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and supposed this had been done, for, in his first dispatch from St. Louis, announcing the battle, he says: The enemy attacked our works at Pittsburg, Tennessee, yesterday, and were repulsed with heavy loss. We do not appear, however, as the censor, simply the historian, whose province, although not always pleasant, should be guided by the line of duty, truth, and justice. It shall be our endeavor to avoid partisan issues and confine this statement to plain, historical facts. Thursday, the 3d, being quite unwell, remained in my tent. On Friday, made and received few visits, and in afternoon witnessed the first speck of war. A small detachment of the Fifth Ohio Cavalry, with a portion of the Seventieth Ohio Infantry, made a short reconnoissance and fell in with the advance of the Confederate army. We lost a few men; killed and captured half a dozen of the enemy. Of the wounded was an intelligent non-commissioned officer, who died during the night. This officer communicated info
information, of such vital importance to our army, was disregarded, and we slumbered on the very verge of a volcano. It was expected, says General Beauregard, we should be able to reach the enemy's lines in time to attack them early on the fifth instant. In consequence, however, of the bad condition of the roads from late heavy rains, the army did not reach the immediate vicinity of the enemy until late on Saturday afternoon. It was then decided the attack should be made on the next morning y-hunters utterly demolished the structure, and carried off the last remnant of a log. Before closing I may be expected to answer one question: Was the army at Shiloh surprised? It has already been shown what was the condition of things on the 5th, and surely no one will say that the Third Brigade of Sherman's Division was surprised. The same may be said of the Fourth Brigade, and the principal officers of the Fifth Ohio Cavalry; but here exceptions cease. The whole of that army, with indi
Prentiss' camp, intersecting the road from Hamburg, seven miles further up the river. These troops, particularly the advance division under Sherman, were mostly fresh from the recruiting camps, and wholly unpracticed, even in the simplest company maneuvres. Many of the regiments were not supplied with arms until their departure up the Tennessee. This was the case with my own regiment. With such disadvantages we went into the great battle of Sunday. At gray dawn, on the morning of the 6th, Lieutenant Burriss, of Captain Sisson's company, Seventy-seventh Ohio Volunteers-a regiment recruited from the border counties of Western Virginia and Ohio-came to brigade headquarters and communicated the intelligence that the enemy were gathering in great force. He was sent back with orders to Captain Sisson to maintain the picket line, but if attacked to retire in order, holding the enemy in check. We heard dropping shots over the whole of our immediate front and tolerably brisk firing
advance early on the morrow. Monday morning, at six o'clock, the combined forces of Grant and Buell moved against the enemy. General Buell's fresh troops, with the division of Lew Wallace, not engaged on Sunday (why, may, perhaps, never be known), pressed the enemy at all points. Steadily the army of the Union regained our camps, and by noon a signal victory had been achieved. Beauregard withdrew his forces in good order, and pursuit was not continued beyond Shiloh church. Tuesday, the 8th,--.General Sherman determined to pursue. With two brigades from his own division, two from Buell's army (Generals Garfield and Wood), and two regiments of cavalry, he proceeded from Shiloh in the direction of Corinth. At the distance of a little over a mile, we came upon the advance camp of the enemy, on Saturday night. Everywhere along our line of march remains of the retreating army were noticed. Fresh graves were all around; the dead, dying, and wounded lay in tents, old houses, and upo
anders-General Buell in that of Ohio, and General Halleck in that of Missouri-united their energies, and the capture of those important strongholds, Forts Donelson and Henry, rapidly followed. These successes led on to other operations. With the opening spring it was resolved to follow up the retreating armies of the Confederacy and strike an effective blow in the neighborhood of Corinth, Mississippi, where it was known that the most formidable defenses were in course of construction. In February, a new district was formed, called West Tennessee, and by order of General Halleck, General Grant was appointed to its command, with headquarters in the field. The most strenuous exertions were made to organize a force of sufficient strength to meet and overcome, in connection with the army of General Buell, the Confederate forces at Corinth. The Tennessee expedition was ordered to rendezvous at Paducah, at the mouth of the Tennessee river, and every available Western regiment was hurried
March 10th (search for this): chapter 50
. The Tennessee expedition was ordered to rendezvous at Paducah, at the mouth of the Tennessee river, and every available Western regiment was hurried forward to join it. With how much haste this was done, I may mention that my own regiment, which had already received orders to join General Rosecrans in Western Virginia, had the order countermanded and, without arms, were hurried forward to the month of the Tennessee river. Steamers great and small were put into requisition, and by the 10th of March, a fleet of formidable strength was ready to ascend the Tennessee. About this time arose a dilemma. General Grant, as alleged, on account of some dissatisfaction with the Donelson affair, was ordered to remain at Fort Henry and to turn the command over to General Charles F. Smith, an officer of the regular army, with few equals in or out of the service. It was this officer to whom all agree in giving the honor of saving the day at Donelson. The expedition steamed up the Tennessee and
March 14th (search for this): chapter 50
ral Grant, on the west bank of the Tennessee, at Pittsburg, and in the direction of Savannah, before he was reinforced by the enemy under General Buell, then known to be advancing via Columbia. By a rapid and vigorous attack on General Grant, it was expected he would be beaten back into his transports on the river or captured, etc. The disposition of the forces of General Grant, who, on account of the continued illness of General Smith, and an explanation with General Halleck, was ordered, March 14th, to assume command of the Army of the Tennessee, were as follows: General Sherman occupied the extreme front at Shiloh church; Generals Prentiss and Hurlbut lay on the left-; Generals McClernand and W. H. L. Wallace on the right and rear. The form of4he encampment was a semi-circle with its greater arc on the left. Two roads led from the landing to Corinth, distant twenty miles--one by the way of the church, and the other through General Prentiss' camp, intersecting the road from Hambur
March 18th (search for this): chapter 50
issatisfaction with the Donelson affair, was ordered to remain at Fort Henry and to turn the command over to General Charles F. Smith, an officer of the regular army, with few equals in or out of the service. It was this officer to whom all agree in giving the honor of saving the day at Donelson. The expedition steamed up the Tennessee and reached the point known as Pittsburg Landing, two hundred and twenty miles from Paducah, our (Sherman's) division going into camp at Shiloh Church on the 18th and 19th of March. Savannah, ten miles below, was selected as the headquarters of the commanding general. The division of General Lew Wallace was landed at Crump's, four miles above Savannah, and the other five divisions of McClernand, Smith, Hurlbut, Sherman, and Prentiss, disembarked at Pittsburg Landing, which consisted of a warehouse, grocery, and one dwelling. It was a point whence roads led to Corinth, Purdy, and the settlements adjacent. It appeared to have been regarded as of som
March 19th (search for this): chapter 50
with the Donelson affair, was ordered to remain at Fort Henry and to turn the command over to General Charles F. Smith, an officer of the regular army, with few equals in or out of the service. It was this officer to whom all agree in giving the honor of saving the day at Donelson. The expedition steamed up the Tennessee and reached the point known as Pittsburg Landing, two hundred and twenty miles from Paducah, our (Sherman's) division going into camp at Shiloh Church on the 18th and 19th of March. Savannah, ten miles below, was selected as the headquarters of the commanding general. The division of General Lew Wallace was landed at Crump's, four miles above Savannah, and the other five divisions of McClernand, Smith, Hurlbut, Sherman, and Prentiss, disembarked at Pittsburg Landing, which consisted of a warehouse, grocery, and one dwelling. It was a point whence roads led to Corinth, Purdy, and the settlements adjacent. It appeared to have been regarded as of some importance,
ust or not, can hereafter, perhaps, be better determined. General Sherman says the camp was chosen by General Smith, and by his orders he (Sherman and Hurlbut) took position. He further says: I mention for future history that our right flank was well guarded by Owl and Snake creeks, our left by Lick creek, leaving us simply to guard our front. No stronger position was ever held by any army. --(Record of court-martial, Memphis, Tennessee, August, 1862.) When the writer reached Shiloh (April 2d) he found the impression general that a great battle was imminent. Experienced officers believed that Beauregard and Johnston would strike Grant or the Army of the Tennessee before Buell could unite the Army of the Ohio. We found the army at Shiloh listless of danger, and in the worst possible condition of defense. The divisions were scattered over an extended space, with great intervals, and at one point a most dangerous gap. Not the semblance of a fortification could be seen. The ent
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