previous next
[213] of plunder were thus obtained, while property of much greater value was destroyed; and enough recruits were doubtless gathered to offset the waste of war. Still, military operations, without a base and without regular supplies, seldom produce substantial, enduring results; and the Confederate guerrillas either soon abandoned Kentucky or concealed themselves and lay quiet therein. The leaders, with most of their followers, retired into Tennessee, where they captured Clarksville1 and possessed themselves of ample military stores; and a sharp cavalry fight at Gallatin resulted in a Union defeat, with a loss of 30 killed, 50 wounded, and 75 prisoners.

Gen. Buell had left Corinth in June, moving eastward, as if intent on Chattanooga; but Gen. Bragg--who had succeeded to the chief command of the Rebels confronting him — had thereupon moved more rapidly, on parallel roads, from Tupelo, Miss., through northern Alabama and Georgia, to Chattanooga, which he reached ahead of Buell's vanguard. Bragg's army had been swelled by conscription to some 45,000 men, organized in three corps, under Hardee, Bishop Polk, and Kirby Smith respectively, whereof the last was sent to Knoxville, while the two former sufficed to hold Chattanooga against any effort which Buell was likely to make.

McClellan's Richmond campaign having proved abortive, while conscription had largely replenished the Rebel ranks, Bragg was impelled to try a bold stroke for the recovery of Tennessee and the “liberation” of Kentucky. As with Lee's kindred advance into Maryland, the increasing scarcity of food was the more immediate, while fond expectations of a general rising in support of the Confederate cause, afforded the remoter incitement to this step. Louisville, with its immense resources, was the immediate object of this gigantic raid, though Cincinnati was thought to be also within its purview. Crossing2 the Tennessee at Harrison, a few miles above Chattanooga, with 36 regiments of infantry, 5 of cavalry, and 40 guns, Bragg traversed the rugged mountain ridges which hem in the Sequatchie Valley, passing through Dunlap,3 Pikeville,4 Crossville,5 masking his movement by a feint with cavalry on McMinnville, but rapidly withdrawing this when its purpose was accomplished, and pressing hurriedly northward, to Kentucky; which he entered on the 5th.

Kirby Smith, with his division, from Knoxville, advanced by Jacksonborough6 across the Cumberland range, through Big Creek Gap, moving as rapidly as possible, with a very light train ; his men subsisting mainly on green corn — which is scarce enough in that poor, thinly-peopled region — his hungry, foot-sore, dusty followers buoyed up with the assurance of plenty and comfort ahead. His cavalry advance, 900 strong, under Col. J. S. Scott, moving7 from Kingston, Tenn., passed through Montgomery and Jamestown, Tenn., and Monticello and Somerset, Ky., to London, where it surprised8 and routed a battalion of Union cavalry, inflicting a loss of 30 killed and wounded and 111 prisoners; thence pushing on, making additional captures by the

1 Aug. 19.

2 Aug. 24.

3 Aug. 27.

4 Aug. 30.

5 Sept. 1.

6 Aug. 22.

7 Aug. 13.

8 Aug. 17.

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 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.
Braxton Bragg (4)
Don Carlos Buell (3)
Kirby Smith (2)
J. S. Scott (1)
Bishop Polk (1)
George B. McClellan (1)
Robert E. Lee (1)
Hardee (1)
Dunlap (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.
September 1st (1)
August 30th (1)
August 27th (1)
August 24th (1)
August 22nd (1)
August 19th (1)
August 17th (1)
August 13th (1)
June (1)
5th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: