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ors' hands. More than 13,000 prisoners, Brigadier-General Buckner, with twenty Colonels and other officers in proportion; sixty-five cannon, forty-eight field and seventeen siege guns, a million and a half dollars in stores, provisions, and equipage, twenty thousand stand of arms— was glorious result, purchased at comparatively small loss. The Federal loss in killed and wounded was 2,200; that of the rebels 1,275.
At the storming of Fort Donelson many acts of personal valor might be recorded. An instance of reckless gallantry, and fortitude under a most painful surgical operation, that of Hamilton, a son of Professor Leiber, is worthy Of record. This young man was twice wounded in the battle of Fort Donelson. The first was a flesh wound, of which he made nothing. Presently, however, he was struck by a Minie ball in the same arm; this shattered his elbow, with the bones above and below, and he sank to the ground, fainting with loss of blood. He was picked up towards night, carried to a house, and thence, over a rough road, in an army wagon, to the river bank, a distance of three miles, which necessarily caused the greatest suffering. Arrived at the river bank, he was put on board a boat and conveyed with other wounded to an hospital, where his arm was amputated. When the operation was over, the brave young fellow's first words were, "How long will it be before I can rejoin my company?" At that time young Leiber was a Lieutenant of the Ninth Illinois regiment. He was appointed aid-de-camp by General Ilalleck soon after the battle of Donelson as a reward for his great bravery.
THE OCCUPATION 0F NASHVILLE.
February 25, 1862.
After the surrender of Fort Donelson, on the 16th of February, it became evident to the Confederate leaders that the cities of Nashville and Memphis, and other important positions must soon fall into the hands of the victorious Federal army. Public meetings were held at both these cities, in which it was recommended to defend them to the last extremity, and if necessary to prevent their occupancy by the Union troops, many of the more violent and reckless of the military determined that they should be burned, and every description of property destroyed. At Nashville, the Governor, Isham G. Harris, pledged himself to "shed his blood, fight like a lion, and die like a martyr," rather than submit to the enemy; and at the same time efforts were made, but with little success, to organize additional forces for defence.
During the progress of the siege at Fort Donelson, dispatches were sent to Nashville, announcing a series of rebel successes, and on Saturday night information was conveyed that the Federals had again been defeated both on land and water, but they had been reinforced and might renew the attack in the morning. With these hopeful and ex ulting assurances, the city rested in peace, confident that the light of the morning would open upon a glorious victory for the rebel arms.
Early on the morning of Sunday the first rumors of this heavy calamity to the rebel cause had been conveyed to the leaders in Nashville. At first, suppressed whispers and grave countenances indicated that something important had transpired. But the people generally were confident and hopeful as on the evening before, and anticipated that any hour of the day would give the signal for a grand jubilee and rejoicing. The time for public service in the churches drew near, and the people repaired to their several places of worship. The churches were partly filled and the streets crowded with the passing multitude, when a startling rumor broke the peaceful stillness of the day. The Federals were victorious! Fort Donelson had surrendered! Fifteen thousand Confederate prisoners had laid down their arms to the invaders! Fear, added to imagination, ran riot in the town.
It was said that the Federal troops had already reached Robertson, a place about twenty-five miles from Nashville, connected by railroad, and that the gunboats were at Clarksville, on the river, on their way to the city. Governor Harris, taking advantage of his early information, had hastily convened the members of the Legislature, then in session at Nashville, which had met, and adjourned to convene at Memphis. These circumstances becoming known, gave plausibility to the exciting rumors of the celerity of the Federal movements, and the people were panic stricken.
Before nightfall hundreds of citizens, singly and in families, were making their way South, many of them having no idea why they were thus recklessly abandoning comfortable homes, or where they were going. Toward night it was announced that the military authorities would throw open the public stores to all who would carry the property away.
This excitement continued throughout Sunday night, constantly gaining strength, aided by the destruction of two gunboats which were in process of construction—two fine New Orleans packets, the James Woods and James Johnson, having been taken for that purpose. The army of General Johnston commenced its retreat, encamping by regiments at convenient points outside of the city. On Monday morning, great excitement prevailed; the public stores were distributed to some extent among the people, while the army and hospitals were making heavy requisitions, and pressing all the vehicles and men that could be obtained to carry supplies to their camp. At the same time, considerable quantities of stores were removed to the depots for transportation south. Evening came, and no gunboats—no Federal army from Kentucky. General Johnston left for the Sputh, placing General Floyd in command, assisted by Generals Pillow and Hardee. The apprehensions of the near approach of the enemy having been found groundless, it was determined by General Floyd that the distribution of the stores was premature. An order was sent to close the warehouses, and a force detailed to collect what had been given out. This was done, so far as practicable—but on Tuesday the distribution commenced again, and continued with slight restrictions, under the eyes of the most judicious citizens, until Saturday morning. Tuesday night the iron and railroad bridges across the Cumberland were destroyed, in spite of the most earnest and persistent remonstrances of leading citizens. The iron-bridge cost about one hundred and fifty thousand dollars, and the railroad bridge two hundred and fifty thousand dollars. It was one of the finest drawbridges in the country.
The scenes which were enacted during the following days, up to Monday morning the 24th, were still more exciting. The untiring energy of the Mayor and city authorities, who throughout this whole affair acted with prudence and zeal, was inadequate to keep the excited people under control.
On Sunday morning, twenty-five Federal pickets breakfasted in Edgefield, opposite the city, and during the morning eight of them seized a little stern-wheeled steamer that had been used as a ferry, and refused to permit it to continue its trips. Mayor Cheatham immediately crossed in a skiff, but found no officer with whom he could negotiate. In the evening, Colonel Emmet, of the Fourth Ohio Cavalry arrived, and sent a message to the Mayor, requesting his presence. The interview was satisfactory on both sides, though the formal surrender of the city was deferred until the arrival of General Mitchell, who was expected on Sunday night or Monday morning.
On Monday morning the city became comparatively quiet. In the evening Generals Buell and Mitchell arrived in Edgefield, and understanding that the authorities had appointed a committee, consisting of the Mayor and several of the leading citizens, he sent a message requesting an interview. The hour of the interview was fixed at eleven o'clock, A. M. on Tuesday. In the mean time General Nelson arrived in the city about eight o'clock, A. M., in command of a fleet, consisting of one gunboat, the Cairo, and eight transports. Transports continued to arrive during the day, and at night the number reached eighteen or twenty. A large portion of this army disembarked during the morning, and occupied the public square, encamping in the vicinity at night. At eleven o'clock, the committee of citizens were conveyed by order of General Buell to Edgefield, on the steamer Hillman. They were met at the landing by Generals Nelson and Mitchell, and escorted to General Buell's headquarters. The interview was an amicable one, General Buell giving assurance that the personal liberty and property of all citizens would be fully protected, and no State institutions of any kind interfered with.
The first business of General Buell, after having thus established a cordial understanding with the officers of the city, was to inaugurate his military authority by the appointment of a Provost-Marshal, to preserve order, and regulate the intercourse of the Union troops with the citizens. Colonel Stanley Matthews, a highly respected and well-known gentleman, conservative in politics, was selected for this responsible position, an appointment which was greeted with satisfaction by the citizens. The post-office was continued in the hands of Colonel J. H. Markland, a native Kentuckian, and a gentleman of high character and social standing. >
General Buell immediately restored the mail facilities, which had so long been denied the people by the rebellion, and adopted every measure to ensure and restore confidence among the citizens. Many of them had fled their homes during the panic, the stores and places of business were closed, and the whole community were perfectly paralyzed during the week that had intervened between the fall of Fort Donelson and the occupation of the city. Eight days of terror afforded them a fearful illustration of lawlessness and violence: and when the Federal troops took possession, their sobriety, decorum and uprightness, amazed the people with the1 contrast. The loss of many of their relatives, the deep hostility that had been engendered in their breasts, and the doubts as to the ultimate restoration of the Federal authority, made the development of loyal sentiments a work of time and patience. The retreat of the national forces from Nashville, and the withdrawal of the protection of the Government, would be the death-warrant of any person committing himself too openly for the Union cause ; and many citizens allowed these contending motives to restrain their welcome to the flag under which they had so long enjoyed peace, prosperity and repose.
The government at Washington took an early opportunity to appoint a military governor for the State of Tennessee, in the person of Hon. Andrew Johnson, a man who had long represented its people as Governor and United States Senator.
Some of the ladies of Nashville were peculiarly ardent in their dislike of the Union occupation, and took especial pains to avoid or sneer at the glorious old flag which was directly hoisted in the most prominent parts of the town.
Over the large gate at the Provost-Marshal's splendid headquarters— Elliott's female school—a Union flag was hoisted. A very ardent secesh lady, who wished to see Colonel Matthews, was about to pass through the gate, when looking up she beheld the proud flag streaming on the breeze. Starting back horror-struck, she held up her hands and exclaimed to the guard: •
"Dear! I can't go under that dreadful Lincoln flag. Is there no other way for me to enter?"
"Yes, madam," promptly replied the soldier, and turning to his comrade, he said:
"Here, orderly, bring out that rebel flag and lay it on the ground at the little gate, and let this lady walk over it!" *
The lady looked bewildered, and after hesitating a moment, concluded to bow her head to the flag which had so long protected her, and passed under it with submissive grace.
POET CLINCH AND PEBNANDINA, PLA.
On the 28th of February, 1862, Commodore S. F, Dupont, commanding the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, set sail from Port Royal, S. C, the headquarters of General Sherman, for the purpose of taking military possession of the forts and towns on the coasts of Georgia and Florida. Brigadier-General Wright accompanied him, as commander of the land forces. The squadron consisted of twenty vessels of war, seven transports, and a few schooners and smaller vessels.
The first point of attack was to be Fernandina, Fla., an important sea-port near the entrance of St. Mary's river, the boundary between Georgia and Florida. The main channel is between Cumberland and Amelia islands, with fourteen feet of water on the bar.
Fort Clinch, a regular bastioned work of brick, with heavy casemates, and guns mounted en barbette, commanded the entrance. This place had been strongly fortified by the rebels and mounted with guns of the heaviest calibre. Commodore Dupont anticipated a stubborn resistance, but the garrison, on learning the approach of the formidable expedition, deemed their position indefensible, and evacuated the fort, leaving twelve of their heaviest guns behind.
The town of Fernandina was also occupied by the Federal forces without any resistance. Many of the inhabitants had fled, and those remaining were terrified on the approach of the vessels, having been assured by the rebels that the national forces would subject them to unrestrained pillage and abuse. The kind and conciliatory government instituted by General Wright soon restored confidence, and the people returned to their homes and occupations. 21