July 4, 1863
Federal Field Hospital at the Battle of Tebbs Bend
Chief Surgeon Boliver Barnum and Assistant Surgeon John N. Gregg worked in this field hospital after the battle. Amputation was often the method of treating arm and leg wounds. If available, a chloroform-rag over a patient's face or a drink of whiskey was used to deaden the pain.
Two Michigan soldiers had their arms amputated as a result of this battle. The amputation of the arm of Pvt. George W. Hicks was performed here. Pvt. Arbuth Nott was shot in the arm, captured by the Confederates, had his arm amputated by a Southern surgeon, and was exchanged after the battle. It may have been here that Lizzie Compton was treated and the discovery was made that she was a female soldier fighting for the Union.
Inventory of Personal Effects of Morgan L. Wallace:
1 Blanket · 1 pr Gloves
1 dress coat · 13 Sheets of paper
1 Great coat · 14 envelopes
2 Shirts · 1 Hat Band
1 pencase & holder · 2 Gold pens
1 fine comb · 1 Acct Book
1 pocket Book containing $1.00 1 Knapsack
The above articles were sent to his wife who resided in Leonidas, St. Joseph County, Michigan - National Archives
"Tell my folks...I did not die as a coward."
High on the knoll and to the
left in front of you was the location of the Federal field hospital during the Battle of Tebbs Bend. Here soldiers were carried and treated after they were first wounded.
Three members of the 25th Michigan were killed during the battle, three died before the next morning, and some died in hospitals away from this site.
The bodies of the first six were buried at a site 100 yards to the right of the field hospital. After the war, the U.S. Government gathered as many Federal soldiers from scattered cemeteries throughout the area and reinterred them in the National Cemetery in Lebanon, KY.
25th Michigan Infantry, USA
Soldiers buried in the National Cemetery, Lebanon, KY
Killed in action or mortally wounded
Battle of Tebbs Bend, July 4, 1863
3 Cpl. Roswell Beebe Grave No. 311 *
6 Cpl. Morgan L. Wallace Grave No. 313
Pvt. Southard Perrin **
2 Cpl. Peter G. Cuddeback Grave No. 349, Died July 5
Pvt. Peter VerSchure Grave No. 347
4 Sgt. James L. Slater Grave No. 314
*Beebe was wounded in his abdominal cavity and subsequently hemorrhaged to death, July 5, 1863
**Perrin's body is in a grave, marked as "Unknown" in the Lebanon Cemetery records, Death Date July 4, 1863.
25th Michigan soldiers who died later as a results of the battle.
Pvt. Henry Beebe
Pvt. George W. Hicks - Died at 13th KY Inf Capt. Rod Jeter's Home, 516 Lebanon Avenue, Campbellsville, KY
Tending the Wounded
After the battle, Pvt. Dirk Van Rallte stayed behind to help nurse the wounded. He wrote home August 2, 1863: "Those that were mortally wounded were very quiet and said to the fellows" 'Tell my folks that I have fought and that I did not die as a coward.'"
On August 3, 1863, Van Rallte observed: "The most are injured in the arm and one in the leg. (Peter) Verschur was shot in the lung and stomach. he lived about an hour after he had been shot."
Pvt. John Wilterdink described Pvt. Peter VerSchure's death: Four of us carried him from the battlefield. The first he asked was, "Oh John, give me water." I had a full canteen. Then he said, "Just keep it for yourself." He kept his eyes on me and said, "John, can you pray for me?" My answer was, "Yes, Piet, with my whole heart." "I will die before I reach camp," Peter replied.
Site of 8th Michigan Camp - April-December 1863
After the Confederates burned Green River Bridge on the Christmas Raid January 1, 1863, the 8th Michigan Infantry was ordered here to start rebuilding the bridge. They were aided by some members of the 79th New York. Their camp was located directly in front of you.
By June 1863, both the 8th Michigan and the 79th New York regiments were ordered to move south to Vicksburg, Mississippi. However, about 40 men, some from each regiment, were left behind for the remainder of the year to complete building of the bridge.