aggregate 469 efficient men. In addition to the colored troops there were 150 men belonging tot he THIRD Tennessee Cavalry, and two 12-pounder howitzers. On the night of the 23rd and 24th the colonel commanding caused nearly, if not quite, all the commissary stores at the post to be moved into the fortifications. These stores were thought ample for a siege of ten days. A well in the fort afforded a sufficient supply of water. As for the ammunition, there was at the time about 70,000 rounds elongated ball cartridges, and an ample supply for the carbines of the cavalrymen. For the howitzers there were 120 rounds each.
Our pickets were driven in at 5. 30 p. m. of the 23d, and from that time until long past dark there was a good deal of skirmishing. The night was passed in making preparations to receive the enemy and getting provisions into the fort.
On the morning of the 24th, about 7 o'clock, the enemy opened fire on the fort, throwing solid shot and shell from a battery planted on the Buck Island road. Shortly after they opened on us another battery from the Brown's ferry road. From these two batteries the enemy threw FIFTY-five or sixty shots. Of this number of shots twenty-four struck in the fort or buildings in the fort, causing the death of 1 man only, a non-combatant, and wounding 1 soldier. At 9 a. m. the enemy sent in a flag of truce demanding the surrender of the place; this was refused by Colonel Campbell. General Forrest then again demanded the surrender of the place, stating that he had ample force to take it and offering to show his force to Colonel Campbell. Colonel Campbell then called a council of officers commanding detachments, in which council, we are informed, but two officers voted in favor of a surrender, neither of whom had a command in the fort. Of the forty-five officers present in the fort at the time this council was held but eight were consulted, and of these eight there were several who had no command present with them in the fort, whilst officers who had the largest number of men under their charge were excluded. Colonel Campbell, after reviewing the forces of the enemy returned to the fort, saying, "The jig is up; pull down the flag," thus surrendering the best fortification on the line of the Nashville and Decatur Railroad.
We also feel it our duty to make mention of the bearing and disposition of the soldiers in the fort, both white and black. It was everything that any officer could wish of any set of men. So far from there being any disposition on the part of the men to surrender or to avoid a fight, it was just the reserve. Officers had to exert all their authority, even to threatening to shoot their own men, to restrain them from exposing themselves. The soldiers were anxious to try conclusion with General Forrest, believing that in such a work they could not be taken by ten times their number. When told that the fort had been surrendered, and that they were prisoners, they could scarcely believe themselves, but with tears demanded that the fight should to on, preferring to die in the fort they had made to being transferred to the tender mercies of General Forrest and his men. Another thing should be taken into consideration, which is that we were on the point of receiving re-enforcements.
While the truce was in operation and during the time occupied by Colonel Campbell in viewing the enemy's force, firing was heard on the Nashville and Decatur Railroad. This came from a force of our troops sent to our relief from Decatur, consisting of detachments from the Eighteenth Michigan and One hundred and second Ohio Infantry, numbering 360 men, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Elliott, of the One hundred and second Ohio, who was severely wounded. These brave men had forced their way through three lines of the enemy, were