Parkers Crossroads in Henderson County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
Dunham Strikes Back
A Desperate Charge
Colonel Cyrus Dunham's miscalculation of General Nathan Bedford Forrest's intentions cost his soldiers dearly. Not only was Forrest not retreating, but the accurate fire of his dismounted cavalry and artillery was taking a heavy toll on the Union forces.
Dunham's only hope of holding the ground was to silence the Confederate cannon. His artillery was out of action—he would get no further assistance from them. It was up to the infantry. Determined to change the course of the battle, Dunham decided to attack the east end of the Confederate line. He ordered the 122nd Illinois and 50th Indiana forward.
The First Attack Fails
The two regiments rose as one and ran toward the Confederate guns. Forrest's artillery kept up a heavy fire as the Union soldiers charged across the stubble in the old cotton field. Shot and shell furrowed the ground and mowed down men. Officers ordered them down, trying to avoid the deadly missiles. Quickly, they jumped to their feet and ran forward again, hoping to reach the guns before the Confederates reloaded. The distance was too great and again a storm
Dunham Falls Back
Colonel Dunham, riding back and forth across the line, encouraged the men. One more push, he told them, and the day is ours. Again, he ordered the Midwesterners across the cotton field. Once more they moved forward in "gallant style."
The relentless barrage of the artillery again tore into the 122nd Illinois and 50th Indiana. It proved to be more than any man could stand. The final desperate assault on the Confederate battery failed.
Lt. Col. James A. Drish, 122nd Illinois Infantry
Erected 2015 by Parker's Crossroads Battlefield Association.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. A significant historical date for this entry is December 31, 1862.
Location. 35° 47.488′ N, 88° 23.105′ W. Marker is in Parkers Crossroads, Tennessee, in Henderson County. Marker can be reached from Wildersville Road, 0.2 miles east of Tennessee Route 22, on the right when traveling east. Marker is located along the North Battlefield Trail Extension, south of Wildersville Road. The North Battlefield Trail begins at the Parker's Crossroads City Park: Auto Tour Stop No. 1 of the Parker's Crossroads Battlefield Auto Tour. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Wildersville TN 38388, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Dibrell's Position (within shouting distance of this marker); Forrest Seizes the Advantage (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); A Fire Terrible In Its Intensity (approx. 0.2 miles away); Forrest's Artillery Leads the Attack (approx. 0.2 miles away); A Panicked Stampede (approx. 0.2 miles away); Napier's Assault on the 39th Iowa (approx. 0.2 miles away); Forrest's Big Show (approx. 0.2 miles away); Manning the Guns (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Parkers Crossroads.
Also see . . . Parker's Crossroads Battlefield Association. (Submitted on June 3, 2021.)
Credits. This page was last revised on July 24, 2021. It was originally submitted on May 29, 2021, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 71 times since then and 9 times this year. Photos: 1. submitted on May 29, 2021, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. 2. submitted on July 24, 2021, by Darren Jefferson Clay of Duluth, Georgia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.