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9 Series I Volume XLV-I Serial 93 - Franklin - Nashville Part I

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Page 9 Chapter LVII. EXPEDITION TO BROOKHAVEN, MISS.

I had just returns from an arduous tour of personal inspection of the camps, warning the officers to be on the alert, and reached Liberty on the 15th.

On the night of the 16th officer commanding the main cam, at 3 a. m., allowed himself to be surprised and his force routed and scattered, without any resistance, and the enemy to occupy the main road to Liberty. I moved everything back; saved all my stores; but the officer commanding the camp at Williams' Bridge, on the Gravel Springs road, allowed 500 of the enemy to pass within two miles of him, sending no warning, and on the evening of the [same] day that column dashed into town, but no stores. I escaped, at great risk amid a storm of fire, on foot, walked twenty-four miles, at night, to pass around the enemy to my forces and did all I could, but before I could gather them together the enemy had done his work and we could only pursue.

I do not know that there was actual treason and treachery, but when I tell Your Excellency that I have had to institute proceedings against officers as high as colonels for taking bribes to pass cotton at the very points I had placed them to guard, you will perhaps agree with me that it was not all accidental.

I have applied for a court of inquiry, and I hope it will be granted. In the meantime, of course, all whose speculations I have interfered with are clamoring against me and Your Excellency, and while these clamors do not affect me a moment, yet i am conscious that, with the pestilential efforts constantly made to annoy Your Excellency, they may cause you additional. I earnestly hope that while I am willing to stay here cheerfully as long as you are satisfied yet if it will remove any annoyance I hope you will not hesitate to recall me. I should like to have a court of inquiry, but as my colonel has written to me his statement that my disposition of the forces was wise, and i am so conscious that I can satisfy your mind I have done all man could do, that will cheerfully submit to any change you may deem best. General gardner is removing these troops and promises to give me others, and I believe I can eventually bring matters to a satisfactory conclusion; yet I an so sensibly conscious of your almost paternal kindness that I wish no prospects of my own to add to your annoyances. I will send a detailed report as soon as I can. Major Bowen, who bears this letter, is the commissioner for settlement of claims and can give you much information in regard to the district. Hugh Davis, my aide, was captured after being separated from me.

The family are well, but as I have been with force to Jackson to aid in repelling a raid there, I have not seen them for some time.

With sentiments of profound respect, your grateful friend and obedient servant,

GEO. B. HODGE,

Brigadier-General.

His Excellency President DAVIS,

Richmond, Va.

SUMMIT, MISS., December 14, 1864.

Mr. PRESIDENT: I send by Major Cary copies of all the orders issued, showing disposition of the troops in my district prior to the last raid and the opinions of my officers as to its wisdom. Colonel Ogden allowed his camp to be surprised and his men scattered, and the enemy overran


Page 9 Chapter LVII. EXPEDITION TO BROOKHAVEN, MISS.

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