Block-house No. 7, double cased, garrisoned by Lieutenant J. J. Phifer and about 25 men of the One hundred and eleventh U. S. Colored Infantry, was surrendered on the morning of the 25th without a fight. No artillery could be brought to bear on this block-house. Dense forest all around, through which no roads had been cut. I see no reason to justify this surrender.
Block-houses Nos. 7 and 8 were both double cased, and at Sulphur trestle, that was also defended by a small earth-work in close proximity to both block-houses and trestle. This was defended by about 400 men of the One hundred and eleventh U. S. Colored Infantry, 400 of the THIRD Tennessee Cavalry, and about 200 of the Ninth Indiana Cavalry. At this place a considerable fight took place. Our forces lost 107 men, among whom was Colonel Lathrop, of the One hundred and eleventh U. S. Colored Infantry. They had exhausted most of their ammunition; in fact, the cavalry were entirely out and were forced to surrender. This rendered the block- houses useless, which were also surrender on the 25th.
Block-house No. 10, doubled cased, was garrisoned by Captain S. B. Akins, Company K, One hundred and eleventh U. S. Colored Infantry, and 45 men. This was evacuated (whether with orders I am unable to say) without resistance.
Block-house No. 11, double cased up to loop-holes four days before the surrender. This was also evacuated without any resistance.
Sir, these are the facts of the surrender of the different posts on my section of the Nashville and Decatur Railroad. On the morning of the 24th I, with considerable effort, reached the fort at Athens. I went there for the purpose of helping defend the place, and was surrendered with the garrison.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. C. MARCH,
Lieutenant, 115th Ohio Vol. Infty., Asst. Inspector of Railroad Defenses.
Major J. R. WILLETT,
Inspector of Fortifications, Department of the Cumberland.
No. 8. Report of Colonel Wallace Campbell, One hundred and tenth U. S. Colored Infantry.
SAINT LOUIS, MO., November 24, 1864.
LIEUTENANT: I have the honor to submit the following report relative to the surrender of the fort and forces at Athens, Ala., on the 24th day of September, 1864, to Major General N. B. Forrest, C. S. Army:
On the 23rd day of September, 1864, about 3 o'clock in the afternoon, was informed by --- Burley, railroad employe, that he had been down the railroad some four miles toward Decatur, Ala., and discovered a body of the enemy, as he supposed, some 200 or 300 strong, tearing up and destroying the track. I immediately ordered 100 men to report at the railroad depot, expecting every moment the evening train from Nashville. As soon as the train arrived, at 4 o'clock, placed my men on a car and started down the road, went four miles from town, found enemy on track, deployed skirmishers, and drove them. They had set fire to a small trestle. I pushed forward and extinguished the fire and crossed with the