Melee at the Fence

Melee at the Fence (HM2J2Y)

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N 37° 3.397', W 84° 44.353'

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Mill Springs Battlefield

— National Historic Landmark —

Colonel Speed Fry, commanding the 4th Kentucky Infantry (U.S.), pulled his men back to a split-rail fence on a hill east of the road. As the Union soldiers deployed, the Confederates regrouped in the ravine. They had learned that Confederate General Felix K. Zollicoffer was dead. After this quiet interlude came the fiercest fighting of the battle—bloody and
hand-to-hand. The Confederates tried desperately to push the Union soldiers off the fence and the ridge, but they refused to be moved.

The Federals Fall Back
The 15th Mississippi drove the Federals back to the main line and then advanced by lying flat and firing, wheeling on their backs and loading, rising and running forward ten steps, and again dropping and firing. They kept it up until they drove the 10th Indiana from the field.

The Confederates Give Way
The Confederates advanced with fixed bayonets on the 2nd Minnesota. The regiment responded with a horrific yell and for the next forty minutes poured volley after volley of shot at them. When the Confederates finally gave way they were so close to the Federals, with nothing but the fence between them, that some of the men of the 2nd Minnesota pulled the Confederates' guns out of their hands.

Inset for main photo: We were so close on them that one of the men had his beard

and whiskers singed by the fire of one of the muskets... another caught hold of one of their muskets and jerked it through the fence the two stood and fired at each other, their muskets crossing; both fell dead.
Col. Horatio P. Van Cleve, 2nd Minnesota U.S.

Left: Colonel Speed Fry, 4th Kentucky Infantry (U.S.)
HM NumberHM2J2Y
Series This marker is part of the National Historic Landmarks series
Year Placed2014
Placed ByMill Springs Battlefield Association
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, July 24th, 2019 at 5:01pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 701020 N 4103543
Decimal Degrees37.05661667, -84.73921667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 37° 3.397', W 84° 44.353'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds37° 3' 23.82" N, 84° 44' 21.18" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near , ,
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