Monday, April 4, 2016

Notes from Civil War Tennessee, April 3, 1862-1864

Notes from Civil War Tennessee,

April 3, 1862-1864





          3, Skirmish near Monterey

APRIL 3, 1862.-Skirmish near Monterey, Tenn.


No. 1.-Col. William H. H. Taylor, Fifth Ohio Cavalry.

No. 2.-Brig. Gen. James R. Chalmers, C. S. Army.

No. 1.

Report of Col. William H. H. Taylor, Fifth Ohio Cavalry.

HDQRS. FIFTH REGT. OHIO VOLUNTEER CAVALRY, Third Brig., First Div., Army West Tennessee, April 3, 1862.

GEN.: I respectfully beg to report that, in obedience to your orders, I proceeded from this camp at midnight with about 400 men of this regiment in the direction of Corinth. Being without guides, and the night so dark, after having marched some 4 miles we halted until near daybreak. About a mile and a half beyond the house of Mr. Chambers we came upon the enemy's pickets, 9 in number, upon whom the advance guard immediately charged, wounding 1 rebel and making another prisoner. The prisoner's name is Lammon, and [he is] a private in the First Alabama Cavalry. We chased the rebels some distance in the direction of Greer's, and after obtaining a guide discovered that 15 of the enemy's cavalry were posted within a mile and a half of Greer's house. Marching in that direction, we met a gentleman calling himself Dr. Parker, whom we had seen two hours previously at the house of Chambers, when, after asking his services as a guide, pleaded ignorance of the surrounding country and want of a horse, while after our departure he had saddled his horse and ridden some 3 miles, and upon the evidence of a woman living near the picket post he certainly had given information to the rebels of our approach. I accordingly arrested him, and have brought him to camp for your examination.

Finding no trace of the fugitive rebels, I ordered my command back to camp, arriving here at 9 a.m. I learned that at Monterey the rebels have three regiments of infantry, one of cavalry, and a battery of artillery. They are also in force with cavalry on the other side of Lick Creek.

I have the honor to remain, your obedient servant,

W. H. H. TAYLOR, Col. Fifth Ohio Volunteer Cavalry.

No. 2.

Report of Brig. Gen. James R. Chalmers, C. S. Army.

HDQRS. ADVANCE, April 3, 1862.

MAJ.: Col. Clanton has just reported verbally to me that the enemy's pickets attacked his advance pickets about daylight this morning, and he fears that 2 of his men were captured, though he was not able to state accurately the facts. As soon as I am accurately informed I will report to you.

Your order to prepare for movement has been received and given to the troops.

Our commissary stores have not arrived, but are expected hourly. We have on hand one day's rations ready cooked.

I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


OR, Ser. I, Vol. 10, pt. I, p. 87.

          3, Pro-Union sentiment in Waynesborough, an entry from Col. Jacob Ammen's diary of march to and battle at Pittsburg Landing

No circumstantial reports filed

* * * *

April 3.-Passed through Waynesborough; small Union flags on some houses; women ask to let the band play some old tunes-Yankee Doodle, &c. The music makes them weep for joy. March 15 miles and encamp. Very poor country, bad roads; land poor 5 miles after passing Mount Pleasant to this place.

* * * *

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 10, pt. 1, p. 331.

          3, "If I dont [sic] talk with them at least 15 minutes they think they are not properly cared for, & if I do I spend 2250 minutes or 37½ hours which cant [sic] be did [sic] in one [sic] day." The problems of operating a Union hospital in Murfreesboro; an excerpt from the letter of Surgeon William M. Eames to his wife in Ohio

Union Coll. Hospital

April 3rd 1862 [sic]

Dearest wife,

I have rec'd your letters up to the 24th of March & I am very glad to hear of your continued improvement 7 that the rest are all well. It is 7 P.M. & such a days work as I have done to day is really astonishing to myself. I tho't [sic] I knew before some of the perplexities of soldiering but I give it up. I just begin to see what can be done in a military way. Just think of prescribing for 150 very [sic] sick men, & all of them blue & homesick & most of them wanting me [sic] to get them a furlough our discharge. If I dont [sic] talk with them at least 15 minutes they think they are not properly cared for, & if I do I spend 2250 minutes or 37½ hours which cant [sic] be did [sic] in one [sic] day. Then I have to see that they are all properly fed & washed & don't [sic] get lousy[.] Then there is any amount of Captains to give directions about their men & make themselves disagreeable & a score of privates to see their friends who are sick. After the sick were all prescribed for & the rooms all full & everything swept up, up comes an Ambulance load of sick & grunting, then another then 4 more & after a little we have 200 sick & grunting men to look to me [sic] for beds & rations. I have no beds & only cooking utensils enough to cook for 100 men at the outside & two green boys [sic] for cooks. The word soon goes out that we are not taking care of the men & in come captains Colonels Doctors & Lieutenants to sputter and bluster. I confess I could not stand it & left to see the Paymaster & thought I didn't care a cuss [sic] for anything. Didn't care whether school kept or not, but after getting the money due I hastened back & put forth my best endeavers [sic] to bring order out of confusion & not we have our rooms all full & the halls nearly ditto & two men dead & one dying, just brot [sic] in. We are in for three funerals tomorrow & lots of other fun. I am writing in the midst of the greatest hubbub - have had one row with a Wisconsin Capt. & several calls from privates & papers & letters presented with discriptive lists [sic] of men & I can hardly tell what to write or what to think – but I feel first rate & am quite well [sic]. Our Reg marches to-morrow at 6 A.M. & I feel rather bad to think of being left behind but will try to make the best of it. I have got a good place, & ought to feel contented as I got rid of helping to put up tents & pack & unpack & above all of living on the damp ground. I got my pay 392 ¼ dolls [sic] – up to March 1st….

One or two brigades have gone to-day & all the rest go tomorrow & another one is expected soon. Hope they wont [sic] stop here for I have got sick enough in all conscience to see to without any other Brigades.

Rob.[1] has been undergoing an examination but has not yet to through. Dont [sic] know how he will do so now as the examiners have gone. Would give 20 dolls myself if he had only passed & got appointed with me in this place, but still he may do so yet. The prospect is pretty fair if he can only catch up.

The division stops at Shelbyville & he will go on there the fore part of next week.

Have paid out 5 or six dolls for things to fix up the Hospital with but hope Uncle Sam will pay back. They leave a guard with me so I feel safe.

I must close & go to bed as I am very tired. Tomorrow will be the worst [sic] day for me of the whole year & I dread it.

Very aff'ly [sic] yours,

Wm. M. Eames

William Mark Eames Papers

3, "A Patriotic Lady."

—One of our best known gentlewomen—born, we believe, near or within this city—says the Mobile (Alabama) Advertiser—in sending a portion of money to this office, accompanied it with the following note. She has come of a brave race of true Southerners, and it is not strange, therefore, that her heart and life, if need be, are in this work. Such words ought to inspire our people:

["] Think nothing of the delay, but remember that if times are hard with the men, how much harder for widows. Our only comfort in making so many sacrifices is that we had rather die than yield to Lincoln's government. Every foot of this land is dear to me, and I say contend for every inch of its precious soil, sacred to the memory of grandparents, parents and husband, for they all rest quietly under the sod of Alabama, where I hope to rest with my children by my side. May God keep the unhallowed feet of the enemy from ever touching this sacred spot. I have not a doubt of our final success and victory; but, oh! we may wade through a sea of blood; but then we will have the comfort to know that we bought our children's liberty at a price not with money, but blood. Truly, Lincoln acts upon the principle, annihilate or subjugate! May the Ruler of the Universe touch his Pharaobic heart ere he turns him and his army into this sea of blood.["]

Memphis Daily Appeal, April 3, 1862.

3, A new weapon invented by the Reverend Mr. Graves of Memphis

A New Lance.—The Rev. Mr. Graves, a well known elder of the Baptist church, yesterday showed us a new lance of his invention, which he warrants bound to kill. The blade is triangular, the edges are serrated like a saw, and the wound it would produce would paralyze the whole system. At the end is a weight of iron, by which the center of gravity is thrown lower down the shaft than in the ordinary pike and lance. Below the blade is a guard, in a crescent form, the inner portion of which is formed so as to cut on drawing back the lance. The shaft doubles up in the center for easy carriage. It is intended for both horse and infantry.

Memphis Daily Appeal, April 3, 1862.





          3, Governor Isham G. Harris' letter confirming Confederate elections in Tennessee\

August 1863

Letter from Governor Harris, of Tennessee


To the Editor of the Winchester (Tenn.) Bulletin.

Tullahoma, Tenn., April 3, 1863.

My attention has been called to the following paragraph in your issue of the 21st ultimo[2]: -

It has been settled that there will be no election for Governor of Tennessee, in August next, if the federal army continue to hold the Middle and West sections of that State. By virtue of the constitution Governor Harris holds his office until his successor is elected.

A similar [paragraph appeared in the Memphis Appeal of the 27th ult.

Allow me to suggest that it is settled by the constitution of Tennessee that there shall be an election for Governor, Senators and Representatives, on the first Thursday in August, and there is no power in or out of the state which can change or annul this constitutional requirement.

The election by all means and certainly will be held at the time fixed by the constitution. We should therefore, at the proper time, take all necessary preparatory steps.

Forgetting all the differences of opinion upon minor questions of the past, we should select a good and true man for each position, in whose support all true patriots can cordially unite.

If we will present one and but one such candidate in each elective district throughout the State, federal bayonets cannot prevent the election of sound Southern rights men to the positions of Governor, representatives in Congress and the General Assembly.

The people of that portion of Tennessee within the enemy's lines present the proudest spectacle of heroic firmness in their patriotic devotion to our cause. We may confidently rely upon their cordial co-operation so far as they may be permitted to vote or take part in the election.

But long before August, the rivers will have fallen to low water mark, giving us an open field in which to meet the enemy. [sic] I feel that I hazard very little in expressing the confident belief, that, before election day, we will  have crushed or driven from our State the miserable mercenaries and vandals who have so long plundered and oppressed a brave, true and patriotic people, leaving every portion of the State free and untrammeled in the exercise of the elective franchise.

Very respectfully,

Isham G. Harris.

New York Herald, April 21, 1863.[3]





          3, Skirmish near Raleigh

Report of Col. George E. Waring, jr., Fourth Missouri Cavalry, commanding First Brigade, of skirmish near Raleigh, April 3, 1864.

HDQRS. FIRST BRIGADE, CAVALRY DIVISION, Raleigh, Tenn., April 3, 1864.

CAPT.: In obedience to the orders of Brig.-Gen. Grierson, my command marched from this place at 8 a. m. to-day, on the road to Oakland and Somerville.

My advance guard, Nineteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry, learned from citizens and negroes [sic] that the enemy was stationed in heavy force in the swamps between Leak's and Oakland, also that from 3,000 or 5,000 rebels under Neely and McCulloch were encamped from 3 to 6 miles east of Oakland on the Somerville road. They were said to have orders to check every attempt of ours to advance toward Bolivar. At Leak's the advance came upon the picket of the enemy, and almost immediately a skirmish ensued. As nearly as I can judge there were from 500 to 700 of the enemy actually engaged. The Seventh Indiana Cavalry at once re-enforced the advance guard, making with the Nineteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry almost 350 men. The enemy very soon retired in such a manner as to seem to invite us to follow into the swamp, which lay immediately in front of our position. Our flanking parties had discovered a very large supporting force of the enemy. The whole number of rebel troops seen by us could not have been less than 1,500, and was probably 2,000. This seemed to confirm the testimony of the people along the road, and as my instructions were not to bring on a general engagement with a superior force. I did not take the Second New Jersey Cavalry into action, but retired slowly and without confusion, notifying the supporting columns on my flanks of my action. I arrived at this place at 7.30 o'clock this evening, leaving a strong picket at Union Depot.

My loss was 1 man killed and 3 wounded. Both dead and wounded were brought off the field. Capt. Wenick, Nineteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry, is missing; whether he was killed or captured, or whether, as is not unlikely, he made his escape in the woods, I am not able to say. The troops of my command behaved with coolness and bravery. My thanks are especially due to Lieut.-Col. Hess, commanding Nineteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry, and Maj. Beck, commanding detachment Seventh Indiana Cavalry, for the skill and judgment with which they conducted the skirmish.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

GEO. E. WARING, JR., Col. Fourth Missouri Cavalry, Cmdg.

PS. It is believed that we killed 6 of the enemy on the ground.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. I, pp. 582-583.

          3, U. S. N. gunboats begin patrolling Tennessee River from Sandy to Duck River

CAIRO, April 4, 1864.

Maj. Gen. W. T. SHERMAN, Nashville, Tenn.:

Your communications to Gen. Hurlbut and Gen. Veatch went forward promptly by dispatch-boat. Gun-boats were sent up the Tennessee yesterday to watch the crossing from Sandy to Duck River.

M. BRAYMAN, Brig.-Gen., Cmdg.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. III, p. 253.

          3, Federal scouts from Athens to Ducktown environs and construction of earthen fortifications at Athens


Athens, Tenn., April 3, 1864.


SIR: Immediately upon the receipt of information of the approach of the enemy, I sent out citizen scouts upon all the roads leading to this place. At 4 a. m. I received from hand of scout sent to Columbus the following message:


Columbus, Tenn., April 2, 1864.


Athens, Tenn.:

SIR: Your scout, F. A. Cameron, has just arrived, and I send the following information: The rebels, some 500 strong, approached to within 12 miles of this place on the Ducktown road, but I am satisfied that they have fallen back, in all probability by the Connesauga River. Colonel LaGrange, commanding Second Cavalry Brigade, is on the opposite side of the river with some 1,400 men. All is safe at present.

G. H. PURDY, Maj., Commanding Regiment.

Scouts reported to me all right, and are reporting now. All pronounced everything quiet.

I impressed yesterday and to-day all the negroes [sic] in town and put them at work upon the fortification; ran a line considerably shorter than the one laid out, and at night had constructed of logs, brush, and dirt a very respectable fortification. The work as now built is smaller than the one planned, but is large enough. The line laid out for me was 1,687 feet in length--a very long line for the force likely to be here. I shall keep at work and will make a strong redoubt.


ARBA N. WATERMAN, Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding Post.

OR, Ser. I, Vol. 32, pt. III, p. 240.

          3, "The bad conduct of our own men troubled me greatly." An entry from the Diary of Eliza Rhea Anderson Fain

Last night I lay down with a troubled heart. The bad conduct of our own men troubled me greatly. This morning as I was assisting to prepare my breakfast I was much impressed with the thought we may be reduced to great want for provisions, everything looks so dark and gloomy. The rain continues to fall, so that we cannot do anything about farming. Our horses have all been taken out of the country. The able bodied portion of most families, white and black are gone. Women and children with few boys and a few stout black men are all that's left.

Fain Diary.





[1] Unitentified. Perhaps his brother or brother-in-law.

[2] The February 21, 1863 issue of the Winchester Bulletin is not extant.



James B. Jones, Jr.

Public Historian

Editor, The Courier

Tennessee Historical Commission

2941 Lebanon Road

Nashville, TN  37214


(615)-532-1549  FAX


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