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

Kentucky’s batteries appear with different designations across the various sources I have used to formally identify units.  A good example is that organized and commanded through May 1863 by Captain David C. Stone.  The battery appears on the Army of the Cumberland’s return for Stone’s River as “Kentucky, Battery A” which might also be transformed to “Battery A, Kentucky Light Artillery” or as the State Adjutant’s report, compiled post-war, indicated “Battery A, 1st Kentucky Light Artillery.”  But later in 1863, the same battery, under the command of Captain Theodore S. Thomasson, appears in the Army of the Cumberland’s returns as “1st Kentucky Battery” (and there was, just below that entry a 2nd Kentucky Battery, so this was not simply a truncated version with the regimental designation retained).   I’ve written on this before, for the previous quarters.  But for those not tracking posts day-to-day (for shame!), I bring this up again to preface the discussion of the batteries and their returns for the second quarter of 1863.

That all said, we are looking at a couple of numbered batteries plus a couple of detachments for that quarter’s summary:

0185_1_Snip_KY

It appears to me we have “1st Battery” and “3rd Battery” along with detachments under the 14th and 27th Infantry.  But right off the bat, there were indeed three batteries, either numbered or lettered, from Kentucky serving at this time of the war.  And furthermore there was an independent battery serving in West Virginia.  So there is some explaining in order.  First, let’s go with what the summary offers:

  • 1st Battery: At Murfreesboro, Tennessee, with three(?) 6-pdr field guns, three(?) 3-inch Ordnance Rifles, and two 3.80-inch James Rifles.
  • 3rd Battery: At Gualey Bridge, West Virginia, with six 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • Company K, 14th Regiment: At Louisa, Kentucky with four 6-pdr field guns.
  • Company H, 27th Regiment, Infantry:  At Munfordsville, Kentucky, with two 6-pdr field guns.

I have several issues with the identifications offered by the clerks at the Ordnance Department.  But they were there and I was not.  So we’ll work with those.  But before proceeding, here’s what I think those entries should have been:

  • Battery A, or 1st Battery:  At Murfreesboro under Captain Thomasson.  Placed in First Division, Fourteenth Corps when the Army of the Cumberland reorganized. But by June the battery was unassigned.  In May, Captain David C. Stone was relieved due to disability.  It appears around that time the battery was detached from the division and remained in Murfreesboro.  This should be the line marked “1st Battery” on the summary.
  • Battery B, or 2nd Battery: Assigned to Second Division, Fourteenth Corps, under Captain John M. Hewett.  The battery accompanied the division on the Tullahoma Campaign.  There’s no reason the battery should be missing from the summary.  But here we are.  However, I would point out a listing of artillery complied from returns for the Army of the Cumberland indicated Hewett’s battery did not provide a return for the quarter.
  • Battery C, or 3rd Battery:  Authorized in May 1863, according to returns, this battery did not complete organization until September 1863.  Captain John W. Neville would command.  However a curious story-line which I have not completely confirmed places the battery, while still organizing, at Lebanon, Kentucky in July 1863.  And Lebanon fell to Brigadier-General John Hunt Morgan on July 5, 1863, with most of the garrison surrendering, receiving parole. At any rate, this is not the 3rd Battery we see on the summary.
  • Simmonds’ Independent Battery, also 1st Kentucky Independent Battery: Captain Seth J. Simmonds commanded a battery formed out of Company E, 1st Kentucky Infantry.  The battery served at Gauley Bridge and Kanawha Falls, West Virginia in June 1863.  The battery became part of 3rd Division, Eighth Corps.  This battery is probably that identified by the clerks as “3rd Battery.”   This matches the armament and location given for the battery in the previous quarter.
  • 14th Kentucky Infantry: The regiment was formed at Louisa, Kentucky in December 1861.  And they returned home for a while during the winter and spring of 1863.  The regiment was part of the Army of the Ohio.  Colonel George W. Gallup commanded the regiment.  But while he served as commander of the Louisa garrison, Lieutenant-Colonel Orlando Brown, Jr. was in charge.  No further details that I know of regarding the four gun detachment.
  • 27th Kentucky Infantry: This regiment was also part of the Army of the Ohio.  And it was, as indicated on the summary, serving at Munfordsville, Kentucky in June.  Colonel Charles D. Pennebaker was commander. But while he served as garrison commander, Lieutenant-Colonel John H. Ward served in his place.

For clarity, allow me to identify the four lines using the clerks’ convention.  But I will put my identification in parenthesis.

For smoothbore ammunition on hand, we have this short report:

0187_1_Snip_KY

  • 1st Battery (Battery A): 197 shot, 180 case, 111 canister for 6-pdr field guns.
  • 14th Infantry: 596 shot, 411 case, and 306 canister for 6-pdr field guns.

No indication what, if any, the 27th Infantry had on hand.

There are no Hotchkiss projectiles reported on the first page.  That is notable, as the 1st Battery/Battery A had 3-inch rifles on hand.  So no rounds reported to “feed” those guns.

Moving to the next page, we can break those columns down into two sections.  First entries for James rifle projectiles:

0188_1A_Snip_KY

Note, we have a ‘stray’ column of Hotchkiss here:

  • 1st Battery (Battery A):  40 Hotchkiss canister for 3.80-inch James rifles.

Then to the “James” proper:

  • 1st Battery (Battery A): 12 shot and 66 shell for 3.80-inch James rifles.

To the right of that are the Parrott and Schenkl columns:

0188_1B_Snip_KY

These all go to the battery at Gauley Bridge:

  • 3rd Battery (Simmonds’):  1027 shell, 575 case, and 265 canister for 10-pdr Parrott; and 69 Schenkl shot for 10-pdr Parrott.

Simmonds’ Battery reported a substantial stockpile of ammunition the previous quarter, keeping with the trend.

For the next page, there are two entries:

0188_2_Snip_KY

  • 1st Battery (Battery A): 250 Schenkl shell for 3.80-inch rifles; 110 Tatham canister for 3.80-inch rifles.

So, in all a few gaps to question, particularly the 3-inch ammunition for 1st Battery/Battery A.  Otherwise nothing stands out to argue with.

Lastly we have the small arms:

0188_3_Snip_KY

Only the two artillery batteries reporting:

  • 1st Battery (Battery A): Fourteen Navy revolvers, ten cavalry sabers, and twenty-five horse artillery sabers.
  • 3rd Battery (Simmonds’): Thirty-eight Army revolvers and fourteen cavalry sabers.

That concludes a toiling translation of four lines of the summaries.  I don’t like all the guesswork, but that is unfortunately where the trail runs.

Summary Statement: December 31, 1862 – Batteries from Iowa, Kentucky, and Kansas

Following the order presented in the summary statements, the next set of volunteer batteries came from Iowa, Kentucky, and Kansas.  Yes, not exactly alphabetical, but we’ll go with the clerk’s ordering.

At the time of the report, in December 1862, Iowa had only three batteries accepted for service (a fourth battery was not mustered until the fall of 1863). All three are listed on the summary with only two showing reports.

There were three volunteer batteries from Kentucky were in Federal service in December 1862, according to Dyer’s Compendium.  And Dyer’s identifies two of those as lettered batteries.  But there are only two entry lines in the summary of that period, and those are listed as numbered, implied independent, batteries.  So we have questions to address for Kentucky’s batteries.

For the summary, Kansas was represented by five entries.  Three are batteries identified by commanders and two are artillery assigned to cavalry. I contend that a full, proper study of the Kansas artillery is a book waiting to be written. Many of the batteries were formed as companies within infantry or cavalry regiments (which, like Texas, was a delineation that was often blurred).  And regimental commanders were very reluctant to release those to formal artillery organizations.

And one more twist to consider with these entries – most were not received in Washington until 1864!  Those preface notes out of the way, here are the entry lines for the batteries and their cannons:

0043_Snip_IA_KY_KS_1

Starting with the Hawkeye State:

  • 1st Iowa Independent Light Battery: The location annotation does not make sense to me.  The battery was with Sherman’s ill-fated expedition to Vicksburg, landing at Chickasaw Bayou.  It reported four 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers (as they had on hand at Pea Ridge earlier in the year).
  • 2nd Iowa Independent Light Battery: No report.  The 2nd was posted between LaGrange and Germantown, Tennessee at this time, part of the Thirteenth Corps.
  • 3rd Iowa Independent Light Battery: Helena, Arkansas.  The 3rd reported four 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers. The battery was assigned to the District of Eastern Arkansas, Department of Missouri, but soon to be collected into the Vicksburg campaign.

Now over to the Bluegrass State, and the aforementioned confusions:

  • 1st Kentucky Independent Light Battery:  Located at Gualey Bridge, (West) Virginia with six 10-pdr Parrotts.  This was Captain Seth J. Simmonds’ battery, assigned to the District of the Kanawha.
  • 2nd Kentucky Artillery?:   This entry line has the notation “not in service.”  My guess is this references the 2nd Kentucky Heavy Artillery Regiment that never got organized.

Not listed on the return, but worth noting are the lettered Kentucky Batteries (sometimes identified as with the 1st Kentucky Artillery Regiment, but most often just the letter and state designation):

  • Battery A: This was Captain David C. Stone’s battery, supporting the Center Wing, Fourteenth Corps, Army of the Cumberland and in action at Stones River.
  • Battery B: Also known as Hewett’s Battery, and (to add more confusion) in some reports as the 2nd Kentucky Independent Battery.  Commanded by Lieutenant Alban A. Ellsworth.  Also saw action at Stones River in the Center Wing, Fourteenth Corps.

Allow me to hold off a more detailed discussion of the important service of those two batteries, conspicuously omitted from the summary.

Now Kansas, where more questions follow.  Let me “swag” some proper identifications here:

  • Allen’s Battery:  No report.  I think this references Captain Norman Allen and the 1st Kansas Independent Battery.  The battery saw action at Prairie Grove, as part of the Army of the Frontier, with four 12-pdr howitzers (according to my notes).
  • Blair’s Battery:  Fort Scott, Kansas.  Four 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers.  This should be Lieutenant Edward A. Smith’s 2nd Battery Kansas Artillery.  The name references Captain Charles W. Blair, the battery’s first commander.
  • Hopkins’ Battery:  Captain Henry Hopkins’ 3rd Kansas Battery.  The battery had three 6-pdr field guns and one 12-pdr field howitzer.  The battery was also at Prairie Grove.
  • [Illegible] Ninth Volunteers:  This appears to reference a section under 2nd Lieutenant Henry H. Opdyke, of the 9th Kansas Cavalry.  The section had two 12-pdr mountain howitzers.  They saw action in the Prairie Grove campaign.
  • 2nd Cavalry:  Fort Smith.  Two 12-pdr mountain howitzers.  Another detachment within a cavalry formation.  This one under Lieutenant Elias S. Stover.

Not mentioned is another artillery section, also of two 12-pdr mountain howitzers, in the 6th Kanasas Cavalry.

So again, we have a lengthy “first page” in the summary, due to setting the context of the numbers.  The summary certainly illuminates the holes in the summary statements… and why I prefer to present “as is” and then circle back for validation.

Moving on to the smoothbore ammunition tallies:

0045_Snip_IA_KY_KS_1

By the batteries:

  • 1st Iowa: 6-pdr field gun – 400 shot, 320 case, and 80 canister; 12-pdr field howitzer – 120 shell, 160 case, and 42 canister.
  • 3rd Iowa: 6-pdr field gun – 410 shot, 325 case, and 85 canister; 12-pdr field howitzer – 129 shell, 86 case, and 36 canister.
  • 2nd Kansas: 6-pdr field gun – 196 shot, 236 case, and 108 canister; 12-pdr field howitzer – 46 shell, 170 case, and 72 canister.  Also reporting a large quantity of mountain howitzer ammunition – 124 case and 34 canister.
  • 9th Kansas Cavalry section: 12-pdr mountain howitzer – 41 shell, 116 case, and 57 canister.
  • 2nd Kansas Cavalry section: 12-pdr mountain howitzer – 80 case and 8 canister.

So we have one more question – why the 2nd Kansas Battery would hold on to mountain howitzer ammunition?  Perhaps, as they were operating alongside some of the cavalry with the smaller howitzers, the ordnance handlers in the 2nd Kansas assumed some oversight in ordnance matters.

The only battery we’ve discussed today with rifled guns was the 1st Kentucky (Simmonds’) Battery with 10-pdr Parrotts.  Accordingly, we look to the Parrott columns on the corresponding pages:

0046_Snip_IA_KY_KS_1

The Kentuckians had 490 shells, 455 shot, and 60 canister of the Parrott make.

The 1st Kentucky also had a quantity of Schenkl rounds for their Parrot rifles:

0046_Snip_IA_KY_KS_2

Yes a lot of work for me to snip that, for one entry – 69 Schenkl 10-pdr shells.

I suspected the small arms section would be interesting, given the varied service. But it is somewhat pedestrian compared to others:

0046_Snip_IA_KY_KS_3

The 1st Iowa reported eight cavalry sabers and fifty foot artillery sabers.  The 1st Kentucky had nine Army revolvers and 26 cavalry Sabers.  Then we have the Kansas troops:

  • 2nd Kansas – 129 Army revolvers and 24 cavalry sabers.
  • 3rd Kansas – 53 Army revolvers and 17 cavalry sabers.
  • 9th Kansas Cavalry section – one cavalry saber.
  • 2nd Kansas Cavalry section – 21 Navy revolvers and one cavalry saber.

I’d half suspected and expected the Kansans to have some odd assortment of long guns.