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  1. Today
  2. Katherine Welcome! Wishing you every success in finding the information you seek. This particular topic was an attempt to identify five Confederate officers in a photograph, possibly taken at Knoxville Tennessee about November 1861. Linus A. McClung may be one of the officers in the image, but that remains merely conjecture. As far as I know, none of us have uncovered a certified image of Linus McClung (or any other member of the McClung family, circa 1860, to use as comparison.) All I am able to provide is the following link, to The McClung Genealogy: http://archive.org/stream/mcclunggenealog00mcclgoog#page/n143/mode/2up/search/Linus McClung Genealogy at archive.org All the best Ozzy
  3. Wood's Brigade - What Artillery Battalion?

    I ran across this group in looking for information about my family history. I am a descendent of Captain Linus Anderson Mcclung. He died from wounds from Perryville days after being injured. He also had two brothers that served. Col Francis Barclay Mcclung and William Mcclung. They both survivedthe war. Do you know of any pictures of them? They were my grandfather's great uncles. Francis is buried in the Reynolds Cemetery in Glen Wilton, Va. Will died in San Francisco defending Lillian Coit from a attacker. His wife and her were friends. I am vert interested in anything about them and their service.
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  6. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    On pages 465-6 of The Signal Corp in the War of the Rebellion, JW Brown (1896), is recorded the following: "While the army was encamped between Pittsburg Landing and Corinth, General George H. Thomas had occasion to visit the HQ of General William Tecumseh Sherman, near Monterey. A portion of the command occupied a prominent hill three or four miles in the advance. As it was desirable to maintain close communications with this exposed force, General Thomas inquired of General Sherman, 'Where is your Signal Corps? Why do you not have it working from here to the troops before Monterey?' 'A Signal Corps?' asked Sherman. 'What is that?' 'Well,' said General Thomas, 'I have one, and will send it to you to-morrow to work from here to there.' True to his promise, General Thomas sent Lieutenants Taylor, Kelly, Bachtell and Hollopeter to establish the desired line. A clump of trees was found to interfere with the view. A detail of men soon cut through the woods and enabled the officers to open communications. The working of the system brought together a large body of officers and men to watch this novel method of [flag] telegraphing, the crowd ultimately becoming so large that a fence had to be constructed to prevent interference with the operators. This line continued in operation while the troops remained in vicinity." However, in a 28 May 1862 letter of Private Thomas Keen (1st Nebraska Infantry, on detached duty at Paducah for Signal training), he writes: "We have our horses now, but no saddles. I do not know when we will leave [Paducah]." Corinth was entered two days later (before the newly- trained signallers had opportunity to join the Army of the Tennessee.) And Henry Halleck disbanded the Signal Corps in the West in June, claiming "the nature of the terrain made use of that organization ineffective." The trained signallers from Paducah, upon arrival at Corinth, were ordered: "Return to your units." What was really going on? During the creation of the Signal Corps, it was determined that a "signal station" would consist of three members: an officer (to code and decode the messages); a flag-man (to send coded messages; and acknowledge receipt of messages from other stations); and an assistant (to help in sending messages; and identify/interpret signals sent from other stations.) Unfortunately, a team of three signallers usually came from three different regiments. And when their services were not immediately required, these men were physically with their regiments, performing whatever duties they were there assigned. The time required to gather up parties of signallers and send them where they were required was found to be excessive. Then, there is the claim, "the nature of the terrain prevented effective use of the Signal Corps" (which many interpret as, "the trees were too thick.") Yet, towers, and "crow's nest" in tree tops had always been possible (and considering the slow nature of Halleck's advance, plenty of time was available for constructing towers.) Unknown to many, Henry Halleck extended a telegraph line with him during the Crawl to Corinth. Most often, U. S. Grant's headquarters were close by the southern end of that line (see Papers of US Grant vol.5, pages 110-1, 117 and 125. As early as 6 May 1862, General Grant sent a telegram "from near Monterey" to McClernand, regarding Captain Hawkins needing to "come forward and provide Commissary support.") It is my belief that Halleck, "couldn't be bothered" with Flagmen, when mounted couriers and the telegraph line "suited his needs, just fine." [Although Halleck ordered the Signal Corps disbanded, Buell continued to use his trained signallers after he departed Corinth, heading east.] Always more to the story... Ozzy References: http://archive.org/stream/signalcorpsusain00brow#page/468/mode/2up (see pages 460-466.) http://www.nebraskahistory.org/publish/publicat/history/full-text/NH2000MyDuty.pdf Letters of Thomas Keen (see page 12) http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Journals/MOLLUS/Kansas_Commandery/The_Acting_Signal_Corps*.html Signal Corps operation http://www.civilwarsignals.org/lessons/sigmethod/cushing.html Signal Corps lessons http://digital.library.msstate.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/USG_volume/id/17896/rec/1 Papers of US Grant (see pages 110, 117, 125 & 112.)
  7. Epic Trek 2017: Update

    I'm in for the Sunday hike, also.
  8. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    sad to learn he survived the war only to be killed by a horse thief not long after coming home..
  9. Epic Trek 2017: Update

    I intend to lead a Not-So-Epic hike covering the advance of Trabue's Brigade on the First Day. We will meet at the Tennessee State Monument near Water Oaks Pond at 9:00 am on Sunday, November 12. From there, we will move to Crescent Field, then on to Tablets 448 and 469. We will bushwack across a branch of Tilghman Creek, arriving at a bluff overlooking the Cavalry Road bridge over Tilghman and will proceed on to Tablet 449. After discussing the actions of Trabue's Brigade there, I must confess that I am uncertain what to do next. If the weather is good and we are feeling energetic, then we will cross Cloud Field to the Indian Mounds, where Trabue's Brigade was briefly located late on April 6 and then return to Water Oaks Pond. If we are feeling less than energetic, then, from Tablet 449, we will return to Water Oaks Pond using the Corinth Road. I estimate the distance of the shorter hike to be about two miles. I do not intend to lead this peregrination if it is raining that morning.
  10. UDC Monument Rededication

    Just to illustrate how "connections are to be found in the most unexpected places..." On page 55 of the Minutes of the 24th Annual Convention of the UDC (mentioned above), among the names of office-holders of the different chapters of the organization, is "Mrs. Augusta Inge -- Honorary President of the Corinth Chapter No.333." It turns out, Mrs. Inge had quite a story to tell... Residing in Corinth at the commencement of the Rebellion, her husband, William Murphy Inge, joined the 12th Mississippi Infantry, and was away "fighting for Southern Independence" ...when the Confederate Army from Bowling Green -- what was left of it after the disaster at Fort Donelson -- arrived in town; and the Commanding General needed a place to stay. Major Inge returned to Corinth on furlough, and offered use of his home to General Albert Sidney Johnston; and the General accepted. In gratitude, General Johnston offered Major Inge a position on his Staff; William Inge politely declined, explaining he had already accepted a position on the Staff of Brigadier General Charles Clark (see DW Reed's, The Battle of Shiloh and the Organizations Engaged, page 42.) Mrs. Inge acted as hostess to the visiting General; and later recalled: "It was a sad moment when the boys from the South moved out of Corinth, with bands playing, "Then You'll Remember Me" and "The Girl I Left Behind Me." General Johnston had a parting word of comfort for Mrs. Inge, before he rode away: "Madame, I am going out to fight for the protection of your home." But, the story does not end there. For the rest (including Augusta Evans Inge's role in collecting funds for the UDC Monument at Shiloh) read pages 73-77 of Otto Eisenschiml's booklet, The Story of Shiloh http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=uiug.30112047583494;view=1up;seq=85 (courtesy of hathitrust). Ozzy N.B. And Mrs. Inge was a witness to the return of General Johnston's body to Corinth on Monday 7 April; and became involved in "readying the body for the train journey to New Orleans" (mentioned in pages cited.)
  11. Epic Trek 2017: Update

    I'm holding out hope.........any color is going to look good to me. In Houston we only see fall colors in Hobby Lobby.
  12. This letter has been published, but I doubt it was been widely seen. It was published as part of a regular journal by the Pintlala Historical Association. Just a local historical journal type thing for the association which held monthly meetings and published the journal for its members in Pintlala, Alabama. Letter written by Cpt. Hugh William Henry, Company K, 22nd Alabama Infantry. Also a picture of Hugh Henry, seated center while a student at Princeton College, Class of 1851, and also a few images of his sword. “Corinth, Miss., April 10, 1862 Dear Father and Mother, I received yoru letter yesterday, the day after we reached here from the battlefield of the Tennessee river. I would give anything could I be with you now, even for a few days. I have so much tot ell you, and such great cause of joining in expressions of gratitude to the merciful God who has preserved us through so many dangers, and I felt dear Mother, through all those two days of danger and suffering, that it was the Lord’s hand that sustained us, and his shield that was over us; and oh, when I think of the many I saw fall on my right and left, I could not but feel that the prayers of our good mothers at home had found a hearing with the Merciful Father of us all. Just think of us then, Ben, Robert, and myself, being under perhaps the most terrible fire of musketry, rifles, boms, and rifled cannon, for two whole days, nearly the whole time, and that we escaped without harm. I assure you that we are not mindful of the gratittude we owe a Merciful Father, his protection and guidance. I wish I could give you an account of the battle. But forgive me if I pass over much of the horrible sufferings and dreadful scenes of the battlefield. The remembrance sickens me, and I know such things are not suited for you to hear of. I will try and give you some idea though of what we passed through, that you may know what great cause we have to return our thanks to the merciful God who has brought us out of it all unharmed. Last Thursday our Brigade received orders to cook five days’ rations and to march to Monterey. Owing to a delay in getting up the rations we only got two day’s provisions cooked, and the balance was loaded on a wagon. The wagon overturned and we lost three days’ rations. Some days we eat but a mouthful or two, and that such as we picked up in the Yankee camp, crackers, and raw ham. Of course we were half famished, and weak as water. The regiment marched out about four hundred strong. The first day we marched about twelve miles and camped beyond Monterey. That night it rained upon us all night nearly, and we were as wet and miserable as possible. The next morning it still rained, and we marched through the mud and water with a cold north wind blowing, only some three or four miles, and encamped on the side of the road in the mud. That night it hailed, rained and thundered all night long. At three in the morning we formed for an advance, the rain pouring down in torrents, and so dark that you could not see the man in front of you. There we waited till daylight, when we took up the march at about 10 A.M. We formed a line of battle in front of the yankee camp, and endeavorded to draw them out by skirmishers, but it was a no go. There was fighting all that day, Saturday, but our brigade was not in it. That night we lay on our arms. The next morning before breakfast, we advanced in line of battle on the enemy. Our Brigade, under Gen. Gladden, advanced upon a camp of Ohio volunteers. Our company was forty-two men, with noncommissioned officers. We got within one hundred yards of them before they opened fire upon us. Our company was in an open space, and they seemed to concentrate their fire upon us. The bullets, bombs, and cannon shot flying round us thick as hail. We were under this fire for half an hour, and lost one of our company; six killed and seven wounded. Our General lost an arm, our Major, R. B. Armistead, was killed. Col. Adams, who was next in command of the brigade was killed, and our officers fall in every direction. Our men waivered, of course, or course, under such a severe fire, but soon rallied, silenced the enemy’s battery, and our artillery coming up and playing into them, we charged, drove them out of their camps, and a half a mile beyond. Here they planted some batteries and shelled us hotly, the shell frequently bursting within a few feet of us. We had formed a square, thinking their cavalry was about to charge us, but the shall soon made us deploy into line again. Our company was now thrown forward to reconnoitre. We went up near enough to see them very plainly, even to their trimmings. They fired on us and we returned it, with good effect, too, I think, as there was a gun left there with all the horses killed. Our Brigade then advanced in line up the hill, the enemy retreating, but playing on us heavily with their cannon, the shell bursting all around us and the bullets cutting down our men now and then. We then were ordered to advance through an open field upon the enemy who were in an orcharg and some old houses. We soon drove them out down into a bottom, we lay down along the fence and fired for half an hour, they returning the fire. We then charged down the hill into a bottom, and lay down undre and aweful fire, returning it as best we could until we were ordered to cease, as we were firin on our own men. This was a mistake, as the Yankees soon advanced and the regiments giving away on our left, we had to run for a hundred yards or more under a severe fire, many of our officers falling and losing many of our men. We soon rallied, though, and a Tennessee regiment coming up on our right, we shoon charged and drove the enemy through their camps and back to the river. When we had them completely routed, had taken all their camps, any quantity of forage, provisions and clothing, most of their artillery and five thousand prisoners. Gen. Breckenridge’s brigade then pursued them and drove them on their boats. The gunboats now opened upon us with shell and the cannonade was terrible. The shell fell all amongst us, and we had to file down the hollow to avoid the fire. We had one poor fellow in our company struck by a shell; he was badly wounded; we carried him that night about a mile to where we encamped. We camped in their tents; they were riddled with balls, and as it rained all night they were not of much use in keeping out the rain. The Yankees threw shells at us during the night, but we slept soundly in spite of them. The next morning before we could get breakfast we were ordered to fall in; we formed and waited; the enemy opened on us with artillery, and our company was ordered forward to find their battery. We deployed and came near being surrounded and cut off by their cavalry; we retreated however to rejoin our regiment, but could not find it as it had been moved. A Lieutenant and two men who were sent ouf to show us the way back are either killed or taken. Our Colonel supposed that we were all taken. We then fell in with a Tennessee regiment to support two batteries; we were lying directly between them; the rifled cannon shot, grape, and shell, which flew thick and fast within a foot or two of our heads as we lay down frequently falling amongst us. It was the most terrible cannonade I ever heard; the earth trembled, and the bushes and trees were swept all around us close to the ground. We were ordered to charge the enemy when their fire became so severe that we were ordered to lie down. We were unable to return it, and had to lie there for half an hour, under a fire that had we stood up we would not had a man left. I lay behind a log and I could not count the bullets as they struck it above me. The cannon balls, too, came now and them amongst us unpleasantly near. After awhile the regiment on our right gave way and we were ordered to run. The enemy were then not more than forty yards rom us, and I expected that we would all be killed, as we had to run down into a hollow and up a hill, the enemy firing at us all the time. Here we lost two men wounded and probably taken prisoners. We then returned and found another Tennessee regiment and engaged the enemy. (Next few lines cut out). Here it was that Gen. Breckenridge seized the colors of a Louisiana regiment and advanced at its head. The enemy though, were too numerous and outflanked us all around. Our troops though, made a desperate stand and kept the enemyat bayuntil we had formed two lines of battle in the rea. They were exhausted and disorganized, and it was impossible for them to fight longer against the fresh troops the enemy were bringing in. The enemy though, seemed as well satisfied as they could be, and did not advance. This this last fight, Lieut. Myrick, our 2nd. Lieut, Capt. was badly wounded, and I took him to the rear. We had to go up a hill exposed to a very heavy fire, and I confess I had but little hopes of getting him or myself out either. Capt. Hart returned to see about Robert and the company, and I carried the Lieut. to the hospital. There they told us to on on as it was unsfafe. I had to lead him about two miles before we were out of danger, and before I could get him in a wagon. I finally got him in one, made him as comfortable as possible, and then went to get something to eat in a Yankee camp. While I was eating the wagon drove off and I was unable to find it again. My regiment coming along soon, I fell in that night, we marched through the mud knee deep, wading creeks and encamped at Monterey. We were unsheltered, and it poured down upon us all night, a most drenching rain which we had to lie and sleep in. The next day, Tuesday, we marched in here over the worst cut up road, through creeks and bogs, the most completely exhausted set of men there ever was. Our cavalry and artillery covered our retreat, and we came back in good order considering the disorganized condition of our troops. Our cavalry and John C. Breckenridge’s brigade are now at Monterey, and the enemy as I can learn are not advancing beyond their old lines. If it had not been for their gunboats we would have killed or captured their whole force on this side. J. C. Breckenridge fought like a lion. He is a glorious man, brave and without fear. He was dressed in a grey hunting shirt, with a slouched hat and seemed everywhere. Our Colonel distinguished himself; got two or three wounds and had two horses killed under him. Nearly all of our officers had their horses shot under them. Col. Deas was as cool as possible under the heaviest fire. He says it was much more terrible than Manassas. We fought Ohio, Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa and Illinois troops altogether, and I assure you they fired terribly with their best kind of weapons. The victory of Sunday cost us very dear; we have lost many a man of our most gallant officers. In our company, we lost, killed, Rabon Douglas, of Orion, J. H. Shaver, T. M. Greene, Fuller McLendon, W. H. Long, and Jas M. Wilson. Wounded, and come in, Henry Urquhart, David Gibson, B. S. Wilson, Hanibal McNeil, Joe Winters, Wm. Brown, Moses Dickey. Wounded and not brought in, A. J. Eilands, J. D. McLendon, Lieut. Myrick. Missing, George Athay and Sergeant S. A. Pilley. Our Company fought well, Capt. Hart made a hero of himself; Robert was as cool and calm as a man could be. Lieut. Myrick fought like a noble fellow—fell fighting bravely. Goodbye, Dear Mother, may a merciful Father spare us all to meet once more, if not on earth in Heaven Your affectionate Son, H. W. H.
  13. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    That is interesting that Eluctious Treadwell is buried at Elmwood. It is a huge cemetery, well over 30,000 graves, and I have numerous ancestors and relatives buried there myself. Birmingham is my home as well, born and raised, and I knew/know Treadwells at home. The ones I know are probably kin to Eluctious in some way no doubt. Small world.
  14. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    Shoddy weapons do not make for a confident fighting man. The 51st Tennessee Infantry was captured when Donelson fell. But, some of the men from the 51st were not captured and were assigned to the 52nd Tennessee during Shiloh. "On February 26, ten days after the fall of Fort Donelson, Colonel Benjamin Lea, of the 52nd Regiment, at Henderson Station, reported “I have under my command about 251 of the 51st Tennessee under Lieutenant Colonel Chester, for whom he has secured about 100 common sporting rifles, repaired and cleaned.” I have heard speculation before that the "less than stellar" performance of the 52nd Tennessee was due to inadequate firearms, among other things, that would erode the confidence of any force BEFORE the fighting started. As a veteran myself I can see this to be true. Under fire for the first time and your weapon is 2nd rate and you have no confidence in it? Yeah, I can see even the stoutest of hearts possibly running from battle when pressed in such a situation.
  15. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    Transylvania Thanks for sharing that anecdote IRT the Signal Corps at Pittsburg Landing... According to The Signal Corps in the War of the Rebellion, pages 460-1, Lieutenant Ludwick, Sergeant Kelly "and their party" arrived at Pittsburg Landing on April 6th, "and found General Grant was too much occupied to give them much attention. They made earnest efforts to open communication with General Buell, but without success. In the afternoon, General Nelson's [signal] officers came over and Lieutenant Ludwick offered them the assistance of his party." [Underline is mine -- Ozzy.] We know Tigress arrived at Pittsburg Landing after 8:30 a.m. and General Buell arrived at Pittsburg Landing at, or just before 2 p.m. Without knowing how long it would take for General Nelson to complete his march through the swamp, or where along the East bank Nelson's 4th Division would strike the river, U. S. Grant may have attempted to use Ludwick's party of signallers to find out where to send transport to carry Nelson's men across. Based on Lieutenant Ludwick's recollection, his party, "was without success" ...and must have abandoned their efforts with the arrival of Buell. This is unfortunate, and illustrates the teething problems encountered by the Signal Corps in the West, this early in the war. General Nelson, meanwhile, led a party of mounted men ahead of his marching troops, and appears to have reached the East bank of the Tennessee River between 4 - 4:30 p.m. Using the first available steamer, the Signal Corps was sent across (recorded as Lieutenants Hinson and Hart, and flagmen Henry Baker, Joseph Rush, John Stains and George Zecher.) "And in a few minutes, General Nelson and General Buell were communicating with each other." In summary, both the Army of the Ohio and the Army of the Tennessee had access to a Signal Corps on April 6th ...but it was too early in the war for either army to make efficient use of their teams of signalmen. Ozzy http://archive.org/stream/signalcorpsusain00brow#page/460/mode/2up The Signal Corps in the War of the Rebellion, JW Brown (1896) pages 460-1.
  16. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    In Johnny Green of the Orphan Brigade - The Journal of a Confederate Soldier, edited by A. D. Kirwan, John Green writes Daylight April 4th marched by Farmington & Monterey to a point near Shiloh Church. At Monterey was a black smith shop busy turning out old fashioned pikes to arm some of our troops who had no guns. I have not read of any accounts of Confederate pikemen being engaged at the Battle of Shiloh, although it is difficult to imagine such troops having any positive effect. Even given the enthusiasm for Seeing the Elephant present at the time of the battle, if I were armed with a pike, I don't think that I would be seeking to engage the Northern invader. I recall that Russell F. Weigley in his The Age of Battles: The Quest for Decisive Warfare from Breitenfeld to Waterloo stated that the British (or was it the English army?) had a substantial portion of pikemen as late as 1704, although I don't have the specific passage readily available. Green was enlisted in what was then the 5th Kentucky (CSA), later the 9th Kentucky, in the First Kentucky Brigade (Trabue's / Breckinridge's Reserve Corps) at Shiloh. (Two Kentucky regiments had claimed to be the 5th - the other one was officially designated the 5th Kentucky, so what was the 5th Kentucky at Shiloh was later designated the 9th Kentucky.)
  17. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    The Staff Ride Handbook for the Battle of Shiloh - 6-7 April, 1862 has The Army of the Ohio had better communications support than the Army of the Tennessee. In January, 1862, it activated a signal detachment , something the Army of the Tennessee would not do until November. As the first of Buell's troops, Nelson's Division, arrived at Pittsburg Landing, they brought part of the signal detachment with them, and soon Nelson could communicate with Buell via signal flags. While sending messages, Lieutenant HInson, the officer in charge of the detachment, noticed a mounted officer blocking the view. Hinson told the officer, "Git out of the way there; ain't you got no sense! Don't you see you're in the way?" The mounted officer quietly apologized and moved out of the way. The mounted officer was Grant. Make of the anecdote what you will.
  18. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    Even though the Signal Corps played only a minor role at Shiloh, it must be asked: "How did Buell's Army of the Ohio acquire their signallers?" The Civil War service of the U. S. Army Signal Corps may be said to have begun with General Orders No.32 of 15 June 1861; the ability to perform the roles required was further enhanced by General Orders No.21 of 26 February 1862 (which appropriated funds for training and equipment.) The Signal Corps originated "back East," and began work with the Army of the Potomac (with its own HQ at Georgetown, near Washington, D.C.) and Major Albert J. Myer -- who devised the flag system, including use of a turpentine torch for communicating at night -- acted as Senior Signal Officer of the organization. In December 1861, Don Carlos Buell, already alert to the practical uses of the telegraph and mounted couriers, sent a communication to Major Myer, requesting a detail of signallers be sent to him. A few weeks after Fort Donelson, five officers and ten men (under command of Lieutenant Jesse Merrill) arrived at Union-occupied Nashville for employment by the Army of the Ohio. Early on, it was envisioned that the Signal Corps would expand into an organization that controlled flag signals, light signals, coded messages, and the development of cryptographic keys. As well, there was talk of incorporating "artillery direction" (gunfire spotters)... and the balloon service. So, why did U. S. Grant not have a Signal Corps detachment assigned to the Army of the Tennessee? On March 10th 1862 it was decided to send two parties of trainers west: one went to General Benjamin Butler, Department of the Gulf, then at Ship Island Mississippi; the other party of three officers and six men went to Henry Halleck at St. Louis. This detachment, under Lieutenant J. B. Ludwick, was directed to set up a Signals School at Paducah; and orders went out to Halleck's District commanders to identify suitable candidates from across their commands for Signals Training. On April 6th, Lieutenant Ludwick and Signals-Sergeant James H. Kelly arrived aboard a steamer at Pittsburg Landing. [James Kelly later wrote a paper IRT his experience at Battle of Shiloh, and it is on file with University of North Carolina, Special Collections.] At some point, shortly after arrival, General Grant was informed of Halleck's orders; and Grant responded as quickly as the situation allowed. On April 8th, Ludwick and Kelly departed aboard a steamer, in company with two dozen officers and men who would spend the next five weeks in training at Paducah. Cheers Ozzy References: http://finding-aids.lib.unc.edu/05406/#d1e201 Papers of James H. Kelly at UNC Special Collections http://archive.org/stream/signalcorpsusain00brow#page/818/mode/2up The Signal Corps USA in the War of the Rebellion, J.W. Brown (1896). http://www.nebraskahistory.org/publish/publicat/history/full-text/NH2000MyDuty.pdf Private Thomas Keen, 1st Nebraska (one of the men selected for Signals) OR 5 pages 69-76: Report of Signal Corps Major A. J. Myer, detailing operations from June 1861 to October 1862.
  19. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    Tim As you suggest, Northern intelligence collection and the use of secure communications was evolving at the time of Battle of Shiloh, the Union having experimented with Hungarian as a coded language, and the Jessie Scouts as an instrument of intell collection. By the time of the Vicksburg Siege, the North had caught up to the South in this arena: Grenville Dodge was in place as "intelligence coordinator" in the West; and the "black arts" (along with their gray cousins) continued to evolve and improve over the course of the Civil War. Regards Ozzy References: http://shilohdiscussiongroup.com/topic/1711-grenville-dodge-spy-master/?tab=comments#comment-11492 Grenville Dodge http://www.civilwarsignals.org/pages/spy/pages/dodge.html Grenville Dodge at Signal Corps Association http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JY9afJ3moxg Civil War Signals, produced by NSA, runs for eight minutes and provides an introduction to the importance of the telegraph, signal flags (and nighttime lights), signal codes and cipher wheels, used in various forms by both sides during the Civil War. "and if the trees are in the way..." [Above image taken from The Signal Corps in the War of the Rebellion, J. W. Brown (1896).]
  20. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    FWIW - the following year signalling was used regularly during the Vicksburg siege. Of course the topography and timeline was much different.
  21. Signal Corps at Shiloh?

    A Signal Corps at Shiloh? Upon a close reading of that April 24th report (submitted to Lieutenant Samuel Tobey Cushing, leading Signal Corps instructor, then attached to the District of the Ohio) it appears that flag signals were used during the Battle of Shiloh, Day One, in the following way: Major General Buell steamed to Pittsburg Landing from Savannah, arriving just before 2 p.m. on April 6th. Following a brief meeting aboard Tigress with U. S. Grant, the Commanding General disappeared up the bluff, riding west; and General Buell was left behind in vicinity of the steamboat Landing (not knowing how long it would take Bull Nelson to forge his way across the swamp, to reach the eastern bank of the Tennessee River.) On horseback with a force of cavalry and "other essential staff officers," General Nelson rushed ahead of his marching 4th Division, and gained the bank of the Tennessee River before 5 p.m. And using the first available steamer, sent a team of Signal Corps Officers across to Pittsburg Landing, to set up a Signal Station (allowing General Buell to communicate directly via Signal Flags with General Nelson... and any other commanders attached to Army of the Ohio who struggled through the swamp.) What information could Buell have passed to Nelson? He had met General Grant. Grant told him Lew Wallace was expected on the battlefield "momentarily." Grant had sent Captain Hillyer with "a fleet" of steamboats to Savannah to bring up Crittenden's Division, by transport. Most importantly, Buell could have advised Bull Nelson that it was safe to bring his division across the river. (The first elements of Ammen's Brigade arrived at Pittsburg Landing in vicinity of 5:30 p.m.) The Army of the Ohio signal stations were maintained until Monday morning (probably to be ready, in case any further elements belonging to Buell found their way through the swamp.) Once it was determined that all subsequent arrivals were coming by steamer, the Signal Station on the East Bank (manned by Lieutenants Butler and Leonard) was shut down. And the Station on the Bluff overlooking Pittsburg Landing (Lieutenants Merrill and Hart) was shut down, and the personnel assigned to other duties. Of course, the loss of light following sunset would have put a halt to use of signal flags until dawn, next day. But "flag men" were also trained in use of "flashing lights." Would be interesting to find out if "burning torches" substituted for signal flags... or something else (similar to the nighttime lights used by Beauregard and Jordan when communicating with their spies at Washington, D.C. in 1861.) As for "trees being a problem," trees were common everywhere. And Signal Towers were erected... or heights occupied... or balloons put to use "back East." In the West, Henry Halleck put all his faith in the Telegraph, and the mounted courier. Short answer: "Yes. There was a Signal Corps, attached to the Army of the Ohio. And it found limited application at Shiloh." Ozzy References: OR 11 pages 295-6. http://www.civilwarsignals.org/lessons/sigmethod/cushing.html The Acting Signal Corps (with bio of Samuel T. Cushing and J. B. Ludwick). N.B. Thanks to Manassas1 for introducing this topic. It helps explain "what Buell was doing" during those hours that Grant left him alone, Sunday afternoon. [And although there is no monument, the Signal Corps Association recognizes the contribution of the "flag-men."]
  22. Letter from the 6th Iowa

    Oliver Boardman was a 21 year old from Albia, Iowa who enlisted as a Private in the 6th Iowa Volunteer Infantry, Co. E at Burlington in July 1861; and spent the next several months guarding trains in northern Missouri. On 14 March 1862, the Crescent City touched at Savannah Tennessee, and two days later the 6th Iowa disembarked at Pittsburg Landing. On April 24th, Private Boardman wrote a letter to his brother and sister back in Albia, and in eight pages describes his activity "on the far right of the Army, under General Sherman." Boardman recalls "just getting out of a trap" and hurrying with his regiment to the north; being engaged, while continually falling back; and "being supported" by one regiment after another, "which would fire two or three shots, then disappear." Eventually reaching "the tight pocket of our Army, on the bluff," Private Boardman identifies the arrival of Buell; the Siege guns; and the gunboats as crucial in warding off Rebel success {"They finally gave up on taking the Landing, and left us alone til morning.") Day Two, Private Boardman went with a company of the 6th Iowa, attached to "another regiment," and joined Sherman in fighting "in a westerly direction" during which Boardman's company was assigned as support to a battery. During the course of an artillery duel, Boardman describes, "there being so much smoke, it was hard to see anything. But eventually we took that Rebel battery." In the aftermath, Private Boardman contemplated "what went wrong" at Shiloh, and put it down to "believing too much in our own strength," and "the scattered nature of the camps." [In a later letter, written May 11th, Oliver Boardman also remarked that, "He believes the generals will do right, this time. Grant is not with us; Halleck has our confidence."] The 24 April 1862 Letter from Oliver Boardman is one of more than a dozen letters, covering July 1861 through the Vicksburg Campaign of 1863. Each letter is written in a legible cursive handwriting (with typed transcript at bottom of each page.) The collection is on file with Iowa Heritage Digital Collection (associated with Universities of Iowa): http://128.255.22.135/cdm/ref/collection/cwd/id/21464 Private Oliver Boardman Letter from Shiloh, 24 April 1862 Cheers Ozzy
  23. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    Mona, Here is what I was able to find on Eluctious William Treadwell, Sr. Wasn't able to find a burial location, sadly. -Paul
  24. Earlier
  25. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    did he survive? and live in the land ruled by the north or go to south america?
  26. 19th Alabama pre-Shiloh letter

    I can't remember if I posted this before or not, but this is pretty neat. The letter was written by E. W. Treadwell of Company H, 19th Alabama Infantry on 26 March 1862. Neat insight concerning the days before Shiloh. You know we are already short of firearms but our Blacksmiths are engaged in making pikes which I think will be valuable to us. General B. (Beauregard) is gathering up all the church bells he can get to make cannons and I am glad to learn that the churches are sending them in with all the feelings of patriotism that can prompt a true Southerner It is for sale, so if anyone is looking for an early Christmas present for me HA! http://www.mqamericana.com/19th_AL_Battle_of_Shiloh.html
  27. On September 13th 1861, Corporal Jacob Harrison Allspaugh began this diary (and managed to record the drunken party of the night before.) On this day, the 31st Ohio Infantry moved south, out of Ohio and into Kentucky, where it set up tents at Camp Dick Robinson. And almost immediately, misfortune strikes Corporal Allspaugh: while showing a friend a revolver, he shot himself in the hand. For the next several weeks, the diary entries revolve around attempts to "extract the bullet," until finally Jacob Allspaugh was sent away for specialist care, and the bullet removed (in November.) Recovering quickly, Corporal Allspaugh rejoined his regiment, in time for the Battle of Mill Springs (but the 31st OVI was late getting orders, and missed the fight.) Marched to Louisville, the 31st Ohio boarded a steamer and cruised up the Cumberland River to Nashville (where Allspaugh witnessed one American flag, many looks of contempt, and too many "hissing women.") From Nashville, the 31st Ohio Infantry began "that march" south and west to join Grant's Army at Savannah. Corporal Allspaugh describes the small, neat towns passed; the former cotton fields (now planted in wheat); and the mostly friendly country people (despite their politics.) Being near the tail-end of the line, the 31st Ohio was only delayed briefly by the rebuilding of "that bridge" over Duck River; but seriously delayed by baggage wagons of the divisions ahead of the 1st Division. The 31st OVI arrived at Pittsburg Landing on April 20th (Allspaugh describes the appearance of the battlefield, two weeks after the contest; and sketched the "grave" of Albert Sidney Johnston.) On April 24th, Corporal Allspaugh recorded hearing the sound of a skirmish in the direction of Corinth; he recorded hearing "firing in the direction of Corinth" again on the 28th. On April 29th, "the expedition of 90,000 men started for Corinth." And for the next several pages, Corporal Allspaugh records the daily, distant sounds of skirmishes; advancing short distances (followed by picket duty or digging); and the rumors... (On April 29th, they heard about the Capture of New Orleans, but nobody believed it.) On May 1st, they "heard that McClellan was dead." And on May 8th, the rumor circulated "that Corinth had been evacuated." Despite the daily skirmishes somewhere on the line, the 31st Ohio managed to avoid contact... until May 21st (when Corporal Allspaugh records "taking his first shot at a Rebel (but without knowing the result.") Continuing to close the distance to Corinth, Allspaugh records the arrival of Jacob Thompson under flag-of-truce to exchange prisoners; the sudden shortage of fresh water (beginning May 17th); and the daily rumor: "The attack is tomorrow." Finally, there were the sounds of explosions on the morning of May 30th, announcing that Corinth had been evacuated. The 31st Ohio was marched to Farmington, and joined the pursuit of the fleeing Rebels south -- as far as Rienzi, Mississippi -- before being recalled to Corinth in early June. The diary of Corporal Allspaugh is mostly legible, cursive handwriting (with a typed transcript at bottom of each page.) Every-other page begins a new series of diary entries (with the pages in-between devoted to "more in-depth details of the events found on the previous page.") The observations of Smithland, Fort Donelson (under Union occupation), Clarksville and its bridge, Nashville and Columbia are perceptive and precise. Conditions of roads, the country marched over, and the weather each day are described. In all, this diary offers a good summary of the march from Nashville to Savannah; and a detailed description of one Ohio soldier's March to Corinth. Cheers Ozzy http://128.255.22.135/cdm/ref/collection/cwd/id/6494 Diary of Corporal Allspaugh, 31st Ohio, courtesy Iowa Digital Heritage Collection.
  28. SGT Thompson, 3rd Iowa, Co. F

    Tim I have been collecting material on Ophilia Amigh for some time. I am going to be away for a week or so. When I get back I'll post some more info (scanty) on her career in the Civil War. I have some Dr. Edwards material also (also scanty). Edwards and Lincoln were not on the same committee but were in the same Congress. Edwards participated in one of the great American medical controversies of the 19th century over who discovered anesthesia. Rbn3
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