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WITH A GRAPHIC ACCOUNT OF EACH MEMBER.
WENDELL D. CROOM, ESQ’R.,
And Published by the Survivors of the Company
FORT VALLEY, GEORGIA:
CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL
FROM GENERAL C. D. ANDERSON
FORT VALLEY, GA., MAY 17, 1879.
Wendell D. Croom, Esq.,
I have examined as carefully as my limited time would allow, the manuscript of the War-History of Company "C," (Beauregard Volunteers,) Sixth Georgia Regiment, written by yourself, and am much pleased with the tone and style of the work, as well as with its faithful execution. I think it is as correct a history of that famous old Company as could now be arrived at.
I hope a deserved success will crown your commendable efforts in this laudable enterprise, in transmitting our War-History unsullied to our posterity.
C. D. ANDERSON.
IN presenting this little work, the writer has not aimed at historic distinction, nor has he been swayed by principles of prejudice, or avarice; but has, at the request of the survivors of the Company of which he has the honor to have been a member, endeavored to compend in as brief and concise a manner as the nature of circumstances would allow, a graphic account of each member of the Company, together with a general out-line of its War-History. He indulges the hope that the work will meet with favorable reception at the hands of the friends of the company, and of a generous public, and that if any errors or over-sights should be found in it, that they will be passed as unintentional. He hereby tenders his acknowledgments to those of the survivors who so generously contributed to accelerate his labors by placing within his reach, much of the important data connected with the work. The work is respectfully dedicated to the memory of the Confederate dead who staked their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor, and poured out their life-blood upon the altar of their country, in defense of the cause that severed the Federal Compact, and led to the late terrible war between the States of the Federal Union.
WENDELL D. CROOM.
POWERSVILLE, GA., January 1879.
NEAR YORK, HOUSTON COUNTY GEO.,
Resolved: That Private W. D. Croom be requested to compile a complete Roster and History of Company C, Beauregard Volunteers.
The above resolution was unanimously sanctioned by the members of the Company present.
UPON the official announcement of the result of the Presidential election of November, 1860, that Mr. Abraham Lincoln of Illinois, had been elected President of the United States for the ensuing term, and that his election had been secured upon principles which, upon the one hand, were purely sectional, and upon the other hand, upon the broader and more comprehensive principles of centralization; that the States that voted for, and elected him, all lay north of what is known as Mason and Dixon’s line, and that he had not received a single electoral vote in any of the States South of that line. The Representative Men of the latter States, became alarmed and so inspired, their constituences for the safety, protection, and perpetuation of their political rights and institutions. Prominently among these may be mentioned the Right of local State Sovereignty, and the Institution of Slavery; which was indeed older than the Government itself, and had with-stood the shocks and storms of a mild fanaticism for the last half century, and which had so often, upon actual count in the Congress of the United States, been declared a local institution, and in no way subject to Federal interference. Its stability was now regarded as more imperiled and more uncertain than at any time during its existence upon this continent. To find a remedy for the evils which now seemed to be looming up in the near future, was a perplexing question. Elated by their signal triumph in the late election, it was feared by the men before alluded to, that, the party soon to come into power, and assume the reins of government, would seek by illegitimate means to abridge the right of local State Sovereignty, and enlarging the Federal powers of the Government by an assumption of power centralized in the Federal head, not delegated by the Constitution, acquire the right to abolish slavery everywhere by Federal enactment. It was now believed by most of the Representative Men before alluded to, that the impending evils might be averted, and the safety and protection of Southern Rights and Institutions, be best subserved, and perhaps finally consummated in a peacable withdrawal from the Union. Accordingly the people of South Carolina met in sovereign convention, and on the 20th day of December, 1860, passed an Ordinance of Secession, in which they declared the Union then subsisting between the State of South Carolina and the other States under the Federal Compact of the 23rd day of May, 1788 entitled the Constitution of the United States of America, to be totally and absolutely dissolved. And declaring also, all Acts and parts of Acts of the General Assembly of South Carolina, ratifying amendments of the said Constitution to be repealed. They claimed this Ordinance to be based alone upon the grounds that "the States of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Iowa," (all of which had voted for Mr. Lincoln,) had enacted laws which either nullified the acts of Congress for the rendition of fugitives from service, or rendered useless any attempt to enforce
them. Six other States soon followed South Carolina in passing similar Ordinances. Mississippi, on the 9th of January, 1861; Florida, on the 10th; Alabama, on the 11th; Georgia, on the 19th; Louisiana, on the 26th; and Texas, on the first of February. These States met by delegations at Montgomery, Ala., on the 4th of February, 1861, and immediately organized a new Union between themselves, and formed a new Constitution, under the name of the "Confederate States of America." Their Constitution was based upon all the essential principles of the Federal Compact of 1787, with its subsequent amendments. This Constitution for the permanent Government was to take effect on the 22nd of February, 1862. A Provisional Government was formed for one year, by electing Jefferson Davis of Mississippi, President, and Alexander H. Stephens of Georgia, Vice President. Mr. Davis was inaugurated on the 18th day of February, 1861, and selected for his Cabinet: Robert Toombs, of Ga., Secretary of State; Christopher G. Memminger, of S. C. Secretary of the Treasury; Leroy P. Walker, of Ala., Secretary of War; Stephen R. Mallory, of Fla., Secretary of the Navy; John H. Reagin, of Texas, Post Master-General. The Attorney-Generalship was designated the Department of Justice, and over this, Judah P. Benjamin, of La., was chosen to preside. The new Government thus organized, went into immediate operation.
Meantime, at the instance of Virginia, an informal Peace Congress was called to meet in Washington.
This body met in February. Twenty States were represented in it—Thirteen Northern, and seven Southern. Ex-President Tyler presided over its deliberations. In it the Southern States were emphatically assured that the Northern States would never retract from their determination in the matter of rendition of fugitives from service. This effort, therefore, to close the breach between the States, tended only to widen it. The Government at Montgomery despatched three Commissioners, John Forsyth, of Ala., Martin J. Crawford, of Ga., and Andrew J. Roman, of La., to Washington, to treat with the Federal authorities a peaceful and amicable adjustment, upon principles of equity and justice of all matters pertaining to the common property and public debt. President Buchanan refused to receive them in their official capacity.
Acting upon the right of eminent domain, as they claimed, the seceded States had before this, taken possession of all the Federal forts and arsenals within their limits, respectively, except Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor, Fort Pickens at Pensacola, and the fortifications in the Keys of the Southern coast of Florida, and had transfered the same jurisdiction over them to the Confederate States which had been excercised before by the United States.
Mr. Buchanan made no attempt to retake these forts. He held that a State could not rightfully or Constitutionally secede. He also further held to the very singular doctrine that he could not, nor could Congress rightfully and Constitutionally resort to coercive measures against the regularly constituted authorities of a State to prevent it. In this condition of things, Buchanan’s term of office expired on the 4th of March, 1861, and he retired. Mr. Abraham Lincoln, the new President elect, was installed into office at the usual time and place, and issued his Inaugural address, in which he held, as most of the Southern people did not, that the Union was older than the States, and declared it to be his avowed purpose to maintain it at all hazards, as well as
to "hold, occupy, and possess" all the forts, arsenals, and other public property, before held by the Federal authorities, and to collect the public revenue at all the ports of the seceded States. This was the only decisive policy indicated in his Inaugural. It will not be considered out of place to mention just here, that all of the Southern States, which had not, up to this time, seceded, did, in due course of time secede except Maryland, Missouri, and Kentucky. Through the influence of the secession element within their limits, Missouri and Kentucky formed Provincial Governments and co-operated with the seceded States. Held under military sway, and her people divided upon the subject, Maryland took no action in the matter. Part of her arms-bearing people united with the Confederates, and a part with the Federals. Virginia seceded on the 17th of April, Arkansas, on the 6th of May, North Carolina, on the 20th of May—the 86th anniversary of her celebrated Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. (In this, North Carolina was, in the matter of Revolutionary Independence, in advance of all of her co-States by forty-four days.) Tennessee seceded on the 8th of June. These all united with the new Confederation.
Upon the accession of Virginia to the Confederacy, the Confederate Government was transferred to Richmond, the capital of the State, where it remained till it was subverted, which occurred, it may be said, when the sword of Gen. Robert E. Lee was surrendered on the 9th of April, 1865, at Appomatox, C. H.
To return to the subject:
Anxious, if possible to effect an amicable reconciliation between the States, the Confederate States Commissioners, before named, addressed a note, on the 12th, of March, to Mr. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, in the new Cabinet, setting forth the character and object of their mission. Mr. Seward replied to this verbally and informally, through Mr. Justice John A. Campbell, of the Supreme Bench of the United States. He was a citizen of Alabama, in full sympathy with the Southern cause. He was therefore selected by Mr. Seward as a proper intermediary. In this way the Commissioners were given to understand that Mr. Seward was in favor of peace,—that Fort Sumter, about which the Commissioners felt the greatest concern, would be evacuated in less than ten days.
This proved, however, to be a farce and deception practiced upon the Commissioners by Mr. Seward and the Government at Washington. They were kept in the dark as regarded the intention of the Federal Government in relation to the status quo of Fort Sumter. And it was not until a provisioning and reenforcing fleet despatched from the ports of New York and Norfolk early in April, had actually hove in sight of Fort Sumter, that they were placed in possession of the facts of the intention of the Federal Government, in regard to Fort Sumter.
They came in possession of these facts through a notice given on the 8th of April to Gov. Pickens of South Carolina, that a fleet was then on its way to provision, and reenforce Fort Sumter. The fort was at this time commanded by Maj. Robt. Anderson, of the U. S. Army, with a force of less than a hundred, and with a very short supply of provisions. Gen. Gustave T. Beauregard was in command of about six thousand volunteer troops in Charleston at the time, collected for the purpose of defending the place. Gov. Pickens informed him of the notice he had received. This was telegraphed by Beauregard to the authorities at Montgomery.
The Secretary of War replied to Beauregard: "If you have no doubt of the authenticity of the notice of the Government at Washington to supply Fort Sumter by force, demand its evacuation; and if this should be refused, proceed to reduce it." On the 11th of April the demand for its evacuation was made by Gen. Beauregard. Maj. Anderson, in writing, stated that the demand would not be complied with. This was sent by Gen. Beauregard to Secretary of War at Montgomery, who returned the following response: "Do not needlessly desire to bombard Fort Sumter. If Maj. Anderson will state a reasonable specified time at which he will evacuate, and agree that, in the meantime, he will not use his guns against us, unless ours should be employed against Fort Sumter, you are authorized thus to avoid the effusion of blood. If this or its equivalent be refused, reduce the fort, as your judgement decides most practicable."
This was communicated to Maj. Anderson. He refused to accede.
The fleet was approaching; some of Beauregard’s batteries and forces were between it and Fort Sumter. Should it arrive, while Anderson still held the fort, they would be exposed to attack from the rear as well as from the front. Gen. Beauregard therefore gave Maj. Anderson notice that he would at an early specified hour compel him to withdraw from the fort. He accordingly opened fire upon it, at 4:30 on the morning of the 12th of April. This was returned by the guns of the fort. The fleet came near, but in the absence of official orders from the Government, took no part in the conflict. The bombardment lasted 32 hours. Maj. Anderson then agreed to capitulate. This scene is represented by those who witnessed it, to have been most "grand and terrific," especially at night, as the earth seemed to quake and tremble beneath the loud thunderings of the booming cannons engaged on the respective sides, and volume after volume of smoke ascended the mid-heavens, while the burning missiles, plunging in mad confusion in opposite directions, stretched their vivid trains across the horizon. To the "uninitiated," such a scene as this, was no doubt, very terrible, but in less than twelve months, to many, such scenes became very common.
The fall of Fort Sumter aroused the Northern people to the highest pitch, and enabled the party now in power, to draw large accessions from the Democratic, and American parties.
Indeed, it was the beginning of a war, which has but few, if any parallels in the annals of history. The world stood aloof, but looked on with wonder and amazement, while this terrible war, through the grievous duration of upwards of four years, loomed forth its gigantic proportions, and presented its hideous machinations of death and destruction in grand, terrible display, and the nations of the earth, with fearful anxiety awaited the impending result.
On the 15th of April, President Lincoln issued a Proclamation calling for 75,000 troops, and convening Congress in extra session on the fourth of July, following. The causes of the war, were now, by the Federals, laid at the door of the Confederates. They were charged with having desecrated the National flag, and with having used force and resistance against the legally constituted authorities of the Federal Government. On the other hand, the Confederates maintained that the silencing by them of the guns of Fort Sumter was only an act of defense in anticipation of an approaching attack from a hostile fleet, as announced by Gov. Pickens through the notification to him of the intention of the Federal authorities to reenforce Fort Sumter.
The Confederates stood, as they claimed, upon a well-established principle of public law, that "the aggressor in war" (that is he who begins it) "is not the first who uses force, but the first who renders force necessary." They therefore claimed that the despatching of the fleet before mentioned, from New York and Norfolk, was an open declaration of war. The call by President Lincoln for 75,000 troops, was met by a similar call from the Confederate Government at Montgomery for volunteer troops to repel invasion. The arms-bearing people of the Confederate States, with a gallantry unsurpassed in the annals of the world, responded to the call.
They were soon organizing into battalions and regiments, and hurrying with railroad speed to the theatre of war. It was now, and in this state of affairs, that Charles D. Anderson, then engaged in a mercantile business in the town of Fort Valley, Houston County, Georgia, proposed to organize the Company upon whose History we are now about to enter, and, as Captain, lead it to the field of action. Being a man of unsullied reputation and extensive popularity, his proposition found a ready response everywhere. The Company was soon organized and in trim. A great many more tendered their services than he was allowed at that time to muster in. It is quite aside from our present purpose, to undertake to enter into a detailed account of this war -- its origin, causes, conduct, guilt, crimes, consequences, and results, as well as its sufferings, sacrifices, and heroic exploits on the respective sides. As many volumes on this subject have already been written, an attempt of this sort upon our part, would prove as futile as it would be vain in us. Indeed, such an attempt would be very well calculated to well nigh beggar language, and paralize the pen of the ablest historian. The work we have before us, and in hand, is to write the War-History of the Company just attended to. With this we will now proceed.
CAMPAIGN OF 1861.
OUR Company "C" was organized at Fort Valley, Houston county Georgia, in the month of May of this year; titled the "Beauregard Volunteers," in honor of Gen. Gustave T. Beauregard, that gallant Louisianian, whose animating tones were so often, during the war, echoed and reachoed from the Potomac to the Mississippi, and whose memory stands so inseparably linked with Confederate fame. The Company as first organized, was officered as follows, commissioned and non-commissioned staffs: Charles D. Anderson, Captain, Charles H. Richardson, 1st Lieutenant, Bartlett M. Bateman, 2nd Lieutenant, Seaborn L. Mimms 3rd Lieutenant, William W. Carnes, Orderly Sergeant, James M. Culpepper, 2nd Sergeant, Geo W. Bateman, 3rd Sergeant, Amos W. Murray 4th Sergeant, Isaac N. Vinson 5th Sergeant, Joel L. Disekes, 1st Corporal, Leonidas Brown 2nd Corporal, Samuel H. Hiley 3rd Corporal, Thomas S. Clark, 4th Corporal, Reuben A. Kilby 5th Corporal, Green Avera Musician, J. W. Avera, Company Ensign. The Company was at first mustered into service with a full quota, that is, eighty four men, rank and file. The privates, comprising the Company from time to time during the war including the original members and recruits from time to time were as follows:
Elias Adams; Charles D. Anderson, Jr.; Louis F. Anderson; Emanuel Aultman; John D. Aultman; Solomon Aultman; Josiah Avera; Mathew G. Avera; Drewry M. Bateman; Needham Bateman; Lewis H. Beddingfield; Sumter Belvin; Henry T. Brookins; Thomas Butler; James M. Bynum; Leonidas Choidoine; George W. Cheeves; James Clark; Thomas N. Clark; William T. Collins; James Corbitt; Stephen Corder; John Cooper; Charles H. Coussins; Jonathan F. Coussins; Jonathan D. Cowart; Wendell D. Croom; William Crouch, John C. Davidson; William S. Davis; Edward Dinkins; John R. Dukes; William B. Dukes; Eli Ethridge; Elijah Ethridge; John Ethridge; Allen Evans; Samuel Felder; Alexander Finlayson; Samuel A. Fields; Charles R. Fogg; John C. Gammage; John W. Gatling; Samuel Gassett; James W. Giles; William E. Giles; Alexander Glozier; James M. Graves; Charles G. Gray; Jefferson M. Gray; William C. Gray; Hosea C. Graydon; Ulysses M. Gunn; William S. Haddock; Geo. W. Hampton; J. N. Hightower; David H. Hiley; Talbot G. Hammock; Benj. F. Hammock; Theophilus Hardison; John I. Harris; William N. Harris; William M. Hartley; Daniel Hearn; Obediah Hearn; Augustus C. Haslam; William M. Haslam; William C. Harrison; Sullivan R. Harrison; George M. D. Hunt; Seaborn M. Hunt; John C. Humber; Daniel B. Hutto; Drewry M. Jackson; James M. Johns; Robt. W. Johnson; Thos. E. Jones; Burwell T. Jordan; William H. Leadingham; William H. Lightfoot; R. D. Lightfoot; James Leminac; Thomas A. Lowe; William H. H. Lowe; Jas. Mason; John Mayo; William M. McDonald; John F. McDonald; William F. McGehee; John M. Miller; Robt. A. Miller; Francis M. Murray; John W. Murray; David R. Odom; Jas. B. Odom; Thos. Odom; Willis T. Odom; David J. Perminter; Geo. W. Piles; Geo. W. Plant; Benj. L. Powell;
Richard H. Powell; John S. Price; John F. Renfroe; John J. Rumph; Louis D. Rumph; Samuel J. Rumph; Henry C. Sawyer; Ichabod N. Scarborough; Columbus Self; Lott Self; Marion Self; James W. Shines; William I. Shines; Andrew J. Shirah; Thomas O. Skellie, Alex. G. Slappey; Geo. W. Slappey; Jas. Slappey; Russell T. Slappey; Uriah Slappey; Leonidas P. Sledge; Spencer R. Sledge; Wiley T. Sledge; William Sorrell; Mack Sperry Alexander Sullivan; Allen Sullivan; Francis M. Strippling; Ebenezer W. Turner; Bryant Vinson; Daniel Vinson; Henry B. Vinson; Joseph S. Vinson; Leavin Vinson; John Visage; Pleasant A. White; John C. Wilson; William Young.
Having organized his Company as before stated, and having been commissioned, Captain Anderson made a tender of the services of himself and Company to the Confederate Government through Joseph E. Brown, then Governor of the State of Georgia, which was accepted, and he was ordered to rendezvous at the Camp of instruction at Atlanta, Ga., on the 25th of May, whither nine other companies had been ordered to rendezvous at that time to organize the Sixth Regiment of Georgia Volunteers (Infantry). Preparatory to a faithful compliance with this order, the Company paraded at Fort Valley on the morning of the 24th, to await the arrival of the train, which was to take them to Atlanta, and to receive a handsomely decorated silk flag to be presented by the ladies of Fort Valley and vicinity in token of their high appreciation of the valor and patriotism of the Company. In behalf of the ladies, the flag was presented by Miss Carrie Dinkins, of Houston county, Ga., with appropriate remarks. In behalf of the Company, the flag was received by Ensign Dr. J. W. Avera, who responded to the remarks of Miss Dinkins in a chaste, well-timed speech, in which he took occasion to assure the ladies that the flag should never trail in the dust; but that it would be borne aloft in triumph on all the battle-fields upon which it might become necessary to unfurl it to the breeze. Nor should the fair donors ever be put to the blush, or ever feel ashamed on account of his manifestation of their confidence in the valor of the donors of this high compliment. Whether these assurances, given by Ensign Avera, were faithfully, or ill kept, we propose to show from the following pages.
NOTE.—Howell M. Rose was with the Company at Yorktown in 1861, and a while in 1862; but he was never mustered into service. His name is therefore not included in the roll.
Many other toasts and ceremonies were indulged in by other members of the company, and their friends. Hon. Dr. E. J. McGehee made a very feeling farewell address to the Company, which was replied to by 1st. Lieut. Chas. H. Richardson. Master Chas. G. Gray, Capt. of a company of boys (Fort Valley Cadets) made a speech, renowned for its patriotism and eloquence. This was replied to, in a spirited manner, by Private Thos. S. Jones.
Although other companies were at the same time being organized in Houston county, the Beaureguard Volunteers seemed to be the pride and pet of the community. The old men and ladies entered almost unanimously into the work of giving to that company a propitious start into the service. A meeting had been held at the M. E. Church in Fort Valley, by the more prominent citizens of that place and vicinity, and after offering a prayer to Almighty God, invoking divine favor and protection for the members of the company, the following
named gentlemen made liberal contributions to defray the expenses of the company: Rev. Geo. W. Persons; Rev. William A. Skellie; Mr. Williamson Mimms; Mr. Miles L. Greene; Col. W. J. Anderson; Mr. Jacob Hiley; Dr. E. J. McGehee; Mr. George W. Haslam; Hon. James W. Hardison; Mr. J. J. Clark and Mr. P. W. Gray. These contributions far exceeded the amount necessary to defray the expenses, and these liberal minded, whole-souled men had to be importuned to desist from giving.
The ladies prepared a sumptuous dinner at the Planters Hotel, for the Company on the day of its departure, which was participated in by the "Crawford Grays," the invited guests of the Company. The ladies, old and young, applied themselves assiduously, to work some garment, or keep-sake, to present to the Company. When we left Fort Valley, we had enough baggage and trumpery to supply a whole division of troops in actual service. This was perhaps the most gala day connected with the history of Fort Valley, and the largest assemblage to witness the departure of the "Beauregard Volunteers," for the theatre of war, that ever assembled in that town before, on any occasion. Joy, Sorrow, enthusiasm, patriotism, and tears, were freely commingled.
The boys were now brought to the trying ordeal of bidding adieu to the loved ones who had to be left behind, and giving to them the farewell-clasp of the hand, and go forth to brave the invading foe now rapidly concentrating his forces along the frontier lines of the seceded States. This was gone through with, without the trickle of a tear, down the manly cheeks of a single one of this noble little patriot band. In due time the train arrived, and the Company was soon en route for Atlanta, whither it arrived the next day. (25th.) The next day (26th,) the Regiment was organized, and consisted of the ten companies named and designated in the following order, viz:
"Sidney Brown Infantry;" Captain; William M. Arnold, designated Company "A." "Lookout Infantry;" Captain, John H. Hannah, designated Company "B." "Beauregard Volunteers;" Captain, Charles D. Anderson, designated Company "C." "Butler Volunteers;" Captain, James M. Newton, designated Company ‘D.’ ‘Crawford Grays;’ Captain, Wilde C. Cleveland, designated Company "E." "Mitchell Independents;" Captain, Edward H. Shackleford, designated Company "F." "Butler Vanguards;" Captain, John T. Griffin, designated Company "G." "Baker Fire-Eaters;" Captain, Alfred H. Colquitt, designated Company "H." "Twiggs Guards;" Captain John W. Barclay, designated Company "I." "Gilmer Blues;" Captain John T. Lofton, designated Company "K."
Upon organizing the Regiment, Captain Alfred H. Colquitt, of Company "H.," was elected Colonel.
Captain James M. Newton, of Company "D," was elected Lieutenant-Colonel; and Philemon Tracy, Editor of the Georgia (Macon) Telegraph, was elected Major. It is but justice to the Regiment, to state in this connection, that this was the first Confederate Regiment to tender its services to the Government for three years, or during the existence of the war. On the next day, (27th.,) the Regiment thus organized, left Atlanta for Yorktown, Va., whither it had been ordered for duty. Arrived at Yorktown, the 2nd. of June, and temporarily attached to a brigade commanded by Brig. Gen. Gabriel J. Baines, (of torpedo notoriety.) Our Company was now, in connexion with the balance of the Regiment, assigned a long, laborious task of fatigue duty, fortifying Yorktown,
against the approaches of the enemy to Richmond, up the Peninsula. With this exception, we remained comparatively inactive during the remainder of the year, except an occasional tramp down to Big Bethel, to watch the manœuvres of the enemy, which he occasionally demonstrated from that quarter. Shortly after our arrival at Yorktown, Colonel Colquitt superseded General Raines in command of the brigade, and commanded it with the rank of Colonel, acting brigadier General, till 1862, when he was commissioned Brigadier General. To this Brigade, we were permanently attached, and so continued until the close of the war.
We will now note the changes that occurred in the membership of the Company, during this year, with the names of those who died of disease contracted in the service.
Upon the organization of the Regiment, as before stated, 1st Lieutenant Charles H. Richardson, was elected Surgeon; his health failing, he resigned, returned home, and after recovering his health, organized a company, and went again to the service as Captain in the 57th Georgia Regiment, (Infantry.) In this position he remained to the close of the war. It is but simple justice to Dr. Richardson to state that, during the time he was connected with our Regiment as Surgeon, the Regiment passed through that worst of army scourges, the measles. The Regiment was composed principally of young men, who were subject to this fell destroyer. Dr. Richardson was incessant in his efforts, day and night, to alleviate the sufferings of the victims, till his health failed, and he resigned at the advice of his friends. He will long be remembered by those who survived the disease under his skill and untiring energy in their behalf.
Third Lieut. Seaborn S. Mimms, was elected First Lieutenant, to fill the vacancy occasioned by the resignation of 1st Lieut. Charles H. Richardson. He soon resigned this position, returned home, and enrolled himself with the 57th Regiment, Georgia Volunteers, (Infantry.) In this position he remained to the close of the war.
Second Lieutenant Bartlett M. Bateman, wholly disapproving of the course pursued by the Company, under Colonel Colquitt’s order for filling vacancies by election, instead of promotion, declared the course to be unprecedented, and at variance with good discipline and the Army Regulations; whereupon, he resigned, returned home, and enrolled himself with the 8th Georgia Cavalry. With this command he remained to the close of the war.
Upon the resignation of 1st Lieut. Seaborn S. Mimms, Dr. William I. Greene, not then a member of the Company, was elected to fill his place. He accepted the position. This occurred at the time the Regiment was scourged with the measles. Lieut. Greene assisted Surgeon Richardson in prescribing for, and nursing the sick. There were, at one time, in our Company alone, including sick and convalescents, seventy cases, victims to this dread scourge. His health soon failed, and he retired from field service, and was assigned to hospital duty, as Surgeon, in Macon, Georgia.
Upon the organization of the 45th Georgia Regiment, he again volunteered as Surgeon to that regiment.
He was soon compelled to again retire from field-service, on account of continued ill health. Governor Brown now appointed him Surgeon-General of the 23rd Senatorial District, Georgia State troops. This imposed upon Dr. Greene, a high and responsible duty, which he performed ably and faithfully.
When the Georgia Militia were called into active service in 1864, he again volunteered as Surgeon to the 3rd Militia regiment in General C. D. Anderson’s Brigade. The Medical department finding him still unable for field service, assigned him to hospital duty, where he remained to the close of the war.
Second Sergeant James M. Culpepper, who had been elected 3rd Lieut., to fill the vacancy caused by the election of 3rd Lieutenant Mimms to the office of 1st Lieutenant, was now promoted to the office of 1st Lieutenant. And Private Thos. S. Jones was elected 2nd Lieutenant, and Private Emanuel Aultman was elected 3rd Lieutenant. His health soon failing, he resigned and returned home. 5th Corporal Jonathan D. Cowart was elected to fill his place. Private John M. Miller was appointed Sergeant-Major of the Regiment. Orderly Sergeant William W. Carnes, having been elected to a Lieutenancy in another Command, was transferred. Name of command not recollected. Private Jefferson M. Gray was elected to fill his place. 3rd Sergeant George W. Bateman was discharged on the grounds of his physical disability. He returned again to the company in 1863, and remained with it to the close of the war. 4th Sergeant Amos W. Murray was promoted 2nd Sergeant to fill the vacancy made by the election of 2nd Sergeant Culpepper to the 3rd Lieutenancy. 5th Sergeant Isaac N. Vinson was promoted 3rd Sergeant to fill the place of 4th Sergeant Murray, promoted. Private Samuel Felder was elected 4th Sergeant. 1st Corporal Joel L. Disker was promoted 5th Sergeant. 2nd Corporal Leonidas Baown, was promoted 1st Corporal. 3rd Corporal Hiley was promoted 2nd Corporal. 4th Corporal Thomas S. Clark was promoted 3rd Corporal. 5th Corporal Reuben A. Kilby was promoted 4th Corporal, and Private Jonathan D. Cowart was elected 5th Corporal. 3rd Corporal Thos. S. Clark died, and Private Bryant Vinson was elected to fill the vacancy. 5th Corporal Jonathan D. Cowart, was elected 2nd Lieutenant, and Private George W. Cheves was elected to fill the vacancy.
NOTE.—We omitted to state in its proper time and place that Private Geo. M. D. Hunt was elected 3d Corporal, and filled the interim between the death of 3d Corporal Thos. S. Clark and his own death, which occurred soon after his election. Then private Theophilus Hardison was elected to fill the vacancy; he soon died, and Private Bryant Vinson was elected. Also, Private Emanuel Aultman was elected 3d Sergeant after the discharge of 3d Sergeant Geo. W. Bateman. He filled this place till he was elected 2d Lieutenant. Then 5th Sergt. Isaac N. Vinson, was promoted to his place. Also, Privates J. N. Hightower and Edward Dinkins were discharged upon the grounds of physical disability. They afterwards united with the 57th Regiment Georgia Volunteers, and remained with it to the close of the war.
Also, that Privates Daniel Vinson and Leavin Vinson, were discharged upon the grounds of physical disability. Daniel re-entered the service with the 8th Georgia Cavalry. Leavin did not again re-enter on account of continued feeble health.
We will also further note in this connection, that 3d Corporal Thos. S. Clark was the first to die of disease contracted in the service, and Private William Hampton the second. The deaths of all who died of disease contracted in the service, occurred successively as they stand rotated in their proper places, or as nearly so as the facts could be arrived at.
The dawn of this year found our Company at Yorktown, where it had been on duty the preceding year. The boys, actually almost "spoiling for a fight." The brilliant achievements won by the Confederate arms the previous year inspired them with high hopes for the result of this year. They felt chargrined that they had not been the honored participants in none of the engagements that had won these brilliant achievements. They were therefore anxious to be led against the enemy, fearing lest the war should close before they could have a chance of fully trying their hands at the tug of war. This fear was shortly afterwards dispelled, as we shall see by tracing events a little further, and a different kind of fear aroused.
After his defeat at Manassas on the 21st of July, 1861, the enemy vigorously engaged in organizing and equipping a powerful army of 120,000 men under the immediate supervision and command of Gen. Geo. B. McClellan, to operate against Richmond the ensuing year. This army was organized at Washington and put in motion on the 8th of March. It was first directed against Gen. Joseph E. Johnston at Manassas, with a force of not over 30,000, all told. This world-renowned strategist and tactician adroitly withdrew this little army and established it near Richmond, thus eluding the threatened crushing blow. This caused Gen. McClellan to change his line of operations. His plan was then to approach Richmond by the Chesapeake Bay, up the Peninsula, using the York River as a base. The Peninsula was at that time defended by Gen. J. Bankhead Magruder, with a force of not over 11,000. To support these, and check the advance of the overwhelming forces of the enemy now moving upon Richmond, up the Peninsula, Gen. Johnston with the skill and strategy of a General indeed, set himself to work. He concentrated all of his available forces, amounting to about 45,000, at or near Yorktown.
By these rapid movements, and manœuvres of Johnston, together with the inclemency of the weather, and wretched condition of the roads, McClellan’s advance was so retarded that it was not until May that he reached as far as Yorktown. Johnston now evacuated Yorktown and retired before his formidable antagonist. Several encounters took place as Johnston, with consummate strategy continued to retire before his formidable antagonist. The most important of these was at Williamsburg. It occurred on the morning of the 5th of May, just as the sun, with his silver-tinted fingers from behind the eastern horizon had gently lifted the pavilion of darkness, and was looming forth his morning brilliancy with all of its radiant splendor, that a shot from the Confederate artillery announced to the enemy that the ground upon which he pressed his hostile feet was sacred, and would be every inch contested. The missiles of death were soon hurling and plunging furiously through the air, while the earth seemed to quake and tremble beneath the loud thunderings of deep-throated artillery, and a shower of lead fell in torrents all around. Our Company was now, for the first time, fully under the enemy’s fire. The boys stood like heroes. They met the grim monster death as it were, with a chivalry that would have done honor to the Spartan band at Thermopylæ. They shrunk not nor faltered, but pressed onward in the cause they had so gallantly espoused. Fortunately, we have no casualties to report. Our Company passed through this terrific scene unscathed.
This, however, was but the precursor to what soon after transpired, as we shall see by tracing events a little further. The advance of the enemy was now considerably checked. He continued however, to advance slowly, swinging his mighty hosts around, pressing hard upon the Confederate left flank till he reached the right bank of the Chickahominy River. Here on the 31st of May the two armies met in deadly combat and fought the bloody battle known as the battle of the Seven Pines. Our command was placed in position and ordered to make a vigorous assault upon the enemy’s center. The charge had to be made up an acclivity difficult of ascent on account of a dense growth of under-brush. In less time than it takes to pen these lines, ten of our gallant Company lay dead and wounded on the field. The killed were: 5th Sergt. Samuel Felder and Privates Charles H. Coussens and Burwell T. Jordan. The wounded were: Orderly Sergeant Jefferson M. Gray, 2d Sergt. Amos W. Murray, 3d Sergt. Isaac N. Vinson, and Privates Jas. M. Bynum, Ebeneezer W. Turner, Louis D. Rumph and Leonidas P. Sledge. The shock of this terrible battle had the effect to set McClellan back for a time. He, however, resumed the aggressive, and continued to advance up the Chickahominy to within a few miles of Richmond. In the meantime, while Johnston had thus been holding McClellan in check, and thwarting his plans, Gen. Robert E. Lee had been recalled from the Southern sea-coast to assist Johnston in command, and Gen. "Stonewall" Jackson***** had been ordered down from the valley of the Shenandoah.
He reached the field of action with 15,000 troops just in time to render the assistance so much needed and to parry the blow now aimed at the Confederate Capitol from the enemy’s right. The thunder of his guns on the evening of the 26th of June, on the rear right flank of McClellan’s army, which now stood a straddle the Chickahominy, was the opening signal of the six day’s terrible life and death struggle which now ensued around the Confederate Capitol. The battles that were fought during this ever-memorable struggle of six days duration, were under the direction of Gen. Lee, who had succeeded to the chief command upon Gen. Johnston being severely wounded at Seven Pines, and were as follows: Mechanicsville and Beaver-Dam Creek, the 26th; in these engagements our Company suffered but one casualty, Private Daniel B. Hutto was wounded. Gaines’ Mill and Cold Harbor the 27th; at Cold Harbor our Company suffered severely. A recital of the casualties is revolting in the extreme. They are as follows: 2d Lieut. Thos. S. Jones; 1st Corpl. Leonidas Brown; and Privates J. W. Avera, Needham Bateman, Louis H. Beddingfield, Thos. N. Clark, John Cooper, John C. Gammage, Hosea Graydon, Benj. F. Hammock, William H. Leadingham, David R. Odom, Mark Sperry and Ichabod N. Scarborough, were all killed; 2d Corpl. Sam’l H. Hiley, 4th Corpl. Reubin A. Kilby, 5th Corpl. Geo. W. Cheeves, and Privates Mathew G. Avera, Thos. Butler, James Clark, Jonnathan F. Coussens, William S. Davis, Drewry M. Jackson, Thos. A. Lowe, William M. McDonald, William Sorrell, Francis M. Stripling and Joseph S. Vinson, were all severely wounded. Private William Sorrell lost his right arm which permanently disabled him from further active service during the war 1st Sergt. Ulysses M. Gunn, while bearing his country’s flag aloft, fell severely wounded; his wound was so severe as to permanently disable him from further active service during the war. He will probably never fully recover from it. He held at the time, the position of Regimental Ensign. Savage Station, the 29th; in this engagement our Company took no part, not being present. Frayser’s Farm and White Oak Swamp; in these engagements our Company, though terribly exposed to the enemy’s fire during their entire duration, in which the most heroic daring was displayed on both sides, suffered but one casualty worth noting, Private Drewry M. Bateman was killed. Malvern Hill, the 21st of July; in this engagement Private William T. Collins was severely wounded. In this long, and most sanguinary struggle, McClellan was defeated and his army completely routed. He sought and obtained refuge under cover of the heavy metal of his gun-boats at Harrison’s Landing, on James River. Thus ended the Peninsula campaign as it was called.
The brilliant achievement won by the Confederate arms in this series of engagements, lost to Gen. McClellan for a time, the command of the Grand Army of the Potomac. He was removed and Maj. Gen. John Pope put in command. This most sanguine officer, after recruiting his army for a time, to use his own language, established his "headquarters in the saddle" and set out against Richmond overland, by way of Manassas, where the Federal army had been so signally defeated under Gen. Irwin McDowell, in July of the previous year. To meet and repel this threatened invasion, Gen. Lee put his army in motion on the 18th of August. The two armies on the 30th on the rolling grounds of Manassas, and fought the second great battle which take their name after that place.
In this battle our Company took no part, our Brigade having been held in reserve. The result of this was another brilliant achievement. The Army of Virginia, as it was now styled, was, with its most sanguine commander, Gen. Pope, completely routed and driven to his fortifications near Washington. This result not being satisfactory with the Federal authorities at Washington, Gen. Pope was displaced and Gen. McClellan again placed in command. Elated by his success at Manassas, and for the purpose of provisioning his army, Leo now made an aggressive movement into Maryland. McClellan followed him. En route several engagements ensued between detachments of the two armies. The most important of these were Boonesboro’, or South Mountain, on the 14th of September, and Harper’s Ferry on the 15th. In each of these engagements our Company took an active part, but fortune so ordered it that we suffered no casualties. Two days afterwards, on the 17th, the two entire armies became terribly engaged at early dawn of day, in deadly conflict at Sharpsburg, and fought the bloody battle which takes its name after that place. This is known as the great drawn battle between Lee and McClellan, each holding his ground without any decisive result on either side. In this battle our Company suffered most terribly as we shall see. To our Brigade was assigned the onerous duty of defending a narrow pass in one of the ranges of South Mountain, through which, if McClellan’s army was permitted to pass, the result would be the utter annihilation of Lee’s army. This, of course, was well known to each commander. We boldly stood to the task, while wave after wave, from a vast ocean of living human soldiery, presenting as it were, an unbroken forest of glittering steel, rolled against us with the force and vehemence of a sliding avalanche down a mountain side. The battle soon grows furious, everything is stilled in the very silence of death, except the fierce battle-cry, the din and clash of arms and the shrieks and groans of the wounded and dying; the elements are enveloped in a cloud of smoke ascending the mid heavens, friends and comrades are falling on every hand, but no relief for us, our position must be held or all is lost, we nobly stand to it, gallantly repulsing charge after charge from an infuriated enemy, grown well-nigh frantic over his fruitless efforts to expel us from this coveted stronghold. Fortunately, nightfall puts an end to this dreadful conflict and we are relieved, carrying with us the proud cognomen of having held our position in the face of all the force and fury that could be brought against us. Our casualties in this terrible conflict were: Privates James W. Giles, William M. Hartley, Andrew J. Mills and William H. Lightfoot, killed; and Privates Louis F. Anderson, Henry T. Brookins, Willis T. Odom, John J. Rumph, William F. McGehee, Corpl. Richard H. Powell, 1st Lieut. James M. Culpepper and 2nd Lieut. Jonnathan D. Cowart, wounded. Capt. Charles D. Anderson was wounded and taken prisoner, as was also private William F. McGehee taken prisoner, who was soon after paroled.
We stop for a moment to relate a little incident that occurred with Capt. Anderson while a prisoner at Fort Delaware. He was permitted to address a letter to William Bryce & Co., Hardware Merchants, N. Y., and Louis B. Brown & Co., Clothing Merchants, of the same city, with all of whom he had dealt extensively before the war, and between whom and himself an undisturbed friendship existed; setting forth his destitute condition and asking them to afford him some temporary relief.
These generous hearted merchants responded promptly. Bryce & Co., sent him fifty dollars in cash, and Brown & Co., sent about fifty dollars worth of clothing. After taking a bare sufficiency to meet his own actual necessities, Capt. Anderson promptly distributed the remainder among his destitute comrades. We have simply adverted to this circumstance to show the generous hearted disposition that has ever characterized this noble hearted man in every department of life.
We will again resume the subject. On the morning after the battle it was found by inspection that out of our entire Brigade there were not over 200 men able to report for duty. It was on this occasion that Gen. Colquitt shed tears at seeing the extent of the suffering of his gallant Brigade in the previous day’s action.
On the 22d, five days after this battle, President Lincoln issued his celebrated Emancipation Proclamation. This gave a new turn to the war, and stimulated quite an impetus to its more vigorous prosecution. Especially upon the part of the Confederates who now resorted to every available means to push the war forward on a more gigantic scale than ever before. Shortly after the issuing of this proclamation McClellan was again displaced and Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside, supposed at the time to be in full sympathy with the emancipationists, was placed at the head of the Grand Army of the Potomac. This new chief immediately set himself to work and inaugurated another grand campaign against Richmond. His chosen line of approach to that much coveted city, was a long over-land route by the way of Fredericksburg. Now, under the ever active and untiring "Stonewall" Jackson, we were put on a forced march of ten days’ duration, marching on an average of twenty miles each day. We started on this march from Strasburg on the morning of the 26th of November, in the midst of a violent snow-storm. Burnside reached Fredericksburg about the 6th of December, and found himself confronted by Gen. Lee from the opposite banks of the Rappahannock River. He crossed the river about the 10th and gave battle on the 13th. This is known as the battle of Fredericksburg. The two entire armies became engaged in this terrible conflict. The contest was heroic on both sides. Our Company, though exposed to the enemy’s fire during the entire battle of two days’ duration, was so fortunate as to pass through unharmed. The result of this battle was the complete routing of Burnside, and driving back his army with great loss across the Rappahannock. All further active operations on both sides now ceased for this year, and the two armies here went into winter quarters. (The result of the battle at Fredericksburg not being satisfactory with the authorities at Washington, Burnside was removed and Gen. Joseph Hooker was put in command.) Here the curtain of time dropped upon the closing scene of this year.
WE will now note the changes that occurred in the membership of the Company during this year, together with the names of those who died of disease contracted in the service.
Capt. Charles D. Anderson was promoted to the rank of Major, to wear the star of the gallant Major Philemon Tracy, killed in battle at Sharpsburg on the 17th of September. 1st Lieut. James M. Culpepper was promoted Captain, to fill Anderson’s place, 2d Lieut. Jonnathan D. Cowart was promoted 1st Lieutenant, to fill Culpepper’s place, and 3d Lieut.
Jefferson M. Gray, who had this year been elected to fill the place made vacant by the promotion of 3rd Lieutenant Cowart to the 2nd Lieutenancy, upon the death of 2nd Lieut. Jones, killed in battle at Cold Harbor on the 27th of June, was promoted 2nd Lieutenant, to fill Cowart’s place.
Private Seaborn M. Hunt was elected 3rd Lieutenant, to fill the vacancy made by the promotion of 3rd Lieut. Gray. Upon the election of Orderly Sergeant Jefferson M. Gray to the 3rd Lieutenancy, to fill the place made vacant by the promotion of 3rd Lieut. Cowart to the 2nd Lieutenancy after the death of 2nd Lieut. Thomas S. Jones, killed in battle at Cold Harbor on the 29th of June, as before stated, 2nd Sergt. Amos W. Murray was promoted Orderly Sergeant, and 3d Sergt. Isaac N. Vinson was promoted 2nd Sergeant, and 5th Sergt. Joel L. Diseker was promoted 3rd Sergeant. 4th Sergeant Samuel Felder having been killed in battle at Seven Pines on the 31st. of May, as before stated, 2nd Corporal Samuel H. Hiley, was promoted 4th Sergeant.
Corporal Leonidas Brown having been killed in battle at Cold Harbor on the 27th of June, as before said; 3rd Corporal Bryant Vinson was promoted 5th Sergeant. Private Richard H. Powell was elected 1st Corporal, and Private Talbot G. Hammock was elected 2nd Corporal. 4th Corporal Reuben A. Kilby was promoted 3rd Corporal, and 5th Corporal Geo. W. Cheves was promoted 4th Corporal. Private Lewis F. Anderson was transferred to Butler’s South Carolina Cavalry, then on duty in that State. With this command he remained to the close of the war. C. D. Anderson, Jr. was discharged on the grounds of physical disability. He never afterward joined any branch of the service. Privates Chas. G. Gray, Green Avera, and Thos. O. Skellie, being minors, were discharged. Upon arriving at full age, they again entered the service with the Western army.
5th Corporal Geo W. Cheves was placed upon detached service with the Signal Service Department in Virginia. With this department he remained to the close of the war. Private John Etheridge was discharged upon the grounds of physical disability. He again entered the service with the Southern Rights Battery where he shortly afterwards died of disease contracted in the service.
Private William M. Haslam was appointed Hospital Steward. In this position he remained to the close of the war. Dr. Haslam will long be remembered by those, for whose welfare he ever exerted himself to the best of his ability, and exercised the most vigilant care. Private William F. McGehee was appointed to a position as orderly on Gen. Colquitt’s non-commissioned staff. In this position he remained to the close of the war.
Private John C. Humber was transferred; but the command to which the transfer was made, not recollected.
On the grand, but fatiguing march into Maryland, Private Sumter Belvin being sick, broke down, and was suddenly missing. We afterwards learned that he was captured the enemy, among whom, he met an old schoolmate, who had him kindly cared for until he got well; after which, he was sent to Point Lookout, Md., where he died. His remains were brought home after the war.
Sergeant-Major John M. Miller, was transferred to a Cavalry command in Louisiana—name and number of command not recollected. With this command he remained to the close of the war. 4th Corporal Reuben A. Kilby was furloughed, and never return to the Company. The cause of his delinquency has never been known. His home was in Florida, and he was furloughed to that State, and we learn joined a Cavalry command.
Private John Mayo was furloughed and returned to his home, which was in Florida. He voluntarily united with some Florida Militia, and was killed in a skirmish near Marianna Florida.
Private Uriah Slappy was discharged upon the grounds of physical disability. Whether he afterward united with any branch of the service not recollected.
Private John D. Aultman died at a hospital at Winchester, Virginia, of disease contracted in the service. Private Stephen D. Clark died in a hospital at Richmond, Virginia, of disease contracted in the service. Private Alexander Finlayson died in camp of disease contracted in the service. Corporal Theophalos Hardison died at his home in Houston county, Georgia, of disease contracted in the service. Corporal Geo. M. D. Hunt died at his home in Houston county, Georgia, of disease contracted in the service. Privates D. Hearn and O. Hearn died at their home in Houston county, Georgia, of disease contracted in the service. Private James M. Mason died at his home in Houston county, Georgia, of disease contracted in the service. Private Alexander Sullivan died from accidentally treading bare-footed on an inverted nail which pierced through his foot, producing lock-jaw. Death ensued almost instantly. Private Allen Sullivan died in camp of disease contracted in the service. Private Andrew J. Shirah died of small-pox at a field-hospital near Fredericksburg, Virginia. Sergt. Ulysses M. Gunn, of whom mention has already been made in the third Chapter, was, for meritorious conduct on the battle-field at Seven Pines, on the 31st of May, in triumphantly and gallantly bringing the colors out of that bloody battle, after Sergeant McElvain, the gallant Ensign, and all the guard except himself had been killed dead on the field, appointed Regimental Ensign, with the rank and pay of 1st Sergeant of Infantry. On the 27th of June, he carried the colors aloft into the battle of Cold Harbor, and fell severely wounded. He was borne from the field by Lieutenant Culpepper. The flesh and muscles were lacerated, and thigh and hip bones fractured for nineteen inches. His recovery was miraculous. The loss of blood was so great, he remained in a stupor for five days, not being able during that time to hold up his head without fainting. On the next day, 28th, Dr. Henry A. Mettauer, the very efficient and energetic Surgeon of our Regiment, extracted the ball. Two days afterward, on the 30th, he was sent to Richmond, and placed in the Seabrook Hospital. Here he remained in a delirious state till his brother, who had been telegraphed for, arrived and removed him to a private house on Maine street. Here he lingered between life and death till August, when he was removed home, where he remained supinely on his back till November.
Being quite young when the war commenced, and his education unfinished, he decided in the following Spring to resume his studies under his former instructor, Prof. James E. Crossland, then rector of the Male High School at Marion, Twiggs county, Georgia. He soon left this school on account of prevalence of scarlet fever, and entered the Mount Zion High School in Hancock county, Georgia, where he remained till the passage of an Act by the Confederate Congress, approved the 14th of February 1864, taking into service of a sedentary nature the maimed soldiery. Whereupon Sergeant Gunn, though yet upon his crutches, reported promptly for duty at Macon, Georgia. He was
appointed enrolling officer, and assigned duty in Dooly county, Georgia. Finding in that county 124 men due the Government service under said Act.
He consented, at their request, to lead them as Captain, and reported promptly at Macon, Georgia, with them for duty, and was mustered into service as Company "G," Fifth Regiment of Georgia Reserves.
This regiment was appointed guard of the Macon stockade, containing 1,100 Federal officers, held as prisoners of war. Here the regiment remained on duty till Stoneman’s raid, the latter part of this year. To Capt. Gunn was assigned the duty of searching Gen. Stoneman and removing the contraband articles when Stoneman was brought into Macon a prisoner. After this raid of Stoneman, the regiment was ordered to the front at Lovejoy’s Station. Soon after this, the regiment was ordered to Savannah by way of Thomasville, to meet Sherman’s invading army.
Upon the evacuation of Savannah, the regiment was withdrawn through South Carolina. It is but merited justice to Capt. Gunn to state that, during the entire campaign of his second entry into the service, he was unable to march without the aid of crutches or stick.
NOTE.—We omitted to mention at the proper time and place, that Private George W. Slappy was wounded at Sharpsburg, Maryland, on the 17th of September. And, also, that Private Alexander Gloxier was killed in that battle, as was also Private Stephen Corder. And that Sergeant Major John M. Miller was severely wounded at Mechanicsville on the 26th of June.
We will also note in conclusion a little incident which occurred on the night of the 19th of September, two days after the battle of Sharpsburg, and the night on which Lee, closely pursued by McClellan, recrossed the Potomac near Shepherdstown. Private Charles D. Anderson, Jr. being in feeble health, and unable to wade the river, and dreading to be left behind as he would inevitably fall into the hands of the enemy, Private Wendell D. Croom took him on his back and boldly waded into the river, and carried him safely across. This occurred at about three o’clock in the night. This would have forcibly reminded one of the old saying of the "kitten toting the old cat", as both men at that time, would not, if weighed together, have weighed two hundred pounds. The river at this point, at low water, was about one hundred yards wide, and from knee to waist deep to a man of ordinary height.
THE opening of this Campaign found our Company on the right banks of the Rappahannock river, where the curtain of time dropped upon it at the closing scene of last year, sullenly confronting the enemy from the opposite banks of that river. General Joseph Hooker, who had superceded General Burnside in command of the Grand Army of the Potomac, as before stated, had employed the Winter in reorganizing and equipping the army.
He seemed to take it for granted that Lee would instantly quail and retire before this grand array of military strength of a hundred thousand strong. He therefore put it in motion on the 27th of April, moving against Richmond, overland by way of Chancellorsville.
General Lee, however, with his 50,000 men, did not retire. He gave battle
for four days, beginning on the 29th—meeting Hooker's divisions at every point of assault; and, by skillful manœuvres, made several successful assaults himself. It was now that the celebrated flanker, Gen. (Stonewall) Jackson, to whose command our Company was attached, made his famous flank movement around Hooker’s army, completely gaining his rear, and, undiscovered, got his corps in position, and on Saturday evening, first day of May, at about one hour of the sun, opened fire upon Hooker’s rear, and fought what is known as the battle of Wilderness Church. In this battle, our Company suffered the following casualties: Privates Jas. Corbett and James Lominac were, each wounded in the left hand. Private Wendell D. Croom had the little finger of his right hand broken by a fragment of exploded shell. Nightfall put an end to this conflict. The two armies bivouaced for the night, determined to renew the conflict at day-light the next morning. The ever active and indomitable (Stonewall) Jackson, in making a hasty reconnoissance of the enemy’s position during the night, lost his life. The fatal shot came by mistake from his own lines. At day-light next morning, with almost unprecedented fury upon both sides, the fight was renewed, and what is known as the battle of Chancellorsville was fought. In this bloody and never-to-be-forgotten struggle, our Company suffered the following casualties: Major Charles D. Anderson, 3rd Lieutenant Seaborn M. Hunt, Orderly Sergeant Amos W. Murray, 2nd Sergeant Isaac N. Vinson, 1st Corporal Richard H. Powell, and Private Jonnathan F. Coussens were wounded.
The result of this battle was the defeat of Gen. Hooker, and the driving back of his Grand Army, with great loss across the Rappahannock. We are now about to take leave of the Army of Northern Virginia. Shortly after this battle, Major General D. H. Hill, to whose division our Brigade had been attached at the evacuation of Yorktown, and with which we had remained up to this time, was transferred to the command of the Department of North Carolina, with his head-quarters at Kinston. We were sent with him. We arrived at Kinston in the latter part of May, and immediately entered upon the duties of this, to us, new field of operations.
We were now a sort of independent Brigade.
Our quiet was, however, soon disturbed. Lee’s grand raid into Pennsylvania, had, to some extent, left Richmond uncovered. This was taken advantage of by the Federals; and a Cavalry expedition fitted out, headed by Kilpatrick and Dalghren. The object was, the release of the Federal prisoners, and leave them to burn the city, and kill the Confederate President and Cabinet. The strength of this expedition not being fully known, caused great alarm and anxiety for the safety of Richmond. We were at once ordered to Richmond to meet this expedition, and parry the threatened blow now aimed at the Confederate Capitol. We left Kinston on the 4th of July and arrived at Richmond on the 6th. In the meantime, and before our arrival at Richmond, the expedition had been defeated by some Virginia Militia and citizens, and Dalghren, one of its leaders, killed. The expedition made its escape down the Peninsula.
During the early part of this year, a powerful armada had been fitted out from the Northern ports under the direction and command of General Seymour and Com. Farragut. The object was, the capture of Charleston and reduction of Fort Sumter. We were now ordered to Charleston to meet and repel this threatened invasion.
We reached Charleston about the 15th of July, and took quarters on James Island. The first duty assigned us in this new field, was the chastisement on the 16th of some colored troops which held possession of the Western end of the Island.
The result was, these sable colored gentlemen were handsomely thrashed and driven off the Island. The next duty assigned us was the garrisoning, for four days, of Battery Wagner, on Morris Island, commencing on the 21st. During these four days the enemy’s whole floating strength was brought to bear upon this fort.
This was the most terrible scrape that we had gotten into during the war—bad weather, bad fare, bad duty, and bad everything. We were so fortunate, however, as to have but one casualty: Private Elias Adams was killed by a shell at Cumming’s Point, on the Eastern end of the Island.
The remainder of this year was employed successively and by detail in garrisoning the different points of defence of the approaches to the port of entry to the harbor of Charleston.
During one of these periods of service in Fort Sumter, Private John S. Price was badly burned by the accidental explosion of one of the powder-magazines, he being on duty at the time at the entrance to the magazine. Late in the winter all active operations ceased on both sides, except the continual bombardment of Fort Sumter, and we went into winter-quarters.
Here the curtain of time fell upon the closing scene of this year.
WE will now note the changes which occurred in the membership of the Company during this year, together with the names of those who died of disease contracted in the service.
Major Charles D. Anderson was promoted Lieutenant-Colonel to fill the vacancy made by the resignation of Lieutenant-Colonel Wilde C. Cleveland, immediately after the battle at Chancellorsville, on the 2nd of May. He was also elected, in the Fall of the year, by an overwhelming majority over all opposition, to represent Houston county in the Georgia Legislature. As we are now about to part with this distinguished citizen and soldier, we deem it but merited justice to him, as the first head of the Company, that we say in this connexion, a few words in his behalf, and trace him through the war. Upon leaving the army to take his seat in the Legislature, not being entirely well of the wounds received in battle at Chancellorsville on the 2nd of May, he was recommended by the Surgeon of our Regiment, to procure a position of light duty. Accordingly after the adjournment of the Legislature, he applied to Commissary Gen. Northrop, who ordered him to report to Capt. A. M. Allen, of Columbus, who had charge of purchasing commissaries. This officer assigned him to the Department of Southern Georgia to purchase corn, bacon, &c. Col. Anderson also held, at this time, a commission as Aid-de-camp to Governor Brown with the rank of Colonel.
He had but just entered upon the duties assigned him by Capt. Allen, when he was ordered to Atlanta to assist in organizing the militia.
He left the purchasing-supply business in the hands of carefully selected sub-agents, and repaired at once to Atlanta, where he was engaged for a while in organizing the Militia, and placing them upon a war-footing.
Being a staff officer, he was not entitled to command; but, by the consent and request of all the line officers, took command of the first regiment formed. He now sent up his resignation to the War-Department resigning
as Lieutenant-Colonel of the 6th Regiment, Georgia Volunteers, which was accepted. In a few days, Governor Brown turned over the Militia upon certain conditions to the Confederate Authorities, and thereby the Militia became to a certain extent Confederate troops, and were ordered by General Joseph E. Johnston to the left of his line on Pea Ridge. Hence Colonel Anderson is again in the army as a Confederate soldier. The first day after taking this position, Colonel Anderson's Regiment was engaged in the skirmish at Pea Ridge. After the skirmish at Pea Ridge, Johnston’s army fell back to the west bank of the Chattahoochee River, the Militia bringing up the rear, and protecting the rear at Turner’s Ferry till the whole army crossed over under a heavy artillery fire. Upon the army arriving at Atlanta, Colonel Anderson was unanimously elected Brigadier General, and took command of the 3rd Brigade of Georgia Militia. Gen. Anderson's Brigade was engaged in the battle of Atlanta on the 29th of June, 1864, and in defending the city till it was evacuated.
When Sherman evacuated Atlanta, and advanced upon Savannah, the Militia retired before him to Macon. Sherman's army passed above Macon. The entire Georgia Militia, now under command of Major General Phillips, were ordered forward, and struck Sherman at Griswoldville, and fought the never-to-be-forgotten battle for its misconception and mismanagement upon the part of the officers who planned it. In this battle, Gen. Anderson's Brigade bore a conspicuous part. Indeed the little success that perched upon the Confederate banners in this unfortunate affair, was attributable to the coolness and precision of General Anderson and General H. K. McCay. The Brigade was engaged from two o’clock P. M. till dark, fighting against an odds of about ten to one, and lost 175 men killed and wounded. Gen’l Anderson's horse was wounded under him in two places, and the cape of his coat and his hat were perforated in several places by Federal bullets. It is said that the Militia in this engagement, behaved with the coolness and bravery of veteran soldiers. After this battle, the Militia were ordered to Savannah via Albany and Thomasville, and placed upon duty upon the extreme right of the line of defence.
In the hasty, hazardous retreat across the mouth of Savannah River, upon a hastily constructed pontoon bridge, Gen. Anderson's Brigade performed one of the most dangerous feats of the war. In order to elude the notice of the enemy, the troops were crossed during the darkness of night. Gen. Anderson’s Brigade covering the retreat, was of course the last to cross.
This occurred about three o’clock in the night. The Brigade had barely cleared the bridge, when upon the rapidly swelling influx of the tide its moorings gave way and its couplings became detached, it was almost instantly a total wreck. Had this occurred while the Brigade was on the bridge, the result must have been the drowning of the entire Brigade, as the river was wide and deep, and the weather cold. Upon the efflux of the tide the wreck floated out to sea.
When Gen. Sherman left Savannah and advanced into the Carolinas, the Militia withdrew through South Carolina into Georgia.
We must now resume the subject proper.
4th Sergeant Samuel H. Hiley was appointed Regimental Wagon-Master with the rank and pay of 1st Sergeant of Infantry.
In this position he remained to the close of the war. 5th Sergeant Bryant Vinson was promoted 4th
Sergeant to fill Hiley’s place. 3rd Sergeant Joel L. Diseker was assigned to the Ordinance Department in the Armory at Macon, Georgia, from which place, we are under the painful necessity of saying, he deserted and went to the enemy the following year, and for which crime he was promptly reduced to the ranks. This was the first and only desertion that ever occurred in our Company. 4th Sergeant Bryant Vinson was promoted 3rd Sergeant to fill the place of Diseker, detached. 1st Corporal Richard H. Powell was promoted 4th Sergeant to fill the place of Vinson, promoted. 2nd Corporal Talbot G. Hammock was promoted 5th Sergeant.
Private Henry B. Vinson was elected 1st Corporal. Private John I. Harris was elected 2nd Corporal. 3rd Corporal Reuben A. Kilby was continued 3rd Corporal. Private James F. McDonald was elected 4th Corporal. Private James Etheridge died at Richmond, Va., of disease contracted in the service. Private Elijah Etheridge died in camps of disease contracted in the service.
The dawn of this Campaign, found us where the curtain of time fell upon us at the closing scene of last year; snugly encamped on James Island, near Charleston, South Carolina, where we had, as before stated, been on duty part of the preceeding year. During the latter part of January, and early part of February, our Company was detailed to assist in garrisoning Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor for thirteen days and nights. During this period of trying service, the fort was exposed to a most terrific bombardment from the enemy’s gunboats. He brought his whole floating strength to bear upon the fort, striking it on an average with 2,000 shots every twenty-four hours, weighing from 32 to 300 pounds.
Fortunately, however, we suffered but one casualty. Private Wendell D. Croom was wounded slightly on the right hand by a fragment of exploded shell. During the month of February, an invading force was sent from the vicinity of Charleston, South Carolina, to Jacksonville, Florida, under command of General Seymour, having for its objective, the subjugation of the latter State. Upon this becoming known, our Brigade (Colquitt’s) was dispatched to meet this invading foe. We left Charleston on the 8th and arrived at Lake City, Fla. about the 15th.
We take the liberty of stopping just here to tell of the kind reception we met with at Madison C. H., Florida, at the hands of the ladies of that place. Learning that we were en route for the defence of the "Land of Flowers," and parry the threatened blow now aimed at their homes, and that we would pass through their town, they had prepared for us a sumptuous dinner of such viands as they knew would be heartily relished by hungry soldiers.
After dinner, in behalf of our command, the accomplished Bennett Stewart, of Company "G" of our Regiment, tendered the thanks of the command to the ladies for this manifestation of their appreciation of our services in their behalf. He assured them that their homes should be protected at all hazards, and the enemy driven from their State. Having arrived, as before stated, at Lake City, and having reconnoitered the enemy’s strength and position, we set out to meet him, now moving on Tallahassee from Jacksonville. We met him on the 20th, at Ocean Pond, and fought the bloody little battle which takes its name after that place.
Here, after a close hand-to-hand fight of about five hours duration, under the invincible Colquitt, as Field-Marshall of the day, a most brilliant victory was won.
The enemy, with his colored allies, was once more made to bite the dust and feel the force of Southern steel.
Nothing but the unconquerable energy of the indomitable Colquitt, and the indomitable pluck of the men he led against the enemy in this contest, saved us from utter defeat -- the odds were so great against us. Our line of battle crossed the Jacksonville and Tallahassee Railroad at right angles. We were assisted by two 32-pounder field-guns, mounted on a car, and run out from Olustee Station by an engine fully protected by a breast-work of cotton bales arranged on two intervening cars. These guns played sad havoc with the enemy’s lines. In this battle we had three separate lines of battle to contend with, two lines of colored troops in front, urged forward by a line of white troops in their rear.
About dark the enemy’s lines wavered and fled in wild confusion to Jacksonville, stopping at Baldwin, the junction of the Jacksonville and Tallahassee, and Fernandina and Cedar Keys Railroads, only long enough to destroy their munitions of war, and commissary stores.
In this battle, our Company suffered the following casualties. Privates John S. Price, William I. Shines, James Clark, William C. Gray, and John C. Davidson were wounded. The wound of Price was such as to permanently disable him from further active service during the war. Private Josiah Avera was killed. In the death of little "Si" the Company lost a noble soldier, and the country a good citizen.
We are now about to return to the Army of Northern Virginia, after an absence of about twelve months on other duty; the history of which, we have just traced. In the opening of this Campaign, the Federal Government contemplated three grand objectives:
First. A powerful army to be led against Atlanta, Georgia, by General W. T. Sherman; to which, General Joseph E. Johnston stood opposed at Dalton, Georgia.
Second. A powerful army to be led against Richmond, by Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, whose brilliant achievements in the West had won for him great eclat and distinction, and who was now raised to the rank of Lieutenant General and placed in command of the entire Federal army, with his head-quarters in Virginia. To this General Lee stood opposed at Richmond.
Third. The capture of Charleston, and subjugation of Florida, by General Seymour. To this Gen. Beauregard, in command of the department of the South, stood opposed at Charleston. This latter soon failed, as we have seen, and Gen. Seymour was withdrawn to re-enforce Grant in Virginia.
Upon the withdrawal of General Seymour’s forces from Florida and Charleston, General Beauregard, with his forces, was transferred to the South-side Department in Virginia, with his head-quarters at Petersburg. We left Florida on the 2nd of May, and arrived at Petersburg the 9th.
About this time, the enemy succeeded in establishing his lines between Petersburg and Drewry’s Bluff. General Beauregard, who happened at the time to be in Petersburg, was thus cut off from the main body of his forces, which was at or near Drewry’s Bluff. (The enemy’s lines here referred to, consisted only of a brigade of cavalry flankers, extended on the enemy’s left). We, assisted, by the
5th North Carolina Cavalry, and the Crescent City Artillery, escorted Beauregard through these lines on the night of the 11th. We were twice during the night aligned for battle, but the enemy declined, and the battles did not ensue. On the 16th was fought the battle of Drewry’s Bluff. In this battle, General Benjamin F. Butler was in command on the Federal side with an army of 30,000, while Beauregard had not exceeding 15,000 all told. The enemy’s line of battle was nearly in the form of a semi-circle, its right resting on the night banks of the James River, a few miles below Drewry’s Bluff. The assault was made by Beauregard at daybreak on the morning of the 16th on the enemy’s extreme right. A South Carolina brigade made the assault, but was repulsed. A Tennessee brigade was then ordered to the assault, which was, in like manner, repulsed and set back. At this critical juncture, our Brigade, which was held in reserve, was ordered forward. We raised a hideous yell and rushed to the charge with our usual bravery and impetuosity. The enemy, at once, recognized us as Colquitt’s "Tigers"—a name by which we were known among the Federal troops.
We moved with impetuosity, and succeeding in turning the enemy’s right without firing a gun. The enemy, however, after retreating about a half mile, rallied and gave us battle. We soon routed them again, turning them so completely around, were coming up in the rear of their line of battle. Becoming panic-stricken at our gaining their rear, the entire line fled in wild confusion. Our victory was complete. The enemy was whipped and driven back upon Bermuda Hundreds. In this battle, we suffered the following casualties: 5th Sergeant Talbot G. Hammock was killed. Capt. Jas. M. Culpepper, 4th Sergt. Richard H. Powell, 5th Corporal Jas. F. McDonald; Privates Wendell D. Croom, and John J. McDonald were wounded.
On the morning after the battle, our Brigade was formed into a hollow square, when General Beauregard from the center, mounted on a splendid charger, made us a speech, in which he paid us a high compliment, assuring us, that to us was due the honor of the brilliant achievement won in the previous day’s action. Immediately after this battle, General Beauregard organized his little army into divisions. Major Gen. Robert F. Hoke, a young officer of great moral worth and distinguished ability, was assigned to the command of the division to which our Brigade was attached.
Shortly after the battle of Drewry’s Bluff, General Butler withdrew from the South-side Department, crossed the James River, and formed a Junction with Grant, taking position on his right. This powerful re-enforcement to General Grant, threatened a crushing blow to General Lee at Cold Harbor, and the probable fall of Richmond from that point. Gen. Beauregard now hastened with all possible speed, to aid Gen. Lee at Cold Harbor, the threatened point of attack. We crossed the James River on the morning of the 1st of June, and reached Cold Harbor late in the evening of the same day, encountering the enemy’s vanguard and driving it back. On the 3rd the second great battle of Cold Harbor was fought. It commenced at day-light, and raged with terrific fury till the enemy was repulsed. It will be seen by reference to the first battle of Cold Harbor on the 27th of June 1862, that it was the most fatal battle our Company had ever been in. In it we had fifteen killed and fifteen wounded. This was the most fortunate battle we had ever been in, if we take into consideration the magnitude of the battle, and the great disparity of numbers.
Here our Regiment, carrying into action not exceeding two hundred guns, and assisted by two pieces of artillery, so arranged as to enfilade the enemy’s lines from right to left with grape and canister, confronted the 8th New York artillery regiment, which had just been converted into an infantry regiment and numbered 1,850. We killed, wounded, and captured 1,150 of them. Our Company had two casualties, Private William N. Harris was killed, and Private Thos. A. Lowe was wounded. In this battle, if Grant was not defeated, he was so completely baffled that he abandoned all hope of success upon his chosen line of approach to Richmond, and withdrew his army down the James River to Harrison’s Landing, and City Point, as McClellan had done two years before. From these places he soon closely invested Richmond and Petersburg, especially the latter.
His first step was to take advantage of Beauregard’s absence from the South-side Department, and send Butler back across the James to capture Petersburg. (In this he very nearly succeeded.) Upon this becoming known, FBeauregard hastened with all possible speed, to check-mate Butler’s movements. For this purpose, our Division left Cold Harbor on the 12th of June, and arrived at Petersburg at three o’clock on the night of the 14th. Having been delayed on the way, awaiting advices from Beauregard in reference to Butler’s movements. Upon arriving at Petersburg, we learned that a squad of Federal Cavalry had the evening before, paraded through the streets, but being more upon a reconnoissance than anything else, they made no halt. At day-light next morning, we found the Federals in possession of the strong-holds and fortifications which had been erected for the defence of Petersburg.
Beauregard made a desperate effort to dislodge them, but failed. We had now to go to work and re-fortify against the enemy. This effort was made on the 16th, and is known as the battle of Petersburg. It commenced at day-light with heavy skirmishing on both sides, which last till about sun-set, when the enemy made a desperate charge upon our hastily erected works. He was repulsed with great slaughter. In this battle, Private William S. Davis, of our Company, was killed. We can never forget the horrible death of this soldier. Each of his jaw-bones was broken about mid-way, his chin and tongue were completely taken off at the break, by the bullet. In this condition he lived about three days, seemingly suffering all the pangs and miseries of a hundred horrible deaths. Heavy skirmishing all along our lines was an every-day-occurrence, as well as any amount of sharp-shooting, and heavy shelling from both sides, from now till the last of September. Private John W. Murray, of our Company was killed in a sharp-shooting duel in July--day of month not recollected. In the mean time, however, three desperate assaults were made on our entire lines, all of which were repulsed, and three regular battles fought between detachments of the two armies, without any decisive result on either side. The battle of Deep Bottom, was fought on the 10th of August. In this our command took no active part, not being present. The battle of Weldon Railroad was fought on the 18th and 19th of August. This was the battle in which our Company plucked the most brilliant feather for the cap of its history. In this we captured Brigadier General Rutherford B. Hayes, now President of the United States, with Lieutenant Brady, one of his Aide-de-camp.
They surrendered themselves, their swords, side-arms, and horses to 4th Sergeant Richard H. Powell, and were by him conducted to General Colquitt. Major James M. Culpepper, in command of the Regiment, then made a bold sortie at the head of about fifty men, and succeeded in capturing Hayes’ entire brigade; but failed to bring them off as prisoners. They soon discovered the weakness of their captors, and the blunder they had made in surrendering, and endeavored to turn the scale by capturing Culpepper. He succeeded, however, in effecting his escape with his men and a few prisoners, and in bringing off, with his own hands, three stands of colors, and the sword of the officer next in command after the surrender of Hayes.
In this battle, Private Lott Self was killed, and Private William C. Harrison was taken prisoner. He was not exchanged, but parolled after the surrender. On the 4th of September, Sergt. Richard H. Powell lost his right leg. A mortar shell from the enemy’s lines exploded between his feet breaking his leg just below the knee. It had to be amputated. This permanently disabled him from further active service during the war. This gallant soldier was, as he justly deserved, several times recommended for promotion, but from some unexplained cause, he never received it. On the 30th of September, was fought the battle of Fort Harrison. In this battle our Company lost two noble soldiers: 3rd Sergt. Bryant Vinson, and James B. Odom were killed. About this time, the two armies assumed something of a growling mood, sullenly confronting each other behind their strong entrenchments. The heavy shelling, and active sharpshooting, to some extent, subsided. A powerful armada had this year been fitted out by the Federals, under the leadership of Admiral Porter, and General Terry, having for its object, the reduction of Fort Fisher, the Malakoff of the Confederacy, and the capture of Wilmington, N. C. So soon as the object of this powerful land and naval force became fully known to the Confederate authorities at Richmond, our Division was despatched to Wilmington to assist in the defence of that beleaguered city. We left Petersburg about the middle of December, and in due time, arrived at Wilmington, and took position at Sugar Loaf. We were soon brought into close proximity with the enemy, now exerting every effort to reduce Fort Fisher, and gain the rear of the city of Wilmington. In the terrible struggle which now ensued around Fort Fisher, Private William S. Haddock was wounded. This struggle was, to us, the closing scene of this year, and here the curtain of time dropped.
WE will now note the changes that occurred in the membership of the Company during this year, together with the names of those who died of disease contracted in the service.
Capt. James M. Culpepper was promoted to the rank of Major, to wear the star of the gallant Major William M. Arnold, killed in an artillery duel in August. This promotion was made alone upon true merit, as he was at the time, ranked by several seniors in the Regiment. The writer can, without disparagement to any one, safely bear testimony to the justice of this promotion.
There was no man at the time in the Regiment, more deserving or more entitled than was Captain Culpepper. Having learned in the discharge of his duties, to obey his superiors, he was very well prepared to take command. 1st
Lieutenant Jonnathan D. Cowart was promoted Captain, to fill the vacancy made by Culpepper’s promotion. 2nd Lieutenant Jefferson M. Gray was promoted 1st Lieutenant to fill the vacancy made by Cowart’s promotion. 3rd Lieutenant Seaborn M. Hunt was promoted 2nd Lieutenant to fill the vacancy made by Gray's promotion, and Amos W. Murray, the very faithful, efficient, and worthy Orderly Sergeant, was elected, as he justly deserved to be, 3rd Lieutenant, to fill the vacancy made by Hunt’s promotion. This was another step in the right direction. Sergeant Murray was one of the original members of the Company, had served faithfully, and had proven himself, on all occasions, fully equal to every task that had been laid upon him.
2nd Sergeant Isaac N. Vinson was promoted Orderly Sergeant, to fill the vacancy made by Murray’s election to the 3rd Lieutenancy. 3rd Sergeant Bryant Vinson was promoted 2nd Sergeant to fill the vacancy made by Vinson’s promotion. 4th Sergeant Richard H. Powell was promoted 3rd Sergeant to fill the vacancy made by Vinson’s promotion. 5th Sergeant Talbot G. Hammock was promoted 4th Sergeant to fill the vacancy made by Powell’s promotion. 1st Corporal Henry B. Vinson was Promoted 5th Sergeant to fill the vacancy made by Hammock’s promotion. 2nd Corporal John I Harris was promoted 1st Corporal, to fill the vacancy made by Vinson’s promotion. 3rd Corporal Reuben A. Kilby was continued, and 4th Corporal James F. McDonald was promoted 2nd Corporal to fill the vacancy made by Harris’ promotion, and Private William T. Collins was elected 4th Corporal, to fill the vacancy made by McDonald’s promotion.
Private Jonnathan F. Coussins was promoted to the position of Regimental Ensign, with the rank and pay of 1st Lieutenant of Infantry. He held this position to the close of the war; carrying the colors aloft in the last battle east of the Mississippi River.
This was another promotion well merited. There was no man in the Regiment more deserving, or more justly entitled. Private Benjamin L. Powell died 24th of June, of consumption, supposed to have been contracted in the service, on account of long exposure to the rigors of winter, incident to Virginia climate.
NOTE.—We omitted to mention at the proper time and place, that Private William C. Gray was killed by a Federal sharp-shooter on the 6th of July, and, also, that Private W. J. Davidson was killed at Ocean Pond on the 20th of February.
JANUARY 1st of this year, with its gloomy forebodings, found our Company with heavy hearts and almost desponding spirits at Sugar-Loaf near Wilmington, N. C., whither it had, as before stated, been ordered in Dec’r. of the preceding year. This year opened gloomily upon the Confederates every where. Hemmed in on all sides, with their country over-run by the enemy, and their stock and provisions well nigh exhausted, and their paper medium very far below par, rendered the situation anything but pleasant.
Fort Fisher, the Malakoff of the Confederacy, the only channel through which the Confederates had been able to communicate during the war with the out-side world, fell on the 15th of January. This completely shut them in. In the early part of January, Col. John T. Lofton was accidentally killed by a random
shot from one of the enemy’s gun-boats. We cannot part with this distinguished citizen and soldier without a word of comment. He was a native of Elbert County, Georgia. He was comparatively a young man; was a lawyer by profession; was, at the beginning of the war, engaged in the practice of his profession at Lexington, Oglethorpe County, Georgia; and, as Captain, led out the "Gilmore Blues" from that county. Rich in nature’s endowments, with a thoroughly cultivated mind, he embodied all the components that make up the perfect man. He was almost idolized by the entire Regiment. The death of no man that ever belonged to the 6th Georgia, Regiment caused more regret than that of Col. John T. Lofton.
Soon after the fall of Fort Fisher, the Confederates evacuated Wilmington; and, closely pursued by Generals Schofield and Terry, retired by a land route up the North-East River to South Wilmington; thence to Kinston via Rock-Fish and Kenanville. At Kinston we were over-taken by our pursuers, when a fierce battle of two days duration, beginning on the 8th of March, ensued. In this battle our Company suffered the following casualties. Major J. M. Culpepper was slightly wounded. Privates John C. Davidson, John F. Renfroe, and Robert W. Johnson were wounded. This battle completely set our pursuers back for several days. We again retired in the direction of Fayetteville to Goldsboro. Here we formed a junction with the remnant of Hood’s shattered army, and the remnants of some other shattered armies, including the forces that had been withdrawn from around Charleston and Wilmington, including also our own Division, amounting in all to about 35,000, all under command of General Joseph E. Johnston, who had in the very last extremity, been again placed in command. Our Division was attached to General Hardee’s Corps. This was the only force that could now be brought to face Sherman’s greatly augmented legions in their grand, almost unmolested march through Georgia and the Carolinas to join Grant in Virginia. We moved forward, and on the 16th of March met Sherman at Averasboro, near Fayetteville. Here a bloody encounter ensued. In this our Company took no part. We again met Sherman at Bentonville on the 19th, and fought the last battle in which we were ever engaged.
We were now like the Spartan band at Thermopylae, brought to our last death grapple with the monster army of victory. In this, the already ruinously depleted ranks of our Company, were again called upon to do sacrifice upon the altar of their country. Several of our brave boys here fell to rise no more. Among them was the lamented Captain Jonnathan D. Cowart. Just as he was leaping over the enemy’s breast-works, in the last gallant charge, the fatal ball pierced his noble heart. Had we the time and space, and were our humble pen able to do the subject justice, we would eulogize this noble man at some length; but a very few words must suffice. Capt. Cowart was a native of Macon county, N. C. He had removed to Houston county, Ga., a few years previous to the breaking out of the war, and was at the time, engaged in a steam saw-mill and lumber business, and was one of the first to enroll his name as a private in our Company.
He was full six feet in height, bearing a noble mien and fine personal appearance. He was elected 3rd Lieutenant in 1861. He was severely wounded at Sharpsburg on the 17th of September, 1862. He was a man for whom education had done but little being scarcely able to write a legible hand, or make
simple calculations in the ordinary business of life. But this deficiency was fully atoned for in the nobleness of his nature. His only words of command in battle were, "forward boys." This was usually given in a low, easy tone of voice; but the expression of his countenance told unmistakably plain that Cowart was terribly in earnest. In battle he usually carried his hat in his left hand and his drawn sword in his right.
As a soldier, he did not take or shift responsibilities; nor would he apologize for the delinquency of any man. He discharged every known duty to the strictest letter, and required the same thing at the hands of all with whom he had to deal. But we must bid a long, long farewell to our esteemed friend and brother soldier, Captain Jonnathan D. Cowart, and resume the subject 1st Corporal John I. Harris; Privates George W. Hampton, James M. Johns, James M. Shines, and Samuel A. Fields were killed. 3rd Lieutenant Amos W. Murray, 1st Lieutenant Jonnathan F. Coussins, Privates William I. Shines, and Ebeneezer W. Turner were wounded. On the 23rd, Sherman reached Goldsboro’, where he was largely re-enforced by Generals Schofield and Terry. Johnston withdrew to Raliegh. So matters stood for some time. The end was now rapidly approaching. The tragic finale was at hand. We now look for a moment to the Army of Northern Virginia.
On the 1st of April, Lee’s right was turned, and the battle of Five Oaks was fought. On the 2nd, Grant succeeded in making an irreparable breach in Lee’s general line of defence. Lee was now compelled to retire and give up Richmond at last. On the 9th of April, at Appomattox C. H., the sword of Lee was surrendered under very liberal terms of capitulation. Grant refused to take the sword, thus showing the greatest magnanimity to his distinguished competitor.
President Davis and his Cabinet escaped from Richmond on the night of the
2nd. In consultation with Generals Johnston and Beauregard at Greensboro,
North Carolina, they authorized General Johnson to make such terms with
General Sherman, as he might be able to do, for a termination of the war, and
general pacification. The result of this was what was known as the
"Sherman—Johnson Convention," which was formally agreed to, and
signed by them, on the 18th of April.*
I. The contending armies now in the field to maintain their status quo until notice is given by the Commanding General of either one to its opponent, and reasonable time, say forty-eight hours, allowed.
II. The Confederate armies now in existence to be disbanded and conducted to the several State Capitals, there to deposit their arms and public property in the State Arsenal, and each officer and man to execute and file an agreement to cease from acts of war, and abide the action of both State and Federal authorities. The number of arms and munitions of war to be reported to the Chief of Ordinance at Washington City, subject to the future action of the Congress of the United States, and, in the meantime, to be used solely to maintain peace within the borders of the States respectively.
III. The recognition, by the Executive of the United States, of the several State Governments on their officers and Legislatures taking the oath prescribed by the Constitution of the United States; and where conflicting State Governments have resulted from the war, the legitimacy of all shall be submitted to the Supreme Court of the United States.
IV. The re-establishment of all Federal Courts in the several states, with powers as defined by the Constitution and laws of Congress.
V. The people and inhabitants of all the States to be guaranteed, so far as the Executive can, their political rights and franchises, as well as their rights of person and property, as defined by the Constitution of the United States and the States respectively.
VI. The Executive authority of the Government of the United States not to disturb any of the people by reason of the late war, so long as they live in peace and quiet, abstain from acts of armed hostility, and obey laws in existence at the place of their residence.
VII. In general terms, it is announced that the war is to cease; a general amnesty, so far as the Executive power of the United States can command, on condition of the disbandment of the Confederate armies, the distribution of arms, and resumption of peaceful pursuits by officers and men hitherto composing the said armies. Not being fully empowered by our respective principals to fulfill these terms, we individually and officially pledge ourselves to promptly obtain necessary authority, and to carry out the above programme.
W. T. SHERMAN,
Commanding the Army of the United States in North Carolina.
JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON,
Commanding Confederate States Army in North Carolina.]
Here let it be said to the credit of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, that in this Convention, he displayed quite as much diplomacy and statesmanship as he had hitherto displayed generalship in all of the well directed campaigns in which he had been chief in command. While negotiations were going on between these two distinguished Generals, and four days before the Convention was signed, on the night of the 14th of April, President Lincoln was assassinated at Ford’s Theatre, in Washington City, by Wilkes Booth. By the death of president Lincoln, the Presidency devolved upon Mr. Andrew Johnson, the Vice-President. From the great excitement caused by this horrible act, or from some other unexplained cause, President Johnson disapproved the Sherman-Johnston Convention, and ordered Sherman to resume the aggressive. Upon Gen. Sherman notifying Gen. Johnston of this, he withdraw his army to Greensboro. On the 26th of April, he entered into a capitulation with Sherman, by which he surrendered all the Confederate forces under his command, upon terms similar to the terms agreed upon between Lee and Grant. All the soldiers then present, gave and subscribed to the following parole of honor:
GREENSBORO’, NORTH CAROLINA,
In accordance with the terms of Military Convention, entered into on the 26th day of April, 1865, between General Joseph E. Johnston, Commanding the Confederate Army, and Major-General W. T. Sherman, Commanding the United States Army in North Carolina, Wendell D. Croom, Private in Company "C," 6th Georgia Troops, has given his solemn obligation not to take up arms against the Government of the United States,
until properly released from this obligation; and is permitted to return to his home, not to be disturbed by the United States Authorities, so long as he observe this obligation, and obey the laws in force where he may reside.
L. M. LETCHER, Major, U. S. A.
J. M. CULPEPPER, Major, C. S. A.
Gen. Johnston now issued a patriotic Farewell Address to his troops, in which he deeply sympathized with them in the misfortunes of the war; but highly complimented them for the valor and patriotism they had displayed for a little upward of four years in defence of the now, forever "lost cause." We would gladly re-produce this Address; but we have it not in our possession. Upon it becoming known to our Company that Johnston had surrendered to Sherman, several of the members left for their homes. Those who remained to be paroled and disbanded in conformity with the terms of surrender, and sheathe their swords and pile their guns upon the last stack made east of the Mississippi River, were, Maj. Jas. M. Culpepper in command of the Regiment, 2nd. Lieutenant Seaborne M. Hunt; 4th Cop’l. William T. Collins; Privates Wendell D. Croom, William E. Giles, Jas. M. Graves, William M. Haslam, John J. McDonald and Leonidas P. Sledge. The terms of surrender having been fully complied with, and General Sherman having issued us ten day’s rations, we left for our homes, on the 8th of May, marching to Washington, Wilkes county Ga., thence by rail to our homes, arriving about the 19th. We leave the reader to imagine the feelings of these war-worn soldiers upon once more reaching their homes and embracing the loved ones from which they had so long been absent.
NOTE.—The war having closed out early in the year, no changes occurred in the membership of the Company, nor were there any deaths from disease contracted in the service. We will state, however, that had the war gone on, Maj. J. M. Culpepper would have been promoted Lieutenant-Colonel, to fill the vacancy made by the promotion of Lieutenant-Col. Samuel A. Harris to the Colonelcy, after the death of Col. John T. Lofton, killed in January. 1st Lieut. Jefferson M. Gray would have been promoted Captain to fill the vacancy of Captain Jonnathan D. Cowart, killed at Bentonville on the 19th of March. 2nd Lieut. Seaborn M. Hunt would have been promoted 1st. Lieutenant, to fill the vacancy made by Gray’s promotion. 3rd Lieut. Amos W. Murray would have been promoted 2nd. Lieut. to fill the vacancy made by Hunt’s promotion. Leaving the 3rd Lieutenancy vacant, to be filled by election. 5th Sergt. Henry B. Vinson would have been promoted 2nd Sergeant. 2nd Sergt. Bryant Vinson having been killed in battle at Fort Harrison on the 30th of Sept. 1864, and 3rd. Sergeant Richard H. Powell having been retired on account of permanent disability from a wound received on the 7th of September 1864, and 4th Sergt. Talbot G. Hammock having been killed in battle at Drewry’s Bluff on the 16th of May, 1864. Leaving vacancies for 3rd, 4th and 5th Sergeants to be filled by election. 2nd. Corp’l. Jas. F. McDonald would have been promoted 1st. Corporal, to fill the vacancy made by death of 1st. Corp’l. John I. Harris, killed in battle at Bentonville on the 19th of March. 4th Corp’l. William T. Collins would have been promoted 2nd. Corp'l., to fill the vacancy made by McDonald’s promotion. Leaving vacancies for 4th and 5th Corporals to be filled by election.
THE news of the surrender of the sword of General Robert E. Lee at Appomattox C. H., on the 9th of April, 1865, sounded like a fire-bell at night. It flashed over the country with electric speed, spreading gloom and despondency in every pathway behind it; atleast, so far as the result of the war is concerned, which was no longer a matter of conjecture, but a fixed matter-of-fact, brought fully within the comprehension of all. The buoyant hope that had so long nerved the Southern people, and incited them to action, and once so valiantly displayed their valor and patriotism with a zeal unparallelled in the history of the human race, now broken, gave place to despair and despondency. The cause which they had so long defended with a zeal and determination unknown to any people of modern times, had now, without the intervention of a negotiating umpire, to be abandoned and forever lost; as the sword, the great arbiter in the contest had decided against them. Gen. Joseph E Johnston, upon whom devolved the responsible duty of arranging terms for the termination of the war, and general pacification, after the exit of the Confederate Chief Magistrate from his high post of duty on the night of the 2nd of April, 1865 after the irreparable breech had been made in Lee’s line of defence, as before stated, opened a truce with General Sherman. This resulted in what is known at the time as the "Sherman-Johnston Convention." For the very able manner in which this distinguished soldier and diplomatist discharged the duties of his high and responsible trust, the reader is referred to the Memorandum of Agreement arranged and signed in that Convention by these two distinguished men, a copy of which may be found near the conclusion of the preceding chapter. But unfortunately for the Southern people, the Sherman-Johnston Convention was disapproved by Andrew Johnson, the newly installed President, and Sherman ordered to resume the aggressive.
This completely disrobed General Johnston, and left him without an alternative. Knowing, as he did, that further resistance would be worse than madness, and a wicked effusion of blood, he entered into a capitulation with General Sherman, by which he surrendered all the troops under his command, upon terms similar to those agreed upon between Lee and Grant. The course of Johnston was followed in quick succession by all the Confederate commanders everywhere. The last surrender was that of General E. Kirby Smith, in the trans-Mississippi Department, on the 26th of May, 1865—just one month subsequent to the date of the surrender of Johnston.
Three days after this, on the 29th, President Johnson announced the facts by proclamation, with offer of amnesty, upon certain conditions, to all who had participated in the conflict on the Confederate side, except fourteen designated classes.
Thus ended the lamentable and ever-to-be-regretted conflict of a little upwards of four years duration between the States of the Federal Union. It was the most lamentable, as well as the greatest of modern wars, if not the greatest in some respects "known in the history of the human race." It lasted a little upward of four years, as we have seen, with numerous sanguinary exploits on both sides; a few, only, of which, are barely glanced at in this brief Compendium; but many of which will live in memory, and be perpetuated as story and legends for ages to come. It was waged by the Federals with the sole object, as they declared of "maintaining and perpetuating the Federal Union under the Constitution;" while by the Confederates, it was waged as they declared "with the great object of maintaining the inestimable Sovereign right of local-self-government on the part of the people of the several States."
Very early in the war, however, the institution of Domestic African Slavery, as it then existed in the Southern, or seceded States, became involved as a vital question in the conflict; and was, as was alleged by the emancipationists, abolished in all the States, as a necessity consequent upon the progress of the war.
This scheme of emancipation was commenced by Federal Executive Proclamation, on the 22nd of September, 1862, and afterward ratified and confirmed by the action of the sword under military domination, and eventuated in one of the accepted results of the war on both sides.
In conclusion, we will only add the following, which we adduce from authority every way reliable.
The aggregate Federal population at the commencement of the war, was above twenty-two millions; that of the Confederates was less than ten, near four millions of these being negro slaves, and constituting no part of their arms-bearing population. The Federals, first and last during the war, brought two million six hundred thousand men into the service; while the Confederates, all told, in like manner, had but a little over six hundred thousand men in the service. The prosecution of the war created an enormous debt on both sides, the aggregate of money thus expended, including the loss and destruction of property on both sides, amounted upon a reasonable estimatie to eight thousand millions of dollars—a sum fully equal to three-fourths of the assessed value of the taxable property of all the States together when it commenced. The entire loss on both sides, including those who were permanently disabled, as well as those killed in battle, and who died from wounds received and diseases contracted in the service, amounted upon a reasonable estimate "to the stupendous aggregate of one million of men," a sum equal to one thirty-eighth part of the entire white population of the United States at the commencement of the war.
In the economy of arrangement in the progress of this brief compendium, only the most important data connected with the history of the Company, could be taken into the account. Many personal incidents and much general matter, that would have been both pleasing and interesting, have been necessarily excluded. To have incorporated which, would have been to run the hazard of swelling the volume of the work to an extravagant and inconvenient size.
WE have shown from the preceding pages, that our Company, numbered, first and last, during the war, 164 men, rank and file. Having thus been recruited by 80 recruits, which is proof prima facie of the high repute in which the Company was held. And that the Company was in twenty-nine regular battles, besides several skirmishes, and a great deal of heavy and dangerous garrison and siege duty. Several of these battles were the most heroic and terrific of any in the history of the war; if not the most so of any recorded in the whole range of modern history. Among these we may mention the battles of Seven Pines, 31st of May, 1862, Cold Harbor, 27th of June, 1862; Sharpsburg, 17th of September 1862; and Chancellorsville, 2nd of May, 1863. In these battles the relative proportions of the numbers engaged on the respective sides, were, at Seven Pines, 120,000 on the Federal side, against 45,000 on the Confederate side, or as two and two-thirds to one. At Cold Harbor, 120,000 on the Federal side, against 60,000 on the Confederate side, or as two to one. At Sharpsburg, 120,000 on the Federal side against 60,000 on the Confederate side, or as two to one. At Chancellorsville, 132,000 on the Federal side, against 50,000 on the Confederate side, or as two and sixteen twenty-fifths to one. The relative proportions of the other battles were similar. We were never engaged in a battle in which the numbers engaged on the respective sides were proportionately equal.
We have also further shown that twenty of our number were discharged upon the grounds of physical disability. Eighteen of these re-entered the service with other commands. Three were discharged upon a writ of Habeas Corpus. These all upon arriving at full age, re-entered the service with other commands. Six of the commissioned staff resigned from various causes. Five of these re-entered the service with other commands. Four were transferred to other commands. Two were placed upon detached service. Three only, were taken prisoners during the war, and but one ever deserted during the war. Forty-seven were wounded. Of these, nine were wounded twice; four were wounded three times; and four were wounded four times. And that four were, to some extent, permanently disabled for life. Forty-five were killed in battle, and twenty-five died of disease contracted in the service; leaving alive at the close of the war, ninety four. Of these, eight have died and been killed, viz:
Private William Crouch, killed in a personal recounter at Oglethorpe, Ga., in 1876. Lieut. Jonnathan F. Coussins was accidentally killed in Kentucky—date not recollected. He was at the time, in the employ of a railroad Company, as fireman. The engine ran off the track, killing him and the engineer instantly. Orderly Sergeant William W. Carnes, died at his home in Milledgeville, Ga., in 1867. Privates James H. Corbitt, Henry C. Sawyer, John W. Gatling, James M. Bynum, Charles D. Anderson, Jr., and Leavin Vinson, all died at their homes in Houston county, Georgia, leaving at the date of this writing, 86 survivors, located and engaged as follows:
Gen. Charles D. Anderson, resides at Fort Valley, Houston county, Ga.; engaged in a Ware-House and Commission business in the city of Macon. Capt. Chas. H. Richardson resides at Byron, Houston county, Ga., engaged in the practice of physic, and in agricultural pursuits. Lieutenant Bartlett M. Bateman resides in Houston county, Ga.,
engaged in agricultural pursuits. Lieut. Seaborne S. Mimms resides in Thomas county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Lieut. William I. Greene resides at Fort Valley, Houston county, Ga., engaged in the practice of physic, and in the ministry. Maj. J. M. Culpepper resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Sergeant Geo. W. Bateman resides in Washington county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Lieut. Amos W. Murray resides at Fort Valley, Houston county, Ga., engaged in mercantile pursuits. Serg’t. Isaac N. Vinson resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Sergt. Joel L. Diseker resides in South Carolina, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Corporal Reuben A. Kilby resides in Florida, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Green Avera resides at Smithville, Lee county, Ga., engaged in mercantile pursuits. Private Louis F. Anderson resides in Atlanta, Ga., employed in the editorial department of a newspaper. Lieut. Emanuel Aultman resides at Fort Valley, Ga., engaged in mercantile, and agricultural pursuits. Private Solomon Aultman resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Matthew G. Avera resides in Calhoun county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Henry T. Brookins resides in Baldwin county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Thos. Butler resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged as a ditcher. Private Leonidas W. Choidoine resides in Florida, engaged in mercantile pursuits. Corp’l. William T. Collins resides in Texas, planter. Corp’l. George W. Cheeves resides at Albany, Ga., engaged in teaching school. Private Jas. Clark resides in Taylor county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Wendell D. Croom resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Edward Dinkins resides in Bibb county, Ga., (occupation unknown). Private John R. Dukes resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William B. Dukes resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Allen Evans resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Chas. R. Fogg’s whereabouts unknown, is a native of Boston, Mass., and is a jeweler by profession. Private Samuel Gassett resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William E. Giles resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Jas. M. Graves resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Chas. G. Gray resides at Fort Valley, Houston county, Ga., engaged in mercantile pursuits. Lieut. Jefferson M. Gray resides at Fort Valley, Houston county, Ga., engaged in mercantile pursuits. Capt. Ulysses M. Gunn resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits, and in the practice of the law. Private J. N. Hightower resides in Upson county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private David H. Hiley resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William M. Haslam resides in Pulaski county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits, and in the practice of physic. Privates William C. Harrison and Sullivan R. Harrison reside in Crawford county, Ga., severally engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private John C. Davidson resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Lieut. Seaborne M. Hunt resides at Warwick, Worth county, Ga., engaged in agricultural, and in mercantile pursuits. Serg’t. Henry B. Vinson, and Privates Thos. A. Lowe, and Daniel B. Hutto reside in Texas, severally engaged in agricultural pursuits.
Private Drewry M. Jackson resides in Pike county, Ala., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Robt. W. Jackson resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private James Lominac resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William H. H. Lowe resides in Macon county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Privates Chas. McDonald and William M. McDonald reside in Houston county, Ga., engaged severally in agricultural pursuits. Corp’l. Jas. F. McDonald resides in Dooly county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private John J. McDonald resides in South Carolina, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William F. McGehee resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. The whereabouts and occupation of Serg’t. Maj. John M. Miller, and Private Robt. A. Miller unknown to the writer. Privates Thomas Odom, and Willis T. Odom reside in Dooly county, Ga., severally engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private David J. Perminter resides in Houston co., Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Geo. W. Piles resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private George W. Plant resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. John C. Humber resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Sergeant Richard H. Powell resides at Blakely, Early county, Ga., engaged in the practice of law. Private John S. Price resides in Houston county, Georgia, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private John F. Renfroe resides in Houston county, Georgia, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Privates John J. Rumph, Louis D. Rumph, and Samuel J. Rumph reside in Houston county, Georgia, severally engaged in agricultural pursuits. Privates Columbus Self, Jefferson Self, and Marion Self, reside in Houston county Georgia, severally engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William I. Shines resides in Houston county Ga., employed as Section Boss on the South-Western Railroad. Private T. O. Skellie resides at Fort Valley, Georgia, employed as local agent at depot in Fort Valley, South-Western Railroad. Privates A. G. Slappey, Geo. W. Slappey, Jas. Slappey, Russell T. Slappey and Uriah Slappey reside in Sumter county, Ga., severally engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Leonidas P. Sledge resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private William Sorrell resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Francis M. Stripling resides in Dooly county Georgia, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Daniel Vinson’s whereabouts and occupation, unknown to the writer. Private Jos. S. Vinson resides in Houston county, Georgia, engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private John Visage resides in Crawford county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private Pleasant A. White resides in Houston county, Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits. Private John C. Wilson resides in Mitchell county Ga., engaged in agricultural pursuits.
And now, in conclusion, while we would not, under any circumstances whatever, be guilty of an attempt to disparage, or sully the fair fame of any of the gallant companies, of which the late Confederate army was composed; nor do we indulge in an unmerited or egotistical self-praise, when we say that the Company whose history we have traced, as regards intelligence, talent, education, gallantry, heroic fortitude, self-sacrificing endurance, and implicit obedience to duty, if it did not surpass, compared favorably with any other company that entered the Confederate army from Georgia, or any other State.
Our Company suffered as much, encountered as many difficulties, braved as much danger, and participated in as many terrific battles, and perhaps lost as many men in killed and wounded, and in deaths from disease contracted in the service as any other company. And we can boast of having had as few men taken prisoners in battle, and of having had as few desertions as any other company. The men bore up under all of the hardships and difficulties through which they had to pass, with a fortitude, unsurpassed in any age or country. Not a single mutinous element was ever discovered in any member of the company. The men were too intelligent and too modest to suppose the contest in which they had engaged, would be settled in any way, except in the legitimate way for settling such difficulties; and too manly to undertake to settle the trouble by deserting the cause. Even after the last glimmering ray of the hope of success had disappeared, and the cause lost to every rational minded man, they held out firmly, not turning the balance against themselves by contributing to increase the opposite scale by abandoning the cause, and thereby lessening the scale in which their own honor and the deserting of their posterity were to be weighed. Trusting entirely to the skill and judgement of their leaders, and relying implicitly upon the guiding arm of Omniscience, they discharged every known duty, leaving events to take their own cause. We hope, and believe that this brief Compendium contains much historical matter which will be of enduring interest to every true Southron, and especially so to every friend and relative of the Company.
We will add as a sequence to this Memoir, that all the members of our Company were native Georgians, except nine. Of these, three were natives of North Carolina, viz: Capt. Jonnathan D. Cowart, and Privates Wendell D. Croom, and Robert W. Johnson. Two were natives of South Carolina, viz: Capt. Charles H. Richardson and Sergeant Joel L. Diseker. Two were natives of Ireland, viz: Privates Thos. Butler and Jas. Corbitt. One was a native of Tennessee, viz: Private Geo. W. Hampton; and one was a native of Massachusetts, viz: Charles R. Fogg.
*****This appellation, which became so famous, took its origin from a remark made by Gen. Bee a few minutes before he fell in the battle of Manassas, on the 21st July, 1861. While rallying his men, who were wavering and likely to falter, he said: "There is Jackson standing like a stone wall." Gen. Jackson’s proper name was Thomas John.