William Thompson Lusk.

October 21st, 1861.

My dear Mother:

We are sailing rapidly down the Chesapeake, still in doubt as to our ultimate destination, but expecting soon to reach Fortress Monroe ,where possibly there may be a chance of mailing a letter. We feel as though we were leaving the scene of old triumphs, and old disasters — of the latter we are mindful of many; so it was delicate sarcasm upon the part of our Bandmaster which induced him to strike up “Carry me back to old Virginny!” as we were crossing the Chain Bridge (which spans the Potomac), leaving the “sacred soil” behind us. And now we are embarked on the “Vanderbilt,” bound, this much we know, for “Dixie.” I am hoping to exchange salutations with some of my old friends in Charleston. What fun it would be to be playing the magnanimous to a captive Prince Hugo, or Whalley despising Yankees much, or any other of the royal youth who live in the Kingdom of South Carolina. It may be we are to visit Mobile. If so, tell Hunt I will try and collect his rents with interest. But why speculate?

Let us pray for laurels and victory! Much is expected of the 79th Regiment, I find. “My Highlanders!” as Gen. Stevens calls them. “They are equal to Regulars,” the General is reported to have said to Gen. Sherman1 commanding our expedition. “Send for them!” says Sherman. They are sent for, and arrive on shipboard in a horrible state of intoxication, with bloody faces and soiled clothes. The Chaplain of the 8th Michigan Regiment is horrified. He preaches to his men, and says: “I wish to make no invidious comparisons, but after what I’ve seen of late, I’m proud of you for your excellent conduct!” Well, we must hope that “My Highlanders” will silence invidious comparison when facing the foe. You tell me Ellis thinks I ought to boast of my Graham blood, and gently urge the same yourself, but the fact is, nothing has caused more amusement than Ellis’ own pretensions to his descent from the King of the Hebrides. Indeed, on one occasion, up at Sunbury — a country town of Pennsylvania — when he was introduced on a public occasion to the worthy citizens of the place as a lineal descendant of Donald, King of the Hebrides, a man in the audience forgot himself so far as to call out, “Damn Donald, King of the Hebrides!” which was highly improper, and wholly irrelevant, yet very entertaining to those who heard it. I am awaiting an official announcement of the birth of Walter’s boy, and mean to write congratulations as soon as I can find time. Hall will soon be married, he tells me. All my friends are getting settled, but I am a Nomad, fit, I fancy, for my present mode of life, which I find healthy and by no means disagreeable. Indeed, were my brother officers of a more agreeable character, I would take to soldiering with a relish, and with a reasonable amount of success might cry, “Vive la guerre!” However all dreams of the future terminate in dreams of peace, of home, and honorable repose in advancing years, all of which, dear mother, may we enjoy together, loving our country better for having proved that it was so dear that we were willing even to give up our life for its preservation.

Well, the blessings of peace be upon all at home. Kiss the little ones for me. Give love to all and

Believe me,




1 Thomas W. Sherman.

A likeness of Jones when he was editor  and majority owner of the Daily Madisonian during President John Tyler's administration.

OCTOBER 21ST.—The enemy’s papers represent that we have some 80,000 men in Kentucky, and this lulls us from vigilance and effort in Virginia. The Secretary of War knows very well that we have not 30,000 there, and that we are not likely to have more. We supposed Kentucky would rise. The enemy knows this fact as well as we do; nevertheless, it has been his practice from the beginning to exaggerate our numbers. It lulls us into fancied security.

rebellion record

October 21.—Twenty-one hundred men of the Fifteenth and Twentieth Massachusetts, the First California, and the Tammany regiments; the First U. S. Artillery, and Rhode Island battery, with five pieces of artillery, crossed the Potomac at Harrison’s Island or Ball’s Bluff, under command of Colonel E. D. Baker, to support reconnoissances above and below, under the general direction of Brig.-Gen. Stone. At about four p. M., they were suddenly attacked by a body of five thousand rebels under the Confederate General Evans. Unable through the disparity of numbers to hold their position, they were driven back to the river, and there, as no adequate means to pass the stream had been made, they were driven into it, or slaughtered on the bank. National loss: Killed, one hundred and fifty; wounded, one hundred and fifty; prisoners, five hundred.—(Docs. 35, 99.)

—The gunboat Conestoga having made a reconnoissance up the Tennessee River as far as the State line, returned to Cairo, Ill., this evening with two barges of flour that were seized on the way to the rebels.—N. Y. World, Oct. 22.

—The land forces destined to cooperate with the naval expedition against Port Royal sailed from Annapolis.—N. Y. Times, Oct. 24.

—A private letter published in the Boston Transcript, shows that Mr. Albert Pilsbury, for eight years American Consul at Halifax, is now acting as agent for the Confederates, purchasing vessels which he loads with assorted cargoes of warlike munitions, and then despatches to try and run the blockade. One of his ventures, the Argyle, sailed from Halifax a few days since, with a cargo valued at one hundred thousand dollars, and another is about ready to leave, with one hundred barrels of powder, packed in codfish drnms.

—The Ellsworth regiment, numbering one thousand and sixty muskets, left Albany, N. Y., for Washington. There was a perfect ovation at the departure of this regiment. Prior to their departure a handsome regimental banner was presented to the troops, with appropriate ceremonies, by the wife of Erastus Corning.—N. Y. Herald, Oct. 22.

—A Large body of rebels, under Jeff. Thompson and Lowe, were defeated at Fredericktown, Missouri, by Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana troops, about two thousand in number, under Colonel Carlin, Colonel Ross, Colonel Baker, Major Plummer, and Major Scofield. The engagement lasted two hours, when the rebels fled from the field in disorder, and took to the woods. Major Gavitt and Captain Hingham were killed in making a charge. Colonel Lowe, the rebel leader, was killed and four heavy guns were captured. The rebels were pursued for Twenty-two miles, when the chase was given over. Two hundred rebels were left in the field. Union loss, six killed and forty wounded.—(Doc. 100.)

—Capt. J. H. Barnes, with one hundred and fifty men of the Third Mass, regiment, while out from Newport News, Va., to get wood for the fort bakery, was attacked by a body of rebels, whom he drove off without loss.—N. Y. Herald, Oct. 24.

—Major Mix, of the Van Alen Cavalry, with thirty-one men, made a reconnoissance from Edwards’ Ferry, in Virginia, along the Leesburg road, beyond Goose Creek, drove in a vidette of the enemy’s, received the fire of a platoon of the rebels’ infantry, and returned without other loss than that of two horses.— (Doc. 101.)

—The Charleston Mercury, of this date, says: Our privateers are far from idle, although we hear less than formerly of their doings in the Kew York papers. Among their latest exploits is the capture of the brig Granada, of Portland, Me., (Pettingill, master,) from Neuvitas, Cuba, for New York, with a cargo of sugar, molasses, mahogany, and honey. We also hear it whispered that there has been an important (and not involuntary) accession to our stock of sugar, molasses, coffee, &c.

—General Zollicoffer, with six thousand infantry, sixteen hundred horse, and one battery of artillery, was repulsed by the Union forces under General Schoepf at Camp Wild Cat, Laurel County, Ky. For some days previous, the position had been held only by Colonel Garrard’s Kentucky regiment; but when it was knows that Zollicoffer would attack it, the Thirty-third Indiana and Seventeenth Ohio regiments, and Captain Stannard’s Ohio battery, were harried forward, and participated in the fight. Two separate, resolute, and unsuccessful attempts were made by the rebels to carry a bill occupied by the Federal force, when they withdrew. Their loss was unknown. National loss was four killed, and twenty-one wounded. (Doc. 102.)

Rutherford B. Hayes


Camp Tompkins, October 21, 1861.
Monday morning before breakfast.

Dearest : — Dr. Clendenin goes home this morning and I got up early to let you know how much I love you. Isn’t this a proof of affection? I dreamed about you last night so pleasantly.

The doctor will give you the news. I see Colonel Tom Ford has been telling big yarns about soldiers suffering. They may be true — I fear they are — and it is right to do something; but it is not true that the fault lies with the Government alone. Colonel Ammen’s Twenty-fourth has been on the mountains much more than the G. G — s [Guthrie Greys], for they have been in town most of the time; but nobody growls about them. The Twenty-fourth is looked after by its officers. The truth is, the suffering is great in all armies in the field in bad weather. It can’t be prevented. It is also true that much is suffered from neglect, but the neglect is in no one place. [The] Government is in part blamable, but the chief [blame] is on the armies themselves from generals down to privates.

It is certainly true that a considerable part of the sick men now in Cincinnati would be well and with their regiments, if they had obeyed orders about eating green chestnuts, green apples, and green corn. Now, all the men ought to be helped and cared for, but in doing so, it is foolish and wicked to assail and abuse, as the authors of the suffering, any one particular set of men. It is a calamity to be deplored and can be remedied by well directed labor, not by indiscriminate abuse.

I am filled with indignation to see that Colonel Ewing is accused of brutality to his men. All false. He is kind to a fault. All good soldiers love him; and yet he is published by some lying scoundrel as a monster.

I’ll write no more on this subject. There will be far more suffering this winter than we have yet heard of. Try to relieve it, but don’t assume that any one set of men are to be blamed for it. A great share of it can’t be helped. Twenty-five per cent of all men who enlist can’t stand the hardships and exposures of the field if suddenly transferred to it from their homes, and suffering is inevitable. Love to all.


R. B. Hayes.

Mrs. Hayes.


Sunday, October 20. — This day passed like any other, except perhaps it was a more busy one. The baggage of the regiment was put on board, and we started on our way for Fortress Monroe at noon. We steamed down the Chesapeake, and came in sight of the Capes, when we had to anchor owing to a fog and a storm, I received a letter from John Perry, much to my delight, as he is the only one I have heard from.

Richard R. Hancock

Sunday, 20th.—Zollicoffer put his brigade in motion about noon, with McNairy’s Battalion again in the rear. Late in the afternoon, within about three miles of Wildcat, Zollicoffer’s advance guard killed one1 of the enemy’s picket and wounded and captured another.

McNairy having been ordered to the front, reported to General Zollicoffer, at the head of the infantry column, just as the General had learned that the battalion of cavalry in front had come in contact with and been repulsed by the Federals. Notwithstanding it was now about dark, he ordered McNairy to take his battalion and dislodge the Federals from their position in a dense woods, just beyond a large field.

Just as the front of our battalion had passed out of the field into the road beyond, with woods on both sides, the enemy fired a few shots from the woods on our right. Our Colonel then cried out, “Charge! charge!” (with an oath). Dashing forward a short distance, seeing no enemy in front, and fearing an ambuscade, he halted, moved his men back into the field, dismounted a part of them, and scoured the woods on foot, finding that the enemy had fallen back. It would seem that there was only a small squad of Federals in the woods, and that they fled as soon as they fired the first round. We then fell back to the opposite side of the field, deployed in line of battle, and lay on our arms all night. We were now within about two miles of Wildcat; could hear the enemy’s drums. As soon as the enemy fired on the First Battalion, the Twentieth Tennessee Infantry plunged into Rockcastle River about waist deep, and went to our support.


1 Dr. Wyatt and the writer dismounted and lifted his remains from the road. He proved to be Captain Merriman, from East Tennessee.



Have kept very close today confined to the house. Had a regular old fashioned ague sweat last night, feel quite weak but suffer no pain. Doct Piper called to see me and left some medicine. Ate my dinner with good appetite. Chas & Sallie were here in the evening. Julia & the boys all went to church. It has been quite warm during the week past, no fires necessary during the day. It is cooler today. There does not appear to be any news of particular interest.


The three diary manuscript volumes, Washington during the Civil War: The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft, 1861-1865, are available online at The Library of  Congress.


October 20th.—I saw General McClellan to-day, who gave me to understand that some small movement might take place on the right. I rode up to the Chain Bridge and across it for some miles into Virginia, but all was quiet. The sergeant at the post on the south side of the bridge had some doubts of the genuineness of my pass, or rather of its bearer.

“I heard you were gone back to London, where I am coming to see you some fine day with the boys here.”

“No, sergeant, I am not gone yet, but when will your visit take place?”

“Oh, as soon as we have finished with the gentlemen across there.”

“Have you any notion when that will be?”

“Just as soon as they tell us to go on and prevent the blackguard Germans running away.”

“But the Germans did not run away at Bull Run?

Faith, because they did not get a chance—sure they put them in the rear, away out of the fighting.”

“And why do you not go on now?”

“Well, that’s the question we are asking every day.”

“And can anyone answer it?”

“Not one of us can tell; but my belief is if we had one of the old 50th among us at the head of affairs we would soon be at them. I belonged to the old regiment once, but I got off and took up with shoemaking again, and faith if I sted in it I might have been sergeant-major by this time, only they hated the poor Roman Catholics.”

“And do you think, sergeant, you would get many of your countrymen who had served in the old army to fight the old familiar red jackets?” “Well, sir, I tell you I hope my arm would rot before I would pull a trigger against the old 50th; but we would wear the red jacket too—we have as good a right to it as the others, and then it would be man against man, you know; but if I saw any of them cursed Germans interfering I’d soon let daylight into them.” The hazy dreams of this poor man’s mind would form an excellent article for a New York newspaper, which on matters relating to England are rarely so lucid and logical. Next day was devoted to writing and heavy rain, through both of which, notwithstanding, I was assailed by many visitors and some scurrilous letters, and in the evening there was a Washington gathering of Englishry, Irishry, Scotchry, Yankees, and Canadians.

Judith White Brockenbrough McGuire

Sunday Night.—To-day went to church, and heard an admirable sermon from Mr. J. As we returned, we called at the post-office, and received a newspaper from Dr. Drane, of Tennessee, in which is recorded the death of his son James. He belonged to the army in Western Virginia, and died there of typhoid fever. He was one of the late pupils of the E. H. S., a most amiable, gentlemanly youth; and it seems but as yesterday that I saw him, light-hearted and buoyant, among his young companions. He is constantly before my mind’s eye. His parents and young sister—how my heart bleeds for them! Our poor boys! What may not each battle bring forth? Scarcely a battalion of the army, in any part of the Confederacy, where they are not.

Elisha Franklin Paxton

Centreville, Va., October 20, 1861.

Letters prompted by an affectionate anxiety for my fate, bringing intelligence that wife and children are happy in the enjoyment of every necessary comfort at home, furnish in their perusal the happiest moments of the strange life I am leading. Such interchanges of letters are a poor substitute for the happiness which we have found in each other in times past; but it is all we can have now. Our separation must continue until this sad war runs its course and terminates, as it must some day, in peace. Then I trust we may pass what remains of life together, loving each other all the better from a recollection of the sadness we have felt from the separation. I am sometimes reminded of you, and the strong tie which binds me to you, by odd circumstances. The other day I saw an officer, who, like myself, has left wife and children at home, riding by the camp, with another woman on horseback, from a pleasure excursion up the road; and I could not help feeling that in seeking pleasure in such a source he was proving himself false to the holiest feeling and the highest obligation which is known on earth. I thought if I had acted thus faithless to you and our marriage vow, I should feel through life a sense of baseness and degradation from which no repentance or reparation could bring relief. If I know myself, I would not exchange the sweet communion with my absent wife, enjoyed through the recollections of the past and the hopes of the future, for any temporary pleasure which another might offer. I would rather live over again in memory the scenes of seven long years, when we talked of our love and our future, our ride to Staunton on our wedding-day, and our association since then, chequered here and there with events of sadness and sorrow, than accept any enjoyment which ill-timed passion might prompt me to seek from another. I trust, Love, this feeling may grow with every day which passes, and that I may always have the satisfaction of knowing my devotion and fidelity merit the affection which your warm heart lavishes upon me.

I have received a commission as Major in the 27th Regiment, and expect to change my quarters to-morrow. I leave my present position with much reluctance.


A likeness of Jones when he was editor  and majority owner of the Daily Madisonian during President John Tyler's administration.

OCTOBER 20TH.—A lady, just from Washington, after striving in vain to procure an interview with the Secretary of War, left with me the programme of the enemy’s contemplated movements. She was present with the family of Gen. Dix at a party, and heard their purposes disclosed. They meditate an advance immediately, with 200,000 men. The head of Banks’s column is to cross near Leesburg; and when over, a movement upon our flank is intended from the vicinity of Arlington Heights. This is truly a formidable enterprise, if true. We have not 70,000 effective men in Northern Virginia. The lady is in earnest—and remains here.

I wrote down the above information and sent it to the President; and understood that dispatches were transmitted immediately to Gen. Johnston, by telegraph.

The lady likewise spoke of a contemplated movement by sea with gun-boats, to be commanded by Burnside, Butler, etc.

In the evening I met Mr. Hunter, and told him the substance of the information brought by the lady. He seemed much interested, for he knows the calm we have been enjoying bodes no good ; and he apprehends that evil will grow out of the order of the Secretary of War, permitting all who choose to call themselves alien enemies to leave the Confederacy. While we were speaking (in the street) Mr. Benjamin came up, and told me he had seen the letter I sent to the President. He said, moreover, that he did not doubt the enemy intended to advance as set forth in the programme.

Samuel Ryan Curtis.

Head-Quarters Camp of Instruction,
Benton Barracks, (near St. Louis, Mo.,) Oct 20, 1861

His Ecy Abraham Lincoln President

In further response to your letter Concerning affairs in this Department I feel it my duty to present, that orders from the Commanding General are draining the Northern and Eastern portions of this State, and pressing them west, so out of the way, I fear they will be lost to actual necessities that grow out of the weakness of this section. Every Cavalier is removed from Rolla where mounted Scouts are of the greatest necessity. All the armed Cavalry is removed from here and all the infantry that is properly arrived also. Regiments are drawn from the Hannibal and St Joseph Rail Road and sent forward to Augment the Western Column which was fled from by the rebels when it had not a tithe of its present strength.

I regret also to see the forces being much divided in small and great Columns scattering and consuming the momentum they should carry with them, and offering occasion for more rebel victories such as the past has painfully witnessed.

Seven Companies (Infantry and Cavalry) are 90 miles South of Rolla with no support.

Also called Brigr General Harding1 is gathering troops to lead a similar expedition.

At the same time here is a force of irregular rascals under Thompson forty or fifty miles below me who could be driven to Arkansas or caught in the swamp of New Madrid, if I could arm and move the Cavalry now here under special orders to go west just as fast as Squadrons can be armed.

I am sorry to trouble your Excellency about matters which ought to be otherwise disposed of but the anxiety expressed in your letter induces me to keep you advised.

[no signature]

Chester Harding Jr., Lt. Col. Asst. Adjt. Gen. Missouri Vols., May, 1861, Col. 10th Mo. Inf., and later of the 25th Mo. Inf., was one of those who held a brig. gen.’s commission from Fremont. Harding held such rank when he led an expedition to Fulton. Mo., in October, 1861.

rebellion record

October 20.—Two or three companies of the Forty-third Indiana regiment, stationed at Camp Vigo, in Terre Haute, under command of their colonel, proceeded quietly this evening to the office of the Journal and Democrat, and in a short time demolished every thing it contained. They then proceeded to several private houses, and served them in the same manner.—New York Times, October 22.

—This morning a heavy detachment from General Smith’s division made a reconnoissance to Flint Hill, Va., which is about two miles and a half from Fairfax Court House, and from which there is a good view of the village. A strong picket was observed there, and indications that a large or reserve force was in the vicinity. The reconnoitring party consisted of portions of Mott’s and Ayres’ batteries, and companies from the Fifth (regular) and from Col. Friedman’s regiment of cavalry. Generals McClellan, Porter, Smith, and Hancock accompanied the expedition.—National Intelligencer, October 21.

—The Sixth regiment of Vermont Volunteers, under the command of Colonel Nathaniel Lord, Jr., passed through Jersey City, N. J., en route for Washington. The regiment numbered one thousand and fifty men.

clarksville texas standard

Standard [Clarksville], Tx, October 19, 1861

In Northern Texas we have the fruits of the earth in abundance. Corn rates at 25 cents per bushel. Immense quantities could be contracted for at that rate, to be delivered in any of our Country Towns. Wheat can be purchased at 50 cents per bushel in large quantity. The best flour made in Northern Texas, and not excelled in quality anywhere can be purchased in Paris, Lamar County, and probably throughout several counties, at $2 per hundred pounds. Sweet Potatoes are plentiful, and are sold in the County Towns at 50 cents per bushel. Apples of excellent quality, are offered upon the Streets of Clarksville, every two or three days at one dollar per bushel. Beef is abundant, fat and cheap. Pork will be worth about $5 per hundred at Christmas. Hogs are not in excess, but there is Mast, and Corn is a drug, consequently Pork cannot be at a high price. Now is the time for migration to Northern Texas, and emigrants are daily coming in, many of them from Kentucky, accompanied by trains of dark colored followers. Their force migration will not prove a hardship, but will result in great blessings to them, cheap and fertile lands, health, plenty, freedom from political cares, as members of an undivided body politic.


Saturday, October 19. — Nothing of any interest occurred to-day. We expected our regiment to come on board and waited all day in vain. Finally, about eight o’clock P.M. they came, and to my disappointment I found they were the 4th New Hampshire regiment, as I hoped to see some Massachusetts troops. Church, the reporter of the New York Sun, and Green of the Boston Journal came on board.


Letter from Captain Lyon to Mrs. Lyon.

“Pilot Knob, Saturday, Oct, 19, 1861.—We arrived here on Thursday afternoon. This place is ninety miles southwest of St. Louis. Ironton is only two miles from here. The country is rough, wild and mountainous. Pilot Knob is a conical hill, rising some eight hundred feet above us. There are also extensive lead mines in the vicinity. I wrote you at De Soto, forty miles from here. We came on to where the bridge across Big River was burned, and my company and another were sent on here in advance of the rest of the regiment. Col. Murphy, who was with us, had a telegram from here saying the rebels were advancing on this place. We hurried up, the train running with frightful velocity, and when we got here the inhabitants were running from the place to the hills and everybody said a battle was being fought three or four miles out. We expected to be sent right on. It was concluded, however, that we should wait for the balance of the regiment, which had been sent for in great haste. Before they arrived we learned the facts about the fight. It was a mere skirmish, some twenty miles from here, between three hundred Indiana cavalry stationed here and a detachment of cavalry from the rebel army. Five or six men wounded on our side, none killed. Several reported killed on the other side.

“There are about four thousand troops here. The men are all anxious to fight. It is impossible to foretell our future movements. Do not be disturbed by any newspaper reports about us. One of the St. Louis papers yesterday puts us in a battle here and has us badly cut up. That is a fair specimen of their accuracy. I was in more danger on the cars Thursday than I shall be in any battle. When I see the misery and suffering which I see this war causes here, I thank God that you are all in peaceful homes and that the trials and perils of the contest, so far as you are concerned, can be borne by me alone.”

1 comment


A dense fog all over the City this morning and it has been a misty damp day. I have not been out today yet do not feel very bad, had a restless night and some fever but feel better tonight. A great deal of heavy firing all day over the river, some fighting down with the Batteries last night and this morning. No particular news afloat. Everybody seem to be waiting like Mr “Micawber” for “something to turn up.”


The three diary manuscript volumes, Washington during the Civil War: The Diary of Horatio Nelson Taft, 1861-1865, are available online at The Library of  Congress.

Richard R. Hancock

Saturday, 19th.—The head of the column advanced to a point some six or seven miles beyond London, on the road leading to Wildcat, but, for want of water, subsistence and forage, had to return to the wagon train, about four miles beyond London.

Zollicoffer’s advance had another skirmish with the enemy’s picket, resulting in the killing of one man on each side.

After marching in the rear of the wagon train to within eight miles of London, Colonel McNairy was ordered to move his battalion to the front. On reaching our General’s headquarters, about nightfall, encamped, as above named, some four miles from town, McNairy was ordered to send out scouting parties on both sides of the London-Wildcat road. Accordingly, a part of our battalion went southwest in the direction, of Somerset, while Allison’s Company went back to London, and thence about nine miles north-east in the direction of Booneville, capturing two men, two muskets and three horses on the way. Finding no organized force in that direction, Allison returned, by the way of London, to camp, some three miles from town, about daybreak next morning. Here the road forked—the left, leading by the way of Wildcat, Mount Vernon and Crab Orchard, to Camp Dick Robinson, and the right, to Richmond. We were now within ten miles of Wildcat.


October 19th— Lord Lyons and Mr. Seward were driving and dining together yesterday en ami. To-day, Mr. Seward is engaged demolishing Lord Lyons, or at all events the British Government, in a despatch, wherein he vindicates the proceedings of the United States Government in certain arrests of British subjects which had been complained of, and repudiates the doctrine that the United States Government can be bound by the opinion of the law officers of the Crown respecting the spirit and letter of the American constitution. This is published as a set-off to Mr. Seward’s circular on the seacoast defences which created so much depression and alarm in the Northern States, where it was at the time considered as a warning that a foreign war was imminent, and which has since been generally condemned as feeble and injudicious.

rebellion record

October 19.—Colonel Morgan, with two hundred and twenty men of the Eighteenth Missouri regiment, with two pieces of artillery, had a fight with some four hundred rebels, on Big Hurricane Creek, in Carroll County, Mo., killing fourteen, taking eight prisoners, and putting the balance to flight. Colonel Morgan had fourteen men wounded, two mortally.—(Doc. 98.)

—The Leavenworth (Kansas) Conservative of this date gives an account of the surrender of Fort Fillmore, New Mexico, as follows:—

On the 6th of July, Major Lynde had command of seven companies of infantry and two of cavalry, in all about seven hundred men. The next officers in rank were Captains Poster and Stevenson and Lieut. McAnnelly. On the 24th of July, at three o’clock p.m,, four hundred and eighty men, with four pieces of artillery, started for Mesilla; arrived there at dark; were drawn up in line of battle between two cornfields; there were no flankers and no skirmishers out; the cavalry were within eighty-five yards of the ambuscade laid by the Texans, who numbered less than two hundred, and were poorly armed. Shots were fired out of the cornfield, one of them taking effect on Lieut. McAnnelly, a true Union man. Major Lynde was behind a wagon. A perfect cross fire was opened on the cavalry, and, no officer now being in command of them, they retreated. No order had been given them to dismount, fire, or charge, and they retreated “on their own hook” to the rear of the infantry, in order to give the artillery a chance to fire. Our own infantry opened a perfect volley on our own cavalry— by mistake, it was said. A few shots were fired by the artillery, when the whole command was ordered to retreat back on the post. Arrived there at nine o’clock. Next day all were engaged in fortifying. At half-past ten an order was given to evacuate that night. The commissary was ordered to roll out the whiskey, and the infantry were allowed to drink it and fill their canteens. No water was furnished for the hot march before them. The march was undertaken in the most irregular manner, and before we had gone ten miles men were dropping from the ranks and falling down drunk. At two in the morning Texan troops were seen advancing on the Los Crusas road. Our adjutant, on being informed of it, made no preparations to resist an attack, but said:—”They have nothing to fear from us.” Of the seven companies, so many had been left drunk and captured that no more than two companies went into camp. The officers left the men, and held a long council of war. The men of the rifle command decided among themselves to fight. Just as they were ready Captain Gibbs came up, ordered a retreat upon camp, saying:—“We will fight them there.” As soon as they reached there, they were formed into line, and told to dismount for the last time. “You are turned over as prisoners of war,” was all they heard. All the arms and supplies were given up, the oath was administered, and next day the men were released on parole.

—The schooner Fairfax, of Georgetown, D. C., bound up the Potomac with 1,100 bales of hay and 500 barrels cement, was captured by the rebels off Shipping Point. This schooner and another vessel, in tow of the steam-tug Resolute, were fired upon when passing the rebel batteries, and at that critical moment the hawser by which the Fairfax was attached to the steamer broke. The vessel had necessarily to be left to her fate. She drifted toward the batteries, from which several boats started and took possession of her. The Resolute, with the other vessel in tow, proceeded up the river. This is the first serious disaster that has happened to any vessel in passing these batteries. —National Intelligencer, October 21.

—Twenty rebel prisoners, selected from among the North Carolinians on Bedloe’s Island, were sent to Fortress Monroe, there to be released upon taking the oath not to bear arms against the United States Government. This is done in response to the recent release of fifty-seven wounded soldiers at Richmond. As nearly all the persons released by the rebel authorities are disabled by wounds and disease, more than half of them having had a limb amputated, Col. Burke made a selection in the same manner from among the common soldiers, and these were taken who appeared to be most disabled and weakened by disease. Their names are not given. This action of the Government was an agreeable surprise to the prisoners, and the fortunate ones hailed their deliverance with unfeigned delight.—Baltimore American, October 21.

—Abel Smith, colonel of the Thirteenth regiment of New York Volunteers, died this morning, at Mechanicsville, N. Y., from injuries sustained on the railroad, at that place.— Gen. Heintzleman made a reconnoissance in considerable force along the telegraph road as far as Pohick Church and Acotink Creek, in Virginia, when some of the rebel pickets were met and driven back. It was ascertained that the rebel forces were posted between the telegraph road and Occoquan.— Washington Star, October 21.

—General Wool, at Fortress Monroe, issued an order, giving every male contraband employed in the department, eight dollars per month, and every female four dollars per month. —New York Tribune, October 21.

Rutherford B. Hayes

Camp Tompkins, Near Gauley Bridge, October 19, 1861.

Dear Uncle: — It is late Saturday night. I am away from my regiment at General Rosecrans’ headquarters and feel lonesome. The weather is warm, threatening rain. We are waiting events, not yet knowing whether we are to stay here or go to some other quarters for the winter. I can’t help suspecting that important events are looked for near Washington which may determine our course for the winter. All things in that direction have, to my eye, a hopeful look. A victory there if decisive will set things moving all over. We know the enemy we have been after is heartily sick of this whole business, and only needs a good excuse to give it up. A party of our men, bearing a flag of truce, spent a night with a party of Lee’s men a few days ago, and the conversations they report tell the story.

Matthews has gone home for a fortnight. It is quite probable that I shall go home during the fall or winter for a short visit.

We have done no fortifying yet. We occasionally hear of a little guerrilla party and scamper after them, but no important movements are likely to occur here, unless a road should be opened from Washington to Richmond.

I see that Buckland is in the war. That is right. The noticeable difference between North and South in this war is, that South, the leading citizens, the lawyers and public men of all sorts, go into the fight themselves. This has not been so with us in the same degree. I am less disposed to think of a West Point education as requisite for this business than I was at first. Good sense and energy are the qualities required. . . .


R. B. Hayes.

S. Birchard.

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