This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
 would post himself upon the high bluffs of the Kentucky river and dispute its passage; and the few places at which the passage could be effected were susceptible of every defence against greatly superior numbers. But if he could gain a victory here, General Smith counted upon pressing the enemy so closely, that he would not be able to rally his broken columns this side of Lexington, and perhaps of the Ohio river. The morning of the 30th of August came warm, clear and beautiful. No brighter sun ever scattered the mists of early day. No fairer field ever offered upon which to do battle. No two armies ever encountered with greater confidence. The one in numbers and superior arms and equipments, the other in discipline, in endurance, in Southern skill and pride, and in the indomitable courage which a profound conviction of the justice of our cause inspires. At 8 A. M. General Smith reached the battle field. An artillery duel was in progress. The enemy were drawn up on both sides the Richmond turnpike, with the artillery in the centre. Cleburne's division was formed in line of battle on the right of the turnpike, with the artillery on its left. The head of Churchill's column had barely reached the field, marching along the “pike,” but concealed from the enemy by the undulations of the ground. Churchill was ordered to take a circuitous route through the ravines to the left, and debouching on the enemy's right and rear, cut him off from his line of retreat to Richmond. The other brigade was held in reserve. Captain Martin's battery, of Florida artillery, was sent forward to take position on the rising ground by a brick house to the left of the road, but, mistaking the order, advanced quite near the enemy and unlimbered. His sharp-shooters immediately opened upon it, wounding Martin and his senior lieutenant, and a number of men, when the battery, being without support, retired to the position originally designated. Cleburne was apprised of Churchill's movement, and ordered to hold the enemy in check until it could be accomplished. By this time the infantry fire had become severe on the extreme right, and soon the enemy's line could be seen advancing rapidly in an effort to turn our right flank. This movement was skilfully foiled by Brigadier-General Preston Smith, upon whom the command of Cleburne's division had devolved, (that officer having been wounded a few moments earlier,) who in turn succeeded in turning the enemy's left, driving him from the field in great confusion. Churchill barely reached his position — in time to pour a volley into the broken ranks, but not to intercept the retreat. This was the combat of Mount Zion in the battle of Richmond. On the right we lost several gallant officers and a number of men. The
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.