Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – Missing batteries

Earlier this week, I finished the transcription of the second quarter, 1863 summary statements with a pair of entries for California under the “Miscellaneous” heading.  In the past, I’ve given my own “miscellaneous” listing to cover batteries which were not mentioned in the summary. But since the clerks of 1863 have secured that heading, I’ll have to consider other options.

For this quarter, with evolution to the presentation, I’ve given space to many of those missing batteries in the normal entries.  Furthermore, it seemed that by June 1863 the Ordnance Department had improved accounting.  When comparing to “missing batteries” from the previous quarter, we can note entries for the 1st Arkansas, 1st Colorado, Mississippi Marine Brigade artillery, and Tennessee’s Federal batteries.  However some were inevitably left out.  A short summary by state, just as a reminder:

In addition, let us also consider the heavy artillery regiments then in service.  As of June 1863, the summaries we have to consider only tallied field artillery.  Heavy, siege, and seacoast weapons were detailed on other forms.  Though I would point out that in 1864 the summaries were consolidated somewhat.  There is a fine “bureaucratic” point to keep in mind here.  The guns of a fort, armory, or other facility were considered property of that installation.  So while the members of a regiment might have manned massive Parrotts and Columbiads, the guns were reported by the installation.

Mentioned in the bullet points above and sprinkled throughout the summaries for the second quarter, many “heavies” were issued field artillery and put to service on active campaigns IN the field.  So we have considered their service where crossing into the field artillery lane.  Still, I think for the sake of a complete record, we should at least identify what heavy artillery units were on the rolls at the time and where they served.

So my next post, to conclude the second quarter of 1863, will be a summary listing of heavy artillery units that were on the rolls as of June 1863.

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Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – Miscellaneous (3rd California Infantry)

The last entry lines for the second quarter, 1863 came under the heading of “Miscellaneous”:

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Both lines are attributed to the 3rd California Infantry.  And this raises several questions.  For the last quarter of 1862, the 3rd California held an entry line with two 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr mountain howitzers at Camp Douglas, Utah Territory.  That section was not mentioned for the first quarter of 1863.  But in the second quarter, we saw a lone entry line for a mountain howitzer with California Cavalry, shoved under the Connecticut entry lines.  Though I would speculated given the location reported, this was actually the 2nd California Cavalry, which had detachments working with the 3rd California Infantry… if not the 3rd California Infantry itself.   And at the end of the second quarter, we find two lines for separate detachments of the 3rd California Infantry, reporting a 6-pdr field gun and a 12-pdr mountain howitzer. So we have to ask if the entries from December 1862 and June 1863 are related.

Let’s consider the data first, then put the numbers in context:

  • Company H, 3rd California Infantry:  Reporting at Camp Connor, Idaho Territory with one 12-pdr mountain howitzer. Captain David Black commanded this company. More details below.
  • Lt. Col., 3rd California Infantry: At Camp Union, California with one 6-pdr field gun.  We can probably identify Lieutenant-Colonel Jeremiah B. Moore as the officer linked to this return.  He was, at that time, the second in command.

Just one ammunition page to consider:

0227_1_Snip_CA

Smoothbores on hand:

  • Company H: 36 shell, 36 case, and 24 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers.
  • Camp Union: 14 shot, 14 case, and 14 canister for 6-pdr field gun; 12 shell and 12 case for 12-pdr field howitzers.

The Camp Union howitzer ammunition was probably an excess, and not linked to some unreported weapon.

And that’s all our data.  If you wish to look at empty columns, feel free to browse the Hotchkiss, Schenkl, other rifled projectiles, and small arms pages.

But now for some context.  Before the war, Patrick Edward Connor led the Stockton Blues, a militia company from Stockton, San Joaquin County.  Just after the outbreak of war, Connor recruited a regiment around the Blues, then offered it for service.  Mustered on September 4, 1861, Connor became colonel of the regiment.  The men of the 3rd preferred to come “east” and represent the state in Virginia.  But that was not to happen, despite Connor’s connections with Major-General Henry Halleck. So the 3rd California pulled duty between Benicia Barracks, Stockton, and Camp Union (near Sacramento).

genpeconnor

Not until the summer of 1862 did the 3rd California get marching orders for the field.  With emerging threats to the Overland Mail route (and telegraph lines), Connor was ordered to move part of his regiment (about a battalion strength) into Utah Territory – through the desert in the middle of summer, mind you!   By September, the column reached the Ruby Valley were Connor established Camp (later Fort) Ruby.  (One must sympathize for those suffering soldiers.)

Fort Ruby was not an ideal location, logistically and politically.  Disregarding the suggestion to occupy the old post of Camp Floyd, some 40 miles south of Salt Lake, Connor went directly to a point overlooking the Mormon settlements (whom Connor suspected of secessionist leanings and of inciting Indian activity… among other things).  The new post was named Camp Douglas.  And as mentioned above, the regiment reported two 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr mountain howitzers at that post in December 1862.

Having established a base, Connor set out to secure the vital trails and communication links connecting California with the rest of the country.  And this required patrols into the Bear River Valley, which encountered the Shoshone and lead to the Bear River Massacre on January 29, 1863.

With the need to permanently secure the trails through that valley, the Army saw the need to expand operations.  And Connor was the man on the spot.  On March 29, he was promoted to Brigadier-General and given command of operations in the Salt Lake area.  In May. Connor pushed out a detachment to establish a post on the Bear River near Soda Springs in the Idaho Territory.  Dutifully, Captain David Black led Company H out to establish Camp Connor.  On May 23, he provided the location of this post in his report:

Pursuant to orders from district headquarters, a military post is hereby established at this point, to be known as Camp Connor. The reservation pertaining to this post is as follows: Commencing on the right bank of Bear River, on the east line of the town of Soda Springs, and thence running north 24 ½ degrees east one mile; thence east 24 ½ degrees south one mile; thence south 24 ½ degrees west one mile, more or less, to the right bank of Bear River; thence following the meanderings of said river to the place of beginning.

While all this was taking place, Connor called for reinforcements.  Among those sent was the remainder of his regiment.  Connor’s replacement, Colonel Robert Pollock, had a handful of companies and commanded Camp Union, back near Sacramento.  In May, Pollock began moving troops out to Utah, himself reporting to Camp Douglas on June 6.  The most of the remaining companies, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Jeremiah Moore, moved out of Camp Douglas around the middle of June.  From the returns of the Department of the Pacific, on June 30, the regiment’s dispositions were:

  • Camp Douglas: Six companies.
  • Fort Bridger, Utah: Company I.
  • Fort Ruby, Nevada: Companies B and E.
  • Camp Connor, Idaho: Company H.

This leaves two companies, more or less, unaccounted, but presumably with Moore on the trail to Utah.  Furthermore, we might speculate here as to the disposition of the four cannon reported the previous December.  Clearly one of the two howitzers was at Camp Connor with Company H.  From there, it is reasonable to say the howitzer reported with the non-existent 3rd California Cavalry, was the second howitzer, but either with the 2nd California Cavalry or the 3rd California Infantry.

As for the two 6-pdrs? I would be surprised if one gun had been moved from Camp Douglas back to Camp Union during the winter.  More likely both were still in Utah.  But were those simply not reported?  Was the location of Camp Union misreported (as Lt. Col. Moore was there when the paperwork was submitted)?  Or is the Camp Union gun a third weapon in that caliber secured by the 3rd California?

Well…. safe to say the Federal war effort didn’t hinge upon the location of those 6-pdrs.  It’s more a fine point of minutia, of course.  But then again, the troops manning those cannon, though not confronting Johnny Reb at Gettysburg or Vicksburg, were involved with some rather important operations… when we look at the big picture.

Consider… In the fall of 1863, Connor submitted a report to his superiors discussing the state of affairs in Utah.  He didn’t hide his opinion of the Mormons or concerns about Indian activities.  And he went further to press the value of the territory he protected:

Having reason to believe that the Territory is full of mineral wealth, I have instructed commanders of posts and detachments to permit the men of their commands to prospect the country in the vicinity of their respective posts, whenever such course would not interfere with their military duties, and to furnish every proper facility for the discovery and opening of mines of gold, silver, and other minerals, The results so far have exceeded my most sanguine expectations. Already reliable reports reach me of the discovery of rich gold, silver, and copper mines in almost every direction, and that by spring one of the largest and most hopeful fields of mining operations will be opened to the hardy and adventurous of our people. … I may also mention that near Camp Connor [emphasis mine], 150 miles north of this place, large deposits of salt, sulphur, and extensive beds of coal have been found, while the springs adjoining the camp yield immense deposits of the carbonate of soda, which will one day, I have no doubt, be of very considerable commercial value.

You’ve heard this line a time or two in those old western movies, right?

Which leads us to this….

If I be not mistaken in these anticipations, I have no reason to doubt that the Mormon question will at an early day be finally settled by peaceable means, without the increased expenditure of a dollar by Government, or, still more important, without the loss of a single soldier in conflict. I have every confidence, therefore, in being able to accomplish this desirable result without the aid of another soldier in addition to those already under my command, notwithstanding the obstacles sought to be thrown in my way by the Mormon leaders, who see in the present policy the sure downfall of their most odious church system of tyranny. I have no fear for the future and believe the dawn is breaking upon this deluded people, even though their elders, and bishops, and chief priests may escape the personal punishment their sins against law and crimes against humanity and the Government so richly merit.

Those little marks on columns in the summary?  We might consider them the stick, matched to a carrot.  All of which factored into the opening of the West… once that fighting was done back east.

Before leaving California, one more artillery formation to mention pertaining to the second quarter of 1863.  While the state did not formally muster any artillery batteries into Federal service during the war, California did have a number of militia batteries.  So in the interest of shining light into all corners of the matter, let me mention the Washington Light Artillery of Napa, Napa County.  The battery was organized on July 31, 1863, with Captain Nathan McCoombs in command. However, not until February of the next year would Napa’s Washington Light Artillery receive arms and equipment (financed by bond).

Sounds like an idea for a new wine label if you ask me….

(Citations from OR, Series I, Volume 50, Part III, Serial 106, pages 453 and 656-7.)

Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – Wisconsin’s Batteries

By the summer months of 1863, Wisconsin’s allocation to the Union cause included eleven numbered batteries.  The 1st Battery through the 10th Battery, along with the 12th, were in service at that time.  The 13th Battery would form later in the year. Wait… why skip the 11th and include the “unlucky” 13th?  Glad you asked….

The 11th Wisconsin Light Artillery organized in 1861 as the “Oconto Irish Guards” as part of the 17th Wisconsin Infantry.  When the men indicated a desire for artillery service (who wouldn’t?) the unit was designated as the 11th Battery.  Still, organization took too long.  So Captain John Rourke took his men to Chicago where it was mustered as Battery L, 1st Illinois Light Artillery, in Colonel James Mulligan’s Irish Brigade.  And Wisconsin never re-used the battery designation.

Looking at the summaries, we find the clerks dutifully excluded the 11th from the list.  Though they added the 13th and two lines for infantry reporting artillery:

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Of those fourteen lines, only three lacked statements.  Though we have some adjustments to make, due to late filings:

  • 1st Battery:  Reporting at Baton Rouge, Louisiana, as of March 1865.  But with no cannon on hand.  If we turn back the clock to June 1863, this battery was at Vicksburg, Mississippi under Ninth Division, Thirteenth Corps. The battery retained six 20-pdr Parrotts, putting them to good use earlier in May at Champion’s Hill.  Captain Jacob T. Foster, who was still division artillery chief, remained captain of the battery.  Lieutenant Charles B. Kimball, commanding in Foster’s place, became the division’s ordnance officer in late May.  In that absence, Lieutenant Oscar F. Nutting commanded the battery.
  • 2nd Battery:  No location given, but with two 12-pdr field howitzers and four 10-pdr Parrotts (reverse from the previous quarter).   Captain Charles Beger commanded this battery, which at the time was under First Division, Fourth Corps (which had been reorganized in May).  Supporting Second Brigade, the battery reported at Williamsburg, Virginia as of June 30.  The battery participated in Dix’s Peninsula Campaign.
  • 3rd Battery: No return.  This battery, under Lieutenant Cortland Livingston, became was in Third Division, Twenty-first Corps, Army of the Cumberland and participated in the Tullahoma Campaign.  Though, the battery didn’t leave Murfreesboro until early July.  Captain Lucius H. Drury, of the battery, was division artillery chief.
  • 4th Battery: No return.  The battery was assigned to the Second Division, Fourth Corps under the reorganizations of the Department of Virginia in May.  The battery was at Yorktown, Virginia, presumably retaining six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  The participated in the operations on the Peninsula through June and July. Captain  John F. Vallee commanded this battery.
  • 5th Battery: Reporting from Winchester, Tennessee with two 12-pdr Napoleons, two 12-pdr mountain howitzers, and two 10-pdr Parrotts.  The battery was assigned to First Division, Twentieth Corps, and commanded by Captain George Q. Gardner. Participating in the Tullahoma Campaign, the battery moved out of Murfreesboro on June 24.
  • 6th Battery: With a report from Cartersville, Georgia, dated October 1864, this battery claimed two 6-pdr field guns, two 12-pdr field howitzers, and two 3.80-inch James Rifles.  As of June 30, 1863, this battery was with Seventh Division, Seventeenth Corps and part of the siege of Vicksburg.  Captain Henry Dillon commanded at the beginning of spring.  When Dillon became division artillery chief, Lieutenant Samuel F. Clark stood in as commander.
  • 7th Battery: At Memphis, Tennessee with two 6-pdr field guns and four 3.80-inch James rifles.  Lieutenant Galen E. Green remained in command of this battery, assigned to Third Division, Sixteenth Corps.  At the end of May, the battery was stationed in Jackson, Tennessee. They moved to Corinth, Mississippi on June 1.  But only remained their until July 1, when they moved to Memphis.
  • 8th Battery: At Winchester, Tennessee with two 12-pdr Napoleons and four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. Assigned to First Division, Twentieth Corps. Captain Henry E. Stiles remained in command.  The battery accompanied the division on the Tullahoma Campaign.
  • 9th Battery: Fort Lyon, Colorado with four 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers. Captain Cyrus H. Johnson commanded this battery posted in the District of Colorado.
  • 10th Battery: Reporting at Stevenson, Alabama with six 6-pdr field guns, as of October 1863. Captain Yates V. Beebe’s battery was assigned to the Second Division, Reserve Corps, Army of the Cumberland.  From the beginning of the year up to September, the battery performed escort duties based out of Nashville and Murfreesboro.
  • 12th Battery: Another dated return has this battery at Dixon’s Station, Alabama on November 25, 1863.  However, for June 30, Captain William Zickerick and his battery’s four 10-pdr Parrotts were assigned to Seventh Division, Seventeenth Corps. Thus they fell in next to the 6th Wisconsin Battery at Vicksburg.
  • 13th Battery: No return.  As alluded to above, the 13th Battery did not muster until December 1863.  But the battery started forming in the summer.  A glance through the battery rolls indicate a handful of enlistments in July and August.
  • Company A, 8th Wisconsin: At Young’s Point, Louisiana with four 6-pdr field guns, two 12-pdr field howitzers, and one 3.80-inch James rifle.  This is the regiment with “Old Abe” the bald eagle as a mascot.  To be honest, until reading this line I had no knowledge of any artillery manned by the regiment.  Perhaps captured weapons impressed for the siege of Vicksburg?  Captain Josiah B. Redfield commanded Company A.
  • Detachment, 30th Wisconsin:  On the Missouri River with six 6-pdr field guns.  The 30th Wisconsin served by detachments at posts in Wisconsin and the Dakota Territories at this time of the war.  Colonel Daniel J. Dill commanded the regiment.  In May, a detachment under Lieutenant-Colonel Edward M. Bartlett supported Brigadier-General Alfred Sully’s expedition up the Missouri River.  Bartlett’s command guarded boats and supplies. Given the placename provided and the nature of the mission, a good possibility that detachment had the guns identified here.

With that lengthy discussion to identify just who these fourteen lines represented, let’s put some weight to the matter.  Starting with some smoothbore shot, shell, case, and canister:

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Look at all those numbers!

  • 2nd Battery: 120 shell and 52 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers; 160 case for 12-pdr field guns (likely a transcription error, and should be on the howitzer column).
  • 5th Battery: 96 shot, 32 shell, 96 case, and 40 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons; 65 shell, 159 case, and 49 canister for 12-pdr howitzer (field or mountain?).
  • 6th Battery: 77 shot, 145 case, and 124 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 21 shell, 89 case, and 18 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • 7th Battery: 186 shot, 248 case, and 87 canister for 6-pdr field guns.
  • 8th Battery: 32 shot, 96 shell, 64 case, and 64 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.
  • 9th Battery: 400 shot, 320 case, and 80 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 150 shells, 190 case, and 62 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • 10th Battery: 569 shot, 480 case, and 120 canister for 6-pdr field guns.
  • Company A, 8th Infantry: 269 shot, 44 case, and 636 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 48 case and 156 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons (or are those transcription errors and should be on the howitzer columns?)
  • 30th Infantry: 476 shot, 266 case, and 238 canister for 6-pdr field guns.

Regardless if the 12-pdr ammunition reported by the 8th Infantry was for Napoleons of howitzers, we see a rather substantial quantity of canister.  Such might indicate these were weapons assigned for use in the siege lines on guard points.

Four batteries reported Hotchkiss projectiles for rifled guns:

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Yes I said four.  Three of those batteries appear on this page.  The other, we’ll see on the “orphan” columns on the next page:

  • 6th Battery: 80 shot and 26 bullet shell for 3.80-inch James rifles.
  • 7th Battery: 80 percussion shell, 160 fuse shell, and 450 bullet shell for 3.80-inch rifles.
  • 8th Battery: 150 canister, 486 fuse shell, and 94 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

I’ll break down the next page by section for clarity.  First the stray Hotchkiss columns:

0228_1A_Snip_WI

Two lines:

  • 7th Battery: 80 canister for 3.80-inch rifles.
  • Company A, 8th Infantry: 39 canister for 3.80-inch rifles.

Turning next to the James projectiles:

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One battery:

  • 6th Battery: 116 shell and 66 canister for 3.80-inch rifles.

Next the Parrott columns:

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A heavy set of numbers here:

  • 1st Battery: 2,208 shell and 1,183 case for 20-pdr Parrotts.
  • 2nd Battery: 384 shell and 96 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • 5th Battery: 142 shell, 168 case, and 79 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • 12th Battery: 321 shell, 244 case, and 136 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.

Note that 1st Battery had no guns on the report.  Yet, they’d need a steamboat or two for the shells and case.  Someone left something out of the reports…

But we are not done with the Parrott batteries.  They also used Schenkl projectiles in those calibers:

0228_1D_Snip_WI

  • 1st Battery: 466 shot for 20-pdr Parrott.
  • 2nd Battery: 314 shot for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • 5th Battery: 9 shot for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • 12th Battery: 116 shot for 10-pdr Parrott.

No more entries for the Schenkl columns:

0228_2_Snip_WI

But a lone entry for Tatham’s canister:

  • 6th Battery: 62 canister for 3.80-inch rifles.

That brings us to the small arms:

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By battery:

  • 2nd Battery: Twenty Army revolvers and 153 horse artillery sabers.
  • 6th Battery: Twenty-three cavalry sabers.
  • 7th Battery: Thirty Army revolvers and twenty cavalry sabers.
  • 8th Battery: Sixteen Navy revolvers and four cavalry sabers.
  • 9th Battery: Forty-five navy revolvers and nineteen cavalry sabers.
  • 10th Battery: Fifteen horse artillery sabers.
  • 12th Battery: Eight cavalry sabers.

No real surprises here with the small arms, with quantities similar to that reported the previous quarter… where quantities are reported!

But that brings up an interesting contrast to consider.  We have seen many lines for batteries without proper documentation.  Wisconsin, with just two lacking (I don’t count the 13th Battery here, as it didn’t exist formally), is much better than most of the sections.  We have two batteries – one in Tennessee and one in Virginia – with no data to consider.  Of course, we can project reasons for this upon the situation.  After all, the war had priority… paperwork could wait.

Yet, the 30th Wisconsin Infantry, with no “real” artillerists and scattered all over the western plains far away from the Ordnance Department, managed to provide a return for compilation.  The inconsistencies of reporting in the 1860s.

Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – West Virginia Batteries

At the close of the second quarter of 1863, West Virginia was but ten days a state.  Word of the state’s admission to the Union did not move quickly down Pennsylvania Avenue to the clerks at the Ordnance Department.  They continued to place the batteries under a heading of “Virginia.”

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The clerks allocated lines for batteries A to H.  Though Battery H had not formed at this time.  An additional line, dated August 7, accounts for a mountain howitzer in the charge of the 13th West Virginia Infantry.  Looking at the administrative details:

  • Battery A: At Camp Barry, D.C. with no cannon reported. This battery was in the Artillery Camp of Instruction, Camp Barry.  Lieutenant (later Captain) George Furst remained in command.  The battery only reported some equipment and small arms in its return.
  • Battery B: At New Creek, (West) Virginia with six 10-pdr Parrotts.  Captain John V. Keeper command this battery,  supporting Averill’s Brigade, Department of West Virginia.
  • Battery C: At Taneytown, Maryland with four 10-pdr Parrotts. Captain Wallace Hill commanded this battery.  In May, the battery transferred from Eleventh Corps to 3rd Volunteer Brigade, Artillery Reserve, Army of the Potomac.  Their Parrotts held a position on Cemetery Hill on July 2 and 3, at Gettysburg.  In the battle, Hill reported two men killed, two wounded, and the loss of five horses.  The battery expended 1,120 rounds.  “I think,” Hill concluded in his report, “I have just cause to feel proud of the part my men sustained during the entire terrible engagement.”
  • Battery D: Reporting at Hancock, Maryland with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. Captain John Carlin’s battery was assigned to First Brigade, Second (Milroy’s) Division, Eighth Corps (Middle Department).  The battery was with that command during the battle of 2nd Winchester.  According to Carlin’s report, the battery had six 3-inch Ordnance rifles and 300 rounds as of June 12.  During the battle, the battery fired 265 rounds.  In the morning of June 14, Carlin received orders to spike the guns, destroy ammunition, and ride out with the horses.  He added, “Had I been allowed to do so, I could have taken my guns and equipment… and, in my opinion, could have rendered good service in covering the retreat….”
  • Battery E: Reporting at New Creek, (West) Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Under Captain Alexander C. Moore this battery supported Campbell’s Independent Brigade, Department of West Virginia.
  • Battery F: No return.  Captain Thomas A. Maulsby commanded the battery, supporting Third Brigade, First Divsion, Eighth Corps (Middle Department).  The battery reported six 3-inch Ordnance rifles in the previous quarter.  They were stationed at Martinsburg with their brigade when Confederates attacked on June 14.  In the withdrawal, Maulsby was wounded in the leg.  Lieutenant George W. Graham took over the battery.
  • Battery G: Indicated at Martinsburg, (West) Virginia with two 6-pdr field guns and two 10-pdr Parrotts.  Captain Chatham T. Ewing commanded this battery, supporting Averell’s Separate Brigade, Department of West Virginia.
  • Battery H:  The state’s Adjutant’s report has Captain James H. Holmes commissioned as commander of this battery in late September.  This was a “six months” battery, and does not appear to have entered Federal service.  The battery was reformed in January 1864.
  • “Col. 13th Infantry”:  Colonel William R. Brown commanded the 13th West Virginia Infantry, part of Scammon’s Division of the Department of West Virginia.  The regiment spent the winter split between Point Pleasant and Hurricane Bridge, West Virginia.  They tangled with Confederates in late March.  Then in late June the regiment moved to Charleston, West Virginia, arriving on June 30.  Within a few days the regiment was dispatched to assist in the pursuit of Morgan’s Raiders.  The return indicates the 13th Infantry had use of one 12-pdr Mountain Howitzer.  But I have no further details.

One “administrative” note here for clarity.  Many of these West Virginia batteries were counted as part of the Middle Department.  With the Confederate drive down the Shenandoah and into Pennsylvania, changes to the Federal order of battle occurred on the fly.  Thus some elements were gathered into the Department of West Virginia.  I don’t have space here to detail, and the subject is a bit out of scope. Hopefully readers will appreciate the context.

Turning to the ammunition.  Just one battery and the infantry section reported smoothbore cannon:

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Those were:

  • Battery G: 100 shot, 90 (or 70?) case, and 56 canister for 6-pdr field guns.
  • 13th Infantry: 92 case and 68 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers.

Moving to the rifled projectiles, Hotchkiss first for the 3-inch Ordnance rifles:

0227_2_Snip_VA

  • Battery E: 142 canister, 344 percussion shell, and 1,208 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.

Keep in mind that Battery D, with 3-inch rifles at Winchester, expended or destroyed all it’s ammunition.  And Battery F, also with 3-inch rifles, did not file a return. Both were caught up in the debacle of the Federal retreat out of the Shenandoah.

For the next page, we can focus narrowly on the Parrott columns:

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Three reporting:

  • Battery B: 483 shell and 334 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery C: 383 shell, 240 case, and 163 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery G:  80 shell for 10-pdr Parrott.

In regard to Battery C, was that the quantity left on hand after firing 1,120 rounds at Gettysburg?  Or was that the quantity on hand as of December 29, 1863 – as the report was dated?

Battery B also reported some Schenkl projectiles for its Parrotts:

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  • Battery B: 308 shell and 610 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.

Turning to the small arms:

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By battery:

  • Battery A: Fifteen Army revolvers and seventy-five cavalry sabers.
  • Battery B: Seventeen Army revolvers and forty-eight horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery C: Ten Navy revolvers and nine cavalry sabers.
  • Battery D: Sixteen (?) Navy revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery E: Twenty-nine Army revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery G: Thirteen Army revolvers.

Circling back to the service of these batteries at this particular time of the war, the statements offered by Captains Hall and Carlin (in the administrative section above) resonate.  One battery commander lamented the lack of cannon to perform his duty.  Another lauded his men for performance holding a critical line.

Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – Vermont Batteries

At the end of June, the two volunteer batteries from Vermont were serving at Port Hudson, Louisiana:

0225_1_Snip_VT

Just the 1st and 2nd Batteries at this time of the war, with the third forming up in January 1864.  And a very short administrative description:

  • 1st Vermont Light Battery: Listed at Port Hudson, Louisiana with six 3-inch rifles (perhaps ending any speculation I might have offered from the previous quarter). Captain George T. Hebard remained in command.  The battery was assigned to Second Division, Nineteenth Corps.  Hebard’s battery occupied a position just left of center on the Federal siege lines.
  • 2nd Vermont Light Battery: Also at Port Hudson, Louisiana with six 3.67-inch rifles.  Although using a column for bronze pieces, these were most certainly Sawyer rifles of cast steel. Assigned to Third Division, Nineteenth Corps under Captain Pythagoras E. Holcomb. The battery occupied one of the works on the right end of the Federal siege line, rather close to the Confederate defenses.

There is a fine map from the Atlas volume of the Official Records which shows the respective locations for these batteries.  The map annotations call out each battery by commander’s name.  According to the map, the 1st Battery had six 3-inch rifles and the 2nd Battery had six 6-pdr Sawyer rifles.

No smoothbore rounds reported for these batteries, only rifled projectiles.  We start with Hotchkiss for the 1st Battery:

0227_2_Snip_VT

  • 1st Battery: 110 canister, 75 percussion shell, and 860 (!) bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

Turning to the next page, note the lack of James projectiles.  We can focus on the Dyer’s Patent types:

0228_1A_Snip_VT

Again, just 1st Battery:

  • 1st Battery: 120 Dyer’s canister for 3-inch rifles.

Rather significant we don’t see any Hotchkiss, Dyer’s, James, or Parrott reported from 2nd Battery.  In a way it corroborates the presence of Sawyer rifles.  Those weapons were designed to fire projectiles of Addison M. Sawyer’s design (patented in 1855).

But we do see 2nd Battery in the Schenkl columns:

0228_2_Snip_VT

Both batteries in fact:

  • 1st Battery: 312 Schenkl shells for 3-inch rifles.
  • 2nd Battery: 99 shot, 1536 (!!) shell, and 524 canister, of Schenkl type, for 3.67-inch rifles.

Of note, Sawyer’s patented projectiles featured a large lead sabot that covered almost the entire body of the projectile.  Some of those have been recovered from around Port Hudson.  There is no doubt 2nd Battery had Sawyer projectiles for their rifles.  But there are no columns for Sawyer.  So… do perhaps the clerks put “Sawyer” under “Schenkl”?

Moving to the right, 2nd Battery also reported Tatham’s canister:

  • 2nd Battery: 598 Tatham canister for 3.67-inch rifles.

Yes, a lot of canister.  And certainly something an artillerist would want around during a siege.

Turning to the small arms:

0228_3_Snip_VT

Both batteries reporting:

  • 1st Battery: Eighteen Army revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • 2nd Battery: Eleven Army revolvers and fifty-eight cavalry sabers.

As is my mission, of sorts, with these summaries is to translate and demonstrate how these dry numbers translated to real activity afield, the Vermont batteries, while brief, are an excellent case in point.  We can match the guns reported – though not without questioning the clerks on 2nd Battery’s guns – to specific places on wartime maps.  And from those maps we can step out to what remains of the battlefield today.  All contributing to the study of the subject.

Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – 1st Tennessee Light Artillery

No surprise to Civil War students that Tennessee contributed troops to the Union cause.  While the infantry and cavalry receive their due, the artillery batteries are seldom mentioned.  And if we work from the summary statements for second quarter of 1863, that contribution was worthy only of a blank line:

0225_1_Snip_TN

1st Battery Tennessee Artillery…. but there were actually two such 1st Batteries in existence as of June 1863.  Which one are we looking at here?  My short answer is “either, or!”  First let’s break down the two batteries that should be listed here.  The 1st Tennessee Light Artillery would eventually include eight batteries – A, B, C, D, E, F, G, and K.  The regiment (or battalion as it is sometimes identified by) was not formally created until November 1863.  Prior to that time, Batteries A and B existed as separate “1st Batteries” with separate identifications by the region in which they were assigned.

So our two batteries to consider:

  • 1st Middle Tennessee Battery:  Would be come Battery A, 1st Tennessee. Battery formed in the fall of 1862 under command of Captain Ephraim P. Abbott.  In June 1863 the battery was at Clarksville, Tennessee with two 6-pdr field guns and four 3.80-inch James rifles.  By the end of July, the battery was on campaign with the Third Division, Reserve Corps, Army of the Cumberland.
  • 1st East Tennessee Battery: Started forming in the spring of 1863, being recruited from refugees from east Tennessee.  Mustered into service on April 16.  Stationed at Camp Nelson, Kentucky while being formed and trained.  No guns assigned… in fact very little equipment of any sort assigned.  Commanded by Captain Robert Clay Crawford.  Later became Battery B, 1st Tennessee.  And Crawford would become colonel of the regiment in the fall.

The clerks offered us no clues as to which of these batteries is represented by the line in the summary.  Quite possible they just threw a placeholder on the form, leaving it at that.  No other equipment appears on any of the columns that follow.  (I’ve uploaded all to Flickr, so you can gaze at empty columns…) Since we have little to discuss in regard to equipment, allow me to expand upon the early history of these batteries… with emphasis on the battery commanders.

Abbott was not a Tennessean by birth or by any other measure.  He was from Zanesville, Ohio.  I believe he is the same Ephraim P. Abbott with an appointment to West Point in 1851.  But he did not graduate from the academy.  The 1860 census listed him as a 27 year old living with his father (and, if I read the line correctly, working as a surveyor).  Abbott volunteered for the 3rd Ohio Infantry (three-year) in June 1861, and was commissioned as captain of Company E.  Then on August 24, 1862, Abbott transferred to the newly authorized 1st Middle Tennessee Battery.  Military Governor Andrew Johnson gave Abbott authority to recruit in the Nashville and middle Tennessee area.  and Abbott formally took command in September.

The biggest issue facing the 1st Middle Tennessee Battery, according to Abbott’s reports, was pay.  The State Comptroller, Joseph Fowler, insisted on paying the men in Tennessee script, from the Bank of Tennessee in Nashville.  This was valued at 20% less than US currency.  So when paid $10, the Tennessee artillerists could only get $8 of whiskey from the sutlers.  Not good…. and thus the battery protested and refused pay for several months until the matter could be resolved. Even statements from Fowler to honor an “indebtedness” of the state to the soldiers were not good enough.  The matter was finally resolved in the soldiers favor, though just as the soldiers were assigned to a field command and ordered south.  Willie and Joe of a later war would certainly sympathize.

Just a side note on Abbott – we will hear more of him in later summaries, but he was not destined to remain in command through the war.  In December 1864 he was dismissed due to an unauthorized leave of absence.  Writing to confirm that action, Brigadier-General John M. Brannan assessed, “I do not believe the battery will ever be worth anything under his command.”  So we might conclude Abbott was not a stellar artillerist.

Turing to the 1st East Tennessee Artillery, authorization to recruit the battery came in March 1863:

Crawford Fold3_Page_13

Captain Robert Clay Crawford is an interesting character… and that is an understatement.  He was from Rogersville, Tennessee.  Crawford had an appointment (secured by Andrew Johnson, who was then a US Representative) to West Point before the war, being admitted in 1850.  Like Abbott, Crawford did not graduate.  At some point in the 1850s he was convicted of a crime and spent time in prison.  Forging his pardon, he escaped back to Tennessee.  In February 1863, Crawford secured a commission as captain of Company B, 5th (East) Tennessee Infantry.  There is some indication his connection to Johnson played a role in obtaining that position.   And, as indicated above, shortly after he was charged with recruiting a light battery, by order of Johnson.

Crawford was apparently an efficient recruiter.  The battery was officially mustered on April 16.  By May the battery reported 121 men… but no equipment.  The troops had to purchase their own clothing and accouterments, pending government issue.  And they had no guns for drill.  They relocated to Camp Nelson in late May.  Then moved to Somerset, Kentucky in July.  Later in September, the battery received guns, to be drawn by mules.  All of which dampened spirits.

By November, authorities decided Tennessee needed a full regiment of light artillery.  And Crawford was deemed the right person to lead the regiment (again, likely due to his connections with Johnson).  We’ll see Crawford again in the summaries, of course.  But I’ll throw out a teaser here.  Crawford was brought up on charges, in November 1864, of counterfeiting notes from the Bank of Tennessee along about twenty other counts of theft and corruption.  You can’t make this stuff up!

Though outside the scope of “light” artillery, I should mention two of Tennessee’s heavy artillery regiments which had just organized in June 1863.

The 1st Tennessee Heavy Artillery (African Descent) formed in April 1863 to garrison Fort Pickering, Memphis, Tennessee.  Colonel Ignatz G. Kappner commanded the regiment.  But while the formation remained more battalion strength, Major Emil Smith was in command while Knapper commanded the fort’s overall garrison.  In March 1864, the regiment was re-designated the 2nd US Heavy Artillery (Colored).

The 2nd Tennessee Heavy Artillery (African Descent) was recruited from contrabands in and around Columbus, Kentucky.  Colonel Charles H. Adams (of Illinois) commanded.  The regiment had just formed in June 1863 and does not appear on returns until October.  In April 1864 the regiment became the 3rd US Heavy Artillery (Colored).

As you can see, Tennessee was providing many artillerists to the Federal cause in the summer of 1863.

Summary Statement, 2nd Quarter, 1863 – 3rd Rhode Island Heavy Artillery

Readers will be familiar with the 3rd Rhode Island Heavy Artillery due to their service along the South Carolina coast.  Hardly a month passes without mention of that unit here on this blog.  Though the main story-line in the 3rd’s service was operations against Charleston, batteries from the regiment served at times in Florida and Virginia.  And their service often defied the label of “heavy” artillery, as often the gunners served in the field as field artillery proper.

A bit of background on this regiment is in order.  The 3rd Rhode Island Volunteers first mustered as an infantry formation in August 1861.  As they prepared for their first major operation, as part of Brigadier-General Thomas W. Sherman’s expedition to Port Royal, they camped at Fort Hamilton, New York.  While there, under orders from Sherman, the regiment drilled on both heavy and light artillery.  By the time the regiment arrived at Hilton Head, it was for all practical purposes an artillery regiment.  Though the formal change did not occur until December of that year.

Over the months that followed, the 3rd Rhode Island served by batteries and detachments as garrison artillery, field artillery, infantry, and even ship’s complement as needs of the particular moment called.  In the winter of 1863, Battery C was designated a light battery in light of its habitual service.  We’ve seen that reflected in returns from the fourth quarter, 1862 and first quarter, 1863. However, the battery seemed to change armament with each quarter.  I believe this reflects more the “ad hoc” nature of tasking in the theater at that time.  For the second quarter, 1863, we find the guns reported on hand again changed:

0217_1_Snip_RI_3rd

At the end of June, Battery C had just returned from the raid on Darien, Georgia.  They were at Hilton Head on June 30, preparing for transit to Folly Island.  So this tally of two 12-pdr field howitzers may reflect a status as of January 1864, when the return was received in Washington.

This brief line, along with “clerical” lines for Batteries A and B, brings up a couple of facets to the summaries as they relate to the “real” operational situations.  First off, we know, based on official records and other accounts, not to mention photographs, the 3rd Rhode Island had more than just a couple of howitzers.  We must also consider the property management within the military and how that was reflected in the reports. The military in general tends to be very anal about tracking property.  For any given item, someone, somewhere is on the hook as the “owner” of said item.  Doesn’t matter if that item is a belt buckle or a cannon.  The “owner” might be a specific unit or could be a facility.  So, in the Civil War and specific to the context of this discussion, that “owner” could be a battery in the 3rd Rhode Island… or it could be the garrison commander at Hilton Head.  However, we rarely, if ever, see those garrison commands reflected in the summaries.  A significant blank that we cannot resolve with satisfaction.

What we can do, in the case of the 3rd Rhode Island, is use primary and secondary sources to provide a glimpse into that blank.  Let’s consider the 3rd Rhode Island by battery at this point in time of the war.  Recall, the 3rd and other units were, at the end of June, preparing for an assault from Folly Island onto Morris Island. Colonel Edwin Metcalf was in command of the regiment, with his headquarters on Hilton Head:

  • Battery A:  On Port Royal Island, under command of Lieutenant Edward F. Curtis (in absence of Captain William H. Hammer), serving as garrison artillery.
  • Battery B:  On Folly Island under Captain Albert E. Greene, having moved from Hilton Head at the end of June.  The battery manned six 10-inch siege mortars.
  • Battery C: Transferring from St. Helena Island to Hilton Head, and thence to Folly Island in the first week of July.  Commanded by Captain Charles R. Brayton.  The battery would man two 3-inch Ordnance Rifles and four 30-pdr Parrotts (along with a detachment from Battery C, 1st US Artillery).  Likely the reported howitzers were in reserve.
  • Battery D: Part of the original garrison sent to Folly Island in April.  Under the command of Captain Robert G. Shaw and manning eight 30-pdr Parrotts.
  • Battery E: On Hilton Head, serving as garrison artillery under Captain Peter J. Turner (who was serving as a staff officer, thus one of his lieutenants was in temporary command).
  • Battery F: On Hilton Head, serving as garrison artillery under Captain David B. Churchill.
  • Battery G: Stationed at Fort Pulaski and under Captain John H. Gould.
  • Battery H: On Hilton Head, serving as garrison artillery under Captain Augustus W. Colwell.  Would deploy to Morris Island in July.
  • Battery I:  On Folly Island under Captain Charles G. Strahan.  The battery manned four 20-pdr Parrotts.
  • Battery K: On Hilton Head, serving as garrison artillery under Lieutenant Horatio N. Perry.
  • Battery L: On Hilton Head, serving as garrison artillery under Captain Jeremiah Lanhan.
  • Battery M:  Part of the force on Folly island, under Captain Joseph J. Comstock.  They manned four 10-inch siege mortars and five 8-inch siege mortars.

Thus we see the 3rd Rhode Island was spread between garrison duties and advanced batteries preparing for a major offensive from Folly Island.  Those on the north end of Folly Island, overlooking Light House Creek, were armed with a variety of field guns, heavy Parrotts, and mortars.  Only the former category would have been covered by the summaries, as they existed in June 1863.  And what we have to work with is, based on official reports at the time, inaccurate.

But that’s what we must work with!  Turning to the smoothbore ammunition:

0219_1_Snip_RI_3rd

  • Battery C: 156 shell, 214 case, and 132 canister for 12-pdr field howitzer.

One might think no rifled projectiles would be on hand… but perhaps related to the two 3-inch rifles reported on Folly Island and manned by Battery C, we find some Hotchkiss projectiles on hand:

 

0219_2_Snip_RI_3rd

  • Battery C: 48 canister and 108 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

No ammunition reported on the next page, of Dyer’s, James, or Parrott patents:

0220_1_Snip_RI_3rd

But some Schenkl on hand:

0220_2_Snip_RI_3rd

  • Battery C: 100 shell for 3-inch rifles.

As for small arms:

0220_3_Snip_RI_3rd

  • Battery C: Forty-eight Army revolvers and 102 cavalry sabers.

I suspect, given the varied nature of the 3rd Rhode Island’s duties, the other batteries had a large number of small arms on hand also.  But because of the selective record, we don’t have the details.

Just to say we discussed ALL the Rhode Island artillery, let me mention two other heavy artillery regiments.  The 5th Rhode Island Infantry was reorganized as the 5th Rhode Island Heavy Artillery on May 27, 1863.  Stationed at New Berne, North Carolina, Colonel George W. Tew commanded the reorganized regiment.

Though not organized, we can trace the story of another heavy artillery regiment back to June 1863.  In response to the emergency developing in Pennsylvania, the governor of Rhode Island authorized Colonel Nelson Viall (formerly of the 1st Rhode Island Infantry) to form a six-month regiment.  Designated the 13th Rhode Island, recruitment was slow due to the war situation, small bounties, and the draft.  By July, the War Department decided no more six-month regiments would be accepted and insisted on a three-year enlistment standard.  With that, the 13th was disbanded and in its place the 14th Rhode Island was authorized.  That formation, which began organization in August, was a US Colored Troops Regiment of heavy artillery.