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[164] was turned over to Brig.-Gen. Buckner, who at once opened negotiations with the enemy, which resulted in the surrender of the place. Thus ended the conflict running through four days and four nights; a large portion of which time it was maintained with the greatest fierceness and obstinacy, in which we, with a force not exceeding thirteen thousand, (a large portion of whom were illy armed,) succeeded in resisting and driving back with discomfiture an army of more than thirty thousand men. I have no means of accurately estimating the loss of the enemy. From what I saw upon the battle-field, from what I witnessed throughout the whole period of the conflict, from what I was able to learn from sources of information deemed by me worthy of credit, I have no doubt that the enemy's loss in killed and wounded reached a number beyond five thousand. Our own losses were extremely heavy, but for want of exact returns I am unable to state precise numbers. I think they will not be far from one thousand five hundred killed and wounded. Nothing could exceed the coolness and determined spirit of resistance which animated the men in this long and ferocious conflict; nothing could exceed the determined courage which characterized them throughout this terrible struggle, and nothing could be more admirable than the steadiness which they exhibited, until nature itself was exhausted, in what they knew to be a desperate fight against a foe very many times their superior in numbers. I cannot particularize instances of heroic daring performed by both officers and men, but must content myself for the present by saying, in my judgment, they all deserve well of the country.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

John B. Floyd, Brigadier-General Commanding. Official: John Withers, A. A. Gen. A. & I. G. O., March 10, 1862.


General Pillow's report.

Columbia, Tennessee, February 18, 1862.
Captain Clarence Derrick, A. A. General:
On the eighteenth instant, General A. S. Johnston ordered me to proceed to Fort Donelson and take command at that post. On the nineteenth instant, I arrived at that place. In detailing the operations of the forces under my command at Fort Donelson, it is proper to state the condition of that work and of the forces constituting its garrison. When I arrived, I found the work on the river battery unfinished, and entirely too weak to resist the force of heavy artillery. I found a ten-inch columbiad and a thirty-two-pounder rifled gun that had not been mounted. Deep gloom was hanging over the command, and the troops were greatly depressed and demoralized by the circumstances attending the surrender of Fort Henry, and the manner of retiring from that place. My first attention was given to the necessity of strengthening this work and mounting the two heavy guns, and to the construction of defensive works to protect the rear of the river-battery. I imparted to the work all the energy which it was possible to do, working day and night with the whole command. The battery was without a competent number of artillerists, and those that were there were not well instructed in the use of their guns. To provide for this want, I placed the artillery companies under active course of instruction in the use of their guns. I detailed Captain Ross, with his company of artillerists, to the command of one of the river-batteries. These heavy guns being mounted, and provision made for working them, and a proper supply of ammunition having been procured by my order from Nashville, I felt myself prepared to test the effect of the fire of the heavy metal against the enemy's gunboats, though the work was much in need of more heavy pieces.

The armament of the batteries consisted of eight thirty-two-pounders, three thirty-two-pound carronades, one eight-inch columbiad, and one rifled gun of thirty-two pound calibre. The selection of the site for the work was an unfortunate one. While its command of the river was favorable, the site was commanded by the hills above and below on the river, and by a continuous range of hills all around the works to its rear.

A field-work of very contracted dimensions had been constructed for the garrison to protect the battery; but this field-work was commanded by the hills already referred to, and lay open to a fire of artillery from every direction except from the hills below. To guard against the effect of fire of artillery from these heights, a line of defence-work, consisting of rifle-pits and abattis for infantry, detached on our right, but continuous on our left, with defences for our light artillery, were laid off by Major Gilmer--engineer of General A. S. Johnston's staff, but on duty with me at the post — around the rear of the battery, and on the heights from which artillery could reach our battery and inner field-work, enveloping the inner work and the town of Dover, where our principal supplies of quartermaster and commissary stores were on deposit.

These works, pushed with the utmost possible energy, were not quite completed, nor my troops all in position, though nearly so, when Brigadier-General Floyd, my senior officer, reached that station. The works were laid off with judgment and skill, by Major Gilmer; were well executed, and designed for the defence of the rear of the works; the only objection being to the length of the line, which, however, from the surroundings, was unavoidable. The length of the line, and the inadequacy of the force for its defence, was a source of embarrassment throughout the struggle which subsequently ensued in the defence of the position.

I had placed Brigadier-General Buckner in command of the right wing, and Brigadier-General Johnson in command of the left. By extraordinary efforts, we had barely got the works in a defensible condition, when the enemy made an advance in force around and against the entire line of our outer works.


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