War of the Rebellion: Serial 057 Page 0065 Chapter XLIV. OPERATIONS ABOUT SPARTA, TENN.

Search Civil War Official Records

JANUARY 3, 1864.-Scout from Memphis, Tenn., toward Hernando, Miss.

Report of Captain Lucius B. Skinner, Sixth Illinois Cavalry.


Memphis, Tenn., January 3, 1864.

CAPTAIN: Captain D. L. Grimes, sent out this morning with detachments of Companies I and K, proceeded on the Hernando road to within 4 miles of Hernando. He saw only some small squads of the enemy when near that place, but hearing that there was a force in the town too large for him to compete with, he took an easterly course, intersecting the Holly Ford and Hernando road, and returned to camp by that road.

The enemy are reported to be on Coldwater, with headquarters at or near Coldwater Station, the troops very much scattered over the country, from Coldwater to Senatobia, wherever they can obtain forage. They are variously estimated in numbers, by some as high as 8,000, under the command of Forrest, Faulkner, and others.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Captain, Commanding Detachment Sixth Illinois Cavalry.

Captain F. W. FOX,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

JANUARY 4-14, 1864.-Operations about Sparta, Tenn.

Report of Colonel Thomas J. Harrison, Eighth Indiana Cavalry.*


Cedar Grove, January 14, 1864.

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that on the 4th instant I proceeded to the other side of the Cumberland Mountains with 200 men, dividing them into four parties. Captain Thomas Herring was sent down Caney Fork with 60 men; Captain W. W. De Witt with 50 men directly on Sparta; Captain Leavell down the Blue Spring Cove with 30 men, and I headed a party of 60 men that descended the mountain at the head of the Calfkiller. We respectively reached the points designated at daylight on Tuesday morning. My orders to the various parties were to move in the direction of Sparta and concentrate at that point in the evening, arresting all the men that could be found. The points designated include the localities of Captain Carter's, Captain Champ Ferguson's, Major Bledsoe's, and Colonel Murray's squads of bushwhackers. Our move resulted in considerable skirmishing. We remained on the Calfkiller for five days, and in time we killed 4 of the bushwhackers and wounded 5 or 6 capturing 15, including a captain and lieutenant, 30 horses, and 20 stand of arms. We visited the farm of Champ Ferguson on two occasions, capturing much of the sutler's goods taken by him from Colonel Brownlow's sutler, and 5 of his horses, with many valuable


*See Thomas' report, p. 7.