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Co. B ~ 44th TN Regiment
Submitted by Alma E. Dailey- Harings
Dec 09, 1861:
John R. SANDERS of Grundy Co Tennessee was 27 years old when he enlisted there as a private into Co B of the 44th TN Infantry Regiment at Camp Troudsale TN in December of 1861.
The s/o Thomas SANDERS Sr. and Mary "Polly" ROBERTS. of Pelham, TN., Pvt. John R Sanders was eventually captured and held at Camp Chase Ohio and Fort Delaware prison camps until the end of the war.
I am seeking proof of the circumstances surrounding his eventual capture which is said to have happened on July 14 1863 at Petersburg VA.
Pvt John R Sanders was the brother to my gg gf Milton Porter SANDERS also of Pelham TN. Milton was a sharpshooter with Co A (Turney's) 1st TN . To learn more about John R and his family, use the links found at the top of this page.
I do not have access to John's confederate pension application(#S10175) and have been unable to find any other documentation or related regimental history to support the previously mentioned date and place of capture.
I have concluded that the 44th TN Infantry (Consolidated) Regiment was not in the area of Petersburg VA until the spring of 1864. If I am correct then it would have been impossible for John R Sanders of Co B to have been captured there in July of 1863. On the other hand, if I have misinterpreted the history or strayed from the correct path, I'm hoping that someone out there can help me get back on course at this point.
I have come across some very interesting and informative regimental histories on the 44th thus far and have shared them here ( with permission).
I welcome and encourage your comments and suggestions. Thank you for your interest. Alma
'Abandon Hope all ye who enter here!'
JIM BARNES, who now (1941) almost a centennarian (98 years of age), presents in simple, but graphic language a brief and wholesome example of a life lived simply, yet giving evidence of Christian work and righteousness worthy of being imitated by the most exalted.
I, J. W. Barnes, was born on June 16, 1843, in Burke Hollow, Williamson County, Tennessee. My parents were of Scotch-Irish descent and migrated from Brunswick County, Virginia, to Williamson County, Tennessee.
When I was a small boy, my parents moved from Burke Hollow to the Split-Log community, and I went to school at the old Split-Log schoolhouse, the "blueback speller" being my only book, and I went to school for quite a short time, reaching the word "baker" in my book and here my "book learning" ended. The school was taught by Pink Read.
At this time my parents were living on the farm of Esquire Mack Winstead, and he hired me to carry brick, made by Jeff Thompson and Andrew McMahon, to build the Esquire Winstead home which still stands, a splendid home, and a sample of good work.
When a small boy I "dropped corn" for neighbor farmers for 10 cents per day, and as I got to be a "big boy" I plowed for them at 25 cents per day. I recall going to Nashville with my father, on a wagon and walking part of way "to keep warm", and we crossed Cumberland River at the foot of Broad Street. It was ice, "frozen over." The streets of the city were lighted by oil lamps swinging from a post, and wagons were drawn through the streets of Nashville by mules and oxen. From Winstead's farm we moved to the farm of Jesse Morris, where I lived for five years, and from there I moved to Nolensville pike on the Everett Patterson farm.
At this time I was 17 years old and the war was going on; this was in June 1861, and in July I volunteered, joining the army; 55th Tennessee Regiment, under Captain Smith, who was soon promoted to colonel, and John Overton became my captain. About this time I was stricken down with measles, and came near dying, and was sent home, so know nothing of happenings of war until after battle of Shiloh.
I was riding with Dr. Patterson for protection until I could
get back to my company. Dr. Patterson's Company captured four Yankees. Two at Major Harding's place and two at General Graham's place near Franklin. Dr. Patterson ordered me to take the prisoners to Triune, Tennessee. I was given a note to a man, near Franklin, ordering him to let me have two horses to carry the prisoners, and a boy to bring the horses back. He couldn't furnish us but one horse so two Yankees rode one horse and a Yankee each rode behind the two boys who were going to help me. The boy rode behind me.
We got to Triune about sundown. I walked until nearly dark trying to find a place to keep the prisoners but no one would have them. After a while I met a man I hardly knew, whose name was Carter. He said he would help me out. After going several places he finally got us sheltered at Hutton's Tailor Shop and we were provided with a good meal. Carter stayed until it was,pretty late.
After he had gone I told the prisoners how the town was wrought up and I believed if they were to go outside the shop they would be immediately shot. One of the prisoners was a lieutenant and was real friendly. When my time came to watch I went to sleep. I was young and had been very sick. I had no idea a boy could be so tired. When I woke there sat my Yankee lieutenant with my gun between his knees. He said, "surrender", then he laughed and said, "If I had not known the house was being watched and I would have been shot, I would have been gone; but I wouldn't have harmed you, Jim. Then and there a Yankee and a Rebel became friends.
We stayed in Triune two nights. While we were there a lady near there sent me word to bring my prisoners down, and she would make some music for them. We went. She was very polite to them and they to her. She played some of the sweetest music I ever heard. All at once she jumped up and began to abuse the Yankees. As I was the cause of them being there I was ashamed and said, "Let's go". They never said a word until they got to the gate; then they turned and looked at the house, and said, "If we ever come back here we will burn this house.
I turned the prisoners over again to Dr. Patterson at Nolensville, and he sent them on to Clover Bottom Farm for exchange. I did not go on because I wanted to stop at home for some clean clothes and see my family before joining my company at Shelbyville, Tennessee. The prisoners were sent on and
exchanged. Later the same lieutenant's company was stationed on the Dr. Patterson place, near Wrencoe. The lieutenant inquired about me from one of my neighbors. He found out where my home was and went to see my parents. My father was nearly dead and did die a short time after. When he was certain they were my parents and that they had no food, he had meat, flour, rice, sugar, and coffee sent to my home. He stationed a guard near by who would not let a Yankee come near. This was done for my family because I showed kindness to him.
But this wasn't the last of my lieutenant. About a year after the war was over he came back to Dr. Patterson's. He inquired of Miss Ann Patterson where I lived. She told him I lived above Nolensville and would send her boy for me. When the boy came and told me, 1 flew into a rage, and would not go, because I had learned how badly my people had been treated by other Yankees, and I was full of hate. I sent a note saying I couldn't come. If my Yankee lieutenant is living today, or if he has passed on, I wish he could know that I am sorry; and today I have no hatred in my heart for any man.
I was then commanded to report at Shelbyville, Tennessee, and rejoined my regiment. I was in several skirmishes up to the time of the battle of Stones River, where Cleburne, and Gen. Bughrod Johnson fought. This battle was fought on Manson Pike near Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and is known as battle of Murfreesboro, or Stones River battle. I was in many skirmishes between this battle and battle of Chickamauga near Chattanooga. We then fell back, overpowered, and fought in battle of Ringgold, Georgia, under Gen. Forrest. Then later I was in battle at Knoxville, and from there I was sent to Virginia, and on April 2nd, 1865, General A. P. Hill was killed at Gettysburg.
Near Drury's Bluff, Virginia, I was stationed to guard two widow ladies, Mrs. Robinson and Mrs. Goode. I had been there a few days when General Shaw came by and wanted to find how many Yankees there were in the valley. He asked me where he could get a high place. I told him if he would give me his glasses I would find a place. When I went up on the house top through the attic and looked down in the valley I almost ran, for the Yankees looked so close I could see the eagles on their coats. The general went up and so many followed him they were soon detected. They began bombarding the house. The ladies were so frightened they left. That left Uncle Jerry, Aunt Liza and, of course, I stayed with them until I could get further orders. Aunt Liza was afraid and Uncle Jerry sat sharpening his razor on a brick bat. As I was so hungry I told Liza to kill one of the big fat hens and cook it for me. While she was cooking it a shell came over cut a limb off an apple tree. The apples poured down into the hole where she was cooking, we thought we were killed, but Liza saved the chicken. That was the best chicken I ever tasted.
I fought in the battle of Drury's Bluff, Virginia. When Ft. Harrison, Virginia, was blown up and taken by the Yankees, I was sitting on the breastworks watching the battle in the valley below. General Robert E. Lee told me to come down, as I might be shot. General Lee was kind to all his boys. He sometimes wore an old straw hat to keep the enemy from knowing him. I've seen him many times riding "Traveler", his treasured horse, and a graceful rider was General Lee. At time of my capture, I was serving in the company of Judge Henry Cook of Franklin, Tennessee. Appomattox followed a few days later. There were 10,000 of our Confederate boys who were so outnumbered by Yanks as to force us to surrender to General Grant on April 9, 1865, and we boys were sent prisoners of war to Point Lookout, Maryland, where we were in prison until July.
We were sent down James River in small boats to prison, and I saw a boat coming up James River. President Abraham Lincoln was in that boat. The Yankee guards told us to give the Federal salute to our President. I said, "No, sir, he ain't no President of mine. My words may be forced from me different but my heart is unchanged." President Lincoln stood, hat in hand, smiling at us, like the great gentleman he was, but I, Jim Barnes, with other Southerners gave the Rebel Yell, to the President, a Yankee, but I never heard any unkindness spoken by Southern soldiers of Abe Lincoln, and I am sorry he couldn't live to weld the North and South together in harmony.
When I was in prison I was allowed to fish in the Chesapeake Bay. My tackle wasn't very good, but I caught some nice fish. I had no way to cook them so I had to throw them back. As I threw them back I cried and thought of Old Mill Creek, and home.
They were very good to us in prison, but they gave us such a little to eat we were hungry all the time. When we were first carried to Point Lookout, Maryland, the guards just shot a man on any pretense, but as soon as the officers found this out they put on new guards and we were protected. Every once in a while Major Bradey would scatter small squares of tobacco and let the prisoners scramble for them. One day I was going up to see if my name was on the bulletin board to be released. I met Major Bradey who said, "If you want any tobacco you had better come on back for I am going to scatter some. I said, "No sir, Major, I wasn't raised that way. I have never picked up any of your tobacco." He said, "Come here, my boy." When I went to him he gave me several chews.
After I was paroled in June of 1865 I started home from Maryland.
We traveled by boat and train. When I reached Nashville I started out Cherry Street which is now Fourth Avenue, walking. I had walked a good distance when I heard a wagon behind me. I thought, if my being a soldier does not entitle me to a ride I won't ask to ride. The man was Bob Williams, and he asked me to ride.
As I came out the pike I passed my sister's house. Her husband, George Chism, and her children came out to see me. They wanted me to eat with them, but I wanted to see my mother so bad I couldn't eat. I said, "No, Nancy, I am going home."
When I got in sight of home I could see Lucy, my sister, standing in the doorway and mother shading her eyes to see who was coming. When they saw who it was they both started to the gate. Lucy got all the way, but mother sank to the ground. I took her in my arms as if she had been a baby and carried her in the house. I found everything gone, my father dead and Lucy and mother trying to take care of my brother who was sick.
In July, after being imprisoned in April, we were paroled and I came back to my home in the old Volunteer State to grand old Tennessee, the home of the free and the land of the brave. Later I farmed for the "other fellow," for wages, until 1872, when I rented a little farm on Nolensville pike at the point known as the old "Rock Well," near the line of Williamson and Davidson Counties and with my mother Katy Barnes, and sister Lucy, we kept house and farmed there for four years, my father having gone on to his reward before this. Then I rented the old Buford farm near by, joining the Joe Pettus farm, where I lived 11 years, near enough to each other from our yards, to speak or call, and lived kindly and brotherly toward each other, good friends and neighbors, and could do brotherly kindness to one another and borrow from a dollar, up to a threshing machine.
I recall helping him build a hay shed, and when ready for shingling the roof, I said, "Let's divide the job, you take Lunse, his small son, and I will take Jim, another son, and Joe and Lunse would beat us every time. Another incident I recall: Joe Pettus and I went to Nashville with John Cochran, and carried Jim the boy. We went in a spring wagon, and the mule ran away, from a scare at a negro woman carrying a bundle of clothes on her head. The mule jumped a fence, leaving the wagon on one side and the mule on the other. We looked about for Jim, the boy, and we saw that little tow-head running down the road, as if for life. The Pettus family was so good to us, we could never do enough for them because we were poor, and never able to do what we wanted. We could and did take care of the older children when the parents and smaller ones went to visit relatives at Triune and Woodbury.
I married a good woman, a good wife and mother along these years, Maggie Guy, and she was a real companion and helpmeet all along our journey through life together. We were sorry when it seemed best for us to move away from the Pettus neighbors; for the eleven years, we "each could feel a brother's sigh, and with him bear a part, when sorrow flowed, from eye to eye and joy from heart to heart." My mother was aged when we moved away, and Joe Pettus brought his wagon and team and sent a load to our new home and brought his carriage and tenderly lifted my old mother into his carriage and moved her with my sister comfortably. "Love is the golden chain that binds the happy souls above,' And he's an heir of heaven, who finds his bosom glow with love."
The Pettus boys, Jim and Lunse, used to come to my humble little home at night, after supper, in winter, and I would half-sole their shoes, and we would pop corn, and enjoy the evening, as boys, and since our separation, and the changes made by time the boys as well as the girls have not forgotten nor have they forsaken me in my declining and aged years, but come to see me once and again, remembering our love and companionship in years gone by. And my prayer is, "God be with us 'til we meet again."
I must not forget an event of deep importance in my life, happening in 1873, September. I joined Concord Baptist Church, under the preaching of Bro. Billy Whitsett, and in 1876, I was elected deacon of the same church, and have discharged my duty in that office to the best of my ability, and knowledge, through the years until the present time. In 1915 I bought the old Newt Briley farm on Mill Creek road where I live and will spend the remainder of my life. My only child, Mrs. Nellie King, and family, share my home, and minister to my needs and comforts, and a loving dutiful Christian daughter she is. Our home is also shared by two sisters of my wife's (who has passed on to a better home many years ago). Jim Barnes
Back To The Top
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXIII/1 [S# 34]
Report of Brig. Gen. Bushrod R. Johnson, C.S.A, commanding brigade, Stewart's division, Hardee's corps.
compliance with Special Orders, No. 21, dated headquarters Stewart's
division, July 8, 1863, I have the honor to submit the following report
of the operation of this brigade at Hoover's Gap, and during the
movement from that point to the vicinity of Chattanooga, embracing the
My brigade consists of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment, Col. John S. Fulton; Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment, Col. J. M. Hughs; <ar34_602> Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment, Col. R. H. Keeble; Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, Lieut. Col. W. W. Floyd; Jefferson Artillery (a battery of four pieces), commanded by Capt. P. Darden (Napoleon guns).
At about 1 p.m. on Wednesday, June 24, a dark and rainy day, two boys, muddied with hard riding, appeared at my headquarters at Fairfield, and reported the enemy advancing from Hoover's Gap. Within a few minutes a wounded cavalryman and the adjutant of the First [Third] Kentucky Cavalry Regiment confirmed this report. I immediately ordered my brigade under arms, and soon after received an order from Major-General Stewart to hold my command in readiness to move at a moment's warning.
By the time that my brigade was formed, a part of [J. R.] Butler's First [Third] Kentucky Regiment of Cavalry, under Lieutenant.Colonel [J. W.] Griffith, which had in part occupied Hoover's Gap, appeared at the intersection of the road down Noah's Fork with the Fairfield and Manchester road, about 600 yards from my headquarters, and stated to me that the enemy in force had moved rapidly upon the cavalry in the gap, and that Colonel Butler, of the First [Third] Kentucky, with a portion of that regiment, had moved before them down the Manchester pike, while Lieutenant-Colonel Griffith's detachment moved in front of a Federal force, which followed them down the Noah's Fork road. I immediately moved my brigade through the heavy rain to the junction of these roads, replenished the ammunition of Lieutenant-Colonel Griffith's detachment, and, by instruction from Major-General Stewart, sent it back with my aide-de-camp (Capt. W. T. Blakemore) on the Noah's Fork road to find the position of the enemy. This detachment went to a point 13 miles from the Manchester pike and some 3 miles south of Beech Grove. Here the detachment was divided, one-half proceeding direct to Beech Grove by a country road; the other half was instructed to go to the same point by way of Noah's Fork road and the Manchester pike. The two parties met at Beech Grove without seeing anything of the enemy. The McBride Creek road and the road toward Manchester were then picketed, and the balance of Lieutenant-Colonel Griffith's detachment moved forward to the hill on the right of the pike and in front of Hoover's Gap. This position was taken soon after the Federal cavalry(which had passed down the Manchester pike) had returned and the Federal infantry had fallen back over Garrison's Fork, under the attack of Brigadier-General Bate's brigade, which had advanced from its encampment between Fairfield and the gap and engaged the enemy. On proceeding down the McBride Creek road to join my headquarters, Captain Blakemore captured a Federal cavalryman and turned him over with his horse and equipments to a guard of Lieutenant-Colonel Griffith's command.
About 4 p.m. my brigade moved through the rain and mud from Fairfield, under orders from Major-General Stewart. The Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment was placed in position on the Puncheon Camp road, beyond Mr. Neill's plantation and near Mr. Wood's house, and the Twenty-fifth, Twenty-third, and Seventeenth Tennessee Regiments, with Darden's battery, proceeded to a point on Garrison's Fork, near Jacobs' Store, to support Brigadier-General Bate's command, where it arrived about 6 p.m. One section of Darden's battery was immediately placed in position on a wooded eminence on the south side of the Manchester pike and on the right of Bate's brigade. It fired a few rounds at one of the enemy's batteries, when it became too dark to aim with accuracy, and the firing ceased. The other section of this battery was placed on the same eminence during the night. <ar34_603>
About dark, I was ordered to relieve as far as possible Bate's brigade. The Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment relieved Brigadier-General Bate's battalion of sharpshooters, on the right of the Garrison Fork, on the right of Bate's line, and in front of the Thirty-seventh and Fifteenth Tennessee Regiments, which regiments also retired when the Twenty-third advanced to take its position as skirmishers. At the same time the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment relieved Col. [A. F.] Rudler's Georgia regiment on a hill on the west side of Garrison's Fork and on the left of Bate's line, while the Seventeenth was placed on a conical hill about 1,200 yards west of Garrison's Fork, and about 600 yards to the left of the hill occupied by the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment, all on the old Sharp farm. It was quite dark when the Seventeenth took its position, and the enemy's line seemed to be imperfectly indicated by a few campfires in the woods about 400 yards in front. The Twentieth Tennessee Regiment, of Bate's brigade, was not relieved at the time, but occupied a position immediately on the left or west of the Garrison Fork and on the right of the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment. In this position, with a strong line of skirmishers in front, my men rested as far as possible on their arms during the night. They were exposed to a drenching rain from about 3 till 6 o'clock on the morning of June 25. Indeed, the whole period included in this report was remarkable for the number of heavy rains, to all of which our troops were exposed without tents or any other shelter.
Brigadier-General Clayton's brigade arrived in rear of my line about 10 p.m., and with Capt. J. W. Green, of the Engineers, and Brigadier-General Clayton I was engaged most of the night in selecting the excellent positions on my right which that brigade occupied before the dawn of day. The Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment, which Major-General Stewart had ordered up, arrived at my lines by daylight and took the position occupied by the Twenty-third, which was moved to the west side of the Garrison's Fork, and relieved the Twentieth Tennessee Regiment, of Bate's brigade.
About 3 o'clock at night a section of artillery (two brass pieces) was posted on the hill with the Twenty.fifth Tennessee Regiment, about 100 yards in front of that regiment. When the enemy discovered these guns in the morning, they moved a battery to a position in front of the knob occupied by the Seventeenth, and in a short time disabled one of the pieces by a shot through its trail. The section was then withdrawn and replaced by a section of iron rifled Parrott guns from the Eufaula Battery, of Brigadier-General Bate's brigade.
At about 9 o'clock on the morning of June 25, Darden's battery opened upon the enemy advancing in line of battle. The infantry soon retired and a battery responded, until Captain Darden ceased firing by order of Major-General Stewart. The section of the Eufaula Battery stationed with the Twenty-fifth became engaged at the same time. The fire of the enemy's artillery was mostly directed during the day and the following morning at the positions held by our batteries, and exhibited excellent practice. The heavy line of skirmishers of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment, consisting of Company A (the only company of that regiment armed with long-range guns), kept up a continued fire on the enemy's skirmishers in the skirt of woods near Jacobs' Store, though they were repeatedly instructed to reserve their fire and not to waste their ammunition.
About 10 o'clock, these skirmishers having nearly exhausted their ammunition, I relieved them by 100 men from the Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment, for whom I exchanged the same number of men of <ar34_604> the Forty-fourth, armed with percussion muskets. About 600 yards to the left and rear of the knob occupied by the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment is a piece of woods on the slope of the hill in front of Mr. Robertson's house. This hill was on the prolongation of the enemy's line, and was separated from the woods which they occupied by a clover-field about 500 yards wide. Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd very judiciously posted Company H, of his regiment, under its captain ([G. W.] O'Neal), near the Robertson house, to watch the movements of the enemy and check his advance if he attempted to move in that direction. The Seventeenth remained quietly in position during the day and succeeding night, but the skirmishers all along the rest of my line continued to fire at those of the enemy, taking deliberate, and in many cases effective, aim. The enemy in front of the Twenty-fifth were seen carrying away the killed or wounded, which quite excited the marksmen of this regiment.
The Twenty-third lost this day Sergt A J Puryear of Company A, mortally wounded, and Second Lieut. A. T. Donaldson and Private A. J. Potter, of Company A, slightly wounded. The Twenty-fifth lost Privates W. J. Barry, of Company D, killed, and Lewis Odle, of Company E, wounded in the leg.
About 5 p.m. Captain Darden received orders from Major-General Stewart to fire 6 rounds, when the battery on Signal Hill, on the right of the Manchester pike, opened fire. The order was complied with, and his shots seemed to be very effective on the battery of the enemy in his front.
In the afternoon of June 25, the Ninth Alabama Regiment, of Bate's brigade, took position on the right of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment and on the left of Darden's battery. At dark the Forty-fourth Tennessee was ordered to the west of the Garrison Fork, and took the position occupied by the Twenty-third, which was moved to a spur of the hill on which the Twenty-fifth and a section of the Eufaula Battery was posted. The firing of skirmishers did not entirely cease during the night, and the enemy commenced the work with much spirit early in the morning, my skirmishers duly responding.
10 and 11 a.m. on June 26, a heavy line of the enemy's skirmishers
entered the clover-field on the left of the Seventeenth and between the
woods occupied by Captain O'Neal's company and those occupied by the
Federals. The line of skirmishers was followed by two lines of
about 200 yards apart, of which I especially noticed one regiment
formed in column of divisions. Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd, anticipating
this movement of the enemy by aid of the indications furnished by the
bursting of caps and other signs of preparation in the enemy's lines,
threw his regiment in position, facing to the westward, to meet it,
and opened a heavy fire on the left flank of the enemy when it was
from 300 to 600 yards distant, passing through the clover-field, and
with the aid of a few rounds from the section of the Eufaula Battery
checked it, throwing it into some disorder. The enemy's columns were
then making quite a circuit around Colonel Floyd's position, and other
lines were seen advancing on their left and rear. As the enemy's
skirmishers approached the woods near the Robertson house, Captain
O'Neal's men, posted behind trees, opened fire on them, and drove them
back to the main line.
About this time, a messenger from Major-General Stewart rode up to me on the hill occupied by the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment, and told me that General Stewart bade him say to me that he would have to fall back, and that I had as well commence the movement. I also at <ar34_605> this time discovered the Twentieth Tennessee Regiment, which had been posted on the Puncheon Camp road, moving out into the open field, quite a mile distant, in a direction toward the right flank of the enemy. Nearly directly in rear of and about 600 yards from the hill occupied by the Twenty-fifth and Twenty-third Tennessee Regiments, and of about equal height with it, is an open eminence toward which the enemy's line was advancing. I ordered Colonel Hughs to leave his skirmishers behind, and to move his regiment with the section of the Eufaula Battery on to that eminence, and sent to Colonel [T. B.] Smith, of the Twentieth, to inform him of the nature of my movement, and suggest to him the propriety of uniting with the left of my command.
At the same time I ordered the Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment to move to the hill occupied by the Forty-fourth, and change front, so as to face and resist the enemy. To Colonel Floyd I sent instructions to fall back with the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, having early in the day informed him in regard to the position he should take if compelled to abandon the hill on which he was stationed. Through Lieutenant-Colonel [John L.] McEwen [jr.], I ordered Colonel Fulton, of the Forty-fourth, to hold his position as long as it was safe, and then follow the movement of the other regiments of the brigade.
In the mean time Captain O'Neal held his position according to instructions received from Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd, keeping up a rapid fire until the enemy reached a fence some 40 yards in his front, and then he retired over favorable ground with the loss of 1 man wounded, who fell into the hands of the enemy. While the Seventeenth was engaging the column moving around our left flank, the enemy's skirmishers advanced to the edge of the field in its former front, and opened a brisk fire on the right of the regiment, and on its skirmishers, still deployed on the hill. Colonel Floyd held his position until the enemy had made a partial wheel to their left, and had passed the prolongation of his line, and he then retired by the left flank in excellent order, moving nearly parallel to the enemy's lines under the ineffectual fire of a battery of artillery and the enemy's advancing skirmishers. Immediately after the Seventeenth commenced retiring, a column of the enemy advanced from the woods in front of the hill it was quitting, and the enemy were seen all over the top before the skirmishers of the Seventeenth had reached the foot of the slope. The Seventeenth was engaged here some twenty-five or thirty minutes, and lost 1 man killed and 7 wounded. The skirmishers of the Twenty-fifth, under Captain [J. H.] Curtis, engaged those of the enemy in front, and held possession of the hill which a that regiment had occupied and abandoned until the knob, abandoned by the Seventeenth, was overrun by the enemy and the flank of the Seventeenth was under their cover. Corpl. J. J. Robinson, of Company E, Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment, was severely wounded here during the skirmishing.
Captain O'Neal, of the Seventeenth, and Captain Curtis, of the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiments, deserve great credit for the manner in which they commanded their skirmishers.
As soon as the orders were distributed for the change of positions in my brigade, I hastened to the eminence, which I had ordered to be occupied, and found the Twenty-fifth and the Eufaula Battery taking their position on it. I soon discovered that the enemy's line extended beyond the hill, and was moving still farther to my left. I consequently ordered Colonel Hughs to move the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment by the left flank along the edge of the woods, extending out to our left and bordering the open fields, through which the Federals were advancing, <ar34_606> and to keep the enemy in view and skirmishers well out to the front. The Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment now ascended the hill, and was formed behind the fence on the crest of the eminence, where it commanded a full view of the enemy's lines. The first line was within about 600 yards of the Seventeenth, and the troops before noticed advancing from the woods on the enemy's left and rear seemed to form a third line. Their number was perhaps 8,000 or 10,000 men. The lines in front of the Seventeenth raised a shout, and started forward at double-quick time, but at the second or third round of the Seventeenth, with perhaps as many rounds from the section of artillery, the front was decidedly checked and thrown into confusion. The section of the Eufaula Battery was now withdrawn without any order from or through me, but I have since understood that it was withdrawn by an officer of General Stewart's staff. After holding this eminence some fifteen or twenty minutes, during which the enemy was moving still to their right and around the base of the eminence, evidently with a view to outflank us, the Seventeenth fell back some 200 yards, during a very heavy shower of rain, which concealed the movement of the enemy from view. A Federal battery placed on the eminence first abandoned by the Seventeenth soon opened on our present position, and I ordered Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd to move his regiment by the left flank in the manner before indicated for the Twenty-fifth, and to connect with the latter regiment.
In the mean time the Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment maintained the position to which I had ordered it until there was some 800 yards between it and the Seventeenth, and I sent instructions to unite with that regiment, which it now did, and moved to the left with it. The Forty-fourth continued to hold its first position, and skirmish with the enemy in its front until the column of the enemy, advancing in th
e hollow in its rear, had gained the rear of its left flank when it moved by the right flank, passed under the hill along the Garrison Fork, and formed on the right of the Twenty-third near the eminence to which the Twenty-fifth was first ordered when our movement commenced, and which had just been abandoned by the Seventeenth. These movements were all conducted in an admirable manner, and as the object was evidently not to engage in a general battle, the movement of each regiment was well timed.
About the time that the Seventeenth, Twenty-third, and Forty-fourth were being put in motion by the left flank to move after the Twenty-fifth along the skirt of woods before indicated, Major [J. W.] Eldridge, of the artillery, reported to me with one Napoleon gun and a section of two light field pieces of [Frank] Maney's battery, which I requested him to place in position near Brigadier-General Bate's old headquarters (the Amick house).
About the same time I was informed, in answer to my inquiry of one of Major-General Stewart's staff (Major Eldridge, I think), that the other troops of the division had passed the Fairfield road immediately in my rear. When the middle of my brigade had reached the point indicated, I found the three guns duly posted under Captain Darden. Major Eldridge here informed me that he would post the other three guns of Darden's battery on an eminence near the Fairfield road, on the south side of the Matt Martin farm, and stated when Captain Darden fell back he would go to that position. Some 4 or 5 rounds were fired by our artillery, when the enemy's batteries, which had continually annoyed my infantry with shells during their flank movement, directed their fire on the position occupied by the guns under Captain Darden. The skirmishers of my leading or left regiment (the Twenty-fifth) also became <ar34_607> engaged here with the enemy's skirmishers. The artillery under Captain Darden then retired, under the impression that the instructions were to fire only a few rounds before doing so. As I rode back to look after the artillery, I was informed that the enemy was pressing down on my left, between the Twenty-fifth and Twentieth Tennessee Regiments, the latter of which had fallen back to my line. As the line of woods here bore off from the direction of the Fairfield road, and I reflected that to fall back through the wide fields in our rear, closely pursued by the enemy, might be attended by a heavy sacrifice of men, for which there seemed no necessity, I concluded to order my command back over the fields of the Matt Martin farm to a piece of woods on the south side, to which the enemy could only advance through open ground, exposed to the fire of our artillery. The enemy's artillery still continued to throw at my line both shot and shell, which were generally aimed too high. We, however, passed out of their line of fire when we entered the second woods. The two light pieces of Maney's battery fell back with Captain Darden, and a section of [Thomas H.] Dawson's battery, under Lieutenant [R. W.] Anderson, now reported to me in the woods occupied by the brigade. I selected for it a position near a small cabin, and I directed Lieutenant Anderson, who commanded the section, to mask his pieces and only fire canister shot when the enemy should approach to the proper distance. M infantry I placed on the right and left of the section of artillery, mostly under cover of large fallen timber, with instructions not to fire until the enemy should approach to within short range. The Twentieth Tennessee Regiment was here placed on the extreme left of my line. The skirmishers I threw out in front, with instructions not to show themselves, and
to retire before the enemy without firing a gun. The [enemy] soon approached, and by some means ascertaining the position of my line, threw into the Seventeenth and the battery some shells, which exploded with remarkable accuracy, while their skirmishers opened with small-arms and were responded to. My brigade fell back to gain a better cover, and the section of artillery returned to the rear of the strip of woods. I again pressed forward my line and rearranged its position, when Major-General Stewart ordered the section of artillery under Lieutenant Anderson to its former position. Major [Thomas K.J Porter, of the artillery, acting on General Stewart's staff, now took charge of the duty of posting this section of artillery, and during the subsequent shelling of our line by the enemy's artillery he was wounded on the head by a fragment of a shell. The enemy failed to advance to close range, and finally they ceased firing at about 3 p.m., without drawing from my command more than a few discharges from some of my skirmishers. The Seventeenth had here 11 men wounded, one mortally; the Twenty-third had 3 men wounded, and the Twenty-fifth I slightly wounded in the arm. Anderson's section lost I horse.
My brigade was thus engaged in maneuvering and skirmishing for a period of about four hours, during which the Seventeenth was perhaps most exposed, and suffered the greatest losses.
The conduct of the skirmishers and the officers commanding them in the Seventeenth and Twenty-fifth I have already reported.
On June 25, the skirmishers of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment repulsed in a handsome manner three attacks of the enemy, made with a view to drive them from the skirt of woods which they occupied. Lieutenant [W. A.] Vernon, of the Twenty-third, is especially mentioned by his colonel for the manner in which he discharged his duties in command of the skirmishers of that regiment. He is also mentioned as an officer of merit, who has served in several battles and always with honor. <ar34_608> Major [J G Lowe, of the Twenty-third, is also named for his attention, zeal, courage, and watchful foresight.
The movements of my brigade were all made under fire, and were performed neatly, without straggling, and with promptness and precision alike creditable to the officers and men. Captain Darden's battery frequently fired on the enemy's skirmishers after it retired to the eminence indicated.
After 3 p.m. June 26, only a few shots were fired by sharpshooters, and at 3.30 a.m. on the 27th, the enemy again commenced picket firing. At daylight I received orders to move via Fairfield, Wartrace, Roseville, and Normandy to Tullahoma. As my brigade was moving off, Captain Darden's battery fired several rounds at a small squad of cavalry which appeared at about 1,000 yards distant, and then joined our movement, having fired at Hoover's Gap and vicinity 147 rounds of fixed ammunition, viz, 132 of shell and 15 of round shot. My brigade, preceded by the Twentieth Tennessee Regiment, attached to it for the time, moved deliberately and quietly in rear of the division, and arrived at Tullahoma, without any further skirmishing with the enemy, at 7 p.m. June 27.
On the 28th, 29th, and until about 4 p.m. on June 30, my brigade remained at Tullahoma. The last two days it was formed in line of battle on the right of the McMinnville road and in rear of General Brown's brigade, and had heavy details engaged in working on the defenses at that place.
At about 4 p.m. on June 30, my brigade, by order of Lieutenant General Hardee, and guided by Captain [G. M.] Helm, of the Engineers, took position to the right and rear of our defenses, about 5 miles southeast of Tullahoma, at the junction of the Manchester and Winchester road with a road approaching the Chattanooga Railroad from direction of Hillsborough. I found here at dusk in the evening Brigadier-General Martin with a cavalry force, who informed me that a regiment of Federal infantry had passed toward Manchester about one hour before my arrival. The road furnished indications that infantry had been passing, and information to that effect was gathered from citizens. My brigade rested in line of battle
across the Manchester and in rear of the Hillsborough road, with cavalry pickets from Brigadier-General Wharton's command in my front and on my flanks. Generals Wharton and Martin rested in my vicinity during the night.
At dawn on the morning of July 1, my brigade, under orders, through Captain Helm, from Lieutenant-General Hardee, left the cavalry in its rear and moved toward Decherd. It crossed Elk River by the Bethpage Bridge, and rested about 1 mile south, near the house of Mr. Corn, from 8 a.m. until about 4 p.m.; then it moved across the Bethpage Bridge, and was placed in line of battle about 1 ½ miles in front of it, to support, under command of Major-General Cleburne, Brigadier-General Churchill's brigade. The enemy fired a few shots from their artillery, which passed over my command. My brigade then moved to the left en echelon to Brig adier-General Churchill's brigade. At dark my brigade again crossed the Bethpage Bridge, received orders to reduce the baggage at Decherd to 800 pounds per wagon, and rested during the night near Mr. Corn's, about 6 miles from Decherd.
On Thursday morning (July 2), my brigade moved back to the Bethpage Bridge, and passed up to the intersection of the Hillsborough and the Bethpage and Brakefield Point roads, about 3 miles from the bridge. After placing my brigade in position across the former road, I sent, by order of Major-General Stewart, the Twenty-fifth Tennessee to join the Twenty-sixth Tennessee Regiment, of General Bate's command, and to <ar34_609> support the cavalry under General Martin at Morris' Ford, on the Hillsborough road. The Twenty-fifth was detached about two hours and a half, and occupied two positions near the ford, both out of line of the enemy's fire. A section of Darden's battery was moved up to Morris' Ford at the same time with the Twenty-fifth, and took position 250 or 300 yards on the left of the Hillsborough road, on the bank of the river. The opposite bank, as far as could be seen along the river and for 200 yards back from the stream, was covered with woods, in which the enemy's cavalry and perhaps a section of artillery were posted. Brigadier-General Martin's cavalry brigade were stretched along the southern bank of the stream and were skirmishing with the enemy, exposed to occasional discharges of canister, shell, and shot. The section of Darden's battery opened on the enemy at from 250 to 300 yards. It fired first at the position of the enemy's artillery pointed out by General Martin, and then shelled the woods. The enemy commenced falling back at the first shot, and by the time the sixth shot was fired their cavalry had gained the lane bordered by wide fields beyond the woods, along which they moved in column, presenting an admirable mark for our artillery, and one upon which every shell seemed to take effect. They were thrown into great confusion, and many loose horses were seen running away without their riders. The artillery retired through the fields under cover.
Far up the lane a wagon train was seen, extending into the woods beyond. They may have been ambulances or a pontoon train. Drivers attempted to turn and move off, but one or two shells exploded among them and produced the wildest confusion. The fleeing cavalry and teams became all mingled together. Gradually the lane was, however, cleared.
The loss of the enemy here is supposed to have been quite large, and recent reports, through Northern papers, confirm this impression. Captain Darden here fired 48 rounds of shell, making a total of 195 rounds fired at Hoover's Gap and [during] the evacuation of Middle Tennessee.
Under General Stewart's immediate order, the brigade, with the Twenty-sixth Tennessee Regiment, under Colonel [John M.]Lillard, moved about 11 a.m. from this position nearly up to Brake field Point. About 2 p.m. I was ordered to move back my brigade, with the Twenty-sixth Tennessee Regiment, to the intersection of the Hillsborough with the Bethpage and Brakefield Point road, and to detain in position the Twentieth Tennessee Regiment, which had been left on the road south of Bethpage Bridge. The Twentieth Tennessee Regiment arrived just at the moment I started to comply with this order, and upon application of the colonel (T. B. Smith) it was suffered by Major-General Stewart to remain behind, with the orders to move in case of any action on the part of my command.
Upon my advance, I found General Martin's cavalry had fallen back to the intersection of the roads which I was ordered to occupy, and I formed my command about 1 mile in rear, across the Brakefield road, and threw forward the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment and a section of Darden's battery to within about 1,000 yards of the intersection of the roads. We remained in this position perhaps one hour, during which the skirmishing of our cavalry at the intersection of the roads grew pretty warm, and Brigadier-General Wharton came up from toward Cowan with a large re-enforcement of cavalry, with which I had requested him to occupy the ground on that side. I received orders to retire just as Major-General Wheeler came upon the field. My command, including the Twentieth and Twenty-sixth Tennessee Regiments, moved,« 39 R R---VOL XXIII, PT 1» <ar34_610> with the Seventeenth in rear, to the foot of the mountains, and rested for the night.
On July 3 and 4, my brigade continued in rear of the troops (Hardee's corps), marching on the road which passes by University Place. The Seventeenth moved in rear of the brigade on the 3d, and the Twentieth on the 4th of July, quietly and without being threatened by the enemy· The Twenty-sixth Tennessee Regiment rejoined General Brown's brigade on July 3.
On the night of July 4, we bivouacked on Battle Creek. On July 5 and 6, the brigades of Generals Clayton and Liddell occupied in succession the position of rear guard·
On July 6, the infantry, artillery, ambulance, and ambulance train of my brigade passed the Tennessee River on the pontoon bridge at Kelly's Ferry in three-quarters of an hour, and bivouacked in the afternoon at Wauhatchie Station, on the Nashville and Chattanooga Railroad. Here the movement, which will probably be known as the Evacuation of Middle Tennessee, terminated.
As I have not communicated with the officers commanding the Twentieth and Twenty-sixth Tennessee Regiments, or with those commanding the sections of the Eufaula, Maney's, or Dawson's battery since they left my command, I can only report from observation and unofficial information the part they took in the movement while connected with my command. I may make omissions in regard to them, which will no doubt be supplied by the commanders of the brigades to which they were attached.
The list of casualties in my brigade was forwarded on the 10th instant. I submit the following recapitulation: O Officers. A Aggregate M Enlisted Men.C Captured or missing --Killed-- -Wounded- -----C-----:
Command. O M O M O M A
The number of officers and men who were left in Middle Tennessee by desertion and otherwise, and have not yet returned, are as follows:
Command. Officers. Men.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant.
R. A. HATCHER,
Originally Extracted from The Appomattox Roster
by R. A. Brock Published in 1887
Transcribed by Linda Rives
Fanning, B. F., 1st Serg’t., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Manly, H. H., 2d Serg’t., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Stiles, James., 3d Serg’t., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Ayers, Powell, Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Bomar, J. B., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Curran, T. J., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Donaldson, J. W., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Doldy, W. R., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Haggard, A. L., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Land, J. G., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Taylor, T. C., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Lintrell, James, Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Luckey, P. P., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
McElyead, H. P., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Norman, Wm., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Seaton, A. J., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Snow, W. H., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Shriver, J. G., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Tripp, J. H., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Tripp. T. M., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Williams, J. J., Pvt., Co. A., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Kimes, S. H., Serg’t., Co. B., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Spencer, J. F., Corp’l., Co. B., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
McGuire, W. H., one horse, Pvt., Co. B., 44th Tenn.
Stephenson, J. C., Pvt., Co. B., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Vickers, John, Pvt., Co. B., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Wade, W. A., Pvt., Co. B., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Walker, S. W., Pvt, Co. B., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Turner, M. J., Serg’t., Co. C., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Barton. W. J., Pvt., Co. C., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Biber, L. F., Pvt., Co. C., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Lyons, A. T., Pvt., Co. C., 44th Tenn. Reg’t
Kemp, Allen, Pvt., Co. C., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Sharpe, Wm., Pvt., Co D., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Templeton, J. W., Pvt., Co. D., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Blackburn, J. W., Pvt., Co. D., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Swanner, O. B. R., Pvt., Co. F., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Hughey, W. H., Pvt., Co. F., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Story, F. M., Pvt., Co. F., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Story, M. E., Pvt., Co. F., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Majors, J. B., Pvt., Co. F., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Whilt, G. M., Pvt., Co. F., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Elirzeer, T. J., Pvt., Co. H., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Kelly, Daniel, Pvt., Co. H., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Cunningham, J. H., 3d Serg’t., Co. I., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Dunlop, T. C., Serg’t., Co. I., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Hagan, J. H., Pvt., Co. I., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Hough, A. J., Pvt., Co. I., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
May, B. F., Pvt., Co. I., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Marshall, Wm., Mus’n., Co. K., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Stratton, Bailey, Pvt., Co. K., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Tolliver, R., Pvt., Co. K., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
Phillips, John, Pvt., Co. K., 44th Tenn. Reg’t.
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FORTY-FOURTH TENNESSEE REGIMENT
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44th Infantry Regiment, organized at Camp Trousdale, Tennessee, in December, 1861, contained men from Coffee, Grundy, Franklin, Lincoln, and Bedford counties. The unit fought at Shiloh and lost seventy-four percent of the 470 engaged. On April 19, 1862, the 55th (McKoin's) Regiment, which also suffered heavy losses, merged into the 44th. It now had a force of 489 effectives. After fighting at Munfordville and Perryville it was assigned to General B.R. Johnson's Brigade, Army of Tennessee. During November, 1863, the unit was consolidated with the 25th Regiment. It participated in the Battles of Murfreesboro and Chickamauga, was active in the Knoxville Campaign, then joined the Army of Northern Virginia. The regiment went on to fight at Drewry's Bluff, was active in the Petersburg trenches north of the James River, and ended the war at Appomattox. It lost thirty-four percent of the 509 engaged at Murfreesboro and thirty-eight percent of the 294 at Chickamauga. The 25th/44th sustained 95 casualties of the 259 at Drewry's Bluff. This regiment, attached to General McComb's Brigade, surrendered 5 officers and 53 men. The field officers were Colonels John S. Fulton, John H. Kelly, and Coleman A. McDaniel; Lieutenant Colonels John L. McEwen, Jr. and Henry S. Shied; and Majors Gibson M. Crawford, Henry C. Ewin, and James M. Johnson.
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44th TN Infantry Regiment
The following history is taken from
John Berrian Lindsley's "Military
Annals of Tennessee (Confederate)", originally
published in 1886.
Lindsley, a prominent Nashville educator, spent several years soliciting, compiling, and editing histories of every Tennessee Confederate artillery, cavalry, and infantry regiment he could identify. Because he was dependent on the contributions of surviving members of the various units for any information other than what could be gleaned from official records, the quality and quantity of information varies widely from regiment to regiment. Lindsley's "Annals" have long been considered a preeminent source of information on Tennessee Confederates. The history of 44th Regiment as reproduced below was written by Dr. D. J. Noblitt of Lincoln County, a surgeon who served with the 44th throughout the war.
In the fall of 1861 Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston was assigned the department of Tennessee; finding his lines poorly prepared for defensive or aggressive war, and to remedy this deficiency, he called on the Governors of the neighboring States for troops. Under this call many regiments were organized-the Forty-fourth one of that number, being from the counties of Bedford, Franklin, Grundy, Coffee, and Lincoln. Their regimental organization was completed at Camp Trousdale on the 9th of December, 1861, as follows: C. A. McDaniel, of Lincoln county, Colonel; Henry Sheid, of Coffee, Lieutenant-colonel; Matt Johnston, of Bedford, Major; Dr. John Gannaway, Surgeon; Dr. D. J. Noblitt, Assistant Surgeon; Hugh Edins, Quartermaster; Polk Green, Commissary. For a few days the regiment remained in camp drilling, and was then ordered to Bowling Green, Ky., and assigned to Col. S. A. M. Wood's brigade, Hardee's division. Early in February it was obvious to the most casual observer that Gen. Johnston would be compelled to double his forces or shorten his lines - Thomas flanking on the right by meeting and defeating Gen. Zollicoffer at or near Mill Springs, Ky. ' In that engagement Zollicoffer fell mortally wounded, and into the hands of the enemy, who are said to have treated his remains with great indignity. His fall demoralized his command. Gen. Zollicoffer was one of the most brilliant men of the State - his learning and gallantry enrolled him in the affections of his countrymen as a military hero. Gen. Grant was moving with superior forces on our lines at Forts Henry and Donelson.
On or by the first of February it had been discovered by Gen. Johnston that Gen. Buell, in our front, was moving his troops in the direction of Donelson, in support of Grant. To checkmate this he sent Gens. Floyd and Buckner's command to Gen. Pillow's support. In the meantime Fort Henry was captured by the enemy. A concentration upon Donelson was now evident - our lines being broken on both flanks. On the llth of February the remainder of the army received orders to make the necessary preparations for the evacuation of Bowling Green by sending the sick South and issuing rations for a march. The march was continued from day to day until we arrived at Nashville. Snow was encountered at Franklin, Ky. Notwithstanding snow and cold weather, the line of march was taken up in the morning, and getting several miles into the State of Tennessee another order was issued to cook rations. Accompanying this order was the announcement that the Confederates had repulsed the Federals with great loss at Donelson. The march was continued, and occasionally we heard the firing of cannon said to be at Donelson. On the road-side, in many places, and at houses were to be seen anxious and distressed women who had sons, brothers or husbands in that stirring conflict. Late in the evening, near Goodlettsville, the army was thrown into line of battle with the assurance of an instant attack. It was a false alarm - no enemy appearing.
Sunday morning (16th) moved early in consequence of the favorable reports on tne day before; was in splendid spirits until met by a courier with the intelligence of the fall of Donelson. He had dispatches from Gen. Johnston to Gen. Breckinridge informing him of the disaster, and urging him to push on with his column.
On entering Edgefield sorrow and despair were unmistakably written on every face. There was great difficulty experienced in crossing the bridge into Nashville, only a limited number crossing at a time, necessarily making it slow. This gave rise to every sort of rumor that would arouse anxiety and fear. This precaution was necessary to prevent a general rush on the suspension bridge of panic-stricken soldiers, who would, if left at will, have crowded upon it in sufficient numbers to have forced this fine structure from its giant pillars with great disaster to the retreating army.
The arrival of the army seemed to demoralize the already panic-stricken city. The officials-State and city-were wild; some were speaking, some crying, some cursing, some praying, while others were running to and fro, scarcely knowing what to do. The hospitals were deserted by all that could get away; the sick, lame, and halt were seen on every southern outlet from the city, and for many miles south of Nashville the barns and outhouses were the recipients of sick, wounded, and tired soldiers.
Arriving in the city late at night no halt was made, but we marched out on the Murfreesboro pike in the Mill Creek neigborhood. Rain commenced, and our camp became untenable. Orders were issued to repair to a better camp and cook eight days rations. The latter order was severely criticised by the men, and they threatened to mutiny if not allowed to meet the enemy; but this spirit was overcome by speeches from Gens. Pillow, Floyd, and Hardee.
The next morning the retreat was resumed for Murfreesboro; but early that day rumor said Beauregard had taken Cairo and Paducah, and Jos. E. Johnston Washington, and that we would fall back to Murfreesboro, and possibly to Decatur, Ala.; that Beauregard would ascend the Cumberland, J. E. Johnston would make his way through Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Kentucky in support of Beauregard, and Albert Sidney Johnston would attack Grant, Buell, and Thomas in detail; with these armies in their rear the Federal armies would be defeated and captured, closing out the war in six months. Around camp-fires at night this was discussed with great earnestness, and claimed a master-stroke of military strategy.
For a few days the army camped at Murfreesboro, resting, reorganizing, gathering up the sick, and those escaping capture at Donelson, and all the recruits that could be induced to volunteer. The Forty-fourth, with Wood's brigade, was assigned to Pillow's division, Hardee's corps. The retreat was continued south by way of Shelbyville and Fayetteville, Tenn., via Decatur. An order was received from the seat of government suspending Pillow. The command was temporarily assumed by Gen. Hindman, of Arkansas. We continued the march and arrived at Corinth, Miss., on March 20, 1862 - the point selected by Gen. A. S. Johnston for concentrating his army. He determined to engage the enemy that he might defeat him in detail, as it had been learned that Grant was being reinforced by Halleck from St. Louis, and Buell was making forced marches through Middle Tennessee to join Grant at Pittsburg Landing on the Tennessee River.
On the 3d of April a general order was issued, directing the troops to prepare five days rations and forty rounds of cartridges. In the evening the regiment left camp, marching until midnight in the direction of the river. Early next morning the march was resumed, and continued until late in the evening, taking position in line of battle about one mile northeast of the Mickey house. We had scarcely arrived in position when the rapid discharge of small arms, and two or three shots from a field piece, was heard but a few hundred yards in advance. The regiment stood for half an hour or more in a drenching rain, expecting an order to advance, but was somewhat relieved by seeing a Federal Lieutenant-colonel and fifty of his men marched to the rear as prisoners, captured by Col. Clanton's cavalrv of Alabama. and the Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment of infantry. At night the regiment was ordered to sleep on their arms. Next morning at day-break the regiment was aroused for duty, every moment expecting an attack. During the day we were advanced about one-fourth of a mile, and kept in line all day. The dense undergrowth and well-guarded lines concealed our proximity from the enemy, until they were attacked by Hardcastle's battalion on Sunday morning, the regiment promptly following them into the Federal encampment, a short distance east of Shiloh Church, surprising and capturing them while cooking breakfast. They made a stubborn resistance for awhile, yet the Confederate line pressed upon them, driving them back with heavy loss on both sides.
The entire Confederate front was engaged early in the day driving the Federals toward the river. Between eleven and twelve o'clock the enemy made such stubborn resistance that the reserves under Gen. Breekinridge were ordered in, when the enemy were again driven back. An advance along the entire Confederate line was ordered. About three o'clock in the afternoon an Arkansas regiment was thrown into confusion. Gen. Johnston, observing the disorder, sprung to their colors, held them aloft, and said, "Forward, my men!" They rallied to the charge, with heavy loss of men, and Gen. Johnston mortally wounded. The fall of this noble man stopped the farther advance of the Confederates, and many believe affected the result of the war. Gen. Beauregard, assuming command, being next in rank, changed the order of battle by using shot and shell in place of small arms. The result was not as he hoped. The demoralized Federals, in place of surrendering, rallied at the hesitancy of the Confederates and the prospect of reinforcements from Gen. Buell on the north side of the river.
Late in the evening Gen. Lew. Wallace's division was thrown into line of battle, having crossed the river. Early on the morning of the 7th they attacked the Confederates with great determination, driving them at every point. The Confederates fell back on the Mickey house and formed. The Federals appeared to be satisfied in regaining the lost ground of the day before, and left the Confederates to fall back at will to Corinth. The Forty-fourth went into battle with four hundred and seventy men in line. On Tuesday morning, at roll-call, one hundred and twenty answered to their names. It did as gallant service as any command on that field.
The Mickey house had been selected by Dr. Cross as hospital head-quarters for our brigade. By his order tents had been erected for the comfort and protection of the wounded in the yard. After examining wounds and temporarily dressing them on the field, Dr. Noblitt, aided by Dr. Chandler, had succeeded on Monday morning in transferring their wounded from the field to the Mickey house, and as comfortably quartered as could be expected with the surroundings. Rain fell Sunday night. About two o'clock p.m. Monday there was a ruinous stampede among the wagon and ambulance men, and was not fully quieted until night. It happened that a man came riding at full speed among the trains, crying, "Take care of yourselves! The Yankee cavalry has broken our lines, and will be on you in a minute!" Many of the drivers took one horse or a mule, and made all possible speed to Corinth. Others drove to the Mickey house and unloaded the wounded on the ground, without tent or fly. The ground was covered with the wounded, the dead, and the dying. After dark the rain fell in torrents upon hundreds of the poor fellows. Their agonizing cries, moans, and prayers for help and water were audible above the dashing rain and rolling thunder. But in the long night-watch the rain ceased, the thunder hushed, and so had the cries of the suffering in the stillness of death. Morning came, and with it a melancholy sight - a sleeping camp. Men lay in every possible posture, with eyes closed as if in sleep on crimson beds. The rain had washed the blood from their clothes and blankets, making the earth red.
Drs. Cross, Lawrence, and Noblitt worked all night attending the different calls and operating. Neither of them had slept for more than forty-eight hours. Late Monday evening it was understood that the hospitals and wounded would be surrendered on Tuesday morning. Dr. Noblitt succeeded in securing wagons to carry sixty-five wounded and one dead (Lieut. Patterson) to Corinth.
The following is a list of the killed- Bedford county Co.-R. J. George, J. C. Bates, T. S. Rhoten, D. C. Frizzell; Lincoln county Co.-W. B. Marler, J. T. Spencer, jr., W. M. Spencer, W. H. Whitworth, S. A. Mitchell, A. M. Collins, Lieut. L. M. Patterson, L. C. Hardin, J. F. Hatlicock; Coffee county Co.-W. M. McCullough, W. H. Pulley, Allen Bynurn. Badly wounded: W. A. Bates, W. S. Moore, died at the hospital; J. A. Pamplyer, B. E. Spencer, James Hampton, G. A. McKinney, died at Corinth; Lieut. N. P. Norton, Joe Tillman, died at Holly Springs; J. F. Ferriss, died in camp at Corinth; A. J. Lamberton, shot through the right lung, and fought for an hour or more, until be fainted, and was afterward killed at Chickamauga; James Yates, W. C. Jennings, A. J. Radacine, Jasper Williams (died); Col. McDaniel was severely wounded on Sunday, but continued with his men in both days engagements; W. A. Loyd, J. W. George, J. F. Russell, E. B. Norvell, J. F. Rhoten, F. 0. Shriver, H. Manley, R. F. Smith (died), T. J. Kimes (died), Y. J. Smith, E. M. Crouch, K. Call, Lieut. J. C. Haley, James Coats (died), T. C. Taylor, D. Q. George, J. H. Call. Slightly wounded: H. H. Colter, D. H. Call, M. C. Eslick, S. H. Kimes, J. D. Stone, A. M. Spencer, B. E. Spencer-the two latter were on a visit to the regiment, and secured guns, fighting gallantly, B. E. Spencer losing an arm; J. H. Oglevie, H. H. Hampton, J. W. Hampton, W. J. Harris (afterward drowned), M. M. Storey, J. W. Gill, Jas. N. Sawyers, R. Bailey, T. J. Loveless, A. Tucker, M. Jarrett, R. C. Robertson, Wm. Brown, Jas. Earles, B. F. Cass, Harvey McGuire, C. MeCree, R. B. Eakin, J. B. Majors, M. J. Smith, D. H. McKinney, Lieut. Goodloe, Lieut. Bratton, H. C. Bass, W. M. Wood, R. S. Adcock, Capt. Brannori, W. C. Radacine, R. L. McGehee, Lieut. J. A. Dollins, W. F. McDaniel. Over one-fifth of the number engaged received wounds or were killed.
The battle of Shiloh was disastrous to the Tennessee troops. It was necessary to reorganize all the Tennessee commands. Cut off from the State, nothing in the line of recruiting could be done. In pursuance of that fact, the Fifty-fifth Tennessee Regiment, having been organized in November previous, from the counties of Davidson, Williamson, Smith, Bedford, and Lincoln, by the election of - McCoen, of Williamson county, as Colonel; Wiley M. Reed, of Nashville, Lieutenant-colonel; - Jones, of Smith county, Major; Dr. Dugan, of Bedford county, Surgeon; and Dr. Waller, of Rutherford county, Assistant Surgeon. The casualties of this regiment were so heavy that it had not the minimum numbers to preserve its organization, and it was therefore consolidated with the Forty-fourth, taking its number. Among its killed at Shiloh were James May and Napoleon B. Hyde, of Nashville, two as gallant young men as ever shouldered a musket. E. D. Richards was also badly wounded. Col.McCoen was placed on the superannuated list, and Col. Reed on the supernumerary, acting for awhile as Provost Marsbal, and afterward assigned to duty on Gen.Forrest's staff. He fell mortally wounded in a gallant charge on Fort Pillow, on December 31st, 1862. Col. Reed was one of the bravest of men, and a Christian. He was pastor of the First Cumberland Presbyterian Church, of Nashville, and left the pulpit for the army. Col. McDaniel, whose health was wretched, was advised by his medical staff to resign, but refused until after the battle of Shiloh. Lieut.-col. Sheid was placed on the supernumerary list. Maj. Johnson was discharged on account of paralysis.
Gen. Hardee appointed Col. Kelly, of Arkansas, to the command, who served a short time, and was succeeded by the election of John A. Fulton, of Lincoln county, as Colonel; John L. McEwen, of Williamson county, Lieutenant-colonel; William Ewing, of Davidson county, Major; R. G. Cross, of Nashville, Adjutant. Drs. John Gannaway and D. J. Noblitt were continued on the medical staff; assisted by Drs. Davis, Osborne, and Templeton.
J. W. Franklin died in camp on the 27th.
On the 29th of April the army retreated from Corinth to Tupelo. Joshua Phillips, of Smith county, was discharged on account of wounds received.
On June 30, 1862, Gen. Beauregard was relieved, and Gen. Braxton Bragg was assigned to the command. On the 10th of July an accident befell three men of Co. A bv the discharge of a gun, wounding J. B. Rhoten, A. R. Ray, and N. T. Bowden-the latter dying.
On July 20 Mr. Harper, of Co. B (Wilson county), and Mr. Cooper, of Co. I (Smith county), died of typhoid fever. On July 25th J. D. Johnston, of Capt. Jackson's company (formerly Wiley M. Reed's), died of sunstroke.
On the 27th of July the command was transferred to Chattanooga. None but those that have been soldiers can appreciate the joy with which the soldiers, minds were filled at the prospect of driving the enemy from and regaining their homes. Many had not seen or heard any thing from their friends or families for more than six months. While en route a collision occurred near West Point, fatally wounding M. L. Smith, of Co. F. We arrived at Chickamauga Station August 30th. At Chattanooga Gen. Buckner was placed in command of our division. Dr. Noblitt was offered promotion, but declined it, preferring to remain with his regiment.
On the 28th of August we broke up camp near Chattanooga, and moved northwest, across Walden's Ridge, then up the Sequatchie Valley to Dunlap, thence across the mountain by Spencer and Sparta to Glasgow, Ky. The command arrived at Glasgow on September 13, rested two days, and left on the Cave City road. The writer remained with the sick. After properly attending to them we overtook the command near Woodsonville, where Gen. Chalmers committed his great blunder.
On the 16th Gen. Bragg environed the town and fortifications of Munfordsville with his army, and demanded its surrender unconditionally. Col. Wilder at first refused. Late in the afternoon he asked for an armistice, and at midnight the terms of surrender were settled. At six o'clock the next morning the enemy laid down their arms-about five thousand. Left Munfordsville on the 20th for Bardstown, passing through Hodgensville and New Haven.
We left Bardstown for Perryville, and halted here on the 7th of October, taking position in line of battle on the hills north of the town. Our rear skirmished all day with the Federal advance. Late in the evening some close fighting occurred, and a few prisoners were captured. On the morning of the 8th the Federals advanced cautiously in column; skirmishing with their cavalry and Confederate pickets up to 12 o'clock. Between that and 2 o'clock an artillery duel was fought by Darden's Confederate and a Federal battery. This lasted some two hours, when the Confederates were ordered to deploy by regiments to the attack, which command was executed in splendid order and fearful effect upon the Federals. Federal officers have often remarked to the writer that the deploying of the Confederate regiments was the grandest militarv display they ever beheld. There has never been an army of better discipline and spirit than Gen. Bragg had in that campaign; and for the time it lasted and numbers engaged there has never been a fiercer engagement than the battle of Perryville. The losses were heavy on both sides. The Federal loss was fully twice that of the Confederate. The Confederate loss was in all not above twenty-five hundred. The Federal surgeons often remarked to the writer that their loss was between five and seven thousand. The Confederate forces engaged were Cheatham's and Buckner's divisions and Anderson's brigade, of Stewart's division. Cheatham's division sustained the heaviest loss-Donelson's, Maney's, and Stewart's brigades-all Tennesseans except two regiments, Forty-fifth Georgia and Ninth Texas. Cheatham fought on our right,Buckner in the center,and Anderson on the left. The Chaplin hills were made red with Tennessee blood. The Forty-fourth Regiment had forty-two killed and wounded, thirteen being killed upon the field in front of the burning barn (Bottom's barn). It was quite a victorv to the Confederates. They slept upon their arms on the field, and retreated earlv next morning.
The writer remained at the Prewitt house with the wounded that were not able to be moved. About 4 o'clock on the 9th the Federal advance came to the hospital. Their treatment was uniformly kind. Captain Harrison, a grandson of President Harrison, was generous, brave, kind, noble, and honorable, doing all be could to alleviate the suffering of the unfortunate. There were ten Federals and nine Confederates in this house, all badly wounded, not one being able to hand water to the other. None but the Surgeon was left in charge to wait on them. He reported the condition to Gens. Steadman and Thomas, who visited the hospital. Gen. Steadman soon had all that was necessary for comfort and assistance. Harrison called at the hospital each day while at Perryville, to make prison life as pleasant as possible.
The killed and wounded are as follows. Co. B-Killed: Corp. M. M. Hague; wounded: privates J. F. Floyd, Ben Marshall. Co. C-Wounded: G. Butler, J. C. Cowen (severely). Co. D-Killed: private Wm. Mays; wounded: W. B. Norton-arm amputated, and be retreated with the army to Knoxville rather than remain a prisoner; W. M. Griffin, wounded in the shoulder-joint-the operation of resection saved his arm and life. Co. F-Killed: Privates W. T. Parris, J. M. Rhise, W. W. Eaks, F. M. James, Thos. McCall; wounded: E. K. Shannon, S. M. Williams. Co. F-Killed: Capt. Joel J. Jones, Lieut. S. W. Burdwell, privates W. A. Hammans (or Hammond), A. R. Ray; mortally wounded: T. J. O'Neal, G. S. Marcom, W. D. Gill, J. D. Harris; severely wounded: G. W. Davis, W. M. Brody, slightly wounded: G. W. Summers, B. Y. Holland, F. M. Barnes, James M. Goodwin, W. H. Gibbs, D. H. McKinney. Co. G--Killed: N. J. Dozier, W. M. King, A. M. Lovelass. Co. K - Mortally wounded: A. Kirkpatrick; severely: J. R. Tooly, L. D. Higgerson; T. K. Price and Dan Duncan both lost a leg, and have both been elected to office in Coffee county since the war. Co. I-Severely wounded: G. Hill.
E and F, being color companies, were heavy losers. The striking down or loss of the colors caused confusion and demoralization, consequently both armies made their best efforts at the colors. After the fall of Capt. Jones and Lieut. Burdwell, the command of the two companies fell upon Lieut. John Y. Gill, of Co. E. He commanded them with such success and gallantry that Col. Fulton and Gen. B. R. Johnson publielv complimented him for gallantry and the skillful maneuvering of his men on the field of battle.
Capt. Joel J. Jones was a model Tennessean - a man that any State or country might feel proud to honor. At the time of his death he was a member of tile Tennessee Legislature, representing the counties of Franklin, Lincoln, and Marshall in the Senate. Four days after the bloody conflict Elder Marcum died of wounds through the right arm and abdomen. He was a member of Capt. Jones's company (F). Elder Marcum was a pious Christian, a member of the Primitive Baptist Church.
The retreat from Perryville was one of fearful suffering. Lieut. Kelsoe was detailed to the command of the barefooted men of the brigade (two hundred and two), and sent out as wagon-guard. We were ordered to draw ten days rations and march to Knoxville by way of Cumberland Gap. We failed to draw the ten days rations, as we did not overtake any provision-wagons and those we guarded were filled with ordnance. For ten days we had nothing to eat save what we could find on tile march. As that was through a mountainous and sparsely settled country, and it had been ravaged by both armies before our retreat, the few people that lived on the line had left. The armies preceding us had not left them a living. We were seven days without bread, much of that time without meat also. Our food was a few grains of parched corn and water.
On Thursday evening, September 19, 1863, near Ringgold, Ga., the Forty-fourth Regiment, with the remainder of Johnston's brigade, engaged the Federal cavalry. Early Friday morning we encountered them again, driving them all day. The next day at ten o'clock we engaged their infantry, which was stubbornly resisted. Capt. Rogan, of Co. I, fell mortally wounded early in the day. The engagement was close and hard all day. We camped in line on the field. Early Sunday morning we were ordered to charge the enemy, which was executed with terrible effect, driving the enemy one mile and a half with great slaughter before they were able to make a stand. The rest of the day was consumed on that line in taking and retaking a battery. It was taken three times. Just at night Capt. Terry, of the Seventeenth Reginient, ordered a detail of men and moved one of the guns with the charging line, which was executed to the letter with glorious results, routing the enemy and capturing all their dead and wounded. The killed of Co. F were Win. Bearden, John Alerrill, Sergt. Alonzo Gill; wounded: Call Story, Will Gibbs, and Bob Bearden.
We remained a few weeks on Missionary Ridge before we
were assigned to Longstreet's corps. Were with him at the siege of
Knoxville and the battle of Bean's Station all of which was amid much
suffering from cold and the hardships incidental to a winter campaign,
until we went into winter-quarters at Morristown, East Tennessee.
Reports from the Official Records about the 44th Tennessee Consolidated Infantry for 1863
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XX/1 [S# 29]
DECEMBER 26, 1862-JANUARY 5, 1863.
--The Stone's River or Murfreesborough, Tenn., Campaign.
No. 271.--Report of Col. John S. Fulton, Forty-fourth Tennessee Infantry[ar29_892 con't]
The brigade was formed in line of battle by daylight on the morning of the 31st ultimo; the Forty fourth, occupying its position next on the right, marched from its encampment through a corn-field. When approaching a thicket, the enemy opened a battery upon us in front of the Seventeenth Regiment, of same brigade, wounding some 3 men of my regiment. We advanced beyond the thicket through a corn-field, when <ar29_893> the brigade was halted, the right resting near a cedar thicket. Here a severe fire was opened upon us by the sharpshooters of the enemy, wounding several of our men and creating some little confusion. We here deployed a company as skirmishers, who soon drove back the enemy's sharpshooters, not, however, until they had wounded several field officers and many men. We then advanced and crossed the Old Franklin road into a cedar thicket, where we had a very severe engage merit, fighting some twenty minutes before the enemy gave way. Here our color-bearer was shot down, and Major Ewin was shot from his horse, and 8 company officers fell--1 killed and the others wounded. We then charged and drove the enemy through a woodland, they offering a stubborn resistance, until they approached a large corn-field. Here the enemy were routed, some going through the field and others on either side thereof. The Forty-fourth Regiment passed into the corn-field several hundred yards, then moved by the left flank and entered a woodland.
When the brigade reformed, and was resupplied with ammunition, it continued to move forward under the fire of the enemy's battery to our right, which firing was very heavy. After marching until we reached the cotton-field, we made a right half-wheel, facing toward the enemy's battery, advancing through the field in its direction. Having sent forward sharpshooters, the battery retired, our skirmishers doing good service, killing and wounding both horses and men. We pressed forward then through the woods, crossing the Nolensville road, moving by the left flank, and, passing through a small field, entered another woodland. Here the brigade, marching in line of battle, engaged the enemy in a cedar bough [brake]. The enemy fell back. We took 21 prisoners and pressed the enemy. We found that we were in advance of our line of battle, and that we were about to be flanked by them on our right in heavy force. One of the prisoners taken said that had we advanced 100 yards farther we would have been surrounded by an entire division in ambush and thus cut off. The Forty-fourth and Thirty-seventh were marched by the left flank and reunited with the balance of the brigade, which fell back, to avoid a flank movement of the enemy, to our own lines.
Under the direction of the general, the
brigade was reformed and ordered forward to support a portion of what I
supposed was McCown's division, already engaging the enemy. We marched
through a long piece of woods, entering a large corn-field, where we
found that the enemy had checked that portion of McCown's division,
which division was much scattered and disordered. Their officers were
endeavoring to rally and carry them forward. At this moment we reached
and passed them, passing a small house, and, crossing two fences, we
entered a cedar thicket, which was the strongest natural position we
encountered through the day, it being one of large ledges of rock of
very rugged formation, protected by a heavy-growth of cedar. Here we
engaged the enemy, driving him back over a fence. A portion of the
Forty-fourth crossed over the fence. It was at this juncture--the enemy
gradually falling back, stubbornly resisting our advance, and taking
advantage of the ground--that the troops on our right were found
suddenly to have broken and given back in confusion, without any
apparent cause. A mounted officer of that command, passing
Lieutenant-Colonel [John L.] McEwen, [jr.,] said that we were under a
heavy cross-fire and must retire. Consequently, being without support,
and the men witnessing the flight on our right, fell back in disorder,
in spite of the efforts of the officers present. <ar29_894>
In retiring, our loss was considerable, 2 officers and nearly 20 men. A general retreat took place. We fell back through the field a considerable distance into the woods, where, with great difficulty, the command was reformed at 4 p.m. The brigade remained in line of battle without any more fighting, under the fire of the enemy's artillery of long range.
It affords me pleasure to state that the officers and men of my command behaved with great gallantry, with the exception of a few persons who fled the field under the fire of the enemy, and whose names shall be reported for the consideration of the general.
JNO. S. FULTON,
R. B. SNOWDEN,
[P. S.]--A list of
the killed and wounded is also herewith submitted.(*)
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXX/2 [S# 51]
HEADQUARTERS JOHNSON'S BRIGADE,
SIR: I have to report the action taken with the enemy by the Forty-fourth, Twenty-fifth, Twenty-third, and Seventeenth Tennessee Regiments, composing this brigade, and Company E, of the Ninth Georgia Artillery Battalion (a battery of two howitzers and two small rifled pieces), commanded by First Lieut. W. S. Everett, in an affair at and from Ringgold to Chickamauga Creek, on the l7th and 18th instant, and at the battle of Chickamauga, on the 19th and 20th instant:
By order from Brigadier-General Johnson this brigade moved at 3 p.m. on 17th instant, from its encampment, 3 miles south of Ringgold, on the Ringgold and Dalton road, in the following order: Twenty-fifth, Forty-fourth, Twenty-third, and Seventeenth Tennessee Regiments. On our approaching Ringgold a supply train on its way to Ringgold had been reversed and was rapidly returning. At this juncture, I received an order from General B. R. Johnson to form the brigade in line of battle at the foot of Taylor's Ridge and throw forward skirmishers to hold Ringgold. The Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment being in front, took position on its right flank to protect the wagons rapidly moving to the rear. The brigade was formed in line of battle at the foot of Taylor's Ridge, the Forty-fourth and Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiments on the right of the road, Twenty-third and Seventeenth Tennessee Regiments on the left. A company from each regiment was sent in charge of Major Davis to hold Ringgold, with a detachment of Scott's cavalry on my flanks. A section of the battery was placed on my extreme right on elevated ground, where I ordered it to open upon the enemy's battery posted on the hill above and to the northwest of Ringgold, which had fired 2 shots into the town. After firing 8 rounds I dislodged the enemy, who was pursued by Colonel Scott's cavalry with a section of Everett's battery, 6 miles. He (Colonel Scott) having reached their encampment, a few rounds of grape and canister were fired among the enemy's camp fires, when Colonel Scott, with the section of artillery, retired.
The brigade rested on their arms in line of battle during the night. Rations were cooked and in haversacks by daylight on the morning of the 18th instant, when we took up line of march to Leet's Tan-yard. After marching a short distance the line of march was changed. The regiments countermarched and followed the enemy in the direction of Chattanooga, and having reached Peeler's (overshot) Mill we found that the enemy were near us. The brigade was formed in line of battle and skirmishers thrown forward, together with the left wing of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment, under General Forrest, followed by the right of that regiment, under Lieutenant-Colonel McEwen, jr. Lieutenant Everett fired a few rounds on the enemy, under direction of General Forrest. The skirmishers of the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment engaged the cavalry pickets of the enemy, killing 3 men and mortally wounding 1.
The enemy's skirmishers having been driven back, the Twenty-fifth, Twenty-third, and Seventeenth Regiments were moved forward, <ar51_472> crossing Pea Vine Creek some 600 yards from our first position into and over a corn-field, where these regiments were drawn up in line of battle. The enemy had taken his position in the corn-field opposite, running to a high ridge near the junction of the Graysville and La Fayette, Ringgold and Chattanooga roads. A section of the First Missouri Battery (Bledsoe's) having been placed in position on my left by Generals Johnson and Forrest, in rear of the Seventeenth Tennessee, the Forty-fourth was now brought to the right of the Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment. The firing from this battery drove the enemy from his position, and after shelling the woods in our front I again received an order to advance in line of battle.
My skirmishers were kept deployed at a distance of 200 yards, which distance they kept, passing over the ridge (a strong position) and forward to Reed's Bridge, across which the enemy had moved and taken position in the woods beyond. Before reaching the bridge (Reed's) the Seventeenth Tennessee was detached and sent by General Forrest to the left to attack a force of the Federals at their principal encampment. Before gaining this position, however, the enemy fled. The skirmishers of the Twenty-third Tennessee while approaching Reed's Bridge became engaged, and the Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment voluntarily pushed forward with a yell and drove the enemy from the bridge before it could be destroyed. Here the Twenty-third Tennessee had 5 men wounded, 1 of whom (Private A. Melton, color bearer), when obliged to give up his colors, called upon his successor to carry them forward ahead of everything else.
Skirmishers were immediately sent over the bridge and deployed, followed by the Forty-fourth, Twenty-fifth, and Twenty-third Tennessee Regiments, which filed to the right some 300 or 400 yards through a corn-field. The enemy now opened a battery upon the bridge, one of its shells wounding Lieutenant Hastings, of the Seventeenth Tennessee, which regiment was returning to rejoin the brigade and crossed over the bridge under the enemy's fire of artillery. A section of First Missouri (Bledsoe's) Battery, of the reserve artillery, opened fire and drove the enemy's battery from its position.
The brigade moved forward in line of battle, changing direction to the right, and moved in line to Alexander's Bridge, where we were halted and remained for brigade on our left (Gregg's) to come up. Gregg's brigade moved forward, followed by Johnson's, [from] which, after marching some 600 yards, the Forty-fourth Tennessee was detached to guard our wagon train. Having marched some 2½ miles by the flank, Gregg's brigade became engaged with the enemy. We changed front forward on left company, left battalion, amid moved up on line with other troops on our left, and rested on our arms during the night, one-third of the men being required to be awake and skirmishers deployed in our front.
Saturday, September 19, early this morning a detail of intelligent men was made, five from each regiment, to reconnoiter the enemy's line. They reported to me about 10 a.m. the enemy 1¼ miles distant and in our front. The Forty-fourth Tennessee took its position on the right of the brigade, and the line of the brigade conformed to that of Gregg's on our left, and Robertson's on our right, which encompassed the top of a low ridge. The firing commenced on our right about 8 a.m., and continued along the line until Cheatham became engaged.
About 1 p.m. the skirmishers of the Seventeenth Tennessee, as <ar51_473> well as those of Gregg's brigade, were driven in. A general engagement was now commenced on our left, the left companies of the Seventeenth Tennessee participating by firing obliquely to the left. At this time Everett's battery was placed behind the extreme left of the Seventeenth Tennessee, the fire of which drove the enemy back at this point.
Shortly after the command to move forward was given, the left regiment to touch to the right until we reached the road, when the right would move slowly, that the left may come up on the road, thus to change direction slightly to the right; but this order was not fully carried out. We did not advance exceeding 700 yards when the enemy opened fire upon us and we became hotly engaged. The enemy had planted a battery which struck about the center of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment, and which opened upon our advancing lines, throwing in rapid succession grape and canister, and supported by infantry, whose fire of small-arms was heavy, well-directed, and disastrous.
The entire brigade now became hotly engaged (during this engagement Major Lowe, of the Twenty-third Tennessee, was wounded), which lasted nearly an hour, the enemy making a stubborn resistance, gradually retiring, he having advantage of both undergrowth and ground, but finally was driven across the Chattanooga and La Fayette road. The Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, on approaching the road, was halted and opened fire on the enemy in its front, distant about 200 yards in a woodland. The undergrowth having been cut out, the enemy were in full view. The Forty-fourth Tennessee was still engaging the enemy. The Twenty-fifth and a portion of the Twenty-third Tennessee Regiments crossed the road (the other portion of the Twenty-third being with the Seventeenth Tennessee) and gained the cover of the woods and moved to the flank of the enemy's battery (still firing upon the right of our line) at right angles with my present line, gaining a fence, under which they opened fire. Delivering several volleys, [we] ceased firing, reloaded, and charged the battery, driving the enemy's gunners from their guns and killing several horses. The caissons were moved off by the enemy, leaving their pieces on the field. The Seventeenth Tennessee and the other portion of the Twenty-third Tennessee had crossed the road, having driven the enemy. The Seventeenth Tennessee here lost 1 officer killed, 2 officers and about 20 men wounded.
In this engagement the Forty-fourth Tennessee suffered heavily, sustaining a loss in killed and wounded.
A portion of Robertson's extreme left (Texans) and part of the Forty-fourth Tennessee had been driven back, but about two-thirds of the Forty-fourth Tennessee crossed the road.
Here Lieutenant-Colonel McEwen, jr., 5 company officers (Captain Jackson one of the number), and 50 men were wounded and 6 men killed, among the latter Sergt. T. A. Johnson, color bearer, one of the bravest of the brave. Lieutenant-Colonel McEwen, jr., however, remained with his command after he was wounded Until obliged to retire from exhaustion.
Lieutenant-Colonel Tillman, of the Forty-first Tennessee, Gregg's brigade, rode up to me at this time, stating that the enemy was moving down the road to my left and would soon be in my rear. Doubting the report, I suggested that our lines were connected on our left and that a flank or rear movement could not, therefore, be made by the enemy. I, however, found that but two regiments of <ar51_474> Gregg's brigade had moved up with my line, and they had retired. Lieutenant-Colonel Tillman had thus lost sight of his regiment, and in company with him and Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd I started to the road to satisfy myself as to the correctness of this report. I had gone but a short distance when I discovered a column of the.enemy moving by the flank in direction of the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, which rapidly gained its rear. I heard distinctly the commands "halt," "front," and immediately their fire was pouring upon our flank and rear. Here a general stampede ensued, so sudden and unexpected was the movement. We fell back 200 yards in rear of the Chattanooga and La Fayette road and reformed.
In this flank movement of the enemy, the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment lost 11 officers, including their gallant major (Davis), who was wounded, and about 60 men taken prisoners.
The brigade built temporary breastworks, behind which it remained during the night in line of battle. Our skirmishers, under Major McCarver, were directed to occupy the Chattanooga and La Fayette road, but this could not be done, the lines on my right and left not conforming thereto. I, however, instructed them to be posted within 50 yards of the road.
September 20.--This morning my line connected on
the right with McNair's (Gregg being in the next line in our rear) and
General Hindman's on the left. Everett's battery took position between
my left and the right of Hindman.
GO BACK TO THE TOP
About 10 a.m. a general advance was ordered. The left of the brigade had advanced but a short distance before it became engaged with the enemy, the battle having commenced some three hours earlier on the right. The Seventeenth Tennessee recrossed the Chattanooga and La Fayette road, where it engaged the enemy. The whole line crossing the fence, the engagement became general. Here we passed a house and garden and through an open field. It was here that Lieutenant-Colonel Ready, of the Twenty-third Tennessee, was wounded while rushing forward.
On entering the house, cribs, &c., many prisoners, both officers and men, were captured, and here some fine swords were taken from the enemy. Among the prisoners was the colonel of the One hundredth Illinois Regiment. The enemy's breastworks, which had been built at intervals along his line, offered but a poor assistance to the enemy to resist our advance, which was not only vigorous and spirited, but irresistible. We found he had a second line of breastworks, about 80 yards in rear of the first, made of logs and rocks, behind which they scarcely halted. Having driven the enemy from his first position, we halted and reformed our line in front of a dense, low, pine thicket. Pressing forward we carried this position, the dead of the enemy showing how good a protection he had calculated on. We passed through a stubble wheat-field to a ravine until we reached the edge of a long open field, the upper side of which being a bald hill or high ridge, upon which the enemy had a heavy battery of nine guns firing upon the advancing line on our right.
Without delay the field was entered and charged across, and the <ar51_475> ridge or bald hill was gained, the troops on our right having flanked and silenced the enemy's battery, which was captured. Everett's battery was immediately brought up, together with Dent's, which were opened upon the enemy's retreating wagon train, moving on the Chattanooga and Crawfish Spring road.
I sent forward skirmishers to reconnoiter the hollow beneath, where was found the enemy's telegraph running up the Chattanooga and Crawfish Spring road, several hundred yards to our right. This telegraph was cut down and several prisoners captured; among the prisoners a staff officer of Major-General Van Cleve and one of General Rosecrans' escort, with their horses and equipments. The effect of our batteries was fine, the enemy rapidly retreating.
A mounted officer was dispatched to the troops on our left (who had not kept pace with us) with a flag to show and direct them to our position. They had already opened one of their batteries upon our position, having taken us for the enemy. Their battery was playing upon us from the second hill on our left.
Having received orders to move to the hollow beneath, we here changed direction to the right, which threw the line almost perpendicular to the former. This done I marched forward, entering a corn-field. Here we began to see the fruits of our rapid and continuous movements. Three 12-pounder brass field pieces and three caissons were here captured, and nine 4-horse wagons, one of which, with 4 mules attached, was immediately sent to the rear. Three of these wagons were laden with ordnance, the others with commissary and quartermaster's stores. Some of the wagons were capsized, so utter was their confusion. I immediately found that my left flank was exposed and sent forward a heavy line of skirmishers to cover both my left flank and front, and advanced the brigade to the hillside and there halted. I also sent forward a party to reconnoiter the front in advance of the line of skirmishers, who, after absence of an hour, reported the enemy about 1 ½ miles distant and advancing.
In the meantime, I had learned of the enemy having skirmishers, or that occasional shots were fired from the hill on my left, running almost at right angles with the one on which I was then resting. I sent immediately a company of skirmishers to reconnoiter the hill. A few prisoners were brought in.
In the corner of the field below my present position was the Vidito house, where the enemy had practiced many outrages. The ladies were found lying under the floor of the house, and when they saw the enemy retreating and our line advancing they broke from their concealment, shouting and clapping their hands for joy.
A delay of an hour occurred While waiting the movement of some troops to our left, under orders from General B. R. Johnson. During this time, however, a portion of Dent's and Everett's batteries were placed in position in front of the brigade, and we replenished our cartridge boxes from the enemy's three wagons laden with ordnance, which had been captured here.
Between 1 and 2 p.m. I advanced to the top of the hill, when we were again upon the enemy, who opened a heavy fire upon us. Our batteries and small-arms here were engaging the enemy some fifteen minutes, when our line fell back some 15 paces under cover of the hill, Gregg's command on my right, giving back at the same time, this no doubt having started the backward movement. Just at this time the two brigades (Deas' and one other) were marching in line <ar51_476> of battle by the Vidito house to connect with our lines on the left, they changing direction to the right for this purpose. A general advance was ordered and our batteries opened simultaneously. The firing was heavy, and the enemy's massive columns were hurling against our wearied heroes. Again our line fell back. Two brigades now came up in our rear. One of these brigades moved in advance of us, and receiving the enemy's fire fell back behind us again.
My line was again ordered forward, the enemy being within 50 yards of the batteries and but one piece firing. Here commenced a most desperate struggle for the possession of this ground--Mission-ary Ridge.
The battle raged furiously and the tide of success wavered in the balance. Charge after charge was repulsed, only to rally and charge again. Again our line fell back, and the untiring, indomitable, and determined officers rallied again their fast thinning ranks and again moved forward. Here officers and men behaved most gallantly. Appeals to love of home and wounded comrades and the peril of the moment were made, and never did men rush forward more eager, daring, desperate, and defiant. The enemy's treble lines now began to show that our fire was terribly effective upon them.
Our cartridge boxes had been replenished as required, and still we were nearly out. Again more ammunition was supplied and the conflict continued hot and heavy. The enemy was now slowly giving back, hard pressed by our now shattered remnants. Another charge, with the yells of the men and cheers of the officers, and forward we pressed, only to discover the victory was ours and the enemy in full retreat.
This series of engagements lasted four long hours, during which Johnson's brigade won many laurels and an imperishable name. At this moment another brigade came up and was loudly cheered forward, but the enemy made no resistance. Our ammunition being (with but few exceptions) exhausted, the brigade halted and reformed, moved forward, about faced, marched back some distance, and formed on Manigault's line. Here we sent forward pickets to cover our front, and several prisoners were brought in.
The men rested on their arms during the night, having on this day won a victory, one of the most glorious of the war. In this engagement Everett's battery fired very effectively, being in the thickest of the fight. This evening he had 1 sergeant and 2 men wounded and 5 horses shot down by the enemy. During this engagement with the enemy this morning, while firing on the enemy's wagon train, he dismounted one piece of the enemy's artillery. He fired 428 rounds during the four days' fight. I commend the officers of this battery to favorable consideration for their fidelity and good conduct while under fire.
I have also to notice the services of Lieutenant Dent, commanding Robertson's battery, whose fire upon the enemy was incessant and effective, both officers and men behaving most coolly and gallantly during the day.
I have great pleasure in attesting to the gallant and efficient conduct of the following officers: Lieutenant-Colonel McEwen, jr., commanding Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment (wounded); Lieutenant-Colonel Snowden, commanding Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiment; Colonel Keeble, commanding Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment ; Lieutenant-Colonel Ready, of Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment <ar51_477> (wounded); Major Lowe, of Twenty-third Tennessee Regiment (wounded); Lieutenant-Colonel Floyd, commanding Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, and Major Davis, of Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment (wounded and captured). Adjutants Cross, Gwyn, and Fitzpatrick, and Lieutenant Greigg, who came into the action on Sunday morning; also Captain Terry, who, after he was wounded on Saturday evening, rendered me valuable service on Sunday.
Mention may also be made of the following: Private (ex-captain) Ridley, of Twenty-third Tennessee, who went into the action and fought manfully with a gun, setting a good example to all; Lieutenant Vernon, of Company B, Twenty-third Tennessee, for the manner in which he bore himself.
On entering the action this command numbered as follows, viz:
Command Officers Men Aggregate
The numbers of the different regiments of this command were thus small, the barefooted men having been sent to the rear, by order from division commander, as follows: Forty-fourth Tennessee, 56 men; Twenty-fifth Tennessee, 23 men; Twenty-third Tennessee, 26 men; Seventeenth Tennessee, 120 men and 2 officers. Aggregate, 227. My loss was as follows:
Command Killed. Wounded. Captured and missing. Aggregate
have much pleasure in stating that there was no straggling, either by
officers or men. I have also great satisfaction in noticing the medical
appointments of this brigade for promptness and efficiency. The care
treatment of the wounded by Dr. Jackson, Forty-fourth Tennessee, acting
brigade surgeon; Dr. Slummer and Dr. Harris, of Twenty-third Tennessee;
Dr. Jones, of Seventeenth Tennessee, and Drs. Fryar and Jackson, of
Twenty-fifth Tennessee. I also return my thanks to Dr John Ganaway who
volunteered his services and rendered himself useful in a high degree.
I think I may say that the wounded of this brigade received attention
second to no other brigade in the army commanded by General Bragg.
I have to report the following capture of ordnance and ordnance stores:
Rifles (in train)
cartridges, caliber .577 (in train)
Of the wagons captured this day, 9 (4-horse) were secured to this brigade, 1 with team for ordnance train. Also 3 wagon loads of accouterments.
Lieutenant Lake, in charge of the division ordnance train, has made the foregoing report to me. The pro rata of this capture is due to Johnson's brigade, viz:
And 1 wagon load of accouterments.
I have also to enumerate 3 brass 12-pounder cannon, 3 caissons for 12-pounder cannon, captured on the field on Sunday evening by this brigade, as mentioned in this report, I of which was hauled to the rear by Lieutenant Everett, commanding my battery, attached. I would also state that 21 of the above guns was manned by men (artillerists) from the Seventeenth and Twenty-third Tennessee Regiments, and used under direction of Lieutenant Dent with good effect on the enemy during the four hours' contest on Sunday evening.
I have also to mention Ordnance Sergt. J. F. Baxter, wounded on the field. This man is an untiring officer, and faithful to his trust.
The provost guard, under Lieutenants Ewing and Orr, rendered invaluable service.
I am pleased to notice the conduct of Private Turner Goodall, of the provost guard, who, in the thickest of the fight on Sunday evening, seeing the men all so gallantly at work and hard pressed, came up with his gun and fought manfully through the hottest of the fight, and by words of encouragement to his fellow soldiers and example did his whole duty as a soldier and provost guard.
The capture of prisoners by this brigade in the two days' fight exceeds 600 men and officers sent to the rear.
I would also mention Lieutenant Ewing, of the provost guard, from the Seventeenth Tennessee Regiment, who, finding that the officers of his company had all been placed hors de combat, asked permission and returned to take command of his company on Sunday morning. He is a worthy and promising officer.
I have to report the following articles captured from the enemy and secured by Dr. John W. Templeton for the use of the brigade: <ar51_479> One 2-horse spring ambulance; 70 dozen bandages; 2 pounds opium; and other medicines; 1 dozen sets splints.
Dr. Templeton is the hospital steward of the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment.
JNO. S. FULTON,
W. T. BLAKEMORE,
AUGUST 16-SEPTEMBER 22, 1863.--The Chickamauga Campaign.
No. 418.--Report of Maj. G. M.
SIR: On Friday, September 18, the Forty-fourth Tennessee Regiment left Ringgold, Ga., and marched 3 miles to [Cherokee] Spring, where the enemy's pickets had been posted, but were driven in by some of our brigade. It was very soon ascertained that the enemy was not far distant, his number unknown. One company of the regiment was thrown out as skirmishers while the regiment halted near the springs. Very soon afterward General Forrest came up and took the left wing of the regiment and went forward in the direction of the enemy, perhaps to ascertain his locality. The rest of the regiment, in connection with the brigade, was soon ordered forward, and so eager were our troops and settled their determination for victory that the enemy was compelled to retreat about 5 miles that day. At night we encamped near the bloody field of the two succeeding days.
Saturday morning the regiment remained quiet, excepting some few changes of position. About 3 o'clock in the evening, however, the regiment was ordered forward, and a few moments found it contending with the enemy. Near two hours was the regiment engaged in a severe conflict with the enemy, exposed to such showers of Minie, grape, canister, and shell as is seldom experienced in the battles of modern times. The enemy was driven back from his hidden position some distance; but the brigades on the right and left having fallen back, leaving us exposed to an enfilading fire of the enemy, compelled the regiment (with the brigade) to fall back a short distance, which it did, and was very soon ready for a hot reception of the enemy. At this point, however, we remained during the night prepared for the enemy at a moment's warning.
Sunday morning (perhaps about 9 o'clock), after some skirmishing with our pickets, the regiment was ordered forward to meet the insolent invader. This order was promptly obeyed, and the Middle Tennesseeans gallantly pressed forward, wishing not only to clear Georgia's soil of the vandal hosts, but also hoping that a victory there and then would speed the time when their present blockaded pathway would be opened, when, if not permitted to see their homes, they could at least hear therefrom. The regiment advanced but a short distance before it was engaged with the enemy, which was very soon dislodged and compelled to flee for quarters. From here the <ar51_493> regiment moved forward to the edge of an old field, where it was halted to see the result of a hot contest on our right.
During this time, however, skirmishers were sent forward, but no enemy found in our front. Again we were soon ordered to change direction to the right and then move forward. This being performed, the regiment advanced about half a mile and halted a few moments, and then it was moved a few hundred yards farther and then halted on the brow of the hill. Here it rested until about 2 o'clock, I suppose, when the enemy was discovered in front moving by the right flank, parallel with our line of battle. Here the regiment engaged the enemy in one of the most severe conflicts perhaps of the day. This was an important place for the enemy, and they came forward doubtless determined and, as they thought, prepared to take it. The attack was furious, indeed, but was sternly met. Owing to the vastly superior force of the enemy, the contest became so severe and deadly that the regiment fell back 100 or 200 yards, where it made a stand. This time the Forty-fourth was held in reserve, and the brigade formed partly in front of the Forty-fourth. Another engagement soon opened by the enemy attempting to take a section of a battery we had planted there. The lines soon became engaged, and so fierce and dreadful was the conflict that the Fortyfourth was soon ordered forward to the relief of the front line and security of the battery. After the exchange of several furious volleys the enemy was driven back, their superior force and fresh troops to the contrary notwithstanding. After a contest of about four hours with this corps of fresh troops, nightfall came on and we were found in possession of the battle-field with no enemy to be seen but the killed and wounded.
The number of prisoners taken by the Forty-fourth is not known. Their skirmishers took a wagon loaded with commissaries, &c., and sent some or all of them to the rear. They also at the time and place took 2 or 3 cavalry.
G. M. CRAWFORD,
R. G. CROSS,
I--VOLUME XXXVI/2 [S#
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by this brigade in the engagement at Port Walthall Junction on the 7th instant:
The morning of the 7th found us in line of battle on the Richmond and Petersburg Railroad, and to the right of the Junction. About 10 o'clock we received orders to move to the front. We had not gone far, however, before we were ordered to resume our former position. This being done, in about fifteen minutes we were ordered to move by the flank and on the left of the enemy's line of battle, under cover ofof thick pine woods. Leaving one regiment in reserve, we reached the point designated and formed line of battle perpendicular to that of the enemy, supporting a section of artillery in our front. Just at this time our battery opened on the enemy. The enemy's battery replied and shelled our position fiercely, though with very little effect, wounding 3 men. Failing to induce the enemy to advance, as <ar68_246> was anticipated, and finding that he was moving to our right, we retired to our first position on the line of the railroad, now become the right of our line of battle. Here we remained during the rest of the day. The enemy did not advance on our position, consequently, with the exception of some skirmishing and cannonading, we were not otherwise molested. Our casualties are as follows: Wounded, 7 privates; missing, 1 private.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Capt. R. E.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVI/2 [S# 68]
I have the honor to make a report of the part taken by the Forty-fourth and Twenty-fifth Tennessee Regiments in the engagement of May 16 instant, near Drewry's Bluff.
About 3 a.m. skirmishers were sent out from this regiment, composed of First, Fourth, and a detachment of 10 men from second company. A brisk fire was opened upon the enemy's skirmishers, who were driven back to their intrenchments. In this skirmish we sustained a loss of 5 men wounded from first company and 1 man missing from fourth company. About 4 a.m. the regiment moved with the brigade by the left flank from our second line of intrenchments along the Richmond and Petersburg dirt road, where we came under fire of the enemy's batteries, and on reaching the cabins recently used as brigade (Johnson's) headquarters we formed line of battle by the movement of" forward into line" in double-quick time, and moved against the enemy, who were now occupying our first line of breast-works, and who were delivering upon us an extremely heavy and fatal fire of both musketry and artillery.
We were about 100 yards from the breast-works, or less, when Lieut. Col. J. L. McEwen received a severe wound in the right leg, disabling him from further command. He ordered Major McCarver to hold the position at the risk of the loss of every man. Major McCarver took command and pressed forward, and we engaged the enemy. We were now near our first line of breast-works, then occupied by the enemy in position on the east side. The left of the regiment got to the breast-works first, marching a little obliquely. The enemy met the left wing of the regiment with a well-directed fire of musketry and demanded a surrender. <ar68_249> Capt. S. J. Johnson and his company (Twenty-fifth Tennessee) were here taken prisoners, with several other officers and men; in all, 1 captain, 4 lieutenants, and 45 men. Major McCarver had received a mortal wound and died on the field. Both of our field officers having been placed hors de combat, some confusion ensued.
Being the senior captain of the regiment, its
command now devolved upon me. I found I had no support on my right. I
rallied my regiment under heavy fire of the enemy and took shelter
behind an arm of the breast-works which adjoined the main works, but it
had no communication with the inner line, thus:
I again ordered my men to fire upon the enemy. I here saw the enemy pressing forward his skirmishers on my extreme right, at right angles with my position, in an open space from the intrenchment which they held, and which extended down on my right about 300 yards distant, and meeting the line of intrenchments in my front, thus:
I immediately sent a detachment of 20 men, under Lieut. J. A. Hatch, to engage them. A sharp skirmish ensued, and Lieutenant Hatch was mortally wounded, and fell dead. My skirmishers drove those of the enemy back, which was a very heavy line. The enemy abandoned our first line of intrenchments under a hot fire along our whole line. The brigade was then formed in line of battle, by the brigadier commanding, on the Richmond and Petersburg dirt road, moved forward, and occupied the first line of intrenchments, from which the enemy had been driven, where we, remained until late that evening, and then moved with Clingman's brigade to support Captain Martin's battery of artillery, which engaged the enemy the following day.
For list of casualties I refer you to annexed report, and remain, your obedient servant,
W. N. JAMES,
Command. Killed. Wounded. Prisoners. Aggregate.
Officers 2 4 5 11
Men 7 32 45 84
Total. 9 36 50 95
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XL/3 [S# 82]
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTHEASTERN VIRGINIA AND NORTH CAROLINA,
FROM JULY 5, 1864, TO JULY 31, 1864.--#1 (page 748)
SPECIAL ORDERS No. 40.
HDQRS. DEPT. OF N. C. AND S. VA
II. Johnson's old brigade is relieved from duty in Johnson's division and will proceed to the north bank of the James River and report to Lieutenant-General Ewell, to relieve the Sixtieth Alabama Regiment, Gracie's brigade, now at New Market Hill. The brigade will cross the river on the pontoon bridge below Drewry's Bluff.
By command of General Beauregard:
JNO. M. OTEY,
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLII/2 [S# 88]
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS, RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTHEASTERN VIRGINIA AND NORTH CAROLINA
FROM AUGUST 1, 1864, TO SEPTEMBER 30, 1864.--#5
Maj. GEORGE C. BROWN,
MAJOR: Inclosed I forward to you a remonstrance from the officers of Johnson's old brigade against consolidation with any other command. The original application of Brigadier-General Archer for the consolidation of Johnson's brigade with his own, which called forth this remonstrance, was sent to Colonel Hughs, about two weeks ago, for his remarks, with instructions to return the paper to these head-quarters. <ar88_1264> It has not yet been returned, and it is supposed that Colonel Hughs forwarded the paper directly to your office; if it is still in your office please place the inclosed with it and forward them together. If, however, the original application has not reached your office, be kind enough to direct Colonel Hughs to forward it immediately, in order that it may accompany the inclosed remonstrance.(*)
I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. E. FOOTE,
Gen. B. R. JOHNSON,
The application of Brigadier-General Archer for this brigade to be transferred to his command having been submitted to us, we, the undersigned, in behalf of the officers and men of this command, respectfully beg leave to enter our solemn protest against consolidation with or transfer to any brigade. The members of this command, to a man, are opposed to any arrangement by which they may lose their identity as a brigade. We have existed as an organization, known as Johnson's brigade, now exceeding two long years. We have fought on many battle-fields and undergone innumerable hardships together. Officers and men have vied with each other to make Johnson's brigade second to none in the armies of the Confederate States. After the battles of Shiloh and Perryville, where we lost over one-half of our original numbers, we entered Tennessee and recruited to a very large brigade before the battle of Murfreesborough. On that memorable and ensanguined field the brigade acted a conspicuous part, being in Cleburne's division and on the extreme left of the enemy. There we lost 672 officers and men. Even after this heavy loss we again recruited the command to almost the maximum number required by law. At Hoover's Gap we suffered severely, Stewart's division, of which we formed a part, being the only troops confronting the enemy at that point and Johnson's brigade bringing up the rear of the army to Chattanooga. After the demoralization of the retreat from our own State and a campaign in East Tennessee and North Georgia, we again met the enemy on the glorious and ever-memorable field of Chickamauga. Here, as you are aware, our losses were very heavy, being over one-half of the entire command. About 23d of November, 1863, we left the Army of Tennessee to re-enforce General Longstreet at Knoxville. We arrived in time to take part in that engagement. At Bean's Station the command composed one-third of the force in your successful attack and rout of a greatly superior enemy, numbering about five to one. The whole winter of 1863 was a series of active operations. The troops of this command were kept constantly on outpost duty and suffered immensely, both from exposure and lack of supplies, never remaining stationary or in quarters but for a few days at a time. We were taken from that scene of action about 1st of May, 1864, and brought to Richmond, Va., where we arrived just in time to confront the enemy at Port Walthall and Fort Clifton. It will be remembered that a detachment of men from this brigade, under Lieut. F. M. Kelso, manned the guns at Fort Clifton, and resisted successfully the advance of five of the enemy's <ar88_1265> gun-boats, sinking one and disabling and repulsing the others. At Drewry's Bluff, on 16th of May following, our losses were heavy, both in officers and men.
On 15th, 16th, 17th, again on 30th of June and 1st of July, we were engaged in battles before Petersburg, Va. Our losses were augmented, including valuable officers. This brigade has lost twelve field officers killed and three permanently disabled from field service. Seven of these field officers were killed in the fights around Richmond and Petersburg in the present campaign. On every field Johnson's brigade has shown uniform valor, gaining laurels of which they are justly proud. Would it not be injustice to consolidate such a command and cause it thereby to lose its identity? To say the least, would it not be ungrateful? When our absent members, who are not permanently disabled and prisoners of war, shall return, we will muster, as shown by our reports, over 1,650 officers and men. Should we be so fortunate as to again enter our beloved State, we pledge ourselves to recruit the command to its maximum number in six weeks. We know that this can be done without resorting to conscription, for Johnson's brigade is well and favorably known and mainly composed of men living south of Murfreesborough.
We have made this statement to you in justice to ourselves and the brave men we represent, trusting that you will use every endeavor to prevent our being swallowed up by any other command. We feel our indebtedness to you in a great measure for our present standing, and believe that you will take that interest in your old brigade which will defeat this measure. If we are allowed to remain as a separate organization and continued in the Department of Richmond until it becomes generally known throughout the South, we believe that there are Tennesseeans enough within our lines, "refugees from home," to swell our ranks to a respectable number. We hear daily of men in the enemy's lines desirous of joining us, but what chance have they at present? It is true that it may be urged that the transfer proposed is to be only temporary, but experience has shown that those temporary annexations do, after a lapse of time, by general assent, become permanent. Should this transfer be ordered in the face of the present strong opposition to it the most unhappy results may be anticipated, the energies of the officers would become paralyzed, and the spirit of the men broken.
JOHN M. HUGHS,
WM. H. FULKERSON,
U. C. HARRISON,
R. B. SNOWDEN,
J. E. SPENCER,
There can be no doubt that the sentiments of the officers and men of this brigade are strongly opposed to a combination with any other brigade, «80 R R--VOL XLII, PT II» <ar88_1266> however worthy or distinguished. This arises in part from experience resulting from the consolidation of regiments, and in part from a desire to preserve its identity in connection with its past history, its honorable deeds on fields that will be memorable in all future ages, the toils, privations, and heroic deeds, as well of the living as of the venerated dead, the memories of whose virtues hallow the very name it bears, unworthy though that name be. The men and officers still hope to return in triumph to their native State, and none but they can perhaps appreciate the unspeakable pride they will have, bearing there a distinct name and organization with all the glorious associations of the past. Though I may be excused for peculiar sentiments of regard for this brigade, I believe, in recommending that the combination proposed be not authorized, I but pointedly subserve the real interest of the Confederacy and the public good.
B. R. JOHNSON,
Abstract from tri-monthly return of the Department of Richmond, Lieut. Gen. R. S. Ewell,commanding, for October 31, 1864.
O Officers. A Effective total present. M Men. B Aggregate present.
P Present for duty. C Aggregate present and absent. D Prisoners.
Command. O M A B C O M
General staff 12 .... .... 12 12 .... ....
52 414 483 707 1,680 49 487
911 1,227 1,472
Organization of troops in the Department of Richmond, commanded by Lieut. Gen. Richard S. Ewell C. S. Army, October 31, 1864.
17th and 23d Tennessee (consolidated).
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLII/3 [S# 89]
ADJT. AND INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE,
* * * * * * * * * *
XXV. The brigade known as H. H. Walker's Virginia brigade, Army of Northern Virginia, is hereby disbanded, and the regiments which compose it will be assigned to other Virginia brigades in that army under the direction of the general commanding.
XXVI. The brigade (Army of Northern Virginia) known as Johnson's old Tennessee brigade is hereby united with Archer's brigade, of Heth's division. The necessary additional orders will be issued from headquarters Army of Northern Virginia.
* * * * * * * * *
O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVI/2 [S#
No further records from the 44th
Tennessee or Johnson's Brigade exist for 1865.
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