War of the Rebellion: Serial 007 Page 0255 Chapter XVII. CAPTURE OF FORT DONELSON, TENN.

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Numbers 46. Reports of General A. Sidney Johnston, C. S. Army, commanding the Western Department, and resulting correspondence.

NASHVILLE, TENN., February 14, 1862.


The latest from General Pillow at Fort Donelson:

We have just had the fiercest fight on record between our guns and six gunboats, which lasted two hours. They came within 200 yards of our batteries. We drove them back, damaged two of them badly, and crippled a third very badly. No damage done to our battery and not a man killed.



HEADQUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT, Edgefield, February 15, 1862-5.15 p. m.

Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN:

The attack at Fort Donelson was this morning renewed by the enemy at dawn with great vigor and continued until 1 o'clock, when the conflict was still raging. We had taken some 200 prisoners, forced their positions, and captured four pieces of artillery. At that hour the enemy were still bringing up re-enforcement for the attack. Our arms were successful, the field having been carried inch by inch, with severe loss on both sides. There is no intelligence since 1 o'clock.


EDGEFIELD, TENN., February 15-midnight, Via Chattanooga, Tenn., February 16, 1862-11.30 p. m.

Honorable J. P. BENJAMIN:

We have had to-day at Fort Donelson one of the most sanguinary conflicts of the war. Our forces attacked the enemy with energy and won a brilliant victory. I have the satisfaction to transmit the dispatch, after night-fall, of General Floyd, who was in command of our forces.


General, C. S. Army.

NASHVILLE, TENN., February 16, 1862.

J. P. BENJAMIN, Secretary of War:

I have received the following dispatch:

FORT DONELSON, TENN., February 15, 1862-11 p. m.


The enemy having invested our lines, it was determined to attack them, which we did this morning at 5.30 o'clock. General Pillow led the attack upon the enemy's right flank, and, after a most obstinate and sanguinary conflict, succeeded in driving the enemy form his position and forcing him back towards his left flank. General Buckner led the attack on the right, in which many of s troops displayed commendable determination and courage. General Johnson led his command with firmness and spirit in the conflict. Nothing could exceed the steady and determined courage of many of our troops, with numbers much less than half. The enemy maintained a successful struggle, which continued for nine hours, and resulted in driving him form the field, with a loss on his part of 1,240-ood killed and wounded, of whom 1,000 were killed. About 300 prisoners, six pieces, six pieces of artillery, and 1,000 stand of arms were