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[180] orders entrusted to them, and the willingness displayed by them to face any danger.

I am, General, very respectfully,

George W. Monroe, Colonel Twenty-second Kentucky infantry, Commanding Forces. Official: J. M. Mills, Captain, and A. A. A. G.


A National account.

Frankfort, June 15.
I left Lexington on Thursday last, under the impression that the war was over. This impression was generally shared by the citizens of that place, and on application at the Provost-Marshal's office for a pass to Frankfort, I received the gratifying reply that none was required. Yet, so little was known of “the situation” by the authorities, that Morgan's forces entered the city the night succeeding the very afternoon on which I left. On arriving at Frankfort, to my inexpressible horror and disgust, I found the place in a state of close siege, and the citizens in great excitement.

Frankfort has been repeatedly captured and recaptured during this war, but generally given up without a fight. This time Governor Bramlette didn't see it in that light, although fabulous numbers of rebels under John Morgan, and all the other Morgans, Forrost, Everett, and other noted raiders, with smaller hosts under such lesser lights as Jenkins, Jessie, et al., were reported to be advancing from all possible and impossible directions, and closing in around the devoted town. The plucky Governor swore he'd be — something or other'd — if they should be permitted to enter the capital without a fight, and they were not.

The means of defence, outside of the “melish,” did not amount to any considerable sum; but the latter proved a host within themselves. Of soldiers, there were about fifty, including the lame, halt, and blind. Then there was a little fort on Blanton's Hill, mounting several six, twelve, and twenty-four-pounders. So it was manifest that the main dependence must be in the indomitable spirit of the citizens, town and county. Peak's Mill and Bald Knob each sent in a full company of half-tamed tigers — men whose faces indicated good fighting qualities, and whose expertness with the rifle is such that any of them can knock out a squirrel's eye every “pop,” from the topmost branch of the tallest white-oak in Kentucky. The town citizens either volunteered, or were impressed into the service, and so the siege began.

Not being altogether satisfied that a successful defence could be made, it was determined to convey the most valuable portion of the State property to Louisville. Accordingly, several million dollars' worth of ordnance stores, together with the State archives, were loaded on to a train, and on Thursday afternoon started down the road. On arriving at North Benson, the track was found torn up, and a determined attack made upon the train by a party of rebels. The citizen guard made a gallant defence, and, after a spirited skirmish, the train began to back out. Then it was found that for miles in their rear obstructions had been placed at intervals on the track, rendering their return a work of danger and difficulty, the rebels following up and firing, all the way.

Friday, another force of citizens, with a small mounted force of State troops, went down the road, and encountered the rebels in a stockade at North Benson. The cavalry are not reported to have covered themselves with any particular effulgence of glory, but the “melish” charged the stockade determinedly, and drove the rebels out, wounding three of them severely and capturing some horses and prisoners. The prisoners escaped, but the horses were secured. The attacking party lost one man badly wounded — a State soldier — and three prisoners (citizens), who were kept a day or two and released on parole.

On Friday evening, just about sundown, a party of rebels made an audacious attack upon the fort on Blanton's Hill, north of the town. They drove in the pickets near the barracks, on the Owenton road, and captured a six-pounder stationed there, following it up with a determined dash for the fort, as if they meant business. Finding themselves met by a more stubborn defence and a hotter fire of small arms and artillery than they had anticipated, they fell back as rapidly as they had advanced, and in a few moments the light of the burning barracks, fired by the retreating rebels, illuminated the surrounding country. Of those in the fort, a young man named Hutchinson was shot in the mouth, and a man by the name of Coleman in the shoulder. Enemy's loss, if any, unknown.

The females and children of Frankfort passed a tempestuous night. The citizen picket manifested throughout the night the eternal vigilance which is the price of liberty, and a wonderful alacrity in pulling trigger. There was a continual popping at imaginary rebels, and several matronly cows, instead of wooing tired nature's sweet restorer, indulged in nocturnal rambles, with a reprehensible curiosity to see what the d — l was up, and failing to give satisfactory answer to the excited “Who comes there?” of the pickets, fell victims to the feminine vice of wanting to know things.

Saturday morning dawned bright and beautiful, and all serene about the beleaguered city. A glance toward the frowning battlements of the fortress on the hill revealed the gratifying fact that our flag was still there. Not a rebel was in sight, and sanguine temperaments began to indulge in fond hopes that the crisis was over, when suddenly a long, straggling string of horsemen were seen winding around the base of Monroe's Hill, in South Frankfort. The old iron six-pounder at the arsenal, which had been looking savagely up the river toward the cemetery, was slewed around and trained on the


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