Bull Run Prisoners

8 08 2007

John Hoptak at The 48th Pennsylvania Veteran Volunteer Infantry has an interesting post regarding Union prisoners, some taken at Bull Run, who were held for an unusually long period in “retaliation” for the treatment of Confederate privateers taken with the schooner Enchantress.  Check it out; it’s good stuff.  I wrote about some of these prisoners here, here and here.

11thny.jpgThis photo is from an 11th NY website, and shows prisoners from the regiment at Castle Pinckney.  While one of the men is shown wearing baggy trousers and sash, it should be noted that the color of the 11th NY zouave uniform was gray, and most of the men were wearing blue pants during the battle.  Right click on the thumbnail for the full size image.





Good Luck Chris

6 08 2007

I received an email on Friday from friend Chris Lewis of Civil War Times Illustrated, in which he wrote that he will be stepping down as the magazine’s editor as of this coming Friday, August 10.  You can go here, here or here to get information and opinions on the content of the email and what it all may mean.  I just want to wish Chris the best of luck, and I’m sure our paths will cross again at some point on down the road.





John Gross Barnard

5 08 2007

John Gross Barnard; born Sheffield, MA, 5/19/15; suffered inherited deafness; appointment to USMA secured by relative Peter Buel Porter, John Quincy Adams’s Secretary of War; West Point Class of 1833 (2 of 43); Bvt 2nd Lt engineers 7/1/33; 2nd Lt 5/15/35; Capt 7/7/38; Bvt Maj for meritorious conduct while serving in the enemy’s country 5/30/48; Maj 12/13/58; his assignments prior to the outbreak of the rebellion included assisting in the construction of coastal defenses, the improvement of New York Harbor, and surveying the battlefields of the Mexican War; Engineer Dept. of Washington, 4/28/61 to 7/2/61 – charged with construction of the defenses of Washington; USN Blockade Strategy Board, 6/61 to 9/61; Engineer Dept. of the Northeast, 7/2/61 to 8/20/61; Engineer Army of the Potomac (AotP), 8/20/61 to 8/16/62; BGUSV 9/23/61 (n 12/21/61 c 3/24/62); Bvt Col for gallant and meritorious service in the Peninsula Campaign, 6/30/62; Engineer Defenses of Washington, AotP, 8/20/62 to 9/3/62; Defenses of Washington, 9/3/62 to 2/2/63; Engineer 22nd Corps Dept. of Washington 2/2/63 to 5/35/64; Lt Col engineers 3/3/63; BGUSA 3/22/64 (nomination withdrawn at his own request 6/11/64); Engineer AotP 5/25/64 to 6/5/64; Engineer General Headquarters 6/5/64 to 7/4/64; Bvt MGUSV for meritorious and distinguished service during the war 7/4/64 (n 7/4/64 c 7/4/64); Bvt BGUSA for gallant and meritorious service in the campaign which resulted in the surrender of the Army of Northern VA 3/13/65 (n 4/10/66 c 5/4/66); Bvt MGUSA for gallant and meritorious service in the field during the war 3/13/65 (n 3/8/66 c 5/4/66); Honor Guard for Lincoln Funeral 4/65; Col 12/28/65; mustered out of volunteers 1/15/66; post-war assignments including the reevaluation of coastal defenses in the age of the ironclad and improving the mouth of the Mississippi River; retired 1/2/81; authored Notes on Sea-Coast Defense (1861), The C.S.A. and the Battle of Bull Run (1862), Report of the Engineer and Artillery Operations of the Army of the Potomac (1863), The Peninsular Campaign and its Antecedents (1864), and Eulogy on the Late Brevet Major-General Joseph G. Totten (1866); co-founder of the National Academy of Sciences; died  Detroit, MI, 5/14/82; buried Barnard Cemetery, Sheffield, MA.

Sources: Cullum, Biographical Register of the Officers and Graduates of the U. S. Military Academy, Vol. I, pp 530-535; Eicher & Eicher, Civil War High Commands, pp 116, 706, 710, 718; 732; Heitman, Historical Register and Dictionary of the U. S. Army, Vol. I p 191; Sifakis, Who was Who in the American Civil War, p 33; Warner, Generals in Blue, pp 19-20.

barnard1.jpgbarnard3.jpgbarnard2.jpgbarnardgrave.jpg

 Photo credits: a, b, c – www.generalsandbrevets.com; d – www.findagrave.com

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The McDowell Monument

1 08 2007

  

mcdowellshiloh.jpg 

The McDowell headquarters monument is situated just west of the Stone House at the intersection of the Sudley Springs Road and the Warrenton Turnpike.  That is, just about 800 miles west of that point, on the battlefield of Shiloh, at the intersection of the Hamburg-Purdy Road and route 142/22.  I took this photo during my June trip to Tennessee and Mississippi. 

Colonel John A. McDowell was a brigade commander in Brigadier General William T. Sherman’s division of Major General U. S. Grant’s Army of the Tennessee during the Battle of Shiloh.  He was also a brother of the commander of the Union forces at the Battle of First Bull Run, Irvin McDowell. 

John McDowell’s command at Shiloh was comprised of the 40th IL, 46th OH, his own 6th IA, and the 6th IN Battery.  (McDowell had relieved the 6th IA’s Lieutenant Colonel and placed a captain in command of the regiment.)  Positioned on the far right (western) flank of Sherman’s line, McDowell’s brigade missed much of the heavier fighting experienced by Sherman’s other three brigades.  Consequently, McDowell does not get a lot of ink in the various Shiloh campaign studies. 

This list of officers of the regiment notes that John Adair McDowell was a resident of Keokuk, IA (he was born in Ohio), and was 39 when he became colonel of the regiment on June 20, 1861.  He resigned his commission on March 12, 1863.  Here’s a history of the regiment. 

John is a shadowy figure, due in part to the fact that, despite serving in brigade command, he was never made a general officer.  I found some mention of him in Sherman’s Civil War, a collection of W. T. Sherman correspondence edited by Brooks Simpson at Civil Warriors. 

On page 267, Sherman mentions that McDowell delivered a speech prior to the presentation of a saddle to the general.  On page 323 he writes to Grant in Nov. 1862 that he feels McDowell among others is fit for brigade command.  On pages 341-342 he establishes the familial relationship between John and Irvin in a December 14, 1862 letter to the latter (in which he expressed his support for the embattled Irvin, who was suffering under a cloud of suspicion following Second Bull Run): 

Your brother John A. McDowell has been with me nearly a year commanding one of my Brigades and I left him a few days since at College Hill near Oxford in command of as good a Brigade as is in our whole army.  He is a good kind hearted Gentleman, full of zeal for our cause and I parted with him with feelings of great kindness.  I have urged his name for promotion and I hope successfully.  We have often talked of you, and through him I have sent you many expressions of my personal regard for your high character as a Patriot and Soldier. 

 Other than noting the event in a March 13, 1863 letter to his wife, Sherman does not detail the circumstances of McDowell’s resignation.  Lieutenant Colonel and future general John M. Corse took command of the 6th IA. 

Sherman also mentions on two occasions Major Malcolm McDowell of Ohio, a paymaster in his command.  There was a Malcolm McDowell who was a signal officer on Irvin’s staff at First Bull Run, and Malcolm was involved in preferring charges against Colonel Thomas Worthington as described in Sherman’s letter to Thomas Ewing Sr. on January 16, 1863.  As John McDowell is mentioned in this same letter as having complained about Worthington, I don’t think it a stretch that this Malcolm is the same Malcolm who was with Irvin on July 21.  On page 76 of Historic Families of Kentucky you’ll see that Abram Irvine McDowell of Columbus, OH had three sons – Irvin, John and Malcolm – so I’m pretty confident the fellows I’ve mentioned above are the three brothers.  I’m positive Major Malcolm is not the fellow pictured here:     

clockwork.jpg 

This guy makes looking for info on Major Malcolm on the web a real pain, tempting one to acts of ultraviolence.  Not to worry, he’s just here to check the meter. 

If you have any more info on John or Malcolm, please let me know. 

I’ve been remiss in posting photos and tales of my visit to Shiloh, and I’ll try to make up for that in the months ahead, assuming I can find some sort of Bull Run connection.  Speaking of that, here’s a random headstone I ran across at the national cemetery in Corinth, MS:   

manninggrave.jpg 

 

 

 








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