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Parkers Crossroads in Henderson County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence

 
 
Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 24, 2012
1. Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker
Inscription.
Two Futile Charges

The Union line, positioned about one-quarter mile north of here, made two futile charges against the Confederate guns. Forrest then ordered a general advance and his line, utilizing a frightful barrage of artillery and small arms fire, began to tighten the arc around the Union position.

Withdrawal to the Fence

The pressure of the combined firepower forced the Union troops to withdraw from the high ground. They fell back to this position, taking cover behind a split-rail fence much like that before you.

"Right at half past 11 we were brought under a terrific fire of shell, grape and canister. We lay behind a fence at the edge of a strip of timber, while across in front of us some 500 yards were planted the enemy's cannon they were planted on a ridge within full view and had we not lain down while we were there many more must have been killed." — Private William H. Peter, 122nd Illinois

Shells Shattered the Brittle Rails

The split-rail fence provided no protection. Shells shattered the brittle rails, turning them into instruments of death. Private Joseph Hotz, 50th Indiana, later wrote his wife, " many a poor soldier lost his life and many lost arms and legs. It was a fearful
Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, October 8, 2010
2. Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker
sight."


Dunham realized that the Confederate artillery must be silenced if his men were to survive, let alone emerge victorious.
 
Erected by Parker's Crossroads Battlefield Association.
 
Location. 35° 47.303′ N, 88° 23.327′ W. Marker is in Parkers Crossroads, Tennessee, in Henderson County. Marker can be reached from Federal Lane 0.2 miles east of Tennessee Route 22, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. The marker is along the South Loop Walking Trail beside the split-rail fence, at Stop 7 of the Parker's Crossroads Driving Tour. Marker is in this post office area: Wildersville TN 38388, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Three Desperate Charges (within shouting distance of this marker); Battle of Parker's Crossroads (within shouting distance of this marker); A Very Successful Campaign (within shouting distance of this marker); McPeake Cabin (within shouting distance of this marker); Lt. Col. Alonzo Napier (within shouting distance of this marker); Nathan Bedford Forrest (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Lexington-Huntingdon Road (about 300 feet away); Battlefield Overview (about 300 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Parkers Crossroads.
 
Regarding Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence.
Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 24, 2012
3. Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker
This is the first of several markers beside the split-rail fence.
On the right side a drawing shows Union soldiers beside the fence defending this position from artillery in the middle distance. The drawing is captioned: " their position at the fence corners proved to the enemy, instead of a protection, a source of great loss, as our shot and shell scattered them to the winds, and many were killed by rails that were untouched by balls." – General Nathan Bedford Forrest, in a report to General Braxton Bragg.
 
Additional keywords. Parkers Crossroads
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, October 8, 2010
4. Withdrawal to the Split-Rail Fence Marker
The Split-Rail Fence image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 24, 2012
5. The Split-Rail Fence
The Union side at the split-rail fence looking toward approaching Confederate artillery. One Parrot rifle is visible in the field at left aimed north at the approaching Confederates and Interstate 40.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 7, 2014, by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia. This page has been viewed 236 times since then and 40 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on September 7, 2014, by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia.   2. submitted on August 22, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee.   3. submitted on September 7, 2014, by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia.   4. submitted on August 22, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee.   5. submitted on September 7, 2014, by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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