Perryville in Boyle County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)
Sgt. Harris B. Cope Memorial
Sgt. Harris B. Cope
16th Tennessee Infantry
who fell in the fields ahead
October 8, 1862
The brigade of Brig. Gen. Daniel S. Donelson (nephew of President Andrew Jackson) consisted of the 8th, 15th, 16th, 38th, and 51st Tennessee Infantry regiments, and Capt. William Carnesí Tennessee Light Artillery Battery, and was the first of the four brigades of Maj. Gen. Benjamin F. Cheathamís First Division, Maj. Gen. Leonidas Polkís Right Wing, Gen. Braxton Braggís Army of the Mississippi.
In the late morning Donelsonís brigade (with Cheathamís Division), leaving its bivouac site in and around the Perryville Cemetery, marched in the direction of Harrodsburg to take up a position on the right of the Confederate line. The brigade filed off of the turnpike near the Crawford House and followed the dry Chaplin River to get into position.
After arriving at the staging area near the Goodknight House along the river bottomlands behind you, Carnesí Battery and the 8th & 51st Tennessee Infantry regiments were detached to assist an artillery bombardment several hundred yards to the left and, later, to assist
It was determined that Donelsonís Brigade would lead the main attack directly over the fields ahead. The attack was to be made without the detached regiments in spite of Donelsonís personal appeals for their return. The attack of Donelsonís three remaining units, the 15th, 16th and 38th Tennessee Infantry regiments was launched a few minutes after 2:00 P.M. against what was believed to be the Union left flank. Led by the 16th Tennessee Infantry regiment, the three regiments ran into a murderous cross fire from Parsonsí improvised United States Battery on the high ground ahead and to the right and Harrisí 19th Indiana Battery on the high ground to the left and front. The 16th Tennessee lost half of its men in just a few minutes. Despite the tremendous losses, the three regiments continued the attack with shouts of victory. They first struck the 33rd Ohio Infantry regiment and then the 2nd Ohio Infantry regiment directly ahead, inflicted heavy losses on the Ohioans and captured the Lieutenant Colonel of the 33rd regiment. Donelson's three regiments, in the end, bought enough time for the two other of Cheathamís brigades to adjust their lines and effectively assault the Union positions. The 15th, 16th and 38th Tennessee Infantry regiments surged ahead until they were halted by artillery fire and superior
Later in the afternoon the 8th and 51st Tennessee Infantry regiments returned to this area and spearheaded another attack, along with the regiments of the 15th, 16th, and 38th Tennessee Infantry regiments, in the fields directly ahead. Darkness, though, finally ended the fighting.
8th Tennessee Infantry: Killed 4, Wounded 28, Total 33 -- 15th Tennessee Infantry: Killed 9, Wounded 25, Total 34 -- 16th Tennessee Infantry: Killed 41, Wounded 151, Missing 7, Total 199 -- 38th Tennessee Infantry: Killed 5, Wounded 38, Total 43 -- 51st Tennessee Infantry: Killed 9, Wounded 25, Total 34 -- and Carnesí Tennessee Battery: Killed 1, Wounded 4, Total 5.
Polkís Right Wing
Army of the Mississippi
Location. 37° 40.495′ N, 84° 58.043′ W. Marker is in Perryville, Kentucky, in Boyle County. Marker can be reached from Park Road near Battlefield Road (Kentucky Route 1920). Touch for map. Located in Perryville Battlefield State Historic Site. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1825 Battlefield Road, Perryville KY 40468, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. Donelson's Attack (within shouting distance of this marker); Introduction (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Donelson's Advance (about 800 feet away); Stewart's Advance (approx. 0.2 miles away); Soldiers' Reaction to Lincoln's Emancipation (approx. 0.2 miles away); Perryvile and the Emancipation Proclamation (approx. 0.2 miles away); Army of the Ohio (approx. 0.2 miles away); Squire Henry P. Bottom (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Perryville.
Also see . . .
1. Perryville Battlefield State Historic Site. Kentucky Department of Parks (Submitted on August 23, 2011.)
2. Perryville. Civil War Trust (Submitted on August 23, 2011.)
3. Perryville. CWSAC Battle Summary (Submitted on August 23, 2011.)
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 23, 2011, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 591 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on August 23, 2011, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.