The Battle of Nashville

Howard Pyle




First Floor
Governor's Reception Room

Date Completed

Date Placed

Due to daily business use of this room, the painting may not be available for viewing.

Description from a letter from the artist to capitol architect Cass Gilbert

Representing the Second Brigade under the command of Col. Lucius F. Hubbard, comprising the Fifth and Ninth Minnesota, the Eleventh Missouri, the Eighth Wisconsin, the Second Iowa Regiments, which, at four o’clock p.m., on the 16th of December 1864, made the final charge that broke the Confederate lines and drove them back in rout from their last position.

The following brief account may supply any additional data which you may care to put upon the tablet to be placed below the picture;

The battle of Nashville was fought upon the 15th and 16th of December, 1864. The battle picture represents the second and final day of battle at about four o’clock in the afternoon of the 16th of December, 1864. It had been raining during the latter part of the afternoon, but ceased a little before four o’clock. The order was given to charge and the advance was made across a sodden cornfield, and against a stone wall, behind which lay the Confederate line. In spite of the shot and shell which poured upon them, the Minnesota regiments dashed against the wall and over it, driving the Confederates before them. The Minnesota regiments were nearest the turnpike, and the viewpoint of the picture is taken at or near the juncture of the stone wall and the turnpike. The two regiments, becoming somewhat intermingled in the charge, rushed to breast-work at about the same time, and each planted its flag almost simultaneously upon the captured stonewall. The nearest regiment is the Fifth, and the flag in the middle distance is the flag of the Ninth, which perhaps was planted upon the captured wall a fraction of time before the other.