Various.

The 21st Missouri Regiment Infantry Veteran Volunteers online

. (page 1 of 3)
Online LibraryVariousThe 21st Missouri Regiment Infantry Veteran Volunteers → online text (page 1 of 3)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


THE 21ST MISSOURI REGIMENT ***




Produced by David E. Brown and The Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net (This file was
produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)









THE
21ST MISSOURI REGIMENT
INFANTRY VETERAN VOLUNTEERS.

HISTORICAL MEMORANDA.

COMPILED BY
N. D. STARR AND T. W. HOLMAN.

[Illustration]

JULY, 1899.

ROBERTS & ROBERTS, PRINTERS,
FORT MADISON, IOWA.




EXPLANATORY PREFACE.


At the close of the war and after their discharge the members of the
21st Missouri Regiment scattered over Missouri and other States of
the Union. No effort was made to keep the organization alive until
1888, when T. W. Holman, responding to the whisperings of memory for
a sight and hand clasp of the old comrades of ’61-’66, on his own
responsibility published a call, in August, 1888, for a meeting of
the survivors at Arbela, Mo. The result was a large gathering of the
veterans and the organization of the 21st Missouri Infantry Veteran
Volunteers Association. From that date to the present time annual
meetings have been held. At the meeting in 1896, Messrs. T. W. Holman
and N. D. Starr were made Regimental Historians, to compile and
perpetuate the history of the regiment. At the next meeting, in 1897,
these comrades made a partial report, and at the Edina, Mo., meeting in
1898, submitted the result of their labors in manuscript form. A motion
was then made and carried that T. W. Holman continue the labor and
revise and prepare the manuscript for publication and have it printed
for the use of the Association. In accordance with the foregoing
instructions the succeeding pages are respectfully submitted.

T. W. HOLMAN.


[Illustration: DAVID MOORE,
Colonel 21st Regiment Missouri Inf. Vet. Vols.]




THE CALL TO ARMS.

Organization of the 1st and 2d North Missouri Regiments, June and
July, 1861. - Campaigning in North Missouri During the Summer of
1861. - Order Consolidating the 1st and 2d North Missouri Regiments,
Thereafter Known as the 21st Regiment, Missouri Infantry Vols.


After the election of Abraham Lincoln in 1860 many political
disturbances and difficulties arose and he was inaugurated during a
time of overwhelming excitement. The government of Missouri at that
time was in the hands of those who were clamoring for secession from
the Union of States. Claiborne F. Jackson, who had been trained in the
political school of “States Rights,” was elected Governor. Early in the
spring of 1861 Camp Jackson was established in St. Louis and troops for
State service were mustered at that point.

The Southern states, one after another, withdrew from the Union and on
April the 11th, 1861, Fort Sumter was fired on by the Confederates.
This was the bugle call to arms, and President Lincoln’s proclamation
for 75,000 men to serve for ninety days followed. Frank P. Blair,
afterwards Major General, received authority from the general
government to organize and muster into service troops for the
prosecution of the war for the preservation of the Union.

The muster of troops for the state was very irregular and was the cause
afterwards of considerable confusion. Some men were enlisted for the
war, some for one year, then for three years; some to serve in the
state only, while others were enlisted for service in the northern part
of the state and others for the southern part. The army thus organized
was one of questionable authority. The Governor maintained that the
general government had no right to invade the state, and the latter
hesitated in regard to sending troops into a state not in open revolt
against the government.

During this period of hesitation and confusion Col. D. Moore was
commissioned Colonel and received authority to enlist and organize the
1st North Missouri Volunteers; and Col. H. M. Woodyard was given like
authority to organize the 2d North Missouri Volunteers. In the summer
and fall of 1861 these troops, acting separately, held North Missouri
against the Confederates under Cols. Porter and Green. The anomalous
conditions then existing in the state are explained by the position of
the Confederates, who claimed that they were resisting armed invasion
of the State by the Federal Government.


THE FIRST NOTE OF DEFIANCE.

About May 30, 1861, Col. Moore received authority from Gen. Lyons to
raise a regiment for the Federal service, taking the field at the head
of ten men. Clear and ringing as a bugle blast he sounded the following
challenge, which was posted in hand bills over Northeast Missouri and
Southern Iowa:

The undersigned is authorized to raise a company of volunteers in the
county, for the Union service. All who are willing to fight for their
homes, their country and the flag of the glorious Union, are invited
to join him, bringing with them their arms and ammunition. Until the
Government can aid us we must take care of ourselves. Secessionists
and rebel traitors desiring a fight can be accommodated on demand.

D. MOORE.


(The above is a verbatim copy. - T. W. H.)

Cols. Moore and Woodyard, with their commands, were so continuously
engaged with the enemy either in skirmishing, scouting or fighting,
that no time was left them for looking after recruits. Hence when the
time came to be regularly received into service both regiments were
short of the requisite number of men. Consequently the two regiments
were consolidated into what is known as the 21st Regiment of Missouri
Volunteers, by the following order:


HEADQUARTERS STATE OF MISSOURI, }
ADJUTANT GENERAL’S OFFICE. }
ST. LOUIS, DECEMBER 31, 1861. }

SPECIAL ORDERS, NO. 15.

1st. The battalion of Missouri Volunteers heretofore known as 1st
North Missouri Regiment, under the command of Col. D. Moore, and
the battalion of Missouri Volunteers heretofore known as the 2d
North Missouri Regiment, under the command of Col. H. M. Woodyard,
are hereby consolidated into a regiment to be hereafter known and
designated as the 21st Regiment of Missouri Volunteers.

2d. Col. D. Moore is hereby appointed Colonel, and Col. H. M.
Woodyard is hereby appointed Lieutenant-Colonel, of the regiment thus
formed.

By order of the Commander in Chief.

CHESTER HARDING, JR.
Adjutant General.


As a result of the above order the two regiments were consolidated
on the 1st day of February, 1862, and were mustered into the service
of the United States by Lieut. Col. Fetterman, as the 21st Missouri
Infantry Volunteers, with the following field officers:

D. Moore, Colonel.
H. M. Woodyard, Lieutenant Colonel.
B. B. King, Major.
Charles C. Tobin, Adjutant

The ten companies of the regiment had the following officers:

Company A - Charles Yust, Captain.
Henry Menn, 1st Lieutenant.
Edwin Turner, 2d Lieutenant.
Company B - Joseph Story, Captain.
L. D. Woodruff, 1st Lieutenant.
Edward Fox, 2d Lieutenant.
Company C - Simon Pearce, Captain.
William Lester, 1st Lieutenant.
T. H. Richardson, 2d Lieutenant.
Company D - N. W. Murrow, Captain.
Henry McGonigle, 1st Lieutenant.
Louis J. Ainslee, 2d Lieutenant.
Company E - Geo. W. Fulton, Captain.
T. M. McQuoid, 1st Lieutenant.
Wm. J. Pulus, 2d Lieutenant.
Company F - Joseph T. Farris, Captain.
Alex. F. Tracy, 1st Lieutenant.
F. A. Whitmore, 2d Lieutenant.
Company G - T. H. Roseberry, Captain.
E. R. Blackburn, 1st Lieutenant.
Daniel R. Allen, 2d Lieutenant.
Company H - Jno. H. Cox, Captain.
Peter S. Washburn, 1st Lieutenant.
Wm. P. Rickey, 2d Lieutenant.
Company I - Wm. Harle, Captain.
Joseph Oliver, 1st Lieutenant.
Hudson Rice, 2d Lieutenant.
Company K - Frederick Leeser, Captain.
A. D. Starkweather, 1st Lieutenant.
Geo. M. Davis, 2d Lieutenant.

It was in Canton where the regiment was mustered into service and
about the 15th of February it left that place and marched by way of
LaGrange and Palmyra to Hannibal, Mo., where several weeks were spent
in training in military duties. On the 28th of March orders came to
go to the front. Camp equipments were soon packed and the regiment on
the way to St. Louis. After a brief stop there it was taken by boat to
Savannah, Tennessee. This place was General Grant’s headquarters, who
was then making the plans which resulted in the fall of Corinth. The
regiment reported to Gen. Grant and was sent immediately to the front
and assigned to the 1st Brigade, 6th Division, Army of West Tennessee,
under command of Gen. B. M. Prentiss.

The men were soon to see fighting in earnest now. They were on the
ground where the memorable battle of Shiloh was fought a few days after
their arrival, to-wit: the 6th and 7th of April, 1862, and on account
of their advanced position they were the first to become engaged with
the enemy. The regiment suffered heavily in the fight, losing one
officer and thirty men killed, with four officers and one hundred
and fifty men wounded. Three officers and sixty-eight men were also
taken prisoners. It was here that the gallant Maj. King fell mortally
wounded. The reports of the battle by Cols. Moore and Woodyard,
published here, give a full account of the part taken by the regiment:


COLS. MOORE AND WOODYARD’S REPORTS.

HEADQUARTERS 21ST MO. INFANTRY, }
6TH DIVISION, ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE, }
APRIL 11TH, 1862. }

SIR: - In pursuance of the order of Brig. Gen. B. M. Prentiss,
commanding 6th Division, Army of West Tennessee, I, on Saturday,
(April 5th,) proceeded to a reconnoisance on the front of the line of
Gen. Prentiss’ division, and on the front of Gen. Sherman’s division.
My command consisted of three companies from the 21st Missouri
Regiment, companies commanded by Capt’s Cox, Harle and Pearce. A
thorough reconnoisance over the extent of three miles failed to
discover the enemy. Being unsuccessful, as stated, I returned to my
encampment about 7 p. m. On Sunday morning, the 6th inst., at about 6
o’clock, being notified that the picket guard of the 1st Brigade, 6th
Division, had been attacked and driven in, by order of Col. Everett
Peabody, commanding the 1st Brigade, 6th Division, I advanced with
five companies of my command a short distance from the outer line
of our encampment. I met the retreating pickets of the 1st Brigade
bringing in their wounded. Those who were able for duty were ordered
and compelled to return to their posts, and learning that the enemy
were advancing in force I advanced with the remaining companies of
my regiment, which companies having joined me I ordered an advance
and attacked the enemy, who was commanded by Brig. Gen. Ruggles, of
the Rebel army. A terrific fire was opened upon us from the whole
front of the four or five regiments forming the advance of the enemy,
which my gallant soldiers withstood during thirty minutes, until I
had communicated the intelligence of the movement against us to my
commanding General. About this time, being myself severely wounded,
the bone of the leg below my knee being shattered, I was compelled to
retire from the field, leaving Lieut. Col. Woodyard in command.

D. MOORE,
Colonel 21st Mo. Volunteers.

To Capt. Henry Binmore,
Act. A. G., 6th Division,
Army of West Tennessee.


HEADQUARTERS 21ST MO. INFANTRY, }
PITTSBURG, TENN., APRIL 12, 1862. }

SIR: - I have the honor to report that on the morning of the 6th
of April, before sunrise, Gen. Prentiss ordered Col. Moore, with
five companies of our regiment, to sustain the pickets of the 12th
Michigan Infantry. The Col. had not proceeded more than half a mile
when he met the pickets coming in with many killed and wounded. Col.
Moore immediately dispatched Lieut. Menn for the remaining five
companies. Gen. Prentiss being in camp, ordered me to join Col.
Moore. We marched some three hundred yards together, after I formed
the junction, in a nearly westerly direction, flank movement, four
ranks, when the head of the column came to the northwest corner (this
should have been the northeast corner. - T. W. H.) of a cotton field.
We were here fired upon and Col. Moore received a severe wound in the
right leg, and Lieut. Menn was wounded in the head. I then assumed
command of the regiment and formed a line of battle on the brow of a
hill, on the cotton field, facing nearly west. I held this position
for some half or three-quarters of an hour and kept the enemy in
check. He fell back and endeavored to outflank me. Discovering this
I moved my line to the north of the field again. I was then joined
by four companies of the 16th Wisconsin Infantry. Having no field
officers with them I ordered them to a position east of the field,
and as soon as this was done joined them with my command. This line
of battle was formed facing south, behind a small incline, enabling
my men to load and be out of range of the enemy’s fire. The position
proved a strong one and we managed to hold it for upward of an hour.
Finding they could not dislodge us the enemy again tried to outflank
us and deal a cross fire. I then fell back in good order, firing
as we did so, to the next hill. Col. Peabody, commanding the 1st
Brigade, here came up with the 25th Missouri Regiment. I requested
him to bring his men up to the hill on our right, as it would afford
protection to his men and be of assistance to my command. He did
so, but the enemy coming by heavy main center and dealing a heavy
cross-fire from our right and left, we could not maintain this
position for over thirty minutes. We gradually began to fall back
and reached our tents, when the ranks got broken in passing through
them. We endeavored to rally our men in the rear of our tents and
formed as well as could be expected, but my men got much scattered, a
great many falling into other regiments, under the immediate command
of Gen. Prentiss. Others divided to other divisions but continued to
fight during the two days.

Falling back to the second hill, Maj. Barnabas B. King received a
mortal wound and died in about thirty minutes. He rendered me great
assistance in the action, cheering on and encouraging my men. His
death is a heavy loss to us. He was ever active, energetic and at his
post of duty, vigilant in attending to the wants of the men. Adjt.
C. C. Tobin, who is now missing, also proved himself very active on
the field. He is supposed to be a prisoner and taken at the same
time with Gen. Prentiss. I cannot too highly praise the conduct of
the officers and men of my command, and of the companies of the 16th
Wisconsin, who acted in concert with me.

Respectfully submitted,

H. M. WOODYARD,
Lieut. Col. Com’d’g 21st Mo. Regt.

To Capt. Henry Binmore,
Act. A. G., 6th Division,
Army of West Tennessee.


To go back to the battle of Shiloh:

It was here that Gen. Prentiss was captured and Gen. Peabody killed.
The 21st, after losing Gen. Prentiss, was under the command of his
successor, Gen. McKean, who then directed the movements of the 6th
Division. The 1st Brigade of the 6th, to which the 21st was attached,
was commanded, after Gen. Peabody, by Gen. McArthur.

The gallant 21st had no time to rest and recuperate after its severe
fight at Shiloh. Under Gen. Halleck, who succeeded Gen. Grant after
the Shiloh engagement, the regiment took an active part in the siege
of Corinth. On the 30th of April began the march on this formidable
Confederate stronghold. It was fighting, advancing and building
breastworks, until the enemy finally evacuated the town and our
victorious soldiers entered, on the 29th day of May, 1862.

The regiment laid around Corinth until about June 10th, when it was
taken to Chewalla, Tennessee, about ten miles away, on the Memphis &
Charleston R. R. Here they did light guard duty and enjoyed a well
deserved rest until August 30th. The country was picturesque and
beautiful and abounded in fruits of all kinds; but even here the 21st
had its troubles and trials. Small pox broke out in the camp. More
than seventy cases were on hand at one time - and those not afflicted
or doing guard duty had to take their turns at nursing their comrades.
But the malady finally run its course, after leaving a death list of
thirty-odd men. On leaving Chewalla, the regiment returned to Corinth
and was ordered, on September 10th, to Kossuth, Mississippi, for
outpost duty; but in a few days was ordered back to Corinth, reaching
there on the morning of the 3d of October.

The regiment had just got settled in its tents, on the morning of the
3d of October, on its return from Kossuth, when the bugle call to arms
summoned the men to rush out and fall into line of battle. The battle
of Corinth began about daylight, and the men of the 21st were in the
midst of it. The report of Col. Moore, here published, shows the part
the 21st took in the engagement:


COL. MOORE’S REPORT.

HEADQUARTERS 21ST MO. INFANTRY VOLS., }
1ST BRIGADE, 6TH DIVISION. }
CORINTH, MISS., OCTOBER 17, 1862. }

CAPT. J. BATES DICKERSON,
Ass’t Adjt. Gen. 1st and 2d Brigades, 6th Division.

CAPTAIN: - I have the honor to report the part taken by the 21st Mo.
Vols, in the engagement before Corinth, Miss., October 3 and 4, 1862.
On the afternoon of Oct. 2, 1862, I was relieved from outpost duty
and command of the post of Kossuth, Miss., by Col. Smith, 43d Ohio.
We returned to our camp at Corinth, Miss., the same night, arriving
at 3 o’clock a. m. About 4:30 a. m. we heard artillery fire some
distance to the front; the battalion was formed promptly in line, and
shortly after we were directed to take position upon the Memphis &
Charleston R. R., in support of battery E; here we remained until 9
a. m., when we were ordered to march two miles to the front and take
position upon a high ridge to the left of the Memphis & Charleston
R. R., and upon the extreme left of the line of battle, continuously
with the 16th Wisconsin Vols., of the 6th Division, and two regiments
of Gen. Davie’s Division, who were stationed immediately to the right
of the railroad. We had been in position but a few minutes when the
enemy opened fire on our flank and front. We replied promptly and
continued showing the most determined resistance, the enemy being
in so far superior numbers that we were temporarily driven from the
line. About this time my horse was shot under me, bruising severely
my amputated leg. I here turned the command over to Major Moore,
who, with great gallantry, assisted by the officers of the regiment,
rallied the men and repeatedly drove the enemy from the hill. The
fire to the right became very severe, - the regiment stationed there,
and battery, gave way before the masses of the approaching enemies.
Seeing this, and our men being nearly out of cartridges, having fired
forty rounds, the battalion was ordered to fall back, which was done
in good order and firing. It is with pleasure I notice the bravery of
my field staff and line officers - they were equal to the emergency.
Corporal Jesse Roberts, Company I, 21st Mo. Inf. Vols., showed great
bravery; he gallantly seized the colors (after Color Sergeant had
fallen back), causing great enthusiasm among the men. Respectfully,
your obedient servant,

D. MOORE,
Col. Com’d’g 21st Mo. Inft. Vols.


MAJ. ED. MOORE’S REPORT.

HEADQUARTERS 21ST MO. INFANTRY VOLS. }
OCTOBER 18, 1862. }

LIEUT. R. REES,
Adjt. 21st Mo. Infantry Vols.

SIR: - I have the honor to report the part taken by the 21st Mo.
Vol. Infantry Regiment in the Battle of Corinth, Miss., on Friday
and Saturday, the 3d and 4th of October, 1862. After Col. Moore,
commanding the regiment, was carried off the field, I assumed the
command. The men were going back from their original position. With
the assistance of the line officers I succeeded in rallying the men,
who went boldly forward to the front and drove the enemy from the
position that we occupied at the commencement of the engagement. As
soon as the position was gained fighting became desperate, our lines
being distant from those of the enemy less than fifty paces. The
command held this ground until the force upon our right, consisting
of artillery and infantry, had given away and was in full retreat.
About this time the enemy was flanking us on our left and dense
columns of infantry pressed us on our front. I ordered the regiment
to retire. In doing so some of our men got scattered. We succeeded
again in rallying the men, and formed on the flanks of a line being
formed by Brig. Gen. McArthur, to construct a temporary breastwork
of logs, and did so; but before completing the same we were ordered
to a position on the extreme left in the vicinity of the seminary.
We were engaged with the enemy while in this position. About 2:30 P.
M., I was ordered to proceed to Battery C and report to Brig. Gen.
McArthur. Having three companies of skirmishers in the rear, under
his direction we scoured the woods but found no enemy excepting a
few stragglers. We then took the south bridge road in the direction
of Mr. Alexander’s, the rebel cavalry fleeing before our advance. We
succeeded in capturing a great number of prisoners, from one of whom
I learned the rebel hospitals were in the vicinity. It was now dark.
I pushed forward and took possession of all property and persons. A
great many prisoners were taken that night and early next morning
trying to escape through the lines. The total number captured,
including the wounded, amounted to nearly 900 officers and men. We
also captured 460 muskets, 400 cartridge boxes and a quantity of
belts, etc. Under the instructions of Brig. Gen. McArthur I remained
at the hospitals with the command until Sunday about noon, when Col.
Moore took command of the regiment. Our loss during the engagement
is one killed, seventeen wounded and six prisoners. I mention with
satisfaction the behavior of the line officers. They used every
exertion to keep their men together and remained with them during the
engagement, thereby setting a good example to the men to do their
duty. During the action a great many of our guns were useless; after
firing fifteen or twenty rounds of ammunition it was impossible to
load them.

I have the honor to be,

Your obedient servant, EDWIN MOORE,
Maj. 21st Mo. Infantry Vols.


At the close of the Corinth engagement the whole number of the regiment
did not exceed 400 men. Over 600 during the period the command had
been in active service had been lost either in battle, sickness or
captured by the enemy. While at Chewalla a detail had been sent home
to muster recruits and a few days after the Corinth fight the whole
regiment, or what was left of it, was furloughed for thirty days.
The men returned home, where they found recruiting offices had been
opened by the detail of men sent from Chewalla, at Memphis and Edina.
North Missouri was still bubbling over with patriotism for the Stars
and Stripes. The tattered and worn condition of the 400 survivors of
the 21st, with their battle torn flag, gave a new impetus to the war


1 3

Online LibraryVariousThe 21st Missouri Regiment Infantry Veteran Volunteers → online text (page 1 of 3)