Today in History:

153 Series I Volume XX-I Serial 29 - Murfreesborough Part I


Numbers 9. Reports of Brigadier General John H. Morgan, C. S. Army, commanding expedition.*

Campbellsville, Ky., December 31, 1862.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report that thus far the success of this expedition is complete, and that every object that was contemplated has Ky., on December 24. My advance guard, on entering the town shortly after dark, fell in with four companies of the Second Michigan Cavalry. A slight skirmish ensued, in which I lost 3 wounded (2 mortally), and the enemy had 4 or 5 killed and wounded and some 20 taken prisoners. The enemy passed through town in the direction of Munfordville.

The next morning I moved forward early with my command. About 10 miles this side of Green River, a slight skirmish took place, in which none were hurt on either side, and we captured several prisoners.

The next morning I sent part of my command to take the stockade at Bacon Creek, while I moved on with the main body to Upton and Nolin. By 4 p.m. all the places had surrendered and the stockades and trestles were on fire. That night I encamped at Nolin, having taken and paroled some 200 prisoners, with only 2 or 3 slightly wounded on my side.

The next morning I moved to Elizabethtown. On arriving near the place, much to my surprise, I was met by a flag of truce, informing me that I was surrounded, and demanding an unconditional surrender of myself and command. To this proposition I declined to accede, and made a counter demand for an unconditional surrender. On its being refused, I immediately began to shell the houses in which the enemy had taken refuge. After a brisk firing of three-quarters of an hour from the batteries and skirmishers, the place was surrendered. Eight companies were taken and paroled. Three bridges were burned, and the entire track for miles set on fire.

December 28 I moved toward the long trestles, about 5 and 6 miles from Elizabethtown. I sent Colonel Breckinridge and command toward one trestle, while I moved with the remainder toward the other. I sent in flags of truce, demanding a surrender, which was declined. I then opened fire, and after some shelling and skirmishing for about an hour the stockades surrendered. The stockades, trestles, and a quantity of army stores were destroyed. About 700 prisoners were taken and paroled. No one on either side killed or wounded. I moved on that night to the Rolling Fork and encamped.

Next morning, just as the rear of my command was crossing the fork, the enemy began shelling me in the rear. I immediately threw out some six or seven companies as skirmishers, drove back their line, finished crossing the river, and moved on to Bardstown that same night. Here I turned my course and began to march southward.

On the morning of the 30th I left Bardstown, and reached Springfield the same evening. Hearing at Springfield that there was a large force of the enemy at Lebanon, I determined not to attack them, but to elude them by leaving Lebanon on my left and by making a night march, which I accomplished successfully, and reached this point, leaving the


*For General Bragg's letter transmitting this, with Forrest's report, see Series I, Vol. XVII, Part I, p. 591.