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The Battle at Franklin.


November and December 1864

From The Missouri Democrat, Friday, December 2, 1864.



Gen. Thomas’s Army in Position Three Miles South of Nashville.

Another Battle Momentarily Expected.


Full and Interesting Particulars.



NASHVILLE, December 1.—The Federal forces under General Thomas retired from Franklin last night, and have taken position and formed a line of battle north of Nashville about three miles.

Skirmishing has been going on all day about five miles south of here. Heavy cannonading can be distinctly heard in the city.

No want of confidence is felt by the commanders in the ultimate success of the Federals. The employees of the quartermaster’s department are under arms and in the trenches.

One hundred and seven Confederate officers, including a brigadier general, several colonels and 1,000 prisoners, arrived in the city this morning. They were captured in the fight last night near Franklin.

A great battle may be momentarily expected.

NASHVILLE, Dec. 1.—The following dispatch was received from Franklin late last night:

FRANKLIN, Nov. 30, 1864.—To Major General Thomas: The enemy made a heavy and persistent attack, with about two corps, commencing at 4 P. M., and lasting until after dark, and was repulsed at every point, with heavy loss, probably of 5,000 or 6,000 men. Our loss is probably not more than one-fourth of that number. We have captured about 1,000 men including one brigadier general.

J. M. SCHOFIELD, Maj. Gen.

Parties who have arrived from the front, who were witnesses to the battle of yesterday, describe the attack of the rebel forces as desperate. Four charges were made upon the Federal line of masked batteries in a body four lines deep. Each time the rebels were repulsed with fearful loss. The fort is on the north bank of the river opposite the town, and extending up the river and encircling the town was the line of masked batteries.

Eye-witnesses say this engagement is desperation and furious fighting, was hardly equaled by the battle of Stone river.

Forrest in person was on the field, rallying his men. A rumor is in circulation that he was killed, but it lacks confirmation.

About seven o’clock last night heavy reinforcements reached Schofield, which caused a complete rout of the rebel forces.

The city to-day is full of the fleeing residents of Wiliamson and other counties south. They state Hood is gathering up all the horses, hogs and mules he can find, and sending them South.

There is a great panic among the negroes in counties south of Nashville, and numbers are flocking to the city for protection.

NASHVILLE, December 1.—Hood’s infantry force crossed Harpeth river this morning, and has not advanced that portion of his force since his cavalry crossed the Harpeth at the fords above Franklin this morning at daybreak, closely following General Wilson, who retired in this direction.

Skirmishing with the advance has occurred all day.

General Wilson occupies a strong position a few miles south of Nashville, and is able to resist any force the rebels may bring against him.

The Confederate general captured yesterday was Colonel Gordon, of the 11th Tennessee, brevet brigadier general.

An officer who witnessed the fight at Franklin yesterday, describes the battle as one of the most sanguinary of the war. The determined bravery of the Confederates exceeded anything before seen; although slaughtered by hundreds they still advanced against our batteries. Within five hours eleven distinct assaults were made against our works, each a failure.

Our forces, the battle being ended, quietly withdrew from the town.

Among the casualties to the Federals is Major General Stanley, wounded by a shot in the neck.

The rebel General Cheatham is reported wounded.

Among the killed are Captain Bissell, 128th Indiana; Captain Staley, 124th Indiana; the major of the 124th Indiana; Captain Hamilton, 124th Indiana; Captain Coughton, of General Cox’s staff; Captain Dowling, 111th Ohio.

Mortally wounded, Colonel Lawrie, 117th Illinois.

Wounded—Colonel Walters, 3d brigade, 1st division, in the shoulder; Colonel Conrad, who commanded a brigade in the 2d division.

Rebel casualties—Brigadier General Adams, killed; Brigadier General Scott, wounded.

The total loss of the enemy in killed, wounded and prisoners, is estimated at 4,000—3,000 being either killed or wounded.

The Federal loss in killed and wounded amounts to 700. The loss in prisoners is trifling. Our loss in regimental and field officers is very heavy.

General Bradley is also wounded and in the city.

Additional Federal wounded—Colonel Stockton and Major James, 72d Illinois.

It is rumored this evening that Hood is moving east towards Murfreesboro.