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

Dunham Takes the Offensive

Dunham Takes the Offensive Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Shane Oliver, April 11, 2021
1. Dunham Takes the Offensive Marker
Inscription.  "The Union forces made a stubborn fight and defended their positions with marked valor, but the Confederate fire was too galling for mortals to stand."
Lieut. John W. Morton, CSA

The change of front was made under a severe fire of small-arms, from which 12 or 20 men of my regiment were wounded."
Col. John L. Rinaker, 122nd Illinois

"The enemy moved past the cross-roads"
Colonel Cyrus Dunham mistakenly thought that General Nathan Bedford Forrest's cavalry had rushed along Rock Springs Road in an effort to escape. The Union colonel ordered his soldiers to "change front."

The line of Union soldiers facing west, parallel to the Lexington-Huntingdon road, swung north. With one end of their line anchored on the road, they aligned east-west on a low ridge parallel to Forrest's dismounted troopers to their north, on what is now Wildersville Road. Dunham didn't realize it, but his action put the Union brigade right where Forrest wanted it.

"A vigorous attack was commenced"
Forrest began his attack as Dunham moved his brigade into position. The Indiana colonel
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had pushed skirmishers forward into Wildersville Road. Forrest's troopers quickly pushed them back and brought up the artillery, which began pounding the Union position.

Confederate fire raked the Union line, particularly its eastern end. Forrest employed his artillery to great effect, but his troops also kept up a constant fire with their small arms. Dunham's line, exposed on the ridge, took a beating from the Confederate weapons.

"The Halt of the Line of Battle" by Edwin Forbes, ca 1863.
Col. John Rinaker, 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° 47.458′ N, 88° 23.331′ W. Marker is in Parkers Crossroads, Tennessee, in Henderson County. Marker can be reached from Wildersville Road, 0.2 miles east of 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.
View of the marker looking towards I-40 and TN-22 image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Shane Oliver, April 11, 2021
2. View of the marker looking towards I-40 and TN-22
Napier's Assault on the 39th Iowa (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Dunham's Artillery is Forced to Withdraw (about 400 feet away); Forrest's Artillery Leads the Attack (about 600 feet away); A Panicked Stampede (about 600 feet away); Battlefield Overview (approx. 0.2 miles away); Battle of Parker's Crossroads (approx. 0.2 miles away); Nathan Bedford Forrest (approx. 0.2 miles away); Civil War Artillery (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 4, 2021.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 4, 2021. It was originally submitted on May 29, 2021, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 113 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on May 29, 2021, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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May. 18, 2024