Today in History:

62 Series I Volume XVI-I Serial 22 - Morgan's First Kentucky Raid, Perryville Campaign Part I

Page 62 KY., M. AND E.TENN., N.ALA., AND SW.VA. Chapter XXVIII.


The Commission is of opinion that General Buell is not responsible for the capture of the town, except so far as his failure to attack Bragg south of the Cumberland River made him responsible for that failure.

This implies that Bragg could have been and should have been attacked south of the Cumberland. I have discussed that point in the preceding pages of this communication.


The facts under this head are imperfectly and inaccurately stated, and the opinions, to my mind, show a misconception of the subject. The strength, positions, and to a great extent the movements of the opposing armies, with many other facts essential for a proper understanding of the subject, are omitted.

The rebel forces occupied a line extending from Lexington to Bardstown, Kirby Smith's force being on the right and Bragg's army proper on the left. It was to be presumed that those forces would concentrate when I moved against them, and it was "intended" to attack them whenever they could be properly brought to battle. It cannot be said that "an engagement was expected at Bardstown," though it was thought to be possible. The statement that "I next intended to attack him (Bragg) on the 9th of October" conveys no correct explanation of my plans and movements. The evidence shows that after reaching Perryville, where the enemy appeared to have concentrated, my instructions, given on the night of the 7th, contemplated an attack on his position on the morning of the 8th. That purpose was frustrated by the lateness of the arrival of the right and left corps, and it was deemed necessary to defer the attack until the next morning. The evidence is not that McCook's corps arrived at 9 o'clock on the 8th; the head of it arrived between 10 and 11. The evidence shows that General Thomas' staff officer about 1.30 o'clock reported the arrival of the head of the right corps; the rear division of it was not yet up. The staff officer took back to General Thomas more detailed instructions in regard to the disposition of that corps.

The camp of my headquarters was located the evening of the 7th at a proper distance in rear of the center corps, the disposition of which I personally directed, and it was not necessary or convenient to change my camp. The signal station for headquarters was somewhat in advance, on a high elevation, commanding a more extended view of the ground than any other.

The assertion that I-

should either have been on the field in person ready for emergencies and advantages, or have taken and required to be taken every precaution for the instant transmission of intelligence to my headquarters-

and that-

as I had an organized signal corps with my army, this failure was all the more culpable-

discloses a want of knowledge on the part of the commission of what was necessary to be done and misrepresentation of what was actually done. Had I considered my presence along the lines necessary I might as properly have been required on the right as on the left, in which case I should have been 5 miles from the left instead of 2 1/2 miles. The evidence

Page 62 KY., M. AND E.TENN., N.ALA., AND SW.VA. Chapter XXVIII.