Sunday, August 2, 2015

8.2.2015 Tennessee Civil War Notes

August 2, 1861-1864




2, "My soul is troubled to its greatest depth." An Extract from the Diary of Eliza Rhea Anderson Fain

Darkness, darkness all is dark as yet so far as our difficulties with each other are concerned. The troops from the North are still advancing. Troops are moving in from the South to meet and repel this attack with a determination and energy equal to that manifested by the bands of the Revolution. Surely we of the South do feel we are struggling for Liberty just as that devoted band felt; when they resisted British tyranny. Was not the great head of the church moving forward in that mighty work, is it not to his almighty arm we owe the existence and preservation of our Republican form of government until the present moment. When I say Republican I do not mean Black Republican. O no that seems to be as hostile to liberty as ever English rule had been. They seem to feel I am willing to set aside the Bible with all its holy precepts to man if, by so doing I can but exalt the North in her sectional feelings and prejudice.

My soul is troubled to its greatest depths. My husband, my sons are gone. The rests of the Holy Sabbath are broken up by this unholy strife. The sacredness of the home circle has been invaded-perhaps never again to be as it has been; our family altar has been broken down. We kneel in silence to the God of Battles and ask him to give us victory if it is consistent with his will and the great interests of the church. Why O why have our Northern brethren meddled withy our domestic institution of slavery; how little they know of the deep anguish many of us feel in regard to our servants for their immortal souls. And I do feel the judgements [sic] of Almighty God will rest upon the heads of the Northern people for their unjust interference and thereby thwarting our plans for the elevation of our colored people in a moral point of view. My servants have been so loyal to me ever since these difficulties have commenced. My soul rises in gratitude to that  being in whose hands are the hearts of all men. They see my troubles an seem to wish to do everything they can t make one happy, no words, no looks of indifference do I have from them. I have just written passes for Gus and Lewis to go to town to attend preaching this evening. This has been made necessary by Northern men.

Fain Diary.

            ca. 2, General P. G. T. Beauregard vs. the Memphis Vigilance Committee

A gentleman from Memphis informs us that Gen. Beauregard arrived there a few days since, and used great endeavors to keep his moments secret. Being a stranger and somewhat observant he attracted the attention of the Vigilance Committee, who arrested him as a spy and suspected person. The generalissimo of the Confederate forces had to send for Gen. Pillow to identify him, and the hero of Camargo[1]  soon convinced the vigilants that they had dug their ditch on the wrong side of the rampart of Memphian defence, whereupon Beauregard was discharged with apologies.

Louisville Daily Journal, June 4, 1861. [2]




            2, Major-General U. S. Grant urged to end guerrilla menace in West Tennessee, and payment in gold for cotton authorized

WAR DEPARTMENT, Washington City, August 2, 1862.

Maj. Gen. U. S. GRANT, Comdg., &c., Corinth:

Your letter of July 28 is just received. It is very desirable that you should clean out West Tennessee...of all organized enemies. If necessary, take up all active sympathizers, and either hold them as prisoners or put them beyond our lines. Handle that class without gloves, and take their property for public use. As soon as the corn gets fit for forage get all the supplies you can from the rebels in Mississippi. It is time that they should begin to feel the presence of war on our side. Bolivar and the Hatchie River should be well defended, in order to secure our railroad communications.

See that all possible facilities are afforded for getting out cotton. It is deemed important to get as much as we can into market. I see it stated in the newspapers that Gen. Sherman has forbidden the payment of gold for cotton, while Gen. Butler advises the payment of gold, in order to induce planters to bring it to market. I have called the attention of the Secretary of War to this difference, and he directs me to say that the payment of gold should not be prohibited. Instruct Gen. Sherman accordingly.

H. W. HALLECK, Maj.-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. II, p. 150.

            2, Synopsis of Federal anti-guerrilla activity on the Hatchie River, Bolivar to Brownsville and the Somerville road

JACKSON, August 2, 1862.

Gen. U. S. GRANT:

I have swept both sides of the Hatchie from Bolivar to Brownsville, on the road to Somerville. The enemy fled precipitately and escaped capture. The force I have on the Hatchie, together with those you are sending and the three regiments here, exclusive of the Eleventh, secures things in these quarters for the present. I will send the Eleventh the first opportunity. I have some 300 negroes [sic] at work on the fortifications at Bolivar. I will probably return them on Monday. The 2,400 ammunition [sic] has not come.


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. II, pp. 150-151.

            2, "Union Meeting at Court Square."

Another Grand Turn Out.

The People for the Old Flag.

Last night at an early hour the citizens began to assemble at Court Square, and on they came by hundreds until the monument of Jackson was surrounded by one of the most respectable and most enthusiastic audiences we have seen in Memphis.

Mr. Nabers acted as Chairman, and the first speaker called out to address the meeting was Major Sharpe.

The Major was formerly Mayor of Columbus, Ky. And also a prisoner in this city, and could therefore testify from his own experience as to the value of good government, and to the despotic character of the rebellion. He is an educated man, a vigorous thinker, and a forcible speaker. The audience was well entertained by his remarks.

Major Fitch was next called for, but as he was not present, Capt. Gogswell took the stand and made one of his most felicitous off-hand addresses. The Captain made some happy hits, and whether earnest or humorous, he carried his hearers with him. Capt. Gogswell gave way to Major Willard of Major Gen. Wallace's staff, who held the assembly spell bound by his logic and eloquence for over half an hour.

Major Willard addressed himself not to the officers and soldiers, or Union citizens, but those before him who had been or still were sympathizers with the rebellion. He had done what he could to defeat Abraham Lincoln, but, the firing upon the national at Fort Sumter roused his patriotism and brought him with hundred[s] of thousands more to defend the Constitution and the Union. Of what rights had the South been deprived. Had she not enjoyed, would ask, much the larger share in the control of the nation during its entire history? And what right had been trespassed on, or trampled under foot that she should madly tear down this noble government. President Lincoln had treated the South with wonderful kindness and forbearance; he had stationed soldier to guard and protect the property of the citizens of the country through they passed. In one instance after this protection had been furnished a cowardly scoundrel, he returned the kindness by shooting a poor way-worn soldier. "When I heard it," said the Major, ["] I went back with some of our men and hung the villain up like a dog.["] (Served him right-served him right said some one near the stand.) While had an unbounded respect for women, yet on the southern women who insult the flag, and spout forth and flirt out their treason, and offer indignities to our soldiery, he was decidedly in favor of enforcing Picayune Butler's word-famed order. The South need not think that a few disasters would lead the nation to abandon the contest. If every army we have organized should be annihilated, the undying purpose of the masses will furnish a million more men to finish what has been begun. If in the future the conspiracy against the Constitution shall go on murdering our brave boys and committing outrages that makes one's blood run cold, and that appeal to Heaven for vengeance, then, that which we did not purpose [sic?] in the beginning we may all resolve to do, and in the name of the Almighty, under such a condition of things, we will strike for the utter extermination of slavery. We have given but a meager sketch of Major Willard's impressive speech. It told upon the audience and was listened to with marked attention, and as he left the platform cheer after cheer rent the air.

The magnificent brass band of the 6th Iowa regiment in attendance during the exercises, enlivened the occasion with some of their best music,

To the lively air of Yankee Doodle the meeting adjourned till Monday next.

Memphis Union Appeal, August 3, 1862.

            2, "Oh, for Shame, I hope that this eturnal [sic] harping about the Negro will stop." Letter of John A. Ritter, 49th Indiana Volunteers

August 2, 1862 from Cumberland Gap, Tenn.

Cumberland Gap, Ten.

Aug. 2, 1862

Dear Margarett [sic],

Yours of the 21 is Recd. and this is the third Letter that I have got from you this week. I am always anxious to get a letter from you. I always wish that they were longer and when it is long between letters I hunt up some old one, reread them but always when I make a move I burn or tare [sic] up all old letters so that if my trunk should fall in the hands of an enemy that they will not have the pleasure of reading my letters. I do not know how long I will be at the Gap but I expect for some time if we do all the worke [sic] that is laid out for us to do. It will be white frost before it is done. News is verry [sic] scarce at this time. We have a lot of prisners [sic] here. I often talk with them and am sorry for the poore [sic] deluded fellows. One of them told me that it was the opinion that nine out of every ten in the free states were abolishonist [sic] and that we look upon negros [sic] as our equils[sic], that they were allowed to eat at our tables, sleep in our beds, galant [sic] our Daughters etc. This he said had been taught him all his life and that he was honest in his opinions. Oh, for Shame, I hope that this eturnal [sic] harping about the Negro will stop. We have no stock in the negro[sic]. We have passed through Kentucky and have not [stolen ?] any of the counterbands [sic] and we have got thus fare in Tenessee [sic] on the same footing but if this war does not seace [sic] there will be rougher means used than has been. It makes me mad to detail my men to stand guard over rebbel [sic] property which is done daily and as long as traitors are protected and their property defended whilst the union men are unprotected Treasan [sic] is at a premium and the Shackels [sic] will soon fall off when this comes I pity the poore [sic] women and children. You may thank your maker that the war is not on our borders. Hard as your [____?] are you are in a good fix to what thousands are but I wish that you was better fixed than you are. It has been one of the objects of my life to make you happy and to fix so that our family would [be] comfortable but this wicked Rebelion [sic] has deprived us of may comforts of life that we might have injoy [sic] but with such a state of affairs as our once happy country was in but now bleeding at every pore. It was once thought that Kind [sic] treatment would win them back to aligance [sic] but it has failed and now there must be an other policy must be persued [sic]. I have no fault to find of out offices [sic] but when I see my men standing guard over Rebbel [sic] property and then on half rations or when it comes to buying from sesesesh[sic]. Of all the awful, onions two for 5 cts., Honey 50 cts. a [bb.?], corn[_____?] 10 to 25 cts. that any one man could eat at one meal, [bacon?], hams 25 cts. a[t] [lb.?]. Shall we stand these things, can we indure [sic] it? Those in orthority [sic] must begin to open their eyes. I would be glad if this thing was settled but it will have to be settled by the soward [sic] and by Hemp. It is better under this colougne [sic] water for a man to be sesesh [sic] than a union man. Here a union man is not protected only by the generosity of the soldiers whilst they are not allowed to tuch [sic] the property of the sesesh [sic] but those Dough face union men I have no faith in them. The most of the men are union whilst our forces are in their midst but when we pass them by they raise up in our rear, cut off our supplys [sic] like they have done or tryed to do in Kentucky. The notorious Morgan got the box that I sent to you. It is not much value to him but is only lent. I expect to collect it with Intrst. [sic] My parents have not yet been herd from. I expect that they have gone the same way.

Col. [McRed?] of Bloomington is here. I will try to get him to look after them. We have a Capt. Johnson that was at Lexington and got a suit of clothes of the same man. He may have charge of my pants. Liut [sic]. [sic] Charles has a pr. of pants that is with my pants, if they have not parten [sic] company. The boys are generaly [sic] well as for sorry dog pups. You guess well but I think in my present situation that it is not best at altims [sic] to give publisity [sic] to ones opinions. I will here say that there are some men went into the service that never intended to do any good when they left home. They play old soldier from the start. They get in to a Hospital and they stay their [sic] always behind the Reg[iment]. This Hospital caveralry [sic] are a great drawback to the service and there are many more of them than one would supose. I was at Barbersville[3] after some of our men that was [sic] sick at that place. I marched them out into an old Orchard, formed them up in two Ranks and picked out such as I thought was well. And out of this number I selected 60. The Col. sent for every one of them, some that pretended to be sick, that they could not walk half mile but they all had to come. One of them tied to the end of the wagon for mile or so but when he found out that the thing was no go [sic] he agreed if they would let him loose that he would go to Camp which he did and every one of them were as well as the men in camp except that they had been laying around taking no exercise. When I came back and made my report to the Col. he sayed [sic] that if he [knew?] what one were able to come he would bring them. Pulled out the list of their names that I had taken. He then sent a Liut [sic]. [sic] imedialy [sic] after them with orders to bring all on my list.

As usual I have finished the amount of paper usualy [sic] appropriate for a letter but am not yet done. This is Sunday the 3rd of August. It is a beautiful day. All things is [sic] quiet. The sun shines will all its lovelyness. [sic] There has been but few army teams a stir to day. It looks more like Sunday than usual. There is little reguard [sic] paid to the Sabath [sic] in the army. Gen. Carter is an exception to the general rule of army offices. I think he is a christian [sic]. [sic] When he does any thing on the Sabath [sic] it is a necesity [sic] with him. I am lonsome. [sic] I have gone through the regular [routine?] of duty of the duty assigned to Sunday morning, that is inspection of the Armes [sic], Amunition [sic], Clothing of the men. I have not got any of my company in the hospital that is with me. Some are back at Lexington. All that is here is up on foot. There is 3 or 4 that is a little on the puny order. James Denny, John Pennick, Robert Knight, and Johnithan Clark. I expect a lot of the boys up from Lexington soon with Capt. Johnson. We have some their that might have come up before this if they had wanted to but those that are not able for duty we do not want them to come till they are well. We have a deserter just in from the sesesh [sic] Army. He says that they have about 4 Regiments of Caveralry [sic] at Knoxville that was about ready to start out as Garillars [sic]. The people may look out for Kentucky. He says that they have nothing to eat but salt meat and Bread that he has not see any Coffee since he has been in the service. He says that he was prest [sic] into the service in Louisana [sic] with some 60 others at New Orleans that they were sent to a camp and put under guard and was divided out in smapp [sic] [small] partys [sic], put in to different Regiments, that he was sent to Knoxville from where he made his escape. I have not seen the man. They say that he is verry [sic] inteligent [sic]. An other fujative [sic] has just come in from Georgia. He says that the crops are verry [sic] short in these states on the southern coast and that it will be with great difficulty that they can subsist their Army. We have a lot of sesesh [sic] prisners [sic] here. I have got quite intimate with several of them. I often talk with them and get their ideas but the most inteligent [sic] of them are verry [sic] Ignorant of the [resorses?] of the Free States. I learn that recruiting is going on verry [sic] fast in our state, that the new [_____?] is fast filling up. I am affraid [sic] that Theophilis will want to volunteer but he is to [sic] young but if he should take a notion to go wheather [sic] or not I would rather you would send him to me yet I may not stay in present situation. This depends on circomstances[sic]. These circomstances [sic] are about this. If Col. John W. Ray comes back & takes command of the 49th I expect that there will be at least one less Capt. in it. I hope and trust for the good of the men & my bleeding Country that he may not come back. If I should leave the 49th I am willing to serve in some other. I love home, I love my family, I would like to be with you but I Know with the state of things now existing that I could not stay at home satisfied. I want you to sum up all your patriotism. I know it is hard for you to be left as you are but your country demands it at your hands. I am well and in fine spirits. We have had to subsist on government suplys [sic] for some time, hard Bread, bacon, dryed [sic] beans, sugar, Coffee, Rice, and mixt [sic] vegetables. We have just bought a bucket of poteates [sic] and a bucket of Beans and we got today two sugar cured hams. If we could get such vegetables we would live better than we do at times. If we could get transportation we would be glad to have butter and such things from home as could not be had in this country. All that we get of the government we get at a reasonable price. It is furnished at the cost to the government and we could not ask anything. If we Still [sic] reamin [sic] her [sic] I do not see how this army can subsist next winter. It is a verry [sic] bad [_____?] at best but when the winter weather sets in the roads is almost impasable [sic]. The government ought to take negroids [sic] enough to make a good road and put them to work on it but there will be a detachment of soldiers to do it if done at all. We are still at work making fortifications. I shall learn something about the business as I am observing things verry [sic] closely as they progress. The man in charge of the works aims to work the same men that are at work at present till the works are completed. I have been a part of two day writing this letter and as I have taken a long nap to day between times Knowing that it cannot go off till tomorrow this has been truly a scrap letter and I have not taken the time to read. I may have made several repepetition [sic]. If I had an opportunity I would get my Teeth fixed. The loss of my front teeth affects my voice. Tom and John are well. John is too young to stand the hardships of a soldier like older ones. I often favor him but if he was put through like some he would see a hard time. In fact, I favor all of my men and they all Know it and speak of it. I Know that they would not be willing for me to leave them under any circomstances [sic]. It is reported that our men have had a skirmish with the enemy near Taswell [sic] to day and that we have captured 300 prisners. [sic] I do not believe this to be true though we sent over in that direction about 4000 Soldiers yestday [sic] and if they came a cross any enemy they would have had a brush. It is a great place in camp to get news and if one would believe half he herd [sic] he would always be taking trouble or Joy to be [disappointed?] when he gets the facts. Both of our surgeons have turned their Resignations.

J. A. Ritter

Ritter Correspondence

            2, "This country is lined with bands of roving guerrillas and if a soldier pokes his head outside of the guards he is almost sure to be shot at if not killed." A. A. Harrison's letter home from Manchester


Coffee County

Tenn. August 2nd

Dear wife,

I want you to get along the best you can where you are until I can get home again and be content as you can. And if you should go anywhere else write and let me know immediately but you don't know how it would grieve me to think you would go any place else after you promised me to stay where you was. Take good care of the children and kiss them all for me. I would be glad to see you all again for it appears like it has been 3 months since I left home. So nothing more at present but remaining your affectionate husband until death.

A. A. Harrison



Coffee County

August 2nd, 1862

Dear Wife,

I take my pen in hand to write to you once more. I am well at present and hope these few lines may find you & the children and all the of the folks well. The boys from Hardin are all well but Jo & Patterson. They were right puny when I seen them last. They are at Tullahoma, 12 miles from here. We left them 10 days ago and came to this place and I have not seen Jo nor Patterson since. They were both going about they have got their discharge and they were sent on to Gen. Buell for his signature and as soon as they get back Jo & Hugh will be at home. This place and Tullahoma is on high dry hills and as cool and healthy as any part of Hardin and there is plenty of the best kind of spring water here. I wrote a letter while I was a Nashville that I was cut off from the regiment by the Rebels at Murfreesboro. I was at Nashville [sic] days when Jim Nelson started to Murfreesboro with his Brigade. I slipped on the train with them and came out to Murfreesboro and from there I rode part of the way in a country wagon and I walked the balance of way. I saw two or three bands of guerrillas on the way but I managed to dodge them and got to camp safe. I tell you I have been in dangerous places before but I never want to take such a trip as that anymore. This country is lined with bands of roving guerrillas and if a soldier pokes his head outside of the guards he is almost sure to be shot at if not killed. Nearly all of our regiment has been captured except the three companies here. Our pickets were fired on last Sunday and two men killed and fifteen taken prisoners all belonging to the 7th Penn Cavalry. I tell you our pickets don't sleep much on duty here. I lost my office when I came back but I am company quartermaster now which is a much easier place and I get the same pay as in the other. It is the next highest office in company to Orderly Sergeant. I would have written sooner but we have had no chance to send any letters since we have been here until now. And we have only got one mail since we have been here. I saw Wm. Smit as I came out from Nashville. He was at Murfreesboro then but he is at Nashville now. He is getting well and will be at home soon. From what we can hear our men are rather getting the worst of it here lately and I don't know how the war will terminate but I think peace will be made some way in a few months and I hope it may. We have not been paid off yet. It has been rather to [sic] dangerous for a paymaster to venture out here. But the officers say he will be here in a few days now. I will send some money home if I can find a safe way to send it as there's not much safety in anything here now. This is the hardest place to buy anything I have ever found. Tobacco sells for $2.00 per lb. Whiskey 75 cts. to $1.00 per pint. Boarding $1.00 per meal and other things in proportion. And you cannot get a bill broken unless you take scrip in change and hardly then. There is still some talk of taking us back to Kentucky yet but I reckon there is not much hope of that. I would like to be there next Monday if I could. Nick Gabon has not got back yet and I reckon never will. He took about $3.00 of the boys [sic] money with him when he left to take home for them and kept it all. So nothing more at present but remaining your affectionate husband until death.

A. A. Harrison

Aug 2nd, 8 o'clock P.M.

Since writing the above we have moved back to Tullahoma. I have just seen Jo and talked with him. He looks better than he did some time ago but he will come home as soon as his papers comes [sic] back. I hear the Cesh [sic] in Ky. are going to raise and kill the Union men next Monday. But I hope it is all a mistake. Write as soon as the election is over and let me hear all about it.

A. A. Harrison

I have seen some papers here lately which state that Morgan is tearing up everything in Ky and I heard the other day that there was a band of 200 guerrillas at Garnetteville (?). I am afraid you are in danger there in Hardin and I have not heard a word from you since I left home. I watch for the mail every time we get mail for a letter but no letter as yet. I want to know what is the matter all the other boys have got letters since I came back but me. If you have not written yet write as soon as you get this and write often as you can and tell Father and Mother and all of the children to write and maybe I will get some of them at least. I will write again in a few days if nothing happens to prevent.

A. A. Harrison

Absolom A. Harrison Correspondence

            2, Aid requested for families of Tennessee volunteers

[For the Union.]

Help for the Families of Tennessee Union Volunteers.

Camp Andrew Johnson, 1st Reg. Mtd. Tenn. Vols., Nashville, Aug. 1, 1862.

Friend Mercer:--Your editorial in this morning's issue, in relation to the necessity of raising a fund for the benefit of the Tennessee volunteers, is a very good thing, and I hope your suggestions in relation to it will be carried out, and hope that you will keep it before the people; for it is a notorious fact that rebel wives and families, whose husbands are in the rebel service endeavoring the destroy the Government and ruin the State, are drawing their weekly stipend when the loyal citizen and soldier who is ready and fighting for the maintenance of the Union and his State, is left to want. You have no idea of the suffering the men of this regiment have undergone; the formation of it has been a hard one. Many of our men were laborers in the city, renting their homes of secessionists, and no sooner would the man whose loyal and patriotic feelings would induce him to enlist, than his family and chattles were turned out of doors and all help cut off; but by heavy exertions and his Excellency, the Governor, matters were made to turn more favorable to us. The regiment has been a long while in the service, and amidst the privations the men have done their duty faithfully. When Maj. Theneck and myself were authorized to raise the regiment, we were flattered by a committee of citizens that a snug little sum of money would be raised for the benefit of the families of the 1st Tennessee, and under these inducements we encouraged men to enlist. But I am sorry to say that seventy-five dollars is all the aid this regiment has received from such sources, which will I hope have a tendency to crush out the rumor afloat that this regiment has received large amounts of moneys. Many of the men have large families and their costs have now been running on for four months and over, and I sincerely hope that the ball you have now started will continue rolling and gather moss [sic] as it goes, for I know and can speak for the men of this regiment and their families, that you will receive their thanks and gratitude, and let the hour of peril come when it will, with our commander and the gallant souls in the regiment, you will find every man at the work, and their motto: "The 1st Tennessee Guard never surrenders!"

Yours, Respectfully,

F. T. Foster, Lt. Col. 1st Tenn. Vols.

Nashville Daily Union, August 2, 1862.

            2, An Account of Guerrilla Attacks in Rhea County in July 1862


Headquarters 7th Tenn. Regt.

Fort Clift[4], Scott County, July 28, 1862

Lt. Col. Hooland:

Dear Sir: Agreeable to your request, I hereby make a statement of three several attacks made upon me and my house. I have been residing for the last two and a half years in Rhea county, Tennessee, on the Stock road, leading from Kentucky to the Tennessee River, my native state being New York, or the City of New York being my residence for twenty years previous to my coming to Tennessee.

I was at my residence on the night of the 13th inst. when I was attacked by thirteen rebels who shot at me three times, and hit me in the left arm with three balls. I then fired upon then with my Enfield and ran them off. The following day nearly 100 of them came to my house and commenced in indiscriminate plunder of house and store, taking from $300 to $400 worth of property from me, I being absent. I was again attacked the following Friday [18th] by eighteen of the rebels at my own house; they were within twenty steps of the door when I discovered them. My wife rushed out and pulled the door too [sic] after her and was then ordered to open the door or they would shoot her.  I seized my gun and rushed to the door and threw it open, when one of them fired at me at a distance not exceeding twelve feet, and I delivered my fire upon them, there being three of them in the yard. I then drew my Navy running them all out of the yard, they firing upon me four or five times while I stood at the gate. I now had time to make good my retreat to the upper part of the house, where I had a fine opportunity to fire upon them and be covered myself. They retired, too, as they supposed, a safe distance where the seemed disposed to remain like a pack of hungry wolves, but a few discharges from my Enfield at any that showed themselves persuaded them to leave for parts unknown. I received one shot in the left breast, one it the right side, one grazing the right arm and one in the right foot. My wife received one shot in the left hip, which glanced upon her hoop skirt, and did but little damage; and one also struck her in the right arm, but did little damage.  I remained in the house and maintained a constant watch until night when I made my escape and made my way to this camp. My family are now fugitives from home, and my property will all be destroyed. They burst a cap at my wife on the 14th, when at their plunder, and struck her on her left breast with the breach of a gun and burst at one also at one of the girls living in my family on the day of the last attack. The rebels have reported three dead, and I am credibly informed three are wounded. Respectfully submitted,

J. J. Palmer.

Louisville Daily Journal, August 2, 1862.

            2-3, Forced march by Federals from Murfreesborough to Tullahoma

TULLAHOMA, August 3, 1862.

Gen. D. C. BUELL:

Arrived here after a march of thirty-six hours from Murfreesborough. Enemy are 13 miles hence, with two roads to retreat on, one directly across the mountain, the other on Sparta [sic]. That to Sparta is by this time blocked up by Gen. Johnson. The railroad wants but two days labor to put in complete order.

I march to-morrow in pursuit and will not stop till I drive the enemy across the mountain. I marched by way of Woodbury; Johnson by way of Liberty.

NELSON, Maj.-Gen.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 16, pt. II, p. 255.

            2-4, Operations at Cumberland Gap.

Report of Col. John F. De Courcy, Sixteenth Ohio Infantry, commanding brigade.

TAZEWELL, EAST TENN., August 4, 1862.

CAPTAIN: I have to report, for the information of the general commanding, that on my arrival at this point on the evening of the 2d instant I found the enemy's pickets posted on the hills in front of the town. They, however, retired on the approach of the Sixteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers, and this corps took up that ground for the night. I have ever since occupied a very extended line of pickets on that ground. The foraging has thus far proceeded satisfactorily. Hay, horses, cattle, and sheep were brought in yesterday. No corn has been found as yet. Yesterday [3d] I made a reconnaissance toward Big Springs. The enemy had there about 100 cavalry, and they held their ground for about an hour and did not leave until I opened fire on them with a 10-pounder. This day [4th] I proceed with the Sixteenth Regiment and two guns to Little Sycamore, via Big Springs, where I shall leave a part of the Forty-second Regiment to protect my line of retreat in case of disaster. From Little Sycamore I shall move toward Big Sycamore, and return to Tazewell from that point without passing through Big Springs. This expedition is intended to cover a large train which proceeds from here direct to Big Sycamore. I have not sufficient strength to make detachments without at the same time leaving altogether open the position in rear of this town. But by thus calling the enemy's attention toward Little Sycamore I hope to make them uneasy about their Morristown line of road. Two of the enemy's spies have been arrested whilst in the act of giving their cavalry information of the position of our infantry. It would serve as a good example if these men were punished according to the laws. If an order be sent me to that effect, I will have them publicly shot.

I have the honor to be, yours, respectfully,

JOHN DE COURCY, Col., Commanding Twenty-sixth Brigade.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 52, pt. I, pp. 42-43.

            2-5, Scouts from Memphis toward Raleigh, on Wolf River, down Hernando road to Nonconah [sic], and west of Horn Lake road

SPECIAL ORDERS, No. 156. HDQRS., Memphis, Tenn., August 1, 1862.

I. Gen. Morgan L. Smith will send an expedition for three days, composed of one regiment of infantry, a section of artillery, and the available men of the Fourth Illinois Cavalry, to Raleigh, on the Wolf River. The infantry will scout the country in the neighborhood of Raleigh, destroying or capturing all enemies in arms, and seizing all arms, ammunition, or contraband property found in unsafe hands. The cavalry will scout well forward and to the west, marching over the Randolph road. The cavalry should not operate on the main road, but by cross-roads and by-paths.

II. Gen. Hurlbut will in like manner send ten regiments of infantry, one section of artillery, and the available force of the Fifth Ohio Cavalry down the Hernando road to Nonconah [sic], the infantry to scout up and down the creek, the cavalry to scout well beyond the Nonconah [sic], sweeping around by the west to the Horn Lake road; the expedition to remain out three days.

The commanding officer of the Sixth Illinois Cavalry will report to Gen. Smith, to do picket duty in front of his brigade during the absence of the Fourth Illinois, and the Eleventh Illinois to Gen. Hurlbut, to picket in front of his division till the return of the Fifth Ohio.

By order of Maj. Gen. W. T. Sherman:

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 17, pt. II, pp. 149-150.

            2-5, Federal foraging expedition, Cumberland Gap [See August 2-6, 1862, Operations about and against Cumberland Gap, below]

            2-5, Confederate conscript sweep in Dyer, Lauderdale and Hickman Counties [see August 7, 1862, Skirmish at Wood Springs near Dyersburg, below]

            2-6, Operations against and about Cumberland Gap and Skirmish (6th) near Tazewell, Tenn.[5]

AUGUST 2-6, 1862.-Operations at Cumberland Gap and skirmish (6th) near Tazewell, Tenn.

Report of Brig. Gen. George W. Morgan, U. S. Army.

CUMBERLAND GAP, August 7, 1862.

COL.: To obtain forage and feel and learn the strength of the enemy, De Courcy was ordered to Tazewell on the 2d instant. He secured 200 wagon loads of forage, all of which safely arrived on the 5th. Some slight picket skirmishing took place, in which we had 2 men wounded, while the enemy had 1 killed and several wounded.

Early in the morning of the 6th instant, not wishing to bring on a general action, I ordered Col. De Courcy to return to this post, but he was attacked at daybreak on that day. Considering enemy's forces the attack was feeble. Two of his regiments surrounded two companies of the Sixteenth Ohio, detached to protect a section of artillery. The enemy's movement was well executed, and had it not been for the coolness and gallantry of Lieut. Anderson we would have lost two pieces of artillery. Although surrounded by a vastly superior force, the two infantry companies, under command of Capt.'s Edgar and Taneyhill, fought heroically, and three-fourths of them succeeded in cutting their way through to their regiments. But we fear that Capt. Edgar, an officer of great merit, was killed, and Capt. Taneyhill taken prisoner. There were several instances of distinguished conduct both on the part of officers and soldiers. A soldier of the Twenty-second Kentucky was shot through the neck and fell. His gun dropped from his hands; his foe contrived to advance upon him, when the wounded hero grasped his gun, rose to his feet and shot the rebel soldier dead when within five paces of him, when he again fell weltering in his blood. Two soldiers of the Sixteenth Ohio had lost their way and were going toward the enemy, when Lieut.-Col. Gordon, of the Eleventh Tennessee, hailed them, demanding their regiment. With coolness and courage they required him to declare his rank and regiment and took him prisoner. Resuming their march by a circuitous route they rejoined their commands. Gordon speaks highly of their courage and courteous treatment. At 3.30 p. m. a courier arrived from Col. De Courcy and asked for aid. Leaving three regiments to guard the Gap I marched with my remaining force to his assistance, but when within 2 miles of Tazewell I met him on his return. The enemy left the field at 5 o'clock and maintained his position until 7 o'clock p. m. The enemy's loss is believed to be considerable. I did not pursue, lest with a superior force, he should gain my rear.


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 16, pt. I, pp. 835-836.

Reports of Col. John F. De Courcy, Sixteenth Ohio Infantry, commanding brigade.

TAZEWELL, EAST TENN., August 4, 1862.

CAPTAIN: I have to report, for the information of the general commanding, that on my arrival at this point on the evening of the 2d instant I found the enemy's pickets posted on the hills in front of the town. They, however, retired on the approach of the Sixteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers, and this corps took up that ground for the night. I have ever since occupied a very extended line of pickets on that ground. The foraging has thus far proceeded satisfactorily. Hay, horses, cattle, and sheep were brought in yesterday. No corn has been found as yet. Yesterday I made a reconnaissance toward Big Springs. The enemy had there about 100 cavalry, and they held their ground for about an hour and did not leave until I opened fire on them with a 10-pounder, This day I proceed with the Sixteenth Regiment and two guns to Little Sycamore, via Big Springs, where I shall leave a part of the Forty-second Regiment to protect my line of retreat in case of disaster. From Little Sycamore I shall move toward Big Sycamore, and return to Tazewell from that point without passing through Big Springs. This expedition is intended to cover a large train which proceeds from here direct to Big Sycamore. I have not sufficient strength to make detachments without at the same time leaving altogether open the position in rear of this town. But by thus calling the enemy's attention toward Little Sycamore I hope to make them uneasy about their Morristown line of road. Two of the enemy's spies have been arrested whilst in the act of giving their cavalry information of the position of our infantry. It would serve as a good example if these men were punished according to the laws. If an order be sent me to that effect, I will have them publicly shot.

I have the honor to be, yours, respectfully,

JOHN DE COURCY, Col., Commanding Twenty-sixth Brigade.


HEADQUARTERS TWENTY-SIXTH BRIGADE, Cumberland Gap, August 7, 1862.

CAPTAIN: In continuation of the dally report which Gen. Morgan directed me to send in of the foraging expedition which I was ordered to make in the vicinity of Tazewell, l have the honor to state as follows:

About 10.45 a. m. yesterday the enemy made a sudden attack in great force on the Sixteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers on the entire length of the line of advanced posts furnished by that corps. The attacking force consisted of at least three infantry regiments, with some artillery, supported by other regiments and more artillery. The enemy had been secreted during the previous night in the dense woods in front and on the flanks of the advanced posts and their pickets. The manner of the attack showed evidently that the intention was to cut off the advanced gun. In this the enemy would have succeeded but for the courageous coolness of the men serving the gun, and the companies placed there to protect it. So well did these companies comport themselves that he gun was enabled to fire one round at the enemy at a distance not greater than seventy-five yards. The gun was then limbered up and retired in good order (Major Kershner's horse was shot during this part of the affair), but the companies protecting the retreat of the gun were themselves surrounded by two regiments and completely cut off. Here began a most desperate combat betwixt the companies of the Sixteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers and the enemy's two regiments. Finally more than four-fifths of the officers and privates of the two companies cut their way through and rejoined later in the day their regiment, in rear of Tazewell.

Whilst these brilliant deeds were being performed on the right as severe an engagement was taking place on the left. There Major Kershner (who was in command of the Sixteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers) had taken position with three companies on a high knoll commanding the roads by which the enemy was advancing. The conduct of these companies and their management by Major Kershner was excellent. For one hour and a half they held two regiments at bay, and compelled one of these regiments to fall back to reform; but the companies having exhausted all their ammunition, were finally ordered to fall back in skirmishing order. I arrived near the scene of action about 11 o'clock. It was at once apparent that the position in front of Tazewell was not any longer tenable. I immediately ordered the Fourteenth Regiment Kentucky Volunteers to form in line right and left of the road, placing at the same time two guns near the center to cover the retreat of the Sixteenth Regiment Ohio Volunteers. As soon as the latter had reached this line I ordered the guns to retire, and shortly after the Fourteenth Regiment Kentucky Volunteers followed and took up position on the heights in rear of Tazewell, where the remainder of the brigade, with the artillery, were posted. Having received information that the enemy had massed troops on the Knoxville road with the design of getting in rear of my right, I gave up all idea of advancing, and determined to hold these heights as long as my line of communication with Cumberland Gap was not endangered. This was accordingly done, and the First Wisconsin Battery, ably commanded by the gallant Lieut. Anderson, with a well-directed fire, first stopped the enemy's advance, and finally compelled him to retreat over the hills and out of sight. The enemy's artillery fire was good, both as to range and direction, and the caliber of their guns was larger than ours. About the time the enemy began to retire almost all stragglers had rejoined, and all stores and wagons had been sent well to the rear. The artillery ammunition being nearly all expended, and the men much exhausted from want of food, having lost their rations during the action, and their physical powers having been taxed to the utmost during the hottest part of the day, I resolved to retire slowly. The movement began about 7 p. m.; was effected in excellent order, and in a direction through the woods which completely concealed it from the observation of the enemy's scouts. Several hours previous I had again received information from loyal citizens and colored people that several regiments of the enemy were in rear of my right flank, which would have rendered this movement imperative had even the above reason not compelled it. I have called upon officers commanding regiments to make a detailed report of the doings and conduct of their respective commands, and copies of these reports will be forwarded to you without delay. A return of killed, wounded, and missing will be furnished you as soon as possible. Amongst the missing the name of Capt. Edgar, Sixteenth Regiment, will appear. This able, zealous, and gallant officer was seen to fall when his company was breaking through the enemy's regiments. I have the honor to be, sir, yours, respectfully,

JOHN DE COURCY, Col., Commanding Twenty-sixth Brigade.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 52, pt. I, pp. 42-44.


Huntsville, August 15, 1862.

Gen. NELSON, McMinnville:

Rebel accounts of affair at Tazewell are false. The facts are as follows: Morgan send De Courcy's brigade to Tazewell to reconnoiter and get forage; they procured 200 loads, and had a slight skirmish on 5th; on morning of 6th, as he was returning, De Courcy was attacked, not vigorously, considering vastly superior force of enemy. Our object was accomplished and the affair a success. We had but one brigade and a section of artillery. Loss not serious. Nothing has occurred there since. It is of highest importance for you to verify the report of Bragg's movement to Richmond; spare no labor, means, or money to do so. Send Gen. Jackson at once to report to Gen. Boyle in Kentucky to command a light brigade for active operations.


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 16, pt. II, p. 341.


Entries from the diary of William E. Sloan, member of the 5th Regiment of Tennessee Cavalry [C. S. A.][6]

Aug. 6.-The Tazewell battle[7] took place today. Brothers Fielding and Flavel came to our camp early this morning, and I got Flavel to loan me his horse and take my place a baggage guard, and I went with Fielding to join the cavalry, which we found near Tazewell on the left of the line of battle. The enemy occupied Tazewell, and a heavy artillery fire was kept up on both sides. The cavalry was not engaged during the day, and the infantry lines did not join in hard battle until toward evening. Our 3d Tenn. Regiment did the principal fighting, and the enemy was driven from the field at nightfall, but still occupied the town, and our infantry did not try to follow them in the dark.

Aug. 7.-

Brother Fielding and I mounted our horses this morning before day-break and started off alone to reconnoiter.

Passing our picket line we cautiously rode toward Tazewell, expecting to find the enemy's pickets near the edge of town. Finding no resistance we entered the town just after day-break, and learned that the last of the enemy left town before mid-night. We were the first rebels to enter the town, in fact the first to find out that the enemy was not still occupying the town.[8] We took breakfast with a family of Southern ladies in town, and some of the young ladies picketed the streets while we ate breakfast, lest the yankee [sic] cavalry should charge and capture us. We then mounted and started back to report our discoveries to the cavalry colonel, and before we got out of town a very amusing circumstance occurred. We discovered three infantry soldiers approaching town in a rather straggling manner, and on seeing us they took to their heels as fast as they could run, thinking that we were the advance of a column of Yankee cavalry

We charged them, as a joke, and soon came up with them. They are [sic] very much relieved in mind on discovering that we were friends but evidently did not relish the joke as well as we did....

Diary of William E. Sloan, August 6-7, 1862.


The Battle at Tazewell, East Tennessee – FurtHer particulars.

From the Knoxville Register of the 8th we get the following particulars in regard to the battle in Claiborne county, Tenn., near Tazewell:

It commenced early on Wednesday morning, and lasted several hours resulting in the defeat of the enemy who are rapidly retreating towards Cumberland Gap. Heavy artillery firing on both sides continued from eight till ten o'clock. The enemy had three brigades engaged in the fight, besides artillery, supposed to be their whole effective force at Cumberland Gap.

During the fight the 3d Tennessee regiment, under the lead of the gallant Vaughn, captured a battery of fouir guns, after being twice repulsed. The loss in Col. Vaughn's regiment in killed and wouonded was 109. The enemy's loss was much heavier, but has not been ascertained – the killed and wouonded strewing the ground in every direction. It is believed that our full force in that region was engaged and that Barton's brigade began it. Since writing the foregoing we have been permitted to copy the following dispatch to these headquarters from Brig. Gen. Stevenson, commanding the Division:

Near Tazewell, near 6 o'clock p.m. Major H. L. Clay, A.A.G.:

I shall not need the services of Gen. Leadbetter. After a gallant engagement of four hours, we have routed the enemy, and they are in full retreat to their strongholds.

C.L. Stevenson, Brig. General.

In commenting on the above news the Register says:

The tidings of our victory in Claiborne county over the mongrel forces of the Federal General Morgan are cheering indications that military affairs in this department have at least assumed an activity that will be apt to satisfy the most doubtful. If the whole of Morgan's forces are not bagged, and Cumberland Gap recaptured, the result of Wednesday's battle will at least confine them to the fortifications of the Gap and prevent them from foraging on our people. We have strong hopes that no exertions will now be relaxed until the last prowlers ceases to "pollute the soil of East Tennessee with his footsteps."

Charleston Mercury, August 11, 1862.[9]




            2, Civilians harassed by Colonel Robert Galbraith's First Middle Tennessee [U. S.] cavalry in Middle Tennessee


Capt. W. C. RUSSELL, Assistant Adjutant-Gen.:

Scouting parties are sent out every day from this command….The Tennessee cavalry of Col. Galbraith is giving me excessive trouble and worrying and plundering through he country whenever they go out. They are under no control or discipline, as far as I can learn. Several instances have come to my hearing of their insulting unprotected females. I could not learn the names of the guilty parties….

Respectfully, yours,

W. C. WHITAKER, Brig. Gen., Cmdg. 1st Div., Reserve Corps, Army of the Cumberland.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 52, pt. I, p. 428

            ca. 2, Skirmish with guerrillas, Obion Middle Fork [See August 3, 1863, "Skirmish near Denmark" below]

            2-7, Scout from the LaGrange to Hardin County[10]

No circumstantial reports filed.


Lagrange, Tenn. August 9 [1863]

Colonel Hurst:

I beg leave to make the following report of a scout of which I had command by order of Col. Hatch:

On the 2d inst. Col. Hatch ordered me, with sixteen men, to take a dispatch to Gen. Dodge, at Corinth. Leaving Col. Hatch at Lexington, I started to Corinth, and on the morning of the 3rd, I met the 1st Alabama (Federal) cavalry, on the waters of White Oak creek[11], when the Major commanding requested me to let him send the message to Gen. Dodge, and that I would go with him as a guide: to which I assented, being well acquainted with that portion of country. We then proceeded in the direction of Swallow Bluff, on the Tennessee river, meeting with no opposition. At Swallow Bluff we separated, the Alabama cavalry moving up the river. After we parted, I had a fight with some of Col. Biffles' men across the river, but do not know the amount of damage done. We saw some of the rebs [sic] fall from their horses, three, if no more, but do not know whether they were shot dead or not. The rebs [sic] soon left the banks, fled incontinently. I then turned northwest, and after marching about ten miles I met a squad of rebels and exchanged several shots with them, when, as usual, the rebels fled. We received no damage, and we presumed that we had done them but little. I then continued my course about four miles and bivouacked for the night. On the morning of the 4th we mounted, and scouted the country in all directions until evening, when I started for Smith's Mill, on White Oak creek, where we spent the night. On the morning of the 5th we again mounted and went about seven miles in a northwestern direction, when we met a portion of Capt. Stinnett's guerrillas and had a right sharp fight, capturing his first lieutenant; first sergeant and fifteen men. We had the fight on the north fork of White Oak creek, about eight miles southeast of Jack's creek.[12] I then concluded to make my way back to Lagrange, which I did, arriving in camp the 7th with my seventeen prisoners, neither myself or [sic] any of my little squad having received a scratch.

I respectfully submit the above report, and also the seventeen "greybacks,"[13] to your paternal care [sic].


Wm. J. Smith, 1st Lieut. Co. C. Commanding Squad.

Memphis Bulletin, August 25, 1863.




            2, Skirmish at Morristown [see August 1-5, 1864, Scout from Strawberry Plains to Greeneville above]

No circumstantial reports filed.

            2, Scout in Athens environs

LOUDON, August 2, 1864--7.55 a. m.

Capt. W. P. AMMEN, Assistant Adjutant-Gen.:

I this moment received the following dispatch:

I sent 150 men and one piece of artillery.

M. B. EWING, Cmdg. Charleston.

LOUDON, August 2, 1864.

Capt. W. P. AMMEN:

I have received the following message from Athens, 2d:


There are reported to be three companies of rebels within three or four miles of here. Send help at once; nearly all my men are out on a scout. The enemy is coming in the direction of Madisonville.


I have ninety men on scout at Athens now. Can you send a force to Athens by railroads? I can't spare the men. No train here to send them on.

M. L. PATTERSON, Lieut.-Col., Cmdg.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 39, pt. II, p. 218.

            2, "Meeting in Sevier County."

At a recent Union meeting I Sevierville the following resolutions were adopted. The meeting was large, enthusiastic, and harmonious, and was addressed by Colonels Butler and Houk. There is no mistake as to the sentiment of the people. Three are a few leading men who are copperheads, because they either own a negro [sic] or are related to some one who does, but there are none among the real voters of the county. They are all right, and express whenever called upon, sentiments similar to those expressed in Sevier county:

Resolved. That we are for a vigorous prosecution of the war, and are not willing for any compromise until every armed traitor submits to the laws of the land.

Resolved. That we heartily endorse the administration of Abraham Lincoln in his efforts to suppress the rebellion, and we hereby pledge ourselves to render him every assistance in our power to carry on the glorious work.

Resolved. That the nomination of Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson at the Baltimore Convention, meets our approbation, and we hereby ratify the same and will give them our hearty and undivied [sic] support.

Resolved, that the doctrines embodied in the platform adopted by the Baltimore Convention are the only safe one for all truly loyal men and endorse, and we will look upon all men who oppose the principles enumerated in said platform with suspicion, and we regard any opposition to the election of Abraham Lincoln as giving aid and comfort to Jeff Davis and the rebellion.

Resolved that it is necessary for this Congressional District to have an elector, and will probably be impracticable to hold a convention for that purpose, we hereby express our preference for Col. R. R. Butler of Johnson county, for that position, and hereby nominate him for the same.

Resolved, That W. G. Brownlow, of Knoxville, is our first choice for Governor.

Resolved, That the proceedings of this meeting be published in the Knoxville Whig and Rebel Venillator [sic], and Nashville Times.

G.G. Sims, President

Wilson Johnston, Secretary.

Nashville Daily Times and True Union, August 2, 1864.

            2, "…taint no use to try to fight the whisky they keep here."

A captain arrested yesterday by the guard for drunkenness, when carried before Captain Sheridan, remarked that he had been at the front three years, knew a little about the fighting business, but he must acknowledge that he got somewhat confused by the sudden transformation from the field of battle to a city full of temptation. "By golly, just send me back again; taint no use to try to fight the whisky they keep here."

Nashville Daily Press, August 3, 1864.





[1] During the Mexican-American War, Brigadier General Gideon Pillow ordered an earthen fortification built at the Mexican town of Camargo. It was constructed so that it faced U.S. forces and not the Mexican army, that is, completely backwards. The incident followed Pillow, giving him a warranted reputation for incompetence.

[2] As cited in PQCW. See also: Boston Daily Advertiser, June 8, 1861; Daily Cleveland Herald, June 5, 1861.

[3] Barboursville, Kentucky.

[4] Not recognized in the OR.

[5] There were a number of combat operations at or near Tazewell during the Civil War: Affair, July 22, 1862; Scout, August 3-6, 1864, Skirmishes, July 26, 1862, August 6, 1862, September 5, 1863; January 19, 24, 1864, and March 5, 1865. See: OR General Index, Taylor-Teller, p. 945.

[6] Sloan was earlier a member of the 3d Regiment of Tennessee Infantry and 2nd Regiment of Tennessee Cavalry.

[7] The Federal commander refers to this combat event as a skirmish.

[8] Did he mention that the enemy was no longer occupying Tazewell?

[9] See also: The Wisconsin State Register (Portage, WI), Augus t 16, 1862, as cited in GALE GROUP.

[10] Reference to this event is found neither in the OR nor Dyer's Battle Index for Tennessee.

[11] A tributary of the Tennessee River, in Hardin County.

[12] In Chester County.

[13] This term seems to have been used by Federal troops as a counter to the Confederate use of the term "blue bellies."


James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214


(615)-532-1549  FAX


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