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promptly met the charges, appeared in court and gave
bail, and demanded trial. In January, 1 861, the charges
were investigated by a committee of congress, and he was
completely exonerated. After leaving Washington he
returned home and remaineid there until the spring of
1 86 1, when he was commissioned brigadier-general in
the Confederate army, May 23d. In command of his
brigade he participated in the West Virginia campaign,
joining General Wise in the Kanawha valley^ and taking
command in that district August 12th. On the 26th he
defeated Colonel Tyler, of Rosecrans' command, at
Carnif ax Perry, but from lack of co-operation was unable
to follow up his success. Here he fought a battle with
Rosecrans in September, and at Gauley Bridge had
another engagement in October. He was subsequently
assigned to the army under Albert Sidney Johnston, in
command of a brigade of Virginia troops, the Thirty-
sixth, Fiftieth, Fifty-first and Fifty-sixth and Virginia
artillery. In the organization of the Central army of
Kentucky he commanded one of the three divisions.
When Grant advanced from Cairo, Johnston intrusted
the defense of Fort Donelson to Generals Floyd, Pillow
and Buckner, Floyd taking general command by virtue
of seniority. He withstood an assault by both the land
and naval forces of the enemy on February 13th and


14th, and on the next day, believing his position unten-
able, ordered an attack in the hope of cutting a path of
retreat through the investing lines. A fierce and stub-
born battle followed, in which Pillow was successful in
gaining possession of the Charlotte road and Buckner
was equally successful on the Wynn's Ferry road. Floyd
then "started for the right of his command to see that
all was secure there, ' ' his intention being to hold the posi-
tions gained and immediately move out the entire army.
During his absence a change was made in the disposition
of the troops by General Pillow, and the enemy pressed
forward, and with the help of reinforcements regained so
much of their lost ground that it became necessary to
withdraw to the original Confederate position. A coun-
cil of war followed, in which the generals were united that
resistance was useless against the great investing force,
but both Pillow and Floyd declared that they would not
surrender, and General Buckner assumed that responsi-
bility. Forrest took out his cavalry through the sub-
merged river road, and General Floyd, with a large part
of his brigade, embarked on the river transportation and
reached Nashville in safety. He subsequently had
command of the "Virginia State Line," operating in
southwestern Virginia, finally retiring to his home at
Abingdon, Va., where he died August 26, 1863.

Brigadier-General Samuel Garland was bom at Lynch-
burg, Va., December 16, 1830, of an old Virginia family,
his great-grandmother having been a sister of President
Madison. His father, Samuel Garland, Sr. , a well-known
lawyer, died when his son was five years old. He entered
a classical school at the age of seven years, and was
graduated at the Virginia military institute, where he
was the founder and president of the first literary society
of that institution. In 1851 he was graduated in law at
the university of Virginia, and he at once entered upon
the practice of the profession at Lynchburg. His career
during the period before the war was one of worthy
prominence, and he became widely esteemed as a skillful
lawyer and polished gentleman. In 1859, after the affair
at Harper's Ferry, he organized the Lynchburg Home
Guard, of which he was the first captain. He was not
by inclination a military man, entering the service both
in 1859 and 1861 as a matter of duty; but when enlisted


in the fight, no labor was too fatiguing and no peril too
hazardous for his devoted and intrepid spirit. On April
23, 1861, he left home with his well-drilled and disci-
plined company, and proceeded to Richmond, where his
men were mustered into the service of Virginia, as Com-
pany G of the Eleventh Virginia infantry, on the follow-
ing day. Of this regiment, composed of four Ljmchburg
companies and commands from other Virginia towns, he
was placed in command as colonel, a few days later. He
took his regiment to camp at Manassas, where it joined
the brigade of General Longstreet. In the fight at
Blackburn's ford the regiment was distinguished, and
Colonel Garland was mentioned by General Longstreet,
with others, as having "displayed more coolness and
energy than is usual amongst veterans of the old serv-
ice." In the famous battle of the 21st, the regiment was
intended to take an active part, but the Federal flank
movement caused the fight to open in another quarter.
After the engagement Colonel Garland was detailed to
collect the spoil of battle on the field. In the fight at
Dranesville, in December, he was reported as behaving
with great coolness. In the absence of orders he held
his line until the rest of the Confederate force was
entirely withdrawn from the field. In February, 1862,
he was commended by General Johnston as fully com-
petent to command a brigade. In March he moved with
his regiment to the Peninsula, where the brigade came
under the command of A. P. Hill. In the battle of Wil-
liamsburg, the most severe loss was sustained by the
Eleventh regiment, and Hill reported that "Colonel Gar-
land, though wounded early in the action, refused to
leave the field, and continued to lead his regiment until
the battle was over, and his example had a most happy
effect in showing his men how to win the battle. ' ' Im-
mediately after this Garland was promoted brigadier-gen-
eral, and was assigned to the command of a brigade of
D. H. Hill's division, which after Seven Pines was com-
posed of the Fifth, Twelfth, Thirteenth, Twentieth and
Twenty-third North Carolina regiments. He was dis-
tinguished for gallant conduct in the heat of the fight at
Seven Pines; at Gaines' Mill, asked permission and made
a flank attack at an opportune juncture, which decided
the fate of the day, his men cheering and charging and
driving the enemy ; and he was in the attacking columns


at Malvern Hill. During the Second Manassas campaign
he was with Hill's division, holding McDowell in check
at Fredericksburg, after which he joined the army in the
Maryland campaign. At Fox's gap, on South mount-
ain, his North Carolinians, scarce i,ooo in all, sustained
the first attack of Cox's corps of McClellan's army on
September 14th. They held their ground with wonder-
ful heroism in the face of a furious attack. With them,
where the fight was hottest, stood General Garland,
notwithstanding the remonstrances of Colonel RuSin. It
was to him the post of duty. On one side lay McClellan
with 30,000 men; on the other was the short road to
Harper's Ferry, beleaguered by Jackson. The enemy
must be held back a day, or the Federals, under an act-
ive commander, could overwhelm the divided Confeder-
ates. In this position, early in the fight, he received a
mortal wound, from which he died on the field. "Had he
lived," wrote Gen. D. H. Hill, "his talents, pluck, energy
and purity of character must have put him in the front
rank of his profession, whether in civil or military life. ' '

Brigadier-General Richard Brooke Garnett, a cousin of
Gen. R. S. Gamett, was a native of Virginia and a grad-
uate of the same West Point class in which his cousin was
a member. Promoted second lieutenant of the Sixth
infantry on graduation, he began his services in the field
in the Florida war of 1841-42. He subsequently served
in garrison at Jefferson barracks. Mo., and on frontier
duty at Fort Towson, Indian Territory, and Fort Smith,
Ark. , and as aide-de-camp to Brigadier-General Brooke
at New Orleans. He was promoted first lieuten-
ant in February, 1847, and continued in service, at San
Antonio, Tex. , and at Fort Pierre, Dak. , where he was
promoted captain. He assisted in quelling the Kansas
disturbances in 1856-57, was detailed to escort the south-
em boundary commissioners in 1857, served again in
Kansas, and was engaged in the Utah expedition and the
subsequent march to California. In the latter territory
and in New Mexico he served until he resigned to ofiEer
his services to the Confederate States. He was commis-
sioned major, corps of artillery, C.S. A., aud in Novem-
ber, 1 86 1, promoted brigadier-general. Jackson, then in
the Shenandoah valley with a small force, was reinforced
soon afterward, and Garnett went with these forces, and


at the battle of Kernstown, March 23, 1862, he com-
manded the Stonewall brigade. During the Maryland
campaign he commanded Pickett's brigade. In the west-
ward movement on September 14th, with his brigade he
reached Boonsboro after a hot and tiresome march
over the mountains, to which he was ordered to return
that afternoon to dispute the mountain pass with the
Federal army. His troops, almost exhausted, took a
position before Turner's gap, on the eastern slope of the
South mountain, under artillery fire, and sustained for
some time a fierce attack from Reno's corps of McClellan's
army. On the 17th, Garnett and his men fought to the
southeast of Sharpsburg village, in support of the Wash-
ington artillery, and later in the day in conjunction with
S. D. Lee's battalion, and were distinguished for bravery.
General Garnett was subsequently identified with the rec-
ord of Pickett's division, in command of his brigade, con-
sisting of the Eighth, Eighteenth, Nineteenth, Twenty-
eighth and Fifty-sixth Virginia regiments, which he
finally led into action during the memorable charge on
the third day of the battle of Gettysburg. The brigade
moved forward in the front line, and gained the enemy's
strongest line, where the fighting became hand to hand
and of the most desperate character. The brigade went
into action with 1,287 n^^i^ ^^<i ^4° officers, and after the
struggle about 300 came back slowly and sadly from the
scene of carnage. General Garnett's part in this fatal
action is thus reported by his successor in command,
Maj. Charles S. Peyton: "Of our cool, gallant, noble
brigade commander it may not be out of place to speak.
Never had the brigade been better handled, and never
has it done better service in the field of battle. There
was scarcely an officer or man in the command whose
attention was not attracted by the cool and handsome
bearing of General Garnett, who, totally devoid of excite-
ment or rashness, rode immediately in rear of his advanc-
ing line, endeavoring, by his personal efforts and by the
aid of his staff, to keep his line well closed and dressed.
He was shot from his horse while near the center of the
brigade, within about 25 paces of the stone wall. "

Brigadier-General Robert Selden Garnett, born in
Essex county, Va., December 16, 1819, was graduated at
the United States military academy in 1841, and pro-


moted second lieutenant of artillery. He served at the
West Point academy from July, 1843, to October, 1844,
as assistant instructor of infantry tactics. In 1845 he was
assigned to duty as aide-de-camp to General Wool, and in
this capacity rendered conspicuous service in the battles
of Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma, winning promo-
tion to the rank of first lieutenant of the Fourth artillery.
He subsequently served as aide-de-camp to General Tay-
lor, and participated in the battles of Monterey and Buena
Vista, where he won the brevets of captain and major.
After peace was declared he was transferred to the
infantry and promoted captain. In 1852-54 he was
commandant corps of cadets and instructor in infantry
tactics at West Point. Receiving promotion to major in
March, 1855, he commanded the troops sent against the
Indians on Puget sound in the far northwest, and remain-
ing there was in charge of the Yakima expedition in
1858. Subsequently he traveled in Europe on leave of
absence until the year i86r, when he returned, resigned
his commission, and entered the Confederate army. He
was commissioned lieutenant-colonel, C. S. A., to date
from March i6th, and served as adjutant-general under
Gen. R. E. Lee, in command of the Virginia forces.
Early in June he was commissioned brigadier-general
and ordered to proceed to Staunton and assume command
of the troops to operate in northwestern Virginia. In
a few days he was engaged in the unfortunate campaign
in West Virginia, where his life was sacrificed. It was
very early in the war ; he found difficulty in obtaining
supplies, clothing and shelter for his men ; the sentiment
in that vicinity was against the Confederacy, and he was
confronted by overwhelming odds. Without a" trace of
faintheartedness, he established his headquarters at
Laurel hill, and there and at Rich mountain intrenched
his troops. On June loth, Pegram was dislodged from
Rich mountain, and a superior force compelled Gamett
to abandon Laurel hill and fall back. He was pursued
by the Federals, and a brisk action occurred on the Cheat
river, at Carrick's ford, July 13th. At the next ford on
the same day, while with his rear guard, he was instantly
"killed by a volley of the enemy, falling, as President


Davis wrote, in exemplification of the "highest quality
of man, self-sacrifice for others. ' ' His body, kindly
cared for by General McClellan, was subsequently
transferred with tokens of respect to the hands of his

Brigadier-General David Bullock Harris, a distin-
guished military engineer, was born at Fredericks hall,
Louisa county, Va., September 28, 18 14. He was grad-
uated at the United States military academy in 1833, with
promotion to brevet second lieutenant of First artillery,
and a year later was called to the position of assistant
professor of engineering at West Point. On August 31,
1835, he resigned from the army and entered the profes-
sion of civil engineering, for some time being employed
on the James river and Kanawha canal. Subsequently
he became a planter and exporter of tobacco and
flour. Early in 186 1 he was commissioned captain
of engineers of the Virginia forces, and was assigned to
the stafif of General Beauregard, with whom he was asso-
ciated from that time until the end of the war. He was
the first to reconnoiter the line at Bull run, planned and
constructed the works for the defense of Manassas Junc-
tion, and in the heat of the fight of July 21st, at the crit-
ical moment when Elzey led his brigade upon the field,
he guided that officer into position. He accompanied
Beauregard to the Mississippi valley, and after inspect-
ing the defenses at Columbus, Ky., was intrusted with
the construction of works at Island No. 10 and vicinity,
to which the artillery was removed from the Columbus
fortifications. After the fall of New Orleans he located
and constructed fortifications for heavy guns at Vicks-
burg, and thence he went with Beauregard in 1863 to
Charleston, S. C. Of his work here, Beauregard wrote,
"My best and almost only assistant for planning the con-
struction of batteries and making the selection of sites on
which they were to be erected was Maj. D. B. Harris,
the chief engineer of the department, on whom I placed
the utmost reliance, and who always thoroughly under-
stood and entered into my views. ' ' Early in May, Gen-
eral Beauregard was at Petersburg, in command of the
department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia,
and here Harris, now promoted colonel, found immediate
field for work at Drewry's bluff, where his services and


advice contributed greatly to the successful defense of
the Confederate lines. He continued on duty in the
defense of Petersburg, with promotion to the rank of
brigadier- general, until his death, October lo, 1864.

Major-General Henry Heth was bom in Chesterfield
county, Va., December 16, 1825. He is the son of John
Heth, of the Black Heth estate, in that county, who
served as a colonel in the volunteer forces of Virginia,
and as an officer in the United States navy in the war of
181 2, when he was captured with Decatur and taken to
Bermuda, whence he escaped with two comrades in an
open boat. An uncle of his, Col. William Heth, fought
at Quebec under General Montgomery and was distin-
guished in the revolutionary war. Henry Heth was edu-
cated at the United States military academy, and grad-
uated in 1847 with the rank of brevet second lieutenant
of the Second infantry. His first service was in the war
with Mexico, when he was made second lieutenant of the
Eighth infantry. He was engaged in the skirmish at
Matamoras and at Galaxara in 1847-48, and in 1848 at
the evacuation returned to Jefferson barracks. On the
Indian frontier he was on duty at Fort Atkinson, Fort
Kearny and Fort Laramie, taking a conspicuous part in
many Indian fights, and winning a first lieutenancy in
June, 1853, with promotion to adjutant in November,
1854, and to captain, Tenth infantry, in March, 1855.
Soon after the latter promotion he led a detached com-
pany, mounted as cavalry, in the Sioux expedition under
General Harney, which ended in the victory at Blue-
water. In 1857 he was assigned to special duty in pre-
paring target practice for the army, and in 1858 he
rejoined his regiment in Utah, where he remained until
the latter part of i860, when he returned to Virginia on
leave of absence. When coercion seemed inevitable he
resigned his Federal commission, served on the staff of
General Taliaferro at Norfolk, as captain, and accepted
the duty of organizing the quartermaster's department
at Richmond. He was commissioned major, C. S. A.,
and soon promoted colonel of the Forty-fifth Virginia
regiment, in which capacity he organized General Floyd's
command at Wytheville, for the West Virginia campaign,
and after participating in the battle of Camifax Ferry,
conducted Floyd's retreat from Cotton Hill. In January,


1862, he was promoted brigadier-general, and assigned to
the command in West Virginia, where he fought in May
of that year the battle of Giles Court House, in which he
was opposed to Col. R. B. Hayes, and later the battle of
Lewisburg. In June he joined Gen. Kirby Smith at
Knoxville, Tenn., and accompanied him in the move-
ment into Kentucky. After reaching Lexington he was
given charge of a division of infantry and a brigade of
cavalry, and moved against Cincinnati, some of his
troops, on September 6th, reaching the suburbs of Cov-
ington, but he was withheld from an attack by positive
orders. In February, 1863, he joined the army of North-
ern Virginia, and was assigned to the command of Field's
brigade, of which he had charge in the battle of Chancel-
lorsville. On the wounding of A. P. Hill in the first
day's fight, he succeeded to command of the division but
was himself wounded in the opening of the fight next
day, which General Lee noted with regret in his dispatch
to President Davis. He was promoted major-general
and placed in command of a division of General Hill's
corps, consisting of the brigades of Pettigrew, Brocken-
brough, Archer and Davis. Engaging in the Pennsylva-
nia campaign, he moved to Cashtown, and thence sent
Pettigrew 's brigade to Gettysburg to procure a supply of
shoes. The brigade returned with information of Federal
advance. Heth attacked the Federals under Reynolds
the next day, and fought a desperate battle, a worthy
opening of the great three days' struggle, in which he lost
in twenty-five minutes 2,700 out of 7,000 men, and half
his officers, and was himself severely wounded. He was
subsequently engaged in the affair at Falling Waters,
and in the following October, with two brigades attacked
Warren's corps of Meade's army, fighting the battle of
Bristoe Station. After wintering at Orange Court
House, he commanded the advance of Hill's corps,
marching on the plank road to resist Grant's flank move-
ment on May sth. He replied for three hours to the
attacks of General Hancock on the Brock road ; was dis-
tinguished for intrepid fighting about Spottsylvania on
the loth, nth and 12th of May, and a few days later
engaged General Warren at Nowell's Turnout. June 3d
he took part in the battle of Bethesda Church. During
the siege of Petersburg he served on the lines from July,
1864, until the evacuation, occupying the extreme right


of Lee's lines during September, October and November.
He fought gallantly on the Weldon railroad August i8th,
19th and aoth; at Reams' Station captured 2,000 men,
9 pieces of artillery and many flags ; at Burgess' Mill in
November, 1864, and in all the struggles on the right,
and lastly commanded at Burgess' Mill when the Confed-
erate lines were broken. He conducted his division on
the retreat and surrendered with the army on April 9th.
During the following years he gave his attention to min-
ing for a time, and then engaged in insurance at
Richmond, Va.

Brigadier-General Eppa Hunton was bom September
23, 1823, in Fauquier county, Va. The Huntons origi-
nally settled in New England, but the ancestor of Gen-
eral Hunton removed at an early period to Lancaster
county, Va., where his great-grandfather, William Hun-
ton, married Judith Kirk, and afterward made his home
in Fauquier county. From him the descent is through
his fourth son, James, and through the latter 's second son
Eppa. The senior Eppa Hunton was in the service of
his country during the war of 18 12, at Bladensburg and
Craney island, and as a brigade inspector of the Virginia
militia. His wife, the mother of General Hunton, was
Elizabeth Marye, daughter of William Brent, who re-
moved his family from Dumfries to Fauquier county
during the revolutionary war, in which he served with
distinction as a captain of infantry. The ancestors of
this patriot came over with Lord Baltimore ; one of his
grandsons, Col. George W. Brent, was a gallant Confed-
erate soldier. After the early death of his father, Gen-
eral Hunton was reared by his devoted mother, and
aided by his uncle, the distinguished Charles Hunton,
for four years president of the State senate, he studied
under the Rev. John Ogilvie, and subsequently he
taught school for three years, at the same time pursuing
the study of law under the guidance of the late Judge
John Webb Taylor. Admitted to the bar in 1843, he
began practice at Brentsville, the county seat of Prince
William county. In this period his military inclinations,
doubtless inherited from his father, were manifested by
his acceptance of the colonelcy of the Prince William regi-
ment, and four years later of the rank of general, com-
manding the brigade. In 1848 he married Lucy Caro-


line, daughter of Robert and Clara B. Weir, through her
mother connected with the Wallers of Virginia. The
only child of this union surviving is Eppa Hunton, Jr. , a
distinguished lawyer of the Warrenton bar, who married
Erva Winston, daughter of the gallant Gen. William H.
Payne. In 1849 General Hunton was elected common-
wealth's attorney for Prince William county, and was
continued in this office by popular vote until he relin-
quished it for other duties in 186 1. In the campaign of
i860 he was an elector on the Breckinridge ticket, and
missed success by the mispelling of his name on a few
ballots. In the famous Virginia convention of 1861 he
took the peculiar position of favoring secession for the
sake of the Union, arguing that if all the Southern
States promptly withdrew, war would be avoided, and
reconstruction on favorable and lasting terms would soon
follow. After the passage of the ordinance he was
placed upon the military committee, to recommend
measures of defense ; but feeling that his proper place
was in the field, he resigned his commission in the State
militia, and as a result of an application drawn up by his
friend, Hon. Ballard Preston, and signed by every mem-
ber of the convention, he was appointed colonel of the
Eighth Virginia regiment, which he was ordered to
organize and equip. This was rapidly accomplished at
Leesburg, where he collected a body of as brave men
(as he himself declared) as ever fought for liberty. They
won imperishable renown upon every famous field of the
army of Northern Virginia. Arriving at Manassas three
days before the great battle of 1861, he was able on
account of his familiarity with the country, to grasp the
importance of the blind road from Centreville to Sudley,

Online LibraryClement Anselm EvansConfederate military history; a library of Confederate States history → online text (page 59 of 153)