Summary Statement, 3rd Quarter, 1863 – Kentucky’s batteries

Battery returns from Kentucky must have posed problems for the clerks at the Ordnance Department.  Not only was there conflicts with the designations – what with a numbered and lettered designation system being used to reference the same batteries – but even getting established how many different batteries existed seemed to be an issue.  At the end of 1862, two entry lines left little but confusion.  For the first quarter of 1863, the clerks listed two of the three batteries then on active service.   And the second quarter of 1863 gave the same two batteries, out of what was then four batteries, with some designation cross-ups (along with two sections reported with infantry regiments).  But things look better for the third quarter of 1863:

0257_1_Snip_KY

Four batteries, out of what was then five batteries, plus a “section” from an infantry regiment.  That “section” actually had more guns than many real batteries!  So let us dive into the administrative details:

  • 1st Battery (or Battery A):  At Murfreesboro with two 6-pdr field guns, two 3-inch Ordnance Rifles, and two 3.80-inch James Rifles.  Captain Theodore S. Thomasson remained in command.  And the battery remained at Murfreesboro as unassigned artillery in the Army of the Cumberland.
  • 2nd Battery (or Battery B): No return.  Captain John M. Hewett’s battery detached from Second Division, Fourteenth Corps to support the 1st Michigan Engineers and Mechanics at Elk River Bridge, Tennessee. An army return from late September 1863 indicated four artillery pieces were at the bridge, presumably all Hewett’s.  A wartime photo shows this bridge rivaled the famous “cornstalks and beanpoles” Potomac Creek Bridge of Virginia.

ElkRiverBridge_small

  • 3rd Battery (or Battery C):  Not listed.  While organizing, earlier in the spring, the battery was captured (and paroled) when Confederates raided Lebanon, Kentucky, thus setting things back a bit.  Formally, the battery did not muster until September 1863.  The battery remained at Louisville, Kentucky through the fall.  Captain John W. Neville in command, the battery was assigned to First Division, Twenty-Third Corps.
  • Battery D: This battery never completed organization. I include here just to avoid the question, “what about Battery D?”
  • Battery E: At Camp Nelson, Kentucky, with no artillery.  Captain John J. Hawes commanded this brand new battery, formally mustered on October 6, 1863.
  • Simmonds’ Independent Battery, also 1st Kentucky Independent Battery: No location given, but with six 10-pdr Parrotts. This was Captain Seth J. Simmonds’ battery and was stationed at Gauley Bridge, West Virginia through the late summer.  The battery was assigned to Scammon’s Division, Department of West Virginia.  In late September the battery moved to Camp Toland, Charleston, West Virginia.  The battery remained active, supporting various scouting operations and expeditions in the department.
  • Company G(?), 14th Kentucky Infantry: At Louisa, Kentucky, with four 6-pdr field guns, two 12-pdr field howitzers, and two 3.80-inch James Rifles… yes, quite a battery in that infantry regiment!  Colonel George W. Gallup’s regiment was posted to Louisa as part of the Twenty-Third Corps.  Remaining behind during the Knoxville Campaign, the regiment formed into the District of Eastern Kentucky.  Though I don’t have any other details as to this “section” of artillery within the regiment.

Though we still have a mix, and mess, of designations, the clerks had made progress documenting the Kentucky batteries.

Turning to the ammunition on hand, we start as usual with the smoothbore:

0259_1_Snip_KY

Two lines to consider:

  • 1st Battery: 320 shot, 180 case, and 111 canister for 6-pdr field guns.
  • 14th Infantry: 532 shot, 358 case, and 295 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 56 case and 11 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.

One battery with 3-inch rifles, so one line on the Hotchkiss page:

0259_2_Snip_KY

  • 1st Battery: 75 canister, 80 percussion shell, 80 fuse shell, and 160 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

We’ll break up the next page for clarity, starting with one additional entry for Hotchkiss:

0260_1A_Snip_KY

  • 1st Battery: 40 canister for 3.80-inch James rifles.

And speaking of James, we have entries for James patent projectiles:

0260_1B_Snip_KY

  • 1st Battery: 12 shot and 66 shell for 3.80-inch James Rifles.
  • 14th Infantry: 26 shot, 49 shell, and 36 canister for James Rifles.

Out in West Virginia, there were six Parrotts manned by Kentuckians, so we find Parrott patent projectiles:

0260_1C_Snip_KY

  • Simmonds’ Battery: 1504 shell and 265 canister for 10-pdr Parrotts.

Simmonds’ Battery reported a large quantity of shells on hand in previous quarters.  So this is no quarterly aberration.

Turning to the Schenkl projectiles:

0260_2_Snip_KY

Two batteries reporting:

  • 1st Battery: 250 Schenkl shell for 3.80-inch James Rifles.
  • Simmonds’ Battery: 69 Schenkl shell for 10-pdr Parrott.

And off to the right, we see an entry for Tatham’s canister:

  • 1st Battery: 110 canister for 3.80-inch rifles.

Closing up Kentucky’s batteries, we have the small arms reported:

0260_3_Snip_KY

Just two reporting:

  • 1st Battery: Fourteen Navy revolvers, ten cavalry sabers, and twenty-five horse artillery sabers.
  • Simmonds’ Battery: Twenty-four Army revolvers and ten cavalry sabers.

Next up, we turn to the Kansas batteries… you see, while the clerks were struggling with their accounting of Kentucky’s cannon, they were hard pressed to keep things alphabetical!

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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, 1st Quarter, 1863 – Kentucky and Kansas Batteries

The entries offered in the summary statements for the Kentucky and Kansas batteries have less precise identities than those for other states.  We might call it sloppy clerical work.  Or perhaps the imprecise entries point to a larger issue – that of organizing a massive army, spread across a continent, in short order.  Just getting the designations to comply with standard conventions was a reach.  The snip of the first page illustrates the lack of those conventions:

0108_1_Snip_KY_KS

Looking first to Kentucky (because the clerks didn’t use alphabetical order!), we see two entries and those for the 1st and 2nd Kentucky.  Wartime correspondence of the time-period in question use lettered and numbered batteries, with some irritating interchangeability.  And, there was a third, independent, battery mentioned usually by the commander’s name.  That said, let me look at the conundrum from the reverse angle.  These are the batteries mentioned in Dyer’s Compendium, as a starting point:

  • Battery A:  Captain David C. Stone’s battery was assigned to First Division, Fourteenth Corps at the start of the new year. Later in the spring, the battery was detached, being unassigned and serving in the garrison of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.  In May, 1st Lieutenant Theodore S. Thomasson was promoted to Captain and appointed commander of the “1st Kentucky Battery”, still listed by some sources as Stone’s Battery.  So this is likely the battery indicated as “1st Battery” on the summary.  And for simplicity, I’ll refer to them as 1st Kentucky through the remainder of this post.  No ordnance listed for this battery in the reporting period.
  • Battery B: This was Captain John M. Hewett’s battery.  Hewett was captured in July 1862 and did not return to the battery until March 1863.  Lieutenant Alban A. Ellsworth commanded in his absence.  The battery was assigned to Second division, Fourteenth Corps.  And this battery is often cited as 2nd Battery Kentucky Light Artillery.  However, the listing in the summary is clearly referencing a different battery.  I submit Hewett’s Battery escaped the clerk’s tally.
  • Battery C: Not organized until May 1863.  So this battery should not concern us for first quarter, 1863.
  • Battery D: Never completed organization, so we need not worry about this battery.
  • Battery E: Not organized until October-December 1863.
  • Simmond’s 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 through the winter and early spring of 1863.  Under reorganizations, the battery became part of 3rd Division, Eighth Corps.  Given the place location referenced, the clerks referenced Simmond’s as the 2nd Kentucky Battery.  I will use Simmond’s here for clarity.  The battery reported six 10-pdr Parrotts.

As you can see, the lax administrative details lead to lengthy explanations 150 years later.

As for Kansas, we see five batteries listed.  All are by commander’s name or reference non-artillery parent units:

  • Allen’s Battery: I think this references Captain Norman Allen and the 1st Kansas Independent Battery. At the first of the year, Allen’s was part of the garrison in Springfield, Missouri. Later in the spring the battery moved to Fort Scott.  So the reporting location of Lawrence, Kansas is problematic.  The battery reported six 10-pdr Parrotts.
  • 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. At the start of the year, the battery was in the Department of Northwest Arkansas, at Van Buren on the Arkansas River.  Later in the spring the battery moved to Fort Gibson, in the Cherokee Nation (and that post was briefly named Fort Blunt, as the ledger indicates).
  • 2nd Cavalry: A section in the regiment reported two 12-pdr mountain howitzers. The section was with the regiment at Springfield, Missouri.  Lieutenant Elias S. Stover is listed as the section commander.
  • 9th Cavalry:  A section under Lieutenant Henry H. Opedyke, reporting two 12-pdr mountain howitzers.  The section’s reported location was Trading Post, Kansas on the Marais des Cygnes River.

As you can see, it is possible to “square” the summary entries for Kansas with units listed from other sources. For clarity, for this post I’ll use the same designations indicated on the summary for the Kansas batteries instead of the (perhaps more proper) numerical designations.

Turning now to the ammunition on hand, as per the format we see the smoothbore projectiles on hand first:

0110_1_Snip_KY_KS

Kentucky:

  • 1st Battery: Though they reported no guns, they had 28 spherical case for 6-pdr field guns.  Go figure.

Kansas:

  • Blair’s Battery:  146 shot, 200 case, and 100 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 46 shell, and 74 case for 12-pdr howitzers; 120 case and 98 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers. (As mentioned in earlier posts, the latter column was often used for both field and mountain howitzer canister tallies.)
  • 2nd Kansas Cavalry:  55 case and 8 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers.
  • 9th Kansas Cavalry: 41 shell, 116 case, and 57 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers.

None of the batteries reported Hotchkiss projectiles on hand.  And from the next page of rifled projectiles, only Parrotts were on hand:

0111_1_Snip_KY_KS

For those Parrott columns:

  • Simmond’s Battery: 1000 shell, 575 case, and 137 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • Allen’s Battery: 804 shell, 228 case, and 152 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.

The next page, for Schenkl’s and Tatham’s projectiles, is blank. so we can move directly to the small arms:

0111_3_Snip_KY_KS

By battery:

  • Simmond’s Battery: Nine Army revolvers and thirty-three cavalry sabers.
  • Allen’s Battery: 100 Navy revolvers and ten cavalry sabers.
  • Blair’s Battery: 134 Navy revolvers and twenty-four cavalry sabers.
  • Hopkins’ Battery: Fifty-one Navy revolvers.
  • 2nd Kansas Cavalry section: Seven Navy revolvers and one cavalry saber.
  • 9th Kansas Cavalry section: One cavalry saber.

Yes, I’d expect to see more small arms reported from the sections in the cavalry.  But the large number of pistols in the other Kansas artillery formations makes up for that, somewhat.  The Kentucky gunners defending Gauley Bridge had ample Parrott shells around, and were without need of many small arms.