Thursday, October 4, 2007

ON THIS DAY: Tuesday, Oct. 8, 1861

In Kentucky, Brig. Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman unhappily takes over the Union Department of the Cumberland from Brig. Gen. Robert Anderson, who is suffering from nervous exhaustion. Sherman himself is in a state of nervous anxiety, in no condition to take responsibility for a region where he see dangers in every direction. Sherman’s command will not end happily.

In western Virginia, cold, wet weather plagues Ohio’s soldiers, and sickness spreads. Forty men of the 7th Ohio are reported sick today, including 1st Lt. William H. Robinson of Company G, which had been organized in Ravenna. Robinson dies later today and is taken to Grafton for burial. Elsewhere in the Kanawha region, Maj. Rutherford B. Hayes of the 23rd Ohio writes wife Lucy of his experiences in the past 24 hours. While he was working in the rain, helping load sick men into wagons for transportation back to Ohio, word came of an “enemy attack.” Hayes rushed three-quarters of a mile from the hospital to his camp, only to find the alarm arose from no more than an enemy scouting party driving in the Union picket guards. In the meantime, many sick soldiers, panic stricken, fled the hospital, going three or four miles down the road during the rain in a needless attempt to escape.

No comments: