Following in the 31st Indiana's Footsteps
(Page 4, Murfreesboro)

Stones River (Murfreesboro):

Stones River National Military Park has unfortunately been run over by the city of Murfreesboro. The park system is trying to acquire more land and the highway system may be controlled to protect what is left. Unfortunately many of the States have not seen fit to place markers or monuments or help acquire land at this site and therefore little in this manner exists. Stones River does offer some beautiful spots and is unique in many respects. The site where the 31st Indiana fought at Stones River is within the Park.

There are very few National Park marker tablets at Murfreesboro, none mention the 31st Indiana. However, there are two Tennessee State Historical Markers (3A 160 & 3A 161) that take note of two Confederate Brigades that are of interest concerning the history of the 31st Indiana and one does mention Cruft's Brigade. These two Confederate Brigades, Chalmers' and Donelson's, directly attacked Cruft's Brigade and in the case of Chalmers, was severely beaten by Cruft's Brigade. In fact the area in front of the where the 31st Indiana fought was known as the "Mississippi Half-Acre" due the the heavy losses of Chalmers' Mississippi Regiments which was inflicted upon them by Cruft's Brigade. Therefore the below Markers are also about Cruft's Brigade which was the 31st Indiana, 1st Kentucky, 2nd Kentucky, the "Green" 90th Ohio and Captain Standart's Artillery Battery, even though the markers are not specifically there to honor Cruft. The "murderous crossfire" mentioned in the marker was provided by the 31st Indiana, the 2nd Kentucky and Captain Standart's Artillery Battery.

The below Historical Markers are located inside the ramp on the east side of the Thompson Lane bridge over the Old Nashville Hwy (Nashville Pike) and are alongside the Old Nashville Hwy.

3A 160
CHALMERS' BRIGADE
AT MURFREESBORO

GENERAL JAMES R. CHALMERS MISSISSIPPI BRIGADE (CSA) ADVANCED ACROSS THESE FIELDS AT 10 A.M. ON DECEMBER 31, 1862 TO ATTACK TEH UNION CENTER AT THE ROUND FOREST. THEIR ADVANCE WAS PART OF GENERAL BRAXTON BRAGG'S PLAN TO CRUSH THE UNION RIGHT FLANK EARLY IN THE MORNING AND THEN TURN ON THE CENTER. AFTER HOLDING FOR 48 HOURS, CHALMERS' MEN LEFT MUDDY RIFLE PITS ON A HILL 200 YARDS SOUTHEAST, AND ADVANCED PAST THE COWAN HOUSE RUINS, 100 YARDS TO THE SOUTHEAST.

(continued on other side)

 

3A 160

CHALMERS' BRIGADE
AT MURFREESBORO
(continued from other side)
THE COWAN HOUSE, WHICH BURNED BEFORE THE BATTLE, OBSTRUCTED THEIR ADVANCE AND FORCED THE BRIGADE TO BREAK AND RE-FORM IN THE AREA UNDER A MURDEROUS CROSSFIRE OF UNION ARTILLERY AND INFANTRY FIRE FROM THE ROUND FOREST, 200 YARDS TO THE NORTHWEST. AFTER CHALMERS WAS KNOCKED SENSELESS BY AND EXPLODING SHELL, THE UNIT RETREATED. LATER IN THE AFTERNOON IT RE-FORMED UNDER COLONEL T. W. WHITE OF THE NINTH MISSISSIPPI REGIMENT.

 

3A 161
DONELSON'S BRIGADE
AT MURFREESBORO

GENERAL DANIEL P. DONELSON'S TENNESSEE BRIGADE (CSA) ADVANCED ACROSS THESE FIELDS ON DECEMBER 31, 1862, AROUND 11 A.M. IN SUPPORT OF CHALMERS' BRIGADE. DONELSON' LINES WERE BROKEN BY CHALMERS' RETREAT AND BY THE COWAN RUINS. THE BRIGADE SPLIT IN TWO, WITH PART ADVANCING WEST INTO THE CEDAR WOODS, WHERE COLONEL WILLIAM MOORE OF THE 8TH TENNESSEE WAS KILLED. THEY PUSHED BACK GENERAL CHARLES CRUFT'S BRIGADE (USA) AND CAPTURED OVER 1000 PRISONERS AND SEVEN CANNONS.

(continued on other side)

 

3A 161
DONELSON'S BRIGADE
AT MURFREESBORO
(continued from other side)

THE OTHER PART OF THE BRIGADE ADVANCED TOWARD THE ROUND FOREST WHICH WAS DEFENDED BY COLONEL WILLIAM B. HAZEN'S BRIGADE (USA). THERE THE CONFEDERATES UNDER THE COMMAND OF COLONEL JOHN H. SAVAGE OF THE 16TH TENNESSEE WERE HALTED IN A FIELD OF CORN STALKS, WHERE THEY HELD UNTIL RELIEVED AT 1 P.M. BY ADDITIONAL ATTACKS ORDERED BY GENERAL BRAXTON BRAGG. AT DAYS END, BRAGG HAD THROWN FOUR UNSUCCESSFUL ATTACKS AGAINST THE ROUND FOREST POSITION.

 

This site was written by:
Dennis Hutchinson


I am interested in anything connected with the 31st Indiana Vol. Infantry, or if you have any questions please feel free to contact me by E-Mail.

I am especially interested in photos of soldiers from the 31st Indiana in their wartime clothing.  I am also interested in any letters, diaries, or biographical information on 31st Indiana soldiers

Contact: 31st Indiana

Copyright 1998 - 2017 by Dennis Hutchinson. All Rights Reserved. This site may be freely linked to, but not duplicated in any fashion except by the author's consent. When permission is given, this copyright statement must remain with the document.

Last Update May, 2017

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