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Title: Reminiscences of the Guilford Grays, Co. B., 27th N.C. Regiment
Author: Sloan, John A.
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Reminiscences of the Guilford Grays, Co. B., 27th N.C. Regiment" ***

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Transcriber's Note: Minor typographical errors have been corrected
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Organization of the Grays--General Joab Hiatt--Original members--
Election of Officers--Drill--Arms received--First public parade
--"Jake Causey"--Exercises at Edgeworth--May Queen; presentation
of banner.


The Greys celebrate Fourth of July--Visit the Orange Guards at
Hillsboro--Dinner and Ball--Celebrate 22d February at Greenboro--The
"boom" of War--Secession of the Gulf States--Correspondence between
Gov. Ellis and Secretary Holt--Organization of the Confederacy at
Montgomery--We celebrate our own Anniversary--Our Visitors--The
Ladies--Feasting and Dancing--"Call" on Gov. Ellis for troops--Ellis'


Effect of Lincoln's call for troops--Gov. Ellis convenes the
Legislature--The Greys ordered to report at Goldsboro with three
days rations--Ordered to report at Fort Macon--Ladies' Aid Society
--Political excitement--North Carolina Secedes--New recruits--The
Greys sworn in--Arrival at Fort Macon--Latham's Woodpeckers--Assigned
to the 9th Regiment--Assigned finally to the 27th Regiment--Deaths
--New recruits--Routine duty at the Fort--Sports and Past-times.


Election of Regimental Officers--Ordered to New Berne--Burnside
approaches--Fleet arrives on the 12th--The morning of the 14th--The
Battle--The retreat--At Kinston--Changes and promotions--Expiration of
enlistments--Regiment reorganized--Grays reorganized as Company B--
Election of commissioned and non-commissioned officers.


More recruits--Sam'l Park Weir--Leave North Carolina for Virginia--The
Seven Pines--The seven days fight--Malvern Hill.


Marching in the rain--From Drury's Bluff to Petersburg--Riddling the
"Daniel Webster"--Shelling McClellan's camp--Ordered to Richmond--At
Rapidan Station--Discharges and deaths--Regimental Band formed--First
Maryland campaign--Across the Potomac--Two Grays captured--Lost in
the woods--Turn up in Loudon County, Va.--At Harper's Ferry--Surrender
of Harper's Ferry.


Battle of Sharpsburg--The 27th Regiment in the fight--Complimentary
notice by President Davis, Gen. Lee and others--Cook's heroism--
Casualties--Captain Wm. Adams--Recross the Potomac--Rest at Occoquan
--Election of Officers to fill vacancies--Deaths.


McClellan moves Southward--Our march through the Valley--At Upperville
--Return to Paris--Cedar Mountain--Col. Cooke promoted--Major J. A.
Gilmer made Colonel--On to Fredericksburg--Incidents on the march--
Burnside advances--Battle of Fredericksburg--Casualties.


Muster Roll of Grays in December, 1862--Ordered to Richmond--To
Petersburg--Take cars for North Carolina--At Burgaw--The sweet potato
vine--On to Charleston, S.C.--The Alligators of Pocataligo--In camp
at Coosawhatchie--More deaths--Return to North Carolina--On the old
grounds near Kinston.


The affair at Bristow Station.


The affair at Bristow--Gallant conduct of Color-Guard W. C. Story--
Losses of the Grays--Lieut. McKnight killed--Sergeant-Major R. D.
Weatherly mortally wounded--The affair a criminal blunder--President
Davis' comments--The surprise at Kelly's Ford--Meade crosses the
Rapidan--Lee advances--Meade's retreat--In winter quarters near
Orange Court-House.


Company promotions--Our "Fighting Parson" appointed Chaplain--New
recruits--Transfers--Deaths--Virginia Xmas hospitality--Visited by
Rev. J. H. Smith, of Greensboro.


Relative strength of the two armies in May--Their respective positions
--The Wilderness--Private Williams receives a wound--Casualties.


The enemy re-enforced by Burnside's Corps--Heth and Wilcox overpowered
--Critical situation--General Lee charges with the Texas Brigade--Enemy
routed--Longstreet wounded--Night march--Moving towards Spottsylvania
Court-House--Fortifying at Spottsylvania.


Barlow's attack upon our left--The little brick church--The enemy's
advance on Ewell at the salient--Gen. Lee exposes himself--Terrific
conflict--Heth's Division moved to the left--The enemy repulsed--Rest
for a few days--Grant's desperate attack on the 18th.


Grant abandons his plans--Moves towards Bowling Greene--On the road to
Hanover Junction--Weary marches--A. "Georgy" soldier's costume--His
idea of Music and Medicine--Anecdote of General Grant--Grant changes
his tactics--Engagement at Attlee's Station--Brush at Tolopotomy
Creek--Skirmish at Pole--Green Church--Lieut. Campbell mortally


The army at Cold Harbor--Battle at Pharr's farm--Casualties--At Cold
Harbor--Lieut. Frank Hanner's death.


Marching towards the James--Our Brigade in the Chickahominy Swamps--
Cavalry skirmish at Hawe's Shops--Sergeant W. M. Paisley mortally
wounded--Ordered to support the cavalry on the 21st.--Fighting under
difficulties--On the lines near Petersburg.


The Crater--Warren's corps seize the Weldon Railroad--The 27th at
Ream's Station--The Grays lose heavily--Warren holds the railroad.


In the trenches before Petersburg--Casualties--The Federals cross
to the north side of the James--Skirmish near Battery No. 45--At
Hatcher's Run--At Burgess' Mill--In line of battle--Building winter
quarters--On a raid at Bellfield--The enemy in full flight--Grant
creeping up on our lines.


In winter quarters at Hatcher's Run--A midnight tramp--An affair at
Hare's Hill--Our picket line in the hands of the enemy--Recaptured--
At Fort Euliss--Our lines broken--The retreat--Fight at Sutherland's
Tavern--Sorely pressed--Reach Deep Creek--Camp near Goode's Bridge
--We celebrate--Reorganization of the regiment--A halt at Amelia
Court-House--Wagon trains attacked and burned--Every man for
himself--Reach Appomattox--In line of battle--Awaiting orders.


To the reader--The morning of the 9th--Preparations to attack--A flag
of truce--Negotiations between Generals Grant and Lee--The surrender
--The Guilford Grays present at Appomattox--Comrades--Closing scene


The names of all who were at any time on our rolls, and a sketch of
the military record of each member--Battles fought.


I hope no one will think that I aspire to the severe dignity of a
historian in these rambling reminiscences which are to follow. I am
well content to take an humbler part. With the political questions of
the past, with the conduct of politicians and statesmen, with the
skill of military leaders, with the criticism of campaigns, with the
causes and effects of the civil war, I have here no concern, much less
with the personal interests and rivalries of individuals. But for
all this, the writer hopes that these contributions will not be
unfavorably received by those who were actors in the scenes which are
here recalled. He hopes that what is lacking of the general history of
those eventful times will be compensated for in the details touching
the history of the Guilford Grays themselves.

From the period when our company was called into the field by Gov.
Ellis, down to the surrender at Appomattox, the writer kept a record of
those events which came under his own observation, and which he thought
might prove useful and interesting in future time. "_Forsan et haec
olim meminisse juvabit._"

These records up to the capture of Newberne were lost, and for this
period of our history I have relied principally upon my memory. From
the battle of Newberne to the final catastrophe, I have accurate notes
of the most important events and incidents in which the Grays
participated and shared.

To the memory of my comrades who fell, and as a testimonial to those
who survive, these reminiscences are dedicated. To the derelict in
duty, if such there may have been, the writer will have naught to say.
Let their names stand forever in the shadows of oblivion.




In the year eighteen hundred and sixty the military spirit was rife in
the South. The clouds were threatening. No one knew what a day would
bring forth. The organization, the equipment and drill of volunteer
companies was, accordingly, the order of the times. The first assembly
to perfect the organization of the Guilford Grays was held in the
court-house in Greensboro, N.C., on the evening of the 9th of
January, 1860. The meeting was presided over by General Joab
Hiatt--now deceased--a favorite and friend of the young men. Gen.
Hiatt won his military laurels as commander of the militia, in the
piping times of peace. Whoever has seen him arrayed in the gorgeous
uniform of a militia brigadier on the field of the general muster
cannot fail to recall his commanding presence. He was the proper man
to fill the chair at our first meeting. James W. Albright (who is
still in the flesh) acted as secretary. The usual committees were
appointed. A constitution and by-laws were drafted and adopted. The
constitution provided for a volunteer company of infantry, to be known
as the Guilford Grays. Each member was required to sign the
constitution and by-laws. The following is a complete list of the
signers, in the order of their signatures:

John A. Sloan, William P. Wilson, Thomas J. Sloan, Jos. M. Morehead,
John Sloan, David Gundling, Henry C. Gorrel, William U. Steiner, Otto
Huber, James R. Pearce, Jas. T. Morehead, Jr., P. B. Taylor, Chas. A.
Campbell, J. H. Tarpley, William Adams, James W. Albright, Maben Lamb,
James Thomas, Edward G. Sterling, Jos. H. Fetzer, William P. Moring,
Wilbur F. Owen, George H. Gregory, David N. Kirkpatrick, Andrew D.
Lindsay, John Donnell, Benjamin G. Graham, W. W. Causey, William L.
Bryan, Chas. E. Porter, John D. Smith, James R. Cole, John H.
McKnight, Jed. H. Lindsay, Jr., W. C. Bourne, John A. Gilmer, Jr.,
Samuel B. Jordan.

The foregoing persons signed the constitution and by-laws on the 9th
of January, 1860, when the company was first organized, and are
entitled to the honor of being the "original panel."

The company was organized by the election of the following
commissioned and non-commissioned officers, viz.:

John Sloan, Captain; William Adams, 1st Lieutenant; James T. Morehead,
2d Lieutenant; John A. Pritchett, 3d Lieutenant; Henry C. Gorrell,
Ensign (with rank of Lieutenant); W. C. Bourne, Orderly Sergeant;
William P. Wilson, 2d Sergeant; Samuel B. Jordan, 3d Sergeant; Geo. W.
Howlett, 4th Sergeant; Thos. J. Sloan, Corporal; Benjamin G. Graham,
2d Corporal; George H. Gregory, 3d Corporal; Silas C. Dodson, 4th

The following musicians were selected from the colored troops:

Jake Mebane, fifer; Bob Hargrove, kettle-drummer; Cæsar Lindsay,

The anniversary of the battle of Guilford Court-House is an honored
day among the people of old Guilford. It was the turning point in the
future of Lord Cornwallis. When the Earl of Chatham heard the defeat
announced in the House of Parliament, he exclaimed: "One more such
victory would ruin the British." This battle was fought by General
Greene on the 15th of March, 1781. On this anniversary, the 15th of
March, 1860, our officers received their commissions from Governor
Ellis. This is the date of our formal organization.

Friday night of each week was set apart for the purpose of drill and
improvement. Our drill-room was in the second story of Tate's old
cotton factory, where we were instructed in the various manoeuvers
and evolutions, as then laid down in Scott's tactics.

Early in April we received our arms, consisting of fifty stand of old
flint-and-steel, smooth-bore muskets, a species of ordnance very
effective at the breech. They were supposed to have descended from
1776, and to have been wrested by order of the Governor from the worms
and rust of the Arsenal at Fayettsville. By the first of May we had
received our handsome gray uniforms from Philadelphia. These uniforms,
which we so gaily donned and proudly wore, consisted of a frock coat,
single-breasted, with two rows of State buttons, pants to match, with
black stripe, waist belt of black leather, cross belt of white
webbing, gray cap with pompon.

Our first public parade was a day long to be remembered. It occurred
on the 5th day of May, 1860. The occasion was the coronation of a May
queen in the grove at Edgeworth Female Seminary. The Grays were
invited by the ladies to lend their presence at the celebration, and
it was whispered that we were to be the recipients of a banner.

It will be readily imagined that we were transported with the
anticipation of so joyous a day. We did our best to make ourselves
perfect in the drill and manual--for would not all eyes be upon us?
The day came at last, and at 10 a.m. we assembled in front of the
court-house. The roll was called and no absentees noted. The uniforms
were immaculate, our officers wore the beautiful swords presented to
them by the fair ladies of Greensboro Female College, the musket
barrels and bayonets flashed and gleamed in the glorious May sunshine,
and with high heads in jaunty caps, and with the proud military step,
as we supposed it ought to be, we marched now in single file, and now
in platoons, down the street towards the Edgeworth grounds, keeping
time to the music of "Old Jake," whose "spirit-stirring fife" never
sounded shriller, and whose _rainbow-arched_ legs never bore him with
such grandeur.

When we arrived at our destination, we found the beautiful green
grounds, which were tastefully decorated, already filled with happy
spectators. The young ladies, whose guests we were to be, were formed
in procession, and were awaiting the arrival of the Queen and her
suite. The appearance of this distinguished cortege on the scene was
the signal for the procession to move.

The following was the order of procession:

First. Fourteen of her maids of honor.

Second. Ten Floras, with baskets of flowers, which they scattered in
the pathway.

Third. Sceptre and crown-bearer.

Fourth. The Queen, with Lady Hope and the Archbishop on either side.

Fifth. Two maids of honor.

Sixth. Ten pages.

Seventh. The Military (Grays).

As the Queen advanced to the throne, erected in the centre of the
grove, the young ladies greeted her with the salutation:

    "You are the fairest, and of beauty rarest,
    And you our Queen shall be."

Lady Hope (Miss Mary Arendell) addressed the Queen:

    "O, maiden fair, with light brown hair!"

The Archbishop (Miss Hennie Erwin) then proceeded to the crowning
ceremony, and Miss Mary Morehead was crowned Queen of May.

After these pleasant and ever-to-be-remembered ceremonies, the Queen
(Miss Mamie) in the name of the ladies of the seminary, presented to
the Grays a handsome silk flag, in the following happy speech:

    "In the name of my subjects, the fair donors of Edgeworth, I
    present this banner to the Guilford Grays. Feign would we have
    it a "banner of peace," and have inscribed upon its graceful
    folds "peace on earth and good-will to man;" for our womanly
    natures shrink from the horrors of war and bloodshed. But we
    have placed upon it the "oak," fit emblem of the firm heroic
    spirits over which it is to float. Strength, energy, and decision
    mark the character of the sons of Guilford, whuse noble sires
    have taught their sons to know but one fear--the fear of doing
    wrong." * * * * * *

Cadet R. O. Sterling, of the N.C. Military Institute, received the
banner at the hands of the Queen, and, advancing, placed it in the
hands of Ensign H. C. Gorrell, who accepted the trust as follows:

    "Most noble Queen, on the part of the Guilford Grays I accept this
    beautiful banner, for which I tender the thanks of those whom I
    represent. Your majesty calls to remembrance the days of 'Auld
    Lang Syne,' when the banners of our country proudly and
    triumphantly waved over our own battle-field, and when our
    fathers, on the soil of old Guilford, 'struck for their altars and
    their fires.' Here, indeed, was fought the great battle of the
    South; here was decided the great struggle of the Revolution; here
    was achieved the great victory of American over British
    generalship; here was evidenced the great military talent and
    skill of Nathaniel Greene, the blacksmith boy, whose immortal name
    our town bears.

    "If any earthly pride be justifiable, are not the sons of Guilford
    entitled to entertain it? If any spot on earth be appropriate
    for the presentation of a "banner of peace," where will you find
    it, if it be not here, five miles from the battle-field of
    Martinsville; here at Guilford Court-House in the boro of Nathaniel
    Greene; here in the classic grounds of old Edgeworth, surrounded
    with beauty and intelligence; in the presence of our wives, our
    sisters, and our sweethearts. And who could more appropriately
    present this banner than your majesty and her fair subjects? You
    are the daughter of a Revolutionary mother to whom we would render
    all the honor due--

        'No braver dames had Sparta,
        No nobler matrons Rome.
        Then let us laud and honor them,
        E'en in their own green homes.'

    "They have passed from the stage of earthly action, and while we
    pay to their memories the grateful tribute of a sigh, we would
    again express our thanks to their daughters for this beautiful
    banner, and as a token of our gratitude, we, the Guilford Grays,
    do here beneath its graceful folds pledge our lives, our fortunes,
    and our sacred honor, and swear for them to live, them to love,
    and, if need be, for them to die.

    "Noble Queen, we render to you, and through you to your subjects,
    our hearty, sincere, and lasting thanks for this entertainment;
    and to the rulers, in your vast domain, for the privilege of
    trespassing upon their provinces which lie under their immediate

    "In time of war, or in time of peace, in prosperity or adversity,
    we would have you ever remember the Guilford Grays--for be assured
    your memories will ever be cherished by them."

This beautiful banner was designed by Dr. D. P. Weir and executed in
Philadelphia--the size is 6 feet by 5, being made of heavy blue silk.
On the one side is a painting in oils, representing the coat-of-arms
of North Carolina encircled by a heavy wreath of oak leaves and
acorns. Above is a spread eagle with scroll containing the motto, "E
Pluribus Unum," a similar scroll below with words, "Greensboro, North
Carolina." The other side, similar in design, except within the wreath
the words, "Presented by the Ladies of Edgeworth Female Seminary, May
5th, 1860;" on the scroll above, "Guilford Grays," and on scroll
below, "Organized March 5th, 1860," all edged with heavy yellow silk
fringe, cord and tassel blue and gold, the staff of ebony, surmounted
with a heavily plated battle axe. This flag is still preserved and in
the writer's possession.


More than a year in advance of the National Paper, attributed to Mr.
Jefferson, the people of Mecklenburg County declared themselves a free
people and took the lead in throwing off the British yoke. On the 4th
day of July, 1776, the National Declaration, adopting (?) some of the
language of the Mecklenburg convention, "rang out" the glad tidings
"that these United Colonies are, and, of right, ought to be, _free_ and
_independent_ States."

To celebrate the "glorious fourth," the good people of Alamance County
unveiled and dedicated a monument at Alamance church to the memory of
Colonel Arthur Forbis, a gallant officer of the North Carolina troops,
who fell mortally wounded at the battle of Guilford, March 25th, 1781.
By invitation of the committee--Rev. C. H. Wiley and Dr. D. P.
Weir--the Grays participated. Invitations of this kind were never
declined. The day was intensely hot, and the distance from Greensboro
being too far for a march in those days, wagons were furnished for our
transportation. The exercises of the occasion were opened with prayer
by Rev. E. W. Caruthers. He was followed by Gov. John M. Morehead,
who, taking the sword which the brave Forbis had carried while he was
an officer, with it lifted the veil from the monument. The Governor's
remarks were just such as those who knew him would have expected of
him. The exercises were closed by Rev. Samuel Paisley, that venerable
man of God. The Grays, after firing a salute and performing such
duties as were required, returned to Greensboro, having spent an
interesting "fourth."

On the 1st of October, in the same year, we visited by invitation the
Orange Guards, a military organization at Hillsboro, N.C. The
occasion was their fifth anniversary. We took the morning train to
Hillsboro, and in a few hours reached our destination. We found the
Guards at the depot awaiting our arrival. Lieutenant John W. Graham,
on behalf of the Guards, received us with a most cordial welcome.
Lieutenant James T. Morehead, Jr., responded upon the part of the
Grays. We were then escorted to quarters, which were prepared for us,
at the Orange Hotel, where we enjoyed the delicacies, luxuries, and
liquids so bountifully "set out" at this famed hostelry, then presided
over by the genius of Messrs. Hedgpeth and Stroud. In the afternoon we
were escorted to the Hillsboro Military Institute, and gave the young
gentlemen there an opportunity of observing our _superior_ skill, both
in the manual and the evolutions. At night the chivalry and beauty of
"ye ancient borough" assembled in the Odd Fellows' hall to do us honor
at a ball,

    "And then the viols played their best;
      Lamps above and laughs below.
    Love me sounded like a jest,
      Fit for yes, or fit for no."

As Aurora began to paint the East in rosy colors of the dawn, we
boarded the train for home. Some with aching heads, some with aching

The Orange Guards were closely and intimately associated with us
during the entire four years of the war. We entered the service about
the same time, at the same place, and served in the same regiment. Our
friendships were there renewed, and many, so many, are the memories
sweet and sad, which we mutually share. Our marches, our wants, our
abundance, our sorrows, and our rejoicings--each and all, they were
common to us both. In love and allegiance to our native State we
marched forth to take our places among her gallant sons, be it for
weal or woe; hand-in-hand together till Appomattox Court-House, we
struggled and endured. There like a vesture no longer for use, we
folded and laid away our tattered and battle-stained banner, to be
kept forever sacred, in the sepulchre of a lost cause.

My diary intimates no occasion for even a "skirmish" until the 22d of
February, 1861, when we again donned the gray to honor the memory of
"George W." and his little hatchet. We were entertained during the day
with an address at the court-house by Jas. A. Long, Esq., on the
all-absorbing _question_ of the times.

The Congress of the United States had assembled as usual in December,
and was at this time in session. The clouds surcharged with sectional
hate and political fanaticism were now lowering over us, and the
distant mutterings of that storm which had been heard so long, and
against which the wise and patriotic had given solemn warning,
foreboded evil times. South Carolina had already, on the 20th of
December, adopted her ordinance of secession; Mississippi on the 9th
of January; Florida followed on the 10th, Alabama on the 11th, Georgia
on the 18th, Louisiana on the 26th, and Texas on the 1st of February.

Events now crowded upon each other with the rapidity of a drama. On the
10th of January, 1861, Governor Ellis telegraphed Hon. Warren Winslow
of North Carolina, at Washington, to call on General Winfield Scott and
_demand_ of him to know if he had been instructed to garrison the forts
of North Carolina. The Governor stated that he was informed that it was
the purpose of the Administration to coerce the seceded States, and
that troops were already on their way to garrison the Southern forts.
On the 12th, Governor Ellis addressed the following letter to President

    "Your Excellency will pardon me for asking whether the United
    States forts in this State will be garrisoned with Federal troops
    during your administration. Should I receive assurances that no
    troops will be sent to this State prior to the 4th of March next,
    then all will be peace and quiet here, and the property of the
    United States will be protected as heretofore. If, however, I am
    unable to get such assurances, I will not undertake to answer for
    the consequences. Believing your Excellency to be desirous of
    preserving the peace, I have deemed it my duty to yourself, as
    well as to the people of North Carolina, to make the foregoing
    inquiry, and to acquaint you with the state of the public mind

On the 15th day of January, J. Holt, Secretary of War (_ad interim_),
in behalf of the President, replied as follows:

    "It is not his (Buchanan's) purpose to garrison the forts to which
    you refer, because he considers them entirely safe under the
    shelter of that _law-abiding_ sentiment for which the people of
    North Carolina have ever been distinguished."

The congress of delegates from the seceded States convened at
Montgomery, Alabama, on the 4th of February, 1861, and on the 9th,
Jefferson Davis, of Mississippi, was chosen by this body for
President, and Alexander H. Stephens, of Georgia, for Vice President
of the Confederate States. On the 18th of February Mr. Davis was
inaugurated and the Provisional Government was instituted.

On the 4th of March, "at the other end of the avenue," Abraham
Lincoln, nominated by a sectional convention, elected by a sectional
vote, and that the vote of a minority of the people, was inducted into

Eager now were the inquiries as to the probabilities of a war between
the sections. Everything was wrapped in the greatest uncertainty.
North Carolina still adhered to the Union.

The anniversary of our company occurring on the 15th of March, which
was now near at hand, we determined to celebrate the occasion. We
accordingly issued invitations to the Rowan Rifles, of Salisbury, the
Blues and Grays, of Danville, Va., and the Orange Guards, of
Hillsboro, to be present with us. The Danville Grays, commanded by
Capt. Claiburne, arrived on the evening of the 14th, the Rowan Rifles,
Capt. McNeely, accompanied by Prof. Neave's brass band, greeted us on
the morning of the 15th; the Orange Guards, Capt. Pride Jones, brought
up the rear a few hours afterwards. Our visiting companies were
welcomed, and the hospitalities of the city extended in an appropriate
address by our then worthy Mayor, A. P. Eckel, Esq. Special addresses
of welcome were made to the Danville companies by John A. Gilmer, Jr.;
to the Rowan Rifles, by Lieut. James T. Morehead, Jr.; and to the
Orange Guards, by Lieut. Wm. Adams. Having formed a battalion, under
the command of Col. R. E. Withers, who had accompanied the Danville
companies, we paraded the streets some hours. We repaired, by
invitation of Prof. Sterling, to the Edgeworth grounds, where we found
a bountiful lunch ready for us, prepared by the hospitable hostess.
From Edgeworth we marched to the college, and passed in review before
the bright eyes and smiling faces of the assembled beauty of that
institution. At night our guests were entertained at a sumptuous
collation in Yates' Hall, prepared by the ladies of our city. After we
had refreshed the inner man, and regaled ourselves at the groaning
tables, we moved, by way of a temporary bridge, constructed from the
third-story window of the Yates building to the large hall in the
Garrett building adjacent. Here, under the soul-stirring music
discoursed by the Salisbury band, the feet began to twinkle and sound
in quadrille, and continued until

    "The jagged, brazen arrows fell
    Athwart the feathers of the night."

On the next day all departed for their homes. Ah! who surmised so soon
to leave them again, and on so different a mission!

We now pass from these holiday reflections, which are germane only to
the introduction of these reminiscences, and arrive at the period when
our _law-abiding_ old State called her sons to arms; when we pledged
our _most_ sacred honor in the cause of freedom, and willingly made the

    "All these were men, who knew to count,
    Front-faced, the cost of honor--
    Nor did shrink from its full payment."

On Friday, the 12th day of April, 1861, General G. T. Beauregard, then
in command of the provisional forces of the Confederate States at
Charleston, S.C., opened fire upon Fort Sumter. Then, on the 15th,
came the proclamation of Mr. Lincoln, calling for 75,000 troops. As
this levy could only mean war, Virginia determined to cast her lot
with the Confederate States, and, accordingly, on the 17th added
herself to their number.

This proclamation was the out-burst of the storm, and with lightning
speed the current of events rushed on to the desolating war so soon to

On the 16th of April, Governor Ellis received from Mr. Cameron,
Secretary of War, the following telegram, viz.:

    WASHINGTON, D.C., _April 15th, 1861_.

    TO J. W. ELLIS:

    Call made on you by to-night's mail for two regiments of military
    for immediate service.

    _Secretary of War_.

_Governor_ Ellis immediately telegraphed back the following reply:

    RALEIGH, N.C., _April 15th, 1861_.

    _Secretary of War_.

    SIR: Your dispatch is received, and if genuine, which its
    extraordinary character leads me to doubt, I have to say in reply,
    that I regard that levy of troops made by the administration for
    the purpose of subjugating the States of the South as in violation
    of the Constitution, and as a gross usurpation of power. I can be
    no party to this wicked violation of the laws of the country, and
    to this war upon the liberties of a free people. _You can get no
    troops from North Carolina._ I will reply more in detail when I
    receive your "call."

    _Governor of North Carolina_.

It is to be remarked that as early as the 19th of March, Senator Thos.
L. Clingman had dispatched Gov. Ellis, to wit:

    "It is believed that the North Carolina forts will immediately be
    garrisoned by Lincoln."


Mr. Lincoln's "call" for troops excited indignation and alarm
throughout the South; and "law-abiding" North Carolina had now to
decide what it was her duty to do.

On the 17th of April, Gov. Ellis issued a proclamation convening the
General Assembly to meet in special session on the first day of May.

On the evening of the day of the issuing of the proclamation, Capt.
John Sloan, commanding the Grays, received orders from Gov. Ellis, "to
report with his company, with three days' rations, at Goldsboro, N.C."
This order was countermanded on the following morning, "to report to
Col. C. C. Tew, commanding the garrison at Fort Macon."

In obedience to this order the Guilford Grays, on Friday night, April
18th, 1861, left Greensboro for Fort Macon. Thus the Rubicon was
crossed; thus did North Carolina find herself in armed conflict with
the United States; and thus were the Guilford Grays precipitated in
the contest in which they were to suffer and endure for four long

Our departure was the occasion of different and conflicting emotions.
The Grays, young, ardent, and full of enthusiasm, were the most
light-hearted and happy of all, and marched with as little thought of
coming trouble, as if on the way to some festive entertainment. Not so
with mothers, sisters, and sweethearts--for except our captain, none of
as were married--nature seemed to have granted to these a vision of the
future, which was denied to us, and while they cheered us on with
encouraging words, there was manifest in their expression a deep but
silent under-current of sad forebodings, not unaccompanied with tears.
We marched to the depot with drums beating, and with _that_ flag
flying, which but twelve months before the girls had given us as a
"banner of peace."

Previous to our departure on Friday night the company assembled in the
court-house, when Lieut. John A. Pritchett and Orderly Sergeant W. H.
Bourne, resigned their offices. John A. Gilmer, Jr., was elected to
fill the vacancy of lieutenant, and Wm. P. Wilson that of orderly

The following is the roll of members who left for Fort Macon on the
night mentioned:

John Sloan, Captain; William Adams, 1st Lieutenant; James T. Morehead,
Jr., 2d Lieutenant; John A. Gilmer, Jr., 3d Lieutenant; John E. Logan,
M. D., Surgeon; Henry C. Gorrell, Ensign; William P. Wilson, Orderly
Sergeant; John A. Sloan, 2d Sergeant; Geo. W. Howlett, 3d Sergeant;
Samuel B. Jordan, 4th Sergeant; Thos. J. Sloan, Corporal; Benjamin G.
Graham, 2d Corporal; Edward M. Crowson, 3d Corporal; J. Harper
Lindsay, Jr., 4th Corporal. Privates: Hardy Ayres, James Ayers,
William L. Bryan, Peter M. Brown, John D. Collins, Allison C. Cheely,
Chas. A. Campbell, H. Rufus Forbis, Rufus B. Gibson, Walter Green,
Frank A. Hanner, Alfred W. Klutts, Andrew D. Lindsay, John H.
McKnight, J. W. McDowell, James R. Pearce, Chas. E. Porter, William U.
Steiner, Edw. G. Sterling, John E. Wharton, Richard B. Worrell, Robert
D. Weatherly, Samuel P. Weir, A. Lafayette Orrell, James Gray, Samuel
Robinson, J. Frank Erwin, Joseph E. Brown, Edward Switz, Thos. D.
Brooks, W. G. Duvall.

A few days after our departure, the ladies of Greensboro organized a
committee, consisting of Mrs. D. P. Weir, Mrs. R. G. Sterling, Mrs. T.
M. Jones, Mrs. A. P. Eckel, and Mrs. J. A. Gilmer, to see that we were
supplied with provisions and such clothing as was needful, and nobly
did these blessed ladies--three of whom have since "crossed the River;
resting under the shade on the other side"--perform their work of
love. We were constantly receiving boxes, containing, not only every
comfort, but luxuries and dainties, from this committee, in addition
to those sent us by the dear ones in our private homes.

In the meanwhile our newspapers and politicians were urging immediate
action upon the part of our State. The following quotation from _The
Patriot_ of May 2d, 1861, will serve to show the state of public
opinion at that time. _The Patriot_ says:

    "Our streets are filled with excited crowds, and addresses were
    made during the day by Governor Morehead, Hons. R. C. Puryear,
    John A. Gilmer, Sr., Rob't. P. Dick, and Thomas Settle. These
    speeches all breathed the spirit of resistance to tyrants, and our
    people were told that the time had come for North Carolina to make
    common cause with her brethren of the South in driving back the
    abolition horde."

On the 20th day of May, 1861 (being the 86th anniversary of the
Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence), North Carolina severed her
relations with the Federal Union, and made "common cause with her
brethren of the South."

During the months of May and June our company received many volunteer
recruits, all, with one or two exceptions, coming from Guilford
County. Below are their names and the dates of their enlistment:

Edward B. Higgins, J. T. Edwards, H. M. Boon, Richard G. Boling, L. G.
Hunt. John W. Nelson, Jas. A. Orrell, Chas. W. Westbrooks, Jos. W.
Rankin, C. W. Stratford, William M. Summers and Jas. S. Scott, on the
first of May. A. F. Coble, R. S. Coble, Robert L. Donnell, Mike
Gretter, G. D. Hines, Robert A. Hampton, Isaac F. Lane, Walter D.
McAdoo, on the 4th, Wash. D. Archer, on the 9th of June. James M.
Hardin, T. M. Woodburn, on the 10th. Wilbur F. Owen, Hal Puryear,
Rob't. B. McLean, Edward B. Lindsay, S. A. Hunter, W. I. L. Hunt, W.
C. Clapp, Israel N. Clapp, Jas. C. Davis, David H. Edwards, W. C.
Story, Andy L. Stanley, Rob't. B. Tate, on the 11th, Jas. M. Marsh on
the 13th, John W. McNairy, H. Smiley Forbis, William Dennis, John W.
Reid on the 15th, Thos. J. Rhodes on the 25th, and on the 19th of
July, Jas. L. Wilson.

A large majority of the members of the Grays were sworn in, some two
months after our arrival at the Fort, as twelve months State troops.
Some few at this time returned to their homes, and others enlisted in
different commands. Ensign H. C. Gorrell returned to Greensboro,
raised a company for active service, was elected its captain, and
assigned to the 2d North Carolina regiment. He was killed June 21st,
1862, while gallantly leading a charge against one of the enemy's
strongholds on the Chickahominy. Our surgeon, Dr. John E. Logan,
remained with us about four months as surgeon of the post. He was then
assigned to the 4th North Carolina Regiment in active service, and,
later during the war, to the 14th North Carolina, where he served as
surgeon until the close of the war.

The war fever had now reached its height, and companies were forming
throughout the State, and rapidly hastening to Virginia, which was
soon to become the theatre of active operations. In the meanwhile, the
seat of government was transferred from Montgomery, Alabama, to
Richmond, Va., where, on the 20th day of July, 1861, the first
Confederate Congress convened.

On our arrival at Fort Macon, on the night of the 20th of April, we
found our old friends, the Orange Guards, also the Goldsboro Rifles
and the Wilson Light Infantry, in quiet possession of the citadel. The
United States garrison, consisting of Sergeant Alexander, supported by
one six-pounder mounted on the inner parapet to herald the rising of
the sun, and the going down of the same, had surrendered on the 11th,
without bloodshed, to Capt. Pender, of Beaufort. The sergeant was
paroled, and allowed to leave the fort with his flag and side-arms.
The ordnance was retained. On the next morning we saw floating from
the flagstaff over the fort the Pine Tree flag, with the rattlesnake
coiled around the base. This was the State flag. About ten days
afterwards for some cause, and by what authority is not known, the
State flag was pulled down and a Confederate flag run up in its place.
North Carolina had not yet seceded, and this was looked upon as an
unwarrantable assumption of command, and some of our company left for
home, but returned when the State afterwards seceded.

A few weeks afterwards our garrison was reinforced by Capt. Latham's
(artillery) "Woodpeckers," from Craven. This command received its very
appropriate nickname from the fact that, when they entered the fort,
they wore very tight-fitting scarlet caps. (This company, with a
detail from the 27th N.C. Regiment, did splendid service at the
battle of Newberne.)

Some time in June we were assigned to the 9th North Carolina regiment;
but, for some reason unknown to us, we were taken from this regiment,
and another company substituted. On the 22d we were placed, with five
other companies, in a battalion, commanded by Col. Geo. B. Singletary.
Our position was retained in this battalion until some time in
September, when we were assigned to the 27th North Carolina regiment,
which was organized with Col. Singletary as Colonel, Capt. John Sloan
(of the Grays) Lieut.-Colonel, and Lieut. Thomas C. Singletary as
Major. Seven companies of this regiment were then in camp near
Newberne, and the remaining three companies--one of which was the
Grays, and designated in the regiment as Company "B"--were on detached
service at Fort Macon, where we remained until the 28th of February,

Owing to the promotion of Capt. Sloan to the Lieut.-Colonelcy of the
regiment, Lieut. William Adams was elected captain of the Grays and
Sergeant William P. Wilson elected 3d Lieutenant.

Private William Cook died in Greensboro of typhoid fever, on the 5th
of June, having been a member of the company about one month.

On the 31st of July, private George J. Sloan, after severe illness,
died at the fort.

On the 1st of August the following new members enlisted, viz.: Jno. T.
Sockwell, R. D. Brown, Frank G. Chilcutt, George W. Lemons, James H.
Gant, Richard Smith, and L. L. Prather.

Our special employment at the Fort, outside of the military routine,
and to relieve its tedium, was "totin" sand bags. Thad Coleman was our
chief of ordnance, and as the duties of this office were important and
imperative, Sergeant Howlett and Private A. D. Lindsay were detailed
as assistants or aids-de-camp. While waiting the arrival of our
artillery to equip the fort, Capt. Guion, our civil engineer,
instructed our chief of ordnance and his aids to erect embrasures and
traverses, of sand bags, on the parapets. The bags were first tarred,
then filled with sand and carried by the men to the parapets. This
interesting recreation was indulged in during the dog-days of the
hottest August that our boys ever experienced. At the early dawn of
every morning, upon the parapet, with a pair of opera glasses,
intensely scanning the horizon of the deep, deep blue sea, might have
been observed the inclined form of Capt. Guion, on the look-out for a
United States man-of-war. But whether a man-of-war or the
"idly-flapping" sail of some crab hunter hove in sight, the order for
more sand bags was placed on file at the ordnance department. We built
traverses day after day. We pulled them down and built them up again,
exactly as they were before. At length the raw material, of bag,
failed, and Sergeant-aid-de-camp Howlett was dispatched under sealed
orders to Greensboro on some mysterious errand. We employed our
leisure time which we now enjoyed (thanks to the bag failure and the
mysterious errand of Sergeant Howlett), in citing delinquents to
appear before a court-martial of High Privates, which we now
organized. Among the culprits were Sergeant Howlett and private
Summers. It had transpired that Sergeant Howlett's mysterious errand
had been to fill a requisition, made by Capt. Guion and approved by
Lieut. Coleman, chief of ordnance, for a Grover and Baker sewing
machine (extra size) to be employed in the furtherance of the tarred
sand-bag business. The prisoner was tried, convicted, and sentenced to
change his sleeping quarters to No. 14-1/2. This casemate was occupied
by Harper Lindsay, Ed. Higgins, Tom. Sloan, Jim. Pearce, and McDowell.
Any man was entitled to all the sleep he could get in these quarters.

Private Summers, who had obtained leave to visit home on what he
represented as _urgent_ business, was also arraigned in due form. The
charges and specifications amounted substantially to this, that he went
home to see his sweetheart. He was permitted by the Court to defend
with counsel. "Long" Coble appeared for him, and in his eloquent appeal
for mercy--in which his legs and arms played the principal part of the
argument--he compared the prisoner to a little ship, which had sailed
past her proper anchorage at home and cast her lines at a neighbor's
house. The evidence being circumstantial he was acquitted, but was ever
known afterwards as "Little Ship" Summers. He served faithfully during
the entire war; has anchored _properly_ since, and the little "crafts"
around his happy home indicate that he has laid the keels for a navy.

Running the "blockade" to Beaufort was another favorite amusement. The
popular and sable boatman for this "secret service" was Cæsar Manson.
Cæsar's knowledge of the waters of the sound was full and accurate,
and his pilotage around the "pint o' marsh" was unerring. Privates
McDowell, Jim Pearce, and Ed Higgins employed Cæsar a dark, rainy night
on one of these secret expeditions to Beaufort. Owing to the fog on the
sound and the _fog_ in the boat, the return of the party was delayed
till late in the night. The faithful sentinel, Mike Wood (of the
Goldsboro Rifles), being on post at the wharf that night, and this fact
being known to prudent Cæsar, he steered for the creek to avoid him. As
these festive revellers were wading ashore, Mike, hearing the splashing
in the water, sung out, "who comes there!" receiving no reply, he
cocked his gun, and became very emphatic. Pearce, knowing that Mike
would shoot, answered very _fluently_, while in the water to his waist,
"don't you shoot me, Mike Wood, I am coming in as fast as I can." Mike
escorted the party to head quarters, and they performed some one else's
guard duty for several days.

We must not forget to mention our genial commissary, Capt. King, and
his courteous assistant, Mike Gretter, of the Grays. "Billy" King and
his little cosey quarters were just outside the fort, and so convenient
of a cold frosty morning, to call upon him and interview his _vial_ of
distilled fruit, hid away in the corner. _Vive le Roi, Billie._

On the 8th of September, private James Davis died at the fort.

On September the 28th, private Ed. Sterling, who was absent on
furlough, died at his home in Greensboro, N.C.

On the 25th of October, the U.S. Steamer "Union" was wrecked off
Bogue Banks near the fort. Her crew was brought to the fort and
confined there for a short time. What is of more interest was, that we
received valuable stores from the wreck, among others, elegant hair
mattresses, which now took the place of our shucks and straw.

These days at the fort were our halcyon days, as the dark hours were
to us yet unborn. The war had been so far a mere frolic. In the
radiant sunshine of the moment, it was the amusing phase of the
situation, not the tragic, that impressed us.


On the 7th of November, Lieut.-Col. John Sloan was ordered to report
for duty, to his regiment at Newberne. Some time in December Col.
George Singletary resigned and Lieut.-Col. John Sloan was elected
colonel of the regiment; Maj. T. C. Singletary was elected
Lieutenant-Colonel, and Lieut. John A. Gilmer, of the Grays--who had
been acting as adjutant of the regiment at Newberne--was elected
Major. The promotion of Lieut. Gilmer made a vacancy in the offices of
our company, and Sergeant John A. Sloan--at the time sergeant-major of
the fort--was elected to fill it.

On the 28th of February, 1862, we were ordered to join our regiment
then encamped at Fort Lane, on the Neuse River, below Newberne, North
Carolina. About mid-day we filed through the sally-port and bade a
long and sad farewell to Fort Macon. We were transported by boat to
Morehead City, and thence by rail to Newberne. We arrived at Fort Lane
late in the evening, and in the pouring rain, marched to our quarters.
Our position in camp was assigned us, and we began to make ourselves
comfortable in our new home. We had much baggage, more than would have
been allowed an entire corps a year afterwards. Every private had a
trunk, and every mess a cooking-stove, to speak nothing of the extras
of the officers. All this portable property we turned over to Gen.
Burnside, later in the season, for want of convenient transportation.

We had scarcely made ourselves snug in our winter quarters when we
learned that a large land and naval force, conjoined under command of
Gen. Burnside, was approaching Newberne. The fleet arrived in Neuse
River on the 12th of March, and the land forces were in our front on
the following day. On the night of the 13th we left our quarters and
moved down the south bank of the Neuse a short distance, where we were
placed in line of battle, in entrenchments which had previously been
constructed under the orders of Gen. L. O. B. Branch, commanding our
forces--our regiment being the extreme left of the lines, and resting
upon the river. The morning of the 14th broke raw and cold, the fog
was so dense that we could not see fifty yards beyond our works. As
soon as it lifted, a skirmish began upon the right of our lines
between the opposing pickets. About the same time the gunboats, which
were creeping slowly up the river, began to shell the woods. Under
cover of this random firing the land forces advanced. Our pickets
along the entire line were rapidly driven in, and the battle of
Newberne began. It is not my purpose here to venture a description of
this engagement or to make any remarks by way of criticism.

After repeated attacks, the right of the Confederate lines gave way,
which exposed our portion of the lines to an enfilade fire; the enemy
took immediate advantage of their success, and were now endeavoring to
turn our flank and get in our rear. We were ordered to fall back a
short distance, and made a stand a few hundred yards to the rear in
the woods. Meanwhile the guns in Fort Lane had been silenced by the
shots from the enemy's fleet; this gave the boats an unobstructed
passage to Newberne. Had they succeeded in reaching Newberne ahead of
us, they would have destroyed the bridges and thus cut off our
retreat, and forced a surrender of our entire command. Under these new
and trying circumstances, a devil-may-care retreat was ordered, with
instructions to reform at the depot in Newberne. We stood not upon the
order of going but "went," rivaling in speed the celerity of the famed
North Carolina militia at the battle of Guilford Court-House.

Before leaving our entrenchments, private S. H. Hunter was struck by a
fragment of shell, which had exploded near us, and killed. This was
the only casualty in our company and the first. Poor Hunter was struck
on the head and rendered unconscious. He was carried from the field
and brought with us to Kinston in an ambulance, but died on the way.
His remains were conveyed under escort to Greensboro. Sergeant Samuel
B. Jordan was captured on the retreat. He was exchanged and paroled
afterwards, but his term of enlistment having expired, he did not
again enlist.

The company, or at least a portion of it, reformed at the depot in
Newberne. From here we continued our retreat unmolested to Kinston,
where we arrived at a late hour in the night.

While at the depot in Newberne a special train was ordered for the
transportation of the sick and wounded. Some few others apparently
healthy and able-bodied, but constitutionally exhausted, sought shelter
on this train. Among these was my _body-guard_ "Bill," who, with
prudential forecast, had secured a berth early in the action and "held
his ground" until the train reached Greensboro. Bill says he simply
went home to inform "mar's" Robert that "mar's" John was safe and
"untouched." He returned in due season and enlisted with me "durin" the
war, was faithful to the end, and is part of our history.

We remained in and around Kinston performing picket duty on the roads
leading toward Newberne until the 22d of March. About the 25th we
changed our camp to "Black-jack," and on the 29th we moved to
Southwest Church.

The muster-roll of our company at this period contained one hundred
and twenty names, but of this number, owing to the measles,
whooping-cough, itch, and other "diseases dire," only seventy-three
were reported for duty.

On the 18th of March, Mike Gretter was detached and appointed brigade
commissary sergeant, in which position he served during the entire
war. On the 1st of April, A. D. Lindsay--a graduate of the sand-bag
department of Fort Macon--was appointed Ordnance Sergeant of our
regiment. About the 20th of April, our 1st Lieutenant, James T.
Morehead, Jr., resigned, to accept the position of captain in the 45th
North Carolina regiment. He was afterwards elected lieutenant-colonel
of the 53d regiment, and after the death of Col. Owens, was promoted
to the colonelcy. Colonel Morehead was wounded at Spottsylvania
Court-House, Gettysburg, and Hares' Hill, at which latter place he was
made a prisoner in a gallant charge of his command, and was held until
after the war.

Private John W. Nelson was detailed as permanent teamster to
regimental quarter-master, some time in April, and acted as such until
the 17th of March, 1863, when he died in the hospital at Charleston,
S. C.

The expiration of the term of enlistment of the twelve months' men was
now near at hand; and to provide measures to levy new troops, and to
hold those already in the field, President Davis was authorized by an
act of Congress "to call out and place in the military service for
three years all white male residents between the ages of 18 and 35
years, and to continue those already in the field until three years
from the date of enlistment, but those under 18 years and over 35 were
to remain 90 days." Under this act our company lost privates R. B.
Jones, W. D. Hanner, W. Hopkins, W. C. Winfree, and W. Burnsides, all
of whom were over 35 years of age. W. Burnsides rejoined us in April,
1863. Private John E. Wharton substituted P. A. Ricks on the 1st of
May, and returned to Guilford, where he raised a company and
re-entered the service as its commandant. Private Ed. Lindsey, who
left us, being under 18 years of age, was made a lieutenant in Capt.
Wharton's company. Ed. was killed in the month of April 1865.

On the 16th of April, the 27th North Carolina regiment reorganized.
Major John R. Cooke, who was at that time chief of artillery on Gen.
Holmes' staff, was elected colonel, R. W. Singletary re-elected
lieutenant-colonel, and John A. Gilmer, Jr., re-elected major. The
regiment was then assigned to Gen. Robert Ransom's Brigade, under
whose command we remained until the 1st of June.

On the 22d of April, our company reorganized as company "B." William
Adams was re-elected captain, John A. Sloan was elected 1st
lieutenant, John H. McKnight 2d lieutenant, and Frank A. Hanner, 2d
lieutenant junior; Benjamin G. Graham was appointed orderly sergeant,
Samuel B. Jordan (still prisoner) 2d sergeant, Thos. J. Sloan, 3d
sergeant, George W. Howlett, 4th sergeant, Will U. Steiner, 5th
sergeant, Ed B. Crowson, 1st corporal, Jed H. Lindsay, Jr., 2d
corporal, John D. Collins, 3d corporal, and Chas. A. Campbell, 4th
corporal. Lieutenant W. P. Wilson declined re-election in the company
to accept the position of adjutant of the regiment, tendered him by
Col. Cooke, which office he filled with much credit to himself and
regiment. He died in Greensboro on March 3d, 1863, after a severe

From the 4th to the 7th of May, we assisted in tearing up and
destroying the A. & N.C. Railroad from Kinston to Core Creek. We made
up our minds if Burnside pursued us again, he should come slowly, and
on foot.


From February to the tenth of May, the following men had joined our
company: Benjamin Burnsides, Henry Coble, R. L. Coltrain, John
Coltrain, D. L. Clark, John Cannady, W. W. Underwood, Jas. Hall, Jas.
R. Wiley, Hugh Hall, Wash. Williams, Lewis N. Isley, Stephen D.
Winbourne, W. W. McLean, Geo. H. Woolen, Wm. McFarland, Sam'l Young,
Lemuel May, Thos. L. Greeson, Rasper Poe, B. N. Smith, J. M. Edwards,
John H. Smith, R. L. Smith, Wm. Seats, Paisley Sheppard, Newton
Kirkman, James Lemons, Wm. Horney, Silas C. Dodson (rejoined), Jas. E.
McLean, Wm. May, S. F. McLean, E. F. Shuler, and J. J. Thom.

Samuel Park Weir, who had acted as chaplain to our company, in
connection with his duties as a private soldier, was transferred, in
May, to the 46th North Carolina regiment, to accept the office of
Lieutenant in one of the companies of that regiment. When the war
commenced, Sam was at the Theological Seminary in Columbia, S.C.
Leaving his studies, he shouldered his musket and entered the ranks of
the Grays in April, 1861. At the battle of Fredericksburg, Dec. 13th,
1862, as his regiment was passing in our rear, at the foot of Marye's
Hill, Sam halted a moment to speak to Col. Gilmer, who had been
wounded as we were moving into our position, and was advising him to
leave the field. While thus conversing with the colonel and the
writer, he was struck by a minie-ball, and instantly killed, falling
lifeless at our feet. His remains were carried to Greensboro, and
buried in the Presbyterian burying-grounds.

On the front line, he crossed the silent stream, leaving behind him
the fragrant memory of a name engraven to remain in the affections of
his comrades, and an example of modesty, purity, courage, and devotion
to principle unsurpassed. He sleeps the sleep of the blessed, and no
spot of earth contains a more gallant soldier, a truer patriot, or a
more faithful and sincere friend--

    "Sleep, soldier! Still, in honored rest,
      Your truth and valor wearing:
    The bravest are the tenderest--
      The loving are the daring."

On the 31st of May we folded our tents, made our preparations for a
hasty adieu to North Carolina, and left Kinston for the seat of war in
Virginia. We reached Richmond about one o'clock on the first of June.
As we neared the city, we could hear distinctly the guns of the battle
of Seven Pines, and as soon as we reached the depot, we were ordered
to the battle-field. We were marched rapidly through Richmond, all
anxious to take part in the battle now raging. Before we arrived on
the field, the fight had been fought and won, and our services were
not called for.

On the following day we were assigned to Gen. J. G. Walker's brigade,
and ordered into camp at Drury's Bluff, where we remained,
constructing fortifications, until the latter part of June. While in
camp here, B. N. Smith substituted Paul Crutchfield. Dr. L. G. Hunt,
acting surgeon of our company, was appointed assistant surgeon of the
regiment. "Gwyn," with his amiable and handsome hospital steward, C.
M. Parks, of the Orange Guards, continued to prescribe "them thar
pills" until the war ended.

On the 27th of June, 1862, the memorable "Seven Days' Fight" around
Richmond began. The Grays formed a portion of the reserve under Gen.
Holmes, and were marched from battle-field to battle-field, receiving
the shells of the enemy, and acting as targets for their sharp
shooters. On the 29th, Gen. Holmes crossed from the south side of the
James River, and on the 30th, being re-enforced by Gen. Wise's
brigade, moved down the river road with a view to gain, near to
Malvern Hill, a position which would command the supposed route of
McClellan's retreating army. We were posted on this road at New
Market, which was supposed to be the route McClellan would pursue in
his retreat to the James. Our generals and their guides, being
ignorant of the country, subsequently learned there was another road
running by the Willis church which would better serve the purpose of
the retreating foe, and we were moved to a position on this road. Here
we remained under the fire of the enemy's gun-boats, whose huge,
shrieking shells crashing through the trees and bursting in our midst,
inspired a degree of terror not justified by their effectiveness. The
dust created by our march gave the enemy a knowledge of our position,
and caused the gun-boats to open this heavy fire upon us. Instead of
finding the enemy a straggling mass, as had been reported, they were
entrenched between West's house and Malvern Hill, commanding our
position with an open field between us.

General Holmes' artillery opened fire upon the enemy's infantry, which
immediately gave way, and simultaneously their batteries, of
twenty-five or thirty guns, and their gun-boats made a cross-fire upon
us. Their force, both in infantry and artillery, being vastly superior
to ours, any attempt upon our part to make an assault being considered
worse than useless, we were withdrawn at night-fall. The enemy kept up
their cannonading until after dark.

On the 1st of July, late in the afternoon, line of battle was formed
and orders were issued for a general advance at a given signal, and
the bloody battle of Malvern Hill began. Several determined efforts
were made to storm Crews Hill; "brigades advanced bravely across the
open field raked by the fire of a hundred cannon and the muskets of
large bodies of infantry. Some were broken and gave way; others
approached close to the guns, driving back the infantry, compelling
the advance batteries to retire to escape capture and mingling their
dead with those of the enemy. For want of co-operation the assaults of
the attacking columns were too weak to break the enemy's line, and
after struggling gallantly, sustaining and inflicting great loss, they
were compelled successively to retire. The firing continued until
after 9 p.m., but no decided result was gained. At the cessation of
firing several fragments of different commands were lying down and
holding their ground within a short distance of the enemy's line, and
as soon as the fighting ceased an informal truce was established by
common consent. Parties from both armies, with lanterns and litters,
wandered over the field seeking for the wounded, whose groans could
not fail to move with pity the hearts of friends and foe." McClellan
withdrew with his army during the night, and hastily retreated to
Harrison's landing on the James.


Early on the next morning the rain began to fall in torrents, and
continued for forty-eight hours, rendering the roads almost
impassable. It was reported that the enemy were crossing the James,
and we were ordered back to our camp near Drury's Bluff. About
sun-down we commenced our weary and hard march. Our men were worn out
by continuous marching and loss of sleep, still we plodded along,
reaching our camp, 17 miles distant, about 3 o'clock in the morning
thoroughly drenched. Col. Cooke had gone ahead of us, and having
aroused the men left in charge of the camp, had great blazing fires in
front of our tents awaiting our arrival.

On the 6th, we left Drury's Bluff and marched to Petersburg, spending
a day there; on the morning of the 8th we were ordered to Fort
Powhatan on the James below City Point. About daylight on the morning
of the 11th we were placed in ambush on a high bluff on the river with
instructions to fire into any vessel that might attempt to pass. We
had not been long in our position when a transport called the "Daniel
Webster" was spied approaching us. When she steamed up opposite us,
the batteries which had accompanied us let loose the "dogs of war,"
and riddled her cabins and hull. She floated off down the river
disabled, but we had no means of knowing what damage we had done to
the crew. Very soon the gun-boats below opened fire upon us, and, for
a mile below, the woods and banks of the river were alive with shot
and shell. We withdrew our artillery and made a similar attempt the
next day, but found no game.

We returned to Petersburg and remained in camp there until the 19th of
August, picketing up and down the James River.

On the 31st of July we were sent down the river as support to the
artillery which had been ordered to Coggins' Point to shell McClellan's
camp. On the night of the 1st of August we had about fifty pieces of
our artillery in position; we could not show ourselves in the daytime,
as the enemy had their balloons up and could almost see the "promised
land" around Richmond. About 2 o'clock in the morning we opened fire
upon McClellan's camp on the opposite bank of the river. His camp fires
and the lights from the shipping in the river formed a grand panorama.
After a few shots from our artillery, these lights quickly disappeared.
We kept up a constant fire for several hours, withdrew, and at daylight
took up the line of march for Petersburg. After we had retired far out
of reach of their guns, the enemy opened the valves of their ordnance
and belched forth sounds infernal, but their gunpowder and iron was all
wasted upon imaginary forces.

On the 20th of August we were ordered to Richmond, remaining there,
at Camp Lee, until the 26th, when we boarded the train for Rapidan
Station, on the Orange & Alexandria Railroad. We remained in camp at
this point until the 1st of September.

Sergeant Geo. W. Howlett, being disabled for service in the field on
account of his eyes, left us on the 23d of July. Private R. L.
Coltrain was discharged by surgeon's certificate about the same time.
Corporal John D. Collins, on detail as one of the color-guard--and
who, in the absence of the regular color-guard of the regiment, had
carried our flag in the battles around Richmond--died of typhoid
fever, while we were encamped at Drury's Bluff. On the 8th of August,
private W. C. Clapp died at his home, and private John H. Smith at the
hospital in Petersburg. On the 17th, Hal Puryear substituted a most
excellent soldier in the person of Louis Lineberry. About this time a
regimental band was formed, and the Grays furnished as their quota:
Ed. B. Higgins, Samuel Lipsicomb, and Thomas J. Sloan; each of whom
became excellent "tooters."

After the series of engagements at Bull Run and on the Plains of
Manassas, the condition of Maryland encouraged the belief that the
presence of our army would excite some active demonstration upon the
part of her people, and that a military success would regain Maryland.
Under these considerations, it was decided by our leaders to cross
the army of Northern Virginia into Western Maryland, and then, by
threatening Pennsylvania, to induce the Federal army to withdraw from
our territory to protect their own.

Gen. J. G. Walker, our brigadier--now in command of the division--ordered
us from our camp at Rapidan Station, on the morning of September 1st,
and we set out with the army of Northern Virginia on what is termed
the "first Maryland campaign." Our first day's march halted us at
Warrenton. On the 4th, we reached the battle-field of Manassas, finding
many of the enemy's dead still unburied, from the engagement a few days
previous. On the 5th, we passed through the villages of Haymarket and
New Baltimore, and rested at Leesburg on the evening of the 6th.
McClellan was ignorant of Lee's plans, and his army remained in close
vicinity to the lines of fortifications around Washington, until the
sixth. Early next morning (Sunday), we forded the Potomac at Noland's
Ferry, and were occupying the shores of "My Maryland." Our band struck
up the "tune," but the citizens we came in contact with did not seem
disposed to "come." We had evidently crossed at the wrong ford. On the
next day, the 8th, we arrived at a small place called Buckettown, where
we rested until the morning of the ninth. About 10 o'clock, we reached
Frederick city; here we found the main army, and our division was
assigned to Gen. Longstreet's corps. In a skirmish with the enemy's
cavalry, near the city, Jas. A. Orrell and Thos. R. Greeson were

On the night of the 9th, we, in company with our division, were
quietly marched to the mouth of the Monocacy river to destroy the
aqueduct. We were tramping all night and accomplished nothing; the
manoeuver, as it afterward appeared, was but a feint to draw the
attention of the enemy away from the movements of "Stonewall's" corps,
then marching on Harper's Ferry. About daylight next morning we found
ourselves again in the vicinity of Buckettown; we proceeded some 5
miles further, where we formed a line of battle, and rested on our
arms in this position all day in full view of the enemy, who were
posted on the hills beyond us, and to the east of Buckettown. As soon
as night came, we started off hurriedly in the direction of Frederick;
having gone in this course some three miles we countermarched and took
the road for Point of Rocks on the Potomac. Just as day was breaking,
on the morning of the 12th, after a rapid march, we reached Point of
Rocks and recrossed the Potomac. We were completely bewildered as to
our course, and no one seemed to know what all this manoeuvering
would lead to. During the day, we ascertained we were on the road
leading to Harper's Ferry, but our course was so repeatedly changed
that we had but this consolation, that "if we did not know where we
were, or where we were going, the Yankees didn't, for the Devil
himself could not keep track of us." At night we reached Hillsboro, in
Loudon County. Va., and camped near there. On the 13th, we were in the
vicinity of Harper's Ferry, and at night took possession of Loudon
Heights, on the east side of the Shenandoah, and were in readiness to
open fire upon Harper's Ferry. General McLaws had been ordered to
seize Maryland Heights, on the north side of the Potomac, opposite
Harper's Ferry. Finding them in possession of the enemy, he assailed
their works and carried them; they retreated to Harper's Ferry, and on
the 14th, its investment by our forces was complete. As soon as we
gained our position, which was accomplished by a circuitous route up
the steep and ragged mountain, the enemy in and around Harper's Ferry
opened fire upon us from their batteries. Owing to the extreme
elevation, most of their shells fell short; a few burst over us, but
did no damage. The batteries attached to our division were carried by
hand to the top of the Heights, and placed in position. Early on the
morning of the 15th, the attack upon the garrison began. Stonewall
Jackson's batteries opened fire from Bolivar Heights, in conjunction
with ours and the artillery on Maryland Heights; in about two hours,
"by the grace of God," as Jackson had foretold, the garrison,
consisting of 11,000 men, surrendered. Seventy-three pieces of
artillery, 13,000 small arms, and a large quantity of military stores
fell into our hands.

On the night of the 15th we made our descent from the Heights, crossed
the mountain and resumed our march. About midday of the 16th we
reached Shepherdstown, crossed the Potomac and went into camp near
Sharpsburg, Maryland.


On the morning of the 17th of September, just before day-break, we
were aroused from our slumbers and moved to a position in line of
battle on the extreme right of the Confederate lines. At early dawn
the enemy opened their artillery from both sides of the Antietam, the
heaviest fire being directed against our left. Under cover of this
fire a large force of infantry attacked Gen. Jackson's division, and
for some time the conflict raged with fury and alternate success. Gen.
Early, in command of Ewell's division, was sent to their support, when
Jackson's division was withdrawn, its ammunition being nearly
exhausted. The battle was now renewed with great violence, and the
troops of McLaws and J. G. Walker were brought from the right. With
these re-enforcements Gen. Early attacked resolutely the large force
opposed to him, and drove them back in some confusion beyond the
position our troops had occupied at the beginning of the engagement.
This attack upon our left was speedily followed by one in heavy force
on the centre, and our regiment was double-quicked one and a half
miles to near the centre, and placed in line about one mile to the
left of the town of Sharpsburg.

The gallant and conspicuous part which the 27th regiment took in the
fight, Capt. Graham, of the Orange Guards, describes graphically as

    "Forming in a corn-field we advanced under a heavy fire of grape
    and canister at a quick step up a little rise and halted at a rail
    fence, our right considerably advanced. After holding this
    position for half an hour or more our front was changed so as to
    be on a line with the other troops. In the meantime we had
    suffered heavily, and I think had inflicted equally as much
    damage. [On this first advance Capt. Adams was shot down.] About 1
    o'clock the enemy having retired behind the hill upon which they
    were posted, and none appearing within range in our front, Col.
    Cooke ordered us to fall back some twenty steps in the corn and
    lie down so as to draw them on; he, in the meantime, regardless of
    personal danger from sharpshooters, remained at the fence beside a
    small tree. After remaining there some 20 minutes, the enemy
    attempted to sneak up a section of artillery to the little woods
    upon our left. Colonel Cooke, watching the movement, ordered the
    four left companies of our regiment up to the fence and directed
    them to fire upon this artillery. At the first fire, before they
    had gotten into position, nearly every horse and more than half
    the men fell, and the infantry line which had moved up to support
    them showed evident signs of wavering. Col. Cooke seeing this, and
    having received orders to charge if opportunity offered,
    immediately ordered a charge. Without waiting a second word of
    command we leaped the fence and 'made at them,' and soon we had
    captured three guns and had the troops opposed to us in full
    retreat. A battery posted near a little brick church upon a hill
    to our left was playing sad havoc with us, but supposing that
    would be taken by the troops upon our left--who we concluded were
    charging with us--we still pursued the flying foe. Numbers of them
    surrendered to us and they were ordered to the rear. We pushed on
    and soon wheeled to the right, drove down their line, giving them
    all the while an enfilade fire, and succeeded in breaking six
    regiments who fled in confusion. After pushing on this way for a
    while we found ourselves opposed by a large body of troops behind
    a stone wall in a corn-field. Stopping to contend with these, we
    found that we were almost out of ammunition. Owing to this fact,
    and not being supported in our charge, we were ordered to fall
    back to our original position. This of course was done at
    double-quick. As we returned we experienced the perfidy of those
    who had previously surrendered to us, and whom we had not taken
    time to disarm. They, seeing that we were not supported, attempted
    to form a line in our rear, and in a few minutes would have done
    so. As it was we had to pass between two fires: a part of the
    troops having been thrown back to oppose our movement on their
    flank, and these supposed prisoners having formed on the other
    side. A bloody lane indeed it proved to us. Many a brave man lost
    his life in that retreat. At some points the lines were not sixty
    yards distant on either side. Arriving at our original position,
    we halted and reformed behind the rail fence. We opened fire with
    the few remaining cartridges we had left and soon checked the
    advance of the enemy, who did not come beyond the line which they
    occupied in the morning. In a short while all our ammunition was
    exhausted. Courier after courier was sent after ammunition, but
    none was received. Four or five times during the afternoon,
    couriers came from Gen. Longstreet, telling Col. Cooke to hold his
    position at all hazards, 'as it was the key to the whole line.'
    Cooke's reply was, 'tell Gen. Longstreet to send me some
    ammunition. I have not a cartridge in my command, but I will hold
    my position at the point of the bayonet.'"

Mr. Davis, in his history, says: "_Col. Cooke, with the 27th North
Carolina regiment, stood boldly in line without a cartridge._"

    "About 5 o'clock in the afternoon we were relieved, and moved to
    the rear about one mile. After resting half an hour and getting
    fresh ammunition, we were again marched to the front, and placed in
    line in the rear of the troops who had relieved us. Here we were
    subjected to a severe shelling, but had no chance to return the
    fire. After nightfall we rejoined our division on the left, and
    with them bivouaced upon the battle-field."

General R. E. Lee, in his report of this battle, makes complimentary
mention of our regiment, and says, further, "this battle was fought by
less than forty thousand men on our side, all of whom had undergone
the greatest labors and hardships in the field and on the march.
Nothing could surpass the determined valor with which they met the
large army of the enemy, fully supplied and equipped, and the result
reflected the highest credit on the officers and men engaged."

General McClellan, in his official report, states that he had in
action in the battle 87,184 men of all arms. Lee's entire strength was
35,255. "These 35,000 Confederates were the very flower of the army of
northern Virginia, who, with indomitable courage and inflexible
tenacity, wrestled for the mastery in the ratio of one to three of
their adversaries; at times it appeared as if disaster was inevitable,
but succor never failed, and night found Lee's lines unbroken and his
army still defiant. The drawn battle of Sharpsburg was as forcible an
illustration of southern valor and determination as was furnished
during the whole period of the war, when the great disparity in
numbers between the two armies is considered.

The Grays went into this battle with 32 men, rank and file. Capt.
William Adams, privates Jas. E. Edwards, A. F. Coble, James M.
Edwards, R. Leyton Smith and Samuel Young were killed on the field.
Privates Peter M. Brown, Benjamin Burnsides and Robert L. Donnell were
badly wounded and fell into the hands of the enemy. R. L. Donnell died
of his wounds at Chester, Pa., November 6th, 1862. Privates W. D.
Archer, Walter D. McAdoo, J. E. McLean, Samuel F. McLean, L. L.
Prather and W. W. Underwood were wounded and sent to the hospital. W.
W. Underwood died of his wounds September 29th, 1862. Privates Paul
Crutchfield, H. Rufus Forbis, Rufus B. Gibson, James M. Hardin, James
L. Wilson and William McFarland were exchanged and returned to their
company the following November, except McFarland, who was reported

On account of the forced and continuous march from Rapidan, many of
our men from sheer exhaustion and sickness were compelled to fall out
of ranks, among them some of the best soldiers in the company.

Captain Adams, as before stated, fell early in the action. He was
carried from the field and buried in the cemetery at Shepherdstown.
His remains were afterwards removed and interred in the cemetery at
Greensboro. He was a brave and gallant officer, and fell front-faced
with his armor on. The other members of the company who were killed,
wrapped in their martial garb, sleep in some unknown grave, on the
spot where they fell, amid the carnage and gore of the battle-field:

    "Whether unknown or known to fame--
    Their cause and country still the same--
      They died, and wore the gray."

On the 18th we occupied the position of the preceding day. Our ranks
were increased during the day, and our general forces were augmented
by the arrival of troops; but our army was in no condition to take the
offensive, and the army of McClellan had been too severely handled to
justify a renewal of the attack, consequently the day passed without
any hostile demonstrations. During the night our army was withdrawn
from Sharpsburg, and at day-break on the morning of the 19th we
recrossed the Potomac at Shepherdstown. After fording the river, we
halted a short distance on the hills near by, and were engaged in
drying our clothing and making a breakfast from our scanty rations of
pop-corn and hard tack, when a force of the enemy, (Porter's corps,)
who had the temerity to cross the river in pursuit, made their
appearance. Gen. A. P. Hill, in charge of the rear guard of the army,
met them, made a charge upon them and drove them into the river. In
his report of this engagement he says: "The broad surface of the
Potomac was blue with the floating bodies of our foe. But few escaped
to tell the tale. By their own account they lost three thousand men,
killed and drowned. Some two hundred prisoners were taken."

The condition of our troops now demanding repose, we were ordered to
the Occoquan, near Martinsburg. On our march another attempt to harass
our rear was reported, and we were sent back to the vicinity of
Shepherdstown; finding "all quiet on the Potomac," the march was again
resumed at night, and on the 21st we went into camp near Martinsburg.
After spending a few days here we were moved to the neighborhood of
Bunker Hill and Winchester, and remained in camp until the 23d of

On the 22d of September, while in camp near Martinsburg, the Grays
proceeded to fill the offices made vacant by the battle of the 17th.
Lieut. J. A. Sloan was promoted to captain; 2d Lieut. McKnight to 1st
Lieutenant; Frank A. Hanner to 2d Lieutenant; and Sergeant B. G.
Graham to junior 2d Lieutenant. J. Harper Lindsay was appointed
orderly sergeant. Corporals Wm. M. Paisley and A. C. Cheely were made
Sergeants. Privates R. D. Weatherly, Thos. J. Rhodes and H. Rufus
Forbis were appointed corporals.

On the 8th of September, private R. D. Brown died at the hospital in
Petersburg, Va.; on the 12th, private R. L. Coble, at Frederick City,
Md.; on the 19th, Hugh Hall in hospital at Richmond; and on the 24th,
privates Wm. Seats and Wm. H. McLean died in hospital at Winchester,


About the middle of October, McClellan moved his army across the
Potomac, east of the Blue Ridge, and bent his course southward. Later
in the month, he began to incline eastwardly from the mountains, and
finally concentrated his forces in the neighborhood of Warrenton,
Virginia. On the 7th of November he was relieved of the command of the
army of the Potomac, and Gen. Burnside, "under Federal dispensation,"
became his successor. The indications were that Fredericksburg was
again to be occupied. Gen. Lee, with his usual foresight, divining his
purpose, promptly made such disposition as was necessary to forestall
him. McLaw's and Ransom's divisions were ordered to proceed at once to
that city.

On the morning of the 23d we broke up our camp at Winchester, and
after a long but pleasant day's march, reached the vicinity of
Millwood; from thence we journeyed on to Paris, in Loudon County. Our
march through this Arcadia of Virginia, with its picturesque scenery,
and along those splendid and wonderful turnpikes, as they stretched
out before us, formed a panorama never to be forgotten. The giant
hills stood around like sentinels wrapped in their everlasting
silence; behind these, still bolder hills, and again behind these, the
blueness of the distant mountains. The day was glad with the golden
brightness of an October sun, and as I gazed upon these mountains,
clothed in their autumnal beauty, and in their everlasting fixity of
repose, I could but contrast this grandeur and silence with the too
recent scenes of blood and tumult upon the hills of Antietam. How
brief, how insignificant is man's existence! Encamped so high above
the world filled us with a sense of exaltation and awe. Fires were
soon lighted, and the men, weary with marching, wrapped in their
blankets, stretched themselves upon the ground to sleep, perchance to
dream of firesides in distant homes where--

    "Belike sad eyes with tearful strain,
      Gazed northward very wistfully
    For him that ne'er would come again."

The next morning broke cold and threatening. We resumed our march and
had proceeded but a few miles when the rain began to fall. Later in
the day it came down in torrents, and the wind was blowing gales.
About dark, in the midst of this storm, we were halted in a large
hickory grove on the side of the Blue Ridge, near the small village of
Upperville. Our men comprehended the situation at once, and, though
thoroughly drenched and chilled, soon had their axes ringing in the
forest, and large log fires were ablaze over the camp. The storm
continued with fury all night, to sleep was impossible, and we were
forced to pass the most disagreeable night we had ever experienced.

On the 29th we retraced our steps to Paris. On the following morning,
acting as an escort to a foraging party, we proceeded to Middleboro.
At night we returned to camp, rich in wagon loads of corn and
provender, also securing a large lot of fine beeves. On the next day,
leaving Paris, we moved by way of Salem in the direction of Culpepper
Court-House, which place we reached on the 2d of November, and
remained there until the 4th. Sergeant Harper Lindsay, while here,
accepted the position of adjutant of the 45th North Carolina regiment,
and Sergeant Chas. Campbell was promoted to orderly sergeant in his

On the night of the 4th, after a tiresome day's march, we went into
camp on the top of Cedar Mountain. We were halted on a bleak and barren
hill with no fuel within our reach. Col. Cooke, under the
circumstances, suspended "special orders" in reference to destroying
private property, and gave the men permission to burn the rails from
the fences near by. For this necessary disobedience some spiteful
person reported him and he was placed in arrest, from which he was
released next day without a court martial. After our company had made
its fires and were busy trying to make a supper from their scanty
rations, I strolled over to Cooke's headquarters and found him sitting
moodily over _his_ fire of _rails_. We began to discuss the officers of
the brigade, and while he was idly turning a splinter he held in his
fingers, it fell from his hand and stuck upright in the ground. He
turned quickly to me, slapped me on the back and laughingly said:
"John, that is an omen of good luck." I surmised to what he had
reference--a probability of his promotion had been whispered--and
replied, I did not take much stock in splinters, but I hoped in this
instance the omen might be realized. In a few moments, several men from
the regiment, with their canteens, passed near us and one of them, a
lank, lean soldier, inquired of Cooke if he could tell him where the
spring of water was. With some irritability in his tone he replied,
"_No_, go hunt for it." The thirsty questioner, possibly recognizing
him, made no reply, but turned away thinking, no doubt, under other
circumstances, he would have answered him differently. The soldier had
gone but a short distance when Cooke called him back, apologized for
his hasty speech and indifference, and informed him kindly where he
could find the water.

Not many days afterwards the splinter omen was interpreted, and Col.
John E. Cooke, of the 27th North Carolina regiment (though junior
colonel of the brigade), was promoted for gallantry to brigadier
general, and assigned to the command of Gen. J. G. Walker's brigade,
who was transferred to the Mississippi department. I have introduced
these incidents, merely to illustrate the noble traits of character of
this gallant and courteous gentleman and soldier, who was acknowledged
by Gen. Lee himself to be _the_ brigadier of his army. Of his services
with his North Carolina brigade history already leaves him a record. He
is a man of chivalric courage, and possesses that magnanimity of heart
which ever wins the affections of a soldier. He was beloved by his
entire command. A truer sword was not drawn in defence of the South and
her cause, and a more untarnished blade never returned to its scabbard
when the unhappy conflict was over.

Upon the promotion of Col. Cooke--Lieut.-Col. Singletary having
resigned on account of wounds--Major John A. Gilmer was promoted to
Colonel, Capt. George F. Whitefield, of Company C, to Lieutenant-Colonel,
and Capt. Jos. C. Webb, of the Orange Guards, to Major. The brigades
in our division were also changed, and under the reassignment of
regiments, Cooke's command consisted entirely of North Carolina troops,
and was _well known_ in Lee's army as "_Cooke's North Carolina

On the 8th of November we were moved to Madison Court-House, where we
remained until the 18th. About the 15th the army of the Potomac was
reported in motion, and their gun-boats and transports had entered
Aquia Creek in their "on to Fredericksburg." On the morning of the
18th, our division received marching orders, and we also set out for
Fredericksburg. The weather was very cold, and our march was made
through rain and sleet; the ground was frozen, and some of our men
being barefooted, their feet cut by the ice, left their bloody tracks
along the route. The men, under all these hardships and exposures,
were in excellent spirits, and no one escaped their gibes and jokes.
Every few miles, growing in the corner of the fences and in the old
field, the persimmon tree ever dear to a North Carolinian's soul
appeared, and immediately discipline was forgotten, ranks broken, and
the tree besieged. Sam Hiatt once remarked that the green persimmon
was invaluable to an ordinary soldier, as a few of them would always
draw his stomach to the proportions suited to a Confederate ration. On
long marches the brigades marched by turns to the front. On one
occasion, while we were seated on both sides of the road waiting for
the rear brigades to pass to the front, a young and clever officer of
our command, who had assiduously cultivated his upper lip, and by the
aid of various tonsorial applications made pretense of possessing a
mustache, stepped out into the middle of the road and commenced, as is
usual with beginners, to toy with his hairs; presently a rough
specimen of a soldier came trotting along astride of a pack mule, and
as he neared the officer he halted his steed with a loud and long
"whoa!" Leaning forward, with a quizzical look, he politely but firmly
requested the officer "to please remove that mustache from the main
highway and allow him and his mule to pass." [The mustache was
_raze-rd_ at Fredericksburg.]

On the 23d we reached the vicinity of Fredericksburg, and employed
the interval--before the advance made by the enemy on the 11th of
December--in strengthening our line, which reached from the
Rappahannock, about one mile above Fredericksburg, along the hills in
rear of that city to the Richmond & Fredericksburg Railroad.

About 11 o'clock on the morning of the 13th, Burnside, "whose turn
it now was to wrestle with General Lee," massed his forces under cover
of the houses of Fredericksburg and moved forward with his grand
divisions to seize Marye's and Willis' Hills--

          "With a hundred thousand men
          For the Rebel slaughter-pen,
    And the blessed Union flag a-flying o'er him."

At the foot of Marye's Hill ran the Telegraph Road along which, for
some four hundred yards, is a stone revetment. On the crest of the
hill, at intervals, in pits, were posted nine guns of the Washington
artillery, under Col. Walton. Three regiments of Cobb's brigade and
commanded by him, were in position behind this stone wall at the foot
of the hill. Some two hundred yards in a ravine, and immediately
behind the Washington artillery, lay our (Cooke's) brigade. About one
o'clock all the guns on Stafford Heights were directed against our
guns on Marye's Hill, endeavoring to draw their fire so as to cover
the advance of their infantry. Our artillery, instead of replying,
remained silent until their infantry had deployed, when they poured a
storm of canister into them. French's division came first, and they
were swept away before the deployment was completed. The battle now
lulled for some twenty minutes, when the enemy "entered the ring" with
Hancock to the front.

About this time our brigade was moved to the crest of the hill. The
46th, 48th and 15th regiments were halted on the hill on the line of
the batteries, while our regiment (27th), in the midst of a terrific
fire, passed rapidly through the Washington artillery, and
double-quicked down the steep incline into the Telegraph Road and
joined in the fire. During our advance Col. Gilmer was severely
wounded in the leg, but succeeded in reaching the foot of the hill.

Hancock was repulsed with terrible slaughter. Gen. Cobb had been
previously killed, and Gen. Kershaw now took command of the troops in
the road. After we had reached our position behind the stone wall,
Gen. Cooke received a severe wound in the head and was carried from
the field. The command of the brigade now devolved upon Col. Hall of
the 46th regiment, who moved his and the other regiments of the
brigade into the Telegraph Road. The enemy now made his third effort,
when Howard's and Sturgis' and Getty's divisions advanced bravely to
the desperate work assigned them. We took heavy toll from their
columns, and, like their predecessors, they fell back in confusion.
Lastly came the sixth and final assault by Humphrey's division, of
Hooker's corps, and charge it did, as game as death. They, too, had to
bite the dust, and their broken and shattered columns fled in disorder
to the city, leaving the field strewn with their slain.

About 9 o'clock we threw forward our pickets and, in the darkness,
many of their raw recruits came into our lines, their guns and
accoutrements perfectly new; some of them had not fired a shot and
could scarcely tell their nativity.

We remained in line of battle during the night, expecting and hoping
for a renewal of the assault on the next day. The 14th (Sunday) came,
however, and went away without a renewal. On the 15th we were moved a
few hundred yards farther to our left, and remained in this position
until the morning of the 16th, when it was discovered that the enemy,
availing himself of the darkness of the night, had recrossed the

"A river has always been considered a good line of defence by most
writers on the art of war, provided certain principles be observed in
defending. When Napoleon crossed the Danube, in 1809, in the presence
of the Archduke Charles, who was a good general, he was forced to
retreat to the islands of Lobau and Enzersdorf, after the bloody days
of Essling. Had not the Archduke assumed the offensive so _vigorously_,
the Emperor's loss would not have been so great, and he could have
remained on the left bank." This later "Essling" army was fairly and
terribly beaten, forced to recross the river, after great loss of life
and labor, and was spared (thanks to his bridges and darkness of the
night) utter annihilation.

Burnside testified, before the committee on the conduct of the war,
that he had, in round numbers, one hundred thousand men, all of whom
were engaged in this battle, and that he failed because it was found
impossible to get the men up to the works; that the Confederates' fire
was too hot for them. Of Lee's forces, only about twenty thousand men
were actively engaged. The casualties in our company, owing to the
protection afforded us by the stone wall behind which we were posted,
were comparatively few. Private William D. Archer, a splendid specimen
of a soldier, was killed; Privates James M. Hardin severely, and Frank
G. Chilcutt slightly, wounded. On the 16th, we were removed to near
Hamilton's Crossing, and remained in camp there until the 3d day of
January, 1863. While here, some of our officers and men were in
demand, and Lieut. B. G. Graham was detailed as brigade ordnance
officer. Silas C. Dodson was appointed clerk in the commissary
department under Major Hays, and David H. Edwards, quartermaster-sergeant.
On the 4th of December, Private John W. Reid was transferred to the
48th North Carolina regiment, having been elected to the position of
lieutenant in one of its companies. On the 17th, Corporal Will L.
Bryan, having contracted a severe cold on the march from Madison
Court-House, died in camp. Private Thos. J. Rhodes was appointed
corporal in his stead.


The muster-roll of the Grays, in camp near Fredericksburg, numbered,
on the 31st day of December, for duty, two commissioned officers, four
sergeants, four corporals, and thirty-eight privates; on detached
service, six privates; sick (present), three privates; sick and
wounded (absent) twenty-three privates; total present and absent, rank
and file, eighty-nine.

On the third of January, 1863, we were ordered to hold ourselves in
readiness to march, and about 10 o'clock we were on the road leading
towards Richmond. The first day's march found us encamped on the
Telegraph Road, 15 miles from Fredericksburg. We arrived at Richmond
on the 6th, passed through the city, and made camp on the Richmond &
Petersburg turnpike. The following day we registered at Petersburg,
camping just outside of the city limits, and remaining there until the
14th. Next morning (15th) we boarded the cars for North Carolina, and
reached the city of Goldsboro on the evening cf the 16th--being our
first visit to the State since our summary expulsion from Newberne by

The 19th found us on the outskirts of the straggling little village of
Kenansville; thence onward, we marched through a sparsely-settled
country to South Washington, where we remained until the 1st of
February. From South Washington, we moved about 7 miles eastward to
the scattered town of Burgaw, where we remained until the 20th.

It was here at Burgaw that our foot-sore and weary boys found realized
those blissful dreams which sometimes hover over the hard couch of a
soldier and lure him into the fable land of unknown joys from which he

    "The horns of Elfland faintly blowing."

It was here that we found the sweet potato, the perfectly cultured
sweet potato, as it only grows and ripens in that portion of eastern
North Carolina. Imagine, if you can, the solid comfort--after the many
hardships and adventures of the bustling year of 1862--it would afford
a native Carolina "Cornfed," to be able to sit down under his own

    "An' hear among their furry boughs
    The baskin' West wind purr contented,"

and occupy his leisure moments in roasting a genuine yam. There were
no armed blue-coats here, like little Miss Muffet's spider, to
frighten us away. We were in a land untouched as yet by the foot of
war; no war-dog had bayed here--it was still the domain of ancient
peace; and the little villages slept in the hollows of the pine-clad
hills, or perched in security upon the uplands. It was also at that
delightful season of the year when the women and children were no
longer vexed with the cares of agricultural pursuits. The sweet potato
crop had been dug, the virgin dip had been scooped out of the last
box, and nothing now remained but to enjoy in peace the products of
honest industry.

On the night of the 20th we left these plaintive pines, marched to
Wilmington, and were soon aboard of the cars destined for Charleston,
S.C. About mid-day of the 22d--after slight detentions at Marion
Court-House and Florence--we arrived at the depot in Charleston.
While here awaiting orders--the men remaining upon the open flat
cars--several impudent and inquisitive idlers, necessary adjuncts
to every depot, gathered around us. Among them happened to be a
well-dressed, dapper fellow, in his home-guard-suit-of-gray and
snow-white "b'iled" shirt. Being of an inquisitive nature, and seeking
information, he had the rashness to address Jim Pearce, and inquire of
him: "_Whose command? Where are you stationed, sir?_" Jim, who was
sitting on the edge of the car, idly dangling his feet, seemed to "take
him in" at once, and rising to the dignity of a full-fledged veteran,
replied (very feelingly): "_Stationed! Stationed, sir! Stationed, the
H--l-fire!_ We have chased and been chased by the Yankees from beyond
the shores of Maryland to this city, and we are _still_ on the wing!"
As the cars moved off, Jim gave him a quizzical lookout of his left
eye, smiled, and faintly whispered "stationed?"

It is a peculiar trait of the faculty of memory that it is very prone
to gather up the "unconsidered trifles of life," and to let slip many
of its apparently more important events. But my reader must remember
that war is not all tragedy,--that there are smiles as well as tears
in the drama.

The evening of the 23d found us at Pocataligo, a small railway station
on the Charleston & Savannah Railroad. Remaining here a few days, we
next located at Coosawhatchie, another depot, eight miles away, and
about sixty miles from Charleston. Having an ample supply of tents, we
laid out a regular camp; with no battle to fight, and very light
picket duty to perform, we passed a quiet and pleasant time, until the
23d of April. The country around Coosawhatchie is low and marshy; the
lakes and streams abound with alligators; the forests of live-oak,
shrouded and festooned with a gray moss, present a weird and
picturesque appearance; the products are rice, pinders, and grits; the
pasturage is confined to a few lean, lank cattle, called by the
natives "high-walk." We relied upon the markets of Charleston and
Savannah for our commissary stores, and the morning train rarely
failed to bring us fresh shad. Our provident surgeon had a good supply
of wet groceries, which sustained our _sick_, and our stay in South
Carolina wore pleasantly, having no special fighting to do.

While in camp at Coosawhatchie, the writer and a comrade (Maj. Webb)
mounted our horses one bright Sunday morning to enjoy the charming
beauty of the day, and the invigorating influences of the sea air.
After riding for about two hours over the level country with its
monotonous aspect, we came suddenly and unexpectedly upon one of those
charming country seats, which were once the pride and delight of the
landed proprietor. The mansion, situated upon a gentle elevation, was
of old-time construction with the wide hall, large rooms and broad
staircases, and colonade of immense pillars supporting the roof of the
front porch. It was embowered in thick clusters of live oaks which
stood round in a kind of outer park, while the inner park was composed
of terraces covered with flowers and shrubbery, while thickets of rose
gardens seemed to stretch in every direction. An aged negro was the
only living being about the place. He told us that the place was
called "Roseland;" that old massa was dead; that the two boys were in
the army, and that Miss Minnie was at school in Raleigh, N.C.

    "A merry place, 'tis said, in days of yore:
    But something ails it now."--

Vandal hands had done their accustomed work. The beautiful grounds
were sadly disfigured; the shrubbery was broken down; the crops and
forage had been gathered by alien hands, and only the poor ghost
remained of this once peaceful and happy home.

During our encampment in South Carolina, we were notified of the death
of private R. G. Boling, at hospital in Richmond. Jas. H. Gant died on
the 18th of February; about the same time, Isaac F. Lane died at
Leesburg, N.C.; his remains were carried to Guilford. On the 1st of
March, James M. Lemons died at his home. On the 14th of April, Jas. S.
Hall died in hospital at Hardyville, S.C., and was buried in the
cemetery at Charleston.

Private Sam Smith, unfit for active service, substituted Jas. E.
Lloyd, and private Jas. R. Wiley was discharged upon surgeon's
certificate on the 7th of February.

On the 27th of March, corporal R. D. Weatherly was promoted to
sergeant-major of the regiment, and private William C. Story was
appointed corporal in his stead.

On the 23d of April, we received orders to return to North Carolina.
We left Coosawhatchie the same day, arrived at Charleston, S.C., the
following day, and on the 25th reached Wilmington, N.C. We remained
in camp near Wilmington until the 5th of May, when we moved to
Magnolia. Remaining here a few days, we were moved to Goldsboro; from
here we were ordered to our old tramping-grounds near Kinston, where
we arrived on the 16th. Meanwhile, a detachment of the enemy from
Newberne, on a raiding expedition, had encountered General Ransom's
brigade near Gum Swamp. General Ransom undertook to drive them within
their lines, and made a feint upon Newberne. We formed a portion of
the troops engaged in this expedition, and succeeded in driving the
enemy within their lines, and destroying the block-houses they had
made for their defence. We gained nothing by this tramping, except a
few cases of malarial fever, occasioned by our swamp-wading. With the
exception of an occasional skirmish with the enemy's cavalry on
Batchelor's Creek, there is nothing worthy of mention during our
encampment in the vicinity of Kinston. We remained here until the 5th
of June, when once more we received orders to proceed to Virginia.


In the latter part of April, 1863, the Army of the Potomac, under the
command of Major-General Hooker, occupied its position in front of
Fredericksburg. Here he constructed a formidable line of earthworks;
from which secure position, he purposed to move on General Lee's
flank. With this view, he crossed the Rappahannock and took position
at Chancellorsville.

Meanwhile, General Lee, watching him, was entrenched on the line of
hills south of the Rappahannock, near Fredericksburg.

On the 2d of May, these two confronting armies met each other, and
commenced the memorable engagements of Chancellorsville. "On this
field the star of Confederate destiny reached its zenith, when the
immortal Jackson fell wounded at the head of his victorious troops; it
began to set on the 10th of May, when Jackson was no more."

General Lee, deeming the true policy now to take the aggressive, at
once set to work to manoeuver so as to draw Hooker's army from
Fredericksburg, and remove hostilities beyond the Potomac.

In pursuance of this design, our army--now reorganized into three
corps, respectively commanded by Lieutenant-Generals Longstreet,
Ewell, and A. P. Hill--early in June moved northward, with the view of
marching into Maryland and Pennsylvania. On our arrival at Richmond,
on the 6th of June, we were assigned to Heth's division of A. P.
Hill's corps--which corps still occupied the lines in front of
Fredericksburg, the corps of Ewell and Longstreet having advanced as
far as Culpepper Court-House. On the night of the 13th, Hooker retired
from his position, and on the 14th the corps of A. P. Hill left for
the valley. At the urgent request of General Elzey, in command at
Richmond, our brigade (Cooke's) was retained there, and Davis'
Mississippi brigade was assigned to Heth's division in our stead;
through which circumstance, we failed to participate in the
Pennsylvania campaign and to share in the fatal battle of Gettysburg.

On the 9th of June we were sent to the South Anna bridge, on the
Virginia Central road, to repel a threatened attack from the enemy's
cavalry. Remaining here until the 11th, we returned to Richmond, and
were ordered to Chapin's Bluff, on the James. John F. McQuiston joined
the company here. We remained at the Bluff only a few days, when we
were again returned to Richmond, and camped in the vicinity until the
8th of July. On the 11th, we moved to Taylorsville, on the R. & F.R.R.
Remaining here until the 1st of August, we moved to Fredericksburg,
and picketed the various fords on the Rappahannock. On the 28th, we
retraced our steps to Taylorsville, went into camp in pine forest near
the railroad, and passed the time quietly until the 24th of September.

On the 13th of July, the shattered remnant of our army recrossed the
Potomac into Virginia. General Meade, now in command of the Federal
troops, advanced east of the mountains, and General Lee, so as to
confront him, moved his army, and established a line of defence along
the Rapidan River. In this position the two armies remained, in
comparative quiet, about two months. Early in October, General Lee,
with Ewell's and Hill's corps, crossed the Rapidan to attack Meade's
flank, or force him to retire from his position.

The Grays, having been encamped at Gordonsville since the 24th of
September, were ordered to rejoin their corps, and on the 9th of
October we left Gordonsville, marching _via_ Madison Court-House,
where we camped on the 10th. On Sunday morning (11th), we reached
Culpepper Court-House. Just before our arrival it was ascertained that
Meade was on the farther side of the Rappahannock River, which would
render it necessary for our troops to make another flank movement. On
Monday, the 12th, therefore, we started for Warrenton. Passing near
Salem, we camped that night at Amisville. The next day, passing
Warrenton Springs, we reached Warrenton. On the morning of the 14th,
we resumed our march, and about ten o'clock we came upon a little
place called Grinage. Here we found the deserted camp of the enemy.
Their camp-fires were still burning, many articles of camp equipage
were lying around, everything showing that a panic had seized them and
that their retreat was hasty and terrified. We hastened on in pursuit,
at a rapid rate, capturing their stragglers at every turn. At the same
time, we knew that Ewell was driving another corps of the enemy on our
right up the Orange & Alexandria Railroad. Our men were in the highest
spirits, confident not only of victory, but of destroying or capturing
everything in front of us. We knew the river in their rear was
swollen, and possibly the bridges gone, and there would be no outlet
for them. Governor Vance's faithful ship, the "Advance," had come in
"heavily laden," and we were proudly and splendidly dressed in some of
the gray cloth of its cargo, which, but a few days before, we had
received; our hopes were buoyant, our rations plentiful, and it is
easy to imagine with what pace we kept up the pursuit. Reasonable
expectations doomed to a speedy and bitter disappointment!

After keeping up the pursuit at this rapid rate for some three hours
along the main road leading to Bristoe station, our brigade filed out
into the woods upon our right when we arrived within a short distance
of the station. Cooke's brigade formed the advance of the pursuing
column, Kirkland's brigade followed, then came the remainder of A. P.
Hill's corps. At the time we filed to our right in the woods,
Kirkland's brigade moved up and filed off to the left of the road; the
rest of our corps was halted and _remained_ in the road in the rear.
Our brigade (Cooke's) was immediately thrown into line of battle, the
46th N.C. regiment on the extreme right, the 15th N.C. next, the 27th
N.C. next, and the 48th N.C. next, with their left resting upon the
main road. In this position we were ordered to move forward. Advancing
some five hundred yards through a dense forest of pines, we were halted
near a small stream in an open field. About 800 yards in our front and
to our left upon a hill, we could see several brigades of the enemy;
while in the road in their front a large wagon train was hurriedly
moving off. About this time a battery of guns concealed in the woods
opened a heavy fire upon our right flank, seemingly to cover the
retreat of their wagon train. Just then a courier from Gen. Heth handed
to Gen. Cooke orders from Gen. Hill to advance; in the meanwhile a
message was received from Col. Hall, commanding our right flank,
informing Gen. Cooke that the enemy had driven in his skirmishers and
was pressing him on his flank. Thereupon Cooke sent Heth's courier back
to him with the information that the enemy were in force upon his
right, and before he could advance that his flank must be protected.
The courier from Gen. Heth returned a second time with orders to
advance, and while delivering the orders one of Gen. Lee's
staff-officers rode up, and being informed of our situation, said to
Cooke that _he_ would go to Gen. Hill for him. Before he had time to
reach Gen. Hill, a courier arrived _direct_ from Hill to Gen. Cooke
with orders to _advance at once_. Cooke replied, "I will do so, and if
I am flanked I will face about and cut my way out," and immediately
gave the command "forward!" Advancing at a quick step up a slight
elevation we came in full view of the enemy. Simultaneous with our
advance five pieces of our artillery, posted in the main road upon our
left, opened fire on the enemy in sight, who retired apparently in

About 800 yards in the valley in our front ran the track of the Orange
& Alexandria Railroad. The road here formed an embankment from six to
eight feet high, extending far enough to overlap our brigade and a
portion of Kirkland's on our left. The space between us and the
railroad was a barren, open field, descending with a gradual declivity
to the railroad embankment. Across and beyond the railroad about 300
yards, upon a considerable elevation, were extensive woods and
thickets; here the enemy had posted their artillery. In front of
these woods, and on the face of the hill descending to the railroad
embankment, was posted what we then supposed was the enemy's skirmish
line, but which proved to be a decoy, for the troops which had retired
at the firing of our artillery in the road, and a large body of those
who had been retreating before Ewell, had stretched themselves behind
the railroad embankment, forming their real line of battle, which
consisted of the entire second corps and one division of the 5th corps
of Meade's army.

We had advanced rapidly some 25 yards when our regiment, being
slightly in advance, was halted until the regiments upon our right and
left came up. Here we discovered for the first time the real position
of the enemy behind the railroad embankment. We were going down the
hill; they, secure behind the bank, had only to lie down on the slope,
rest their muskets on the track of the railroad and sweep the open
field as we attacked. The attack was made.

    "Not tho' the soldier knew,
    Some one had blundered:
    Their's not to make reply,
    Their's not to reason why,
    Their's but to do and die;
    Into the Valley of Death,
    Into the mouth of Hell,
    Stormed at with shot and shell,
    Marched the six hundred."


We had scarcely emerged from the woods and began to advance down the
hill, when Gen. Cooke, in command of the brigade, was shot and fell
from his horse severely wounded. Col. Gilmer, in command of our
regiment, was shot down about the same moment. The command of the
brigade now devolved upon Col. Hall, of the 46th N.C. regiment, and
the command of our regiment fell upon Lieut.-Col. Whitfield. We were
now suffering from the terrific fire of the enemy's artillery posted
in the thickets on the elevation beyond the railroad, and from the
murderous fire of their infantry in safe position behind the
embankment. Col. Whitfield seeing that our entire force would soon be
annihilated by the concentrated fire of the enemy, reported to Col.
Hall that the brigade must either retreat or make a charge. Col. Hall
thought a charge was the best to be done, and Col. Whitfield gave the
order to advance. In a moment we were double-quicking down the hill,
our men falling at every step. When we came to within a few yards of
the railroad, the enemy rose up from behind the embankment and poured
a volley into our ranks which almost swept the remnant of us out of
existence. At this juncture some of our company sought shelter in a
little shanty on our left, where they were afterwards captured by the
enemy. Col. Whitfield was now shot down, and Major Webb assumed the
command. In our perilous condition but two courses were open, either
to surrender or to take our chance in a retreat up the hill, the
descent of which had been so disastrous. Major Webb chose the latter
and gave the order to fall back.

During our advance our colors were cut down three times. The third
time they were caught up by corporal William C. Story, of the Grays,
on the color-guard, and carried by him during the rest of the fight.
For his gallantry upon this occasion he was complimented in special
orders, and was afterwards appointed ensign of the regiment, with the
rank of lieutenant. The cause of the war may be forgotten, but the
achievements of each soldier are the common property and common glory
of the country, and are imperishable. The calm and cool courage
displayed by this young lad of Guilford, who bore so well the brunt of
this hard-fought field is worthy of the heroes who fell at Culloden.
He bore the flag of his country's trust until the surrender. He
returned to his home broken down in health, and in a few months
surrendered to his last enemy--Death! In the quiet church yard at
Tabernacle, in the southeastern part of Guilford, Story sleeps near
those who loved him. In this consecrated spot may memory come to
embalm his name, and love bedew with her fondest tears the turf which
wraps his clay.

We continued to fall back, under a continuous deadly fire, until we
had passed the brow of the hill, and were under shelter.

    "They that had fought so well
    Came back from the mouth of Hell--
      All that was left of them."

During the night the enemy continued their retreat toward Centreville.
We, with litters and canteens of water, repaired to the battle-field
to care for our wounded, where "Death wagged his slim jaws gleefully
over his feast," and gorged himself with many more victims ere the
dawn of the 15th.

The Grays went into this battle with three commissioned officers, four
Sergeants, four Corporals, and fifty-two privates.

Killed: First Lieutenant John H. McKnight; privates John Cannady,
Henry Crider, and John T. Sockwell were killed on the field.

Wounded: Capt. John A. Sloan, Corporal C. W. Stratford, Sergeant Chas.
A. Campbell; privates Emsley F. Shuler, W. Burnsides, Henry G. Coble,
Lewis N. Isley, Wm. D. Dennis, L. L. Lineberry, J. W. McDowell, Robt.
B. McLean, William May, Cyrus Crowson, A. L. Orrell, Rufus B. Gibson,
Samuel Gray, R. S. Smith, W. M. Summers, were wounded. Sergeant E. M.
Crowson was wounded, taken prisoner, and died of his wounds at Point
Lookout, Jan. 23, 1864. Private H. Rufus Forbis died of his wounds at
Richmond, Oct. 27, 1863. Joseph E. Rankin died of wounds, October 24.
W. F. Hunter died of his wounds, Nov. 7, and John W. McNairy lost a

Prisoners: Sergeant W. U. Steiner (wounded and captured); privates H.
M. Boon, Paul Crutchfield, Jno. Coltrain, Geo. W. Lemons, James M.
Marsh, James A. Orrell, Wilbur F. Owen, Jas. R. Pearce, Andrew L.
Stanley, Paisley Sheppard, T. M. Woodburn, R. B. Worrell, Geo. H.
Woolen, Thos. R. Greeson, and Jas. L. Wilson were captured and carried
to Point Lookout.

Walter Greene, who was detached as courier to Gen. Cooke, was shot
from his horse, and severely but not seriously wounded.

Sergeant-Major Robert D. Weatherly was mortally wounded, and died of
his wounds in Richmond, October 24, 1863. He served in the ranks of
the Grays from their organization as private and corporal, until the
21st of March, when he received the appointment of Sergeant-Major of
our regiment. Bob was a noble boy, and bravest of the brave. Fear was
no word in his vocabulary. He was always at his post, and though
slight in stature, his form was ever seen in the thickest of the
fight. His remains were carried to Greensboro, and buried in the
Presbyterian church-yard.

John H. McKnight, at the outbreak of the war, was quietly pursuing his
studies at Trinity College. When we received our orders to go to Fort
Macon, he left his books and joined his company at the depot, on the
night of the 19th of April, 1861, and served as private, corporal, and
sergeant until September 17th, when he was promoted to 1st Lieutenant.
He fell at Bristoe mortally wounded, foremost in the charge; was left
on the field, and captured by the enemy. On the morning of the 15th,
we found his body in the thicket beyond the railroad, where the enemy
had left him to die. Here we buried him. His remains were afterwards
removed, and interred in the cemetery at Greensboro.

These two noble boys sleep among their loved ones, where, each
returning spring, loving hands may plant the flowers which speak of
the resurrection of the true and just, and of the land where eternal
summer reigns.

    "May young April o'er their lowly mounds
    Shake the violets from her hair,
    And glorious June with fervid kiss
    Ever bid the roses blossom there."

A worse-managed affair than this fight at Bristoe Station did not take
place during the war. With the rest of our corps in the rear, at a
moment's call, Cooke's and Kirkland's North Carolina brigades were
made to fight this battle alone. President Davis characterized it "as
a rash and ill-conducted affair." Col. Taylor says that "too few of
our corps was engaged; it was unpardonable mismanagement, and there
was no earthly excuse for it." Gen. Lee said to the officer who
essayed to explain to him this occurrence: "Bury your _poor dead_,
and say nothing more about it."

This terminated Gen. Lee's attempt to bring on a pitched battle with
Gen. Meade.

On the following day we were busy burying our dead. Our wounded were
all cared for, and sent off in ambulances and wagons. On the 16th, we
were employed in destroying the railroad track, which we did most
effectually, as far down as Rappahannock Station. On the 19th, we
crossed the Rappahannock River, went into camp, and remained until the
6th of November.

On the 7th, our forces met with another surprise at Kelley's Ford, on
the Rappahannock River, which resulted in the loss of several hundred
of our men and some few pieces of artillery. The loss of this position
made it necessary to abandon the design of our making an attack, and
on the 9th we were withdrawn to near Culpepper Court-House; at night
we fell back across Robertson River. This position not being regarded
as favorable, we returned to the south side of the Rapidan on the
following night. We picketed along this river, above Rapidan Station,
until the 26th of November.

At this time, the army under Gen. Meade crossed the Rapidan, and we
were busy getting ready for a counter-move, as he was supposed to be
moving down the river. At the dawn of day, on the 27th, we were on our
way to meet Meade's army. The weather was intensely cold, and our men
suffered greatly.

We proceeded to advance towards Fredericksburg. In the evening we met
the enemy, and had quite a skirmish, losing several men from the
regiment. On Saturday, a position was selected on the line of Mine
Run, and in a short while we were strongly entrenched, and anxious for
the enemy to attack us. On Monday, the 30th, the enemy being in our
immediate front, we certainly expected an attack. They were found to
be busily entrenching, also, and Tuesday passed without any

As Gen. Meade seemed reluctant to bring on an engagement, Gen. Lee
determined to assail him; consequently, during the night, he made
necessary arrangements for a grand battle. When dawn broke over the
hills on the morning of the 2d of December, Meade's camps were found
deserted, and his army fast making their way back to the river. We
immediately made pursuit, but he had too much the start and reached
the north side of the Rapidan before we could overtake him. Both
armies then retired to their original positions on the Rapidan. We
returned to our winter quarters which we had prepared, about 3-1/2
miles south-east from Orange C.H. We were then, in turn, employed
in picketing along the Rapidan until the 4th of February, when we
were relieved by Kirkland's North Carolina brigade, and we again
sought shelter in our log cabins.


On the 18th of December, Lieutenant Frank A. Hanner was promoted to
1st Lieutenant, vice Lieutenant McKnight killed. Orderly Sergeant
Chas. A. Campbell to 2d Lieutenant, Jr.; Sergeant William M. Paisley
was appointed Orderly Sergeant; Corporal C. W. Stratford, Sergeant,
and privates Alfred W. Klutts and Rufus B. Gibson were promoted to

During the month of December, under special orders No. 72, Lee's
headquarters, a general court martial was convened for our (Heth's)
division. Capt. J. A. Sloan was detailed as judge-advocate; Col. R.
Mayo, of the 47th Virginia regiment, as president, and Sergeant
William U. Steiner, of the Grays, appointed recorder. With the
exception of a temporary suspension in February and again in March, to
accompany our several commands on expeditions made at those times, the
court was in regular session at Orange Court-House. In the meanwhile
Lieutenant Banner was in command of the Grays.

On the 8th of January, private Chas. W. Westbrooks, our company
chaplain, and known as our "fighting parson," was discharged by order
of the Secretary of War, and received an appointment as regular
chaplain in the army. Charlie preached as he shot without fear and to
the mark.

On the 16th of January, private Henry G. Kellogg, at home on surgeon's
certificate, was permanently detailed in the commissary department at
Salisbury, North Carolina.

On the 18th of February, W. H. Donnell joined the company.

On the 20th, Corporal Thomas J. Rhodes was promoted to Sergeant, and
private Richard S. Smith was appointed Corporal.

On the 1st of March, Preston P. Dick joined the company. At the same
time private Henry W. Ayer, who joined the Grays in May, 1863, was
transferred to company "C," 48th N.C. regiment.

On the 12th, H. Smiley Forbis died of disease at hospital in
Lynchburg, Va.

On the 31st, private A. Laffayette Orrell was transferred to the C.S.
Navy, "or words to that effect."

On the 13th of April, private Pleasant Ricks died in camp of typhoid

On the 25th, E. Tonkey Sharpe was detached, by order of Gen. Heth, for
duty with the provost guard.

On our return from the Mine Run "freeze-out," we planned, built, and
improved our winter quarters, and soon had a city of log cabins. It
was now our turn to watch the wary "yank" on the borders of the
Rapidan, and we picketed up and down the stream in the cold and ice
until early in February, when Kirkland's N.C. brigade was sent to our

While we were in camp near Orange Court-House in December, 1863, the
good mothers, wives, and daughters of Virginia, with the ready hands
and loving hearts that had always characterized them from the
beginning to the end of the fearful struggle, bethought themselves to
give Lee's army a Christmas dinner. Every pantry, turkey-roost, and
hog-pen in the dear old State was called upon to furnish its quota for
the feast. Our infinitesimal ration dimmed with the prospect, and we
looked forward to that day, which ever stirs all the better and
sweeter impulses of our humanity, with longing desires. In our log
cabins we lay upon our hard beds and dreamed of its past celebrations,
of its anthems and its carols; we thought of its bays and its wreaths
of evergreen; its sprigs of holly in the parlor, and the sacred
immortelles around the portraits of the lost ones; its gift-giving and
all those interchanges of tokens that make friendship sweet; its
suppressions of self; its lessons of generosity, and its going out to
others. Need you wonder, under these circumstances, that Lee's hungry
rebels were all anticipation. The day was ushered in with a snow
storm, but, nothing daunted, our brigade wagon was soon on its way
to the depot to receive our share of the feast; but, unfortunately,
these same pantrys, turkey-roosts, and hog-pens had been invaded so
often before that our part of the grand dinner assumed microscopic
proportions, and the wagon returned with about a half-bushel measure
of dissected gobblers--our Christmas dinner!

    "O, ever thus, from childhood's hour"--

Early in February we received a most delightful and interesting visit
from Greensboro's eminent divine, Rev. J. Henry Smith, who preached
for as in the large log tabernacle erected by the boys for divine
service. During his visit the cry of the "Philistines be upon you"
from the other side of the river was heard, and we were ordered out to
resist the threatened attack. The parson exhibited an eagerness to
become a "soldier of Lee" for the occasion. After spending two days
and nights of bitter cold weather on the banks of the Rapidan, the
enemy making no further demonstrations, we were returned to our

On the 26th of February, three formidable columns of cavalry, under
the command respectively of Generals Kilpatrick, Custer, and Col.
Dahlgren, proceeded by different routes towards Richmond to surprise
and, if possible, capture the city; and, if successful, to sack and
burn the city, pillage the buildings, and kill "old Jeff Davis and his
cabinet." In the meanwhile two corps of the enemy crossed the river
and proceeded to Madison Court-House; their object being, by a feint,
to cover their cavalry demonstration upon Richmond. Two days later
another army corps left for Madison, and our corps (Hill's) was
ordered to follow them. We left our camp before day on the morning of
March 1st and reached Madison late in the evening, after a long and
weary march in the rain and mud. On our arrival we found that the
enemy had retired, and were returning to their former position on the
Rapidan. The weather turned very cold during the night, and the next
morning we retraced our steps through snow and ice to our camp, the
men suffering greatly from fatigue and cold. We remained quietly in
our winter quarters until the 4th of May.

Sometime in March, 1864, Major-General Ulysses S. Grant was appointed
Lieutenant-General and assumed command of the armies of the United
States. In April he made his headquarters at Culpepper Court-House, and
took personal command of the army of the Potomac. During the months of
March and April re-enforcements were gathered from the four quarters
of the globe and sent to this army.


On the 1st day of May, the official return of the Army of the Potomac
showed, present for duty, one hundred and forty-one thousand one
hundred and sixty men, of all arms. General Lee had, in round numbers,
sixty-four thousand men.

I give the relative strength of the two armies, in order that the
reader may have a proper appreciation of the difficulties which beset
our army in thwarting the designs of our wily adversary, in the
campaign we were now just entering. That the brilliant genius of our
immortal Lee, made amends for paucity in numbers, and proved more than
a match for brutal force, the bloody field extending from the
Wilderness to the James River will attest.

On the 3d of May, our army held the south bank of the Rapidan River.
Its right rested near the mouth of Mine Run; its left extended as far
as Liberty Mills, on the road to Gordonsville. Grant, with his main
body encamped in Culpepper County, occupied the north hank of the
Rapidan. On the 4th of May, Grant crossed his forces to the south
side, and began his advance into the "Wilderness."

Running eastwardly to Fredericksburg, from Orange Court-House, are two
parallel roads; the one nearest the river is called the "Stone
Turnpike," and the other the "Plank-Road."

As soon as Grant's movements were known, our army was put in motion.
On the morning of the 4th, our division (Heth's) and Wilcox's, of A.
P. Hill's corps, moved eastwardly along the "Plank-Road." Simultaneously
Ewell's corps moved on the stone turnpike. That night we bivouacked at
Verdiersville, near where we fought the battle of Mine Run.

The "Wilderness" is an almost impenetrable thicket of undergrowth; and
our sagacious Lee resolved to fight Grant in these pathless woods,
where their artillery would be least available, and where their
massive columns would be most embarrassed in their movements.

On the morning of the 5th, we resumed our march, with Kirkland's
brigade, of our division, in front. About one o'clock, our
advance-guard came upon a body of the enemy, and a spirited musketry
fire was opened in our front. Kirkland's brigade at once deployed on
both sides of the "Plank-Road," and Cooke's brigade was thrown into
line of battle with our regiment (27th), on the left of the road.
About three o'clock, our skirmishers were driven in by a massive
column of the enemy, who advanced firing rapidly. Thus commenced the
"Wilderness" fight; and the bloody contest continued until near

This stubborn and heroic resistance was made by the divisions of
Heth's and Wilcox's, fifteen thousand strong, against the repeated
assaults of four divisions of Hancock's and one division of Sedgwick's
corps, numbering about forty-five thousand men. After dark, we were
relieved by Kirkland's brigade. As we were retiring from our position,
we got into a country-road, parallel to the "Plank-Road," and had
proceeded but a short distance, when my attention was directed to a
similar body of troops, marching quietly in the road with us; the
night was very dark, and it was difficult to distinguish friend from
foe. I felt some anxiety, as they seemed to possess uniform knapsacks
and were of better appearance than our men, to know who they were. I
therefore approached their column, and found to my utter astonishment
that they were "blue-coats." I immediately rushed to Col. Whitfield,
and informed him of our situation. He replied, "Impossible!" On close
inspection, he found that they were really Federal troops. He drew his
pistol, and, in a surprised and excited manner, called out: "Yes, they
are Yankees! Shoot them, boys! Shoot them!" Some few guns were fired;
but as the surprise was so great both upon our part and that of our
"Yankee brethren," a hasty retreat was made on both sides, and each
soon lost the other in the darkness. They were evidently on the wrong
road "to get out of the Wilderness."

We soon reached the "Plank-Road," and were marched to the rear about
one and a-half miles to a ridge, upon which our line was established.
Our men began at once to fortify; and while we had no implements for
the purpose, we succeeded, by the aid of our bayonets and tin-cups, to
build what proved to be on the following day a great protection.

During the progress of the battle on the 5th, there came a lull in the
firing and an almost deathlike stillness prevailed, as though the god
of war had stopped a minute to take a long breath, and pull himself
together for a fresh start. Presently, a sharp, quick report of a
rifle from the other side broke the stillness. Simultaneously with the
report, private Wash Williams was struck and painfully wounded. He
uttered a long, loud yell, which seemed to reverberate up and down the
lines for at least a mile. Almost immediately afterwards, a gun was
fired from our side, and some one on the Yankee line mimicked the cry
of Williams perfectly. This incident created general laughter on both
sides, thus giving the opposing forces an idea of each other's
position, and the contest opened in good earnest.

Our casualties in this, the first of the series of battles of this
campaign, were as follows: Privates Sam'l F. McLean and Louis
Lineberry were killed. Sergeant C. W. Stratford, Corporal A. W.
Klutts, privates Frank G. Chilcutt, William Horney, R. B. Tate, Jas.
M. Hardin, Wash. Williams, Thos. R. Greeson, Sam'l Hiatt, John R.
Siler, and Jas. L. Wilson were wounded. Chilcutt lost an arm, Horney
lost a leg, and R. B. Tate died of his wounds in July, 1864.


At dawn on the morning of the 6th the enemy, having been re-enforced
by the 9th army corps under Gen. Burnside, and a fresh division
commanded by Wadsworth, advanced.

The intervening space between the position now held by our brigade,
and the point at which we fought on the 5th, was occupied by our
(Hill's) corps camped in irregular order, and in no condition for an
assault; consequently, when the enemy made their advance and attacked,
these forces were thrown into confusion and driven back to the line
where our brigade had formed the night previous. After a severe
contest a portion of Heth's and Wilcox's divisions were overpowered
and forced to fall back; our brigade, under protection of our hastily
constructed earthworks, held its position. The condition of affairs
was now assuming a very critical phase, when Kershaw's brigade of
South Carolinians, of Longstreet's corps, arrived upon the scene and
for a short while arrested their further advance. The repulsed
portions of our divisions were in considerable disorder, and the
battle began to rage with intense fury.

General Lee, anxious and appreciating the impending crisis, rode up
with hat in hand, dashed among the men, and calling upon them to
rally, said he would lead the charge. The reins of his horse were
seized by the men and he was told he must go "to the rear," or they
would not go forward. Being evidently touched at this manifestation of
anxiety upon the part of his men the great, grand, and towering old
hero waved his hand and retired. In a few moments Anderson's gallant
Texas boys came up at a double-quick, deployed into line of battle,
and, with Longstreet at their head, went forward with a yell. Major
Webb, while standing on our works cheering, was severely wounded and
retired to the rear. In a short while the ground lost by our troops
was recovered, and the enemy forced back to the position originally
held by them. General Longstreet now took the defensive, and about
mid-day made an attack on their rear and left flank. The assault
resulted in their utter rout, and they were forced back some distance
in rear of the lines occupied by them on the 5th. So far, this
movement was a complete success, and Longstreet began preparations to
follow up his advantages with a flank movement by the Brock road.

While advancing at the head of Gen. Jenkins' brigade, a portion of his
flanking column, which had continued through the woods in the former
charge, mistaking the brigade for the enemy fired into them, killing
Gen. Jenkins, and seriously wounding Gen. Longstreet. This unfortunate
and strange fatality checked our forward movement, and afforded the
enemy time and opportunity to rally and reform behind their

At dark we began to move slowly to the right, and after we had
proceeded about one mile a rebel yell, as if a rushing mighty wind,
rolled down upon us from the right of our lines. Our army now was in a
continuous line of battle, and the cheering was taken up spontaneously
by brigade after brigade until it swelled into one exulting roar of
defiance. At first it seemed like the soft murmuring of the wind in
the tree tops, and as it came nearer it made one vast tempest of
sound, and thus it swayed back and forth for some time. Its effect was
tragic in the extreme, and I readily recall the sensation it produced
upon all at the time. The enemy's pickets thought we were making a
grand charge and fled so precipitately to their main line that, as the
prisoners we captured the next day informed us, they were fired into
by their own men and many of them killed.

On the morning of the 7th an advance was made and Grant was found to
have retired from his line of works on his right. We had several
skirmishes, and desultory firing continued during the day.

He now attempted by a flank movement to secure possession of
Spottsylvania Court-House, and Warren's corps, of his advance guard,
marched out of the Wilderness by the Brock road. On his arrival at the
Po River, on the following day, he found in his path, ready to dispute
his passage, Gen. R. H. Anderson's division of Longstreet's corps.
Each army, now forming on its advance guard as a nucleus, swung round,
and on the 9th confronted each other in line of battle.

On our march on the 8th we were interrupted by several skirmishes, and
were frequently shelled by the enemy. In the evening we reached
Spottsylvania Court-House, and were placed in line, without regard to
alignment, a short distance to the left of the court-house building,
where we at once proceeded to fortify. We were moved afterwards to
different parts of the lines, but finally took our position not far
from where we first halted.


On the 10th Barlow's division made an attack upon our left and
obtained temporary possession of a portion of Ewell's line. Gen. Lee
said that these lines must be re-established, if he had to attend to
it in person. Our (Heth's) division was called upon to do the work. We
received our orders and were soon in readiness. Advancing cautiously
for some little time, we came upon the enemy about one mile this side
of a branch of the Po, we deployed into line and began to push them
back. They finally halted in some earth-works, freshly thrown up, in
front of Mrs. Graves' house, in front of which was a large open field.
As soon as we got into the road running parallel to these works, we
were halted and reformed, and, after some little delay, we were
ordered to charge their works and drive them away. We charged across
the open field under a heavy fire of artillery from their batteries on
the hills beyond the little stream, which ran a short distance in the
rear of their earth-works. Before we reached the works they, deeming
"prudence the better part of valor," fled and made good their retreat,
leaving behind them one piece of artillery, their dead and wounded,
and several prisoners. We remained several hours at their works under
a heavy shelling; some few of the shells exploding in our ranks. Gen.
Cooke was slightly wounded in the charge, and Ensign W. C. Story,
after we reached the works. We were finally withdrawn and marched back
to our position on the main lines, after we had recovered the lost
ground and forced the enemy to relinquish their temporary advantage.
The 11th was passed in comparative quiet, with the exception of our
usual salutation from the enemy's batteries. They made daily practice
on our works, and endeavored to batter down and destroy the buildings
in the village. They appeared to have a special spite at the little
brick church immediately in rear of our regiment, occupied by our
surgeon (Dr. Hunt) as a _dispensary_. "Gwin" had hardly "opened
up" when a wicked shell came thundering through the gable, and he
concluded to vacate, which he did in considerable disorder. When we
quit our lines the little church was sadly in need of a contribution

During the night of the 11th the enemy, under the cover of the dense
woods, advanced without discovery, and massed a large force in Ewell's
front at the point known as the "salient," which was occupied by Gen.
Edward Johnson's division. On the next morning at daylight these
troops vigorously attacked and overran this portion of our lines and
captured most of the division, including its commander, who was
quietly enjoying his breakfast.

General Lee at once hurried troops from our right and left, and made
dispositions to dispute their further progress. As Harris' Mississippi
brigade was coming up at double quick, Gen. Lee, already in a very
exposed position, now joined them and started to the front with them.
The minies were flying fast and thick, and shot and shell ploughing
the ground and bursting in the air. As they neared the lines a
round-shot struck immediately in front of the grand old chieftain, and
caused him to halt and take breath. The officers and men now plead and
insisted that he should retire from this exposed position. He, in his
calm manner, his feelings exhibiting a purity and nobleness of heart
never witnessed in any hero of ancient or modern time, replied: "If
you will promise to drive _those people_ from our works I will go
back." The brigade quickly shouted the promise, and in a moment
commenced the most terrific musketry-fire that took place during the

    "From the side of the salient in the possession of the Federals,
    and the new line forming the base of the triangle occupied by the
    Confederates, poured forth, from continuous lines of hissing fire,
    an incessant hail of deadly missiles. No living man nor thing
    could stand within the doomed space embraced within those angry
    lines; even large trees were felled, their trunks cut in twain by
    the bullets of small arms. Never did the troops on either side
    display greater valor and determination. After several
    hand-to-hand conflicts, while we failed to dislodge the enemy, the
    assault which threatened such serious consequences was checked,
    and the result of the advantage to the enemy was limited to the
    possession of the narrow space of the salient and the capture of
    Johnson's division. The loss of this fine body of troops was
    seriously felt by Gen. Lee, and, though his army was sadly reduced
    by this and a week's incessant fighting, his lines, thus forcibly
    rectified, proved thereafter impregnable."

While this desperate attack was going on, our (Heth's) division and
Mahone's were moved to the left near the Fredericksburg road, to make
a feint and create a diversion. We leaped over our works, and formed
inside of them, to make the movement, and bravely did the boys move
off, although nothing is so demoralizing to troops as to leave
breastworks to do battle inside of them. We attacked the enemy, and
drove them from two lines into a third. Finding that they were getting
re-enforcements, and in a fortified position, we were gradually
withdrawn to our former position on the main lines.

Several days of comparative quiet now ensued, during which time Grant
was refurnishing his decimated brigades with heavy re-enforcements
from Washington. In his official report to the 39th Congress, he said:
"The time from the 13th to the 18th was consumed in manoeuvering and
awaiting the arrival of re-enforcements."

After covering the entire front of our army with _double_ lines, he
still had a large reserve force with which to extend his flank and
compel a corresponding move upon our part, in order to keep between him
and Richmond.

On the 18th, Gen. Grant made his final and desperate attack, by
hurling division after division against our lines. He commenced the
attack in the morning, and soon the battle became continuous along the
lines, and raged with the utmost fury and desperation. The cannon's
shot and shell seemed winged with impetuous rage, and with hissing red
flame bellowed through the air and over hill and plain, withering and
blasting everything in their flight. War had now indeed stalked forth
unmasked from his infernal den. In the smoke and carnage, Grant drove
his troops mercilessly up to the slaughter, but it produced no
impression, and the hopeless task was relinquished.

We had now completed twelve days of battle at Spottsylvania, and at no
time, day or night, did the firing on the lines entirely cease.


General Grant, giving up all hope of succeeding in his plans by direct
assault, on the night of the 20th began a flank movement in the
direction of Bowling Green, hoping thereby to interpose between our
army and the long-coveted Richmond. On the 21st, Wright's corps began
the initiative and moved southward.

To counteract and defeat this new purpose, General Lee, at midnight,
dispatched Longstreet's corps on the road leading to Hanover Junction.
On the day and night of the 21st, Ewell's and Hill's (our) corps
marched for the same point.

The twelve long days and nights, in the trenches at Spottsylvania, of
weary watching and desperate fighting, was telling on our men, and
nothing but the indomitable courage and hope of success, which at all
times and under all circumstances characterized the starved and ragged
Confederates, sustained them. They placed every confidence in their
great and good leader, and looked forward to the time when the
sunlight of this hope, with its golden radiance, would remove the veil
and permit them to look out on the long and lovely paths that wind,
amid beauty, to the far-off but glittering temples of their dreams,
and find them realities.

    "What can we not endure,
    When pains are lessened by the hope of cure?"

During the day and the night of the 22d, we continued our toilsome

On these long marches, to prevent straggling, we are frequently halted
for a rest, and this opportunity is taken by those who have fallen
back to catch up with their commands. Any one passing through the
troops at this time, be he officer or private, had to run the gauntlet
of the gibes and witticisms of the men. On one occasion, while thus
resting, a very tall, lean, lank soldier of the 5th "Georgy Regiment,"
appeared in the road, dragging along his weary length. His long black
tousled hair hung in uncombed ringlets from the holes in his rimless
hat; his coat or jacket, a very scant pattern of gray jeans, seemed to
be widely at variance with his copperas-colored breeches, as the
leather strings attached to them by thorns, to serve as "gallasses,"
failed to effect a compromise between the two; the pants, from his
oft-repeated restings, had been badly attacked and routed in the rear,
and, from long use, "swunk up" in apparent fright from his sockless
pedal extremities, whose coverings of untanned leather were held
together by a withe as a shoe-string. In form and stature, he was
modeled strictly after the heron. His avoirdupois gave evidence of
unswerving observance of forty days' Lenten season, and that in soul
and body he had, and was now, wrestling with that plague incident and
concomitant to the experience of every soldier, called the "dia-ree."

As he approached near where our regimental band was seated, at the head
of the regiment, he appeared to halt from sheer exhaustion, and, as he
did so, he came to an order and leaned in rest upon his gun. Near him
stood, leaning on his drum, the tall bass-drum beater (Bill Burroughs)
of the band. Bill was a fellow of "infinite jest," and possessed one of
those large souls, full of sympathy and concern for the woes of others.
He turned to this gaunt straggler, supposing him to be "somebody's
darling," and entered into conversation with him. The "poor fellow" in
detail related his hairbreadth escapes from battle, hunger, exposure,
&c. When he had scarcely told all, Bill remarked to him that he ought
to take notes for some _future historian_, and by all means to keep a
diary. He raised his head, and as his eyes dimmed with the starting
tear, now coursing down his bronzed and furrowed cheek, he replied,
"Lord! stranger, that's what ails me now, I have had _it_ nigh-on-to
four months." The generous _cords_ of Burroughs' haversack and canteen
were unloosed and their gratuitous contents speedily disappeared. The
order was now given to "fall in." The "Georgy" fellow shouldered his
gun, and Bill swung his big drum on his back. Just as they parted the
soldier extended his long bony fingers and grasped the hand of his Good
Samaritan, thanked him kindly, and, in subdued tones of feigned grief,
said: "My stranger friend, I am so much obleeged to you; can you not
further oblige me by picking a tune for a sick man on that _thare
instrument_." Thus agreeably employed our history leaves them--and we
return to the course of our story.

On the morning of the 23d we reached the North Anna River in advance
of the enemy, and about daylight crossed to the south side. Warren's
corps crossed at Jericho ford without opposition. Hancock's corps
attempted to cross lower down, at the county bridge. Our brigade
obstinately resisted them, and they did not succeed in crossing until
the 24th.

General Cooke relates an interesting incident which occurred during the
progress of Grant's army to the North Anna, as told by a prominent
citizen of Caroline County, Va., who was captured by Grant in the
march. He says: "Grant had halted at a house on the roadside with a
number of his officers around him with whom he was discussing with deep
interest the movements in progress. During the discussion Grant pulled
out his watch, and opening it, said: 'Gentlemen, if we do not hear
firing in ten minutes we will _at last_ have gotten ahead of Lee!' He
stood quietly, watch in hand, an occasional remark, only, breaking the
silence, when, scarcely five minutes having elapsed, the booming of
guns was heard in the direction of Hanover Junction. He closed his
watch and impatiently remarked, 'I'll be _damned_ if he has not beaten
us again!' And so it was, as our brigade was at the time resisting

General Lee, on the next day, did not further dispute in force the
crossing of the enemy, but formed his lines with his left resting on
Little River, and his right near the North Anna below the enemy,
covering Hanover Junction. Here he awaited attack.

Owing to our well-selected position, Grant could not get at our
flanks; and to take us by direct assault, after his bitter experience
at Spottsylvania, caused him to "pause, ponder, study, and plan."

Perceiving he had made a blunder, and that his army was in a position
of much peril, he, on the night of the 26th, recrossed to the north
side of the river, and made another _detour_ to the eastward, as far
down as the Pamunkey River.

On the 28th he crossed the Pamunkey at Hanovertown. On the 30th his
advance ran against our brigade, on the left of our lines, at Atlee's
Station, where we entertained him for some little time to his
discomfiture. The next day we had a sharp engagement near Tolopotomy
creek, and on June 1st, they attacked us in heavy force at Pole-Green
church, the skirmish continuing for some time. Our brigade and
regiment suffered considerably from their shells and sharpshooters.

Lieutenant Chas. A. Campbell was mortally wounded and was carried
to the rear, where he died the next day. Campbell was one of the
"original panel," serving as private until April, 1862, corporal
until August, when he was promoted to sergeant. He was wounded at the
battle of Sharpsburg. On his return to his command, November 1st, he
was appointed Orderly Sergeant, serving as such until the 11th of
December, when he was promoted to Junior 2d Lieutenant. With the
exception of a short furlough from camp at Orange Court-House, he was
always at his post, ready and cheerful at all times to perform his
duties. Soon after he was shot down, he was carried to the field
hospital, where he died and was buried the following day. As he passed
me on his litter, he stretched out his almost pulseless arm and
remarked, "Goodbye, Captain; if I don't come back, tell them I fell
fighting at the front."

    God's peace be with him in his rest,
    Lone dweller in the stranger's land.


On the 3d of June the two armies were brought face to face at Cold
Harbor, where but two years before "Little Mc" had struggled in vain
for the mastery.

On the night of the 2d our brigade was placed in line on the extreme
left, with our regiment upon what is known as Pharr's farm. As soon as
we were halted we began to fortify, and by early dawn had constructed
good temporary works. Owing to the dense, heavy body of woods the enemy
were enabled to make near approaches in our front, and previous to
their advance, on the following morning, we could hear distinctly the
orders given by their officers. After some little firing by their
sharpshooters, about 8 o'clock, they began to attack, and kept up their
assaults until late in the evening. Brigade after brigade was hurled
against us, until the ground in our front was literally covered with
their dead and wounded. Their assaults were repulsed along the whole
line. Finally, when the order was given to renew the attack, their men
sullenly and emphatically refused to move forward under our withering
fire. The prisoners we captured denounced and cursed Grant for this
slaughter, and dubbed him the "champion butcher."

In the evening a battery of artillery was sent to our aid. They came up
at a gallop and endeavored to take position on a slight elevation, in
the skirt of pines, immediately in rear of our regiment. Before they
had time to unlimber, every horse in the battery was shot down. The men
then endeavored to run the guns forward by hand, when nearly all the
men were killed or wounded. One gun only was gotten in position, and it
rendered but little service before it was dismantled. Having been under
constant fire, and firing rapidly all day ourselves--each man averaging
two hundred rounds of cartridges--it became necessary to replenish our
ammunition. An attempt to go to the rear, or to leave our works in any
direction, was almost certain death. Lieut.-Col. Whitfield, who was now
in command of our regiment, disliked to force a detail to go to the
wagons for ammunition, and therefore called for volunteers. A
sufficient number came forward at once, and set out on their perilous
expedition; among the number was private R. F. Hampton, of the Grays.
In due time they all returned, each bringing a supply of cartridges,
but waited some distance back of us for a lull in the firing so as to
run the gauntlet of the sharpshooters to the lines. Several were badly
wounded in making the trip, among the number private R. F. Hampton, who
had almost reached the lines when he was shot down by a sharpshooter,
mortally wounded, and afterwards died of his wounds. During the battle,
private W. J. Hunt was killed, and Dan'l. B. Coltrain and Benjamin
Burnsides severely wounded. Private Hunt, when shot, was standing near
me. We were trying to locate a sharpshooter in our front, who had
become very troublesome by the accuracy of his aim. We had been exposed
in our position but a few moments, when a minie-ball pierced his head,
scattering his brains in my face, and he sunk down lifeless at my feet.
Lieutenant-Colonel Whitfield was severely wounded in the head, and was
carried from the field. The command now devolved upon Capt. Herring,
the senior officer, who acted as Colonel, and Captain Sloan, next in
rank, as Major.

On the following morning, we found that the enemy, under cover of
darkness, had left our front; and we were moved to the right, and
placed in position immediately at Cold Harbor, with our respective
lines so near as to be able to converse with each other. We remained
here in line of battle, under constant fire; happily, our immediate
command had no serious casualties. Grant used every expedient to break
through our lines, but he had so mercilessly slaughtered and cowed his
men in his first charges at Cold Harbor, that his men refused to charge
a second time. So determined was he to clean us up, at all hazards,
that he remarked he would do so, "if it took him all summer." The
sequel proved that he did not overestimate the time, but the process
cost considerable bloodshed.

Stanton (Secretary of War) says, officially, that Grant's force, on the
1st of May, was over one hundred and twenty thousand men. Shortly
afterwards, the 9th army corps was sent to him. This army, then
aggregating over one hundred and forty thousand men, with a reserve to
draw from of one hundred and thirty thousand more, in round numbers,
was ruthlessly hurled against Lee's less than fifty thousand men. Lee
had no reserve--the cradle and the grave had long since mustered, and
our ports were closed to mercenary hirelings. Their own historians
prove and show that their "butcher" slaughtered nearly one hundred
thousand men in his "On to Richmond," from the wilds of the
"Wilderness" to the desolated fields of Cold Harbor. In other words, he
sacrificed about twice as many men as Lee had, in order to take a
position he could have taken at first without firing a gun or losing a

On the 3d of June, Lieut. Frank A. Hanner, who had been for some weeks
confined by disease in the hospital at Richmond, died. He served as
private until April, 1862; at the reorganization of the twelve-months'
troops, he was elected 2d Lieutenant; was promoted to Senior 2d,
September 17th, 1862, and again on the 15th of October, 1863, to 1st
Lieutenant. On the 1st of June, private Joel J. Thorn was appointed


The Army of the Potomac having now apparently had sufficient amusement
on this portion of its constituted "all summer route," again adopted
"Little Mc's" tactics, "sought water," and on the 12th of June began
its march towards the historic James.

On the 14th and 15th, by means of his pontoon bridges near Wilcox's
Landing, Grant crossed to the south side of the river. On the evening
of the 15th his advance made a feint demonstration against Petersburg,
and on the 16th made his attack in force. This attack was promptly met,
and successfully repulsed by our forces under Gen. Beauregard. Our
brigade, as yet, in the swamps of the Chickahominy, was almost daily
employed in skirmishes with the enemy's cavalry. On the 15th of June we
came across a large force of cavalry at Gary's farm. They had met a
small force of our cavalry and had been driving them. When we arrived
they dismounted and sent their horses to the rear, formed their lines
and showed fight. After a sharp struggle their lines gave way, and we
pursued them some distance through the woods. Their sharpshooters were
armed with seven shooters, and they used them against us on our advance
with telling effect. When they reached their horses they quickly
remounted and were soon beyond our reach. Orderly Sergeant William M.
Paisley and private Henry J. Coble were wounded.

We had advanced in line but a short distance, when Sergeant Paisley, at
the head and slightly in advance of his company, was shot by a
sharpshooter, and fell mortally wounded. He was carried from the field
and sent to the hospital in Richmond, there he suffered and lingered
until the 13th of July, when he died in the arms of his broken-hearted
father, who carried his remains to Guilford, and interred them at
Alamance church. He was among the first of Guilford's gallant boys who
went forth to do battle for truth and right. He kept his vows to his
God and his Southland sacred alike, and at his post, on the front line
in the fight, fell wounded to the death.

    "On other brows let careless fame
      Her fadeless wreath of laurel twine,
    Enough for thee--thy epitaph!
      First in the foremost line."

After this encounter we were granted a short respite until the 21st,
when our cavalry was routed by the enemy at Yellow Tavern, and our
brigade was ordered to their support. When we reached there, we found
in slowly retiring before the enemy in a dense woods. Gen. Cooke at
once ordered forward his sharpshooters, and very soon a spirited fight
began. Our regiment was thrown into line and we began to press them
back. As they had been driving our cavalry they were loth to retire,
and fought us obstinately. Cooke then ordered his whole brigade into
line. They, seeing now that they could not cope with us in fair fight,
set fire to the woods and leaves in our front, and we were forced to
advance through fire and smoke, our men suffering terribly from the
heat, the day, besides, being exceedingly hot. We had been in too many
hot places to be afraid of fire, so we made at them with a yell, and
soon had their lines broken and in rapid retreat, with our cavalry--who
had recovered--in pursuit of them. Our loss was not so great, but the
men experienced great thirst, and many were scorched by the fires; in
some instances the cartridges were exploded in their boxes.

About the 25th Gen. Butler, having pontooned the James River at Deep
Bottom, crossed a heavy force to the north side. Our brigade was
ordered to reconnoitre this force, and some fighting ensued. We found
them in force and strongly fortified, and an attack was deemed
inadvisable, so we were withdrawn and ordered to Petersburg. We reached
Petersburg on the 1st of July, and were placed on the lines a short
distance from the city, to the left of the Weldon Railroad.

On the 15th of July, private Daniel W. McConnell was appointed Orderly

We remained near Petersburg comparatively quiet until the 26th of July,
when Grant crossed another corps at Deep Bottom, to attack our pontoons
at Drury's Bluff, and prevent Lee from sending re-enforcements to the
north side of the river. Our brigade was ordered back in haste to this
point, and, although the enemy had gained some partial success, we
drove him back and defeated the expedition. As events afterwards
proved, these movements were only feints to draw our troops from
Petersburg to better enable Grant to carry out his plans to make a
breach in our lines in front of Petersburg. Uniform failure had now
rendered him desperate, and Grant concluded the only wise thing now to
do, was to "blow us up." Burnside was duly appointed "blower."


On the night of the 28th, Hancock's corps was secretly withdrawn from
the north side, and every preparation was made for the great
forthcoming event.

Grant had constructed a mine under one of our forts in front of
Petersburg, the main gallery of which was five hundred and twenty-two
feet in length, with eight side galleries; in each of these galleries
was placed about fourteen hundred pounds of powder. Gen. Burnside, in
charge of this new feature of warfare, was to explode the "infernal
machine," and walk into Petersburg with his colored troops, supposedly

About daylight on the morning of the 30th, this famous mine--afterwards
known as the "crater"--was exploded with a great noise, as of a
"rushing mighty wind, and there was a great earthquake, and the sun
became black." About one hundred of our men and three or four guns were
moved out of their places into the air, and when the smoke cleared away
an opening about one hundred and fifty feet long, sixty feet wide, and
thirty feet deep appeared in place of our earthworks. Simultaneously
with this explosion the enemy opened a terrific fire along their whole
front, and the white division selected for this occasion came slowly
through the abattis up to this _hole_, where they were met by a
merciless fire from our artillery, enfilading them right and left, with
our infantry in their front. They were badly led, and, being
demoralized, they faltered and sought shelter in the crater. Next came
the "nigger" division, and the "colored troops fought bravely," until
the withering fire from our guns created a panic, when into the crater
pell-mell they rushed, white and black, a disordered, mangled,
quivering mass; our shot, shells, balls, and canister creating a
perfect carnival of death. Some few endeavored to leave the crater and
run back, but they were immediately shot down. Those who witnessed the
scene say it was beyond the power of words to describe. Our lines were
soon re-established, and our brigade was sent to relieve the troops
holding the lines where the mine was sprung. Thus ended this "miserable

The space between the two lines, as now formed, was so close as to
endanger any exposure whatever, and we had to hug our earthworks very
closely. Our company was in line immediately at the crater. In our
front, and almost under our noses, lay the bloated, festering bodies of
their dead, exposed to the scorching rays of a July sun. To make our
situation still more interesting, it was supposed that the battery on
our right was also mined; and we were daily and nightly in fear of
another explosion, and to be landed--no telling where. We remained in
this position for a week, when Grant asked for a truce to bury his
dead. We were then moved a short distance to our right, where we
remained until about the middle of August. While on these lines, we
literally lived under the ground. We had to pass to and from the front
in covered ways; our rations were all prepared in the rear, and sent to
us. We were compelled to sleep in bomb-proofs to avoid their mortar
shells, with which they enlivened the scene at night.

On the 18th of August, Warren's corps seized a portion of the Weldon
Railroad near Petersburg, when we were withdrawn from our position in
front of the city and moved to this point. On the 25th, this success
was followed up by an attempt under Gen. Hancock to take possession of
Ream's Station, farther south, on the same road. A. P. Hill's corps was
selected to drive him from this position. On our arrival we were
deployed in line, and ordered to go forward. The undergrowth and fallen
trees over which we had to climb our way retarded our advance, and Gen.
Cooke ordered the 27th and 48th regiments forward first. When they had
gotten sufficiently advanced, he directed the other two regiments of
our brigade, the 46th and 15th, to advance. When we reached the enemy's
works, we found them heavily manned with infantry and artillery.
Nothing daunted, however, we still advanced through shot and shell
until we came to a hand-to-hand fight across the breastworks. The two
other regiments now came up and in a few moments the enemy broke and
fled in confusion, leaving their guns. The colors of the 27th, carried
by Sergeant Richards, of the Orange Guards, were the first seen on
their works. We pursued them, and turned their own guns upon them; but
having no friction primers, we could not use them to advantage. We
captured over two thousand prisoners and twelve pieces of artillery.

Our loss in this brilliant dash was very heavy, and North Carolina's
troops alone, consisting of Cooke's, McRea's, and Lane's brigades, were
engaged. The 27th regiment came out of the fight with less than
seventy-five men!

The Grays lost in killed, private John Coltrain; in wounded, Sergeants
William U. Steiner and A. C. Cheely, privates Hardy Ayers, James S.
Scott, Emsley W. Stratford, and Wash. Williams.

Warren had now made good his hold upon the railroad, and these events
did not materially affect the general result. The enemy's left
gradually reached farther westward, until, in October, it was
established on the left bank of Hatcher's Run, eight miles southwest of


On the 26th of August, we returned to our position in the trenches,
where we remained until the latter part of September.

On the 16th, Robert T. Heath and James Hacket joined the Grays.

The casualties in the campaign so far had sadly reduced our ranks. At
the battle of Ream's Station, Capt. Herring, senior officer of the
regiment, was wounded, when Capt. J. A. Sloan, next in rank, took
command of the regiment, and Sergeant Thomas J. Rhodes commanded the
Grays. Our muster-roll on the 31st of August contained sixty names rank
and file. One captain, one sergeant, two corporals, and sixteen
privates were reported for duty. One officer and thirty-five men
absent, wounded, and prisoners; four men on detached service.

On the 18th of September, private Geo. H. Woolen died while a prisoner
of war at Point Lookout, Md. On the 13th, Samuel E. B. Gray was killed
in the trenches before Petersburg, and on the 27th, private Wm. N.
Kirkman. About the same time, Sergeant Daniel McConnell, while lying
sick in the field hospital in rear of our lines, was seriously injured
by a shell passing through the hospital and so near to him as to cause
a paralysis of his limbs, from which he died.

On the night of the 28th of September, Butler, with the corps of Birney
and Ord, crossed to the north side of the James, and moved up the
river, with the view of attacking Fort Harrison, near Chapin's Farm. A
portion of his force made a feint upon the Newmarket road, and while
this engagement was in process, a column moved on the fort and captured
it. This resulted in giving to the enemy a secret lodgment on the north
side of the James, and a position very menacing to Richmond.

On the 20th, we were moved still further to the right; and on the next
day, were engaged in a spirited skirmish near Battery No. 45, on our
advanced lines. Every few days, we were moved still farther to the
right, skirmishing and picketing, until we reached Hatcher's Run, about
the 1st of December.

About daylight, on the morning of the 27th of October, three corps of
the enemy moved towards the Boydton Plank-Road with a view to turn our
right flank and get possession of the Southside railroad, which was
now Lee's principal communication. When they reached the Boydton road,
they found our troops entrenched at every point. Hancock's corps
continued to advance in the direction of Stony Creek, supposing this
to be the termination of our lines, and thereby creating a gap between
his right and the left of the 5th army corps. Mahone's division,
taking advantage of this opening in their lines, assailed Hancock's
right, and drove Gibbons' division some distance back. Meanwhile,
Hampton with his cavalry began to attack his rear. Our brigade was
moved up the creek (Hatcher's Run) as far as Burgess' Mill, and was
placed in position to be ready on the next morning to charge the enemy
from their position on the other side of the creek. The only means of
crossing the stream was a narrow country bridge, which was guarded by
their sharpshooters, and beyond on the hills, about one hundred yards
off, was posted their artillery. The charge was to be made at
daylight; and with this _pleasant_ prospect before us, you may imagine
we passed a _comfortable_ night in anticipation. When morning came,
our sharpshooters were advanced, and found, to our comfort and
delight, that Grant had withdrawn his troops during the night, and
retraced his steps to their intrenchments in front of Petersburg. He
had been completely frustrated, and thus failed in his flank movement.

On the following day we were in position on the left of Hatcher's Run,
and as active operations were considered closed for the winter, we
began to build winter quarters. In a short while we had comfortable
cabins, in which we remained quietly until the 8th of December.

On the 8th of December the 2d army corps, by way of diversion, made a
raid on the Petersburg & Weldon Railroad, and A. P. Hill's corps was
ordered to meet them. On the evening of the 8th we quit our comfortable
quarters, and in the sleet and driving snow, marched until 2 o'clock
a.m. of the 9th, when we bivouacked till morning. We then marched on,
in the bitter cold, to Bellfield, when we found the enemy were
retreating up the Jerusalem Plank-road. From here we were ordered back
to Jarratt's Station to try to intercept them. Just as we reached this
point we encountered a large force of their cavalry. Pegram's artillery
was thrown forward, and our brigade, concealed in the pines, clad with
ice and sleet, was thrown into line as support.

The enemy were not aware of our presence, and charged upon the
artillery. Our skirmishers received the charge. Seeing that the battery
was supported, they began to retreat. We pursued them across the
railroad and pushed forward rapidly for several miles, hoping to
intercept their infantry, but we found the pursuit useless. As darkness
was now upon us, we halted for the night, and next morning resumed our
march for our camp, which we reached, hungry and almost frozen, on the

Grant behaved himself now tolerably well until Sunday morning, February
5th, when, becoming restless, he began one of his periodical movements,
and succeeded in getting very near our lines before we were aware of
his movements. About the middle of the day Davis' Mississippi brigade,
which was a mile to our left, was marched down to our position and
relieved us. We were then marched up the lines some two miles, where we
crossed our works and formed a line outside of them. We then marched to
the front about one mile, when we turned to the right, and forming line
of battle, began to advance and soon struck the skirmish line of the
enemy, which we drove with our line of battle some distance, until we
came in view of their line posted upon a hill in a field behind
earthworks. We were ordered to charge. We started up the hill, and when
we had gone some distance, and seeing the brigade on our left was not
charging with us, we fell back to the edge of the woods. The enemy now
made a strong demonstration on our right flank, and to prevent this
movement we had to fall back to our reserve line, when a Georgia
brigade took the place of ours. As they were ordered forward a portion
of our regiment, among them the Grays, thinking the order came from our
commanding officer, advanced with this brigade and fought through the
remainder of the day. After dark we were returned to our breastworks,
and when we reached them we found that we had been fighting in front of
our former position, and had been moved two miles up the lines to be
marched back again to fight in the place of other troops who had been
moved into our earth works, and almost directly in front of our camp.
[There are some things past finding out and beyond explanation, but as
the deductions of a citizen soldier are at no time of valuable
consideration, I forbear.]

On the following day we were returned to our quarters, where we enjoyed
quiet and rest until the latter part of March.

While we were in the heat of the battle of the 5th of February, some
few of the new recruits who had recently joined our brigade, not
exactly fancying the shot and shell which were flying around, thought
the rear was a safer place, and suiting the action to the thought,
"dusted." Gen. Lee with several of his staff was seated on horseback in
rear of our lines and in proximity to the battle, awaiting the issue,
when observing these men crossing the works without their guns, in
seeming alarm and haste, he rode toward them, endeavoring to halt and
return them to their command, when one of the "dusters," in grave
alarm, raised his hands and voice in terror, exclaiming: "Great God,
old man, get out of the way, you don't know nothing," continued his
rapid flight too terrified to recognize or obey chieftain or orders.


The Grays were in winter quarters on the left side of Hatcher's Run,
one mile and a half below Burgess' mill. While here we received orders
at midnight on the 24th of March, to be in readiness to move in the
direction of Petersburg. Leaving the sick and wounded to take care of
the camp and the lines in our immediate front, we began our march, not
knowing the cause of this seeming untimely order. After two hours rapid
marching we reached Petersburg, and bivouacked near the water-works.
About daylight we were quietly marched into our trenches in front of
and to the right of Hare's Hill. The troops who had just occupied these
trenches where we now were had been marched out, and were in readiness,
under General Gordon, to make a prearranged sortie upon the Federal
forts on Hare's Hill.

The attack was made in force about daylight. Our troops gained
possession of the enemy's works, but were soon compelled to abandon
them, owing to the superior force of the enemy and to the fact that our
forces were bewildered in the darkness.

About two o'clock p.m. we were ordered back to our camp on Hatcher's
Run. Before reaching it, however, we were informed that our sick and
wounded had been routed, and that the enemy was in possession of our
picket line. Gen. Cooke immediately ordered out his sharpshooters, and
by a flank movement drove off the enemy and regained possession of his
line. Next morning the sharpshooters were relieved by the regular
pickets, under command of Capt. John A. Sloan of the Grays, who held
the lines against repeated attacks until the first of April.

At midnight of the first of April our brigade was relieved by Davis'
Mississippi brigade. Our brigade now crossed the creek and took
position in Fort Evliss. As soon as day dawned the enemy, being on
three sides of us, opened fire upon us with artillery and infantry.
Although protected to some extent, some of our men were killed by their
shells during the morning. In the meanwhile a desperate fight was going
on between fort Evliss, the position we were occupying, and Petersburg.
Our position in the fort was only tenable, provided the troops on our
left held their position. Consequently, the issue of the fight was
awaited by us with much anxiety. Just before sunrise a courier dashed
into the fort with news that the lines had been broken and our troops
were in retreat. We were, in consequence, immediately withdrawn from
our works, and began our retreat from Petersburg. After retreating some
five miles, being pressed sorely by the enemy, two regiments of our
brigade were deployed as skirmishers.

Arriving now at Southerland's tavern, on the Southside road, we formed
line of battle and awaited the enemy's advance. They soon came up
flushed with success, and attacked with great confidence. But we
repulsed them with heavy loss, capturing many prisoners. Reinforcements
coming up we were flanked and compelled again to retreat. After
following us cautiously for some hours, and night coming on, the enemy
abandoned further pursuit.

We now endeavored to cross the river so as to join the main army, from
which we had been separated by the break in the lines that morning. We
followed up our retreat until two o'clock that night, when we halted
and rested on our arms until morning. At sunrise we began our
journeyings again, reaching Deep Creek, unmolested, about nine o'clock.
We wandered up this creek about three miles, fording it at this point.
We then endeavored to make Goode's bridge on the Appomattox, but night
overtaking us, we camped at the cross-roads near Goode's bridge, At one
o'clock at night we received marching orders. After three hours hard
marching through fields, bog, and fen, we came upon the advance of the
main army, which had just crossed the Appomattox on a pontoon bridge.
We were delighted to meet our old comrades once more after a three
days' separation. What added to the interest of the occasion in a
private way was the fact that Major Webb had found a canteen full of
_something_, and my ever faithful "Bill" had captured a hen's nest
and scouped in half a dozen or more of eggs. We celebrated our
deliverance and _reunion_.

At the suggestion of the officers of our regiment, it was agreed, there
being only about seventy men for duty, that we should form a battalion
of two companies, the officers giving up their rank temporarily, and
the non-commissioned officers going into the ranks. Lieut.-Col. J. C.
Webb commanded the battalion. Major Calvin Herring took command of the
first company, and Capt. John A. Sloan took command of the second. This
organization was maintained until the surrender.

On the night of the fourth we camped at Amelia Court-House, in the
woods just outside of the town, and rested on our arms in line of
battle. The next day was consumed in protecting our wagon trains from
the frequent attacks of the enemy's cavalry. We now continued our
march, fighting by day and retreating by night. Our provision train was
burned by the enemy near Rice's station, and our rations that night
consisted of one quart of corn per man in lieu of meal. The next day we
passed through Farmville. Having been the rear guard for several days,
we were now relieved by Scales' North Carolina brigade. Organization
and discipline was now rapidly giving away. We were skirmishing and
fighting to protect ourselves at every point in a kind of Guerrilla
warfare, every man, for the most part, doing his fighting on his own

Saturday night, April the 8th, we camped in about three miles of
Appomattox Court-House. Before day next morning we were hastily ordered
up and moved to the front. We were rapidly marched up the road filled
with ambulances and wagons until we came within full view of Appomattox
Court-House, where we could plainly see the Federal line of battle on
the hills at and beyond the court-house. We were immediately thrown
into line of battle on the right of the road and ordered to hold
ourselves in readiness to advance at any moment. On the front line we
awaited further orders.


Reader! The writer said, when he began the "Reminiscences of the
Guilford Grays," that it was not his purpose to undertake the severe
labors of the historian, but to confine himself to the humbler task of
relating what, has been part of his own experience.

To make the thread of narrative continuous and intelligible, it
deserves to be mentioned, however, that it has been necessary to allude
to portions of the history of those eventful times in which the Grays
were only generally interested, which the circumstance will justify.

The writer closes this, his last chapter, with the consciousness that
he has been actuated by the very kindest feelings to all, and that if
an intimation has escaped him which may have injuriously touched the
feelings of any one, none such was intended. How he has performed his
work, the reader will judge. This much he will say for himself, that he
has attempted to do it faithfully and--lovingly.

But little more now remains to be said. The morning of the 9th of April
presented a spectacle never to be forgotten by those who saw it.
General Gordon was at the front with a meagre two thousand men; behind
us smoked the remnants of the wagon-trains; in the rear, drawn up and
ready again to strike, was the shattered wreck of Longstreet's once
grand and noble command. About ten o'clock dispositions were made for
attack, when Gordon was ordered to advance.

_In vain! Alas, in vain! Ye gallant few!_ Suddenly a _halt_ was
called, a flag of truce appeared upon the scene, hostilities ceased,
and a dreamy sadness filled the April air. The grand old Army of
Northern Virginia was environed! "I have done what I thought best for
you," "the gray-headed man" said to his men. "My heart is too full to
speak, but I wish you all health and happiness."

The negotiations relating to the surrender had been instituted on the
7th by a note from General Grant to General Lee. The correspondence was
continued until the 9th, when the terms proposed by General Grant were

On the 10th, General Lee issued his farewell address to his army. On
the afternoon of the 11th, the gallant Gordon spoke most eloquently to
the little remnant massed in the open field.

The sun hid his face in sullen sympathy behind the clouds, night
settled drearily over the camp, and the brave old army fell asleep.

    "Hushed was the roll of the Rebel drum,
    The sabres were sheathed and the cannon was dumb;
    And Fate, with pitiless hand, had furled
    The flag that once challenged the gaze of the world."

On the 12th, the Army of Northern Virginia was marshaled for the last
time, not to do battle, but to stack its arms and pass out of

Of the Guilford Grays who were present at the final scene of this
eventful history, the following answered to roll-call: Captain Jno. A.
Sloan, Lieut. Rufus B. Gibson, 1st Sergeant Thomas J. Rhodes, Sergeant
Joel J. Thom; privates Peter M. Brown, Lewis N. Isley, Jas. M. Hardin,
Walter Green, E. Tonkey Sharpe, Geo. W. Lemons, Silas C. Dodson, and
Samuel M. Lipscomb.

On the 11th, printed certificates, certifying that we were paroled
prisoners of war, were issued and distributed among us, bearing date
April 10th, 1865, Appomattox Court-House, granting us "permission to go
home, and remain there undisturbed."

Comrades! We entered the service in the bloom of youthful vigor and
hope, with cheerful step and willing heart, leaving happy homes in
peace and prosperity behind. We took the field for a principle as
sacred as ever led a hero to the cannon's mouth, or a martyr to the
place of execution.

This principle was honor and patriotism; a firm determination to defend
to the last that constitution which our fathers had handed down and
taught us to revere as the only safeguard of our personal rights and

After four long years, we returned to our homes in tattered and
battle-stained garments, footsore, weary, and with aching hearts. We
returned to see poverty, desolation, and ruin; to find the hearts of
our loved ones buried in the graves of the dead Confederacy. Aye! and
we have seen other sorrows. We have seen that constitution subverted
under the forms of law; we have seen the rights of individuals and
communities trampled in the dust without hope of redress. Nay, more! We
have seen the government of the fathers removed from existence, and an
engine of oppression, no longer a Union of States, but a _Nation_,
like the devil-fish of the sea, reaching its hideous and devouring
arms in all directions from one common centre, knowing only one law of
action and of motive--_the insatiate greed of avarice and plunder_.

But though the Confederacy went down in fire and smoke, in blood and in
tears, that truth, which was the guiding-star of the devoted soldiers
who fought its battles, and of those at home who toiled and prayed for
its success--that truth did not lower its standard or surrender its
sword at Appomattox. We submit to the inevitable. We submit in dignity
and in silence. But because we accept, with becoming minds and conduct,
that subjugation which the fortune of war has entailed upon us, shall
we therefore pronounce the word "craven?" _Shall we now recant?_ Shall
we now solemnly declare that we did not believe what we professed to
fight for? Shall we thus insult, either in word or act, the memories of
the dead heroes--and we dare maintain they died heroes--who sleep on a
thousand hillsides and in the valleys of our common country?

Should we thus prostrate ourselves to invite the scorn and contempt
which even our enemies would have the right to bestow upon us? _Never!_
A thousand times never! "Will not history consent, will not mankind
applaud, when we still uphold our principles as right, our cause as
just, our country to be honored, when those principles had for
disciple, that cause for defender, that country for son--Robert Lee?

"Not to his honor shall extorted tributes carve the shaft or mould the
statute; but a grateful people will in time give of their poverty
gladly that, in pure marble or time-defying bronze, future generations
may see the counterfeit presentment of this man--the ideal and
consummate flower of our civilization; not an Alexander, it may be; nor
Napoleon, nor Timour, nor Churchill--greater far than they, thank
heaven--the brother and the equal of Sidney and of Falkland, of Hampden
and of Washington!"

    "He sleeps all quietly and cold
      Beneath the soil that gave him birth,
    Then brake his battle-brand in twain
      And lay it with him in the earth."

A word to the survivors of the Guilford Grays, and I close these
reminiscences. From the period of the outbreak of the war in April,
1861, to the surrender of the Confederate army in April, 1865, the
muster-rolls of the Grays have contained one hundred and eighty names.
Of this number, some were transferred to other commands, some were
discharged for physical disabilities and other causes. A large
proportion sleep, unmindful of the rude farmer's ploughshare upon the
fields made memorable by their deeds. Some rest under the shades of the
trees in the quiet cemeteries of your forest-green city, and some in
the sacred churchyards of your historic country. Oh! they suffered a
sad, dark fate--fallen in unsuccessful war!

On each return of Spring, come and bring flowers, nature's choicest,
and scatter them on their graves. So long as tears fall, come and shed
them there, and show to the world that we, of all men, are not ashamed
of their memories or afraid to vindicate their motives.

And as we stand upon this hallowed ground, let us bury all animosities
engendered by the war. In the grave there can be no rancorous hates;
between the sleepers there is perpetual truce. Shall the living have
less? Savages, only, perpetuate immortal hates. Then permit no
"barbarian memory of wrong" to lodge in our breasts while we keep
vigils over these graves of our illustrious dead.

To you who stood by me through all these eventful scenes, and came up
out of the great tribulation, I pray Heaven's choicest blessings ever
attend you--and now--_adieu_.



Captain JOHN SLOAN.--Elected Lieutenant-Colonel of the 27th North
Carolina Regiment, September, 1861; promoted to colonelcy December,
1861; resigned April, 1862; died since war.

1st Lieutenant WILLIAM ADAMS.--Elected Captain, vice Capt. John Sloan
promoted, October 5th, 1861; killed at battle of Sharpsburg September
17th, 1862.[1]

          [1] William Adams was born in Greensboro on the 18th of
          February, 1836. In June, 1858, he graduated at the University
          of the State. Shortly after his return from the University,
          he entered the office of R. P. Dick, Esq., as a student of
          the law. He was licensed to practice in the county courts in
          December, 1859, and was admitted to the bar at February Term,
          1860, At the formation of the Grays in 1860, he was chosen
          and appointed 1st Lieutenant. On the night of the 19th of
          April, 1861, he left with the Grays for Fort Macon. On the
          5th of October, 1861, he was unanimously elected to the
          captaincy of the Grays, _vice_ Capt. John Sloan, promoted
          to Lieutenant-Colonelcy of the 27th Regiment.

          On the 22d of April, the Grays reorganized under the
          conscript act, and Capt. Adams was re-elected without
          opposition, his men having implicit confidence in his skill,
          ability, and courage. At the battle of Sharpsburg, he fell
          wounded to the death, a martyr to the cause he loved so well.
          Young in years, high in hopes, illustrious in daring and
          chivalrous deeds, he fills a soldier's grave in the quiet
          country of his native town--mourned by all who knew him.

2d Lieutenant JAS. T. MOREHEAD, JR.--Resigned April 20th, 1861;
appointed captain in the 45th North Carolina Regiment; promoted to
Lieutenant-Colonel in the 53d Regiment, and after the death of Colonel
Owens, became its Colonel; wounded at Spottsylvania, Gettysburg, and
captured at Hare's Hill.

2d Jr. Lieutenant JOHN A. GILMER, JR.--Detailed as adjutant of the
27th North Carolina Regt. September, 1861; elected Major December,
1861; promoted to Colonelcy November, 1862; wounded at battle of
Fredericksburg, December 13th, 1862; severely wounded at Bristow,
October 14th, 1863; resigned, on account of wounds, January, 1865.

LOGAN, JNO. E., M.D.--Entered the service as Surgeon of the Grays;
remained at Fort Macon about four months; appointed Surgeon of the 4th
North Carolina Regiment; transferred to the 14th North Carolina
Regiment, where he served as Surgeon until close of the war.

1st Sergeant WILLIAM P. WILSON.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; elected 2d
Lieutenant Jr., vice J. A. Gilmer promoted, September, 1861; appointed
Adjutant of 27th North Carolina Regiment, at reorganization of State
troops, April, 1862; died of disease at Greensboro March 3, 1863.

2d Sergeant JOHN A. SLOAN.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed
Sergeant-Major of the post at Fort Macon May, 1861; elected 2d
Lieutenant January 14, 1862; elected 1st Lieutenant, April 22, 1862;
promoted to Captain September 17, 1862; Judge Advocate of Heth's
Division court-martial; surrendered at Appomattox Court-House.

3d Sergeant GEO. W. HOWLETT.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; discharged on
account of affection of his eyes July 23, 1862.

4th Sergeant SAM'L B. JORDAN.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; captured at
battle of New Berne March 14, 1862; exchanged and discharged at
reorganization of State troops April 22, 1862; died since the war.

1st Corporal THOS. J. SLOAN.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; detached at
General Ransom's Head-Quarters February, 1862; appointed Sergeant
April, 1862; detailed as musician August 1, 1862.

2d Corporal BENJ. G. GRAHAM.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed
Sergeant January, 1862; appointed Orderly-Sergeant April 22, 1862;
elected 2d Lieutenant September 22, 1862; detailed as Ordnance Officer
December, 1862; resigned November 9, 1864.

3d Corporal SILAS C. DODSON.--Returned to his home from Fort Macon;
re-enlisted May 16, 1862; detailed as Clerk Commissary Department
December 15, 1862; surrendered at Appomattox Court-House.

4th Corporal ED. B. CROWSON.--Enlisted April 20, 1801; appointed
Sergeant August 1, 1862; captured at Bristow October 14, 1863; died in
prison at Point Lookout January 23, 1864.


AYERS, HARDY.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; wounded at Ream's Station
August 25, 1864; died since the war.

AYERS, JAMES.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; discharged, for disability May
12, 1862.

ARCHER, W. D.--Enlisted June 9, 1861; wounded at Sharpsburg September
17, 1862; killed at Fredericksburg December 13, 1862.

AYER, HENRY W.--Enlisted May 15, 1863; transferred to Company C, 48th
Regiment, North Carolina troops, March 1, 1864; died since the war.

BRYAN, WILL L.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal September
21, 1862; died of disease in camp near Fredericksburg December 17,

BROWN, PETER M.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; severely wounded at
Sharpsburg September 17, 1862; detailed on Provost Guard February 14,
1864; surrendered at Appomattox Court-House.

BOON, HENRY M.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; captured at Bristow October 14,

BOLING, RICH'D G.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; died of disease in General
Hospital, Richmond, Va., January 10, 1863.

BROWN, R. D.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; died of disease in hospital,
Petersburg, Va., September 21, 1862.

BURNSIDES, BENJ. F.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; wounded at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862; detailed as teamster during 1863; wounded at 2d
Cold Harbor June 3, 1864.

BURNSIDES, W. W.--Enlisted July 15th, 1861; discharged under Conscript
Act, May 22d, 1862; rejoined the company April 7th, 1863; wounded at
Bristow October 14th, 1863.

CAMPBELL, CHAS. A.--Enlisted April 20th, 1861; appointed Corporal April
22, 1862; appointed Sergeant August 1, 1862; promoted to
Orderly-Sergeant November 1, 1862; wounded at Sharpsburg September 17,
1862; elected 2d Lieutenant December 18, 1863; killed at Pole Green
Church, on skirmish-line, June 2, 1864.

COLLINS, JOHN D.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal April 22,
1862; transferred to the color-guard in May; died of disease in camp at
Drury's Bluff, July 16, 1862.

CHEELY, ALLISON C.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal August
1, 1862; promoted to Sergeant November 1, 1862; detailed as Chief of
Ambulance Corps, September, 1863; wounded at Ream's Station, August 25,
1864 (arm amputated).

COBLE, ALFRED F.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; killed at Sharpsburg, September
17, 1862.

COBLE, ROBERT S.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; died of disease at Frederick
City, September 12, 1862.

COBLE, HENRY I.--Enlisted February 25, 1862; wounded at Bristow,
October 14, 1863; wounded at Gary's Farm, June 15, 1864.

CLAPP, WILLIAM C.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; died at his home of disease,
August 8, 1862.

CLAPP, ISRAEL N.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; discharged (for disability)
May 12, 1862; died since the war.

COOK, WILLIAM.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; died of disease at Greensboro,
N.C., June 5, 1861.

CHILCUTT, FRANK G.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; wounded at battle of
Wilderness May 5, 1864; (arm amputated.)

CRIDER, HENRY.--Enlisted April 12, 1862; killed at Bristow October 14,

CRUTCHFIELD, PAUL.--Enlisted June 1, 1862, as a substitute for B. N.
Smith; captured at Sharpsburg September 17, 1862; released in October;
captured again at Bristow October 14, 1863.

COLTRAIN, JOHN.--Enlisted February 27, 1862; captured at Bristow
October 14, 1863; exchanged and returned to his company June 18, 1864;
killed at Ream's Station August 25, 1864.

CANNADY, JOHN.--Enlisted February 27, 1862; killed at Bristow October
14, 1863; (a christian, a hero, a friend.)

COLTRAIN, ROB'T. L.--Enlisted February 27, 1862; discharged
(disability) July 23, 1862.

CLARK, D. LOGAN.--Enlisted February 27, 1862; discharged (disability)
June, 1862.

CROWSON, CYRUS M.--Enlisted August 4, 1862; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863; shot through both legs.

COLTRAIN, DAN'L B.--Enlisted October 20, 1863; wounded at 2d Cold
Harbor June 3, 1864.

DONNELL, ROB'T. L.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; wounded and captured at
Sharpsburg September 17, 1862; imprisoned at Chester, Pa., where he
died of his wounds November 6, 1862.

DAVIS, JAS. C.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; died of disease at Fort Macon
September 8, 1861.

DENNIS, WILLIAM.--Enlisted July 20, 1862.

DENNIS, JAMES.--Enlisted July 20, 1802; discharged (disability) May 15,

DENNIS, WM. D.--Enlisted June 15, 1801; wounded in the face at Bristow,
October 14, 1863.

DONNELL, WM. H.--Enlisted February 18, 1864.

DICK, PRESTON P.--Enlisted March 1, 1864.

EDWARDS, JAMES T.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; killed at Sharpsburg September
17, 1862.

EDWARDS, JAS. M.--Enlisted March 4, 1862; killed at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862.

EDWARDS, DAVID H.--Enlisted June 1, 1861; detailed as courier to
General L. O. B. Branch, May 1, 1862; appointed Regiment-Quartermaster
Sergeant, December 1, 1862; captured at Bristow October 14, 1863.

FORBIS, H. RUFUS.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; captured at Sharpsburg,
September 17, 1802; exchanged and returned to his company November 25;
appointed Corporal December 20, 1862; wounded at Bristow October 14,
1863; died of his wounds in hospital at Richmond, October 27, 1863.

FORBIS, H. SMILEY.--Enlisted June 15, 1861; died of disease in
Lynchburg, Va., March 12, 1864.

GORRELL, HENRY C.--Ensign, with rank of Lieutenant; resigned at Fort
Macon, May, 1861; re-entered the service as Captain; killed near
Richmond in a gallant charge at the head of his company, June 21, 1862.

GIBSON, RUFUS B.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; captured at Sharpsburg;
exchanged and returned to his company November 25, 1862; appointed
Corporal December 18, 1863; wounded at Bristow; elected 2d Lieutenant
November 9, 1864.

GREENE, WALTER.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed courier to General
Cooke December, 1862; wounded at Bristow; surrendered at Appomattox

GRETTER, MIKE.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; acting Commissary Sergeant at
Fort Macon; appointed Brigade Commissary-Sergeant March 18, 1862.

GRAY, SAM'L E. B.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; wounded at Bristow
October 14, 1863; killed on the lines near Petersburg September 13,

GANT, JAS. H.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; died of disease in hospital at
Richmond February 24, 1863.

GREESON, THOS. R.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; captured at Frederick
City September 11, 1862; returned to his company February 10, 1863;
wounded at Wilderness May 5, 1864.

HANNER, FRANK A.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; elected 2d Lieutenant Jr.,
at reorganization of company, April 22, 1862; promoted to Senior 2d
Lieutenant September 17, 1862; promoted to 1st Lieutenant October 15,
1863; died of disease in hospital at Richmond June 3, 1864.

HIGGINS, ED. B.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; detailed as musician August 1,

HUNT, L. G.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; acted as Surgeon of the company at
Fort Macon; appointed Assistant Surgeon of 27th Regiment, North
Carolina troops, June 13, 1862.

HOOD, ABE.--Enlisted April, 1861; discharged under conscript act May
22, 1862.

HANNER, W. D.--Discharged under conscript act May 22, 1862.

HOPKINS, W.--Discharged under conscript act May 22, 1862.

HAMPTON, ROBERT F.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; wounded at 2d Cold Harbor,
June 3; 1864; died of wounds.

HARDIN, JAMES M.--Enlisted June 10, 1861; captured at Sharpsburg,
September 17, 1882; wounded at battle of Fredericksburg, December 13,
1863; detailed as teamster, July 7, 1863; returned to duty April 22d,
1864; wounded at battle of the Wilderness, May 5th, 1864; surrendered
at Appomattox.

HUNT, W. L. J.--Enlisted September 22, 1862, detailed as pioneer
November 25, 1862; killed at 2d Cold Harbor, June 3, 1864.

HUNTER, S. A.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; killed at battle of Newberne,
March 14, 1862.

HUNTER, W. F.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; wounded at Bristow October 14,
1863; died of wounds in hospital at Richmond, November 7, 1863.

HIATT, SAMUEL S.--Enlisted June 15, 1861; wounded at the Wilderness,
May 5, 1864.

HALL, JAMES S.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; died of disease at
Hardyville, S.C., April 14, 1863; buried in Magnolia Cemetery,
Charleston, S.C.

HEATH, ROBERT F.--Sent to the company from Camp Holmes, Raleigh, North
Carolina, under bounty act, Aug. 16, 1864.

HACKETT, JAS.--Sent to the company from Camp Holmes, Raleigh, North
Carolina, under bounty act, August 16, 1864.

HALL, HUGH A.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; died of disease in hospital
at Richmond, September 19, 1862.

HORNEY, WM. A.--Enlisted May 14, 1861; detailed as nurse in hospital
near Danville, Va.; returned to duty November 22, 1863; appointed clerk
at brigade headquarters, December, 1863; wounded at the Wilderness, May
5, 1863 (leg amputated.)

ISLEY, LEWIS N.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863; surrendered at Appomattox.

JONES, R. B.--Discharged under conscript act May 22, 1862.

KLUTTS, ALFRED W.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal December
18, 1863; wounded at Wilderness May 5, 1864.

KIRKMAN, NEWTON W.--Enlisted March 1, 1862; killed on the lines in
front of Petersburg September 27, 1864.

KIRKMAN, FRANK N.--Discharged under conscript act May 22, 1862.

KELLOGG, HENRY G.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; detailed at Brigade
Commissary Department January, 1863, until January, 1864, when, by
special order, he was detailed in Commissary Department at Salisbury,
N.C., under Capt. A. G. Brenizer.

LINDSAY, R. HENRY--Enlisted April 20, 1861; transferred to Captain
Evans' Cavalry Company May, 1861; died in camp shortly afterwards.

LINDSAY, ANDREW D.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed
Ordnance-Sergeant of 27th North Carolina Regiment April 1, 1862; served
as such during the entire war; died since the war.

LINDSAY, JED H. JR.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal 1861;
appointed Sergeant April 22, 1862; promoted to Orderly-Sergeant
September 22, 1862; appointed Adjutant of 45th North Carolina Regiment
November 1, 1862; died since the war.

LANE, ISAAC F.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; died of disease at Leesburg,
N.C., February 18, 1863; (his remains were carried to Guilford.)

LINDSEY, ED. B.--Enlisted June 10, 1861; discharged--under age--by
conscript act May 22, 1862; re-entered the service as Lieutenant in 5th
North Carolina Cavalry Regiment; killed in April, 1865.

LEMONS, GEO. W.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; captured at Bristow October
14, 1863; surrendered at Appomattox.

LEMONS, JAS. M.--Enlisted May 1, 1862; died of disease at his home
March 1, 1863.

LINEBERRY, LOUIS S.--Enlisted August 17, 1862, as a substitute for H.
S. Puryear; wounded at Bristow, October 14, 1863; killed at Wilderness,
May 5, 1864.

LIPSICOMB, SAMUEL B.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; detailed as musician in
regiment band, August 1, 1862; surrendered at Appomattox.

LLOYD, THOS. E.--Enlisted January 26, 1863, as a substitute for Samuel

MCKNIGHT, JOHN H.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Sergeant at Fort
Macon; elected 2d Lieutenant, Jr., April 22d, 1862; promoted to 1st
Lieutenant September 17, 1862; killed at Bristow October 14, 1863.

MCDOWELL, J. W.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863.

MCADOO, WALTER D.--Enlisted May 4, 1861; wounded at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862; transferred to 53d North Carolina Regiment February
16, 1863.

MCLEAN, ROBERT B.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863; wounded at Wilderness May 5, 1864.

MCLEAN, SAMUEL F.--Enlisted May 6, 1862; killed at Wilderness May 5,

MARSH, JAMES M.--Enlisted June 15, 1861; captured at Bristow October
14, 1863; exchanged and returned to company June 18, 1864.

MCNAIRY, JOHN W.--Enlisted June 15, 1861; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863 (leg amputated).

MCLEAN, JOSEPH E.--Enlisted May 6, 1862; wounded at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862; detailed on Ambulance corps July 10, 1863.

MCLAIN, WM. H.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; died of disease at
Winchester, Va., October 24, 1862.

MCFARLAND, WM. H.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; captured at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862.

MCCONNELL, DANIEL W.--Enlisted July 4, 1863; appointed Orderly-Sergeant
July 15, 1864; killed at Petersburg August, 1864.

MAY, LEMUEL--Enlisted February 28, 1862; with the exception of a
furlough for 18 days--January 4, 1864, from Orange C.H.--was never
absent from his post.

MAY, WILLIAM--Enlisted May 6, 1862; wounded at Bristow October 14,

MCQUISTON, JOHN F.--Enlisted June 22, 1863.

NELSON, JOHN W.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; detailed as teamster; died of
disease in hospital, Charleston, S.C., March 17, 1863.

ORRELL, JAS. A.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; captured at Bristow October 14,

ORRELL, A. LAF'T.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863; transferred to Confederate States Navy March 31, 1864.

OWEN, WILBUR F.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; captured at Bristow October
14, 1863.

PORTER, CHAS. E.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; discharged (disability) May
12, 1862; died of disease in Greensboro.

PEARCE, JAS. R.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; captured at Bristow October
14, 1863.

PURYEAR, H. S.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; substituted Lineberry August 17,

PRATHER, L. L.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; wounded at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862; discharged (disability) March 26, 1863.

POE, WM. E.--Enlisted February 28, 1862.

PAISLEY, WM. M.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed corporal August 1,
1862; Sergeant September 22, 1862; promoted to Orderly-Sergeant
December 18, 1863; mortally wounded at Gary's farm June 15, 1864; died
of wounds in hospital at Richmond July 13, 1864.

RANKIN, JOS. W.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; wounded at Bristow October 14,
1863; died of wounds in hospital at Richmond October 24, 1863.

REID, JOHN W.--Enlisted June 16, 1861; transferred to 48th North
Carolina Regiment; promoted to Lieutenant in Company K December 4,

RHODES, THOS. J.--Enlisted June 25, 1861; appointed Corporal, December
17, 1862; Sergeant, February 20, 1864; promoted to Orderly-Sergeant,
September, 1864; surrendered at Appomattox.

RICKS, PLEAS. A.--Enlisted May 1, 1862, as a substitute for Jno. E.
Wharton; died of disease in hospital at Lynchburg, Va., March 12, 1864.

SLOAN, GEO. J.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; died of disease at Fort Macon,
July 31, 1861.

SMITH, JOHN H.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; died of disease at
Petersburg, August 8, 1862.

STERLING, ED. G.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; died of disease in
Greensboro, September 28, 1861.

STEINER, WM. U.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal June 1861;
Sergeant, April 22, 1862; wounded at Bristow, October 14, 1863;
Recorder for Heth Division Court-Martial; wounded at Ream's Station,
August 25, 1864.

SWEITZ, EDWARD--Enlisted April 20, 1861, as a substitute for J. H.

STRATFORD, C. W.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; appointed Corporal, August 1,
1862; Sergeant, December 18, 1863; wounded at Bristow, October 14,
1863; wounded at Wilderness, May 5, 1864.

STRATFORD, EMSLEY F.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; wounded at Ream's Station,
October 25, 1864.

SUMMERS, WM. M.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; wounded at Bristow, October 14,

SCOTT, JAS. S.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; wounded at Ream's Station August
25, 1864; wounded on the lines near Burgess' Mills; died of wounds May
6, 1865.

SILER, JOHN R.--Enlisted July 18, 1862; wounded at Wilderness May 5,

STANLEY, ANDY L.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; captured at Bristow, October
14, 1863. (The "Champion Forager" of Cooke's N.C. Brigade.)

SMITH, RICHARD S.--Enlisted August 8, 1862; wounded at Bristow October
14, 1863; appointed Corporal February 20, 1864.

SMITH, SAMUEL--Enlisted August 8, 1862; broken down in health he
furnished a substitute in the person of Thomas E. Lloyd January 26,

SMITH, B. N.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; substituted Paul Crutchfield
June 6, 1862.

SMITH, R. LEYTON--Enlisted February 28, 1862; killed at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862.

STORY, WM. C.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; appointed Corporal March 21,
1863; detailed on Color-guard; complimented in special orders for
gallantry at Bristow; wounded at Spottsylvania Court-House May 10,
1864; appointed Ensign, with rank of Lieutenant, June 1864.

SEATS, WM.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; died of disease at Winchester,
Va., January, 1863.

SOCKWELL, JOHN T.--Enlisted August 1, 1861; killed at Bristow October
14, 1863.

SHEPPARD, PAISLEY--Enlisted February 28, 1862; captured at Bristow
October 14, 1863; died while prisoner at Camp Lookout.

SHULER, EMSLEY F.--Enlisted May 6, 1862; wounded and disabled at
Bristow October 14, 1863.

SHARPE, E. TONKEY--Enlisted May 7, 1863; detailed as Provost Guard
April 26, 1864; surrendered at Appomattox.

TATE, ROBERT B.--Enlisted June 11, 1861; wounded at Wilderness May 5,
1864; died of wounds June (?), 1864.

THOM, JOEL J.--Enlisted May 10, 1862; appointed Corporal June 1, 1864;
appointed Sergeant 1864; surrendered at Appomattox.

WILEY, JAS. R.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; discharged (disability)
February 7, 1863.

UNDERWOOD, W. W.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; wounded at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862; died of wounds in hospital at Richmond September
29, 1863.

WHARTON, JOHN E.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; substituted P. A. Ricks May
1, 1861; organized a company soon thereafter and re-entered the service
as Captain in 5th North Carolina Cavalry.

WORRELL, R. B.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; captured at Bristow October
14, 1863.

WEATHERLY, ROBERT D.--Enlisted April 20, 1861; appointed Corporal
November 1, 1862; appointed Sergeant-Major of 27th North Carolina
Regiment March 27, 1863, mortally wounded at Bristow October 14, 1863;
died of wounds in hospital at Richmond October 24, 1863; buried at
Greensboro, N.C.

WEIR, SAMUEL PARK--Entered the service as Chaplain of the Grays April
20, 1861; transferred in May, 1862, to take position of Lieutenant in
46th Regiment, North Carolina troops; killed, instantly, at
Fredericksburg December 13, 1862.

WESTBROOKS, CHAS. W.--Enlisted May 1, 1861; performed the duties of
soldier and Chaplain until December 20, 1862; appointed Corporal August
1, 1862; appointed Chaplain in P.A.C.S.A. January 8, 1864.

WOODBURN, T. M.--Enlisted June 10, 1861; captured at Bristow October
14, 1863.

WILSON, JAS. L.--Enlisted July 19, 1861; captured at Sharpsburg
September 17, 1862; exchanged November 25, 1862; wounded at Wilderness
May 5, 1864.

WINFREE, W. C.--Enlisted February, 1862; discharged under Conscript Act
May 22, 1862.

WILLIAMS, WASH. J.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; wounded at Wilderness
May 5, 1864; wounded at Ream's Station August 25, 1864.

WINBOURNE, STEPH. D.--Enlisted April 28, 1862.

WOOLEN, GEO. H.--Enlisted April 28, 1862; captured at Bristow, October
14, 1863; died in prison at Point Lookout, September 18, 1864.

YOUNG, SAM'L. S.--Enlisted February 28, 1862; killed at Sharpsburg,
September 17. 1862.

BROWN, JOS. E.--Served with the company until June, 1861.

BROOKS, THOS. D.--Served with the company until June, 1861.

ROBINSON, SAMUEL--Served with the company until June, 1861.

ERWIN, FRANK.--Served with the company until June, 1861.

DUVALL W. G.--Served with the company until June, 1861.

GREGORY, GEO. H.--Enlisted in 12th Virginia Artillery and served
through the war.

ALBRIGHT, JAS. W.--Entered the service in May, 1862; served as Ordnance
Officer in 12th Virginia Artillery.

PRITCHETT, JNO. A.--Resigned as Lieutenant, April 19, 1861, and did not
re-enter the service.

CAUSEY, W. W.--Did not go into service.

COLE, JAS. R.--Left his studies at Trinity College, and served with the
company at Fort Macon until June, 1861, when he joined his brother's
cavalry company.

BOURNE, W. C.--Was Orderly-Sergeant in ante-bellum days resigned at
outbreak of the war.

KIRKPATRICK, DAVID N.--Did not go into service.

LAMB, MABEN--Did not go into service.

MORING, WM. P.--Did not go into service.

MOREHEAD, JOS. M.--Did not go into service.

TARPLEY, J. H.--Substituted Ed. Sweitz April 20, 1861.

FITZER, JOS. H.--Did not enter the service.

DONNELL, JNO. D.--Did not enter the service.

HUBER, OTTO--Did not enter the service.

GUNDLING, DAVID--Did not enter the service.


    in which the Grays (Company B, 27th North Carolina troops)
    participated in from 1861 to 1865.

    New Berne, N.C.                                March 14, 1862.
    Seven Days' Battles Around Richmond  June 26 to July 27, 1862.
    Harper's Ferry, Va.                        September 15, 1862.
    Sharpsburg, Md.                            September 17, 1862.
    Fredericksburg, Va.                         December 13, 1862.
    Bristow Station, Va.                         October 14, 1863.
    Mine Run, Va.                 November 27 to December 3, 1863.
    Wilderness, Va.                             May 5 and 6, 1864.
    Graves' Farm, Va.                                May 10, 1864.
    Spottsylvania Court-House, Va.                   May 12, 1864.
    Attlee's Station, Va.                            May 30, 1864.
    Pole Green Church, Va.                           June 2, 1864.
    Cold Harbor (2d), Va.                            June 3, 1864.
    Gary's Farm, Va.                                June 15, 1864.
    Yellow Tavern, Va.                            August 21, 1864.
    Ream's Station, Va.                           August 25, 1864.
    Bellfield, Va.                               December 9, 1864.
    Hatcher's Run, Va.                           February 5, 1865.
    Fort Euliss, Va.                    March 30 to April 2, 1865.
    Sutherland's Tavern, Va.                        April 2, 1865.

A Card to the Public.

Last May I issued to our people a card in which I stated that it was my
purpose to prepare and publish a work to be entitled: "North Carolina
in the War between the States." I also stated that "the effort will be
made to give, in a connected form, all the events pertaining to the
history of the war, so far as they relate to North Carolina."

Since the publication of the card, I have been steadily engaged in the
work proposed. Owing to the aid of many friends, and the material
furnished by them, together with the rich supply of documents to be had
here (Washington), and the material which I had already collected
myself, I have been able to make more rapid progress than I anticipated
when I began my undertaking.

If no unforeseen event occurs, I expect to have the work ready for the
printer in the summer of 1883.

I again _earnestly_ request all friends who desire to see vindicated
the name and fame of those gallant North Carolinians who aided in our
great struggle for Constitutional freedom, to send me any material they
may have on hand, or any information in their possession which they may
judge would be of interest.

"Let those who made the history tell it as it was."

      No. 1426 33d Street,
        WASHINGTON, D.C.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Reminiscences of the Guilford Grays, Co. B., 27th N.C. Regiment" ***

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