“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Parker's Crossroads in Henderson County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)

Forrest's Artillery

Forrest's Artillery Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, October 8, 2010
1. Forrest's Artillery Marker
Forrest's Brilliant and Unconventional Use of Artillery is one of the hallmarks of the Battle of Parker's Crossroads. He placed his artillery in front of his troops, rather than behind them, and used a continuous barrage of fire from his guns to force the Federals into a position of his choosing.

When the Union line withdrew to the split-rail fence, Forrest ordered his artillery to press forward. Those manning the guns pushed and pulled their pieces over the muddy terrain, paused to fire, and on Forrest's orders advanced again, drawing ever closer to Union troops in the woods behind the fence.

When the advance halted, Confederate artillery was positioned west, north, and east of the Union line at a distance of less than 200 yards. Three attempts by the Federals to charge the guns were repulsed. Lieut. Amariah L. Huggins, who stood next to Sergeant Nat Baxter's gun, a 12-pounder howitzer, remembered, "The enemy was so close to us that Dibrell's men were compelled to fire lying down. At this crisis (Sergeant) Baxter did the loading of our gun battery himself, lying upon his back and ramming the charge home." Huggins protecting the artillerist, fired his Navy Colt repeatedly into the Union troops as they advanced.

The artillery having successfully contained the Union line, Forrest pushed
Sergeant Nat Baxter image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, October 8, 2010
2. Sergeant Nat Baxter
his battle line into small arms range and began to execute the flanking maneuver that would split the Union force in two and ultimately bring them to the brink of surrender.

Confederate Artillery Position

Confederate artillery, probably part of Captain Samuel Freeman's battery, occupied a position 500 feet east of the Union line, which extended along the fence to the tree line in front of you. Friction primers, which ignited the cannon's powder charge and caused it to fire, were found by archaeologists on a low rise about 600 feet east of here, confirming that Confederate artillery were present. The mown trail leads to that actual artillery position.
Location. 35° 47.299′ N, 88° 23.123′ W. Marker is in Parker's Crossroads, Tennessee, in Henderson County. Marker can be reached from Federal Lane 0.2 miles east of Tennessee Route 22, on the right when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 20945 TN-22, Wildersville TN 38388, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Union Cemetery (within shouting distance of this marker); Enfilading the Line (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Three Desperate Charges (approx. 0.2
Forrest's Artillery Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, October 8, 2010
3. Forrest's Artillery Marker
miles away); Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Lexington-Huntingdon Road (approx. 0.2 miles away); Battle of Parker's Crossroads (approx. 0.2 miles away); A Very Successful Campaign (approx. 0.2 miles away); McPeake Cabin (approx. mile away).
Also see . . .  Parker's Crossroads Battlefield. (Submitted on August 22, 2015.)
Categories. War, US Civil
Artillery Position image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, October 8, 2010
4. Artillery Position
Trail (yellow arrow & lines) leading to the artillery position on the low rise, where the friction primers were found by archaeologists.
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 178 times since then and 7 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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