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Decatur in Morgan County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

“An Affair Most Important to Us” - The Federal Right, October 27-28, 1864

“A Hard Nut To Crack”

 

—The Battle For Decatur —

 
“An Affair Most Important to Us” Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, February 20, 2010
1. “An Affair Most Important to Us” Marker
Inscription. As Hood’s Army of Tennessee encircled Decatur, sharpshooters advanced upon the Union defenses. Colonel Doolittle’s men responded with heavy artillery and musket fire. During the early afternoon of October 27, the Confederates approached the Federal breastworks (to your front). At 2:00 p.m. Lieutenant Alexander Wilson of the 73rd Indiana Infantry organized 50 men from his regiment to attack these skirmishers. Wilson encountered “stubborn resistance,” but by nightfall the Federal forward line remained “very nearly on its old ground.” A dense fog crept over Decatur that night, and a force of Hood’s skirmishers advanced from the woods to your front, digging in near to the Union lines. When the mist burned off, the Union commanders found “It was absolutely necessary to dislodge the enemy from this position, as they covered every gun in our principal fort [Fort No. 1] and would soon render it impossible to work them…” according to General Granger.

Captain W. C. Moore of the 18th Michigan Infantry formed a force from his regiment, and soldiers from the 102nd Ohio Infantry, 13th Wisconsin Infantry, 68th Indiana Infantry, and 73rd Indiana. Moore launched his assault at 11:00 a.m. The Confederates were, in part, from Govan’s Brigade of Cleburne’s Division, Cheatham’s Corps. Captain Mumford Dixon, 3rd
Tour Stop 4 image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, February 20, 2010
2. Tour Stop 4
Confederate Infantry: “In position on the west of Decatur…Sent out 9 men as skirmishers last night. The enemy made a sortie out of their works, and captured 4 of my men and about 40 more from the Brigade.” Granger noted: “[Captain Moore] returned to the fort, having cleared this line of the enemy’s works, captured 120 men, including 5 commissioned officers; killed or wounded a very large number, with only a loss of 3 men, slightly wounded. This affair, though of short duration, was in its result most important to us.”
 
Erected by City of Decatur. (Marker Number 4.)
 
Location. 34° 36.822′ N, 86° 59.137′ W. Marker is in Decatur, Alabama, in Morgan County. Marker is at the intersection of Lafayette Street Northwest and Railroad Street, on the right when traveling west on Lafayette Street Northwest. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Decatur AL 35602, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Old Decatur Historic District/Historic Depot (within shouting distance of this marker); Dancy-Polk House (circa 1829) (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); “A Hard Nut To Crack” - Federal Defenses at Decatur
Map of Battle at Walking Tour Stop 4 image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, February 20, 2010
3. Map of Battle at Walking Tour Stop 4
(about 500 feet away); Historic Downtown/Founders Park (about 500 feet away); Old Decatur Historic District/Old State Bank (about 500 feet away); Rising Sun Lodge No. 29 (about 600 feet away); Old State Bank Building (about 600 feet away); Battle of Decatur (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Decatur.
 
Categories. Forts, CastlesWar, US Civil
 
Close up of the Sketch from the Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, February 20, 2010
4. Close up of the Sketch from the Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 6, 2010, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. This page has been viewed 1,157 times since then and 53 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on March 6, 2010, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
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