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Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 31.djvu/177

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Zollicoffer's Oak. 169

29th Tennessee at Shiloh, Murfreesboro, Chickamauga, Missionary Ridge, Ringgold, Jonesboro, Franklin, Nashville, in the Atlanta campaign wrested from fate superb renown. The i6th Alabama at Shiloh, Chickamauga, Ringgold, Jonesboro, Franklin, wrote in let- ters of blood a story of unsurpassed patriotic courage.

The bodies of the Confederate soldiers, numbering in the neigh- borhood of 200, including the wounded which died, were placed in rows on the top of the ground, near Zollicoffer's oak, around them log pens were built and then covered over with earth, and so far as now known, the name of not a single hero who thus died is recorded. Into those log pens their bodies were piled and their bloody blankets were spread over their pale faces, and thus they have rested in un- honored, unmarked graves for more than forty years.

The United States government has established a national cemetery within a half mile of the battlefield. It was first called the Logan's Cross Roads Cemetery, but has since had its named changed to the Mill Spring National Cemetery. It was established in 1862. There have been 708 interments 350 known and 365 unknown Federals are resting amid its avenues. Two acres are in the cemetery proper; one and a half acres constitute a little park by its side. These dead have received all the oversight and attention that a generous and grateful nation could bestow upon its soldier dead. It is now in

charge of Fonda, a New York veteran, who keeps it with

scrupulous care. Half a mile away, in a forest full of underbrush, without mark or slab, the dust of the Confederate heroes reposes.

These Confederates, who with nothing but flintlock muskets on that Sunday morning charged through the slush and rain, deserve none the less glory than the men who died at Shiloh, triumphed at Chickamauga, or went down in death as they clambered up the heights of Gettysburg or along the hillsides of the Potomac at Antietam, or amid the awful carnage at Franklin or the incessant hostilities of the Atlanta campaign. None who loved them have come to shed a tear at the common bier of these heroes of the South who on Kentucky soil made the supreme sacrifice for Southern independence.

Early in March, 1903, I received a letter from Miss Ellanetta Har- rison, daughter of G. P. Harrison, a native Virginian, but who en- listed in Company K, ist Tennessee Cavalry. Born a Virginian, an only son, his father did everything possible to keep him out of the army. Little more than a child, three times he ran away and en- tered the service. His father took him home and put two substitutes