1. the Storming of Lookout mountain.

by Capt. Thos. H. Elliott.
The uncertain mists were thickening as the ‘proach of day was quickening;
     The angel of the dawn had put out the stars of night;
A sombre mantle wrapped about the beetling cliffs of Lookout,
     Which frowned in threat'ning majesty from its heaven-soaring height.

Awakened a day of great portending — soldiers praying a victorious ending
     Should show the world the prowess and the force in Federal might.
Many a suppliant, prayerful bending, to Him patriot hopes was sending,
     That Lookout should be ours before the day sank into night.

Through the forest, bared and blackened, with steadiness ne'er slackened,
     Wound like a lithesome river a column known as Geary's braves;
Marched they forth to take the mountain, though the soil should drain life's fountain--
     Surged they onward 'gainst the giant rocks like the sea's tumultuous waves.

“Forward! Forward!” Geary shouted, as their dancing colors flouted
     The chilly breeze that 'mong the mountain shadows played;
Borne upon the wings of glory, like gnomes of ghostly story,
     They sped onward, and with wild charge the Miss'ippians dismayed.

Then came a scene of wildest battle — the dread musketry's rattle--
     And the bayonet found its sheath in the carcass of the foe.
The “Rebs” retreated quite defeated — the remnant who Death cheated--
     Our victors sent up loud cheers for Union, Geary, “Uncle Joe.”

Glorious paeans, cheers of conquest, among crags, above the contest,
     Greeted Hooker, greeted Geary, with the first flush of the sun.
Then our bay'nets madly plying, the enemy ever flying each for bravest deeds vying,
     On battlements; in deep ravines — our work in earnest had begun.

Behind works of art and strongest Nature — a wall of flame at each embrasure--
     Under the weird finger of the mountain, which reached into the skies,
Where the grizzly warrior “graybacks” of the rebel Manny, who, like Ajax,
     Defied a power above him, and to oppose it hard he tries.

Over works, upon their flanks, hand to hand amidst their ranks,
     The pressing force of Geary forth the foemen drove;
Over bastions, breastworks, fled they — from the carnival of death sped they--
     But deadly volleys and “White Stars” a cordon round them wove.

Deadly trial of the dastard's flight, with the sweeping whirlwind's might,
     Toward the Star of Bethlehem, Geary turned the mountain curve;
O'er the crimson paths before them, on the vanquished host they bore them,
     The daring Second and Third brigades, and the gallant First in reserve.

To the ambitious eagle's eyrie, were borne the strifetorn flags of Geary,
     As like angry storm-spirits, his boys fought far above the clouds;
Their courage was their aegis as they carved for hist'ry brightest pages;
     In their path of glory many “blue-coats,” more of “gray-coats” --martial shrouds.

Grenades, grape, and screaming shell, with noise like strife of fiends in hell,
     Unheeded came from the Titan rocks into this Gheber's bloody glen;
“Sweep every rebel from it,” from base to Lookout summit,
     Was the fiat of the bold Hooker, and the duty of his men.

In the “last ditch,” torn and shattered, massed the rebel hordes so scattered, [2]
     And the clash of arms and crash of battle raged anew--
Assault upon assault was given, while the crags and heavens seemed riven,
     Surged they forward — surged they backward, and recoiled that rebel crew.

The shades of night crept on apace, came erring shots through gloomy space,
     As in the fogs of Erebus, died this most glorious day;
The myriad fires beaming, 'mid planet torches gleaming
     With fitful glare, revealed the battle horrors in ghastly array.

From the blasted souls there moaning comes a wail and sufferers' groaning,
     And Death in hideous forms dead hopes grim revealed.
'Twas a night of watch and waiting, with no vigilance abating,
     While the chill wind sang hosannas and a requiem o'er the bloody field.

At early dawn the mount was ours, one of heaven's choicest dowers,
     As the Stars and Stripes and “White Star” were planted on the crest.
Two thousand foes were taken from the ranks we had so shaken;
     Seven colors, and their cannon, and many spoils given to our behest.

Lay the laurel on their cold brows, honored martyrs to their Union vows,
     The brave soldiers whose lives on their country's shrine were given;
Bow the head and drop the tear, as you plant banners o'er the bier
     Of the patriot whose spirit soars with angel wings to heaven.

With life-regardless decision — the old “White Star Division,”
     Fresh and laurelled from the brave army of Potomac's shore,
Had shown their ability to fight, on this defiant mountain's height,
     And with “Cumberland's” brave boys ask to finish up the war.

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