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Appendix to chapter II.

Major-General McClellan to Major-General Halleck

Headquarters of the army, Washington, D. C., January 3, 1862.
Major-General H. W. Halleck, commanding Department of Missouri:
General: It is of the greatest importance that the rebel troops in western Kentucky be prevented from moving to the support of the force in front of General Buell. To accomplish this, an expedition should be sent up the Cumberland river (to act in concert with General Buell's command), of sufficient strength to defeat any force that may be brought against it. The gunboats should be supported by at least one, and perhaps two, divisions of your best infantry, taken from Paducah and other points from which they can best be spared; at the same time, such a demonstration should be made on Columbus as will prevent the removal of any troops from that place; and if a sufficient number have already been withdrawn, the place should be taken. It may be well, also, to make a feint on the Tennessee river, with a command sufficient to prevent disaster under any circumstances.

As our success in Kentucky depends in a great measure on our preventing reenforcements from joining Buckner and Johnston, not a moment's time should be lost in preparing these expeditions. [584]

I desire that you give me at once your views in full as to the best method of accomplishing our object, at the same time stating the nature and strength of the force that you can use for the purpose, and the time necessary to prepare.

Very respectfully,

G. B. McCLELLAN, Major-General commanding.

Major-General Halleck to Brigadier-General Grant.

headquarters, Department of the Missouri, St. Louis, January 6, 1862.
Brigadier-General U. S. Grant, Cairo, Ill.:
I wish you to make a demonstration in force on Mayfield, and in the direction of Murray. Forces from Paducah and Fort Holt should meet it and threaten ‘Camp Beauregard’ and Murray, letting it be understood that Dover is the object of your attack. But don't advance far enough to expose your flank or rear to an attack from Columbus, and by all means avoid a serious engagement.

Make a great fuss about moving all your force towards Nashville, and let it be so reported by the newspapers.

Take proper precautions to deceive your own men as well as the enemy. Let no one, not even a member of your own staff, know the real object. I will send you some forces from this place to increase the deception. Let it be understood that twenty or thirty thousand men are expected from Missouri, and that your force is merely the advanced guard to the main column of attack. The object is to prevent reenforcements being sent to Buckner. Having accomplished this, you will slowly retire to your former positions, but if possible keep up the idea of a general advance. Be very careful, however, to avoid a battle. We are not ready for that. But cut off detached parties, and give your men a little experience in skirmishing.

If Commodore Foote can make a gunboat demonstration at the same time, it will assist in carrying out the deception.

H. W. Halleck, Major-General.


Two letters of instructions from Major-General Halleck to Brigadier-General Grant, for movement against Fort Henry.

headquarters, Department of the Missouri, St. Louis, January 30, 1862.
Brigadier-General U. S. Grant, Cairo, Ill.:
You will immediately prepare to send forward to Fort Henry, on the Tennessee river, all your available force from Smithland, Paducah, Cairo, Fort Holt, Bird's Point, etc. Sufficient garrisons must be left to hold these places against an attack from Columbus. As the roads are now almost impassable for large forces, and as your command is very deficient in transportation, the troops will be taken in steamers up the Tennessee river as far as practicable. Supplies will also be taken up in steamers as far as possible. Flag-Officer Foote will protect the transports with his gunboats. The Benton, and perhaps some others, should be left for the defence of Cairo. Fort Henry should be taken and held at all hazards. I shall immediately send you three additional companies of artillery from this place. The river front of the fort is armed with 20-pounders. It may be necessary for you to take some guns of large calibre, and establish a battery on the other side of the river. It is believed that the guns on the land side are of small calibre, and can be silenced by our field artillery. It is said that the north side of the river, below the fort, is favorable for landing. If so, you will land and rapidly occupy the road to Dover, and fully invest the place, so as to cut off the retreat of the garrison. Lieutenant-Colonel McPherson, U. S. Engineers, will immediately report to you, to act as chief engineer of the expedition. It is very probable that an attempt will be made from Columbus to reenforce Fort Henry, also from Fort Donelson at Dover. If you can occupy the road to Dover, you can prevent the latter. The steamers will give you the means of crossing from one side of the river to the other. It is said that there is a masked battery opposite the island, below Fort Henry. If this cannot be avoided or turned, it must be taken.

Having invested Fort Henry, a cavalry force will be sent forward to break up the railroad from Paris to Dover. The bridges should be rendered impassable, but not destroyed. [586]

A telegram from Washington says that Beauregard left Manassas four days ago, with fifteen regiments for the line of Columbus and Bowling Green. It is, therefore, of the greatest importance that we cut that line before he arrives. You will move with the least delay possible. You will furnish Commodore Foote with a copy of this letter. A telegraph line will be extended as rapidly as possible from Paducah, east of Tennessee river, to Fort Henry. Wires and operators will be sent from St. Louis.

H. W. Halleck, Major-General.

headquarters, Department of the Missouri, St. Louis, February 1, 1862.
Brigadier-General U. S. Grant, Cairo, Ill.:
You are authorized to withdraw Colonel Ross's regiment, Seventeenth Illinois volunteers, from Cape Girardeau for the Tennessee expedition as soon as they are wanted. The remaining forces are sufficient for that place. Your requisitions for horses, mules, wagons, etc., cannot be filled immediately. By using steamers on the river, and as the troops will not move far from their supplies and water transportation, much of the usual trains can be dispensed with for several weeks. Don't cumber up the expedition with too large a train. The object is to move rapidly and promptly by steamers, and to reduce the place before any large reenforcements can arrive.

H. W. Halleck, Major-General.

Field order for attack on Fort Henry.

General field orders, no. 1.

headquarters, District of Cairo, camp in field near Fort Henry, February 5, 1862.
The First division, General John A McClernand commanding, will move at eleven o'clock A. M. to morrow, under the guidance of Lieutenant-Colonel McPherson, and take a position on the roads from Fort Henry to Fort Donelson and Dover.

It will be the special duty of this command to prevent all Reenforcements to Fort Henry or escape from it. Also, to be [587] held in readiness to charge and take Fort Henry by storm, promptly, on the receipt of orders.

Two brigades of the Second division, General C. F. Smith commanding, will start at the same hour from the west bank of the river, and take and occupy the heights commanding Fort Henry. This point will be held by so much artillery as can be made available, and such other troops as in the opinion of the general commanding Second division may be necessary for its protection.

The Third brigade, Second division, will advance up the east bank of the Tennessee river, as fast as it can be securely done, and be in readiness to charge upon the fort, or move to the support of the First division, as may be necessary.

All of the forces on the west bank of the river, not required to hold the heights commanding Fort Henry, will return to their transports, cross the river, and follow the First division as rapidly as possible.

The west bank of the Tennessee river not having been reconnoitred, the commanding officer intrusted with taking possession of the enemy's works there, will proceed with great caution, and such information as can be gathered, and such guides as can be found in the time intervening before eleven o'clock to-morrow.

The troops will move with two days rations of bread and meat in their haversacks.

One company of the Second division, armed with rifles, will be ordered to report to Flag-Officer Foote, as sharpshooters, on board the gunboats.

By order:

U. S. Grant, Brigadier-General commanding.

Grant's Report of capture of Fort Henry.

headquarters, District of Cairo, Fort Henry, February 6, 1862.
Captain J. C. Kelton, St. Louis, Mo.:
Enclosed I send you my orders for the attack upon Fort Henry.

Owing to dispatches received from Major-General Halleck, and corroborating information here, to the effect that the enemy were rapidly reenforcing, I thought it imperatively necessary [588] that the fort should be carried to-day. My forces were not up at eleven o'clock last night, when my orders were written, therefore I did not deem it practicable to set an earlier hour than eleven o'clock to-day to commence the investment. The gunboats started the same hour to commence the attack, and engaged the enemy at not over six hundred yards.

In a little over one hour all the batteries were silenced, and the fort surrendered at discretion to Flag-Officer Foote, giving us all their guns, camp equipage, etc. The prisoners taken were General Tilghman and staff, Captain Taylor and company, and the sick. The garrison, I think, must have commenced the retreat last night, or at an early hour this morning. Had I not felt it an imperative duty to attack Fort Henry to-day, I should have made the investment complete, and delayed until to-morrow, so as to have secured the garrison. I do not now believe, however, that the result would have been any more satisfactory.

The gunboats have proved themselves well able to resist a severe cannonading. All the iron-clads received more or less shots — the flag-ship some twenty-eight-without any serious damage to any except the Essex. This vessel received one shot in her boilers that disabled her, killing and wounding some thirty-two men, Captain Porter among the wounded.

I shall take and destroy Fort Donelson on the 8th, and return to Fort Henry with the forces employed, unless it looks possible to occupy the place with a small force, that could retreat easily to the main body. I shall regard it more in the light of an advanced grand guard than as a permanent post.

For the character of the works at Fort Henry, I will refer you to reports of the engineers, which will be required.

Owing to the intolerable state of the roads, no transportation will be taken to Fort Donelson, and but little artillery, and that with double teams.

Hoping that what has been done will meet with the approval of the major-general commanding the department, I remain, etc.

U. S. Grant, Brigadier-General.


Field order for March to Fort Donelson.

General field orders, no. 7.

headquarters, District of Cairo, Fort Henry, February 10, 1862.
The troops from Forts Henry and Heiman will hold themselves in readiness to move on Wednesday, the 12th instant, at as early an hour as practicable. Neither tents nor baggage will be taken, except such as the troops can carry. Brigade and regimental commanders will see that all their men are supplied with forty rounds of ammunition in their cartridge-boxes, and two days rations in their haversacks. Three days additional rations may be put in wagons to follow the expedition, but will not impede the progress of the main column.

Two regiments of infantry will remain at Fort Henry, to be designated from the First division, and one brigade at Fort Heiman, Kentucky, to be designated by General Smith commanding.

By order of

Brigadier-General Grant. John A. Rawlins, Assistant Adjutant-General.

Second field order for March to Fort Donelson.

General field orders, no. 11.

headquarters, District of Cairo, Fort Henry, Tennessee, February 10, 1862.
The troops designated in General Field Orders, No. 7, will move to-morrow as rapidly as possible in the following order:

One brigade of the First division will move by the Telegraph road, directly, upon Fort Donelson, halting for further orders, at a distance of two miles from the fort. The other brigades of the First division will move by the Dover or Ridge road and halt at the same distance from the fort, and throw out troops so as to form a continuous line, between the two wings.

The two brigades of the Second division, now at Fort Henry, will follow as rapidly as practicable, by the Dover road and will be followed by the troops from Fort Heiman, as fast as they can be ferried across the river.

One brigade of the Second division should be thrown into [590] Dover to cut off all retreat by the river, if found practicable to do so.

The force of the enemy being so variously reported, it is impossible to give exact details of attack, but the necessary orders will be given on the field.

By order of

Brigadier-General U. S. Grant, commanding. John A. Rawlins, Assistant Adjutant-General.

General Buckner to General Grant.

headquarters, Fort Donelson, February 16, 1862.
sir: In consideration of all the circumstances governing the present situation of affairs at this station, I propose to the commanding officer of the Federal forces, the appointment of commissioners, to agree upon terms of capitulation of the forces and post under my command, and in that view suggest an armistice until twelve o'clock to-day.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

S. B. Buckner, Brigadier-General C. S. A. To Brigadier-General U. S. Grant, commanding United States Forces near Fort Donelson.

Order of General Buckner.

headquarters, Fort Donelson, February 16, 1862.
Major Crosby will take or send by an officer to the enemy the accompanying communication to General Grant, and request information of the point where further communications will reach him. Also inform him that my headquarters will be for the present in Dover.

Have the white flag hoisted on Fort Donelson, not on the batteries.

S. B. Buckner, Brigadier-General.


General Grant to General Buckner.

Headquarters, army in the field, Fort Donelson, February 16, 1862.
General S. B. Buckner, Confederate Army:
sir: Yours of this date proposing armistice and appointment of commissioners to settle terms of capitulation, is just received. No terms except unconditional and immediate surrender can be accepted. I propose to move immediately upon your works.

I am, sir, very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

U. S. Grant, Brigadier-General commanding.

General Buckner to General Grant.

headquarters, Dover, Tennessee, February 16, 1862.
To Brigadier-General Grant, United States Army:
sir: The distribution of the forces under my command, incident to an unexpected change of commanders, and the overwhelming force under your command, compel me, notwithstanding the brilliant success of the Confederate arms yesterday, to accept the ungenerous and unchivalrous terms which you propose. I am, sir, your very obedient servant,

S. B. Buckner, Brigadier-General commanding C. S. A.

Message from Mr. Jefferson Davis to his Congress.

Executive Department, March 11, 1862.
To the Speaker of the House of Representatives:
I transmit herewith copies of such official reports as have been received at the War Department of the defence and fall of Fort Donelson.

They will be found incomplete and unsatisfactory. Instructions have been given to furnish further information upon the several points not made intelligible by the reports. It is not stated that reenforcements were at any time asked for; nor is it demonstrated to have been impossible to have saved the army by evacuating the position; nor is it known by what [592] means it was found practicable to withdraw a part of the garrison, leaving the remainder to surrender; nor upon what authority or principles of action the senior generals abandoned responsibility by transferring the command to a junior officer.

In a former communication to Congress, I presented the propriety of a suspension of judgment in relation to the disaster at Fort Donelson, until official reports could be received. I regret that the information now furnished is so defective. In the mean time, hopeful that satisfactory explanation may be made, I have directed, upon the exhibition of the case as presented by the two senior generals, that they should be relieved from command, to await further orders whenever a reliable judgment can be rendered on the merits of the case.

Grant's Report of the capture of Fort Donelson.

headquarters, District of West Tennessee, Fort Donelson, February 16, 1862.
Brigadier-General George W. Cullum, Chief of Staff Department of the Missouri:
I am pleased to announce to you the unconditional surrender, this morning, of Fort Donelson, with twelve to fifteen thousand prisoners, at least forty pieces of artillery, and a large amount of stores, horses, mules, and other public property.

I left Fort Henry on the 12th instant, with a force of about fifteen thousand men, divided into two divisions, under the command of Generals McClernand and Smith. Six regiments were sent around by water the day before, convoyed by a gunboat (or boats), and with instructions not to pass it.

The troops made the march in good order, the head of the column arriving within two miles of the fort at twelve o'clock M. At this point the enemy's pickets were met and driven in. The fortifications of the enemy were from this point gradually approached and surrounded, with occasional skirmishing on the line. The following day, owing to the non-arrival of the gunboats and reenforcements sent by water, no attack was made, but the investment was extended on the flanks of the enemy, and drawn closer to his works, with skirmishing all day. On the evening of the 13th, the gunboats and reenforcements [593] arrived. On the 14th, a gallant attack was made by Flag-Officer Foote upon the enemy's river batteries with his fleet. The engagement lasted probably one hour and a half, and bid fair to result favorably, when two unlucky shots disabled two of the armored boats, so that they were carried back by the current. The remaining two were very much disabled also, having received a number of heavy shots about the pilothouses and other parts of the vessels. After these mishaps, I concluded to make the investment of Fort Donelson as perfect as possible, and partially fortify, and await repairs to the gunboats. This plan was frustrated, however, by the enemy making a most vigorous attack upon our right wing, commanded by Brigadier-General J. A. McClernand, and which consisted of his division and a portion of the force under General L. Wallace.

The enemy were repelled, after a closely contested battle of several hours, in which our loss was heavy. The officers suffered out of proportion. I have not the means of determining our loss, even approximately, but it cannot fall far short of twelve hundred killed, wounded, and missing. Of the latter, I understand, through General Buckner, about two hundred and fifty were taken prisoners. I shall retain here enough of the enemy to exchange for them, as they were immediately shipped off, and not left for recapture.

About the close of this action the ammunition and cartridge-boxes gave out, which, with the loss of many of the field officers, produced great confusion in the ranks. Seeing that the enemy did not take advantage of it, convinced me that equal confusion, and, consequently, great demoralization, existed with him. Taking advantage of this fact, I ordered a charge upon the left (enemy's right) with the division under General C. F. Smith, which was most brilliantly executed, and gave to our arms full assurance of victory. The battle lasted until dark, and gave us possession of part of the intrenchment. An attack was ordered from the other flank after the charge by General Smith was commenced, by the divisions under McClernand and Wallace, which, notwithstanding hours of exposure to a heavy fire in the fore part of the day, was gallantly made, and the enemy further repulsed. At the points thus gained, night having come on, all the troops encamped for the night, feeling that a complete victory would crown their efforts at an [594] early hour in the morning. This morning, at a very early hour, a note was received from General Buckner, under a flag of truce, proposing an armistice. A copy of the correspondence which ensued is herewith enclosed.

I could mention individuals who especially distinguished themselves, but will leave this to division and brigade commanders, whose reports will be forwarded as soon as received.

Of the division commanders, however, Generals Smith, Mc-Clernand, and Wallace, I must do the justice to say that all of them were with their commands in the midst of danger, and were always ready to execute all orders, no matter what the exposure to themselves.

At the hour the attack was made on General McClernand's command, I was absent, having received a note from Flag-Officer Foote, requesting me to go and see him, he being unable to call on me, in consequence of a wound received the day before.

My staff, Colonel J. D. Webster, First Illinois artillery, chief of staff; Captain J. A. Rawlins, assistant adjutant-general; First Lieutenants C. B. Lagow and William S. Hillyer, aides; and Lieutenant-Colonel J. B. McPherson, chief engineer, and Colonel John Riggin, junior, volunteer aide, are all deserving of personal mention for their gallantry and services.

For details, see reports of engineers, medical director, and commanders of divisions and brigades, to follow.

U. S. Grant, Brigadier-General.

Grant's congratulatory order after the capture of Fort Donelson.

General orders, no. 2.

headquarters, District of West Tennessee, Fort Donelson, February 17, 1862.
The general commanding takes great pleasure in congratulating the troops of this command for the triumph over rebellion gained by their valor on the 13th, 14th, and 15th inst.

For four successive nights, without shelter during the most inclement weather known in this latitude, they faced an enemy in large force in a position chosen by himself. Though strongly fortified by nature, all the safeguards suggested by science were [595] added. Without a murmur this was borne, prepared at all times to receive an attack, and with continuous skirmishing by day, resulting ultimately in forcing the enemy to surrender without conditions.

The victory achieved is not only great in breaking down rebellion, but has secured the greatest number of prisoners of war ever taken in one battle on this continent.

Fort Donelson will hereafter be marked in capitals on the maps of our united country, and the men who fought the battle will live in the memory of a grateful people.

U. S. Grant, Major-General commanding.

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