Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

ful crestion. I beheld what I supposed to be a part of the breast and down to the limbs, throw. flag o. truce moving up Broadway, our principaling portions of his body fifteen feet distant. It business street. Starting at once to provide for is said that just before, and almost simultaneousthe safety of my fainily, believing that half an ly with the shell, a musket was fired at the hour at least would intervene before the battle Colonel by an ardent young African, which took would open, I was surprised to hear the sound effect in the forehead. of musketry as I made my way to my residence. The assault was gallantly repulsed, and the The battle had actually begun. Its sudden com- shout of victory arose from the fort. There mencement can be accounted for only upon the were other attempts to take it, but each time the presumption that the enemy's flag of truce was besieging hosts were driven back by the intrepid not a flag of truce, or at least was not respected boys at the fort, into whom now seemed to be by those who sent it, for Federal pickets were infused the indomitable courage and valor of fired on and prisoners taken before the flag could Colonel Hicks. possibly have reached its destination. Moreover, While the fort guns were at work most powerI am informed by Adjutant Taylor that when he fully and fatally upon the enemy around, two went to meet the flag, with his white handker- gunboats, the Peosta, (thirty-six,) Lieutenant chief waving, he was fired upon, and had to re- Shirk commanding, and the (thirty-two) treat. Thus the battle opened, leaving non-com- Captain O'Neil, poured an incessant torrent of batants, women, and children to make their es- shot and shell through the streets of the city cape through the rain of shot and shell, which upon the enemy, who were as busy as bees had been provoked by this strange and untimely plundering stores, gathering up horses, etc., attack.

mostly belonging to citizens; but few GovernOur forces consisted of the Sixteenth Kentucky ment horses being lost. cavalry, Major Barnes, two hundred and seventy; In addition to the plundering, the rebels fired three companies of the One Hundred and Twen- the large frame building on Broadway, built and ty-second Illinois infantry, Major Chapman, one used by the Government as quartermasters' hundred and two; and the first Kentucky heavy dépôt and office. They destroyed our railroad artillery, (corps d'Afrique,) Colonel Cunninghain, dépôt and a new boat upon the ways, both of two hundred and seventy-four ; total, six hun- which they knew to be the property of citizens. dred and forty-six. These were under the com- Four cars were burnt; the locomotives escaped. mand of the war-worn veteran Colonel S. G. They set fire to a few bales of cotton on the Hicks, who was severely wounded at the battle levee. A row of some six buildings, one of which of Shiloh.

was occupied as military headquarters, fronting The force of the rebels is believed to have con- the river, served as a lodgment for their sharpsisted of three brigades, under command of Major- shooters, who skilfully plied their art upon the General Forest; General Buford and Colonel A. lookouts and other openings upon the gunboats. P. Thompson's forces were among them. It A marine that showed his head was in great dan. turned out that Colonel A. P. Thompson had ger of losing it. Lieutenant Shirk at once disthe commission of Brigadier in his pocket. The covered the necessity of routing them, and sent robel forces were supported by the august pre- a few volleys into the buildings, which set them sence of his ex-Excellency Isham G. Harris o n fire.

After the battle had raged awhile, Colonel A dastardly thing in the sharp-shooters was Hicks received a message by flag of truce, in sub- the refuge they sought in a new boat upon the stance as follows, namely: That he (Colonel ways, filled with women and children. Thus Flicks) was assailed by an overwhelming force, protected by their sacred presence, they poured that resistance was useless, and, to prevent fur- their deadly missiles upon the gunboats with imther effusion of blood, he demanded the surren- punity. After a while they fired the boat and der of the fort, with all the Government property skedaddled, leaving women and children to find and stores at the post at Paducah; that if a sur- other quarters. render was made, Colonel Hicks and his forces Many business and dwelling-houses have sufshould be treated as prisoners of war, but if re- fered greatly from the shells of the gunboats, fused and the fort had to be taken by force of prominent among which are the Continental lloarms, no quarters would be given. Signed by tel, City Hotel, and Branch Bank of Louisville. Major-General Forrest. To this bold demand The latter is almost a mass of ruins, with its enColonel Hicks laconically replied that he had tire contents. Cashier S. B, Hughes and family been sent here by his Government to protect and resided in the building, but, fortunately, had esdefend the post, and his sense of duty and obli- caped. gation as a soldier forbade the surrender.

The entire Federal loss is fourteen killed, forThe battle was then renewed with vigor, a ty-six wounded, and perhaps thirty prisoners, spirited assault being made upon the fort by the taken from the hospitals. Kentucky rebel forces, under command of Colo! It is difficult to estimate the rebel loss, as their nel or General A. P. Thompson. In this fatal killed and wounded were mostly buried by themassault Colonel Thompson received his death. selves or taken off in their retreat. charge as suddenly and furiously as the proud Adjutant Taylor estimates their loss at three oak receives the thunder-bolt. A shell passed hundred killed, and the usual proportion of through his body, tearing to atoms the lower wounded.

Cairo advices from points passed on their re- in their reach. Why didn't they take the Peosta ? treat indicate heavier losses. One thing is cer- She didn't run. tain—they came, they saw, and they got most It is no light matter to have a vast crowd of terribly thrashed. They plundered dry-goods thousands, mostly women and children and inand shoe-stores extensively, and obtained a large valids, thrown together without a moment's prenumber of horses ; but merchandise and horses paration. For providing means of sustenance and have seldom been bought at so dear a price, illus- comfort for that immense, terror-stricken crowd trating the divine maxim, that the way of the much praise is due Captain Finley, who, at th transgressor is hard.

expense of his own feeble health, was hard a. The battle closed for the night at about eleven work for twenty-four hours, constantly on the o'clock. On the morning it was believed that alert to meet every necessity. Jo. Fowler, Y. the fight would be renewed, and Colonel Hicks Owen, and Aleck. Woolfolk gave their hearts determined to destroy the lodgment of their sharp- and hands freely to the work of providing for shooters by firing the buildings that had been the multitude. The busy little Blue Bird and or could be made useful to the enemy in that another small boat picked up many a little squad way. Thus some thirty or forty houses fell a of terrified sufferers from the river bank and ferprey to the flames and the stern necessities of ried them over during the night. The Blue Bird war. Many noble buildings, ornaments to our once ventured up too close to the concealed sharpthriving but unfortunate young city, were de- shooters, and had to fall back into the safe oid stroyed, in most instances with their entire con- rule of little boats not venturing too far. tents. The destruction of our gas-works is a The steamer Louisville arrived late in the night. sad affliction to us. The attack was so sudden, Captain Wolf, her commander, crowned himself and had been preceded by so many false alarms, and his boat all over with glory. Her state-rooms that few indeed were prepared for the shock. and larders were thrown open free of charge to

Colonel Hicks, himself, always acting upon the the weary, hungry multitude, and her wheels principle that eternal vigilance is the price of lib. were ever in motion to go where humanity and erty, surely could not have anticipated, though necessity required. The Louisville and Captain he so nobly repulsed the impetuous dash, as he Wolf will never be forgotten by the hundreds was fired at on his way from headquarters to the who took refuge there. Captain Wolf really fort.

| looked sorry when it was all over, for, although The pell-mell rush of citizens was of itself ter- his stores must have been exhausted, his benerific, and, to many, would doubtless have been volence shone yet full-orbed upon every suffering disastrous, but for the coolness, tact, self-posses: face. The high-headed Liberty No. 2 steamed sion, and untiring exertion of our most excellent up about eleven o'clock Saturday morning, yet Quartermaster, Captain J. A. Finley. After mak- in time to regale many an empty stomach; and ing the best possible disposition of such property what could have given that prince of steamboat as could not be removed to the river, records, pa- commanders, Captain Wes. Conner, more joy of pers, moneys, and other valuables, with his fam- heart than his ability to relieve the pangs of hunily, had to be taken care of. Moving them all ger under such dreadful circumstances? He to the large wharf-boat of J. H. Fowler & Co., gave all he had, and only looked sad when he which was now freighted with probably a thou had no more to give those homeless sufferers, sand frightened souls, and valuables of a public and then invited as many as desired to take free and private kind, he turned his eyes upon the passage on his boat. But we were all chained by confused mass of human beings, on boat and a magic spell to the point from which we could shore, that were crying for safety. In a moment behold our smoking homes. It is painful to turn he comprehended the responsibility and magni- from the praise of the benevolent to deal in cen. tude of the task. Assuming control of the vast sure, but the steamer New-Iowa deserves a passcrowd, with limited means of escape, forgetful of ing notice for the exorbitant charges which were self, he seemed to be the instrument in the hands extorted from all who partook of her hospitaliof Providence that saved us. Owens's ferry-boat, ties. Had Captain Finley been promptly notithe Blue Bird, was ordered alongside the wharf-fied, she would have been required, in the name boat. A coal-barge, upon which your humble of the United States, to be a little more consider. servant, with his family and many others, had ate and charitable. taken refuge, was ordered to drop down and Long live Colonel Hicks and the brave soldiers make fast to the ferry. Insufficiency of motive and marines who defended our city, and long power was a fearful question.

live Captain Finley and the other noble hearts Meantime the Peosta poured her streams of who contributed so fully and freely to the varied fire over and around us, causing an awful tremor necessities of a panic-stricken, afflicted, and hometo seize our vitals. All now ready, Captain Fin- less people.* ley ordered fastenings loosed, and heavily, like a huge leviathan, the trio of boats swing round,

ANOTHER NATIONAL ACCOUNT. the graceful Peosta withdrawing a little to give

PADUCAH, KY., April 4, 1864. us swing, and we were off to the opposite shore

There have been so many different and conjust in the nick of time : ten minutes later, and flicting versions of the recent fight at Paducah. we would have been in the hands of the rebels, Kentucky, published in the papers, that I have as they had ordered the destruction of every boat | * See Fort Pillow Massacre, Doc. 1, ante.

concluded, a; I was here a part of the time, and in coincidence that he lost his life by war in the sight of the place all the time, quorum fui pars, tragical manner he did, at the very place where to give you some reminiscences of it; now that he began his military career. the smoke of battle has entirely cleared away, Forrest is said to have been at the house of a the enemy have gone out of the country, and prominent citizen here, when he received Colonel we can ascertain definitely what has taken place. Hicks's reply to his demand for a surrender of

I have been informed by one of our prominent the Fort, and remarked: Damn him! I came officers here, who was in Fort Anderson and in here to take the place, and, by God! I mean to do the fight all the time, that our loss was fourteen it." So that it is useless for the rebels and their killed and forty-four wounded. As the rebels sympathizers to say now, in order to cover over carried off most of their dead and wounded, it is his disastrous defeat, that he came to obtain impossible to ascertain their exact loss; but it goods and supplies for his men, and merely made must have been enormous. This officer told the feints or demonstrations on the Fort to keep our writer that our artillery mowed them down, mak- men in it, until the rebels could obtain what ing lanes through their ranks, which, however, they wanted and get off with it, and did not care were immediately closed up by others. I was about taking the Fort. They evidently came to told that as many as thirty dead were counted in take the Fort and town, if they could, and had one heap and nineteen in another! Forrest, in they succeeded, they would have shot all the his retreat, told a lady in the country where he colored soldiers and their officers, held the place stopped (who related it to my informant, one of as long as they could, and stripped it of every our officers on a scout) that he lost three hun- thing valuable to them which they could have dred killed and one thousand wounded ; and as carried off. these rebel officers generally diininish instcad of I have it, on good authority, that Forrest said exaggerate their losses, his loss must have been his men had been in fifty fights before, but this greater-probably four hundred killed, and one was the severest and most disastrous repulse he thousand two hundred or one thousand five hun had ever met with. Although he carried off all dred wounded, as their wounded were said to the horses and mules he could find, stripping bave been strewn along the road, at almost every the livery-stables without any regard to the house on it, and they were engaged all night in loyalty or disloyalty of the owners, and a great hauling them away along the road. Many must deal of plunder, the raid has cost him dearly-far have been killed by our shells, which were thrown more than any advantages he has gained by it. into almost every part of the town; and many were some are fearful of another attack by the rebels, shot in houses froin which the rebel sharp-shoot- but I think there is little danger, and that their ers fired upon our men on the gunboats and in dear-bought "experience" will be sufficient to the Fort. I was told by the officer first referred prevent a repetition. They would, no doubt, to above, that he counted as many as fifteen bo- have plundered the town of a great deal more dies in one house, and more or less of their dead than they did, perhaps as much again, but the were found in almost every house burnt. gunboats soon made the place too hot to hold

Not only Forrest himself, but some of his offi- them. As proof of this, the stores of some of cers, (and I have it from the persons to whom it the strongest and most ultra Union men in the was said,) confessed that they had been deceived place were not touched, while they took thouby their friends here, in reference to the strength sands of dollars' worth of goods from those of of the Fort and the number of the garrison. They men considered rebel sympathizers, and some of had been told that the works were weak and not them the strongest in the place. at all formidable; and that the Fort was manned I must now speak of our own men. Colonel by some two hundred or three hundred soldiers, S. G. Hicks, the commander of this post, whose and a few raw recruits of the Seventeenth Ken- bravery and skill as an officer had been tested on tucky cavalry, without arms, and would be noth-battle-fields before, and who was wounded at ing to take!

Shiloh, deserves the highest praise for his galI was personally well acquainted, and had lant and heroic defence of the forts with a little been for several years before the rebellion, with handful of men-his whole force, including about the rebel General (formerly Colonel) Albert P. two hundred and fifty colored soldiers, under Thompson, who was killed while leading a charge command of Lieutenant-Colonel Richard Cun. on the Fort, within some forty yards of it. He ningham, amounting to not more than one thouwas a prominent and popular lawyer of Paducah, sand men in all, only half of whom fought at a and district-attorney, before the rebellion. When time—and certainly deserves promotion to a that broke out he joined the rebel army, and was brigadiership. Major W. L. Gibson, our Provostpromoted until he reached the rank of Colonel, Marshal, who had fought in the war with Mexiwhen he received a severe wound in the neck at co with great credit to himself, and who was the rebel attack on Baton Rouge, Louisiana, from at Donelson, Shiloh, and on other battle-fields, which he recovered. He was then promoted to fought with his usual distinguished coolness, the command (not rank, as I have been inform- calmness, and bravery; and Colonel Cunningham, ed) of Brigadier-General in the rebel army, under with brilliant daring and heroic courage; and Forrest. He appeared to have been killed by a the colored soldiers generally with the greatest shell, which exploded as it struck him, and tore enthusiasm and bravery, emulating the white bis body literally to pieces. It is a remarkablel soldiers and conducting themselves well all the

time. One of the most mortifying things to For. certain what damage had been done. Before we rest, connected with his terrible defeat here, must left, however, the Tycoon came down with a rebe the reflection that his men were whipped in port that firing had ceased, and the rebels had part by “nigger" soldiers, whom he had come gone. In the mean time, the Fourth division, to take and shoot, with their officers. Captain Sixteenth army corps, which had been here for H. Bartling, Deputy District Provost-Marshal, about a week, under command of General Veatch, under Captain Hall, and once Post Adjutant embarked on several steamers for Paducah, hophere, was severely wounded in one of his arms. ing to catch Forrest before he could get out of Sergeant Hays and one or two other officers the way. It is said that four thousand cavalry, were also wounded..

sent out by General Grierson from Memphis, are I must speak now, in the last place, of the in- in bis rear. An order was issued from headjuries sustained by our city, which suffered ter- quarters, Friday night, prohibiting the landing of ribly by the bombardment and conflagration. steamboats on the Kentucky side of the Ohio Nearly all of Front Row, below Broadway street, River, between Cairo and Paducah, and the crossincluding the headquarters building, was burnt. ing of skiffs from one side of the river to the Also all the houses in the vicinity of the Fort, other without a permit from some military officer. by order of Colonel Hicks, to stop the rebel We arrived at Metropolis at seven P.m., where sharp-shooters from getting up into them and we found a number of women and children, who picking our men off in the Fort. The gas-works had escaped from Paducah the day before. They were burnt, through a misunderstanding of the were seated around a fire on the bank of the rivorder of Colonel Hicks, who wished them pre. er, and apparently making the best of their conserved.

dition. Here we were told that shelling had The rebels burned the large new quartermas- again commenced at three o'clock, but it was ter building on Broadway, with the stores in it; supposed that the gunboats were trying to drive and also the railroad dépôt and cars. There the enemy out of the woods. At twelve m., it would not have been a single house on Front was said, a flag of truce had been sent in by street fired into by the gunboats had the rebel Forrest. Friday evening, a rebel, who tried to cut sharp-shooters kept out of them. As it is, every the telegraph, was shot dead. Captain Bawkhouse in that part of the city next the river man and Captain Crutchfield, of the Sixteenth bears the marks of shot and shell, and the effects Kentucky cavalry, were wounded in the head, of the bombardment are visible in almost every and Captain Bartley, in the arm. Sergeant T. part of it. The loss of the gas-works is much Hays, of the Fifteenth Kentucky cavalry, was to be regretted, so that our city is left "in dark- killed. Four white men and seven negroes in ness” as well as “in ruins.”

the Fort were killed. Twenty-five houses around

the Fort were destroyed by the Federals, beCHICAGO “TIMES” ACCOUNT.

cause they afforded shelter for sharp-shooters,

Cairo, March 27, 1865. who could fire directly into the fortification. At Last Friday night, information reached us that Metropolis, we learned that just before the enemy Forrest had made his appearance at Paducah at came into the city, all the citizens returned to two P.M., with two thousand men, and had be- the Fort, and remained there until Colonel Hicks gun an attack on that city. Colonel Hicks, informed them that he could not furnish arms for commander of the post, withdrew all his men, all, and those who desired to cross the river could some eight hundred, into the fort, and sent the do so. Accordingly, many got aboard of the citizens across the river to the Illinois side. The wharf-boat, which was towed by a ferry-boat to telegraph operator at Mound City said he could the opposite side of the river. As we approached see a great light in the direction of Paducah, and Paducah, we saw the camp-fires of these people supposed the city was in flames. General Bray- illuminating the river. Provisions were scarce man, being notified of this, sent up the Twenty- among them, but Colonel Hicks had just sent fifth Wisconsin to reën force the garrison. Satur- over a supply which had come from Cairo, with day morning, the steamer Iatan came down, hav- instructions to give to the poor, but sell to those ing passed Paducah at five o'clock, at which who were able to pay. It was after dark when time the buildings occupied as headquarters, we landed at Paducah, but we walked up toquartermaster's and commissary's offices, and ward the Fort through the smouldering ruins of ammunition dépôt, had been destroyed; also, the once beautiful city. The warehouses and many other houses, and the steamer Arizona, dwellings exhibited proininent marks of the rewhich was on the ways. The enemy appeared cent struggle. In many places, nothing but bare to have possession of the town, and the Fort and walls and chimneys were standing. Scarcely a three gunboats had been shelling them vigorous- building escaped the terrific fire of the gunboats, ly. When the fight began, two hundred men and many of them were completely riddled by occupied the Fort, and had three days' rations, shrapnel and solid shot. The gunboats Peosta but soon after, six hundred other troops were and Paw Paw fired, in all, about five hundred thrown in, and the rations were quickly used up. rounds, and had two men slightly wounded. The latan was ordered to load at Cairo with pro- The commander of the latter vessel received a visions, and go to the relief of the garrison. slight scratch on his cheek, and a Minié ball

Your correspondent went aboard of this steam- passed through his pantaloons. The cabins of er, and proceeded to the scene of action, to as- I the boats were perforated with shot. It was the

fire of the gunboats that did so much damage to citizen ; John Jordan, company K, One Hundred the town. Had it not been for the navy, Colonel and Twenty-second Illinois; M. R. Waller, comHicks would have had a much more severe con- pany C, Sixteenth Kentucky; J. A. Sadford, com. test. Upon arriving within the Fort, we learned pany B, Sixteenth Kentucky cavalry ; R. J. Martz, that when Forrest first came in, he formed a line First Ohio battery ; G. W. Farley, company D, of battle about two and a half miles in length, Sixteenth Kentucky cavalry; Isaac Austin, com: after which, he sent a flag of truce to Colonel pany G, Twenty-fifth Wisconsin; W. J. Bridges, Hicks, stating that he had enough men to storm company F, One Hundred and Twenty-second Iland capture the Fort, but desiring to avoid un- linois; P. Byerly, company I, Twenty-ninth necessary bloodshed, he demanded a surrender, Missouri; Thomas Pollard, company A, One Hunpromising to treat his captives as prisoners of dred and Twenty-seventh Illinois; James Park, war, and threatening, in case of refusal, to give company E, Seventh Tennessee cavalry; W. no quarter. Colonel Hicks replied that he had Waldeman, company F, Thirty-first Iowa; Henbeen placed there to defend the Fort; that he ry Nabors, company E, Seventh Tennessee car. was obliged to obey orders, and could not, as an i alry; A. Irwin, S. Hamilton, and Robert Barnes. honest soldier, comply with the demand.

These, with the four hundred taken a day or While this parley was going on, Forrrest ad-two before at Union City, Forrest offered to exvanced his sharp-shooters, and placed them in change for confederate prisoners, man for man; houses where they could pick off men in the but Colonel Hicks replied that he was not author Fort and on the gunboats. The battle soon be-ized to make any such arrangement. The numgan, and for several hours, raged with great fury. ber of white Federals killed, is fourteen ; woundThe gunboats poured their broadsides into the city, ed, forty-six. Eleven negroes were killed and demolishing buildings, and killing and wound- / wounded, all shot in the head. ing many of the enemy. The guns from the Fort The rebels had three hundred killed, and about thundered forth into the rebel ranks, and as the one thousand wounded. The latter they took confederates rushed up to their breastworks, to Mayfield by railroad ; the former, they left unmowed them down like grass. Forrest put his buried. Among the confederate officers slain best regiments in front, and, notwithstanding was Brigadier-General A. P. Thompson, a forthey exhibited great courage, some of the men mer resident of Paducah. The enemy remained marching up to the very mouths of the guns, about the city until three P.M., on Saturday, when they were repulsed four or five times. Their they moved off in the direction of Columbus, commanding general said they had never faltered where it was supposed the next fight would take before. There were about eight hundred men place. Learning that that place was threatened, within the fortifications, but only about one third your correspondent hurried aboard the despatchactively participated in the fight. Colonel Hicks boat Volunteer, and returned to Cairo this morncalmly directed all the operations, and showed | ing. such bravery and skill as entitle him to the high

ANOTHER ACCOUNT. est praise. Around the Fort lay heaps of un

BROOKLYN, MASSAC COUNTY, ILLINOIS, L buried rebels, and the blackened remains of many i

near PADUCAH, Ky., March 29, 1864. } beautiful dwellings.

Now that the sounds of battle have died away, While the battle was raging, parties of the en- and the smoke cleared off, and we can see the emy scouted through the city, plundering stores losses that have been sustained, the destruction and robbing stables. A large amount of goods that has been wrought, the repulses met with, was carried away, and many horses stolen ; none and the victories gained, I will give some details of the latter belonging to the Government were of the recent attack and fight at Paducah. taken, as the rebels were told they were the For a long time past, our town has been threatproperty of a prominent secessionist. The fightened with a rebel attack and raid; but we lasted all the afternoon, and resulted in a Fede- thought that they would hardly have the temeriral loss of as stated below, and about thirty pris- ty to make one, knowing, as no doubt they did, oners. These were convalescents, and were tak- that we had one of the best fortified forts (Fort en from the hospital. The names of some of Anderson) in the country, sufficiently garrisoned them are as follows: Thomas S. Wakefield, and supplied with guns and ammunition; and Corporal, company K, Twenty-fifth Wisconsin that it was the determination of our commandinfantry; George W. Babb, company A, Thir-ers, if the place was attacked by the rebels, that teenth Tennessee cavalry; Thomas Daniels, com- it should be shelled until made too hot to hold pany C, Sixteenth Kentucky cavalry; Hiram them. Smith, Sergeant, company B, Sixteenth Kentucky But we found, recently, that we were mistaken, cavalry; Z. Booth, Sergeant, company B, Six-and it became too plain that they intended an teenth Kentucky cavalry ; John Mullin, company attack, and that very shortly. We had informaE, Thirteenth Illinois infantry; G. T. Sharp, tion a few days before, that the rebel General Corporal, company K, Sixty-third Ohio; John S. Forrest, with seven thousand men, had attacked Howard, Corporal, company K, One Hundred and Union City, Tennessee; then that it had surren. Twenty-seventh Illinois ; Samuel Loder, compa-dered; then that the rebels were at Wingo Stany I, Thirty-first Iowa infantry; John Morehead, tion, in Graves County, Kentucky, advancing to company E, Ninth Illinois infantry; Hanson Hart, ward Mayfield; then that they were on this Acting Assistant-Surgeon ; Simon A. Murphy, side, advancing on Paducah; and then, on Fri.

« AnteriorContinuar »