The Dead at Talladega

(from Grace Jemison's "Historic Tales of Talladega)

These are the names of the soldiers who died at the Battle of Talladega

On the east side: Officers killed Nov. 9, 1813
Lt. Larkin Bradford
Lt. Robert Moore
Lt. Samuel Barton

On the north side: Privates killed Nov. 9, 1813
Nathan Harris
David Gold
Adam Motes

Wounded, afterwards, died:
Jeremiah Curley
William Arnold
John Hopkins
James Patton
Absolom Russell

On the west side: Privates killed Nov. 9, 1813
William McCall
Asa Harden
Thomas Taylor
Henry Barnes
James Gwin
James McClish
William Fletcher
Thomas Saunders

These men are honored with a monument erected by the Andrew Jackson Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution

A letter written by General Andrew Jackson to Governor Willie Blount

Camp Strother, November 15, 1813


In my letter of the 11th I gave you a hasty account of the battle of Talladega; and of the causes which compelled me to return to this place. I now do myself the honor of transmitting you, a more detailed account of the action; together with the report of the Adjutant Genl. of the killed and wounded.

About thirty miles below here, at a place by the name of Talladega, a hundred and sixty men of the friendly party of creeks with their women and children were forted in: more effectually to resist the efforts of the "Red Sticks" or hostile party. Late in the evening of the 7th: one of the principal men of the fort arrived here with the information that the enemy had arrived there in great numbers that morning and would certainly destroy the fort and all within it, unless speedy relief could be obtained from this army. Urged by this representation I immediately gave orders for taking up the line of march with 1200 infantry and 800 cavalry and mounted riflemen; leaving behind me the sick, the wounded and all the baggage, with what I considered a a sufficient force to protect them, until the arrival of Genl. White who was hourly expected. At 12 o'clock at night the army was in motion and I commenced crossing the river at Ten Islands opposite our late encampment which in a few hours was effected. On the night of the 8th I encamped within six miles of the enemy and about 11 o'clock two of the friendly indians with George Mayfield whom I had sent forward to reconnoitre the enemy returned with intelligence that they were encamped, within a quarter of a mile of the Fort, on the north side; but were unable to approach near enough to give me any accurate information of their numbers or precise situation. Within an hour afterwards old Chinnubby arrived from Turkey Town with a letter from General White, advising me of his retrograde movement occasioned by an order of Majr. Genl. Cocke. Finding that the utmost dispatch had become necessary for the protection of my rear, I immediately ordered the Adj. Genl. to prepare the line of march and at 4 o'clock we were in motion. The infantry in three columns, the Cavalry and mounted riflemen in the rear with flankers on each wing. The right wing of the Infantry was led by Col. Bradley. The centre by Col. Pillow and the left by Col. McCrowry: the right wing of the Cavalry by Col. Alcorn and the left by Colo. Cannon. The advance consisting of Capt. Deaderick's company of Artillery with muskets, Capt. Bledsoe's and Capt. Caperton's companies of Riflemen and Capt. Gordon's company of Spies, were marched 400 yards in front under the commany of Colo. Carrol the Inspector genl., to bring on the engagement. At 7 o'clock having arrived within a mile of the enemy, I ordered the cavalry and mounted Riflemen to advance on the right and left of the Infantry, and enclose the enemy in a circle. Two hundred and fifty of the cavalry and mounted Riflemen commanded by Lt. Colo. Dyer were placed in the rear of the centre, as a corps de reserve. Genl. Hall's Brigade occupied the right; Genl. Robert's the left; and were ordered to advance by heads of companies.

The Cavalry were ordered after having encircled the enemy by uniting the fronts of their columns and keeping their rear connected with the Infantry; to face and press inwards towards the centre, so as to leave the enemy no possibility of escape. In the execution of this order it unfortunately happened that too great a space was left between the rear of the right wing of the cavalry and Genl. Hall's Brigade through which a part of the enemy ultimately effected their retreat. At 8 o'clock the advance having arrived within 80 yards of the enemy, who were concealed in the dark shrubbery which covered the margin of a branch, received from them a heavy fire, which they returned with great intrepity, charged and dislodged them from their position; and turned them upon the right wing of Genl. Robert's Brigade. the advance then fell back as they had previously ordered, to the center. At the approach of the enemy three companies of the militia, having given one fire, commenced a retreat notwithstanding the exertions of Colo. McCrowry and Majr. Sevier, who are entitled to great praise for their bravery on the occasion. To fill the vacancy occasioned by this retreat, I immediately ordered up Colo. Bradley's Regt. of Volunteers, but finding the advance of the enemy, too rapid to admit of their arrival in time, I was compelled to order the reserve to dismount and meet them. The order was executed with great promptitude and gallantry and the enemy in that Quarter were speedily repulsed. The Militia who had retreated seeing the spirited stand, which was making by the Reserve, immediately rallied and recovering the position which the enemy had just driven them from, poured upon them a most destructive fire. The engagement now became general; and within 15 minutes the enemy were seen flying in every direction. On the left they were met and repulsed by the mounted riflemen. On the right a part of them escaped through the opening of the right wing of the cavalry and the Infantry; and were pursued with great slaughter to the mountains, a distance of three miles. In this pursuit the brave Colos. Pillow of the Infantry and Lauderdale of the Cavalry, Majr. Boyd of the mounted Infantry, and Lieut. Barton, were wounded; the latter of whom since died. You will perceive from a draft I shall send you that had there been no departure from the original order of battle; not an Indian could have escaped; and even as the battle did terminate, I believe that no impartial man can say that a more splendid result had in any instance attended our Arms, on land, since the commencement of the war. The force of the enemy is represented by themselves, to have been one thousand and eighty and it does not appear from their fires and the space of ground which they occupied that their number can have been less. Two hundred and ninety-nine were left dead on the ground; and no doubt many more were killed who were not found.. It is believed that very few escaped without a wound. In a very few weeks of I had a suffiency of supplies, I am thoroughly convinced, I should be able to put an end to Creek hostility.

The friendly creeks from Talladega tell me that the enemy consider themselves already completely beaten, and state as a proof of their sense of the magnitude of the defeat they have sustained, and of returning disposition for peace that they have since the battle, liberated several of the friendly party whom they had previously taken prisoners.

Too much praise cannot be bestowed upon the advance, led on by Colo. Carrol for the spirited manner in which they commenced and sustained the attack, not upon the Reserve commanded by Lt. Colo. Dyer and composed of Captns. Smith's Molton's Acum's Edward's and Hammond's companies for the gallantry with which they met and repulsed the enemy. In a word the officers of every grade, as well as the privates realised the high expenditures I had formed of them and merit the gratitude of their country.

I should do injustice to my staff composed of Majrs. Read and Searcy my aids, Colo. Sitler and Majr. Anthony Adjt. and asst. adjt. Col. Carroll Inspector genl. Majr. Strother typographe(r) Mr. Cunningham my secy. and Col. Stockley D. Hays Quarter Master Genl. not to mention that they were every where in the midst of danger, circulating my orders -- they deserve and receive my thanks.

I have the honor to be ... [incomplete transcription]

In a letter to John Cocke, November 18th, 1813, Jackson wrote:

"Previous to my setting out, a flag arrived from the Hillabee's accompanied by a letter from Robert Grayson (Grierson), soliciting peace for the Indians of those towns, and offering to receive it upon my terms I might think proper to propose. They admit that the late engagement at Talladega had proved fatal to their hopes, and they believed it had brought the greater part of the nation to a proper sense of their duty."

So it appeared the Creeks were going to surrender. But General White, oblivious to all if this, continued his course of action and thus, continued the war.