Saturday, April 10, 2010

From Tennessee

CAIRO, April 28.

Six refugees from Memphis arrived here this morning. They left on Sunday afternoon the 20th in a [skiff] and reached our fleet opposite Fort Pillow on Friday. Five of them are natives of Tennessee, and the other from Freeport, Ill. They crossed the Mississippi six miles below Rondo, making the rest of the way to Osceola through the backwater on the Arkansas shore. They represent the strongest union feeling existing in Memphis. Several union clubs meet nightly and are constantly increasing in numbers.

Gen. Prentiss and the federal prisoners taken at the Pittsburg landing were in Memphis 24 hours and taken to Tuscaloosa, Ala. They received marked attentions from Union citizens while in the city, who are becoming bolder daily.

Gen. Prentiss made a speech from the platform of a car, assuring the people they would all cheer for the stars and stripes in two or three weeks. Our prisoners united in singing the “Star Spangled Banner” and were loudly applauded by the people!

The refugees left Memphis to avoid being impressed, as the conscript act, recently passed by the rebel congress, was being enforced. Large numbers were daily leaving the city and making their way towards our fleet.

Van Dorn, Price and Jeff. Thompson are at Memphis with about 6,000 troops, partly equipped and most of their clothing in rags.

Gov. Harris is at Corinth.

Some 6,000 hhds. of sugar and between 10,000 & 15,000 bbls. of molasses were piled up below the city ready to be thrown into the river on the approach of the federal fleet, which was daily expected. It was generally conceded by rebels that our fleet would compel them to evacuate Fort Pillow, where Gen. Villippegue was still in command.

It was reported that Gen. Curtis’ scouts had reached the mouth of white river and that his advance was within a day’s march.

The gunboat Mallory has been in course of construction for some time, and was rapidly approaching completion. She is plated with railroad iron.

Rebel gunboats were continually plying between Memphis and Fort Pillow.

The fortifications near Memphis have been abandoned, there being no mounted guns on them.

Negroes had recently advanced considerably in value. At an auction sale two weeks ago, several were sold at prices ranging from $500 to $1,000.

Coffee 80c; rice 7 ½; butter 50c; bacon 25c; chickens $1 each; eggs 40c per dozen.

Boats from below report nothing new.

The mortars fire occasionally, but with what effect is not known.

Gen. Halleck is moving forward slowly.

A reconnoisance in force, commanded by Gen. Garfield, went out Friday and discovered the enemy’s advance some miles beyond our outposts, encamped on Pea Ridge.

The pickets are continually firing on each other.

Our heavy siege guns are being moved to the front as fast as the condition of the roads will permit.

Our army at Pittsburg is still gradually advancing, but everything is quite. A reconnaissance on Friday discovered the enemy in camp at Pea Ridge, some 12 miles beyond our lines of pickets, but we did not advance to attack them.

There is no news from Fort Pillow. The mortars fire occasionally.

CHICAGO, April 29.

The Tribune’s special from Cairo says that rebel cavalry have recently appeared in considerable force on the Tennessee river 20 below Savannah, and one of the gunboats had been sent down to watch their movements.

All boats leaving this point for above carry two brass pieces on the bow, one on each side, besides a guard on the hurricane deck.

– Published in The Davenport Daily Gazette, Davenport, Iowa, Wednesday Morning, April 30, 1862, p. 1

1 comment:

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