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keeping disreputable persons in his employ; and that he had unjustly suppressed the St. Louis Evening News. Other parties, about the same time, made complaints through the public prints of his extravagance in his purchases, of his unnecessarily fortifying St. Louis, of his having given contracts to California speculators, and of his wasting the public money in the construction of gunboats.
No trial was bad on these charges, although they were the subject of two special ex parte investigations; and it may be remarked that subsequent developments, the course of his successor, General Halleck, and his own appointment to another important independent command, appear to have exonerated him at least from those which were most insisted upon.
We will now proceed with the narrative of events. The Federal garrison of Lexington, which, on the 29th of August, had repulsed a greatly superior force of rebel troops, consisted of only four hundred and thirty men. There was reason to suppose that General Price intended to attack the place so soon as his forces, which were collecting at Springfield, should become sufficiently large to enable him to do so. Accordingly, on the 1st of September, General Fremont ordered Colonel Mulligan, then at Jefferson City, in command of the Irish brigade, to re-enforce the garrison at Lexington, which, though intrenched, needed a larger body of troops. Colonel Mulligan arrived at the town on the 9th of September. It lies on the south side of the Missouri River (which here flows from west to east), one hundred and twenty miles west of Jefferson City, and contained at that time not far from five thousand inhabitants. It is situated on a high rocky bluff, which slopes almost precipitously directly down to the bed of the river, making a very steep ascent from the landing up into the city. Old Lexington was the early settlement, situated back on the hill. It has been superseded by New Lexington, farther up the river, where the steamboat landing now is, and which is the principal village. There are scattering houses along the bluff between the two, and both are now united under the name of Lexington. From the rear of the city the land recedes slightly in alternate successions of beautiful prairie and choice timber, and is well occupied by finely-cultivated farms, yielding a rich support to this hitherto thriving place.
The re-enforcements brought by Colonel Mulligan raised the whole strength of the garrison to about eighteen hundred men, including several hundred home guards. His artillery consisted of five brass pieces and two mortars, but the mortars were valueless, as he had no shells. He at once commenced increasing and strengthening the fortifications, which were placed on Masonic Hill, between the old and new towns, and consisted of earthworks ten feet in height, with a ditch eighth feet in width. Within these fortifications was a solid brick building, erected for a college, which was used as quarters for the Union soldiers, and had been strengthened to resist an artillery attack. The lines of the fortifications were extensive, and were capable of containing a force of ten thousand men.
On the 7th of September a detachment of the Federal troops went from Lexington to Warrensburg, twenty miles distant, and took a
quantity of coin from the bank there, but were pursued by the Confederate forces under General Price, who was in the vicinity of Warrensburg. They reached Lexington on the 11th, and on the 12th the Federal pickets were driven in by skirmishers from the advance-guard of the Confederates, under command of General Rains, who attacked them with nine pieces of artillery, but was repulsed. Skirmishes occurred every day after this, and meantime the Confederate force was constantly increasing. Colonel Mulligan dispatched messengers to Jefferson City for re-enforcements, but they were captured. General Fremont had, however, learned of his critical position, and made efforts to relieve him, but unsuccessfully. The Confederates had surrounded the town, and their force was so large that they could repel the troops sent to the relief of the beleaguered town. Fifteen hundred Iowa troops, who had arrived within sixteen miles of the river, were met by a greatly superior force and compelled to retire. Major Sturgis, with four thousand more, reached the north bank of the river a few miles below, but the Confederates had destroyed or captured all the ferry-boats for miles above and below, and they could not cross in time. General Lane, from the south-west, near the Kansas River, and Colonel Davis, from the south-east, had both been sent forward, and their united forces amounted to eleven thousand men; but they could not reach the scene of action till it was too late.
Affairs, meantime, were getting desperate with the besieged. On the 17th the water gave out, and the Confederates had cut them off from the river, while the shells, falling into the intrenchments, where their cattle, horses, and mules were picketed, and their train was placed, produced great havoc. Rations also began to grow short, and the home guard were becoming discouraged and mutinous. On the 18th, General Price sent a summons to Colonel Mulligan to surrender, to which that gallant commander replied: "If you want us, you must take us." The sufferings of the Federal troops for water were very severe. A shower of rain falling, they spread out their blankets, and, absorbing what they could of it, wrung it out and drank it. The moon through the nights shone brightly, and the firing night and day was incessant. It was evident, however, to the gallant Colonel, that his little force could not hold out longer, and, after several desperate charges of the enemy had been repulsed, he sent out a flag of truce for a parley on the afternoon of the 20th September. The only terms General Price would grant were unconditional surrender, the officers to be retained as prisoners of war, the men to be allowed to depart with their personal property, surrendering their arms and accoutrements.
Reluctantly this was acceded to, and the surrender took place. At four P. M. on Saturday, the 21st, the Federal forces, having laid down their arms, were marched out of the intrenchments to the tune of "Dixie," played by the rebel band. They left behind them their arms and accoutrements, reserving only their clothing. The prisoners were first made to take the oath not to serve against the Confederate States, when they were sent across the river, and, in charge of General Rains, marched to Richmond, sixteen miles; from there they were marched to Harville and released.
The Confederate General Price, in his official report, stated the results as follows:
"Our entire loss in this series of engagements amounts to twenty-five killed and seventy-two wounded. The enemy's loss was much greater. The visible fruits of this almost bloodless victory are great. About three thousand five hundred prisoners, among whom are Colonels Mulligan, Marshall, Peabody, and Whitigrover, Major Van Horn and one hundred and eighteen other commissioned officers, five pieces of artillery, and two mortars, over thirty-three thousand stand of infantry arms, a large number of sabres, about seven hundred and fifty horses, many sets of cavalry equipments, wagons, teams, ammunition, more than one hundred thousand dollars worth of commissary stores, and a large amount of other property. In addition to all this, I obtained the restoration of the great seal of the State and the public records, which had been stolen from their proper custodian, and about nine hundred thousand dollars in money, of which the bank at this place had been robbed, and which I have caused to be returned to it."
There is good reason to believe that Price's return of killed and wounded was much greater than he has stated. His return of prisoners captured is grossly inaccurate.
The force of Colonel Mulligan had been weakened by the desertion of many of the home guard, and at the time of his surrender the number of officers and men was actually only two thousand six hundred and forty. The Confederate force was about twenty-one thousand five hundred. The loss of men snstained on the Federal side, in the course of the siege, was forty-two killed and one hundred and eight wounded. General Fremont learned of the surrender on the 23d, and immediately forwarded to Washington the following dispatch:
"HEAD-QUARTERS WESTERN DEPARTMENT,
"Colonel E. D. TOWNSEND, Adjutant-General:
"I have a dispatch from Brookfield that Lexington has fallen into Price's hands, he having cut off Mulligan's supply of water. Re-enforcements, four thousand strong, under Sturgis, by the capture of ferry-boats, had no means of crossing the river in time. Lane's forces, from the southwest, and Davis's, from the southeast, upwards of eleven thousand in all, could also not get there in time. I am taking the field myself, and hope to destroy the enemy either before or after the junction of the forces under McCulloch. Please notify the President immediately.
"J. C. FREMONT, "Major-General Commanding.”
There was considerable excitement throughout the country at the intelligence of General Mulligan's surrrender, and there were not wanting those who bestowed severe censure upon General Fremont for not re-enforcing him; but when the circumstances were fully understood, it appeared that these censures were unjust. Colonel Mulligan himself declared that General Fremont was not in fault. The troops he had ordered to Lexington to aid the besieged were more than threefourths of his entire available force at this time.
Pursuant to his telegraphic dispatch to the Government, under date of September 23d, General Fremont, on the 27th of September, left St. Louis for Jefferson City, and soon concentrated there twenty thousand men, preparatory to an advance on Lexington. Price, at Lexington, had meantime been preparing for an offensive
movement. His effective force was about twenty thousand. On September 28th he crossed over the river at Lexington, with four thousand mounted men. This force took up its line of march for the railroad, with the view of its total destruction, after which sad havoc was to have been made with all the Government forces in Northwest Missouri. But intelligence received from some of his spies at St. Louis and Jefferson City, led him to change his plans; Fremont was approaching, and might cut him off from his base in Southwestern Missouri. He therefore countermanded his order for sending troops to the railroad, and a messenger having been immediately dispatched after those already started, they recrossed the river on Sunday morning. That night Price issued orders for a movement south. In the mean time General Sturgis, who had been holding St. Joseph's, came down from the north in time to shell the rear-guard of Price from across the river, as they left Lexington; and General Hunter approached with his troops from Rolla. Price and all his force left on the 30th in the direction of Papinsville, but returned to Greenfield on the road to Springfield. General Fremont, who had followed westward as far as Warsaw, crossed the Osage River there after a short delay to bridge it, and moved towards Springfield by forced marches. General Sigel, leaving Bolivar, also pushed for Springfield. On the 25th of October, a rear-guard of two thousand Confederates, who held Springfield, was charged by three hundred of the body-guard of General Fremont, under Major Zagonyi, and routed, with a loss of ninety killed and wounded, the Federals losing fifteen killed, twenty-seven wounded, and ten missing. On the 27th, General Fremont occupied Springfield, after forced marches, in which his troops had suffered terribly. Meanwhile Lexington had been reoccupied by a Federal force. While Price was retreating, McCulloch was advancing from the south, and these two formed a junction, with which they again menaced Springfield.
The charges against General Fremont had led the Secretary of War, Hon. Simon Cameron, to visit Missouri in person, taking with him Adjutant-General Thomas. They made a rapid visit to St. Louis, and to the camp of the general at Tipton, and on their return to St. Louis transmitted to General Fremont the following order :
"ST. Louis, Mo., October 14th, 1861. “GENERAL:-The Secretary of War directs me to communicate the following, as his instructions for your government.
"In view of the heavy sums due, especially in the quartermaster's department in this city, amounting to some $4,500,000, it is important that the money which may now be in the hands of the disbursing officers, or be received by them, be applied to the current expenses of your army in Missouri, and these debts to remain unpaid until they can be properly examined, and sent to Washington for settlement: the disbursing officers of the army to disburse the funds, and not transfer them to irresponsible agents -in other words, those who do not hold commissions from the President, and are not under bonds. All contracts necessary to be made, to be made by the disbursing officers. The senior quartermaster here has been verbally instructed by the Secretary as above.
"It is deemed unnecessary to erect field-works around this city, and you will direct their discontinuance; also those, if any, in course of construction at Jefferson City. In this connection it is seen that a number of commissions have been given by you. No payments will be made to such officers, except to those whose appointments have been
approved by the President. This, of course, does not apply to the officers with volunteer troops. Colonel Andrews has been verbally so instructed by the Secretary; also, not to make transfers of funds except for the purpose of paying the troops.
"The erection of barracks near your quarters in this city to be at once discontinued. "The Secretary has been informed that the troops of General Lane's command are committing depredations on our friends in Western Missouri. Your attention is directed to this, in the expectation that you will apply the corrective.
"Major Allen desires the services of Captain Turnley for a short time, and the Secretary hopes you may find it proper to accede thereto. I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
"L THOMAS, Adjutant-General.
"Major-General J. C. FREMONT,
This order indicated that his removal was intended, but he still pushed on after the enemy, resolved, if possible, to achieve a victory before laying down his command. On the 2d of November, however, he received at Springfield an order to transfer his command to MajorGeneral Hunter, with which he promptly complied, and after issuing a farewell order, taking leave of his troops, he left for St. Louis, his staff and body-guard accompanying him. On the day previous to his removal, he had entered into an agreement with the Confederate General Price, by which both parties bound themselves to break up the practice of arrests for the mere entertainment or expression of political opinions, and to protect peaceable citizens in their houses. This agreement General Hunter repudiated on the 7th of November. The Federal force in Missouri at that time was estimated at twentyseven thousand men, of whom five thousand were under the imme diate command of General Hunter, four thousand under General Sigel, four thousand five hundred under General Asboth, five thousand five hundred under General McKinstry, four thousand under General Pope, two thousand five hundred under General Lane, and one thousand five hundred under General Sturgis. It was understood that General Price was at Cassville with twenty-five thousand men, and that McCulloch, with ten thousand more, was advancing with the intention of offering battle at Wilson's Creek, the scene of their former victory. The Union army was concentrating. Generals Lane, Sturgis, Pope, and McKinstry reached Springfield November 2d, and General Asboth, who accompanied General Fremont to St. Louis, left his division in charge of General Carr.
Kentucky.-Vote of the State.-Meeting of Legislature.-Message of Governor.— Kentucky for the Union.-Breckinridge's Proclamation.-Military Movements.Cairo. Columbus, its Position and Strength.-Paducah.-Concentration of Troops.Mill Spring.-Defeat and Death of Zollicoffer.-Construction of Gunboats.-Capture of Fort Henry.-Bowling Green Evacuated.-Fort Donelson.-Escape of Pillow and Floyd.-Fall of Nashville.-Columbus Evacuated.-Missouri under General Halleck.
THE State of Kentucky attempted to maintain her neutrality for several months after her Governor, Magoffin, had peremptorily refused