Following the disastrous Battle of Franklin, Tenn., Nov. 30, 1864, the small community of 750 was left with some 9,500 casualties, including some 2,000 dead. Residences and other buildings in and around the town and battlefield had been turned into vast charnel-houses as field hospitals whose inmates often occupied for months during their recovery. One such was Carnton, the home of John and Carrie McGavock, which sat on the extreme eastern side of the battlefield fairly near a bend in the Harpeth River, across which Federal artillery from Ft. Granger had shelled the Confederate advance. Carrie McGavock had recognized Rev. Thomas Markham among the advancing troops, inviting him to use her home as a hospital for Gen. William Loring's Division. According to Confederate Col. W. D. Gale, in a letter to his wife, The wounded in hundreds were brought to [Carnton] during the battle and all the night after. Every room was filled, every bed had two poor bleeding fellows, every spare space, nick and corner, under the stairs, in the Hall, everywhere, but one room for her and family - and when the noble old house could hold no more, the yard was appropriated until the wounded and dead filled that. According to the current house folder, In the early hours of the next morning, the bodies of Confederate Generals John Adams, Hiram Granbury, Patrick Cleburne, and Otho Strahl were laid out on the back porch as the men of the Army of Tennessee filed past and paid their last respects. The floors of the home are still stained with the blood of the men treated there. Evident in the two upstairs west-facing bedrooms are places before the windows where makeshift operating tables once stood, the opposite corners of the rooms darkened with the blood from piles of amputated limbs stacked there. Bloody footprints attest to surgeons spending long hours shuffling in dripped blood as they amputated countless limbs throughout that night and the following day. Though the house has been otherwise beautifully restored, the floors have been left as mute witnesses to what happened here; unfortunately, photography is not allowed within the house itself. Again, from the current house brochure: The Confederate Cemetery, created in 1866, is the final resting place of 1,481 men killed during the Battle of Franklin. When the cemetery was established, all graves were marked with wooden head and foot boards. As these began to deteriorate, money was raised and the stone markers seen today were erected in 1890. Fortunately for posterity, although these low markers bear only numbers, they correspond to a journal displayed inside the house that documents the names of those who lie beneath them. ( Readers will certainly recognize Carnton and its cemetery as the setting of the recent best-selling novel Widow Of the South. ) In the final photo, notice Carnton House in the extreme right background; and an EARTH-MOVER on the extreme left! Happily, what was once the Franklin Country Club is well on its way to reclamation as Franklin Battlefield Park, with the former clubhouse as the new visitor center. Though currently making access to the house and its cemetery difficult, necessitating a round-about detour, the forecast is for this transformation to be complete by this fall and well before the 150th anniversary of the battle in 2014.