“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Franklin in Williamson County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)

Epicenter of the Battle of Franklin

The Carter House


—Hood's Campaign —

The Carter House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, December 27, 2012
1. The Carter House Marker
(Preface): In September 1864, after Union Gen. William T. Sherman defeated Confederate Gen. John Bell Hood at Atlanta, Hood led the Army of Tennessee northeast against Sherman's supply lines. Rather than contest Sherman's "March to the Sea," Hood moved north into Tennessee. Gen. John M. Schofield, detached from Sherman's army, delayed Hood at Columbia and Spring Hill before falling back to Franklin. The bloobath here on November 30 crippled the Confederates, but they followed Schofield to the outskirts of Nashville and Union Gen. George H. Thomas's strong defenses. Hood's campaign ended when Thomas crushed his army December 15-16.

Cotton planter Fountain Branch Carter built this dwelling in 1830. On November 30, 1864, after more than three decades as a peaceful farmhouse, it was at the epicenter of the Battle of Franklin, in the heart of the Union line. Union Gen. Jacob D. Cox had his headquarters here. During the battle, Carter, his family, and two neighboring families took refuge in the basement, where they all survived. A few Federal soldiers, frantic to escape the carnage outside, joined them. Union reinforcements pushed their way through their fleeing comrades and slammed into the Confederates charging this way. Here, just inside the breastworks in front of you, the Federals repulsed as many as
The Carter House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, December 27, 2012
2. The Carter House Marker
seventeen Confederates assaults. The fighting here was so vicious that the blood of dead and wounded soldiers pooled in Carter's garden and flowed along the adjacent Columbia Turnpike.

Carter's son, Confederate Capt. Tod Carter, was shot down near here. He was serving on Gen. Thomas B. Smith's staff when Smith's brigade assaulted this position from in front of you. One hundred and eighty yards southwest of the Carter House, Carter was shot nine times, including once in the forehead. He was found the next morning barely alive. Carried to his home after an absence of more than three years, he died two days later. One of his sisters tending him as he died sobbed, "Brother's come home at last."

(Sidebar): Four Medals of Honor were later awarded for courage in the action here. Gen. David S. Stanley led a brigade into the thick of the fight at a crucial moment and was shot in the neck but recovered. Corp. James K. Merrifield, 88th Illinois Infantry captured two Confederate battle flags out of the line. Sgt. Alfred Ramsbottom, 97th Ohio Infantry captured the 2nd Mississippi Infantry flag in hand-to-hand combat with its bearer. Sgt. Thomas Toohey, 24th Wisconsin Infantry, worked a battery's gun almost single-handedly under hotter fire than anywhere else in the line.

"We were so badly mixed up with old soldiers going forward, new soldiers going
Gen. David S. Stanley image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, December 27, 2012
3. Gen. David S. Stanley
courtesy Library of Congress
back, and Rebs running both ways... I could not tell... which were prisoners, the Rebs or ourselves- each ordering the other to surrender, and many on each side clubbing their guns and chasing each other around the [Carter] houses."
- Union Soldier
Erected by Tennessee Civil War Trails.
Location. 35° 55.064′ N, 86° 52.391′ W. Marker is in Franklin, Tennessee, in Williamson County. Marker is on Columbia Avenue (U.S. 31). Click for map. This marker is next to Opdycke's Bridgade and across the street from Lotz House. Marker is in this post office area: Franklin TN 37064, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Lotz House (within shouting distance of this marker); a different marker also named Lotz House (within shouting distance of this marker); Opdycke's Bridgade (within shouting distance of this marker); Carter House (within shouting distance of this marker); Carter's Cotton Gin (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Cotton Gin Assault (approx. 0.2 miles away); Carter Gin House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Natchez Street Community (approx. ¼ mile away). Click for a list of all markers in Franklin.
Categories. War, US Civil
Capt. Todd Carter image. Click for full size.
By Sandra Hughes, December 27, 2012
4. Capt. Todd Carter
Courtesy Library of Congress
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. This page has been viewed 382 times since then and 88 times this year. Last updated on , by J. Makali Bruton of San Salvador, El Salvador. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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