Summary Statement: December 31, 1862 – Missouri’s Second Regiment and Militia

The first half of the Missouri entries on the Fourth Quarter, 1862 Summary Statements offered no small number of questions and gaps to fill.  The second half of the entries offer, what I think, are the widest gaps in any section of the summary.  There’s just no getting around the need for conjecture during the examination.  One reader, who wishes to remain anonymous, has aided me greatly in the effort to properly identify and match these entries to batteries.  But in the interest of keeping the level of conjecture down to the minimum, allow me to first present those entries “as is” for review.

Here is the first page of those entries:

0051_Snip_Dec62_2MO_1

Four entries with three different originating sources – The 2nd Missouri Light Artillery Regiment, a “1st Battery” of some unstated formation, and two from the militia (the Missouri State Militia).  Two of these lines are relatively easy to link with Official Reports.  The other two are lacking details needed for such positive identification.  Furthermore, we are missing most of the 2nd Regiment.  For now, let us table those discussions and look at the numbers on the paper.

Looking strictly at those entries, without attempting to interpret further, we have:

  • Battery M, 2nd Missouri: At Pilot Knob, Missouri reporting a regulation “mixed” battery of four 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers.  The battery was commanded by Captain Gustave Stange and assigned to the 2nd Division Army of Southeast Missouri. The battery was at St. Louis at the end of 1862, but moved to Pilot Knob later in the spring.  Note the report received date of April 1863.
  • 1st Battery:  No location indicated.  Three 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers.  We’ll discuss the question mark over this entry below.
  • 1st Battery Artillery, Militia (1st Militia Battery): Reporting at Warrensburg, Missouri (in April 1864!) with three 6-pdr field guns.  Just working from the designation, this would be Captain Albert Wachsman’s battery which was at the time stationed in the Central District of Missouri.  But let us mark the identification as tentative and discuss below.
  • 2nd Battery Artillery, Militia (2nd Militia Battery): Reporting at Jefferson City, Missouri with two 12-pdr mountain howitzers and four 10-pdr Parrotts.  And we’ll also discuss the organization below.

Turning now to the ammunition reported, we start with the smootbore calibers:

0053_Snip_Dec62_2MO_1A

By battery:

  • Battery M, 2nd Missouri: 6-pdr field guns – 502 shot, 165 case, and 53 canister; 12-pdr field howitzer – 92 shell, 120 case, and 24 canister.
  • 1st Battery:  6-pdr field guns – 75 shot, 201 case, and 48 canister; 12-pdr field howitzer – 70 shell and 48 case;  And… oh by the way, 26 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers.
  • 1st Militia Battery:  6-pdr field guns – 294 shot, 134 case, and 168 canister.
  • 2nd Militia Battery:  12-pdr mountain howitzer – 113 case and 16 canister.

Not a lot of rifled weapons among the four reporting batteries.  The only entries are under Parrott and Schenkl patents:

0054_Snip_Dec62_2MO_1

And only for the 2nd Militia. Of Parrott patent type, 245 10-pdr shells and 80 10-pdr canister.  Also 108 (?) Schenkl shot, for Parrott 10-pdrs.

Lastly, small arms:

0054_Snip_Dec62_2MO_3

  • Battery M, 2nd Missouri: 30 Army revolvers and 68 cavalry sabers.
  • 1st Battery: 20 Army revolvers and 71 cavalry sabers.
  • 1st Militia Battery: 60 percussion pistols and 10 cavalry sabers.
  • 2nd Militia Battery: 20 Navy revolvers, 23 cavalry sabers, and 51 foot artillery swords.

With those remarks entered into the “record” let us attempt to fill in some of the gaps.

Firstly, some clarification about the 2nd Missouri Regiment of Light artillery.  As with any regiment, the allocation was twelve lettered batteries (A through I, skipping J, thence K to M).   The 2nd Missouri was organized from from batteries assigned to the US Reserve Corps (a volunteer formation, but raised with the expectation of service only in Missouri).  Formally designated the 2nd Missouri in the fall of 1861, the regiment’s primary duty up to the summer of 1863 was defending St. Louis, as part of the garrison assigned there.  And, as one might guess, many of those batteries were assigned equipment from the garrison, be that heavy or light artillery.  Such would explain the lack of reports, since that equipment would be reported by the garrison’s ordnance officer on a separate set of documents.  However there were exceptions based on situations of war.  Battery M was one of those.  That all said, for the sake of complete coverage here allow me to list the elements of the 2nd Missouri by battery and their assignments for the end of 1862:

  • Battery A: District of Rolla, at Rolla.
  • Battery B: Garrison of St. Louis.
  • Battery C: District of Rollla, at Hartville.
  • Battery D: Garrison at Cape Girardeau.
  • Battery E: Garrison of St. Louis.
  • Battery F:  District of Rolla, at Hartville.
  • Battery G: District of Rolla, at Rolla.
  • Battery H: Garrison of St. Louis.
  • Battery I: Garrison of St. Louis.
  • Battery K: Garrison of St. Louis.
  • Battery L: District of Rolla, at Hartville.
  • Battery M: Department of Southeast Missouri.

Other than Battery M, the details of the individual battery equipment is a misty subject.

The militia batteries present yet another series of gaps.  Before proceeding too far, we must remember that there was not just one militia formation in Missouri during the war.  In fact, it is a deep and complicated subject.  For a short premier, there is a helpful page offered by the St. Louis Public Library.  I think one important aspect to consider about those various militia, volunteer, and guard formations is if they qualified for a Federal pension.  Short explanation here, which is fought with holes and slippery slopes, is that if the members qualified for a pension, then likely the battery was “in” the Army service at some point during the war – be that in an emergency or as part of an organized garrison formation.  Otherwise, the unit was unlikely to be a formal part of the Federal organization… and thus would likely not supply an ordnance report to Washington.  Not perfect logic, but that does narrow things down a bit.  But I think we can focus, given that logic, specifically on the Missouri State Militia (3 years), commonly referred to by the abbreviation MSM.

As the St. Louis Public Library page indicates, the MSM included two batteries.  Oh, but that’s just simplifying things.  When formed during the first half of 1862, those “batteries” included “companies” which may have been a reference to separate sections, as organized or deployed.  Enough to split the hairs of hairs.  Wachsman, mentioned above, commanded one battery which was reported at Jefferson City in December 1862.  Another battery was assigned to Independence.  (And I think we take the reported location from the summary with a grain of salt, based on the belated receipt in Washington…. however, I’m leaning towards this being a transcription error in which the clerk transposed the locations of 1st and 2nd Batteries MSM.).

Now… about those cannons…. Wachsman was particularly fond of a set of English 2.9-inch rifled guns in his battery.  And I’m very sure Wachsman had those rifles with him in December 1862.  The only thing close to those weapons in the summary are the four 10-pdr Parrotts indicated for 2nd Battery MSM.  As we’ve seen in the past with the Woodruff guns, when presented with a square peg and only round holes, the clerks tended to find a place to enumerate the tallies.  What is the difference, from the clerk’s side of the desk, between a 2.9-inch caliber 10-pdr Parrott and a 2.9-inch Blakely, for instance?  And, compounding the confusion, maybe the clerk flipped the entries for the 1st and 2nd batteries?

Oh, and speaking of Woodruff guns, there should be entries for those also.  Captain Horace M. Johnson commanded a battery of the MSM which also should be on our “list” above.  Johnson’s men crewed a pair of Woodruff guns along with mountain howitzers and 6-pdr field guns.  Johnson’s battery was sometimes referred to as the Saint Joseph Battery, but appears to have been formally the 1st Missouri Battery of Horse Artillery, MSM.  Later in the spring of 1863, Johnson’s battery was changed to a cavalry company (some sources say the 1st Missouri Cavalry MSM, others say 10th Missouri, and others just say unattached company), though apparently retaining the Woodruff guns.

Though Johnson’s might be a candidate for that “First Missouri,” I believe that line refers instead to the 1st Missouri Flying Artillery, aka. 1st Missouri Horse Artillery,  Pfennighausen’s Battery or  Landgraeber’s Battery.  That battery was assigned to Brigadier-General Frederick Steele’s Division in the ill-fated Chickasaw Bayou expedition outside Vicksburg, at the end of December 1862, and at the time commanded by Captain Clemens Landgraeber.  This battery would later become part of the 2nd Missouri Artillery Regiment.  The original Battery F was broken up (transferred to Battery D, 2nd Missouri, officially) in September 1863.  At that point, Landgraeber’s became Battery F, 2nd Missouri Artillery, often mentioned with the qualifier “New” in secondary sources to avoid (or create) confusion.

As you can see, there are still many gaps and questions about these Missouri batteries.  Unfortunately, these issues are not resolved with summaries from later quarters.  My home state’s artillery organization was an administrative mess.  What can I say?

3 thoughts on “Summary Statement: December 31, 1862 – Missouri’s Second Regiment and Militia

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