Browsing named entities in Colonel William Preston Johnston, The Life of General Albert Sidney Johnston : His Service in the Armies of the United States, the Republic of Texas, and the Confederate States.. You can also browse the collection for Big Sandy (Tennessee, United States) or search for Big Sandy (Tennessee, United States) in all documents.

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tates Government, more clearly than the Confederate, appreciated the character and importance of these mountaineers, and secured the adhesion of their leaders to the Federal side. The consequence was, the loss of the whole population, from the crests of the Alleghanies to their Western foot-hills, and the creation of a disloyal and hostile section, severing the East from the West, and converting the Gibraltar of the South into a stronghold for its foes. a line from the mouth of the Big Sandy River, where West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky corner, to Bowling Green, roughly indicates the Western edge of this Union district. But a belt of country through Western Kentucky and Tennessee, from the Ohio River to the State of Mississippi, was also full of Unionists ; and, indeed, in all Western Kentucky county was set against county, and every house was divided against itself. The whole land was become a debatable ground. The chief Confederate element, however, was contained in a narro
nd took up arms. But this episode will be given hereafter. While Grant was counting his losses on the day after Belmont, another contest was occurring at the other extremity of the hostile lines in Kentucky. Although the eastern part of the State had adhered with great unanimity to the Federal cause, many localities and families were favorable to the South. About 1,000 men, poorly armed and equipped, had enrolled themselves as Confederate soldiers at Piketon, near the head of the Big Sandy River. Their commander, Colonel John S. Williams, was endeavoring to supply and equip them. from the resources of the neighborhood. But lie was not to be left unmolested. Brigadier-General Nelson, who had advanced to Prestonburg with a Federal force, now pushed forward, and attacked Williams on the 8th of November. Nelson had four large regiments, a battalion, and two sections of artillery — nearly 4,000 men. Williams made a stand for time to get off his stores, which he did with little
eer cavalry in the Mexican War, and at Buena Vista had won distinction. He was a very vigorous and able lawyer, a shrewd politician, and a man of wit, humor, acumen, and judgment. In fact, his mind was essentially judicial. The writer has rarely known any man who impressed him so strongly in this regard. But he was not a man of action. Besides, his unwieldy size, weighing as he did some 300 or 350 pounds, unfitted him for the field. Marshall moved forward to Paintsville, on the Big Sandy River, about battle of Fishing Creek. the middle of December. This place was thirty-three miles above Louisa, and sixty from the Ohio River. At and near the mouth of the Big Sandy, and in the intervening region, were clustered some half-dozen towns of from 1,000 to 5,000 inhabitants each. The industries supporting this population were chiefly the working of coal and iron, with capital furnished by Ohio men. Hence, the people were generally hostile to the South. Marshall's force, when