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179 Series I Volume XXIII-I Serial 34 - Tullahoma Campaign Part I


of Nashville for several hours, and everything indicated a general attack in our front and rear, a thing which we desired, as we regarded our position one not to be trifled with. However, I drew back nearly all the cavalry from the front, in order to re-enforce General Smith, and had dispatched him to that effect, when I received a message from his saying that he had fallen back on Brentwood, and was then waiting orders. I was greatly surprised, for I expected him to harass thee enemy's rear until re-enforcements could come up and enable him to take the offensive. I had infantry and a battery also in readiness to push up rapidly, and had the cavalry hung heavily upon their rear and forced them to move slowly, which they would have been compelled to do with thee Harpeth River to cross in their rear, our re-enforcements would have come up, and, I believe, the rebel expedition would have been scattered to the four winds, and our mild and water soldiers under Bloodgood and Bassett, who did not defend themselves nor the stockade at Brentwood, must have been recaptured.

From all I can ascertain, Lieutenant-Colonel Bloodgood surrendered Brentwood, and Captain [E. B.] Bassett thee stockade, unnecessarily, after firing but very few shots, and without having a man either killed or wounded. Had they fought for one hour, our cavalry and infantry would have arrived on the spot and cut the rebels to pieces. I visited the stockade in person, and found it very strong-capable of holding 200 men-and it could easily have been defended for a long time, but not a mark of a bullet could be discovered on it.

As many of the men had scattered off to Nashville, I am unable to report our exact loss at present, but it must amount to about 600.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major-General, Commanding.

Colonel C. GODDARD,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

Numbers 3. Report of Brigadier General G. Clay Smith, U. S. Army, commanding Fourth Cavalry Brigade, Department of the Cumberland.

Franklin, Tenn., March 27, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to report the result of the cavalry engagement on Wednesday, the 25th instant.

Early in the morning the enemy were pressing our pickets on the roads in front, when General Granger directed me to re-enforce them sufficiently to push forward and ascertain the movements of the rebels. About 8.30 a. m. it was discovered that 1,000 or 1,500 rebel cavalry, under Colonel Starnes, had crossed the Big Harpeth some 8 or 10 miles to the left, and were marching on Brentwood, 9 miles to the rear. General Granger ordered me with the remainder of my cavalry to that station. Upon reaching the railroad bridge, half a mile this side, it was found that the rebels had accomplished their work, burned the bridge, captured the infantry posted there, destroyed the camp, and were moving westerly with our wagons, guns, and prisoners.

My force was between 560 and 700 men. I directed Colonel Watkins, with the Sixth Kentucky, 200 men, and two companies of the