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Collierville in Shelby County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

Chalmers's Collierville Raid

“... break the railroad behind him.”

 
 
Chalmers's Collierville Raid Marker image. Click for full size.
By Lee Hattabaugh, October 21, 2010
1. Chalmers's Collierville Raid Marker
Inscription. Early in November 1863, Union Gen. William T. Sherman was moving east to relieve the Union army at Chattanooga. Confederate Gen. Joseph E. Johnston ordered Gen. James R. Chalmers to "harass [Sherman's] rear and break the railroad behind him." Chalmers decided to make a demonstration either at Collierville or Germantown, five miles west of here, to distract Federal cavalry and allow Col. Robert V. Richardson's brigade to destroy track between La Grange and Corinth.

When Chalmers's scouts reported that only one Union regiment defended the Memphis and Charleston Railroad at Collierville, he decided to attack the garrison and approached from the south on November 3. The garrison, however, was larger and better armed than the scouts reported. Union Col. Edward Hatch's cavalry brigade posted at Collierville and Germantown was supported by artillery. At least one unit - the 2nd Iowa Cavalry - was armed with Colt revolving rifles, giving it superior firepower.

When Hatch learned of the Confederate advance, he telegraphed Collierville's defenders and then rode quickly from Germantown with reinforcements. He struck the Confederates on the flanks shortly after Chalmers began his attack. When Chalmers counterattacked on one flank, the 2nd Iowa Cavalry used its revolving rifles with deadly effect. Chalmers then ordered a retreat, and
Chalmers's Collierville Raid Marker image. Click for full size.
By Lee Hattabaugh, October 21, 2010
2. Chalmers's Collierville Raid Marker
Looking north along Walnut Street.
Hatch pursued the Confederates eight miles to the Coldwater River in Mississippi. The Memphis and Charleston Railroad remained open to Tuscumbia, Alabama, for Union troop movements.

"Mounted and dismounted men of the enemy came forward in fine style, the howitzers of the Second Iowa Cavalry firing rapidly. The regiment, lying on the ground, waited until the enemy's cavalry were within 50 yards, sprang to their feet, and, with cheers, poured in a severe fire from revolving rifles. ... The repulse was thorough." - Col. Edward Hatch
 
Erected by Tennessee Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Tennessee Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 35° 2.619′ N, 89° 40.004′ W. Marker is in Collierville, Tennessee, in Shelby County. Marker is on Walnut Street south of West Poplar Avenue (Tennessee Highway 57), on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Located adjacent to Collierville's Tom Brooks Park. Marker is in this post office area: Collierville TN 38017, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Battle of Collierville (here, next to this marker); First Baptist Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Tom Brooks Park
Chalmers's Collierville Raid Marker image. Click for full size.
By Lee Hattabaugh, October 21, 2010
3. Chalmers's Collierville Raid Marker
on the right in this view.
(within shouting distance of this marker); Saint Andrew's Episcopal Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Presbyterian Church of Collierville (within shouting distance of this marker); Collierville High School (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Collierville United Methodist Church (about 600 feet away); Collierville, Tenn. (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Collierville.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. To better understand the relationship, study each marker in the order shown.
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 26, 2010, by Lee Hattabaugh of Capshaw, Alabama. This page has been viewed 927 times since then and 45 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on October 26, 2010, by Lee Hattabaugh of Capshaw, Alabama. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
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