Brig. Gen. Philip St. George Cocke to Col. Robert S. Garnett, on Troop Strength

25 11 2020

CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN MARYLAND, PENNSYLVANIA, VIRGINIA, AND WEST VIRGINIA FROM APRIL 16 TO JULY 31, 1861

CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. – CONFEDERATE

O. R. – Series I – VOLUME 2 [S #2] CHAPTER IX, pp. 818-819

Headquarters Potomac Department,
Culpeper Court-House, Va., May 8, 1861.

Col. R. S. Garnett:

Your order of May 7, this moment received, stating that “The general in command is in want of information from you as to the strength and organization of your command, and begs that you will supply him with it at the earliest possible moment. The return due on the 1st instant by General Orders, No. 4, has not been received. The general desires particularly to know with what force you can take the field, provided any movement is made against you from Washington; how it would be composed, officered, and what service could be counted on from it.” I have to say in reply that, coming to this command with “naked hands” and in my plantation dress, arriving in Alexandria on the morning of the 22d of April, I have had everything to do towards organization, with extremely limited means of accomplishing anything. It has been entirely impracticable, in consequence of the want of my proper staff, until very recently, to initiate the means of obtaining the regular, formal, and full company returns and other returns which would show the strength and organization of the weak, unorganized, and widely-scattered force under my command.

The assistant adjutant-general, since his appointment and entrance upon duty, has taken the most active steps to accomplish the objects desired by the commanding general. Those steps will be persevered in. Such partial returns as I have been able to obtain from time to time from captains, both in regard to number of men, arms, and ammunition, and general equipment, have been forwarded to the headquarters at Richmond, and will be found on file there.

The assistant adjutant-general, Jones, has this morning left me, by my order, under the pressing emergency of sending the only experienced officer of the army at my command to march with the Powhatan troop this moment en route for Manassas Junction, to assist in collecting, establishing, and organizing at that point the force that I may be able to command, to carry into effect the order of the general-in-chief, received yesterday, to occupy and hold that point against any probable attack of the enemy. I propose to follow myself to-morrow with such other forces as I can gather, going “by rail” to the same point, and thus to effect a contemporaneous arrival at Manassas Junction. This necessary absence of the assistant adjutant-general from these headquarters, together with the yet unorganized state of the general staff and the inexperience of many of the captains of many of the companies, will yet cause some delay in making regular army returns.

I beg, however, that the general-in-chief will have collated from my dispatches and reports from the beginning the information therein imparted in this connection, and which may thus furnish him with an approximate estimate and exhibit at least of the available forces heretofore and now at my command.

In order to facilitate the accomplishment of this object, I will here briefly indicate from the best sources I possess the present character and disposition of what available force I have. (See statement inclosed.)

Very respectfully,

PHILIP ST. GEO. COCKE,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Potomac Department.

[Inclosure.]

Headquarters Potomac Department,
Culpeper Court-House, May 8,1861.

Company E, Sixth Battalion, Capt. S. H. Devaughn, 100 men in all, 50 muskets, .58 caliber; no ammunition.

Company H, Sixth Battalion, Capt. M. Marye, 69 men in all, 50 muskets, .58 caliber; no ammunition; in Alexandria now.

Company G, Sixth Battalion, Lieut. A. Herbert, 88 men in all, 51 muskets, .69 caliber; no ammunition; in Alexandria now.

Company, Fairfax Rifles, W. H. Dulany, captain, 51 men armed, and have 940 cartridges; Fairfax Station.

Company, Washington Volunteers, Captain Sherman, 113 men, unarmed and ununiformed; no ammunition; here.

Company, Richardson Guards, Capt. J. Welsh, 80 men, 1,000 caps and cartridges and equipments; Madison Court-House.

Company, Home Guards, J. Latouche, 100 men, flint-lock muskets, caliber .69; in Alexandria; no equipments or ammunition.

Two companies, Irish, now at Manassas Junction, with altered muskets; no equipments or ammunition.

Company, Captain Porter, now here, 71 men, unarmed and unequipped; no ammunition.

Company, artillery, Capt. Del. Kemper, 86 men, 4 brass 6-pounders, 35 sabers, 67 rounds fixed ammunition, and 25 loose ball; now here; part leave to-morrow for Manassas.

Company, Powell’s troop of cavalry, in Alexandria, 53 men.

Company, J. Shac Green, troop of cavalry, in Amissville, 61 men; will be at Manassas to-morrow.

Company, M. Dulany Ball, troop of cavalry, equipped; now in Alexandria.

Company, W. H. Payne, troop of cavalry; now in Warrenton, holding public property.

Company, John F. Lay, troop of cavalry; left for Manassas Junction to-day; well equipped with ammunition; several have no uniform or pistols.

Two companies in Charlottesville not yet reported.

PHILIP ST. GEO. COCKE,
Brigadier- General, Commanding.

—————

Assistant Adjutant General David R. Jones

S. H. Devaughan – Co. E, 17th VA Infantry

Morton Marye – Co. A, 17th VA Infantry

A. Herbert – Co. H, 17th VA Infantry

W. H. Dulany – Co. D, 17th VA Infantry

Charles K. Sherman – Co. E, 1st VA Infantry (thanks J. Soffe)

J. Welsh – Co. A, 7th VA Infantry (thanks J. Soffe)

J. Latouche – Alexandria Home Guards (thanks J. Soffe)

J. C. Porter – Co. C, 7th VA Infantry (thanks J. Soffe)

Deleware Kemper – Alexandria Light Artillery

E. B. Powell – Fairfax Cavalry, Radford’s Troop, 30th VA Cavalry

John Shackleford Green – Co. B, 6th VA Cavalry

Mottram Dulany Ball – Border Guards/Fairfax Cavalry. Captured 5/24/61 at Alexandria. Proled and served as scout for G. T. Beauregard prior to exchange. Exchanged 9/21/1862. Later Lt. Col. of 11th VA Cavalry Reported as captured at Alexandria with his troop on May 28, 1861. (thanks J. Soffe)

William H. Payne – Black Horse Troop, Munford’s Battalion, 30th VA Cavalry

John F. Lay – Powhatan Troop, G. T. Beauregard’s Escort





Brig. Gen. Philip St. George Cocke to Maj. Gen. Robert E. Lee on Status and Needs

18 11 2020

CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN MARYLAND, PENNSYLVANIA, VIRGINIA, AND WEST VIRGINIA FROM APRIL 16 TO JULY 31, 1861

CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. – CONFEDERATE

O. R. – Series I – VOLUME 2 [S #2] CHAPTER IX, pp. 786-787

Headquarters Potomac Department,
Culpeper Court-House, Fa., April 28, 1861—12.30 p. m.

General Lee, Commander-in-Chief, Richmond, Va.:

Having completed the requisite arrangements at Alexandria, and succeeded in informing myself of the actual state of things at that outpost of my command, in sight of the enemy, I proceeded this morning, by the 7 o’clock train, accompanied by the assistant adjutant-general, my aide, and secretary, towards this place, which I reached at 10 a. m., and where I propose, for some time to come, to establish my headquarters. I left all quiet and composed at Alexandria, where by my presence, during the suddenly augmented flow of Northern vandalism through Annapolis, I was so fortunate as to avert alarm and panic.

Intelligence first reached me, ever finding a solution through my knowledge of and confident faith in the existing status, not immediately, in my opinion, threatened to be overthrown, so long as there is nothing more than a mere persistence in a course on the part of the enemy, long ago initiated, and even now only intensified and strengthened; thus solving, as I did, the thousand sensations, rumors, and accounts that poured in upon me during my whole stay in Alexandria.

I have been enabled to infuse the same confidence into the minds of the leading citizens of the place, to have secured their confidence, and to have left them for the present tranquil and firm; whilst at the same time I have provided to organize the few troops in that extreme outpost; to provide for strengthening the same for the present up to about one thousand men; to establishing my communications in every direction, and thence to these headquarters; to throw myself in connection with various persons and sources of information at Alexandria; to inform myself as correctly as possible as to the number, efficiency, movements, and animus of the enemy, and by every means in my power to urge on such an organization, drilling, and discipline of the troops of that post as would best prepare them for the trying position they occupy.

In coming here, sir, I find myself, as upon my first arrival in Alexandria, “with naked hands.”

Colonel Jones [*], fortunately assigned to me as assistant adjutant-general, is the first Army officer to report for duty within my command. He promptly arrived in Alexandria last evening, and is with me here to-day. He will know what to do with his department, but I want an assistant quartermaster-general, a chief of the medical department, an ordnance officer, a chief of military engineering of talent. I had heretofore insinuated a preference in this last connection. I want arms. I am expecting from fifteen hundred to two thousand guns from Harper’s Ferry, when they shall be able to fit them up from the wreck of that place. I want a chief of artillery ; I want powder; two or three batteries of field artillery (6-pounders), with caissons, ammunition, complete for service, &c.

My part now will be to rally the men of the fine country around me, to establish camps of instruction, to wit: Leesburg, Warrenton, headquarters, and at or near Dangerfield, in supporting distance of Alexandria. I want camp equipage for the various encampments above indicated.

In regard to Harper’s Ferry, that most important strategic point on my left, and in connection with which I have not yet been able to place myself in a satisfactory attitude and connection owing to the lack of telegraph communication; of continued rail; for want of full understanding with the chief of command at that position; for want of the requisite and reliable information of all the various circumstances and conditions affecting the present military state of things at that post.

I have, since my arrival here, indicated the plan of sending Assistant Adjutant-General Jones, by rail, to-morrow, to that point, to obtain all such information, and to report to me accurately and fully the present condition of things there with as little delay as possible.

PHILIP ST. GEO. COCKE,
Brigadier- General, Potomac Department, Commanding.

[*David R. Jones]





Brig. Gen. Philip St. George Cocke to Maj. Gen. Robert E. Lee on Moving Headquarters to Culpeper Court-House

17 11 2020

CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN MARYLAND, PENNSYLVANIA, VIRGINIA, AND WEST VIRGINIA FROM APRIL 16 TO JULY 31, 1861

CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. – CONFEDERATE

O. R. – Series I – VOLUME 2 [S #2] CHAPTER IX, p. 785

Alexandria, Va., April 27, 1861.

General Lee, Commander-in-Chief:

Having succeeded in accomplishing the objects of taking up my temporary headquarters at this place, I proceed to-morrow morning to Culpeper Court-House, by the 6 o’clock train, which, as at present advised, will be my headquarters for some time to come. Colonel Jones[*], having arrived, will accompany me to Culpeper Court-House. I have arranged for my communications, through the medium of rail, wire, and courier, to headquarters, and I have, also, through a private chain of couriers (hence through Maryland to Baltimore), connected with General Steuart, in that city. My first volunteer aid, John S. Barbour, jr., remaining here, will receive dispatches at Alexandria.

PHILIP ST. GEO. COCKE.

[*David R. Jones]





“Ensis,” Co. C*, 18th Mississippi Infantry, On the Battle and Aftermath

30 06 2020

Correspondence of the Citizen.
—————

Camp Near Stone Bridge, Va.,
July 30, 1861.

Dear Citizen: – The 17th and 18th Regiments now find themselves at this new encampment, after much marching and exposure to the weather, and are attached to a new brigade. This re-organization, so decidedly agreeable to us, has been brought about, we suspect, by the freely expressed dissatisfaction which was felt by the two regiments, both in rank and file, towards our former Brigadier (D. R. Jones,) and we have now the pleasure to claim as our official head, the cool, chivalrous and experienced Gen. Evans.

You have doubtless been fully informed that the partial failure of our attack upon the enemy’s left wing battery, in the engagement on Sunday last, was entirely owing to the mismanagement, ignorance, and, I must say, military incompetence of our immediate leader. Being ordered to charge bayonets when at a distance of five hundred yards from an overwhelming enemy posted and entrenched upon and almost inaccessible hill, with two tremendous hills and a ravine at least seventy-five feet between us, we think displayed too rash and an indifference about the welfare of his men and too little of the general to be borne by regiments which, by their integral composition and proficiency in drill, are in every way prepared to sustain the high honor of their State. The ravine was utterly impassible in the charge; and to have stood there upon it’s brink, in the midst of the deadly and terrific storm of grape, canister and bombs which about ten heavy pieces of artillery thundered upon them, would have been sheer madness. The order to retire was therefore given, and although the Yankees immediately retreated and joined the general rout, yet, in the minds of some persons, uninformed as to the facts, our regiments sustained some discredit.

Our 2nd Lieutenant was a few days ago taken from us by the “Camden Rifles,” to supply the place of their lamented Captain (Adam McWillie); and the result of an election in the “Confederates,” to fill the place of Judge Hill, has just this moment been announced in favor of our popular Sergeant Hugh Love, for whose gallantry in action and agreeability in camp, every soldier can vouch. The unsuccessful aspirant was our worthy friend Sergeant Rucker.*

We are now encamped upon the edge of the main battle field. There remains to mark the spot only a few dead horses, the scars of the cannon-shot and graves of the fallen. The marks of the enemy’s flight are all over the country, and most remarkably did they exemplify the scriptural assertion, “the wicked flee when no man pursueth.” No idea of the utter consternation which attended their flight can be formed till the broken wheels and guns, the scattered clothes and provisions, the deserted tents and the tremendous quantity of relinquished booty of every description, all along the route from Bull’s Run to Alexandria is seen.

I have seen sixty-one pieces of the fine artillery which we took; and every wayside house has been converted into an arsenal, prison and hospital for their deserted equipments, the terror-stricken captives and poor wounded wretches. The moral force and the exaltation of the South, and her holy self-defence, which the news of this victory and unequaled defeat will carry throughout America and into the ears of astonished Europe (which the bragging North has ever attempted to deafen to the truth). Is the most grateful blessing which a kind God could grant to the Southern patriot and soldier.

The health of our company and regiment is only tolerable. We start soon for Leesburg, about twenty-five miles distant.

Mr. Hardy is still with us.

Dr. Divine, who has won the golden opinion of the regiment by his readiness in camp and upon the field, with his instruments and his rifle, is yet the welcome confrere of the company.

We miss the luxury of fruit and vegetables, which our friends at home are enjoying about now; but we, here, have this honorable war.

In haste, your friend,
Ensis.**

(Canton, MS) American Citizen, 8/10/1861

Clipping image

Contributed by John Hennessy

18th Mississippi Infantry Roster 

* Hugh Love and William W. Rucker, both in Co. C per roster above. Co. C was raised in Canton, Madison County, MS.

** An ensis is a saltwater clam.