War of the Rebellion: Serial 074 Page 0271 Chapter L. REPORTS, ETC.-ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE.

Search Civil War Official Records

Numbers 489.

Reports of Colonel Adam B. Gorgas, Thirteenth Illinois Infantry, of affair (May 17) at Madison Station, Ala.


Madison, Ala., May 17, 1864-12 noon.

LIEUTENANT: We were attacked this morning at 8 o'clock by a cavalry force, under Patterson, numbering about 1,000, with four pieces artillery. We were obliged to fall back, after a severe fight; and, being completely surrounded, we cut our way through their lines, and fell back to the bridge and water-tank, about three miles east. We formed and returned to this place, and, after skirmishing, drove them from the town. They captured several of our men, what number we are not now able to say. Our camp and garrison equipage, together with all the regimental and company papers, are either destroyed or carried off. The depot buildings are burned, together with about 50 bales of cotton. The railroad is all right; telegraph lines cut. We are left here without rations, and but little ammunition. Our transportation is all gone. They retreated in the way of Triana. We have sent a small squad of mounted men to find out where they have gone. Rebel prisoners captured say the force crossed the river last night between Triana and Whitesburg.

I am, very respectfully, yours, &c.,


Colonel, Commanding.

Lieutenant C. L. WHITE,

Actg. Asst. Adjt. General, Third Div., 15th Army Corps.


Madison Station, May 19, 1864.

CAPTAIN: I would respectfully submit the following report of the attack made on this post by a force of the enemy, under command of Colonel Patterson, consisting of two regiments of mounted infantry and a battery of four 12-pounder howitzers, the entire force numbering about 1,000 men:

The attack was made at 8.30 a. m. on the Triana road, on which two of their field pieces were placed in position, the remaining two pieces having crossed the railroad, together with a portion of the enemy's command. They, however, did not get into position, as the attack was precipitated by the enemy's being discovered by a forage train, which was just starting out. As soon as discovered the enemy opened fire from their two pieces on the Triana road, having previously sent detachments to each one of my picket posts, five in number, guided by some citizens who seemed to know the exact locality of each, encircling them and capturing them entire. On the first alarm my command was quickly formed in line, excepting three companies, who occupied the stockade in the rear of the depot building and behind some cotton bales. Two companies were thrown out as skirmishers, but the enemy appearing in such a large force in their front, I ordered them to fall back to the main column. In the mean time the stockade was rendered untenable by the rapid fire from the artillery, so that the three companies were compelled