E. B. C. Cash’s Report

24 02 2008

  8th-sc-flag.jpgLots of hyperlinks in the following – be sure to click on them to get the full effect!

alfred-ely.jpgA reference is made in the report of Col. E. B. C. Cash of the 8th SC of the capture of Congressman Alfred Ely of NY (left).  A pretty tame account, though the story that is handed down and can be found in Ely’s diary is more colorful.  According to the gentleman from Rochester, when taken before Cash the colonel leveled his pistol at Ely’s head and swore, G—d d—n your white livered soul.  I’ll blow your brains out on the spot!  Cash was prevented by subordinates from carrying out his threat.  Based on his post-war history, I have little doubt that Cash was in earnest. 

Ellerbe Boggan Crawford Cash, though born in 1823 in North Carolina, was raised in his mother’s native South Carolina, and eventually passed the bar before taking over her family’s plantation in the Chesterfield District, near Cheraw.  He served in the general assembly and rose to Major General in the militia.  At the outset of the war, he was elected colonel of the 8th SC.

When the regiment reorganized in the spring of 1862, Cash was either not reelected or resigned because he was not promoted.  Cash remained in reserve or with the state militia in South Carolina for the remainder of the war.  He was an outspoken opponent of Reconstruction, and ran against Wade Hampton for governor because he felt Hampton was too soft to represent the white population of the state.

Perhaps Cash is best known for his participation in what is recognized as the last duel fought in South Carolina.  On July 5, 1880, Cash shot and killed Col. William M. Shannon of Camden in a formal duel resulting from a legal action against Mrs. Cash in which Shannon was lead counsel.  (UPDATE: Shannon had raised the Kirkwood Rangers, which became one of the five companies of the 7th SC Cavalry.  This regiment was home to Alexander C. Haskell and Dr. E. M. Boykin – hence, Shannon and his brothers are referred to often in Mary Chesnut’s diary.)  Cash was tried for murder and dueling and, after one mistrial, was acquitted.  Legislation was enacted thereafter outlawing dueling in South Carolina (though I’m a little confused at this, because Cash was tried for dueling, which kind of leads me to believe it was already illegal; one aspect of the new legislation was that it rendered ineligible for public office anyone who had participated in a duel).

The image of the battle flag of the 8th SC above is from this site, which has a biography of Cash.  This site is an account of the duel. Herehere, here, here, and here are New York Times articles on the trial, though there are more – beware, the NYT archive is a huge time-sucker!  UPDATE: Here is a link to a 1932 Time Magazine article on the duel. 

The Colonel’s son, VMI alum W. Bogan Cash, was also not unfamiliar with violence.  He was accused of killing at least two men, and before he could be brought to justice was himself killed while resisting a sheriff’s posse in 1884.  You can read about him here and here, and here is his VMI bio – surprisingly, he served as Governor Hampton’s chief-of-staff.  His father was also indicted as an accessory to his son’s crimes, but was I think not prosecuted.

Cash died at his home in Chesterfield in 1888, and was buried next to his desperado son.  Here is his obituary.

I couldn’t find any photos of Shannon or either of the Cashes on the web, but if you go here you’ll find a pdf document and can scroll to their images.  (That link is broken, but I think it was a draft of Carnival of Blood, which you can find along with the photos on page 20 here.)  Unfortunately the document is incomplete.  UPDATE: Ok, I used my noggin and figured out how to get the images of E. B. C. Cash, Shannon, and W. B. Cash as a VMI cadet – these are from the link in this paragraph:

ebccash.jpg shannon.jpg wbcash.jpg

Coming on the heels of my finishing The Bloody Shirt, perhaps all this is not as surprising to learn as it otherwise might have been.  I’ll have a review of that book up within the next few days.

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#92 – Col. R. C. W. Radford

24 02 2008

 

Report of Col. R. C. W. Radford, Thirtieth Virginia Cavalry

O.R.– SERIES I–VOLUME 2 [S# 2] — CHAPTER IX, pp 532-533

HEADQUARTERS CAVALRY,

Camp Vienna, August 1, 1861

CAPTAIN: In accordance with instructions from headquarters First Brigade, Army of the Potomac, I have the honor to report that the cavalry of First Brigade, under my command, was under the fire of the enemy’s heavy guns on the morning of the 21st of July for several hours, and was compelled to change its positions several times to avoid the fire. An order was received from General Beauregard about 11 o’clock a.m. to support the left wing of the Army of the Potomac at the stone bridge, which was the right wing of our forces, when we were again under heavy fire of the enemy’s guns, In advancing the cavalry was divided as follows: Under my own command I had at first but one squadron, composed of the companies of Captains Radford and Pitzer, the latter in charge of Lieutenant Breckinridge. I was joined by Captains Terry, Alexander, Wickham, and Powell, with their companies, while moving towards stone bridge. The remaining companies were placed under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Munford.

While en route to my position I received an order from the commanding general to support General Jackson’s right, and for several hours succeeding was under heavy fire from the enemy’s cannon, throwing shell and rifled-cannon balls. As soon as it was discovered that the enemy were giving way I received a verbal order through Colonel Lay to charge upon them and cut off their retreat.

It affords me much pleasure at this point to have an opportunity of commending the gallant conduct of the companies under my own command, who charged upon a battery, killing the horses attached to two pieces, taking between sixty and eighty prisoners and the standard of Colonel Corcoran’s Sixty-ninth New York Regiment, and leaving forty-two dead bodies of the enemy upon the field. I have no hesitation in saying that the charge made by my own command, in connection with that made by the command under Lieutenant-Colonel Munford, composed of Captains Payne, Ball, Langhorne, and Hale, caused the jam at Cub Creek Bridge, which resulted in the capture of fourteen pieces of cannon, their ammunition and wagons, five forges, thirty wagons and ambulances, and some forty or fifty horses. I base this opinion on the fact that we were in advance of all our forces, and by our charge the enemy were thrown into wild confusion before us, their vehicles of all sorts going off at full speed and in the greatest disorder.

Having dispersed the enemy in our front in the direction of Cub Run bridge I then charged upon them between Cub Run and Bull Run, but soon came on a column of infantry, about five thousand strong, posted on each side of the road in thick woods, supported by a battery of three pieces, blocking up the road. All three of these pieces immediately opened upon my command, throwing the cavalry into some confusion, and killing Capt. Winston Radford, charging at the head of his company, and by his side Corporal Alexander T. Irvine, of his company, also Sergeant Edward Fountaine and Privates Richard W. Saunders and Philip G. Spindle, of Captain Wickham’s company. Lieut. Boldman H. Bowles, of Captain Wickham’s company, was separated from his company during the charge and was killed, also Private Fuqua, of Captain Terry’s company. Of all the brave and gallant men who fell on the 21st instant fighting for their homes and freedom, none died covered with more glory than the braves who fell in this charge. Peace be with them!

I cannot speak too highly of the conduct of Colonel Chisolm, aide to General Beauregard, who volunteered to guide my command by the nearest route to intercept the retreating enemy. He was among the foremost in making the charge, and distinguished himself by his gallantry, coolness, and bravery. He was of great assistance to me. My adjutant, B. H. Burk, was with me throughout the entire day, and acted with great coolness and bravery, taking Colonel Corcoran, of the Sixty-ninth New York Regiment, with several other prisoners. All the officers of the command distinguished themselves equally. I can make no distinction between them. The following are the names of the officers who were in the charge: Captains Terry, Wickham, Powell, Radford, and Alexander; Lieutenants Harris, Breckinridge, Johnson, Halsey, Beale, Price, Page, Tardy, Waller, Newton, Watts, Izzard, Kelso, Triplett, Bowles, and Timberlake.

The following men were wounded, viz: Private B. T. Witt, of Captain Winston Radford’s company, and Privates James H. H. Figgat and William T. Marks, of Captain Pitzer’s company; also C. Turpin, of Captain Terry’s company.

Four horses were killed and two wounded in Captain Radford’s company; one horse wounded in Captain Powell’s company; one horse killed, one wounded, and one missing in Captain Wickham’s company, and three horses wounded in Captain Terry’s company.

The non-commissioned officers and men of all the companies did their duty in every respect.

Charles, the colored servant of Adjutant Bark, unaided, captured a prisoner armed with gun and pistol, and turned him over to the commanding general of the First Brigade.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. C. W. RADFORD,

Colonel Thirtieth Virginia Cavalry

Captain STEVENS,

Asst. Adjt. Gen., First Brigade, Army of the Potomac





#91 – Col. E. B. C. Cash

24 02 2008

 

Report of Col. E. B. C. Cash, Eighth South Carolina Infantry

O.R.– SERIES I–VOLUME 2 [S# 2] — CHAPTER IX, pp 530-532

HDQRS. EIGHTH REGIMENT SOUTH CAROLINA VOLS.,

Camp Victory, July 31, 1861

In obedience to orders from the general commanding the First Brigade, Army of the Potomac, I beg leave to submit the following report of the operations of the Eighth Regiment South Carolina Volunteers during the 21st instant:

Early on Sunday morning, the 21st instant, heavy canonading and rapid discharges of musketry were heard about two miles to my left, and about 11 o’clock a.m. I received orders through Colonel Kershaw to move forward and engage the enemy. As soon as my regiment was put in motion the batteries of the enemy on the opposite side of the run were turned upon us, the balls striking very near my line, but doing no injury. The two regiments, proceeding rapidly to the scene of action, were formed in order of battle some two or three hundred yards from the ground which afterwards proved to be to us the main point of battle. For a detailed account of this movement I ask to refer to the official report of Colonel Kershaw, the senior colonel in command.

My orders were to form on Colonel Kershaw’s left. The greater portion of my regiment being at this time in a dense wood and not receiving the order immediately, Colonel Kershaw preceded me in the march and arrived a few minutes before upon the field of battle. Here he changed his front, placing his immediate command at right angles to my own. Advancing, I found a considerable force fronting my line and concealed by a rail fence. For a time we supposed them to be our friends. Captain Pawley, of my staff, boldly moved forward with a view to ascertain the real character of those thus concealed. He had advanced some twenty paces when he was fired upon. Escaping uninjured, he immediately returned the fire, killing one of the enemy, as they now proved to be. I at once ordered the firing from my line to commence. After several well-directed volleys had been delivered the enemy (zouaves) were driven back from their position. Falling back in great confusion, they were rallied in a valley some distance in the rear, where the enemy was posted in great numbers.  From this point they returned my fire, killing five of my men and wounding several.

Seeing that the enemy were well acquainted with my position, and being unable to return their fire, they using guns of longer range than those in the hands of my men, and it being out of my power to advance without exposing the regiment to a cross-fire from-the enemy and Colonel Kershaw’s regiment, I ordered a flank movement to the left, intending to fall upon the enemy’s right. Unfortunately my order was not heard along the whole line, owing to the noise of battle in our front. Order, however, was soon restored, and the regiment advanced, receiving an occasional shot from the enemy, the mass having retired beyond a hill in rear of the position held by them when my flank movement commenced.

After a short delay I was ordered by Colonel Kershaw to follow his command in the direction of the stone bridge. While executing this order I was met by General Beauregard, who ordered me to dislodge a body of the enemy supposed to be in a wood to my left. I at once proceeded to discharge this duty, but found that the orders of the general had been already executed by a body of cavalry. I continued in pursuit of the enemy towards the stone bridge. At this time the remnant of Hampton’s Legion was attached to my regiment, and placed under my command.

After crossing the stone bridge I found Colonel Kershaw’s command drawn up on the right of the road, and was ordered by that officer to take position on the left, Captain Kemper occupying the road. We continued to advance in this order, I deploying as skirmishers to the front Captain Hoole’s company, who drove the enemy before them. Occasionally the artillery of the enemy would fire upon us, but without effect. After continuing the pursuit for some two and a half or three miles we came in full view of the heavy columns of the retreating enemy. The regiments were halted, and Captain Kemper commenced a rapid and well-directed fire upon them, which caused them to abandon their guns, wagons, &c., and completed the defeat. The enemy now fled in the utmost confusion, throwing away everything which at all impeded his flight. Too much praise cannot be awarded to Captain Kemper for the manner in which he managed his guns on this occasion. Directing the fire, he displayed all the attributes of a brave, gallant, and accomplished officer. It was during this pursuit that my sergeant-major, W. S. Mullins, took as a prisoner Mr. Ely, a member of Congress from New York, who armed with a revolver, had come upon the field to enjoy the pleasure of witnessing our defeat.

The enemy being hopelessly routed, I was ordered by Colonel Kershaw to send forward a detachment from my regiment to take possession of the cannon deserted by the enemy and bring them within our lines, fearing that these might rally and attempt to retake them. Captain W. H. Evans and fifty men promptly volunteered for this service, and well and faithfully discharged their duty. I remained upon the ground with my command until all the pieces which could be moved were carried to the rear, and at 2.30 o clock a.m. on Monday returned to the stone bridge, taking position on Colonel Kershaw’s left. Here we remained until ordered to advance to this place.

My officers and men behaved gallantly during this trying ordeal, displaying that heroism and bravery which have ever characterized Southern troops. Where all behaved so well I would do violence to my own feelings were I to institute any comparisons by individualizing any as particularly distinguished for meritorious conduct. I would mention as a fact worthy to be recorded that every member of the regimental color guard was wounded.

Annexed to this report is a list of the killed and wounded of my regiment.

I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,

 E. B. C. CASH,

Colonel Eighth Regiment South Carolina Volunteers

 Brig. Gen. M. L. Bonham








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