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

Civil War on Yellow Creek

A Guerrilla Sanctuary

 
 
Civil War on Yellow Creek Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, June 14, 2020
1. Civil War on Yellow Creek Marker
Inscription.  During the Civil War, Yellow Creek's rough terrain and the widespread Confederate sentiment of its inhabitants provided a safe refuge for guerrillas operating in Dickson County and the surrounding area. Regular Confederate cavalry also came through the Yellow Creek valley, including Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest's command on the retreat from Fort Donelson in February 1862, and again a year later when he and Gen. Joseph Wheeler sidestepped an interdicting Federal column after their attack on the fort failed. Mainly agricultural, the area attracted partisan rangers seeking food, shelter, and equipment.

Federal commanders, realizing that Yellow Creek's residents sheltered the guerrillas, exerted considerable efforts to destroy their networks. Both Col. William W. Lowe at Fort Donelson and Col. Sanders D. Bruce at Clarksville sent patrols to break up these mounted bands, but constant Confederate ambushes and attacks kept the Union forces on edge. As the guerrilla warfare became more intense, both sides resorted to increased threats, violence, and brutality.

One such incident occurred late in 1863. Lt. Henry W. Barr's squadron,
Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest image. Click for full size.
Library of Congress
2. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest
Click or scan to see
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3rd Tennessee Cavalry (US), burned the house and farm buildings of a local resident, J. J. Pickett, in retaliation for the shooting of one of their men. Shortly after the war ended, his widow, Jane Pickett, filed an affidavit for the loss of some of her property in Dickson County Quarterly Court.

While Federal attempts to break the guerrilla networks were unsuccessful, they eventually pacified the region. By October 1864, Union forces firmly controlled the areas surrounding Yellow Creek and isolated the guerrilla activity there until the end of the war.

“Today we were fired upon, wounding Lieutenant Beatty, 5th Iowa Cavalry, and 1 man severely. Chased them for several miles, but did not catch them. In both cases the rebels were in ambush. Have given orders to take no more prisoners.”
— Col. William W. Lowe, 5th Iowa Cavalry
 
Erected by Tennessee Civil War Trails.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Tennessee Civil War Trails series list.
 
Location. 36° 8.527′ N, 87° 30.169′ W. Marker is near Dickson, Tennessee, in Dickson County. Marker is on Yellow Creek Road (Tennessee Route 46) south of Old Number 1 Road
Gen. Joseph Wheeler image. Click for full size.
Library of Congress, June 15, 2020
3. Gen. Joseph Wheeler
, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2199 Yellow Creek Rd, Dickson TN 37055, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Irish Shanty (approx. 3˝ miles away); Camp Gillem (approx. 3˝ miles away); Yellow Bank Trestle (approx. 7.7 miles away); First National Bank (approx. 7.8 miles away); World War I 1917-1919 (approx. 7.9 miles away); Dickson, Tennessee,100 Years 1899-1999 (approx. 7.9 miles away); World War II 1940-1946 (approx. 7.9 miles away); 1950 Korean Conflict 1955/1964 Vietnam Era 1975 (approx. 7.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Dickson.
 
Civil War on Yellow Creek Marker inset image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, June 14, 2020
4. Civil War on Yellow Creek Marker inset
Civil War on Yellow Creek Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, June 14, 2020
5. Civil War on Yellow Creek Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2020. It was originally submitted on June 15, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 168 times since then and 38 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on June 15, 2020, by Duane Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 17, 2021