South Mountain by Rick Reeve

South Mountain by Rick Reeve
South Mountain by Rick Reeve depicting the wounding of General Garland

Monday, September 20, 2010

Fighting Colonels of Fox's Gap- Morning Phase

In the chaotic and hellish conditions that the terrain of South Mountain created for the opposing armies who clashed here, it took the stellar leadership of regimental officers to keep their regiments together and take the fight to the enemy. Whether they were Confederate or Federal, they would go into battle living, fighting, and dying on the same ground that their men would fall on. Here are a couple of these men who held the lines together, Lieutenant Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes and Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Ruffin, Jr.

Lieutenant Colonel Rutherford B. Hayes, commanding 23rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry: On the morning of September 14th, Hayes orders his men onto the National Pike near Middletown, Maryland to support the Alfred Pleasonton's cavalry against the Confederate positions at Turner's Gap. Upon learning that a heavy force of Confederate infantry defending Turner's, Scammon's brigade was moved off the pike onto the Old Sharpsburg Road leading directly towards Fox's Gap and around the Confederate left flank. Hayes' 23rd Ohio was the lead regiment of the brigade and when it came under fire from Confederate artillery posted at Turner's Gap, Scammon ordered Hayes to move up an old farm lane called the Loop Road outflanking and Confederates posted at Fox's Gap. At 9 A.M., lead elements of the 23rd Ohio make contact with skirmishers from the 5th North Carolina. The growing firefight turns into an all-out brawl. Hayes orders his regiment to charge the North Carolinian, successfully pushing the Confederates back. With his men falling all around him, Hayes remains calm and collected keeping up pressure on the reeling Confederate troops. Hayes is wounded rather severely when a minie ball hits him in the left arm just as he prepares to order another charge. He remains in command and hears rumors of a confederate force attempting to flank him so he orders two companies from his left to pull back and turn to the left. Instead of two companies falling back, the entire regiment does so leaving the wounded Hayes between the opposing lines. Hayes calls out, "Hallo, Twenty-Third men, are you going to leave you colonel here for the enemy?!" Almost immediately, several men break ranks running to their wounded commander but Confederate fire forces Hayes to order them back to cover. Eventually, Lieutenant Jackson comes to Hayes and carries him back to friendly lines. Hayes has his wound tended to, but loss of blood causes Hayes to faint. Hayes is carried off the field and Major James Comly assumes command of the regiment. Hayes will spend most of the next two months recuperating and he will be promoted to full colonel in late October 1862. He would later command a brigade and end the war as a brevet Major General. He would become President of the United States following the election of 1876.

nt Colonel Thomas Ruffin, Jr. commanding 13th North Carolina Infantry: As part of Samuel Garland's brigade, the 13th North Carolina under Lt. Colonel Ruffin would be General Garland's left flank during the morning attacks on Fox's Gap. As the battle is raging all along the Confederate line, General Garland rides up behind the 13th North Carolina to help steady the men. Lt. Colonel Ruffin recalls:

"I said to him: 'General, why do you stay here ? you are in great danger. To which he replied: 'I may as well be here as yourself.' I said: 'No, it is my duty to be here with my regiment, but you could better superintend your brigade from a safer position.' Just then I was shot in the hip, and as there was no field-officer then with the regiment, other than myself, I told him of my wound, and that it might disable me, and in that case I wished a field-officer to take my place. He turned and gave some order, which I have forgotten. In a moment I heard a groan, and looked and found him mortally wounded and writhing in pain."

Ruffin, while suffering a rather severe wound to his hip, had just witnessed the death of General Garland. As the Confederate line began to collapse, Ruffin would keep the 13th in position and became hotly engaged with a Union regiment to there front. Suddenly, fire begins pouring down on them from their right, where Ruffin had believed the rest of the brigade was still in position. It was found that the brigade had been routed. To deal with the dual threat, Ruffin orders a charge to his front pushing back those Union troops. He then pulls his men back and faces to the right and orders a charge. This charge is also successful. As Ruffin begins pulling his men back following this second charge, they receive fire from where their left flank once rested Ruffin immediately about faced his regiment and charged in this direction. Finding a handful of Union skirmishers, they were easily dispatched. With these bold moves, Ruffin was able to connect with the 2nd and 4th North Carolina regiments under Colonel Charles C. Tew. Lt. Colonel Ruffin and the 13th would continue fighting as a part of General George B. Anderson's brigade on the 14th before being pulled off that mountain that night and reqrouping with the survivors of Garland's brigade. Lt. Colonel Ruffin would relinquish command of the regiment due to his wound and not take part in the fighting at Sharpsburg. He would survive the war and serve as a justice on the North Carolina Supreme Court.

Friday, September 10, 2010

The slaughter of Drayton's Brigade

Brigadier General Thomas Drayton's Brigade was a part of David R. Jones division at South Mountain and it was ordered to Fox's Gap to reinforce the Confederate position and act as the hinge on which a Confederate counterattack would turn. It was created in 1862 and transferred to Richmond to serve in the Army of Northern Virginia. The 15th South Carolina, 3rd South Carolina Infantry Battalion, Phillip's (GA) Legion Infantry, 50th Georgia, and 51st Georgia were the regiments that made up this brigade. At Fox's Gap, Drayton would order an attack by the 15th South Carolina, the 3rd SC infantry battalion, and Phillips Legion that would be halted and pushed back not long after it began. The 50th and 51st Georgia would be trapped along the Old Sharpsburg Road and taking fire from 3 different directions. The Georgians would be slaughted in the roadbed making this portion of the road South Mountain's Bloody Lane. The South Carolinians would take a position around the Daniel Wise farmhouse and hold as long as possible. The 15th gave way first, but the 3rd's commander refused to let his men retreat and held the line until he was mortally wounded. The Phillip's Legion resisted as much as possible before it too was forced to retreat. Drayton took about 1,300 men with him to the gap, he would leave almost half on the battlefield either killed, wounded, or captured. This is as complete a list as could be created for this brigade.

Brigadier General Thomas F. Drayton (commanding 5 regiments)

Killed 108
Wounded 162
Missing/Captured 176
Total 446

3rd South Carolina Infantry Battalion (Lt. Colonel George S. Strother commanding)

Lieutenant Colonel George S. Strother
Major William G. Rice
Assistant Surgeon Simon Baruch

Company A:
Sergeant James J. Anderson
Private James Calhoun
Private John W. Calhoun, Jr.
Private Elias N. Owens
Private Carson K. Puckett
Sergeant George W. Moored (Captured Also)
Private Capers B. Cannon (Captured also)
Private Rueben S. Clardy
Private Henry H. Cook (Captured also)
Private James H. Finley
Private James D. Fooshe
Private John H. Nichols (Captured also)
Private Joseph M. Rampy (Captured also)
Private John C. Fooshe
Private Elihu W. Griffin
Private George W. Hines
Private John M. Nelson
Private Samuel D. Puckett
Private James Ramsey
Private Joshua M. Townsend

Company B:
Sergeant James W. Davis
Private Samuel L. Austin
Private John W. Crawford
Private Pressley A. Fuller
Private Elihu C. Griffin
Private Abraham Hollingsworth
Private Waddy T. Irby
Private William C. Madden
Private Maxwell Smith
Private William E. Waldrop
2nd Lieutenant Adolphus A. Fuller (Captured also)
Sergeant John C. Fuller (Captured also)
Private Isaac G. Austin
Private Thomas J. Coleman (Captured also)
Private William B. Fuller
Private James A. Jones (Captured also)
Private Andrew J. Snow
Private Francis M. Walker (Captured also)
Sergeant Major George A. Ligon
Private Thomas H. Calhoun
Private William H. Hand
Private Henry L. Hitt
Private James F. Nelson
Private James E. Watson

Company C:
Lieutenant Mastin W. Henderson
Private Joseph J. Avery
Private William N. Cannon
Private A. Tolen Motes
Private Lawson Watkins
Sergeant Thomas P. Cooper (Captured also)
Private James E. Baldwin
Private William Dagnall
Private Ambrose W. Hudgens (Captured also)
Private John S. Pitts
Private John N. Wilson
Corporal John S. Anderson

Company D:
Sergeant William W. Simpson
Private Anderson Babb
Private William D. McKnight
Private Robert T. Shockley
Sergeant Joseph F. Ramage
Private William F. Kelly (Captured also)
Private Thomas J. Loyd
Private James McCluney (captured also)
Private Charles S. Madden (Captured also)
Private Joseph R. Brownlee (Captured also)
Private George R. Burdette
1st Lieutenant Charles E. Kirk
Private Henry L. Curry
Private Decatur Madden
Private Richard L. Owings
Private John L. Speake
Private Robert S. Spears

Company E:
Corporal Dempsey Armstrong
Private Drury B. Riddle
Private W. Drayton Riddle
Private Martin Sumerel
Private William M. Sumeral
2nd Lieutenant Robert L. Henry
Corporal Toliver Sumeral (Captured also)
Private James W. Fowler
Private William W. Grumbles (Captured also)
Private Jasper R. Martin (Captured also)
Private J.S. Morgan (Captured also)
Private William P. Patterson (Captured also)
Private Joseph W. Stewart (Captured also)
Private John W. Bryant
Private John O. Mcneely
Private Mancil Owens
Private James A. Riddle
Private Martin Riddle
Private Willis M. Riddle
Private Robert J. Todd

Company F:
Sergeant P.H. Keough
Private Dederick Senn
Private Thomas M. Smith
2nd Lieutenant Joseph F. Freideberg
Private Alexander H. Fleming (Captured also)
Private Samuel R. North
Private John Rembert (Captured also)
Private Elwood R. Stokes
Captain Daniel B. Miller
Corporal j.B. Mccawley
Private James R. Campbell
Private Patrick Claffey
Private William E.C. Fulmer
Private John Glaze
Private Robert Thrift

Company G:
2nd Lieutenant James P. Shedd
1st Sergeant David R. Martin
Sergeant Labon H. Trapp (Captured also)
Private John W. Boyd (Captured also)
Private George W. Brown
Private Jesse Graddick
Private Robert M. Hagood (Captured also)
Private Washington N. Mason
Private John F. Paul (Captured also)
Private W.H. Robinson (Captured also)
2nd Lieutenant Robert H. Jennings
Sergeant Benjamin F. Watt
Private Hugh W. Aiken
Private George S. Tinkler

15th South Carolina (Colonel William D. DeSaussure commanding)

Aide de Camp Caleb Clark
Private Irwin Emory (Company Unknown)

Company A:
Private Gerald McCammon
Private William H. Roberts
Private Adolphus Stark
Private Ira G. Templeton
Private Charles P. Johnson (Captured also)
Private William E. Parker
Private William Graham

Company B:
Private William P. Huckaby
Private Spenser Prince
Private Franklin Rook
Sergeant Major Charles H. Giles
Private J.P. Barnett
Private W.H. Boram
Private Robert Lamb
Private William H. Williams
Private Jason Bobo

Company C:
1st Lieutenant Samuel I. Lewie
4th Sergeant Henry F. Derrick
Private Henry Satcher
Private Daniel A. Jumper
Private James W. Jumper
Private James Lominack (Captured also)
Private David W. Oswalt (Captured also)
Private Nathaniel Oxner
Private David Taylor
Private James A. Long
Private James H. Long

Company D:
Private Joseph B. Capell
Private Columbus Watts
1st Lieutenant James M. Davis
Private W.H. Capell (Captured also)
Private James L. Gardner
Private Duncan Jordan
Private Manning Scott
Private Francis M. Watts
Chaplain Hugh B. McCallum
Private David G. Fletcher
Private W.W. Watson

Company E:
2nd Lieutenant Joseph B. Hoy
Private Lee Bagley
Private W.J. Barker
Private William M. Blair
Private William J. Cotton
Private Robert L. Martin
Private George W. Williams
Private John J. Barreneau
Private William P. Dickinson
Private W. W. Lyles
Private G. Butler Pearson

Company F:
1st Sergeant James A. Rowland
Private Marion K. Alston
Private Harvey W. Scott
1st Lieutenant John D. Jefferies
Private John C. Edge
Private Seberry Jones
Private Morgan Knox
Private Anthony J. Peeler
Private James Spencer
Private William Fowler
Company G:
Private James Hudson
Private J. Mcdonald
Private Robert F. Cox
Private W. J. McCalister
Private L.C. Altman
Private Elias F. Ard
Private John M. Graham
Private Adam H. June
Private Theodore G. June
Private John J. Mathews
Private John A. Owens
Private Henry A. Poston
Private E. P. Sharp

Company H:
1st Lieutenant William P. Farr
2nd Sergeant James Savage
Private William Adis
Private Columbus Garner
Private A. D. Spears

Company I:
Private William W. Hallman
1st Lieutenant Robert W. Frick
Private David W. Amick
Private James F. Koon (Captured also)
Private Samuel W. Koon
Private George M.Shealy
2nd Lieutenant Wade Keisler
5th Sergeant Henry L. Amick
Corporal Jacob A. Bowers
Private Solomon D.W. Amick
Private John E. Jacobs
Private William H. Koon
Private George M. Monts

Company K:
Private Samuel M. Cook
2nd Sergeant William M. McCaslan
Private John W. Caldwell
Private Samuel S. Mcbride
Private William J. McCaine
Private Cartlege Weeks
Private James b. Robertson

Phillips (GA) Legion Infantry (Lt. Colonel Robert T. Cook commanding)

Major Elihu S. Barclay (Captured also)
Sergeant Major John A. Mathias
Chaplain George G. Smith

Company A
Private William F. Williams
Captain Oliver P. Daniel
Private Joseph B. Walker (Mortally)

Company B:
Private William Cowan
Private Darling P. Glover
Private William Lynch
Private James H. Mitchell
Private Monroe Mitchell
Private Richard P. Stone
Private August Abraham (Captured also)
Private Jacob A. Blanton (Captured also)
Private Warren R. Davis
Private Wiley P. Mitchell (Captured also)
Private Marcellus F. Broyles
Private Lyman A. Chapman
Private Joseph C. England
Private James W. Hawkins
Private Henry L. Russell
Private John W. Samples
Private Francis M. Turner

Company C:
Private William Dobbins
Private Jonas O. Mills
Private Thomas J. Roman
Private Hunter VanDiver
Private John B.F. Red
Private Isaac N. Taylor (Captured also)
Private William W. Ward
Private James Alley
Private John T. Spruell

Company D:
1st Lieutenant Abraham Jones
Private John A. Scott
Private James W. Spratling
Private Ellis E. Williams
Private John T.L. Baldwin
Private David H.P. Barton (Captured also)
Private R.H. Echols
Private Frank B. Luke
Private John Mathias
Private John F. Murphy
Private Samuel M. Turner (Captured also)
Private W. J. Sumner
Private E. Cannon Williams
Private James S. Wood

Company E:
Captain Joseph E. Hamilton
Private James Dempsey
Private Noah White

Company F:
2nd Lieutenant John W. Duggan
Private William Carroll (Captured also)
Private Patrick G. Garey (Captured also)
2nd Corporal Richard Deignan
Private Barnard Conway
Private Richard Furlong
Private Patrick McGovern

Company L:
Captain James M. Johnson (Captured also)
Private Newton J. Ivey (Mortally)
Private Doctor L. Malone (Captured also)
Private William B. Pilgrim
Private Joseph B. Richardson
Private Andrew J. Alexander
Private William J. Esler
Private Clement J. Hunt
Private Ira F. McClellan
Private Solomon H. Sanders
Private Mitchell Walraven
Private Harrison Wilmoth

Company M:
Private William M. Bannister
Private Hiram W. Folds
Private William Bannister
Private Andrew J. Inzer
Private Harvey E. McKee
Private William H. Sauls (Captured also)
Private John W. Sewell
Private John P. Bryan
Private Charles B. Collins
Private John W. Hodges
Private Daniel H. Ponder
Private James E. Smith
Private Joel C. Stancell

Company O:
Private Emsley D. Childers
Private Samuel E. Fields
Private John R. Hawkins
Private Jesse M. Jackson
Private William O. Watson
Private Rufus M. West
Private Andrew J. Davis (Captured also)
Private Charles P. Henderson
Private Robert Moore
Private William G. Taylor
1st Sergeant Alvan H. Summers
Private Thomas C. Austin

50th Georgia (Lieutenant Colonel Francis Kearse commanding)

Company A:
Private Samuel Altman
Private James T. Peacock
Private James R. Thomas
Private James F. Thomas
Private John W. Fletcher
Private Robert G. O’Berry
Private George R. Stom (Missing)
Private Lewis R. Thomas
Private Benjamin Waldron
Private William H. Gooding
Private James T. Tippon

Company B:
Casualties unknown

Company C:
Casualties unknown

Company D:
4th Corporal W. F. McConnell
Private Hezekiah Brown
Private J. Vickers
Private M. Vickers
Private E. Hughes (mortally)
Private William J. Nelson, Sr. (Captured also)
Private Jack Swilley
Private B. Coleman
Private R. P. Hughes

Company E:
Casualties Unknown

Company F:
Casualties Unknown

Company G:
Private William S. Guthery
Private John Roberts
Captain John R. Osteen
1st Sergeant James Douglass
2nd Sergeant Charles W. Curry
4th Corporal William T. Roberts
Private James R. Hargroves
Private Moses Roberts
Private David Bass
Private Manning Cowart
Private Lyman A. Sirmans
Private M.T. Strickland
Private Jasper H. Vining

Company H:
3rd Corporal Jeremiah T. Hancock
4th Sergeant James Brown
Private Jasper Castleberry
Private Joseph Castleberry
Private Harrison G. Hancock
Private James A. Hood
Private David A. Giles

Company I:
Private Richard P. Connell
Private Mathew Handley
Private Elisha R. Herring
Private Samuel Ford
Private Lewis Marshall (Captured also)
Private Randall McMillan
Private A.J. Parrish (Missing also)
Private William Hartley
Private Jams H. Tison

Company K:
Casualties Unknown

51st Georgia (Colonel William M. Slaughter (?) commanding)

Company A:
Private William H. Barnard
Private James L. Ford

Company B:
2nd Lieutenant George W. West
Private William P. West

Company C:
Casualties unknown

Company D:
Private James Glass

Company E:
2nd Lieutenant Louis G. Hainesley
Private Legrand B. Bartlett
Private G.W. Clower
Private David G. Jones
Private Marion A. Bell
Private Francis E. Davis (Captured also)
Private James M. Thompson (Captured also)
Private Jordan Everett
Private Andrew J. Reaves
Private Virgil P. Rimes

Company F:
Private John R. Wainwright
Private W.W. Wimberley
Private Vincent Huff
Private W.J.D. Laing (Captured also)
Sergeant James E. Whitaker
Private George W.Odum
Private Robert A. Baird
Private S.S. Bradley
Private Robert A. Dyson
Private John J. Smith
Private Issace Vinson
Private Robert E. Wright

Company H:
Private Joseph A. Dubose
Private James R. Cox

Company I:
Unknown Casualties

Company K:
Unknown Casualties

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Anniversary plans, September 14, 2010

We are quickly coming up on the Battle of South Mountain's 148th Anniversary on September 14, 2010. Some programs schedules for the day are:

At 9:30 AM, a tour of Turner's, Fox's, and Crampton's gap. This is a van tour out of Antietam National Battlefield leaving from the Visitor Center. A sign-up sheet will be available at the visitor center desk that morning. Only 10 spots are available so sign up as soon as possible!

At 12:30 PM, there will be a guided walking tour of the Fox's Gap battlefield. It will be leaving from the South Mountain Inn's parking lot and walking down the Wood Road in the footsteps of Confederate Soldiers on the fateful day in September. You will see the site where two generals were mortally wounded and in the words of one confederate, " hell is open and all the devils are here".

At 4:00PM, you will experience the Crampton's Gap battlefield in a walking tour lead by Park Service Interpreter Steve Lopez. It will cover the march of the 6th Corps to Burkitsville, the 6th Corps assault up the face of the mountain, and the valient defense of the gap by Confederates under Brigadier General Howell Cobb. It will also cover the aftermath of the battle and Lee's decision to exit Maryland upon hearing that Crampton's Gap had fallen.

So you have choice of events. Hope to see you the 14th!