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

Page 192 KY., MID. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA. Chapter XXXV.

Cavalry, in the engagement with the enemy at Brentwood and vicinity, on the 25th instant:After a disagreeable march of some 18 miles from Hillsborough, on the morning of the 25th we arrived in the vicinity of Brentwood about 8 a. m., when our regiment was detached from your brigade and marched, under thee direction of General [N. B.] Forrest, to the right on to the pike leading from Brentwood to Franklin, and we struck this pike half a mile south of the enemy's encampment. Here the enemy's infantry were discovered in force in a skirt of timber on the left of the pike. A refusal was given to the demand for surrender, made by General Forrest. Our regiment, being drawn up in line of battle, was ordered to dismount and engage the enemy immediately. This was promptly done, and a brisk fire opened upon him, partially protected as he was by the trees and undergrowth on the slopes opposite the encampments. Our fire was replied to which animation, but our men continued to advance rapidly upon the foe, driving him from his shelter to within the breastworks, where he surrendered in about thirty minutes from the first fire. Here some 500 men yielded to the Tenth Regiment. We were immediately ordered to mount and march upon the stockade fort, 1 1/2 miles on the railroad, in the direction of Franklin. Upon arriving in range of the fort, I ordered my men to dismount, and, not being apprised of the fact that Major [C. W.] Anderson was in negotiation (under a flag of truce) on the subject of a surrender, I ordered a fire to be opened upon the enemy outside of the fortifications. A few rounds were given without electing a reply, when a shell was thrown from Captain [S. L.] Freeman's battery, and speedily a white flag was discovered, and about 200 of the enemy surrendered.

There were captured in all some 12 or 15 wagons and teams, 4 ambulances, and a considerable quantity of arms, army stores, and medical supplies. No regiment, except the Tenth, took any active part in either engagement, that I am aware of.

After destroying the camp equipage and whatever else that could not be brought off, we were ordered to bring up the rear. Through the entreaties of Surgeon [Julius] Johnson, our regiment was detained a few minutes to procure an ambulance and get off the wounded. This was accomplished, and, after proceeding something like 2 miles from the scene of action, suddenly and unexpectedly a cry was raised that the enemy were firing upon our rear, by a company of stragglers from other commands, who came dashing headlong through our regiment, causing the greatest disorder and confusion. Steps were taken as soon as possible to form a line and prepare for the reception of the foe, but very soon the panic spread over the whole regiment, and all efforts of the officers were unavailing to get any considerable number in battle array.

Among the most conspicuous in rallying and encouraging the troops should be mentioned Captain Thomas [S.] Easley, Company G, who displayed most signal presence of mind and courage, and who, in company with Lieuts. [J. T.] Crews and B. [A.] Powell, Privates John Sargent, Sullivan, and Caswell Cock (of Captain Swingley's squadron), and others, whose names cannot now be recollected, under charge of our gallant Adjutant [E. A.] Spotswood, remained firm and undaunted, and joined in the column, led on by General Forrest, in routing and pursuing the enemy within sight of thee burning tents of Brentwood.

Our loss, as appears from the surgeon's report, is slight. First Lieutenant A. F. Nesbitt, Company E, the only man killed, fell, gallantly leading his men in the attack on Brentwood. Five were wounded and 31 missing of the regiment.

Page 192 KY., MID. AND E. TENN., N. ALA., AND SW. VA. Chapter XXXV.