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The Annals of the Civil War Written by Leading Participants North and South (ed. Alexander Kelly McClure), The last Confederate surrender. (search)
Richmond. Here, in reply to a dispatch to Richmond, I was directed to assume command of the Department of Alabama, Mississippi, etc., with headquarters at Meridian, Mississippi, and informed that President Davis would, at an early day, meet me at Montgomery, Alabama. The military situation was as follows: Sherman occupied Atlantapulsing an assault, General Maury, in accordance with instructions, withdrew his garrisons, in the night, to Mobile, and then evacuated the city, falling back to Meridian, on the line of the Mobile and Ohio Railway. General Forrest was drawn in to the same point, and the little army, less than eight thousand of all arms, held in rrnishing the latter with currency, of which they were destitute-and friendly relations promoted. These suggestions were adopted, and a day or two thereafter, at Meridian, a note was received from General Canby, inclosing copies of orders to Generals Granger and Steele, commanding army corps, by which it appeared these officers we
from their point of convergence, and so far separated from each other. The enterprise was gigantic; but its awkwardness equaled its strength, and its own weight broke its back. Sherman, harassed by cavalry and skirmishers-advanced in solid column; while Polk, with his merely nominal force, was unable to meet him. But the latter fell back in good order; secured his supplies, and so retarded his stronger adversary, that he saved all the rolling-stock of the railroads. When he evacuated Meridian, that lately busy railroad center was left a worthless prize to the captor. Meantime Forrest had harassed the cavalry force of Smith and Grierson, with not one-fourth their numbers; badly provided and badly mounted. Yet he managed to inflict heavy loss and retard the enemy's march; but finally-unable to wait the junction of S. D. Lee, to give the battle he felt essential-Forrest, on the 20th February, faced the Federal squadrons. Confident of an easy victory over the ragged handful of
Lt.-Colonel Arthur J. Fremantle, Three Months in the Southern States, May, 1863. (search)
ked for it continually, and on the railroad every person's passport was rigidly examined. We drove to the nearest point at which the railroad was in working order, a distance of nearly five miles. We then got into the cars at 6 P. M. for Meridian. This piece of railroad was in a most dangerous state, and enjoys the reputation of being the very worst of all the bad railroads in the South. It was completely worn out, and could not be repaired. Accidents are of almost daily occurrence, aty one had happened the day before. After we had proceeded five miles, our engine ran off the track, which caused a stoppage of three hours. All male passengers had to get out to push along the cars. 24th may, 1863 (Sunday). We reached Meridian at 7.30 A. M., with sound limbs, and only five hours late. We left for Mobile at 9 A. M., and arrived there at 7.15 P. M. This part of the line was in very good order. We were delayed a short time, owing to a difficulty which had occurre
Ulysses S. Grant, Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant, Operations in Mississippi-Longstreet in east Tennessee-commissioned Lieutenant-General-Commanding the armies of the United States-first interview with President Lincoln (search)
m about 20,000 men in all. Sherman knew that General (Bishop) [Leonidas] Polk was occupying Meridian with his headquarters, and had two divisions of infantry with a considerable force of cavalry scattered west of him. He determined, therefore, to move directly upon Meridian. I had sent some 2,500 cavalry under General Sooy Smith to Sherman's department, and they had mostly arrived before hese scouts returned it was through them that he got the information of General Polk's being at Meridian, and of the strength and disposition of his command. Forrest had about 4,000 cavalry with hatur, Mississippi, where, by the way, Sherman himself came near being picked up. He entered Meridian on the 14th of the month, the enemy having retreated toward Demopolis, Alabama. He spent several days in Meridian in thoroughly destroying the railroad to the north and south, and also for the purpose of hearing from Sooy Smith, who he supposed had met Forrest before this time and he hoped had
J. B. Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary, XXV. April, 1863 (search)
s beyond; but his next fire took effect in Dixon's breast, who fell and expired in a few moments. Many of our people think that because the terms of enlistment of so many in the Federal army will expire next month, we shall not have an active spring campaign. It may be so; but I doubt it. Blood must flow as freely as ever! April 25 We have bad news from the West. The enemy (cavalry, I suppose) have penetrated Mississippi some 200 miles, down to the railroad between Vicksburg and Meridian. This is in the rear and east of Vicksburg, and intercepts supplies They destroyed two trains. This dispatch was sent to the Secretary of War by the President without remark. The Enquirer this morning contained a paragraph stating that Gen. Pemberton was exchanging civilities with Gen. Sherman, and had sent him a beautiful bouquet! Did he have any conception of the surprise the enemy was executing at the moment? Well, Mississippi is the President's State, and if he is satisfied with N
J. B. Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary, chapter 32 (search)
tired, and that two corps of it have not been sent to Rosecrans. Well, we shall know more soon, for Lee is preparing for a movement. It may occur this week. In the West it is said Gen. Johnston is working his way, with a few brigades, from Meridian towards Nashville. Lieut.-Gen. E. Kirby Smith writes for authority to make appointments and promotions in the trans-Mississippi Army, as its communications with Richmond are permanently interrupted. The President indorses that he has no autd days. October 31 Letters came to-day from the President (or rather copies in his own handwriting), relieving Lieut.-Gen. Hardee, in Mississippi, and assigning him to a command under Gen. Bragg. He also writes a friendly letter (from Meridian, Miss.) to Gen. Bragg, informing him that Gen. Hardee had been ordered to report to him without delay, and that two brigades might go with him, if needed. This indicates that the President means to sustain Bragg, nothwithstanding the clamor agains
J. B. Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary, XXXII. November, 1863 (search)
hority to grant them. He says many thousands have died by being hastened back to the army uncured of their wounds, etc.-preferring death to being advertised as deserters. Captain Warner sent me a bag of sweet potatoes to-day, received from North Carolina. We had an excellent dinner. November 18 We have no news whatever, except some damage reported at Charleston, done to two monitors yesterday. The bombardment has assumed no new phase. A letter from Gen. J. E. Johnston, Meridian, Miss., indicates that the Secretary has been writing him and saying that he was responsible for the outrages of the impressing agents in his department. Gen. J. disclaims the responsibility, inasmuch as the agents referred to act under orders from the Commissary-General or Secretary of War. November 19 Miss Harriet H. Fort, of Baltimore, has arrived via Accomac and Northampton Counties, with a complete drawing of all the defenses of Baltimore. The Medical Purveyor's Guards have pet
J. B. Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary, XXXV. February, 1864 (search)
he Treasury, we shall see prices fall. And soon there will be a great rush to fund the notes, for fear the holders may be too late, and have to submit to a discount of 331 per cent. Dispatches from Gen. Polk state that Sherman has paused at Meridian. February 20 Bright, calm, but still cold-slightly moderating. Roads firm and dusty. Trains of army wagons still go by our house laden with ice. Brig.-Gen. Wm. Preston has been sent to Mexico, with authority to recognize and treat wihe want of sufficient food; and this is the case with many thousands of non-producers, while there is enough for all, if it were equally distributed. The Secretary of War has nothing new from Gen. Polk; and Sherman is supposed to be still at Meridian. There is war between Gen. Winder and Mr. Ould, agent for exchange of prisoners, about the custody and distribution to prisoners, Federal and Confederate. It appears that parents, etc. writing to our prisoners in the enemy's country, for wa
J. B. Jones, A Rebel War Clerk's Diary, chapter 48 (search)
deracy will at once gather up its military strength and strike such blows as will astonish the world. There will be desperate conflicts! Vice-President Stephens is in his seat to-day, and seems determined. Mr. Hunter is rolling about industriously. Gen.Lee writes that desertions are caused by the bad management of the Commissary Department, and that there are supplies enough in the country, if the proper means were used to procure them. Gen. Taylor sends a telegram from Meridian, Miss., stating that he had ordered Stewart's corps to Augusta, Ga., as Sherman's movement rendered a victory necessary at once. The dispatch was to the President, and seems to be in response to one from him. So we may expect a battle immediately near Augusta, Ga. Beauregard should have some 20,000 men, besides Hardee's 15,000-which ought to be enough for victory; and then good-by to Sherman! February 7 A snow four inches in depth on the ground, and snowing. Last night Governor Smith, P
amed to command the 17th Corps, and actually remained so long in Washington that we had got to Big Shanty before he overtook us. Again, after the battles of Missionary Ridge and Knoxville, when Howard served with me, I went back to Vicksburg and Meridian, leaving you in command of the Fifteenth Corps along the railroad from Stevenson to Decatur. I was gone three months, and, when I got back, you complained to me bitterly against George H. Thomas, that he claimed for the Army of the Cumberland ee, General Sherman made a full explanation to me of the matter and at the time I made full notes of it in my diary, and I quote here what he said: Sherman said that in the winter of 1863, after the battle of Missionary Ridge on his trip to Meridian, he left Logan in command at Huntsville with the 15th Corps, and Dodge in command on line of railroad from Nashville to Decatur with the 16th Corps, both in General Thomas's Department. On his return, he found Logan much dissatisfied with Thoma
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