Wednesday, December 11, 2013

December 12, 1863 (Saturday): Forrest at Large

General Nathan B. Forrest

CORINTH, December 12, 1863.
Major-General HURLBUT,
    I learn from several sources that General Forrest has ordered all troops in West Tennessee to Jackson, and is organizing for a raid upon the railroad. All the small detachments that were around Purdy and Hamburg have gone to Jackson. The train that passed down to Savannah, I am inclined to think, took down arms and ammunition for Forrest. He has quite a force. Fifteen hundred unarmed conscripts at Jackson, and promised to arm them speedily. I also learn from a citizen from Middle Tennessee that conscripts are being sent across the Tennessee River to Forrest. My opinion is that you will have to prepare for a demonstration from Forrest, who will have at least 6,000 men, perhaps more.
    We are having a steady rain to-day which will render all streams temporarily past fording. If expeditions could be projected at the same time from La Grange, Union City, and Corinth, General Forrest and his command might be effectually disposed of.


Official Records, Series I., Vol. 31, Part 3, Page 395.

Joseph Johnston said had Forrest had the benefit of a military education he might have become the central military character of the war.  


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