thousand State militia, capturing three-fourths of them, and dispersing the
remainder. lie then moved without a halt through Salisbury and Palmyra
to Salem, where he destroyed the railroad bridge and track and a vast
amount of public stores. Then taking the road to Lexington, after riding
all night, he reached that point at daylight, capturing a number of sup-
plies, and destroying during the night the depot and track at Yienna, on
the Jeffersonville and Indianapolis Railroad. Leaving Lexington, he
passed on north to the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad near Yernon, where,
442 THE LOST CAUSE,
fiDding Gen. Manson with a lieavy force of infantry, he skirmished with
him two hours as a feint, while the main command moved round the town
to Dupont, where squads were sent out to cut the roads between Vernon
and Seymour on the west, Vernon and Lawrenceburg on the east, Vernon
and Madison on the south, and Vernon and Columbus on the north.
From Vernon Gen. Morgan proceeded to Versailles, capturing five
hundred militia there and gathering on the road. IVom Versailles he
moved without interruption across to Harrison, Ohio, destroying the track
and burning small bridges on the Lawrenceburg and Indianapolis Rail-
road. At Harrison he burned a fine bridge. Leaving Harrison at dusk,
he moved around Cincinnati, passing between that city and Hamilton, de-
stroying the railroad, and a scout running the Federal pickets into the city,
the whole command marched within seven miles of it. Daylight of the
14th found him eighteen miles east of Cincinnati.
The adventurous commander had now performed a Avonderful circuit ;
he had traversed two enormous States, destroying property, probably to
the extent of ten millions of dollars ; he had cut an entire net of railroads ;
he had paroled nearly six thousand prisoners, and thrown several millions
of people into frantic consternation. He had done his work, and the
anxiety now was to escape. It was no easy matter. The country had
been aroused, and it was reported that twenty-five thousand men were un-
dei- arms to pursue or to intercept " the bloody invader."
After passing Cincinnati, the jaded command of Confederates proceeded
towards Dennison, and making a feint there, struck out for the Ohio.
Daily were they delayed by the annoying cry of " Axes to the front," a
cry that warned them of busliwackers, ambuscades, and blockaded roads.
It appeared that every hillside contained an enemy and every ravine s
blockade. It was not until the evening of the 19th July, that the com-
mand, dispirited and worn down, reached the river at a ford above
At 4 p. M., two companies were thrown across the river, and were in-
stantly opened upon by the enemy. A scout of three htmdred men were
sent down the river a half mile, who reported back that they had found a
small force behind rifle-pits, and asked permission to charge. The rifle-
pits were charged, and one hundred and fifty prisoners captured. A
courier, arriving about the same time, reported that a gunboat had ap-
proached near our battery, and upon being fired upon had retired pre-
Gen. Morgan finding this report correct, and believing that he had
sufficient time to cross the command, was using every exertion to accom-
plish the task, when sinmltaneously could be heard the discharge of artil-
lery from down the river — a heavy, drumming sound of small arms in the
rear and right ; and soon from the banks of the river, came up three black
CAPTUKE OF JOHN MOKGAK. 443
eolamns of infantry, firing upon our men, who were in close column, prepar-
ing to cross. Seeing tliat tlie enemy liad every advantage of position, an
overwhelming force of infantry and cavalry, and that his men wei'c becom-
ing completely environed, the command- was ordered by Gen. Morgan to
move up tlie river double-quick. Three companies of dismounted men, and
perhaps two hundred sick and wounded were left in the enemy's povsses-
Bion. The bulk of the command pressed rapidly to Belleville, about foui'^
teen miles, on a running fight, and commenced fording, or rather swim-
ing, at that point. Three hundred and thirty men had eflfccted a crossing,
when again the enemy's gunboats were upon them — one iron-clad and two
transports. It was a terrible adventure now to cross the river ; but even
under the hot fire a party of officers, headed by Col. Adam li. Johnson,
plunged into the stream, and commenced the struggle of life and death.
Of the fearful scene which ensued, one of the party writes : " Tlie Colonel's
noble mare falters, strikes out again, and boldly makes the shore. Wood-
son follows. My poor mare, being too weak to carry me, turned over, and
commenced going down ; encumbered by clothing, sabre, and pistols, I
made but poor progress in the turbid stream. An inherent love of life
actuated me to continue swimming. Behind me I heard the piercing call
of young Rogers for help ; on my right, Capt. Helm was appealing to me
for aid ; and in the rear my friend, Capt. McClain, was sinking. Grad-
ually the gunboat was nearing me. Should I be able to hold up until it
came ; and would I then be saved to again undergo the horrours of a
Federal bastile ? But I hear something behind me snorting ! I feel it
passing ! Thank God ! I am saved ! A riderless horse dashes by ;
I grasp his tail ; onward he bears me, and the shore is reached. Col.
Johnson, on reaching the shore, seizes a ten-inch piece of board, jumps into
a leaky skiflf, and starts back to aid the drowning. He reaches Capt.
Helm, but Capt. McClain and young liogers are gone."
Gen. Morgan was not of the fortunate party that escaped across the
river. "With two hundred of his men he broke through the enemy's lines
on the north side of the Ohio, and continued his flight in the direction of
ISTew Lisbon, with the design of reaching the river higher up. Forces were
despatched to head him ofi", and the brave cavalier, who had so often given
occasion of surprise and mystery to the enemy, was, at last, brought to bay
at a point on the river where there was no escape, except by fighting his
way through, or leaping from a lofty and almost pei"peudicular precipice.
Here he surrendered himself and the remnant of his command.
Of the infamous treatment of this distinguished captive and his com-
rades, the following memorandum was made in the War Department at
Richmond, signed by Lieut.-Col. Alston, as a personal witness : " They
were carried to Cincinnati, and from thence he [Gen. Morgan] and twenty-
eight of his ofticers were selected and carried to Columbus, Ohio, where
444 THE LOST CATTSE.
they were shaved and their hair cut very close by a negro convict. They
were then marched to the bath room, and scrubbed, and from there to their
cells where they were locked up. The Federal papers published, with
great delight, a minute account of the whole proceedings. Seven days
afterwards, forty-two more of Gen. Morgan's officers were conveyed from
Johnson's Island to tJie ijeniU^itlary ^ and subjected to the same in-
But these hardships and outrages did not break the spirit of these brave
men. The very officer who made the memorandum quoted above, dared
to write in his jail-journal this sentiment of defiance : " There are a hun-
dred thousand men in the South who feel as I do, that they would rather
an earthquake should swallow the whole country then yield to our oppres-
sors — men who will retire to the mountains and live on acorns, and crawl
Dn their bellies to shoot an invader wherever they can see one."
SUKEENDER OF CUMBERLAND GAP.
In the month of September occurred the surrender of Cumberland Gap
— a misfortune which President Davis declared " laid open Eastern Tennes-
see and Southwestern Yirginia to hostile operations, and broke the line of
communication between the seat of Government and Middle Tennessee "
— and an event which some of the Richmond papers characterized as " one
of the most disgraceful of the war." These serious charges demand a
close investigation of the subject ; and it will be seen that Cumberland
Gap is but another instance in which such charges, on a detail of facts, re-
coil upon the Eichmond Administration itself.
About the last of August, 1863, the Federal forces under Gen. Burn-
side, entered Tennessee, and occupied Knoxville on the 2d September. A
large part of these forces passed through the Cumberland Mountains from
Kentucky into Tennessee at Big Creek Gap, forty miles south of Cumber-
land Gap, which latter position was held by Gen. Frazier for the Confed-
erates. On the 21st August, Gen. Buckner, who was in command of the
Confederate forces in East Tennessee, ordered Gen. Frazier to hold " the
Gap," which was an important protection to that country and to South-
western Yirginia ; stating, moreover, that if the enemy broke through be-
tween this post and Big Creek Gap — the left and rear of Gen. Frazier — he
(Buckner)would check them. Tliis despatch left Gen. Frazier under the
impression that he would be protected in his rear. But on the 30th
August Gen. Buckner again despatched to Frazier to evacuate the Gap
with all speed, to burn and destroy everything that could not be trans-
ported, and to report to Gen. S. Jones at Abingdon, Yirginia, one hundred
and twenty-five miles distant.
DEFENCES OF CUMBEKLAND GAP. 445
Gen. Frazier was not satisfied of the genuineness of tliis order ; lie sus-
pected some trick of the enemj ; he had been left under the recent and
emphatic impression that East Tennessee was to be held ; and he tele-
graphed in cipher to Gen. Buckner, stating that he had about forty days'
rations, that he believed he could hold the position, and asking to be in-
formed if his superiour insisted upon the order of evacuation. The order
was countermanded within twenty-four hours, and Buckner's last instruc-
tions were to hold the Gap.
Knoxville had at this time been abandoned ; and Gen. Buckner and
his forces were at Loudon, about thirty miles southwest of Knoxville, at
the crossing of the Ilolstein or Tennessee River. Gen. Frazier prepared
for a vigorous defence of the Gap. It was not the " easily defensible
pass " which President Davis declared it to be. There were three public
roads uniting in it : the Virginia Road, leading eastward to Powell's Val-
ley ; the Kentucky Road, running through the Gap from Knoxville into
Kentucky ; and the Harlan Road, leading along the north side of the
mountain. In consequence of the broken nature of the country, declivities,
ravines, etc., the artillery commanded these roads very imperfectly. The
Kentucky Road to the south at various points in its windings could be
reached within range of the guns ; but neither of the other roads could be
commanded with artillery for a greater distance than about four hundred
yards. Batteries were placed to defend these approaches. But the char-
acter of the ground permitted an enemy to approach in many directions
over the spaces between the roads. Tlie line of proper outward defences
for the force in Gen. Frazier's command was about two miles in circuit,
which comprised the various rifle-pits placed at irregular intervals, as the
surface indicated proper points for their location on or near the summit of
the mountain. An unfinished block -house in an isolated position, about a
mile and a half from the Gap, was defended by one gun. This position
had a limited command of the space around it, owing to the steep declivity
and broken ground ; but as it commanded the works of the Gap, it was
important to prevent its occupation by the enemy. The rifle-pits and ar-
tillery epaulements were very incomplete, owing to the rocky nature of the
ground, the want of tools, and blasting powder, and the small force of
workmen that could be S2")ared from other necessary duties. There were
several approaches to the Gap by ravines and depressions thi'ough which
an enemy could throw a large force under cover of darkness or heavy fog.
The chief defences had been prepared to meet a force on the north side ;
and these were the reliance of Gen. Frazier when he expressed the opinion
that he would be able to hold the position, as he anticipated an attack oidy
from that direction.
Ten thousand men should have been assigned for the permanent de-
fence of this position. The tact was that the force at Gen. Frazier's com-
446 THE LOST CAUSE.
mand amounted to seventeen hundred men, with one hundred rounds of
ammunition. Of the situation, Gen. Frazier writes : ^^ I will express the
opinion arrived at, after a full knowledge of all the conditions, gained dur-
ing a month, that an assaulting force, equal to the garrison could carry it
as easily as the ojpen field, if guided, or informed of its weak points, by
disaffected persons in the vicinity — especially during the prevalence of
fogs, which greatly demoralized tlie men, who were unaccustomed to ser-
vice and had never been in action."
On the 4th September, Gen, Frazier was informed that the enemy was
in possession of Knoxville, and had started a heavy force towards the Gap,
and was running the cars to Morristown, within forty miles of his post.
He was also informed that a large force, said to be sixteen regiments and
two trains of artillery, were at Barboiirsville, Kentucky, en route for the
Gap. JSTot believing that so large a force of the enemy would be sent
against him from Knoxville until after successful engagement with Gen.
Buckner, Gen. Frazier sent a cavalry regiment to meet the force said to
be advancing from Knoxville, engage it, and uncover its strength. This
force of cavalry, six hundred strong, was cut off, and compelled to retreat
to Jonesville, thirty-six miles distant.
On the Ttli September, Gen. Shackleford, who had approached the Gap
from the south side, demanded its surrender. On the following day, Col.
De Coney, who had come up with a brigade on the Kejitucky side, made
the same demand on his part.
During the afternoon of the 8th September, Gen, Frazier assembled his
regimental commanders, and had an informal conference with them.
Tliere was no council of war, and no votes were taken. There was a divi-
sion of opinion as to the course to be pursued, but the officers separated on
the final understanding to make a determined defence and with the expec-
tation that Gen, Buckner would soon relieve the garrison.
On the 9th September reinforcements joined the enemy on the Tennes-
see side, and Gen. Frazier received a summons to surrender from Gen.
Burnside himself. He had also received information about this time that
the Confederate forces at Loudon Bridge had burned the bridge, and that
Buckner had retreated towards Chattanooga. Gen. Burnside's presence
at the Gap, so unexpected, was deemed by the garrison sufficient proof
that he had nothing to fear from the Confederate forces further south, and
that all hope of succour from Gen. Buckner was at an end. In the after-
noon of the preceding day. Gen. Frazier had received a despatch from
Gen. S. Jones, commanding at Abingdon, Yirginia, to the effect that ho
should not give up the Gap without a stubborn resistance, and that he
would send a force which he thought strong enough to relieve the garrison.
Of what ensued on the reception of this despatch, Gen. Frazier gives
the following explanation : " I asked the courier if any troops had arrived
BATTLE OF CHICKAMAUGA. 447
at Abingdon, or if it was known there that Gen. Biickner had burned Lou-
don Bridge and retreated south, and also if they knew that Gen. Burnside
had moved north with a large force. He replied, that there were no
troops in Abingdon, but some were expected, and that they were ignorant
of recent operations in Eastern Tennessee. I thus perceived that Gen.
Jones was ignorant of my situation, and. of the enemy's late movements,
and knowing that the entire force under Gen. Jones could not cope suc-
cessfully with Gen, Burnside, and that Gen. Lee could not reinforce him
to any extent, as Gen. Meade was reported as pressing him, in East Vir-
ginia, I concluded, if Gen. Jones should attempt to relieve me, that the
relieving force would be destroyed, and the occupation of the Virginia salt
works follow, of course. The despatch of Gen. Jones referred to I de-
stroyed, fearing it might fall into the hands of the enemy, show the weak-
ness of Gen. Jones, and lead to an attack upon him to destroy these salt
works, I thus perceived that my command could effect nothing by a tem-
porary resistance, and that even could I hope to cut my way out, and at-
tempt an escape up the valley, I should be thwarted in the attempt Avith-
out artillery or cavalry, as the enemy had a formidable force of these arms,
and could cut me up, or capture my forces in detail. I also reflei^ted, that
such a step, if partially successful, would draw the enemy towards j^bing-
don, and probably result in extending their operations to that place ; when
a surrender of the Gap would probably satisfy his desire for conquest at
About midday of the 9th September, Gen. Burnside sent in a second
demand for surrender, stating that sufficient time for consultation had been
allowed, and that he had a force large enough to carry the position by
assault, and wished to spare the eft'usion of blood. After an attempt to
maketerms, Gen. Frazier surrendered unconditionally.
The occupation of Cumberland Gap gave Burnside an uninterrupted
line of communication from Knoxville to Chattanooga, and opened the way
to the consummation of the plan of the enemy, which was to move against
Chattanooga on a double line of operations, and make there a new and
formidable front directly against the heart of the Confederacy.
THE BATTLE OF CHICKAMAUGA.
Chattanooga is one of the great gate-ways through the mountains to
the champaign country of Georgia and Alabama. It is situated at the
mouth of the valley formed by Lookout Mountain and the Missionary
Ridge. The first-named eminence is a vast palisade of rocks, rising
twenty-four hundred feet above the level of the sea, in abrupt, rocky clifis,
from a steep, wooded base. East of Missionary Ridge is another valley,
448 THE LOST CAUSE.
following the course of Chickamauga Creek, and having its head in
Immediately after crossing the mountains to the Tennessee E.iver, Eose-
craus, who %vas moving with a force of effective infantry and artillery,
amounting to fully seventy thousand men, threw a corps by way of Se-
quatchie Yalley — a caiion or deep cut sp)Iitting the Cumberh\nd range
parallel — hoping to strike the rear of Gen. Buckner's command, whilst
Burnside occupied him in front. Buckner, however, was directed by
Gen. Bragg to withdraw to the Hiawassee ; and the enemy then com-
menced a movement against the Confederate left and rear, showing plainly
that he intended a flank march towards Rome.
To save the State of Georgia, Chattanooga had to be abandoned. Gen.
Bragg, having now united with him the forces of Buckner, evacuated
Chattanooga on the Yth September, and, after a severe march through the
dust, which was ankle deep, took position from Lee and Gordon's Mill to
Lafayette, on the road leading south from Chattanooga, and fronting the
east slope of Lookout Mountain.
Gen. Bragg's effective force, exclusive of cavalry, was a little over
thirty-five thousand jnen. But in view of the great conflict that was to
ensue, Gen. Longstreet's corps was on the way from Virginia to reinforce
him, and with this prospect it was determined to meet the enemy in front,
whenever he should emerge from the mountain gorges. During the 9th
September, it was ascertained that Eosecrans, supposing that Bragg was
retreating, had pressed on his columns to intercept him, thus exposing him-
self in detail, and that a large force of Thomas' corps was moving up McLe-
more's Cove. Cheatham's division was moved rapidly forward to Lafay-
ette in front ; a portion of D. II. Hill's corps occupied Catlett's Gap in
Pigeon Mountain (a spur of Lookout, about fifteen miles frora Clmtta-
nooga), fianking the enemy on his right ; while Gen. Hindman, in conjunc-
tion wath Hill, was ordered to attack the enemy immediately in the
The attack was delayed ; a day was lost, and with it the opportunity
of crushing a column of the enemy ; and wdien Hindman, with whom Gen.
D. H. Hill had contumaciously refused to co-operate, and who had there-
fore to await the junction of Buckner's command, was at last ready to
move, Thomas had discovered his errour, retreated to the mountain passes,
and thus rescued the Federal centre from the exposed position in McLe-
To understand the advance of Rosecrans' army, it would seem that
Thomas' and McCook's corps crossed the Tennessee at Bridgeport, march-
ing over Sand Mountain into "Will's Yalley, and thence down McLemore's
Cove in the direction of Lafayette. Crittenden's corps had crossed above
Chattanooga at Harrison's, and was moved in the direction of Ringgold.
BAITLE OF CHICKAMAUGA. 449
A portion of Parke's corps of Burnside's array, and a brigade of his cavalry,
came down from Knoxville to Loudon and Cleveland.
A council of war was held by Gen. Bragg at Lafayette, on the 15th,
and it w^as resolved to advance towards Chattanooga, and attack the enemy
wherever he could be found. By tlie 19th he had moved his army by
divisions, and crossed it at several fords of the Chickainauga, and bridges
north of Lee and Gordon's Mills. Longstreet had reached Ringgold in
the afternoon of the same day. The reinforcements wliicli he l>rought
were five brigades of his corps, about five thousand eiFective infantry and
no artillery. It was contemplated by Gen. Bragg to make a flank move-
ment, and turn the enemy's left, so as to get his forces between him and
Chattanooga, and thus cut off his retreat, believing that the main force of
the enemy was at Lee and Gordon's Mills, and upon which he had intend-
ed to move. But he was anticipated ; and as he was preparing for the
movement the enemy commenced a counter-attack, Thomas' corps making
a desperate efibrt to turn the right wing of the Confederates. The attack
was gallantly met by Walker's division, whose troops broke through two
lines, and captured two batteries. But the enemy was largely reinforced
here, and hurrying forward his multiplied numbers to recover his lost
ground, when Cheatham, who had been in reserve, moved forward with
his veterans, and met the shock of battle. It was a terrible, doubtful, and
long encounter. Our lines wavered before the desperate struggle of the
enemy, and for three hours the fight was kept up with varied success.
It was near sunset when Cleburne — " the Stonewall Jackson of the
West " — who commanded a division in Hill's coi-ps, passed to the front
over the bloody ground that had been so stubbornly contested by Cheat-
ham, charging the enemy up to the very breastworks. A crashing fire
of musketry from the enemy made Cleburne's men reel, when forward
dashed his batteries, and opened a terrific fire on the enemy's works, while
the division charged with such impetuosity that the enemy recoiled, and
were driven half a mile from their line of battle.
That night the Confederate troops slept on the field surrounded by the
deax3. ISTo cheerful fire dispelled the gloom, and profound silence brooded
over the field of carnage.
Tlie proper commanders were summoned by Gen. Bragg, and received
specific information and instructions touching the disposition of the troops
for the grand and decisive action of the next da}'. Tlie whole force was
divided for the next morning into two commands, and assigned to the two
senior Lieut.-Generals, Longstreet and Polk : the former on the left,
where all his own troo])S were stationed, the latter continuing his command
of the right. Lieut.-Gen. Longstreet reached Gen. Bragg's headquarters
about 11 p. M., and immediately received his instructions. After a fe^^
hours' rest, he moved at daylight to his line just in front of Bragg's posi-
450 THE LOST CAUSE.
tion. Lieut.-Gen. Polk was ordered to assail tlie enemy on tlie extreme
right at daj-dawn on the 20th, and to take up the attack in succession
rapidly to tlie left. The left wing was to await the attack by the right,
take it up promptly when made, and the whole line was then to be
pushed vigorously and persistently against the enemy throughout its extent.
At dawn, Gen. Bragg was in the saddle, surrounded by his staff, eager-
ly listening for the sound of Polk's guns. The sun rose, and was mounting
the sky, and still there was no note of attack from the right wing. Pragg
chafed with impatience, and at last despatched one of his staff-officers,