117 Visitor Center Lane
Dover, TN 37058
The Confederate gunners and troops in Fort Donelson were elated after they repulsed Union Flag Officer Andrew H. Foote’s gunboat fleet on February 14, 1862. Federal reinforcements continued to arrive, however, to supplement Gen. Ulysses S. Grant’s army. After a council of war, Confederate Gen. John B. Floyd ordered a dawn attack on the Union right flank to open an escape route. Col. Nathan Bedford Forrest and his cavalrymen led the way. As Confederate infantrymen forced Union Gen. John A. McClernand’s division back from the Cumberland River, Forrest endeavored to turn the Federals’ right flank. He led a charge against an Illinois battery and captured the guns but lost his horse. Next, Forrest’s men outflanked the 11th Illinois Volunteers after a stubborn resistance and forced a retreat with heavy Union losses. The Confederate drive stalled in front of Capt. Edward McAllister’s 1st Illinois Light Artillery.