent the Fourth Michigan to the right, dismounted, but, finding the distance they must necessarily travel was very great, they remounted and advanced through the abatis on horseback, and, after a severe skirmish, they succeeded in getting in on the enemy's left flank, when they fled in haste. As the enemy began to mount, the Seventh Pennsylvania charged up the pike, supported by the Fourth Regulars, and, deploying to the right and left as they passed through the eartheorks, succeeded in capturing many of the rebels. From this point up to the time that our advance reached the precincts of Shelbyville the whole brigade pursued them closely, but when they again opened with their artillery, our men being much scattered in the long charge, fell back out of range and reformed. Gen. Granger and myself were still at Guy's Gap when the state of affairs came to us by couriers. I immediately wrote an order to Col. Minty to charge their battery and take it, at the same time Gen. Mitchell being ordered to support the movement with his entire division. A section of the Eighteenth Ohio Battery, Capt. Aleshire commanding, preceded Mitchell's division. Shortly afterward Gen. Granger and myself started to Shelbyville, but before arriving at the place, the energy of Gen. Mitchell and Col. Minty, nobly seconded by the gallant troops under their command, had won for us a decided victory over the rebels. The latter had been dislodged from the stand they made at the line of entrenchments, principally by the gallantry of the Fourth Michigan, Maj. Mix commanding. Their regiment attacked them with revolving rifles. The rebels fled to the town, where they attempted another stand on the line of the public square and railroad depot, but a part of Col. Minty's brigade charging them on the pike, in the teeth of their battery, and Col. Campbell's brigade cutting off their retreat at the upper bridge over Duck River, the enemy was overthrown, routed, his cannon and 591 prisoners captured, including 6 field officers, and a large number, estimated as high as 200, of the enemy killed, wounded, and drowned in Duck River. The charge upon the enemy's battery was led by the Seventh Pennsylvania Cavalry, headed by Capt. Davis, and, as the charge was made down a stone pike, by fours, upon a three-gun battery, supported by mounted infantry (dismounted), the annals of this war will not probably show a more gallant charge. The enemy threw away their arms in their flight and two of their generals-Wheeler and Martin-escaped by swimming the river. Some five or six hundred stand of arms and a considerable amount of commissary and ordnance stores fell into our hands. For the details of this gallant affair, I refer you to the reports of Gen. Mitchell and Col. Minty. At midnight I learned from one of my scouts that Forrest's command, which had floundered in the mud all day between Unionville and Middleton, was crossing Duck River 4 miles below us, in great disorder, and endeavoring to escape to Tullahoma. I consulted Gen. Granger as to the propriety of moving our whole force to attack and intercept him, but the general was of the opinion that the command was too much wearied to move in the night. As the matter turned out, I think it was very unfortunate that this attack was not made, as I think we could have completely routed this part of Forrest's force. [June] 28, marched the command back to Guy's Gap and supplied ourselves with rations and ammunition. [June] 29, having detached four regiments from my command for service at Murfreesborough, I marched the remainder, starting at 1 a. m., to Shelbyville, hoping to surprise some of Forrest's stragglers, but finding no rebels in Shelbyville, marched the command to Fairfield, Mitchell's First Brigade going on to Beech Grove. [June] 30, moved from Fairfield to Manchester; but owing to scarcity of forage, marched Mitchell's division back, by the Pan-Handle road, to Walker's Mill. July 1, Col. Minty's brigade marched back to Walker's Mill. Learning, at 2 p. m., that Bragg's army had evacuated Tullahoma, orders were given for the entire cavalry force to march to Pelham, via Hillsborough. Gen. Turchin, with a part of Col. Long's brigade, not more than 400 men in all, and Capt. Stokes, with one section of his battery, started for Hillsborough at 11 p. m. Gen. Mitchell's division and Minty's brigade arrived at Manchester the morning of July 2. It having been ascertained that the enemy had not retreated by the way of Pelham, a courier was sent to Gen. Turchin to change his direction and march to Decherd. The main column, under my command, marched early in the morning for the same point, via Morris' Ford. We arrived at this place at 1 p. m., and found that the small force (only twelve companies) under Gen. Turchin's command had been repulsed in their attempt to cross in the forenoon. Gen. Turchin, having arrived in advance of my column, immediate measures were taken to force the passage. Gen. Mitchell was directed to cross the upper and Gen. Turchin the lower ford. This was effected with little opposition-a fortunate circumstance, as the current was swift, and almost swam a horse. Col. Long's small brigade crossed first, and was soon engaged in a very heavy skirmish with the enemy's cavalry, driving them in the direction of Decherd. The remainder of Turchin's and Mitchell's divisions came to the support as soon as they had crossed, and the enemy was pressed until night closed. This skirmish was disastrous to the enemy, 1 of his colonels being killed and 1 mortally wounded, who fell into our hands, besides 20 killed and left on the field. The troops camped during the night near the ford, and the artillery was crossed over. July 3, moved to Decherd, sending the Seventh Pennsylvania to Brakefield Point and Col. Campbell's brigade to Cowan. Found nothing but stragglers and deserters. Learned that the last of the rebels had crossed the mountains. Encamped at Decherd. The incessant rain and consequent condition of the roads rendered the operations of the cavalry difficult and exceedingly trying to men and horses. The impossibility of bringing up forage in wagons, and the absence of feed in the "Barrens" of the Cumberland Mountains, the constant rain depriving our poor beasts of their rest, has reduced the cavalry considerably. They now require some little rest and refitting. * * * *Sergeant [Henry B.] Wilson, of my escort, deserves special mention for his gallantry at Shelbyville, capturing almost unaided 12 or 15 prisoners. ~ ~ ~ Respectfully submitted. D. S. STANLEY, Maj.-Gen. and Chief of Cavalry. OR, Ser. I, Vol. 23, pt. I, pp. 538-541. 25, "Root Hog or Die." On Line street, in the vicinity of College street, there perambulates a large and hungry-looking specimen of the genus porcine, feminine gender. In the same locality lives a feminine negro [sic], the maternal ancestor of sundry little nigs [sic], who amuse themselves by playing on the street. Yesterday the party of the first party took a fancy to the rear part of the smallest specimen of the party of the second part. The little nig [sic] was pushed down-the hog seized him and ran, mother, children and friends running, following in the chase. Away they go, the hog holding on to the little nigger [sic], and the excitement running high, until at length a white man seized an axe with which he gave the hog a terrible blow upon the head. A grunt of pain followed, and the little nig [sic] fell, his anxious mother picking him up, and washing his dirty face with tears of joy at his deliverance from the jaws of the enemy. Nashville Dispatch, June 25, 1864. 25, "Sprinkling Streets." Provost Marshal Hunter Brooke has issued an order, or by command of Brig-Gen. [sic] Miller, to the following effect, viz.,: that "owing to the scarcity of water at this season of the year, the practice of watering or sprinkling the streets by hose attached to plugs in front of buildings within the city is hereby prohibited. The proprietors or tenants of all such buildings will be held responsible for all violations of this order. All buildings used as military officers or hospitals are excepted in the above prohibition." This exception of military offices does great injustice to the citizens who have paid the money in advance for the privilege of sprinkling. The quantify of water they use is very small compared with that used in front of military offices, the citizens' privilege to sprinkle being limited by law to certain hours, morning and evening, while the other may be found in operations at any and all times. It is scarcely possible the General is acquainted with all the facts in the case. Nashville Dispatch, June 25, 1864. 25, Hiring workers in Bedford county, an outcome of the transition from slave to free labor Shelbyville Tenn. June 25th 1864 Gov Andrew Johnson I write to you this morning to ask some information & to obtain some action on your part if you are authorised to act in the premises. There is now in and around this place, a Number of Negroes [sic] that have left their former masters, many of whom are without work, and the services of all are required, in the growing crops & the harvest that is not matured – The trouble is that there is no one here authorized to act in such cases, and persons fear to hire the Negroes [sic] as many of them belong to persons in this vicinity & trouble might grow out of it, under existing laws. It would be better for the Community for the Negroes to have work for them they can get provisions honestly & if they cannot git [sic] work they must eat & will eat. There is a gentlem[an] here by the mane of (Horner A F) who rented of and he has done all he could do to avoid difficulties about Negroes, & he finds from whom he could hire Negroes he would pay them from 20 to 26 dollars per month & the same difficulty arises with them[.] If you have the authority if you will appoint some one here to take charge of the contrabands and hire them out, or if you will authorize A F Horner to hire the hands he wants I will pledge my word for it, that he will not interfere [sic] with any negro [sic] that is at home, nor will he try to get one to quit his home as there is plenty here that have been here for 5 to 10 months to do all my house & will not do any thing that is not strictly honest[.] he [sic] is from Ohio and an acquaintance of my wife & has been here for about 12 months & intends to make this his home & is one of the most active energetic & business men of my acquaintance, & I feel a strong desire to keep such men with us[.] You will please examine the orders & grant the request if you have the power [.] Very Respectfully Thos. H. Coldwell Papers of Andrew Johnson, Vol., 6, pp. 755-756 [1] The entire Tullahoma Campaign was studded with skirmishes, sudden marches, incessant, heavy rain and deep, thick mud.

James B. Jones, Jr.
Public Historian
Tennessee Historical Commission
2941 Lebanon Road
Nashville, TN  37214
(615)-770-1090 ext. 123456
(615)-532-1549  FAX

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