Seriously wounded at the Battle of Shiloh on 7 April 1862 after he had taken over command of the Battalion. Bird had enlisted as 1st Lieutenant in Company I of the 1st Florida Infantry. He was later wounded and captured at the Battle of Perryville, Kentucky in October 1862. Later in the war he served as Colonel & Judge Advocate on Beauregard's Staff. After the war he worked as a farmer and and attorney in Monticello, Florida. He also served as United States Marshal, Florida State Senator and Florida State Treasurer.
The 1st Florida Infantry is sometimes called a Regiment, other times called a Battalion. Below is the report of the 1st Florida, mentioning Cpt. Bird, and him taking command of the unit on the 2nd day of the Battle of Shiloh:
HEADQUARTERS FLORIDA BATTALION,
April 12, 1862.
GENERAL: In accordance with your circular of the 11th of this month I have the honor to make the following report:
In the first place it becomes a painful duty to record the fall of Maj. T. A. McDonell, being seriously wounded early in the action of the 6th, whereupon the command immediately devolved upon me.
Pressing forward, we gained the valley opposite and close to the first camp of the enemy, and in the first charge lost several of my command in killed and wounded. I then joined the brigade at the second camp and was ordered forward to support a portion of our advance columns. The advance having fallen back placed us in front, where for some time we were exposed to a galling fire from the enemy. It was at this time that our battalion suffered most. First Lieut. L. M. Anderson, of Company A (commanding), was shot in the forehead and instantly killed, and, the company being without a commander, I ordered Second Lieut. E. C. Stevens, of Company B, to the command. In a very few minutes he was also severely wounded. I then ordered First Lieut. Joseph D. Turner, of Company C, to take command.
Capt. T. S. Means and First Lieut. J. T. Miller, of Company B, and Second Lieutenant Tucker, of Company C, and Lieut. O. P. Hull, commanding Company D (since dead), were wounded. Several non-commissioned officers and privates were also killed and wounded while under this fire.
I then withdrew the battalion, by order, to the protection of a section of the Washington Artillery Battery. Forming with the brigade we again advanced and assisted in routing a portion of the enemy's forces that had taken position in an encampment on our left. My command then, with a portion of the brigade, proceeded forward as far as within range of the heavy guns on the Tennessee River, where we were for some time exposed to the enemy's shells. One or two of my command were either killed or mortally wounded while under this fire. We then fell back to the enemy's camp and bivouacked during the night.
On the morning of the 7th, being too hoarse to take command of the battalion, I turned it over to Capt. W. C. Bird, of Company C.
Accompanying this report will be found a list of the killed, wounded, and missing of each company.(*)
All of which is most respectfully submitted.
W. G. POOLE,
Senior Captain, Commanding Florida Battalion.