Saturday, August 6, 2016

Report of General George H. Thomas: Laiboldt attacked, Dec. 28, 1863

Report of General George H. Thomas: Laiboldt attacked, Dec. 28, 1863:

Quick link to Official Records, Series 1, Vol. 31, Pt. 1 (Reports), Report of General George Thomas concerning the attack on Colonel Bernard Laiboldt's wagon train near the camp of Colonel Eli Long, at Charleston, Tennessee, on the morning of December 28, 1863. The wagon train full of supplies was en route to Knoxville, Tennessee, taking a round-about route through the mountains near Cleveland, Tennessee, when Laiboldt stopped to camp. Eli Long's unit (and related units) were camped at several little towns northeast of Cleveland: Charleston-on-the-Hiwassee, Calhoun, Tennessee (where Lieutenant-Colonel Henry A. Potter camped, per his own correspondence), and Columbia, Tennessee, where (I believe) some of the Ohio companies were camped. Long's camp is sometimes reported as Calhoun, and sometimes, as Charleston, which was north of and across the railroad bridge (over the Hiwassee River) from Calhoun. Col. Eli Long's own report shows that his headquarters was at Calhoun. In the official reports, Long was at Calhoun when Laiboldt was attacked on the other side of the bridge at Charleston.

General George Thomas, Report No. 1, December 28, 1863

In previous correspondence Lieutenant-Colonel J.S. Fullerton, Assistant Adjutant General, had written to General Gordon Granger concerning [Laiboldt's] wagon train and its contents. See my post of today: J.S. Fullerton post.

Ref.: Colonel Bernard Laiboldt, Second Missouri, "commanding a demi-brigade in Sheridan's Division."
Citation: Richard A. Baumgartner and Larry Strayer, Echoes of Battle: The Struggle for Chattanooga (Huntington: Blue Acorn Press, 1996), 366.
(Print book, no link).


Fact: Bernard Laiboldt, German-American, born in Grand Duchy of Baden, 1827. Immigrated to U.S.A., 1833. Resided: St. Louis.

Source Citation: 
David A. Powell, The Chickamauga Campaign - Glory or the Grave: The Breakthrough, the Union Collapse, and the Defense of Horseshoe Ridge, September 20, 1863, (Google Preview), (El Dorado Hills: Savas Beatie, 2015), 181.

Map and Links to More about Laiboldt

Charleston and Calhoun, Tennessee - detail, labeled of 'Mountain region of North Carolina and Tennessee' map; A.D. Bache, U.S. Coastal Survey, 1865, Library of Congress Geography & Map Division, Washington, D.C.

The map above shows Charleston, Tennessee, south of and across the Hiwassee River from Calhoun, Tennessee (my labels in blue). Laiboldt was attacked on December 28, 1863, in his temporary camp at Charleston during a trip to deliver army supplies to Knoxville. The red line shows a railroad route, making a triangular area between Cleveland, Chattanooga, and Dalton. The Tennessee River is west of Chattanooga. Walden's Ridge (northwest of Chattanooga) was a difficult mountain route used by the Army of the Cumberland during the seige of Chattanooga. There in the Sequatchie Valley, at Anderson's Crossroads, the Rebels had attacked a wagon train on October 2, 1863, almost three months before this after-Christmas raid on Laiboldt. South of Chattanooga is McLamore Cove, where some of the army camped in September 1863, while crossing Lookout Mountain.

Notice that the map shows a pike running from Charleston, Tennessee, south to Spring Place, Georgia; in my opinion, it is probably greatly simplified, especially just southeast of Charleston, as several areas of it would have to run across some mountains.

Source Citation: A.D. Bache, "Mountain region of North Carolina and Tennessee" (Map, detail of, with labels added), (W.L. Nicholson, A. Lindenkohl, Henry Lindenkohl, and Charles G. Krebs, contributors), United States Coast Survey (A.D. Bache, Supt., 1865), Library of Congress Geography and Map Division Washington, D.C. (Washington: U.S. Coast Survey, 1865).

Related posts, this blog:

Colonel Bernard Laiboldt Report
Colonel Bernard Laiboldt Report - Wheeler's attack on Laiboldt's wagon train, Dec. 28, 1863

Report of J.S. Fullerton (mentions Laiboldt)
Report of J.S. Fullerton, Asst. Adj.-Gen., Army of the Cumberland
He summarizes the contents of Laiboldt's wagon train, December 1863

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