Ningan Steele Lindsey,27th Tennessee Infantry

3 09 2011

Willian Nigian Steele Lindsey

Ningan Steele Lindsey was born  1837 in Henderson County, Tennessee. He was the son of William P. Lindsey (b.1812); who was the son of Ezekiel Lindsey (b.1777 S.C.) of the “Long Marsh Lindsey’s” from South Carolina . At the outbreak of the war the Lindsey family was living in Hardin County, Tennessee. Ezekiel had moved his family to Hardin County from Maury County, Tennessee in the 1820’s. Ezekiel Lindsey died in Hardin County; 1825. In 1860 the William P. Lindsey family was living in District 12, William’s brother John W. Lindsey (author’s 4th great grandfather) was living in District 2. Other siblings had either died or moved west to Texas. Our subject was listed in the 1850 Hardin County census as William, in all later census records he is listed as N.S. Lindsey.

N. S. Lindsey traveled to Camp Trenton,Gibson County Tennessee in 1861. He enlisted as a member of (Brown’s) 55th Tennessee Infantry, Company F. Brown’s 55th Tennessee was sent to bolster the small Confederate garrison on Island No. 10 along the Mississippi River. Works and heavy artillery were placed here  to defend the Mississippi River from invasion by the combined United States Army and Navy forces.  On April 7, 1862 Island No. 10 was attacked by a Union flotilla, it would fall in Union hands the next day. Many Confederates on the island were taken prisoner, several men of the garrison were able to swim off and make an escape. N. S. Lindsey’s compiled service record states that he “made his escape at Island No. 10 and is now a member of the 27th Tennessee Infantry Reg’t.” N.S. was placed in Company I, 27th Tenn. Inf.

There is a conflict in N. S. Lindsey’s service record and his Confederate pension application. N.S. states he joined the 27th Tennessee Infantry in April 1862 and that “Colonel Kirk Williams” was in command. Colonel Williams was killed on April 6, 1862 at the battle of Shiloh. N. S. Lindsey makes this statement in his 1893 pension application and again in his 1899 pension application. I find it very hard to believe that N.S. was with the 27th Tennessee at the Battle of Shiloh instead of Island No. 10.

N. S. was present with the 27th Tennessee Infantry during the battle of Perryville, Ky., Oct. 8, 1862. He had by this time been promoted to 3rd sergeant of company I. As part of  Maney’s Brigade the regiment was heavily engaged throughout the day, making several charges against Federal infantry posted on top of “Starkweather’s Hill”, later named for the Union brigade commander defending it. The regiment would fight until it’s numbers were so low that it was no longer an effective fighting force.The 27th, commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Frierson and Major Allen, reported 210 men in action, with 112 killed, wounded, and missing. The 27th Tennessee  lost fifty-three percent of its men as casualties, one of which was N. S. Lindsey. His service record states he was wounded, but does not state the nature of the wound. In his 1891 Tennessee Confederate Pension Application, N. S. states “Was shot in right leg above the knee and came out below the knee, fracturing the leg bone. Shot with minie ball by the enemy.” N.S. also said he was cared for by a “Yankee doctor.”

N. S. was captured by Union forces on Oct. 9, 1862 and sent to Camp Chase Military Prison at Columbus, Ohio. He is listed as being 28 years old, 5 ft. 8 inches tall, hazel eyes, light hair and had a light complexion. N. S. was sent to City Point Virginia for prisoner exchange on March 23, 1863. He spent some time in a military hospital at Chattanooga, Tennessee after his exchange.


Grave of Ningan Steel Lindsey

N. S. returned to his regment during August /September, 1863. He states in his pension papers, “I did what I could, provost guard and cooking.” A doctor that examined him for the State of Tennessee Pension Board stated that the “leg is almost completely paralyzed and the leg muscles are constricted causing a poor flow of blood through the right leg.” N.S. Lindsey’s leg had been so badly shattered that in an 1899 statement he wrote “frequently pieces of bone work out.” There was a question that asked if any limbs were lost by wounds or accidents. N. S. stated “No limb lost, just the use of right leg by reason of bone being fractured, and the disability is permanent.”

His service record for the 27th Tenn. ends in late 1863, but he is listed as being present at Gen. Joseph Johnston’s surrender of Confederate forces in North Carolina. N.S. was paroled on May 1, 1865 at Greensboro, North Carolina as a member of the 4th Consolidated Reg’t, Tennessee Infantry. He states he was “paroled and never took the Oath,” which his records verify. After the war N.S. returned to his home in Hardin County. Around the turn of the Century he moved to Chester County, Tennessee. N.S. applied for and was granted a soldiers pension from the State of Tennessee (S486), August 14, 1899, he had also applied for state pension in 1893. Confederate veteran N. S. Lindsey died on November 18, 1913 and is buried at Grove Springs Cemetery, Chester County, Tennesse.

Written by Scott Busenbark

Starkweather’s Brigade at the battle of Perryville

Account of Perryville from a member of Maney’s Brigade


The following article first appeared in CONFEDERATE VETERAN. Volume XXX. DECEMBER 1922

In the VETERAN for September, 1921. appeared a beautiful tribute to Col. Hume R. Feild, 1st Tennessee Regiment, Maney’s Brigade, Cheatham’s Division, by Dr. Charles W. Miles, Union City, Tenn. In giving account of Colonel Feild and his regiment in the battle of Perryville, Ky., the following passage appears:

“Maney’s entire brigade had attempted to storm a battery in their immediate front, the assault was unsuccessful; whereupon General Maney ordered Colonel Feild to repeat the effort with his regiment…. The battery was carried with hardly a man left to tell the tale.”

I was then the sergeant major of the 9th Tennessee Regiment, Maney’s Brigade, and was with my regiment in the whole of this engagement. Upon reading this article I wrote to Dr. Miles, asking if Colonel Feild had left any diary or account of this battle, and, if so, to please send me a copy. After several months I received a copy of the colonel’s “desultory notes” (so called) by Dr. Miles, which his daughter had, in which the following appeared:

“After Maney’s Brigade was repulsed from the hill, General Maney ordered me to take my regiment, the 1st Tennessee, and storm the hill, which the gallant 1st did, and never halted until it was among the battery that crowned the hill. Seeing it was to simply sacrifice the whole command, I withdrew the regiment after great slaughter.”

Neither of these accounts of this battle conformed to my remembrance (especially as to my regiment), engraved as the incidents were of gallant charges, the hiss of Minie balls, the roar of cannon, and the bloody falling of brave comrades – “circumstance of most glorious war.”

For my own satisfaction, I referred to read and reread all the authors available on this subject, the regimental histories of the four Tennessee regiments, 1st 6th, 9th, and 27th Tennessee of Maney’s Brigade, found in “Lindsley’s Military Annals,” each written by prominent officers of these regiments. I also wrote to Washington, but received nothing from there except Federal reports, and to the State Library at Nashville, hoping to get General Maney’s official report of Perryvville, but was unable to get any account by division or brigade officers, who were advised of the conduct of each and all the forces under their command. Fortunately, I thought of Capt, Thomas H. Malone, who was adjutant general on General Maney’s staff at Perryville, and for years Chancellor at Nashville, Tenn., so I wrote to his son, of the same name, to know if his father had left any diary or memoirs, giving an account of Perryville; if he did, to please send me a copy. He kindly sent me a manuscript copy of his father’s memoirs of some two hundred pages (written for his family), which gave detailed account of the many battles he was engaged in and “dangers he had passed,” and giving the part each regiment of Maney’s Brigade took at Perryville. This memoir was just as my memory gave as to the part taken by the 6th and 9th Regiments, and I was greatly pleased to find that it made clear what Colonel Feild meant in his brief notes, quoted above; and, further, that it adds heretofore unspoken honor to each and all of the regiments of Maney’s Brigade, and demonstrated that the tribute to Colonel Feild, by Dr. Miles was none too high. And I must add that this memoir of Judge Malone is one of the most interesting, enjoyable, and valuable contributions to Tennessee Confederate history. Upon reading it, I felt it my duty to the whole brigade, dead and alive, to give it publicity, and. of course, through the CONFEDERATE VETERAN as the best depository for perpetuation.

I wish to add further that I was a witness of Captain Malone’s services as a soldier for many months while he was with Maney’s Brigade, and take pleasure in paying highest tribute to him. There was not a braver, more daring and gallant officer in the Southern army, Chivalrous as Murat, one who would lead a forlorn hope or gallop up to the mouth of grape-charged cannon as gayly as he would walk to a banquet or lead a fair lady to the ballroom.

It gives me pleasure also to say here, with emphasis, that this article is not intended to even intimate that either Col. Feild, or his faithful friend and physician. Dr. Miles, did or would intentionally misrepresent in any way, nor to minimize praise given his splendid regiment.

For four years – from Shiloh to the last battle – these four Tennessee regiments of Maney’s Brigade, Cheatham’s Division, were comrades in arms, each assured of the support of the other in critical emergencies.

Captain Malone’s account of the Perryville battle is as follows:

“On October 8 the great battle of Perryville was fought in proportion to the numbers engaged, one of the very bloodiest of the war. Of course, I do not propose to give any regular description of the battle, I propose to give only what I myself saw, so far as I remember…

“Toward ten o’clock, as I now remember, perhaps a little later, we were ordered to move rapidly by the right flank and take position upon the extreme right of our army. In our new position we were subjected to some shelling, not severe, as I remember. Indeed, I cannot recall that there were any casualties in our brigade. Somewhat later in the day, perhaps about twelve o’clock, we were ordered to advance. I never did have any correct memory with regard to the hours of October 8, 1862. When I think of that day it occurs to me. as a unit, from the time I awoke until about sundown.

“Anyhow, we advanced across an open field, under a rather sharp fire of the enemy’s skirmishers, to the foot of a wooded hill, where it became evident that the enemy’s lines still flanked ours, and we must march by the right flank, taking ground to the right. I remember that General Maney, thinking that in marching my column over rough ground it would be difficult to keep the column closed up, sent me back, to see that this was done. While I was thus engaged, I heard a severe fire toward the head of the column. I rode rapidly toward the firing, and it was very pleasant to me to see the kind feeling the brigade had for me, expressed in continuous cheers and friendly guying. Our whole line was then under fire, and I was riding between the men and the enemy.

“When I reached the head of the column, I was directed to place the 1st and 27th Tennessee Regiments in a certain position in the wood, while the other regiments continued their march. While I was thus placing these two regiments, I heard a heavy fire of musketry and artillery break out near the head of the column. It was my business, of course, to be near my commanding general, to bear his orders, if there should be any, and I immediately sought him. I found him standing under a great white oak tree at the edge of the field, and in the field I saw the 41st Georgia and the 6th and 9th Tennessee Regiments lying on the ground, engaged in a bitter fight with the line of the enemy on the edge of the hill in their front, which line was supported by Parsons’s Battery of of eight 12-pound Napoleon guns. It seemed to me that our men could not have maintained our position at all but for the fact that old Turner – the best artilleryman, but the poorest drilled man in the army – was imperatively demanding the attention of Parsons’s guns. He thundered with his, little 6-pound howitzers right over the heads of our men, and with grape was making it very hot for Parsons and his infantry supports.

“After looking at the battle for a few minutes, General Maney asked me what I thought of it. I told him I didn’t think our position could be maintained; that there were seven or eight guns of the enemy against Turner’s four, and that the enemy’s line of infantry was longer and stronger than ours. He asked what I thought should be done, and I told him I believed our only chance was to take those guns. He asked if I thought it was possible for our men to do it. I said, ‘I think so.’ He then said, ‘Go, direct the men to go forward, if possible.’ I rode out into the field in the rear of the line, and, passing the whole length of our line of battle, told the field officers of each regiment what was expected. I was repeatedly assured by officers and privates as I rode along that if it were possible to make a simultaneous movement, they believed they could take the guns, but in the great uproar of bursting shells and crashing of incessant musketry a man could hardly be heard even speaking his loudest. I was discussing this with Captain Harrison, of the 9th Tennessee, when a private of the 9th looked up and called out to, me: ‘Captain, the 9th will follow you anywhere.’ Thereupon, I rode up and down the line again, telling the men to look to the center of the line, and when I rode out and raised my hat that should be the signal for a simultaneous charge. I went back to the 9th, rode out about three horse lengths in front, laughingly charging the fellows not to shoot me in the back, raised my hat, and gave a yell. Every man was instantly on his feet, and I don’t suppose that twelve hundred men ever gave such a yell before. With bayonets at charge, they ran as fast as they could run right through the guns and over the enemy’s line. We did not fire a shot from the time the charge began until the enemy’s whole line of battle was in flight, and then, shooting deliberately, the butchery was something awful. I remember stating at the time that I could walk upon dead bodies from where the enemy’s line was established until it reached the woods, some three hundred yards away, . . .

Several of the enemy’s guns were loaded and fired while we were making the charge, and it seems to me that the one pointed at the 41st Georgia was fired after old George and I passed the battery. Old George wasn’t afraid of anything on the earth, or under it, so far as I know, except a wagon. He had been injured, when a colt, by a runaway wagon, and George knew of his own knowledge that a loaded wagon was a half devil. Just as the 9th and I were passing through the guns, George spied a caisson, and, suddenly wheeling and tearing, nearly unseated me. Several of the 9th rushed out of line, calling out: ‘The Captain’s killed,’ and seized old George. I remember that I said; ‘Boys, don’t be such fools. George is not afraid of anything but a wagon, and be took this caisson for a wagon.’ Neither George nor I received a scratch. . . .

“Of course, as I have stated above, we suffered terribly while we were charging, but the enemy still more after they had begun to run. But what struck me at the time, and strikes me now, is the fatal accuracy of the fire of the 41st, 6th, and 9th while the enemy were lying down. It seemed to me that one-third of them were lying dead on the line which they had been holding so gallantly.

“The enemy did not attempt to make any further stand in our front. We pursued them through a thin wood and a cornfield grown up with high weeds for some distance, perhaps a mile, until – by command of General Cheatham, I believe – we were halted. It had become evident that while we had defeated the enemy in our front, there was a considerable body of troops on our right that threatened to flank us and, as we were on the extreme right of our army, thus to get the flank of the entire army. I suggested to Colonel Feild, who was near me, this fact, and asked if he didn’t think it was best for me to gallop to the rear, -find General Maney, and ask him to bring up behind our right the 1st and 27th Tennessee. He assented, and as I was thus proceeding, I saw the 1st and, as I supposed, the 27th, rapidly moving obliquely forward and to the right, into the position we desired them to take. I saw General Cheatham, who told me that he had himself seen the necessity for the movement and had given the order. I than returned to the main line, and soon heard an exceedingly heavy fire upon our right, waged, as I then thought, by the 1st and 27th Tennessee but it was, in fact, the 1st Tennessee alone, When we made the charge the 27th lost its grip,, couldn’t stand still, and, despite orders, went with us to a man. The little regiment had been nearly wiped out at Shiloh. but the men that remained were still as game as bulldogs.

“In the wood and the cornfield where we hafted I could see very little indeed. The firing upon our right ceased, and, in great excitement, I galloped toward the point where it had been heard, and found the 1st Tennessee quietly marching to the rear. The first man I met was Bill Kelley, of Company A. He told me they had had a most severe fight, had lost nearly half the men, and had retreated, under orders of Lieutenant Colonel Patterson, as he understood, when just on the point of carrying all before them. Upon inquiry I found that Lieutenant Colonel Patterson was dead. While urging on his men he was fatally shot, and as his horse turned, going back to the rear, it was supposed that the retreat had been ordered by him. Colonel Feild, the colonel of the regiment, who had been ordered with the 9th, 6th, and 27th Tennessee and the 41st Georgia, took charge of the 1st and carried it back, regained the position from which they had retreated, silenced the battery on their front, joined to the other regiments of the brigade, and so, formed a continuous line, which was held by us until night….

“A drummer boy of the 9th Tennessee quite distinguished himself. He went forward when his regiment made the charge. His drum was shattered by a fragment of shell, and he threw it away. seized a gun that had fallen from the hands of a wounded comrade, and gallantly pressed forward with the foremost; and it was said – I do not know how truly -that with the butt of, his rifle he crushed the skull of an artilleryman who was in the act of firing his gun. The incident was related to General Maney and his staff. A day or two afterwards, as General Maney and I were passing along the 9th, I pointed out the youngster – he was about sixteen years old – and the following conversation took place between them: The general said ‘My little man, were you in the battle?’ ‘O, yes, sir, I was there.’ ‘What did you do?’ ‘Why, I beat the drum, of course.’ ‘Well, when the men started to charge, what did you do?’ ‘I beat the drum,’ ‘But at the last, in the desperate fight, what did you do?’ O’ said the little man with a grin, ‘when they fought I fit.’ …

“When the four regiments were sent forward to take the guns, General Maney remained behind with the 1st and the 27th Tennessee; at least, I went forward with the four regiments and did not see him until much later in the day. When afterwards the 1st went into action, it was, as I understood, led first by Lieutenant Colonel Patterson and afterwards by Colonel Feild. . . .

“General Maney was of opinion, when he saw the three strong lines of the enemy in front of our single line, that we should certainly be beaten back. As we were on the extreme right of the army, he thought the result would be that the right wing of Bragg’s army would be turned by the enemy. He, therefore, had retained the 1st and 27th Tennessee Regiments as a reserve, behind which the rest of the command, if defeated, might rally. In the meantime, General Cheatham had come up in person and directed the 1st and 27th Tennessee to come to our support.” . . .

I will add that, as stated by Captain Malone, the 6th and 9th went directly through Parsons’s Battery, and one of the officers of my company, A, picked up a gauntlet glove of General Jackson, whose body lay among the guns. We routed the infantry that was supporting the battery and pursued them from the field, then through a woods, and then a cornfield to a ravine at the foot of another steep, hill, occupied by the enemy and were halted there behind a rail fence, where we remained for some time, until nearly night, when we were ordered to retire.

I remember quite vividly that the desultory firing from the hill, which splintered the rails, caused us to change positions and play the part of many squirrels we had shot from the limbs.

As a further account of Captain Malone’s leading the assault upon and capture of Parsons’s Battery, I close this article with a paragraph from an address delivered at Brownsville, Tenn., on July 28, 1921, some two months before the appearance of Dr. Miles’s tribute in the (CONFEDERATE) VETERAN under the following circumstances; Memphis had some three hundred citizens, natives of Haywood County, who had formed an association, of which I was a member. Haywood County invited this association to a home-coming and welcome to Brownsville, and I was appointed by our association to deliver an address to our hosts. Knowing that Haywood had given several companies to the 6th and 9th Tennessee Regiments, who had participated in the Perryville fight, in that address I gave the following incident, in connection with my claim of having been raised as a farmer in Haywood:

“One of the horses I raised in Haywood I took with me to the army and sold him to Capt. Thomas Malone, adjutant general of our Brigade, in after years Chancellor at Nashville. This horse, George, a handsome gray, and Captain Malone figured in one of the most stirring and gallant events witnessed by me in four years of ‘bloody war.’

In the battle of Perryville our regiment the 9th Tennessee Infantry, and the other regiments of the brigade were confronting, in close proximity, Jackson’s eight-piece brass battery. Suddenly Captain Malone, mounted on George, dashed out to our front, and with drawn sword, ordered: ‘Up and charge that battery.’ We sprang to the attack, he leading, and we charged and took the whole battery, killing General Jackson and routing the infantry supporting the battery. Neither Captain Malone nor George was wounded, but George was afterwards killed in battle.”

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An Examination of Hardin County and the 52nd Tennessee Inf. Company B

29 11 2009

Dalton Issue Flag of the 51st/52nd Consolidated Tennessee Infantry

I have spent several years researching and studying the service records, census records and general history of my 3rd great grandfather Wm. David Lee. I have often asked myself  several questions.

1. What motivated David serve to serve in the Confederate Army when history tells us that the Eastern half of Hardin county was very pro union?

2. Why did David travel 40 miles to Henderson Station to enlist and were there other men from Hardin County that made the journey to Henderson Station?

I decided to dig into the 1860 U.S. Census records and try to locate others who served in Company B, 52nd Tennessee Infantry from Hardin County. I started running names in District 14 of Hardin County, which carried a Bonnough Post Office address. This is where David Lee was living with his family in 1860. I then took the first and last names of the men living in District 14 and ran them on the NPS Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System. Once I had my District 14 soldier prospects, I started going through each mans Individual Compiled Confederate Service Record from the National Archives. Luck was on my side, ages and number of miles traveled to the rendezvous point at Henderson Station had been recorded in all of the original members Compiled Service Records. Many of the ages are off by one or two years, I don’t know if this was their age at enlistment or their age when the the 52nd was consolidated with the 51st Tennessee Inf.

I was very excited with my findings and will now share what I have found. I will start by giving the name of each original member that lived in District 14.I will also share the information contained in each individuals Compiled Service Record.

1.)  Wm. David Lee – David was born in Alabama, 1844. In the 1860 census he is listed as living in District 14  with his parents Joseph C. and Nancy. He enlisted as W.D. Lee on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station. Miles traveled to the rendezvous was 40, his age is listed as 19. David  was promoted to Corporal on April 22, 1862. He was “slightly wounded” at the battle of Murfreesboro, Tennessee on December 31, 1862 and sent to the hospital at Rome, Georgia on January 2, 1863. A notation on his  causality card for the battle lists him as “David”, this is what friends and family called him. He did not return to the regiment but served in Biffle’s 19th (9th)Tennessee Cavalry with his younger brother Samuel, who was a corporal in Company F. According to Nathan Columbus Davis, who lived near Savannah, Hardin County and served in Company F, Biffle’s 19th Cavalry, “Dave Lee and Sam Lee” served in his company during the war.  “Tennessee Civil War Veterans  Questionaire”, Volume II; page 651.

2.)  B.M. Steward/Stewart –  Listed as Martin Stewart in the 1860 Census, enlisted as B.M. Sterward, but also noted as B. M Stewart several times in his service record. I believe this man to be David Lee’s uncle or cousin through his mother. He was born in 1837; Georgia and was listed as a farmer. He lived four houses away from the Joseph Lee family. I found a marriage certificate for David’s parents; Joseph Lee and Nancy Stewart in Alabama; 1843. David’s mother Nancy was also born in Georgia. B.M. enlisted as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. He is listed as 25 years old, number of miles to the rendezvous was 40. B.M. is listed as a 4th sergeant  on the April to December 1862 rolls and is noted as deserting on Jan. 6, 1863. On the March to June muster roll he is listed as present; returned from hospital in Georgia June 1, 1863, no cause for the hospital stay was given. On January 1, 1864 B.M. is promoted to 1st sergeant of Company B. He is listed as dying in a Marrietta, Ga. Confederate hospital from a gunshot wound on May 19, 1864. He is buried in the Confederate Cemetery at Marrietta, Ga.

3.) R. H. Morris – Listed as Robert H. Morris in the 1860 Census. He was born 1845 in Tennessee and was living on his fathers farm in District 14. He was a neighbor on one side to Martin Stewart/Steward and on the other side by another member of the company; Francis Cooley.  R.H. enlisted on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. He is listed as 18 years of age, number of miles to the rendezvous listed as 39. He is listed as a 4th Sergeant. R.H. died on April 24, 1862, no cause is given for his death.

4.) F.M. Cooley – Listed in the 1860 Census as Francis M. Cooley. Francis , is listed as a “Common Labor”  and was born in Mississippi; 1839. His mother Edith and brother Malcom were living in District 2 with Edith’s new husband; widower John W. Lindsey. In 1850 the Edith  Cooley family lived in Subdivision 2, Lincoln County, Tennessee. Also in the J.W. Lindsey household was David Lee’s future wife, Sarah Elizabeth Lindsey. There is also a Sarah Stewart/Steward age 50 living in the F.M. Cooley household in 1860. Francis enlisted as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. His age is listed as 22 years old. Number of miles to the rendezvous is listed as 38. Francis is listed as deserting on April 18, 1862, by “order of General Chalmers”. On the August to December 1862 muster roll he is listed as rejoining the company on November 1, 1862. After the battle of Murfreesboro he is again listed as deserting on the 6th of January, 1863. He is later found on the rolls of Wilson’s 21st Tennessee Cavalry.

5.) Frederick M. Ray – Also listed as Fred & F.M in the muster rolls. He was born in Tennessee; 1843. Frederick is living on the H.W. Davis farm and is listed as a “common laborer”. The Davis farm is next door to Martin Steward/Stewart’s. Frederick enlisted as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. He is listed as 20 years of age and traveled “38 miles” to the rendezvous. Fred is shown as being “wounded at Shiloh and taken prisoner.” His P.O.W. record from Camp Chase, Ohio states he was captured on April 7, 1862. It also says he is 18 Years old, eyes are hazel, complexion is light and has straight brown hair. It notes that his wound is in the thigh, above the right knee. He is listed as present on the July and August 1863 roll.  On the Jan. / Feb. 1864 rolls he is reported as deserting on Feb. 15, 1864. March and April ’64 rolls say that Fred was “furloughed and captured”.

6.)  O.E. Whitlow – Listed as Oscar E. Whitlow in the 1860 Census. He was born in Tennessee; 1844. Oscar was living on the family farm at the time of enlistment. He enrolled as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. Oscar stated he traveled 36 miles to the rendezvous and listed his age as 20. On the company muster roll dated June 30, 1862 is a notation, “Died March 4, 1862.” No cause for his death is noted.

7.) Enoch Cupples – Listed as Enoch Couples in the 1860 Census. Enoch was born in North Carolina; 1841. He was living on the family farm before enlistment. Enoch enrolled as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. His age is listed as 21. He stated he traveled 38 miles to the rendezvous. He is listed as “present” on the company muster rolls until a notation that he had “returned from the hospital on May 29, 1863”. No reason was given for the hospital stay. He continued with the regiment until his capture at the battle of Nashville, Tennessee on December 16, 1864.  Enoch was sent to Camp Chase, Ohio and was transfered to Point Lookout, Md. on Feb. 17, 1865 for exchange.

8.) J.S. Turner – listed as Josiah in the 1860 Census. He is listed as being born in 1842. He was living on the family farm before enlistment. He enlisted as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. He stated he was 18 years old and traveled 38 miles to the rendezvous. On the company muster roll he is a “Reported deserter April 18, 1862 by General Chalmers.” He returns to the muster roll for March and April 1863 as having been “Absent without leave from April 18, 1862 to March 4, 1863. He is listed as being present through March and April 1864. He has a hospital record for June 1, 1864, at the Madison Hospital, Montgomery, Alabama. No reason is given and no other record exists for J.S. Turner’s fate.

9.)  J.W. Mitchell – Listed as John W. Mitchel, born 1841, Alabama, in the 1860 Census. He is living on his mother’s farm before enlistment. John enrolled as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. He states he is 21 years old and traveled 37 miles to the rendezvous. On the June 1862 muster roll, it states he was sent to the hospital. A causality card states he was wounded April, 1862 at Shiloh. He is present for the rest of 1862, but is listed as being “slightly wounded” at Murfreesboro, December 31, 1862. John is present for all of the year 1863 and is promoted to 3rd corporal on January 1, 1864. On December 16, 1864 John was taken prisoner at the battle of Nashville, Tennessee. He was sent to Camp Douglas, Chicago, Illinois.

10.) W.A. Polk – Listed in the 1860 Census as Wm. Polk, born 1839, Tennessee. He is listed as a farmer on his widowed mothers farm. William enrolled as a private on December 4, 1861 at Henderson Station, Tennessee. He states his age as 21 and miles traveled to the rendezvous, 36. William’s muster sheet states that he “Died April 26, 1862.” No cause is given for William’s death.

11.) Joab Alexander (J.A.) Russell – Listed in the 1860 Census as J.A. Rupell. He is listed as a farmer with $ 1000.00 worth of personal estate.  J.A. was born in Tennessee ; 1827. He was also the person that would recruit the men that would become Company B, 52nd Tennessee. Goodspeed’s History of Hardin County, Tennesse gives proof that Russell raised a company within Hardin County -” Numerous other bodies were sent to the service, among them Capt. J. A. Russell’s company and a large number to Capt. J. W. Eldridge’s battery.” Leading his men from Hardin County to Henderson Station, Captain Russell enlisted on December 4, 1861. He stated his age as being 35 years old and that he traveled 40 miles to the rendezvous. He was present with the regiment until early 1863, when he is listed “On detached service.” He went home to recruit a new company (Co. A) for (Wilson’s) 21st Tennessee Cavalry Regiment. A.N. Wilson was formerly a Captain and then Major of the 52nd Tennessee Infantry. Russell’s and Wilson’s companies fought in the ranks of the 5th Mississippi Infantry at Shiloh and gained praise from General Chalmers in his after action report of  Shiloh.  Not only does Captain Russell seem to have been a good leader, it would appear he was also a very good organizer for the Confederate Army on the east side of the Tennessee River in Hardin County.

There were many others from Hardin County that joined Company B. Many of the men who are listed as deserters can later be found on the rolls of Biffle’s (19th) Tenn. Cavalry and Wilson’s (21st) Tenn. Cavalry Regiments.

The following is a listing of known men from other districts of Hardin County who served in Company B, 52nd Tennessee Infantry.

* Men listed as a recruit  were not present at the original organization of company B at Henderson Station.* 

C.B. Arendell, District 4; J.M. Arendell, District 4; John Arendell, District 3; J. Austin, District 14 (recruit); S. Austin, District 14 (recruit); W.H. Baker, District 4; J.W. Baker, District 4; W.N. Barnes, District 4; Elijah Basey, District 3; John Black, District 3; T.A. Booth, District 2; R.J. Bratton, District 5; Jesse G. Carson, District 2; H.L. Dearen, District 8; J.F. Doyle, District 1; J.W. Doyle, District 1; F.W. Edings, District 4; W.T. Garner, district unknown (listed from Hardin County on Oath.) Squire Haggard, District 2; George Hailey, District 2; Robert Hames, District 14 (recruit); J.M. Hampton, District 6; R.L. “Leroy” Hodge, District 4; J.R. Kincannon, District 2; T.J. Kincannon, District 2; James Lackey, District 1; Thomas Love, District 14 (recruit); Marion Love, District 14 (recruit); J.T. Martin, District 6; W.K. Martin, District 6; C.P. Mays, District 1; Elijah Mays, District 1; Jesse Morton, District 14 (recruit); J.T. Motley, District 4; J. Mullins, District 4; Elisha Peacock, District 5; J.N. Peacock, District 2; W.T. Pierce, District 11; Drury Parker, District 2; Marion Polk, District 2; Aaron Pool, District 2; F.M. Pool, District 2; Woodman Stanton, District 1; J. Reed, District 8; James Taylor, District 11; Wiley Waldo, District 5; W.M. West, District 2; Richard A. White, District 8; J.J. Worley, District 8.

I am sure that this is an incomplete listing of Hardin County Men, there are several that I believe were from there, but I cannot prove it in the census or service records. I do believe that there is more than enough proof that Hardin County men were the core of Company B, 52nd Tennessee Infantry. In the future, I hope that any revisions in the two volume set of  “Tennesseans in the Civil War” will reflect Hardin County with Company B, 52nd Tennessee Infantry. It is also no wonder why Russell’s company stayed on the field at Shiloh,  for many in the ranks of Company B it really was their homes they were fighting for.

As to my former questions, I believe I have answers to them.

1.) David enlisted in the Confederate Army because his family and friends close by were enlisting. Also because of the energetic man (J.A. Russell) that was recruiting the company lived close by.

2.) David traveled to Henderson Station to enlist because Capt. Russell organized and lead a large contingent of Hardin County men 40 miles to enlist in the Confederate Army. This is shown by the December 4 , 1861 enlistment date on many of the Hardin County men’s service records.

Compiled and written by

Scott R. Busenbark



Report of Picketts Charge; Major Charles S. Peyton; 19th Virginia Infantry

8 08 2009

One of the families that I really enjoy studying is the Peyton Family of Virginia. Valentine Peyton was in Virginia by 1654 and had acquired 1600 acres of land along Aquia Creek, Westmoreland County, Virginia around 1662. There were three sons of Henry Peyton of Lincolns Inn, England who came to Virginia. Two of the sons returned to England and one son; Valentine stayed in Virginia.  Aquia Creek is where the Peyton family started in Virginia and grew and started to migrate West. My g-g-g grandfather John Peyton/Payton moved to Montgomery County, Indiana in 1828 from Franklin County, Kentucky. Once John moved into Montgomery County the spelling was changed to Payton. John’s grandfather Charles (b. 1746) was from Overwharton Parish, Stafford County Virginia. He migrated into Kentucky before 1800 and died in Franklin County, Kentucky before 1809.  John’s Father Charles (b.1768) moved to Franklin County, Kentucky and died in 1849. The Peyton Society of Virginia is for any member of the Peyton family who can prove their line back to Valentine Peyton. There were many descendents of Valentine Peyton that served from Virginia and elsewhere during the Civil War. Most notable were Major Charles S., George Q. who kept a diary in the 13th Va which became a book “Stonewall Jacksons Foot Cavalry”, and Sergeant Lewis Peyton of the 60th VA. Inf.. who recieved special mention from his colonel for gallantry during the Seven Days Battles. Another offspring that migrated was 1st Lt. Balie Peyton Jr., 20th Tennessee; who was killed at the head of the regiment at the battle of Fishing Creek/Mill Springs, KY. Major Charles S. Peyton of the 19th Virginia Infantry left us with the official report for Garnett’s Brigade at Gettysburg. During Pickett’s Charge, General Garnett was killed and every ranking regimental officer was either killed or wounded. Command of Garnett’s Brigade went to Major Charles S. Peyton. Although a distant cousin, I still find it very interesting to know he is of the same family as my g-grandmother Flora Payton Busenbark. I am proud to be a direct decscendant of the Peyton family of Virginia.

19th VA. FlagReport of Major Charles S. Peyton, Nineteenth Virginia Infantry, commanding Garnett’s brigade, Pickett’s division.

MAJOR: In compliance with instructions from division headquarters, I have the honor to report the part taken by this brigade in the late battle near Gettysburg, Pa., July 3.

Notwithstanding the long and severe marches made by the troops of this brigade, they reached the field about 9 a. m., in high spirits and in good condition. At about 12 p. m. we were ordered to take position behind the crest of the hill on which the artillery, under Colonel Alexander, was planted, where we lay during a most terrific cannonading, which opened at 1.30 p. m., and was kept up without intermission for one hour.

During the shelling, we lost about 20 killed and wounded. Among the killed was Lieutenant-Colonel Ellis, of the Nineteenth Virginia, whose bravery as a soldier, and his innocence, purity, and integrity as a Christian, have not only elicited the admiration of his own command, but endeared him to all who knew him.

At 2.30 p. m., the artillery fire having to some extent abated, the order to advance was given, first by Major-General Pickett in person, and repeated by General Garnett with promptness, apparent cheerfulness, and alacrity. The brigade moved forward at quick time. The ground was open, but little broken, and from 800 to 1, 000 yards from the crest whence we started to the enemy’s line. The brigade moved in good order, keeping up its line almost perfectly, notwithstanding it had to climb three high post and rail fences, behind the last of which the enemy’s skirmishers were first met and immediately drive in. Moving on, we soon met the advance line of the enemy, lying concealed in the grass on the slope, about 100 yards in front of his second line, which consisted of a stone wall about breast high, running nearly parallel to and about 30 paces from the crest of the hill, which was lined with their artillery.

The first line referred to above, after offering some resistance, was completely routed, and driven in confusion back to the stone wall. Here we captured some prisoners, which were ordered to the rear without a guard. Having routed the enemy here, General Garnett ordered the brigade forward, which it promptly obeyed, loading and firing as it advanced.

Up to this time we had suffered but little from the enemy’s batteries, which apparently had been much crippled previous to our advance, with the exception of one posted on the mountain, about 1 mile to our right, which enfiladed nearly our entire line with fearful effect, sometimes as many as 10 men being killed and wounded by the bursting of a single shell. From the point it had first routed the enemy, the brigade moved rapidly forward toward the stone wall, under a galling fire both from artillery and infantry, the artillery using grape and canister. We were now within about 75 paces of the wall, unsupported on the right and left, General Kemper being some 50 or 60 yards behind and to the right, and General Armistead coming up in our rear.

General Kemper’s line was discovered to be lapping on ours, when, deeming it advisable to have the line extended on the right to prevent being flanked, a staff officer rode back to the general to request him to incline to the right. General Kemper not being present (perhaps wounded at the time), Captain Fry, of his staff, immediately began his exertions to carry out the request, but, in consequence of the eagerness of the men in pressing forward, it was impossible to have the order carried out.

Our line, much shattered, still kept up the advance until within about 20 paces of the wall, when, for a moment, it recoiled under the terrific fire that poured into our ranks both from their batteries and from their sheltered infantry. At this moment, General Kemper came up on the right and General Armistead in rear, when the three lines, joining in concert, rushed forward with unyielding determination and an apparent spirit of laudable rivalry to plant the Southern banner on the wall of the enemy. His strongest and last line was instantly gained; the Confederate battle-flag waved over his defenses, and the fighting over the wall became hand to hand, and of the most desperate character; but more than half having already fallen, our line was found too weak to rout the enemy. We hoped for a support on the left [which had started simultaneously with ourselves], but hoped in vain. Yet a small remnant remained in desperate struggle, receiving a fire in front, on the right, and on the left, many even climbing over the wall, and fighting the enemy in his own trenches until entirely surrounded; and those who were not killed or wounded were captured, with the exception of about 300 who came off slowly, but greatly scattered, the identity of every regiment being entirely lost, and every regimental commander killed or wounded.

The brigade went into action with 1,287 men and about 140 officers, as shown by the report of the previous evening, and sustained a loss, as the list of casualties will show, of 941 killed, wounded, and missing, and it is feared, from all the information received, that the majority (those reported missing) are either killed or wounded.

It is needles, perhaps, to speak of conspicuous gallantry where all behaved so well. Each and every regimental commander displayed a cool bravery and daring that not only encouraged their own commands, but won the highest admiration from all those who saw them. They led their regiments in the fight, and showed, by their conduct, that they only desired their men to follow where they were willing to lead. But of our cool, gallant, noble brigade commander it may not be out of place to speak. Never had the brigade been better handled, and never has it done better service in the field of battle. There was scarcely an officer or man in the command whose attention was not attracted by the cool and handsome bearing of General Garnett, who, totally devoid of excitement or rashness, rode immediately in rear of his advancing line, endeavoring by his personal efforts, and by the aid of his staff, to keep his line well closed and dressed. He was shot from his horse while near the center of the brigade, within about 25 paces of the stone wall. This gallant officer was too well known to need further mention.

Captain [C. F.] Linthicum, assistant adjutant-general, Lieutenant [John S.] Jones, aide-de-camp, and Lieutenant Harrison, acting aide-de-camp, did their whole duty, and won the admiration of the entire command by their gallant bearing on the field while carrying orders from one portion of the line to the other, where it seemed almost impossible for any one to escape.

The conduct of Captain [Michael P.] Spessard, of the Twenty eighth Virginia, was particularly conspicuous. His son fell, mortally wounded, at his side; he stopped but for a moment to look on his dying son, gave him his canteen of water, and pressed on, with his company, to the wall, which he climbed, and fought the enemy with his sword in their own trenches until his sword was wrested from his hands by two Yankees; he finally made his escape in safety.

In making the above report, I have endeavored to be as accurate as possible, but have had to rely mainly for information on others, whose position gave them better opportunity for witnessing the conduct of the entire brigade than I could have, being with, and paying my attention to, my own regiment.

I am, major, with great respect, your obedient servant,

Chas. S. Peyton,
Major, Commanding.

The David Vroman Family; Patriots of Ohio

8 08 2009
Grave of Jonas B. Vroman; 15th O.V.I.

Grave of Jonas B. Vroman; 15th O.V.I.

Many families supported the Union’s cause and made great sacrifices during the War Between the States. One such family was the David Vroman family of Wyandot County, Ohio. David was the son of Isaac Vroman (Vrooman), of Schoharie County, Upstate New York. The families history can be traced to this area of the United States long before the French and Indian War. David was born, raised and married in New York, he removed to Wyandot County, Ohio in the late 1850’s.
At the outbreak of the war David’s oldest son; Henry David enlisted in the three month 15th Ohio Infantry at the age of 23. In this regiment, Henry would serve in West Virginia. The regiment was engaged before Philippi, Laurel Hill and Carrick’s Ford. He would return home and reenlist in the 101st Ohio Infantry on August 30, 1862. The regiment was at Perryville, Kentucky; after that campaign it participated in some skirmishes before Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Before the battle of Stones River Henry became very ill and was sent to an army hospital in Nashville, TN. On January 18, 1863 Henry David Vroman would die of disease, he is buried in the Nashville National Cemetery.
David (authors 3rd great-grandfather), at the age of 46, would enlist on November 9, 1861 as a mamber of Company D, 15th Ohio Infantry (3 year regiment). He would serve as a wagoner and also as a drummer for the regiment. Because of his advanced age and a winter in camp playing on his health, David was honorably discharged from the service on December 7, 1861. He would return home to his farm in Wyandot County, Ohio.
15th O.V.I. FlagIn early 1864, David’s son Jonas B. Vroman would enlist in early 1864. Taking after his father, Jonas would enlist as a recruit in the veteran 15th Ohio Infantry. This regiment had seen hard service at Shiloh, Stones River, Chickamauga and Chattanooga. Jonas had a lot to learn, friends and neighbors in his company from Wyandot County were sure to help him. In the spring of ’64 Sherman would start his Atlanta Campaign. Jonas is listed as being engaged in the battles of Buzzard Roost Gap, Resaca and Pickett’s Mill. The fight at Pickett’s Mill was one of the toughest fights the 15th participated in during the war. The regiment would charge uphill at an unseen enemy, that was ready for an attack while posted on high ground in very rough wooded terrian. It was a nightmare for the men of the 15th, who could make no headway aginst the Confederate lines, casualties were high in the 15th O.V.I.  Jonas would survive Pickett’s Mill and continue on the campaign. In late June Jonas would become ill and was sent to the army hospital in Chattanooga. The biggest fight of his life would take place for almost 2 months. On September 30, 1864 Jonas would loose his battle for life, his duty was done. He was laid to rest in the Chickamauga-Chattanooga National Cemetery.
David had wanted to serve his country, but his age and health would not let him. His sons would pick up where David had left off, but the price for the David Vroman family was two of his four sons. David would pass away on June 7, 1878 at Texas, Ohio and is buried in the town cemetery. His daughter Sophia would stay in Wyandot County after marrying Jeremiah Swihart.
Written by Scott Busenbark

Hardy M.B. Greer; 18th & 45th Tennessee Inf.

11 12 2008
Post-war image of Hardy Greer

Post-war image of Hardy Greer

Stephen P. Taylor; 31st Tennessee Inf.

9 12 2008

1864 Dalton issue flag of the 31st Tennessee Infantry

Stephen P. Taylor was born in 1837 Gibson County, Tennessee. He was the son of John D. and Mary (Pybass) Taylor. John D. was born in North Carolina circa 1807, he migrated first to Rutherford County, Tennessee and then to Gibson County, Tennesse with at least two brothers. The family owned a farm in district 12; the Tuckersville area of Gibson County. There were five children in John and Mary’s family, all appear to have helped on the farm as the family owned no slaves.

At the outbreak of the Civil War a local Militia Captain; James B. Robinson started recruiting men in the area to enlist into the Confederate Army. At one point he held a large picnic near Browning Springs in hopes of drawing recruits. Stephen Taylor enlisted as a private in this local company known as “Sons of the South”  at  Trenton, Tennessee on September 27, 1861. Stephen’s company was organized, along with nine other companies into the 31st Tennessee Infantry at Camp Trenton. The regiment reached the field on November 29, 1861 at Columbus, Kentucky, joining General Polk’s army for the purpose of defending the Mississippi River from invasion. They would be moved several times along the Mississippi River in early 1862; New Madrid, Missouri; Island No. 10 and Ft. Pillow. They would miss the battle of Shiloh on April 6th and 7th because of their duty at Ft. Pillow, Tennessee. During this time the regiment was reported as being “well armed with Enfield Rifles.”

After the Confederate defeat at Shiloh the regiment was moved to Corinth, Mississippi with the main body of the Confederate Army. Here they would face off with the Union Army for several weeks, Stephen and his comrade’s would be involved in several small skirmishes here.

During late April and early May there were several desertions within the regiment. One of the deserters had been the company wagoner, the job of the wagoner was to drive a wagon with the company mess equipment. Stephen would get the job, thanks in part to his relative; 1st Sergeant William W. Taylor of Company E. The new duty meant Stephen would draw extra pay, although the duty was not as easy as it sounds. It took a person who could care for and handle a team of horses. There were many hazards being in an army’s wagon train, bushwhackers, Union Cavalry raids,  and moving in a long slow wagon column on bad roads.

The regiment was placed in General Alexander P. Stewart’s brigade; later led by General Otto F. Strahl of the 4th Tennessee Infantry. In later years after the war, the men would say with pride that they were in Strahl’s Brigade.

The first large battle for the regiment was at Perryville, Kentucky. The 31st Tennessee lost 100 men killed and wounded, but had shown their grit to the other veteran regiments in the brigade. The 31st would fight at Murfreesboro, Tennessee; Chickamauga, Georgia; Missionary Ridge (Chattanooga) during 1862 and 1863. After the loss of Chattanooga the army spent the winter in Dalton, Georgia. Here the army was refitted and reorganized for the upcoming spring campaign. In early May 1864 the Union Army started the Atlanta Campaign, the regiment was under fire for 100 days. They were heavily engaged at Resaca, Georgia and Kennesaw Mountain, Georgia.

 By July of 1864 the Confederate Army was bottled up around the city of Atlanta. The battle of Peach Tree Creek was fought on July 20 outside of Atlanta; which ended in Confederate defeat. The Confederate Army under General John Bell Hood was going to try and push the Union Army back on July 22. Strahl’s Brigade would be in the thick of this fight. Every man was needed, including Stephen. It appears he was placed back on line with his regiment. The July 22nd battle would be known as the Battle of Atlanta. Strahl’s Brigade would attack the Union Army’s defencive line at a place Union soldier’s call Bald Hill. The attack started well, but Strahl’s line was soon broken. There were many Confederate prisoners taken, one of them was Stephen Taylor.

Stephen, along with many other prisoners,was sent to Louisville, Kentucky and then shipped to Camp  Chase, Ohio. He would stay at Camp Chase until Feb. 12, 1865. He was then moved to the P.O.W. Camp at Point Lookout, Maryland. By March 1st, 1865 he had been paroled. By the time Stephen reached Tennessee the war had ended.

Stephen returned to Gibson County after the war and started farming again. He was married in Gibson County to Miss Nancy L. White, the couple had no children. Sometime after 1880 Stephen and Nancy moved to Huntington,Carroll County, Tennessee.  In 1905 Stephen applied for a Confederate pension, which was granted to him. He gave the following written statement:

” I was a Confederate soldier, Company E, 31st Tennessee Infantry that enlisted (in) the service September 1861 and served through the war. I left Richmond Virginia March 1st 1865; having parole furlow for 90 days and the war closed before the furlow expired. These facts could be readily proven, but my comrades are all dead or there where abouts unknown. I am 69 years old, penny less and totally unable to do manual labor, have no estate what ever and no one legally bound for my support. I make this application only for the due necessity to which I am reduced -my post office address is Huntington, Carroll County, Tennessee.”

Stephen P. Taylor January 2, 1906

Another Confederate veteran gave a written statement to the Tennessee Pension Board on behalf of Stephen:

“I am well acquainted with Stephen P. Taylor, was with him at Richmond, Virginia March 1865. We left there on the 12th day of March, 1865 after being exchanged and went with him to Jackson, Tennessee where we parted way about March 22, 1865 when I went home to Carroll County, Tennessee. We were both paroled. I was a member of (the) 1st Kentucky Regiment; Jackson Regiment. Stephen P. Taylor belonged to (the) 31st Tennessee Regiment; Cheatham’s Command. I am well acquainted with said Taylor now and know  he is in needy circumstances and a worthy old Confederate Veteran and fully entitled to state pension. I have no interest in his claim for state pension except that justice be done.”

J.T. Smith; August 5th, 1905

Stephen is assumed to have died in Carroll County, Tennessee, date unknown. There are no death records for him and no cemetery record exists for Stephen or his wife.

Written by Scott Busenbark

The Fighting Pybass Brothers

9 12 2008
Samuel Pybass grave

Samuel Pybass grave

James Pybass grave

James Pybass grave

Gibson County Confederate Veterans
Gibson County Confederate Veterans


For myself, some of the most interesting family members that served during the Civil War  has to be the Pybass brothers of Gibson County, Tennessee. I have always been drawn to these boys for some unknown reason. The parents of the Pybass brothers were Nathaniel Pybass (b. 1810 Rutherford Co. Tenn.) and Paulina Allen Vaughn, they would have a total of eleven children and settle in Gibson County, Tennessee by 1850. The boys Grandparents (authors 4th Great Grandparents) were William Pybass and Elizabeth Greer; both  natives of North Carolina. They were living on the banks of Bradley’s Creek in Rutherford County, Tennessee by 1810. William enlisted in the Tennessee Militia during the War of 1812. He would not return home, he died a soldier on Feb. 6, 1815 at New Orleans. His wife would receive a soldiers pension for his service, she would later marry a Mr. James Yearwood.

Nathaniel Pybass would move his family into the West Tennessee community of Trenton, where he ran a tailor shop on the town square. At the outbreak of the Civil War his son Samuel Newell Pybass would leave his job as a tailor and enlist at the age of 23  at Germantown, Tennessee as a member of the “West Tennessee Riflemen” on May 15, 1861, this was one of the first Confederate units raised in Gibson County. The “West Tennessee Riflemen” would become company F, 4th Tennessee Infantry. After learning drill  the 4th Tenn. was moved to Columbus, Kentucky on September 5, 1861. Their mission was to fortify the high bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River; a major waterway that was thought to be the Union Army’s main route for the invasion of the south. Conditions, as well as the weather were very poor, many men became ill at this place. At some point Samuel became very sick, he would be confined to a bed in the army hospital. Samuel Newell Pybass would die of disease; inflammation of the bowels on October 18, 1861. His body was returned home and he was laid to rest in the Oaklawn Cemetery at Trenton.

On December 20th, 1862 Samuel’s brother Parks Jefferson Pybass would enlist in company F, 12th Kentucky Cavalry. Another brother; James Thomas Lewis Pybass enlisted on July 25, 1863 in company D of the 12th Kentucky Cavalry. A few companies of this regiment were raised in Kentucky, but more than one half of the regiment was raised from West Tennessee men. They would be in Lyon’s Brigade of cavalry that served under  General Nathan Bedford Forrest, who’s name was known and feared by Union commanders throughout the western theater of operations. Forrest’s men carried no saber’s, they were mostly armed with captured weapons; each trooper carried a rifle musket and two revolvers. These men fought more often then not  dismounted, advancing as infantry. P.J. and James would fight many actions in Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky. Both boys were engaged in the battle of Brice’s Cross Roads, Miss.; a battle that is still studied by military students to this day. P.J. would be captured during Forrest’s raid on Memphis, Tennessee and spend some time in a Union prison camp. By order of the Confederate War Department James would be transferred, along with the other Tennessee men in the 12th Kentucky Cavalry; into the 19th/20th Consolidated Tennessee Cavalry. James served until the surrender of Forrest’s command at Gainesville, Alabama on May 10, 1865. He would pass away July 19, 1872 at the age of 39, most likely from the hardships he endured during his Confederate service. He is buried beside his brother Samuel in the Oaklawn Cemetery; Trenton, Tennessee.

P.J. filed for a Tennessee Confederate pension, which was granted to him. On August 25, 1927 he gave a written statement of his service in the 12th Kentucky Cavalry to the Tennessee State Pension board:

” I Parks Jefferson Pybass, native of the State of Tennessee, resident at Trenton, Gibson County, Tennessee; do solemnly swear that I was born October 10, 1844, in Gibson County, Tennessee. I enlisted in the Confederate Army on December 20, 1862, in Company F, 12th Kentucky Cavalry; Colonel Faulkner, Commander; John M. Carroll, Captain; General Lyon’s Brigade. In battles at Tishomingo Creek (Brice’s Cross Roads), Harrisburg Mississippi, Athens Alabama (Sulphur Trestle), Pulaski Tennessee, Oxford Mississippi and other smaller skirmishes, was not wounded. I was captured near Memphis, held in prison at Alton, Illinois for about three months, and exchanged at City Point, Virginia. Paroled at Gainesville, Alabama.”

P.J. Pybass

After the war P.J. would return to Trenton and marry Stella Hooker, they would  raise a family of two daughters. P.J. would be active in the United Confederate Veterans, attending veteran reunions. He would live a full life, passing away on September 19, 1934. He is buried beside his wife in Oaklawn Cemetery, Trenton, Tennessee.

Written by Scott Busenbark