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[47] left — a great sacrifice, but not to be estimated in the balance with saving the army. This bold and masterly movement was accomplished on this night, and the next morning saw our army on the south of the Cumberland, and the enemy in Camp Beech Grove.

The crossing was effected during the night by the aid of the steamboat Noble Ellis, which had before ascended the river with supplies, and which was efficiently commanded on this occasion by Capt. Spiller, of the cavalry.

The river crossed, it was necessary to move somewhere in search of provisions and forage. If no enemy had appeared, the quitting of this portion of Kentucky had been gravely considered and almost determined upon, and in a few days would have been compelled. It was impossible to move further into Kentucky, from the barrenness of the mountains between that point and the Blue Grass; and all the counties on the left and right, and the northern counties of East-Tennessee, were too poor to support the army one day. With a vastly superior force attacking, the movement to the Cumberland River, at Gainsboro, a point of supply, was precipitated, and to this Gen. Crittenden is moving with short days' marches. From this point, if the enemy should advance into East-Tennessee, an attack could be made on his flank and rear, while passing through the hilly and barren region of Kentucky, towards Knoxville and the railroad.

I have thus briefly sketched our army movements for the last few days. Victory does not gleam upon our banners, and we may not receive the loud plaudits which it brings, but in view of an overwhelming force of the enemy, and the absolute want of army supplies, and the distressing poverty of the country, it must be conceded to Gen. Crittenden, that in the bold and gallant attack and masterly retreat, he has displayed the highest qualities of the military commander, and he deserves the admiration of the. country to which he has given his services, and in whose cause, at Fishing Creek, he so coolly exposed his life. Given a command most exposed and perilous, on the northern bank of the Cumberland River, he has saved it from the ablest generals, and an overwhelming army of the enemy. While they were confident of “bagging” this little army, it is ready yet to save East-Tennessee, and to “bag” any force venturesome enough to invade.


Another account.

Gen. Crittenden, on hearing that the enemy, three thousand strong, had crossed Fishing Creek, ordered Gen. Zollicoffer to advance and give them battle. Gen. Zollicoffer, as we understand, protested against the movement, preferring, as he alleged, that the enemy should make an attack on our breastworks. Gen. Crittenden, however, insisting that his plan should be carried into execution, Gen. Zollicoffer, at the head of portions of Battle's, Newman's, Stanton's, Powell's, and Murray's Tennessee regiments, and the Fifteenth Mississippi regiment, under Col. Stratham, together with an Alabama regiment, (the Fourteenth, we believe,) proceeded immediately to meet the opposing forces, and after marching seven miles, found the enemy some twenty-five thousand strong.

At eight o'clock in the morning of Sunday last, the nineteenth instant, the battle commenced, the enemy opening fire. The Mississippi regiment was ordered to the right, and Battle's to the left, and immediately afterward, riding up in front, Gen. Zollicoffer advanced to within a short distance of an Ohio regiment, which had taken a position at a point unknown to him, and which he supposed to be one of his own regiments.

The first intimation he had of his dangerous position was received when it was too late. “There's old Zollicoffer,” cried out several of the regiment in front of him. “Kill him!” and in an instant their pieces were levelled at his person. At that moment Henry M. Fogg, aid to Gen. Zollicoffer, drew his revolver and fired, killing the person who first recognized Gen. Zollicoffer. With the most perfect coolness, Gen. Zollicoffer approached to the head of the enemy, and drawing his sabre, cut the head of the Lincoln colonel from his shoulders. As soon as this was done, twenty bullets pierced the body of our gallant leader, and Gen. Zollicoffer fell from his horse a mangled corpse.

The fight continued until about eleven o'clock, Col. Battle's and Col. Stratham's regiments bearing the brunt of the battle. Before the engagement closed, at this point, however, Gen. Crittenden ordered the entire force, with the exceptio; of the two regiments above named, back to their breastworks. It was at this critical moment that our troops suffered the most. Side by side the gallant Mississippi and Tennessee regiments stood up against the overwhelming force of the enemy. Three times the Spartan band charged upon the united host of the vandals, and unawed by the lifeless forms and dying groans of their comrades, they continued to dispute their right to desecrate the sacred soil of our sunny land, until they were compelled to retreat or fall into the hands of the spoilers.

At three o'clock in the evening our forces, who had gained their intrenchments, were again attacked, the enemy surrounding them on every side. From this hour the battle raged furiously until eleven o'clock at night, at which time the confederates were compelled to abandon their position, leaving upon the field a large lot of provisions, the splendid batteries commanded by Captains Rutledge and McClung, besides camp equipage, baggage, etc.

Among those reported killed in addition to the commander of the brigade, are the following: Lieut.-Col. Carter, of Battle's regiment, from Williamson County; Tim Dodson, a well-known citizen of this county; the gallant Lieut. E. B. Shields, of this city; Lieut. Baillie Peyton, Jr., of Sumner County; James Patterson, of this county, color-bearer of Battle's regiment; James Gray, orderly-sergeant of Capt. Rice's company, Col. Battle's regiment.

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