1st Illinois Lt Artillery soldier writes about vivid action shortly after Shiloh and Corinth

Letter written by P. Gamble
1st Illinois Light Artillery,

Hamburg, Tennessee,
April 26, 1862,

“…We are on the Tennessee River seventeen miles from Corinth…had the pleasure of taking over five thousand prisoners. We took our guns over and could not take but one section of our horses across by the same boat so we sent one section under the command of Lieut Vand{?} ahead and the rest of us waited for our horses…the section we sent ahead came in sight of the rebels at dark but did not attack them, but would in the morning if they had not surrendered to General Paine. When we got there in the morning they had the prisoners…I witnessed an engagement between our Gun boats and a three gun battery a little below New Madrid. The Gun Boats Carondolet & Essex wiped them out…went down in sight of Fort Pillow…stayed two or three days but did not leave the boat…got order to reinforce General Grant at Pittsburg Landing so we had to retrace our steps …Chester is promoted to the rank of Sergeant in our company now. He is off some three miles from here with his guns on a neighboring hill some three hundred feet higher than we are here. Oh Otis you ought to be here once just to see how much artillery we have got here. Well in once place there is for five miles a complete fence of artillery, from ten paces to ten rods apart, and we have lots of companies scattered around in several places, if ever Tennessee & Mississippi was Inhabited it is now….It is going to be one awful battle…Both sides are tyring to fortify as fast as time will permit. General Paine sent out Eighty wagon loads of shovels and picks for throwing up Breastworks and there is now nine thousand hard at work at the breastworks…The Pickets have skirmishes every day with the rebels, if we whip them out here & at Yorktown the war is over…we are bound to do it if we sacrifice the last man, the enemy is not afraid of us this time I guess for at the Battle of Pittsburg landing they came to attack us….Direct to Cairo in care of Capt. Houghtaling, Ottawa Light Artillery, General Paines Division on the Tennessee River…”

Source: Live Auctioneers online

2 thoughts on “1st Illinois Lt Artillery soldier writes about vivid action shortly after Shiloh and Corinth

  1. Pingback: April 6th in Tennessee Civil War History « Tennessee in the Civil War

  2. Pingback: April 7th in Tennessee Civil War History « Tennessee in the Civil War

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