War of the Rebellion: Serial 034 Page 0105 Chapter XXXV. ENGAGEMENT AT THOMPSON'S STATION, TENN.

Search Civil War Official Records

the enemy attacked us with great fury, and several times they charged up the hill and attempted to drive us from our position. At the same time their artillery was playing on us with grape and canister. The fighting at this point was continued for a long time, and until our ammunition was nearly exhausted for a while. The enemy at length ceased firing, when, in compliance with your order, the entire brigade was moved over still farther to the right, on the crest of another line of hills. After a brief engagement here, our ammunition gave out, and we could offer no further resistance, being entirely unsupported by our artillery and cavalry.

I beg leave to state, as a matter within my own personal knowledge, that our battery, the Eighteenth Ohio, Captain Aleshire, and the cavalry, under the command of Colonel Jordan, Ninth Pennsylvania, rendered no assistance after the infantry were engaged. I also report that early in the day, before any firing commenced on either side, Captain Aleshire attempted to retreat with his battery. He met Colonel Baird, of the Eighty-fifth Indiana, and myself on the turnpike, as we were advancing. We halted him, and ascertained from him that he was going back with his battery without orders. We protested against it, telling him he would create a panic among our men; but he persisted, and would have done so had we permitted it; but just at this juncture he received your order to take position, and reluctantly turned about.

I have no doubt had we been properly supported by the artillery and cavalry that our brigade could have made a successful retreat at any time during the engagement. As it was, we were entirely surrounded by a greatly superior force; our ammunition was exhausted, and we could not do otherwise than surrender.

Captain E. B. Bassett, of Company B, in my regiment, deserted his company as soon as the fighting commenced, in a most disgraceful and cowardly manner, and ought to be dismissed the service. One other officer, a lieutenant, after we crossed over to the right of the railroad, also left without permission or orders to do so. With these exceptions, every one of my officers behaved with the utmost gallantry, and every man, without exception, did his whole duty.

My loss was 20 killed and 83 wounded. The total number of deaths up to this time has bee: Killed in battle and died from wound received, 34; died rom exposure and cruel treatment at the hands of the enemy, 31. Not less than 82 men are disabled, and have been, or will be, discharged the service, making my whole loss in consequence of the disaster not less than 147.

Your obedient servant,

H. C. GILBERT,

Colonel, Commanding.

Colonel JOHN COBURN, Commanding First Brigade, Third Division.

Numbers 12. Report of Lieutenant Colonel James Pickands, One hundred and twenty-fourth Ohio Infantry.

HEADQUARTERS 124TH OHIO VOLUNTEER INFANTRY,

Triune, Tenn., June 10, 1863.

COLONEL: In accordance with your request, dated at Indianapolis, Ind., May 24, 1863, I have the honor to submit the following report:By order of Colonel O. H. Payne, commanding the brigade to which my