War of the Rebellion: Serial 055 Page 0457 Chapter XLIII. THE CHATTANOOGA-RINGGOLD CAMPAIGN.

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No. 131.

Report of Surg. Ferdinand H. Gross, U. S. Army, Medical Director.


Chattanooga, Tennessee, December 27, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor herewith to transmit the report of killed and wounded of the Fourteenth Army Corps in the recent engagement in front of Chattanooga, and respectfully submit the following brief remarks, relative to the operations of the medical department during that short campaign:

On or about the 20th of November, I informed the division medical directors of the command that a general engagement with the enemy was expected to take place in the course of a few days, and that the division hospitals should at once be prepared, and all other necessary arrangements made for the reception of wounded.

The sick that were hospital cases were accommodated as far as possible in one hospital, under charge of Assistant Surgeon Benson, Tenth Wisconsin Volunteers. The building (an old frame hotel), having conveniences for heating and cooking, has been made, through efforts of the officer in charge, to answer our purpose quite well.

All our hospital (with the exception of temporary hospital depots) were located in Chattanooga. Those intended for the reception of wounded, consisted, for the First Division, of two churches, also quite well adapted for our use. In addition to these, a number of hospital tents were pitched in convenient localities, to be used in case of emergency. The larger of these churches (a brick building on Main street) I had prepared for the accommodation of wounded subsequent to the battle of Chickamauga, and required (aside from the removal of a few sick) no additional preparation.

Surg. E. H. Dunn, the officer in charge, with an efficient staff of operators and assistants, performed the business of the hospital in an admirable manner.

The smaller frame church was prepared for the occasion and placed under charge of Surg. R. F. Dyer, One hundred and Fourth Illinois Volunteers. The building and other necessary were promptly supplied, and the hospital conducted in a highly creditable manner. The small number of wounded of the Second Division (General J. C. Davis) were accommodated after their arrival at Chattanooga in the general hospital of the post.

This division took its position on the extreme left of the line, fronting Mission Ridge, and was ordered to act as reserve to the Fifteenth Corps, under command of Major-General Sherman.

For the particulars of the part taken in the engagement by the Second Division, and its subsequent expedition toward Knoxville, Tennessee, I respectfully refer you to the report of Surgeon Payne, the division medical director.

During that expedition, which lasted about twenty-five days, the troops had but a scanty allowance of food, and many of them were poorly clad, but notwithstanding this privation and suffering, there had been no death from sickness, and on their arrival at Chattanooga only a remarkably small number required treatment in hospitals.

An old brick hotel, which we have had in use since the battle of Chickamauga, constitutes the hospital for the Third Division (General