War of the Rebellion: Serial 007 Page 0391 Chapter XVII. CAPTURE OF FORT DONELSON, TENN.

Search Civil War Official Records

Hence the utmost courage and endurance could not and did not avail to save us from disaster; but the deeds of daring performed by our army will from the brightest picture int he pages of our history, and make the names of the heroes of Dover and its blood-stained hills immortal.

I am, your obedient servant,

MILTON A. HAYNES,

Lieutenant-Colonel, Chief of Tennessee Corps of Artillery.

General S. COOPER,

Adjutant-General C. S. Army.

Numbers 73. Report of Colonel J. E. Bailey, Forty-ninth Tennessee Infantry, of the water batteries, &c.

JACKSON, MISS., October 9, 1862.

SIR: I have the honor to make the following report of the position of the water batteries and the garrison of the fort proper during the siege of Fort Donelson:

The batteries near the river mounted one 68-pounder rifle, one 10-inch columbiad, manned by Captain Ross' light artillery company-the first under immediate command of Captain Ross, the last under Lieutenant Bedford-and eight 32-pounders, under command of Captain Bidwell, of the Thirtieth Tennessee, and Captain Beaumont, of the Fiftieth Tennessee; all under command of Captain Dixon.

The garrison of the fort consisted of the Thirtieth Tennessee, Colonel Head; Forty-ninth Tennessee, my own regiment; and the Fiftieth Tennessee, Colonel Sugg; one 8-inch howitzer and two 12-pounder howitzers, under Lieutenant Starkowitch* and 9 men; Colonel Head being in command of the fort and water batteries on the evening of February 12. Colonel Head, with the Thirtieth Tennessee, was ordered to join General Pillow's division, when, by order of General Pillow, I assumed command.

On Thursday, February 13, one of the enemy's gunboats, approaching to about 1 mile of the fort, threw about 50 shot and shell at us, killing Captain Dixon and one man of the Fiftieth Tennessee and wounding 4 others of the same regiment. Captain Shuster, a volunteer in the batteries, being injured by the blast of one of the guns, the command of the batteries, after Captain Dixon's death, devolved upon Captain Culbertson.

In the afternoon of February 14 an attack was made on the batteries and fort by six of the enemy's gunboats, four of them approaching within 300 yards of the batteries, the other two lying near a mile off. The boats were repulsed and evidently seriously damaged. Lieutenant Johnson, of the Forty-ninth, was wounded by a fragment of a shell.

On the morning of the 16th, after the surrender of the army, the enemy threw fire or six shells into the fort.

The officers and men in the batteries were cool and steady; their fire was delivered with remarkable precision; but I would call attention particularly to the conduct of Captains Culbertson, Ross, Beaumont, Bidwell, and Lieutenant Bedford-Captain Dixon inspiring the men with his own heroic courage.

On the evening of February 15, when the enemy attacked General Buckner's right wing, I was ordered to move with the Forty-ninth Ten-

---------------

*Probably Stankieuriz.

---------------