Summary Statement, 4th Quarter, 1863 – 2nd Missouri Artillery

I hesitate to apply the designation “Light” artillery to the 2nd Missouri Artillery, at least not as it existed at the end of 1863. As chronicled in earlier posts, this regiment had an unconventional organizational history in many regards. Starting in the late summer of 1863, the regiment was reorganized, from the section up, with the aim of forming all into field artillery batteries. However, that process took time. And at the close of 1863, only four batteries were equipped and serving as field artillery. The remainder, if they were indeed reorganized, served as heavy artillery. We’ll look at their story in this “snapshot” view that the summaries provide.

Lieutenant-Colonel Nelson Cole remained in command of the regiment, and would receive promotion to full colonel in February 1864. In December, his second in command was Major Frank Backof. However, Backof was shortly dismissed from service in early 1864 (a story I hope to detail in a follow up post). As the regiment was still reforming, there was little to report in the way of “on hand” cannon and stores. Just the four “reorganized” field batteries mentioned above:

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But there’s more to the regimental’s December status than those four lines, as we fill in the gaps:

  • Battery A: No report. This battery was the consolidation of the old Batteries C and D and remained at Cape Girardeau, manning Fort B as heavy artillery. The battery was part of the District of St. Louis. Captain John E. Strodtman commanded. Men from Battery C (below) were also under his command. Not until June was the battery reorganized as light artillery.
  • Battery B:  No report. This battery moved from St. Louis in early December and was stationed at Fort No. 4 defending New Madrid, Missouri by the end of the month. Captain John J. Sutter remained in command.  The posting, as heavy artillery, was part of the extended District of St. Louis.
  • Battery C:  No report. The new Battery C was formed from the old batteries H and I.  Captain Frederick W. Fuchs, formerly Company I, commanded the new battery.  This new battery was stationed at Cape Girardeau, consolidated with Battery A at the time, as heavy artillery.  The battery waited until May to reorganize as light artillery.
  • Battery D: Reporting from DeValls Bluff, Arkansas with two 12-pdr field howitzers and two 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. The battery reorganized in September at St. Louis with the consolidation of old Batteries A, F, G, K, and M. Most of the first three batteries had mustered out in St. Louis. What remained was a large “section” reformed at that place. The “old” batteries K and M were at Little Rock and consolidated into the “new” Battery D.  The battery was assigned to 1st Cavalry Division, Army of Arkansas. Those sections from the old Batteries K and M served at DeValls Bluff, protecting the railroad line to Little Rock. Captain Charles Schareff commanded.  The St. Louis section, under Lieutenant Frederick W. von Bodengen served detached with the 1st Nebraska Cavalry. Bodengen’s section left St. Louis on December 3, moving through Rolla, West Plains, and finally to Bateville, Arkansas on the 25th.
  • Battery E: Reporting at Little Rock, Arkansas with six 3.67-inch bronze rifles.  Reorganized from parts of old Batteries E, L, and M, under Captain Gustave Stange (old Battery M) during the fall.  The battery served in 1st Cavalry Division, Department of Arkansas. 
  • Battery F: At Woodville, Alabama with four 12-pdr field howitzers.  Captain Clemens Landgraeber’s First Missouri Flying Artillery transferred into the regiment during the reorganization.  The battery supported First Division, Fifteenth Corps. In October, the battery supported their division during operations on the Memphis & Charleston Railroad (part of the relief of Chattanooga). In November, they participated in fighting around Lookout Mountain and the advance on the Federal right onto Missionary Ridge. After the relief of Knoxville, the battery moved with its parent formation into winter quarters.
  • Battery G: At St. Louis with one 3.67-inch bronze rifle.  The battery reformed on November 15 and stationed at Fort No. 3, in St. Louis, Captain William T. Arthur commanded.
  • Battery H: No return. A new Battery H formed out of men (new and old enlistments) at Springfield, Missouri on December 4, 1863, under command of Captain William C. Montgomery (formerly of the Missouri State Cavalry). The battery was initially part of a heavy artillery battalion formed at Springfield.
  • Battery I: No return. The new Battery I began reforming on December 28 at Springfield.  Captain Stephen H. Julian commanded.  Initially, the battery was designated heavy artillery.
  • Battery K: No return. A new Battery K was formed in January at Springfield, Missouri with Captain William P. Davis in command. The battery was also organized initially as heavy artillery.
  • Battery L: No return.  A new Battery L formed at Sedalia, Missouri in January 1864 and was formerly the 1st Battery, Missouri State Militia.  So we will see them accounted for under the “miscellaneous” portion of Missouri’s returns in this quarter. Captain Charles H. Thurber commanded.
  • Battery M: No return. The new Battery M organized at Fort No. 2, St. Louis, on February 15, 1864, and thus escapes our summary for this quarter.  Captain Napoleon Boardman would command this battery.

Of note, the battalion of heavy artillery, consisting of Batteries H, I, and K, came under the command of Major John W. Rabb, formerly of the 2nd Indiana Battery. This arrangement remained until the spring of 1864 when the batteries were reorganized (again) as light batteries.

Turning to back to the summary, we have ammunition to account for, starting with smoothbore rounds:

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  • Battery D: 113 shell and 77 case for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • Battery F: 288 shell and 197 case for 12-pdr field howitzers.

The smoothbore columns continue on the next page:

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  • Battery D: 43 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • Battery F: 84 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.

For the Hotchkiss columns to the right, two entries:

  • Battery D: 61 time fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery E: 240 time fuse shell for 3.67-inch rifles.

More Hotchkiss on the next page:

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  • Battery D: 115 percussion fuse shell, 102 bullet shell, and 80 canister for 3-inch rifles.
  • Battery E: 120 percussion fuse shell, 720 bullet shell, and 120 canister for 3.67-inch rifles.

No other projectiles reported by the 2nd Missouri batteries in this quarter, so we turn to the small arms:

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  • Battery D: Fourteen Colt army revolvers, eight Colt navy revolvers, twelve Remington army revolvers, and twelve horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery E: Twelve Colt navy revolvers, thirty-five Remington navy revolvers, thirteen cavalry sabers, and twenty-nine horse artillery sabers.
  • Battery F: Eighteen Colt navy revolvers and seventy-two cavalry sabers.
  • Battery G: Two Springfield .58-caliber muskets, thirteen Colt army revolvers, and thirteen horse artillery sabers.

From there, we turn to the columns for pistol ammunition, fuses, powder, and primers:

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  • Battery D: 1,000 army caliber and 1,000 navy caliber pistol cartridges; and 1,000 friction primers.
  • Battery E: 1,400 navy caliber pistol cartridges.
  • Battery F: 1,200 navy caliber pistol cartridges.
  • Battery G: 1,000 navy caliber pistol cartridges (perhaps a transcription error?).

While the 2nd Missouri was not engaged in many pitched battles or heavy combat, its stories from outside the battlefield continue to fascinate me. They certainly kept the clerks busy.

Next we’ll look at the Missouri State Militia batteries that were in service along with some of the artillery sections serving with the state’s cavalry.

Summary Statement, 4th Quarter, 1863 – Iowa’s Batteries

Iowa became a state just a decade and a half prior to the outbreak of the Civil War. In those antebellum years, Iowa transitioned from a frontier state into one with a growing industrialization, all the while retaining its strong agrarian base (which is still there to this day). While not a populous state, Iowa sent over 10% of its population into uniform for the war (76,242 men in arms out of a total population of 674,913 in 1860). And of that total, we have focused on the story of four batteries and one attached artillery section within the scope of these summaries. For the fourth quarter, 1863, summary, the clerks at the Ordnance Department tallied three batteries and the attached section. They omitted the 4th Iowa Battery, which had just mustered in November.

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  • 1st Iowa Battery: Reporting from Woodville, Alabama with one 12-pdr field howitzer and three 10-pdr Parrotts. Captain Henry H. Griffiths commanded, however he also served as division artillery chief and also departed in December on recruiting duty.  In his place Lieutenants William H. Gay led the battery. The battery remained with First Division, Fifteenth Corps, participating in the relief of Chattanooga in November. Afterwards, the battery followed its parent formation into winter quarters in northern Alabama.  The armament listed is noteworthy. The battery reported its long-serving smoothbores were worn out. And starting in December they received new Parrott rifles.
  • 2nd Iowa Battery: Reporting at LaGrange, Tennessee with two 6-pdr field guns and two 12-pdr field howitzers. As Captain Nelson T. Spoor served as division artillery chief, Lieutenant Joseph R. Reed led this battery. The battery remained with Third Division, Fifteenth Corps, and moved to Memphis with that formation in early November.  As part of the movement toward Chattanooga, the battery was assigned to the garrison guarding the railroad lines in vicinity of LaGrange. And with that assignment, the battery transferred to the First Division, Sixteenth Corps.
  • 3rd Iowa Battery: At Little Rock, Arkansas with two 6-pdr field guns, two 12-pdr field howitzers, one 3-inch Ordnance Rifle, and one 10-pdr Parrott. Captain Mortimer M. Hayden remained in command, but served in staff positions. Lieutenant Melville C. Wright led the battery in his absence.  The battery served in the Third Division, Department of Arkansas (which would become the Seventh Corps later in 1864). After accompanying an expedition to Arkadelphia, the battery returned to Little Rock and remained there through the winter.
  • 4th Iowa Battery:  Not listed.  Captain Philip H. Goode’s battery mustered on September 24, 1863. They had two 12-pdr Napoleons and four 3-inch Ordnance Rifles. The battery’s first assignment was to the Department of the Northwest. But that was a short posting. By February the battery was moving to St. Louis, with New Orleans as their ultimate destination.
  • Section attached to 2nd Cavalry –  At Collierville, Tennessee with two 12-pdr Napoleons, two 12-pdr mountain howitzers, and two 10-pdr Parrotts. However, I think, based on the ammunition reported, the section had two 12-pdr field howitzers instead of the Napoleons. And section? Well, more like a battery.   Recall from our discussion in the previous quarter, Lieutenant Perry L. Reed is mentioned in charge of two howitzers in a dispatch from November.  So he is likely the officer in charge of these cannon. Still, that’s a lot of cannon for a bunch of cavalrymen to handle. The 2nd Iowa Cavalry was part of the First Cavalry Division, Sixteenth Corps and operated in the Memphis area at this time of the war.

We have a majority of smoothbore cannon in the aggregate, so we have a lot of smoothbore rounds to talk about:

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  • 2nd Battery: 57 shot and 42 case for 6-pdr field guns; 74 shell and 20 case for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • 3rd Battery: 175 shot and 165 case for 6-pdr field guns; 109 shell and 156 case for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • 2nd Cavalry: 94 shell and 163 case for 12-pdr field howitzers; 192 shell and 192 case for 12-pdr mountain howitzer. (The ammunition tallies are why I suggested the 2nd Cavalry had howitzers vice Napoleons).

Continuing smoothbore ammunition totals on the next page:

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  • 2nd Battery: 80 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 60 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • 3rd Battery: 60 canister for 6-pdr field guns; 32 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers.
  • 2nd Cavalry: 52 canister for 12-pdr field howitzers; 276 canister for 12-pdr mountain howitzers.

To the right is one entry of Hotchkiss rifled projectiles:

  • 3rd Battery: 40 Hotchkiss time fuse shell for 3-inch rifles.

More Hotchkiss on the next page:

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  • 3rd Battery: 40 Percussion fuse shell and 60 bullet shell for 3-inch rifles.

Next we have Parrott projectiles:

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  • 1st Battery: 218 shell, 6 case, and 3 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.
  • 3rd Battery: 130 shell, 99 case, and 45 canister for 10-pdr Parrott.

No quantities on the next page, so we move to the small arms:

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  • 1st Battery: Eleven cavalry sabers.
  • 2nd Battery: Four cavalry sabers.
  • 3rd Battery: Three Colt navy revolvers, two cavalry sabers, and nine horse artillery sabers.

Not much in the way of cartridges:

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  • 3rd Battery: 50 cartridge bags for 3-inch rifles.
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  • 3rd Battery: 50 paper fuses; 1,000 friction primers; and 1,000 percussion caps.
  • 2nd Cavalry: 360 friction primers.

That rounds out our look at the status of the Iowa batteries, as they were in December 1863… at least according to the Ordnance Department. Next up… the not-well-known Indian Home Guard Brigade.