War of the Rebellion: Serial 059 Page 0118 Chapter XLIV. KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA.

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[Inclosure Numbers 1.]


Jackson, Tenn., March 21, 1864.

Major J. P. STRANGE,

Assistant Adjutant-General:

MAJOR: Having been appointed by the major-general commanding to investigate the facts of the recent fax levied by Colonel Fielding Hurst upon the citizens of this place to indemnify himself and command against damages assessed by the Federal authorities of Memphis in favor of Mrs. Newman, formerly a citizen of Jackson, whose house had been entered and robbed by the Federal soldiery in the summer of 1863, also the facts available in reference to the murders which have been committed by the enemy upon soldiers and citizens in this part of the State within the past few months, in obedience to instructions I called together a party of citizens, from whom I derived the following facts: About the 7th of February, 1864, Colonel Hurst, with his command, visited Jackson, Tenn., and announced publicly that in consequence of the assessment by the Federal authorities of Memphis, Tenn., against himself and command of damages to the amount of $5,139.25 in favor of Mrs. Newman, formerly a citizen of this place, he was here to demand this amount at once of the citizens, or on refusal or failure promptly to pay said amount into his hands that he would burn the town. Upon application of some of the citizens and the guaranty of 20 of them, five days were granted in which to raise the sum required, to be paid in greenbacks or Kentucky funds. On the 12th of February, 1864, the entire amount, $5,139.25, was paid into the hands of Colonel Fielding Hurst by the citizens of Jackson, Tenn.

The murders committed are as follows: Lieutenant Willis Dodds, Company F, Colonel Newson's regiment Tennessee volunteers, Forrest's command, under orders from his commanding officers, collecting his command, was arrested at the residence of his father in Henderson County, Tenn., on or about the 9th of March, 1864, by the command of Colonel Thornburgh, of the Federal army, on their march through this portion of the State eastward, and put to death by torture.

Private Silas Hodges, a scout, acting under orders from Colonel Tansil, states that he saw the body of Lieutenant Dodds very soon after his murder, and that it was most horribly mutilated, the face having been skinned, the nose cut off, the under jaw disjointed, the privates cut off, and the body otherwise barbarously lacerated and most wantonly injured, and that his death was brought about by the most inhuman process of torture.

Private Alex. Vale, Company H, Newsom's regiment Tennessee volunteers, under orders from Colonel tansil, was arrested and shot to death in Madison County, Tenn., by same command, on or about the 8th March, 1864.

Lieutenant Joseph Stewart, Private John Wilson, Private Samuel Osborn, members of Newsom's regiment Tennessee volunteers, while on duty under orders from their commanding officers, were captured by Hurst's command on or about the 15th February, 1864, in McNairy County, Tenn., and about three days thereafter their bodies were found in Haywood County, Tenn., having been shot to death.

On or about the 5th February, 1864, Private Martin, Company-, Wilson's regiment Tennessee volunteers, was captured by same