Summary Statement, 3rd Quarter, 1863 – 1st (West) Virginia Light Artillery

Although West Virginia was formally admitted to the Union in June, the clerks at the Ordnance Department still used the, then, obsolete header of “Virginia” when grouping batteries from the state:

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Eight batteries of the 1st (West) Virginia Light Artillery and two artillery sections in infantry regiments.  We’ll break this down into two installments, for clarity and convenience.  So first we look at the 1st regiment’s batteries:

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The 1st Regiment only ever had eight batteries.  Battery A’s first commander Philip Daum, was the regiment’s ranking officer, promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel in mid-1862 (though some records indicate a rank of Colonel, I find no documentation of that rank in the US Volunteers).    Daum served as an artillery chief during the Valley Campaigns of 1862.  But I am unsure as to his role and responsibilities after that point.  The eight batteries were representing the new state in the field:

  • Battery A: At Camp Barry, D.C. with four 12-pdr Napoleons. This battery was in the Artillery Camp of Instruction, Camp Barry.  On September 3, George Furst was promoted to captain.  Later in December the battery would return to the field.
  • Battery B: At Beverly, (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 Rappahannock Station, Virginia with six 10-pdr Parrotts (although a consolidated report from the Army of the Potomac, dated August 31, gives this battery four Parrotts). The “Pierpoint Battery” remained under Captain Wallace Hill.  The battery remained in the Artillery Reserve, Army of the Potomac.  With reorganizations of the reserve, the battery moved from the Third Volunteer Brigade to the Fourth Volunteer Brigade.  And it would later move to the Second Volunteer Brigade.
  • Battery D: Reporting at New Creek, (West) Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. Captain John Carlin’s battery was part of Mulligan’s Brigade, Department of West Virginia.  Recall this battery spiked and abandoned its guns with the retreat from 2nd Winchester. Just a few weeks later, the battery was re-equipped and in the field.
  • Battery E: Reporting at Mechanicsburg Gap, (West) Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Under Captain Alexander C. Moore, this battery was part of Campbell’s Independent Brigade, Department of West Virginia.  The battery is mentioned on interpretive markers at Fort Mill Ridge, overlooking the Mechanicsburg Gap.
  • Battery F: At Camp Barry, D.C. with four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Recall this battery was caught up in the retreat from Martinsburg in June, losing all four guns (which were obviously replaced when they arrived at Camp Barry). Captain Thomas A. Maulsby, commanding the battery, was among the wounded.  In his place, Lieutenant John S.S. Herr commanded through July.  Herr became ill and relinquished command to Lieutenant James C. Means in August.  Finally, in October,  Lieutenant George W. Graham was promoted to battery captain. Again, note this battery was rapidly re-equipped after the disasters of June 1863.
  • 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.  But with Ewing wounded at White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia on August 26, Lieutenant Howard Morton stood in as commander. The battery supported Averell’s Separate Brigade, Department of West Virginia.
  • Battery H:  No return. Captain James H. Holmes was commissioned as commander of this battery in late September. The battery was still organizing through the fall.

Moving on to the ammunition reported, first the smoothbore:

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  • Battery A: 128 shot, 64 shell, 200 case, and 128 canister for 12-pdr Napoleons.
  • Battery G: 300 case for 6-pdr field guns.

Moving to the rifled projectiles, first the Hotchkiss:

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  • Battery D: 120 canister, 18 percussion shell, 278 fuse shell, and 720 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery E: 226 canister, 395 percussion shell, and 1,303 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery F: 80 canister, 111 percussion shell, 370 fuse shell, and 252 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

Yes, a lot of shells for Battery E as they protected their gap in the mountains.

On the next page, we only have Parrott projectiles to account for:

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  • Battery B: 372 shell, 333 case, and 206 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery C: 653 shell, 270 case, and 213 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery G: 92 shell for 10-pdr Parrott.

One entry for Schenkl projectiles:

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  • Battery C:  90 case for 10-pdr Parrott.

We turn last to the small arms reported:

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  • Battery A: Fifteen army revolvers and seventy-five cavalry sabers.
  • Battery B: Eighteen navy revolvers and forty-four horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery C: Ten navy revolvers and nine cavalry sabers.
  • Battery D: Sixteen army revolvers and five horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery E: Twenty-nine army revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F: Thirteen army revolvers, six navy revolvers, and twenty-five cavalry sabers.
  • Battery G: Thirteen army revolvers.

Save for Battery H, which was still organizing, a rather complete record for the West Virginia batteries.  We’ll look at the two sections reported in the infantry regiments next.

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Summary Statement, 1st Quarter, 1863 – West Virginia Batteries

The section heading reads “Virginia”.  But we know the complicated why that section could not, officially at least, be “West Virginia” for another quarter of record keeping.

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From the previous quarter, we saw two lines accounting for infantry serving as artillery.  For the first quarter, 1863, just one.  And that one is easily reconciled.  Company C, Sixth (West) Virginia Infantry was later reorganized as Battery F, 1st West Virginia Artillery come April 1863.  For simplicity here, I’ll adjust that entry line to the later designation:

  • Battery A: At Washington, D.C. with no cannon reported. This battery was in the Artillery Camp of Instruction, Camp Barry.  Captain John Jenks was dismissed in early March, replaced by Lieutenant (later Captain) George Furst. The previous quarter this battery reported six 12-pdr Napoleons. Although a return was filed, and some equipment and small arms were recorded, the battery had temporarily turned in those guns.
  • Battery B: At Winchester, Virginia with six 10-pdr Parrotts.  Captain John V. Keeper in command of this battery supporting Second Division, Eighth Corps, or Middle Department if you prefer.
  • Battery C: At Stafford Court House, Virginia with six 10-pdr Parrotts. Captain Wallace Hill commanded this battery. Through the winter, the battery remained part of Third Division, Eleventh Corps.  Before the spring campaigns, the battery became part of the consolidated Eleventh Corps Artillery.
  • Battery D: At Winchester, Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. Captain  John Carlin commanded this battery which was also in Second Division, Eighth Corps.
  • Battery E: At Romney, (West) Virginia with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.Under Captain Alexander C. Moore this battery supported Campbell’s Fourth Brigade, First Division, Eighth Corps.
  • Battery F: Again, Company C, 6th (West) Virginia Infantry and carried on a line below.  Reporting at Martinsburg, Virginia, with six 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. Captain Thomas A. Maulsby commanded the battery, supporting Third Brigade, First Divsion, Eighth Corps.
  • Battery G: At Beverly, 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, Eighth Corps.

Battery H is not mentioned on the report, as it would not be formed until January 1864.

Turning to the ammunition, starting with smoothbores:

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As Battery A had apparently temporarily, at least, turned in its cannon, only one battery had smoothbore guns on hand:

  • Battery G: 182 shot, 140 case, and 56 canister for 6-pdr field guns.

Turning to the ammunition for rifled guns, we often associate Hotchkiss with the 3-inch Ordnance Rifles.  Such is the case here:

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Three batteries reporting:

  • Battery D: 304 canister, 486 percussion shell, 240 fuse shell,  and 250 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery E: 142 canister, 357 percussion shell,  and 836 fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery F: 414 canister, 549 percussion shell, 450 fuse shell, and 1857 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

And on the next page, we can focus just on the Parrott columns:

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And those batteries:

  • Battery B: 873 shell, 614 case, and 334 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery C: 810 shell, 270 case, and 114 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Battery G: 105 shell for 10-pdr Parrott.

No quantities of Schenkl or Tatham’s reported on hand for the quarter.

So we can move on to the small arms:

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By battery:

  • Battery A: Fifteen Army revolvers and eighty-five cavalry sabers.
  • Battery B: Seventeen Navy revolvers and fourty-eight horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery C: Ten Navy revolvers and nine cavalry sabers.
  • Battery D: Thirty Army revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery E: Twenty-nine Army revolvers and thirty horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F: Twenty-five Gallagher carbines, twenty-five .58-caliber pistol carbines, seven Navy revolvers, and seventy-five cavalry sabers.
  • Battery G: Seventeen Army revolvers.

Other than Battery F’s odd assortment of small arms, not many surprises here.

We have two more sections before closing the first quarter of 1863 and will be looking to Vermont and Wisconsin in turn.