War of the Rebellion: Serial 007 Page 0402 OPERATIONS IN KY., TENN., N. ALA., AND S. W. VA. Chapter XVII.

Search Civil War Official Records

Nashville into the hands of the enemy, and to report the result of their investigations as early as practicable.

Resolved (on motion of Thomas J. Foster, of Alabama), That the special committee appointed to investigate the late military disaster at Forts Henry and Donelson and the surrender of Nashville into the hands of the enemy be also instructed to investigate the causes of the surrender of Fort Henry; to ascertain by whom said fort was located; whether the commanding general had previously examined the site of said fort; whether the hills on the opposite side of the river were properly fortified, or whether were they fortified at all; and, if not, why they were not fortified at the time when labor and troops from Alabama were dispatches to Fort Henry for that purpose.

Resolved (on motion of Honorable H. C. Burnett), That the committee appointed to investigate the causes of our recent disasters at Forts Henry and Donelson, &c., be instructed to report to this House who was the senior general commanding at Fort Donelson during the engagements at that point; who was second in command, and who third in command; also why it was tat the two senior generals in command abandoned the position, leaving the junior general to surrender; also to report why the transports then in the vicinity of Fort Donelson were not used in removing our forces from the presence of an overwhelming foe.

Special report on the surrender of Fort Donelson, &c.

Mr. Foote, on leave, reported from the special committee appointed to examine into the surrender of Fort Donelson, &c., as follows:

The special committee appointed to examine into the causes of the recent military disaster at Fort Donelson, and into the circumstances connected with the surrender of the city of Nashville into the hands of the enemy (to which committed various other collateral matters have been subsequently referred), beg leave to report that they have, in the performance of the duties assigned them, found it necessary to accumulate a large mass of testimony, all of which is herewith reported to this House for such action in regard to the same as shall be deemed expedient. It is recommended by the committee that the House do cause said testimony, together with such other as may be taken, to be printed for the use of the members.


Chairman, &c.





The report was agreed to.

A true copy. Teste.



Message of the President.


To the Honorable Speaker of the House of Representatives:

SIR: I herewith transmit to the House of Representatives a communication from the Secretary of War, affording, as far as practicable, the