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4th Arkansas Infantry Battalion
Flag of Arkansas
Arkansas state flag
Country Confederate States of America
Branch Infantry
Allegiance CSA Flag of the Confederate States of America (1861–1863)
Service history
Active 1861 to 1862
Battles Battle of Island No. 10

Battle of Farmington,

Kentucky Campaign

Battle of Richmond

Battle of Murfreesboro

Battle of Jackson

Commanders
Insignia

The 4th Battalion, Arkansas Infantry (1861–1865) was a Confederate Army infantry Battalion during the American Civil War. The battalion served in the same brigade and was later consolidated with the 4th Arkansas Infantry Regiment, but units began as completely separate and unrelated organizations.

OrganizationEdit

4th Infantry Battalion was organized at Little Rock, Arkansas, on November 10, 1861, with five companies, from Clark, Prairie, Pulaski and White counties. The battalion was composed of the following companies:.[1]

  • Company A, from Pulaski County, commanded by Captain Thomas F. Murff.[2]
  • Company B, from Prairie County, commanded by Captain Thomas J. Payne.[3]
  • Company C, from Clark County, commanded by Captain Samuel O. Cloud.[4]
  • Company D, The "Magruder Guards", from Pulaski County, commanded by Captain F. W. Hoardly. This unit was detached to the Artillery during the engagement at Island No. 10 and became Company H, 1st Tennessee Heavy Artillery.[5]
  • Company E, from White County, commanded by Captain J. M. Moore.[6]

Lieutenant Colonel Francis A. Terry, and Majors John McKay and Jesse A. Ross were in command.[7][8]

BattlesEdit

The battalion was assigned to the defenses of Columbus, Kentucky, then to Island No. 10. Captain Frederick William Hoadley's Company D was detached at Island No. 10, given charge of a battery of heavy guns and reorganized as Company H, 1st Tennessee Heavy Artillery. Company D was captured at the fall of Island No. 10 on Apr. 6-7, 1862, and exchanged later that summer, where they manned the water batteries at Vicksburg with the rest of the 10th Tennessee Artillery, and were surrendered again with the Vicksburg garrison after the siege of that place.[9]

The remainder of the battalion was stationed at Tiptonville at the time of the surrender of Island No. 10 and managed to escape by wading through the river's overflow to the transport Jeff Davis, on which they floated in the dark down to Fort Pillow, TN.[1][9] Writing from the units station at Corinth Mississippi, on May 11, 1862, Captain T. J. Payne, of Company B, wrote home describing the units condition:[10]

All Rolls, Clothing Book and all papers necessary to show the accounts current lost unavoidably. My trunk was left with a citizen and may yet be recovered at some distant day. Some of the company have drawn their full allowance of clothing for six months, others comparatively none. Some data as to deaths &c may be obtained from letters addressed to the relatives of those who died when I return home.

The battalion was then sent to Fort Pillow, Tennessee, until after the battle of Shiloh, when it was sent to Corinth, Mississippi, and became part Brigadier General Evander McNair's brigade of the Confederate Army of Tennessee. At Corinth, the battalion was reorganized under Maj. T.F. Murff, and participated in the Corinth Campaign from April through June of that year. McNair's brigade included the following Arkansas units, the 1st and 2nd Arkansas Mounted Rifles (dismounted), 4th and 13th Arkansas Infantry Regiments, 4th Arkansas Infantry Battalion, and Humphreys' battery of artillery.[11] The battalion's stations as reported on the muster rolls were as follows:[10]

31 Dec 1861 -- Columbus, Kentucky.
28 Feb 1862 -- Corinth, Mississippi.
30 Apr 1862 -- Camp Priceville, near Tupelo, Mississippi.
30 Jun 1862 -- Near Chattanooga, Tennessee.
31 Aug 1862 -- Loudon, Tennessee.
31 Oct 1862 -- Loudon, Tennessee.
31 Dec 1862 -- Shelbyville, Tennessee.
28 Feb 1863 -- Shelbyville, Tennessee.
30 Apr 1863 -- Shelbyville, Tennessee.
30 Jun 1863 -- Camp in the Field, near Livingston, Mississippi.
31 Aug 1863 -- Meridian, Mississippi.
31 Oct 1863 -- Brandon, Mississippi.

During the Kentucky Campaign, McNair's brigade was assigned to Churchill's division, under the overall command of General Kirby Smith.[11] General Smith pushed rapidly into the bluegrass region of Kentucky, and defeated the Union army at the Battle of Richmond. In the desperate battle that occurred there, McNair's brigade turned the enemy's right and contributed to the rout that followed.[8][11]

The 4th Arkansas Battalion and 4th Arkansas Regiment operated together until after the Battle of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, on December 21, 1862, when the battalion, severely understrength because of battle losses, was consolidated into the 4th Arkansas Regiment. During the Battle of Murfreesboro, McNair's brigade took part in the brilliant charge of McCown's division, which, aided by the Divisions of Withers and Cheatham, drove the Federal right a distance of between three and four miles, bending it back upon the center, until the line was at right angles to its original position.[11] In accordance with Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General's Office Order Number 131,[12] four soldiers of the battalion were recognized for courage and good conduct on the field for the Battle of Murfreesboro[13]

General Orders, No. 131, Adjutant-General's Office, Richmond, Va.
Roll of Honor, Murfreesboro, December 31, 1862
Fourth Arkansas Battalion
Private James Vines, Co. A (killed).
Corporal L. Heggie, Co. B (killed).
Private George W. Ayler, Co. C.
Private C. G. Warren, Co. E.[14]

ConsolidationEdit

By late August 1863, losses had forced the consolidation of the 4th Arkansas with other depleted Arkansas regiments. The 4th was consolidated with the remnants of the 31st Arkansas Infantry Regiment and the 4th Arkansas Infantry Battalion. The survivors of the battalion served in the 4th Arkansas Infantry Regiment to the end of the war. Companies C and D of the 4th Arkansas formed one company, under the company of Captain Coatney. Companies F; G; H; and I of the same regiment into one company, under the command of Captain Lavender. All companies of the 31st were consolidated into two companies. Colonel H.G. Bunn, of the 4th Arkansas commanded the consolidated regiment.[8]

The 4th Arkansas Infantry Battalion took part in the following battles as a separate command prior to its formal consolidation with the 4th Arkansas Infantry Regiment:[15]

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 Gerdes, Edward G.," 4TH BATTALION ARKANSAS INFANTRY", Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Page, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/4btninf_f&s.html
  2. Gerdes, Edward G.,"COMPANY A, 4TH BATTALION ARKANSAS INFANTRY", Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Page, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/4btncoa.html
  3. Gerdes, Edward G.,"COMPANY B, 4TH BATTALION ARKANSAS INFANTRY", Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Page, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/4btncob.html
  4. Gerdes, Edward G.,"COMPANY C, 4TH BATTALION ARKANSAS INFANTRY", Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Page, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/4btncoc.html
  5. Gerdes, Edward G.,"COMPANY D, 4TH BATTALION ARKANSAS INFANTRY", Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Page, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/4btncod.html
  6. Gerdes, Edward G.,"COMPANY E, 4TH BATTALION ARKANSAS INFANTRY", Edward G. Gerdes Civil War Page, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://www.couchgenweb.com/civilwar/4btncoe.html
  7. United States. War Dept. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 20, In Two Parts. Part 1, Reports., Book, 1887, Page 660; digital images, (http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth154629 : accessed February 02, 2012), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, http://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries, Denton, Texas.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 National Park Service, Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System, Confederate Arkansas Troops, 25th Regiment, Arkansas Infantry, Accessed 27 January 2011, http://www.civilwar.nps.gov/cwss/regiments.cfm
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Arkansas Confederate Regimental Histories". Internet Archive Wayback Machine. http://web.archive.org/web/20071212052703/http://asms.k12.ar.us/armem/welch/ar_infy.htm. Retrieved May 24, 2012. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 Howerton, Bryan R., "4th Arkansas Battalion", Arkansas in the Civil War Message Board, Posted 13 December 2006, Accessed 20 May 2012, http://history-sites.com/cgi-bin/bbs53x/arcwmb/arch_config.pl?read=14126
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Hempstead, Fay, "A Pictorial History of Arkansas" St. Louis and New York, N. D. Thompson publishing company, 1890, Call number: 9197481, Page 394, Accessed 29 August 2011, http://www.archive.org/stream/pictorialhistory00hemp#page/394/mode/2up
  12. United States. War Dept. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 20, In Two Parts. Part 1, Reports., Book, 1887; digital images, (http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth154629/m1/982/?q=McGregor : accessed June 29, 2012), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, http://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries, Denton, Texas.
  13. United States. War Dept. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 20, In Two Parts. Part 1, Reports., Book, 1887, Page 974; digital images, (http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth154629 : accessed 7 February 2012), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, http://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries, Denton, Texas.
  14. United States. War Dept. The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union And Confederate Armies. Series 1, Volume 20, In Two Parts. Part 1, Reports., Book, 1887, Page 974; digital images, (http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth154629 : accessed February 07, 2012), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, http://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries, Denton, Texas
  15. Sikakis, Stewart, Compendium of the Confederate Armies, Florida and Arkansas, Facts on File, Inc., 1992, ISBN 978-0-8160-2288-5, page 75
  16. Hawkins, Anthony "Of Savage Fury", Hawkins Historical Publications, 20 May 2012, http://www.ofsavagefury.com/

External links

See alsoEdit

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