Friday, September 30, 2016

Diary of Sergeant George G. Smith: April 13, 1863

The army had passed up the lake and had a fight at Franklin on the Tache Bayou, whipping them badly and capturing two thousand prisoners. The battle was fought on the twelth and thirteenth of April, Major Fiske of the First Louisiana and several privates were wounded besides two or three killed. My old regiment the thirteenth C V was said to have lost heavily in this battle. The troops were hot in the pursuit. Three gunboats', the Estella, Arazona, and Calhoun came down the lake with eighty prisoners, a part of the crew of the Queen of the West, our gunboats had destroyed in the morning. The commander of the Queen, Captain Fuller was among them. At 4 p. m. eighty more prisoners came in on a transport. As I stood by the gang plank of the transport, Captain Fuller was brought out on a stretcher. Seeing me with my orderly sergeant's insigna he saluted me and I returned the salute. His feet were scalded. Went on board the St. Mary with the wounded, steamed up the lake ten miles and came to anchor with three gunboats. The three wounded soldiers' wives were left behind as being too cumbersome and they return to New Orleans. Ten miles further up meeting with obstructions in the Bayou, we were compelled to leave the steamer and march fifteen miles to Franklin. On the way ravages of war was seen almost everywhere. But my gun, sword knapsack and equipments were my chief concern on account of their great weight and I was not sorry when we arrived in Franklin. The town was full of soldiers and prisoners of war but we found an empty negro shanty and turned in. The former occupants in their flight had left some of their live stock which annoyed us so much that our rest was not as quiet as might have been desired.

SOURCE: Abstracted from George G. Smith, Leaves from a Soldier's Diary, p. 44-6

No comments: