8 February 1865: “the enemy have repaired burnt bridge and are crossing”

Item Description: George Anderson Mercer was a lawyer and Confederate officer from Savannah, Ga. He kept an intermittent diary throughout his life. During the War he was captured in Macon, Ga, and returned to service after his release. During this period in the war he served in Mercer and Wright’s Division, and was in South Carolina. Diary entries from this time include troop movements from both armies and tactical decisions made by both sides, as well as the outcomes of several small skirmishes. This entry describes the advantages of his enemy, and the weapons held by both sides.


Item Citation: From Folder 4a, in the George Anderson Mercer Diary, #503, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Item Transcription:

Wed. Feb. 8th

Notified by Genl. Wright that he forces of the enemy near White Hall had retired. 2 1/2 P.M. informed by Genl. Blanchard that the enemy have repaired burnt bridge and are crossing horse-men and foot-man. Enemy’s long range gun’s give them great advantage: our men are armed with smooth bore muskets that are not effective beyond 200 yards, while the rifles of the enemy are effective at 500 to 800 yards. 

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