previous next

[359] sending the remainder of our force across at an-other ford. The place was judiciously chosen and skilfully defended, and the result was that we were repulsed with severe loss — about twenty-five killed and twenty wounded. Among the killed, as usual, were our best men and officers, including Colonel Chenault, Major Brent, Captain Tribble, Lieutenants Cowan, Ferguson, and an-other lieutenant whose name I do not remember. Our march thus far has been very fatiguing — bad roads, little rest or sleep, little to eat, and a fight every day. Yet our men are cheerful, even buoyant. ant, and to see them pressing along barefooted, hurrahing and singing, would cause one to appreciate what those who are fighting in a just and holy cause will endure. About three o'clock, as I rode on about forty yards in advance, I heard the General exclaim something in a very excited tone, which I could not understand, and heard at the same time the report of a pistol. I turned, and, great God! to my horror I saw Captain Magennis falling from his horse, with the blood gushing out of his mouth and breast. His only remark was: “Let me down easy.” In an-other moment his spirit had fled. He was killed by Captain Murphy because Magennis, by the direction of General Morgan, had ordered Murphy to restore a watch taken from a prisoner. Thus was the poor fellow's language of the morning dreadfully realized. I was terrible affected. I had seen blood flow freely on many a battle-field — my friends had been killed in the morning — but this caused a deeper impression and shock than any occurrence I ever witnessed. Truly this has been a sad day. General Morgan looks haggard and weary, but he never despairs. May to-morrow dawn more bright than to-day closes.

July 5th.--Another day of gloom, fatigue, and death. Moved on Lebanon at sunrise — placed our men in line. Sent around Colonel J----with his brigade to the Danville road to cut off reenforcements, which we knew were expected from Danville. I went in with a flag of truce. It was fired on five times. Officer apologized, saying he thought it was a man with a white coat on. Very dangerous mistake, at least for me. Demanded unconditional surrender. Told Colonel Hanson we had his reinforcements cut off, and resistance was useless. He refused to surrender, and I then ordered him to send out the non-combatants, as we would be compelled to shell the town. He posted his regiment in the depot and in various houses, by which he was enabled to make a desperate resistance. After a fight of seven hours, General Morgan, finding the town could be taken in no other way, ordered a charge to be made. This ought to have been done at first, but General Morgan. said, when it was urged on him, that he wished to avoid the destruction of private property as much as possible, and he would only permit it as a, last and final resort. Colonel Hanson still held out in hopes of receiving reeforcements, and only surrendered after we had fired the buildings in which he was posted. His force consisted of the Twentieth Kentucky, about three hundred and seventy men, and twenty or twenty-five stragglers from other commands.

By this surrender we obtained a sufficient quantity of guns to arm all our men who were without them; also a quantity of ammunition, of which we stood sorely in need. At the order to charge, Duke's regiment rushed forward, and poor Tommy Morgan, who was always in the lead, ran forward and cheered the men with all the enthusiasm of his bright nature. Almost at the first volley he fell back, pierced though the heart. His only words were: “Brother Cally, they have killed me.” Noble youth! how deeply lamented by all who knew you! This was a crushing blow to General Morgan, as his affection for his brother exceeded the love of Jonathan to David. It caused a terrible excitement, and the men were in a state of frenzy. It required the utmost energy and promptitude on the part of the officers to prevent a scene of slaughter, which all would deeply have lamented. Our men behaved badly here, breaking open stores and plundering indiscriminately. All that officers, could do was done to prevent, but in vain. These occurrences are very diagraceful, and I am truly glad that they form exceptions to the general conduct.

While I was paroling the prisoners, a courier arrived, informing me that the enemy were approaching with two regiments of cavalry and a battery of artillery, and that skirmishing was then going on with our pickets. I was therefore obliged to order the prisoners to Springfield on the double-quick. Soon after we left Lebanon, the hardest rain I ever experienced commenced to fall, and continued till nine o'clock. Arrived at Springfield at dark, when I halted the prisoners in order to parole those who were not paroled at Lebanon, and formally dismissed them. This detained me at Springfield two hours after the command had passed. Wet and chilly, worn out, horse tired and hungry. Stopped to feed her. Falling asleep, was aroused by one of the men. Started on to the command. When I reached the point on the Bardstown road where I had expected the Second brigade to encamp, was halted by a party of cavalry. Supposing them to be our own pickets, I rode up promptly to correct them for standing in full view of any one approaching, when lo! to my mortification, I found myself a prisoner. My God! how I hated it, no one can understand. The first throught, after my wife and children, was my fine mare, Fannie Johnson, named after a pretty little cousin, of Richmond, Va. I said: “Poor Fannie, who will treat you as kindly as I have?” I turned her over to the captain and begged him to take good care of her, which he promised to do.

July 6th.--Travelled all day. Treated very kindly by Captain Smith. Sick, worn out, completely wearied out. Spirits cheerful. Met Captain Walcott on the road from Springfield. He got captain Smith to parole me. Captain Smith anxious to do so, as he had more prisoners than


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Springfield, Mo. (Missouri, United States) (4)
Danville (Virginia, United States) (2)
Bardstown (Kentucky, United States) (1)

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Dick Morgan (4)
W. F. Smith (3)
J. P. Murphy (2)
Tommy Morgan (2)
Magennis (2)
Charles Hanson (2)
Walcott (1)
Tribble (1)
Fannie Johnson (1)
Ferguson (1)
Basil Duke (1)
Cowan (1)
Chenault (1)
G. W. Brent (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
July 6th (1)
July 5th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: