“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Nancy in Wayne County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)

Winter Quarters

Winter Quarters Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 26, 2012
1. Winter Quarters Marker
Inscription. By late December, General Felix Zollicoffer had decided to winter his command at Beech Grove. "The time has come," he wrote, "when huts must be constructed to protect the forces of the Brigade against inclement weather. Commanding officer of regiments, battalions, or separate corps ... will advise with Captain Sheliha, Engineer officer, as to the cheapest and most readily constructed style of hut which is sufficient to protect against bad weather and will at once employ all the available force and implements that can be spared from the general defense in constructing their winter quarters.""

In front of you, marked by a low depression, stood one of the cabins that General Zollicoffer ordered to be built. Between 800 and 1000 cabins stood at Beech Grove, spread out along the ridge and around and behind the fortifications. Each housed four men. Well built and dug about three feet into the ground, they were made of logs with the crevices chinked and with stick chimneys plastered with clay. Some had glass windows and wood floors. Many were quite large.

Private William H. Isom, Company B, 17th Tennessee, wrote: "The 17th built log cabins for winter quarters ... and was living fat." Not only did the Confederates have comfortable quarters; they also had a good supply of food. Sugar, coffee, tea, eggs, butter,
Winter Quarters Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 26, 2012
2. Winter Quarters Marker
A depression in front of the marker marks the former site of one of the log huts. The white stakes indicate where artifacts were unearthed.
cabbages, chickens and pigs were plentiful. Colonel David Cummings, 19th Tennessee, wrote his wife, "We are well fixed in our mess for a while."

After the battle during the night of January 19, Confederate troops hurriedly abandoned Beech Grove. When Union troops arrived the next day. they found that the Confederates had left almost everything behind, including commissary stores, camp and garrison equipment, household goods and personal goods; "all of the comforts that accumulate about a soldier during a month in camp were here in profusion" wrote Captain Judson Bishop, 2nd Minnesota. A quantity of clothing — "boots, pants, coats and drawers" — was found on the river bank where hundreds of wagons filled with baggage waited to cross. On the far bank, a number of fleeing Rebel soldiers was visible.

The 19th Kentucky Infantry Regiment was detailed to destroy the Beech Grove encampment and the earthworks surrounding it. They spent a full month leveling the earthworks and burning the cabins.
Erected by Mill Springs Battlefield Association.
Location. 36° 57.224′ N, 84° 47.112′ W. Marker is near Nancy, Kentucky, in Wayne County. Marker can be reached from Mill Springs Battlefield Road 3 miles south of Kentucky Route 235, on
Winter Quarters Marker Detail image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 26, 2012
3. Winter Quarters Marker Detail
Artifacts found at this location: A: knapsack buckles and hooks; B: bayonet tip; C: dropped bullets; D: scissor handle; E: spoon handle; F: grape shot; G: parrott shell fragment; H: lock face and handles from a soldier's clothing trunk.
the right when traveling south. Click for map. Marker is on a marked trail at Tour Stop 7: Beech Grove Confederate Camp. The trail passes around a thinly wooded area, formerly the site of the large Confederate camp. Marker is in this post office area: Nancy KY 42544, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Fortifications at Beech Grove (within shouting distance of this marker); Zollie's Den (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Moulden's Hill (approx. 0.6 miles away); Noble Ellis - Sternwheeler that Saved an Army (approx. 0.8 miles away); Mill Springs (approx. 1.5 miles away); Timmy's Branch (approx. 6.2 miles away); "Poor Charlie" (approx. 7 miles away); Confederate Field Hospital (approx. 7 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Nancy.
More about this marker. The marker stands with a group of white painted stakes which indicate the locations of artifacts found during archaeological digs.

The marker contains the following photographs and drawings:

Photo (Left Center): Confederate soldiers from Texas pose in front of their winter quarters in Virginia.

Photo (Center): The white stakes mark artifact locations. Many were domestic artifacts — cooking utensils, musical
Beech Grove Winter Quarters Site image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 26, 2012
4. Beech Grove Winter Quarters Site
The marker is inside the woods in the distance. The trail is along the right side marked by logs.
instruments, buttons and personal items. Handles and locks indicate that the men traveled with steamer trunks. Refer to Photo #3.

Drawing (top right): This drawing of the encampment at Beech Grove appeared in Harper's Magazine after the battle.

We there found an almost complete city. Houses, streets, lanes, stores, stables, everything complete except the inhabitants. Chickens, pigs and turkeys were as numerous as are to be seen about a thrifty farmer's barnyard. Over 50 neat and well built log houses were to be seen with all the conveniences of house-keeping to be found about them — beds and bedding, clothing and furniture, trunks and boxes, provisions and groceries were left untouched. — Cincinnati Daily News correspondent upon entering Beech Grove, January 20, 1862
Categories. War, US Civil
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia. This page has been viewed 242 times since then and 54 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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