James A. Drury
1823 - 1907
James is the s/o Benedict Drury, Grand s/o Bernard Drury and Great grand s/o Philip Drury and Emerentia "Ann" Newton
This article furnished by 2nd great grandson Luke J. Scheer Jr., June 18, 2006
Unlike his sisters and brothers, James Alexander preferred work to school, and had little education of a formal kind. Of his younger days he told of traveling by mule back with his sister Maria as she journeyed to enter the convent at Nazareth, Ky. Maria entered that convent July 20, 1847, becoming Sister Benedicta. A second sister, Mary Jane entered the same Sisters of Charity convent on Nov. 3, 1847, becoming Sister Blandina.
In Henderson County, Kentucky on December 16, 1849 James, then 26
married Mary Ann Mattingly, the 17 year old daughter of William Charles
and Teresa Girten Mattingly. This marriage is one of two where
family relationships interlock. Leo Joseph Braddock, who also married
one of the Mattingly girls, was an older brother of the Francis P.
Braddock that later married a daughter of James Alexander Drury.
James A. Drury
seems that James Drury did coal
mining and saw mill work in addition to farming. The September, 1850 census
records show he and Mary Ann living next to her parents, probably on property
of Mary Ann’s father.
In short order children arrived: Nancy Ann was born
December 18, 1850, 2 days after her parents first anniversary.
A son, William Benedict, entered the household 28 months later on April
9, 1852. After twenty-three months, Joseph Henry arrived on March 6, 1854. It
was another 42 months before Nancy, nearly seven years old welcomed a sister,
Martha Helen on September 4, 1857.
A third daughter, Mary Theresa arrived Dec 18, 1859
after a 27 month interval. Sixth
in the growing brood, 29 months later, was James Leonard, born May 13, 1862.
With the Civil War under way for nearly a year and
sympathetic to the Southern view, James
Alexander Drury, at age 39, enlisted in the Confederate Army, August 19,
1862. It is possible that the
photo above was taken at that time by a traveling photographer who followed
Since it is known from the Will of his father,
Benedict W. Drury, that James’ maternal grandparents possessed slaves, it
could be presumed that such a heritage might have contributed to James’ willingness to support the Confederacy during the civil
war. Equal, if not greater, importance could have been the frequent
antagonistic occupancy of his community by Union forces that sought to keep
Kentucky from truly joining the Confederacy.
Like many of his southern brethren, James
left his family (Mary Ann and their 7 children ranging in age from nearly 11
years to 3 months). James, with
relatives Charles Thomas Girten, Valentine Austin Girten, (brothers and 1st
cousins of Mary Ann) and brother-in-law Leonard Mattingly enlisted with Adam
R. (Stovepipe) Johnson’s band, then known as the Breckenridge Guards. Later,
as the units’ effectiveness was recognized, they were joined with the highly
regarded Confederate Cavalry raider, John Hunt Morgan. Thereafter,
Breckenridge Guards came to be known as the 10th Regiment Kentucky Partisan
Rangers, commanded by Colonel Adam R Johnson. All joined Company F within a
few weeks of each other, beginning with Drury and Mattingly on Aug 19, 1862,
at Union Co. KY.
Also, serving with James,
but in Company G, was Francis Sylvester, his youngest brother, then 23 years
1st cousin, James Hamilton Drury, joined as a member of
either Company F or G, depending on the source of information.
Additionally, a few days earlier
than James, on August 15, 1862,
another brother–in-law, 30 year old, Leo Joseph Braddock,
joined Company F. In all, seven members of the extended family served in the
same Regiment. All were the rank
of Private, entitling them to monthly pay of $11, raised to $18 in June 1864.
The unit saw action in Kentucky and
Tennessee and acted as a guide for General J. H. Morgan on his raids into
Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio.
to inquiries by G. L. Drury, James served in the same company with Mr. Bob
Lynn, then the only surviving Confederate in Union County in 1936. Veteran
Lynn told Mr. Drury that he remembered James
A. Drury very well, mentioning that during the war service, James had the nickname of "Penny".
We only know with
indisputable confidence of one battle in which Drury
participated: the action in the vicinity of Cynthiana, Kentucky, where he was
wounded and captured. However,
given his time in active service, it is highly probable that he, claiming to
have served continuously under the command of Col. Adam R. Johnson,
participated in one or more actions that are later described.
From records we know of numerous locations where James
Drury’s 1st Cousin fought. It’s assumed that most, if not
all of the “clan” participated in the same collisions between North and
after escaping from the Ohio Penitentiary, in November, 1863, after failure of
the Ohio raid, took his command to Abingdon, Virginia. There they regrouped
and although short on weapons, horses and clothing, Morgan left Virginia with
2,700 men on May 30, 1864, and rode into Kentucky.
June 8th, Morgan entered Mount Sterling and captured over 300 prisoners.
Morgan’s Raiders however were not the same disciplined command as before.
Mount Sterling was looted and the bank robbed of $70,000. The Rebels then
headed for Lexington, to procure Federal supplies for those of his command who
Hundreds of cords of wood at the
Kentucky Central Railroad building near the Lunatic Asylum were set on fire,
and, as Coleman records in “Lexington During the Civil War”, one
Confederate soldier recalled "though we had but four buildings burning
they were nigh circled half the town and the illumination suggested the
appearance of a general conflagration." According to Coleman, Reverend
Pratt, a native of Lexington, wrote in his diary, "It looked frightful
and we feared the town would be set on fire. The federal forces retired to
Fort Clay and commenced throwing shells over the town. It was frightful to see
those missiles of death whizzing over our heads."
Morgan's men, tired and hungry,
looted Lexington. Coleman also quotes a contemporary account from The Observer
and Reporter, a local newspaper, which stated that the raiders "proceeded
to help themselves to whatever they wanted, and did so unstintingly. They
broke open nearly all the clothing and hat stores in town together with Mr.
Spencer's saddelry establishment from which they took everything they
desired." Although Morgan and his men left town after a few hours, Mr.
John Clay lost about $25,000.00 worth of fine horses to Morgan, and Morgan's
men also took $3,000.00 in gold and over $10,000.00 from the Branch
Bank of Kentucky. Upon leaving Lexington, Morgan rode north to Cynthiana.
Brig. Gen. Morgan approached
Cynthiana with 1,200 men, on June 11, 1864, at dawn. Col. Conrad Garis, with
the 168th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry and some home guard troops, about
300 men altogether, constituted the Union forces at Cynthiana. Morgan divided
his men into three columns, surrounded the town and launched an attack at the
covered bridge, driving the Union forces back towards the depot and north
along the railroad. The Rebels set fire to the town, destroying many buildings
and some of the Union troops.
As the fighting flared in
Cynthiana, another Union force, about 750 men of the 171st Ohio National Guard
under the command of Brig. Gen. Edward Hobson, arrived by train about a mile
north of the Cynthiana at Kellar’s Bridge. Morgan trapped this Union force
of relatively inexperienced infantry in a meander of the Licking River.
After nearly 6 hours of fighting, Morgan forced Hobson to surrender.
Eventually, Morgan had about 1,300 Union prisoners of war camping with him
overnight in the line of battle. The captured ammunition supplies, although
suitable for his prisoners mostly musket weaponry, was useless for the more
modern Enfield rifles carried by Morgan’s men.
Morgan’s telegraphed report of the days event’s expressed concern
over an urgent need to find proper ammunition for his troops before another
sizable engagement with the Union forces.
It was at Cynthiana, Kentucky, according to official records, but more
likely nearer Belmont,
KY, during the retreat to Cynthiana, that Grandpa
Drury was wounded and captured. Afterwards,
he was sent to Camp Chase.
the war wore on, conditions became worse. Shoddy barracks, low muddy ground,
open latrines, aboveground open cisterns, and a brief smallpox outbreak
excited U.S. Sanitary Commission agents who were already demanding reform.
Original facilities for 3,500-4,000 men were jammed with close to 7,000. Since
parole strictures prohibited service against the Confederacy, many Federals
had surrendered believing they would be paroled and sent home. Some parolees,
assigned to guard duty at Federal prison camps, were bitter, and rumors
increased of maltreatment of prisoners at Camp Chase and elsewhere.
the end of hostilities, Union parolee guards were transferred to service in
the Indian Wars, some sewage modifications were made, and prisoners were put
to work improving barracks and facilities. Prisoner laborers also built
larger, stronger fences for their own confinement, a questionable assignment
under international law governing prisoners of war. Barracks rebuilt for 7,000
soon overflowed, and crowding and health conditions were never resolved. As
many as 10,000 prisoners were reputedly confined there by the time of the
THE WAR ENDS FOR JAMES A. DRURY
do show that James was wounded and
captured, June 12, 1864, at Cynthiana, KY, and sent to Camp Chase, Ohio, where
he was held until his release, May 15, 1865, the month after the end of the
conflict. It was during the
war or possibly while a prisoner, that James
Drury contracted ague (malaria).
Pension application papers for James A.
Drury state that he had been shot in the arm and shoulder in the Cynthiana
conflict. There is no mention of a chest wound. His son, James Thomas (Uncle
Tom) and many grandchildren, in later years, told a great-grandson, Luke
Scheer, Sr, of rubbing liniment on James’
left shoulder to relieve the discomfort of a bullet that he received at
“Chickamauga.” It had entered
his body through the right nipple and was never removed. He told Grandson James W., son of Joseph Henry that the
battles of Belmont and Vicksburg were his worst of the Civil War.
Jas. A. Drury, Pvt. Co. F. 10 Regt. KY Cav.
of Allegiance to the United States, subscribed and sworn to at Camp Chase,
Ohio, May 15, 1865. Place of
residence Union Co., Ky.
Captured: Cynthiana, KY When
June 12, 1863.
year of capture being incorrect is not unusual since the “official
records” are actually transcriptions from original documents. Correct year
we do not know how James returned
to his home we can reasonably believe that his experience was much like that
of other released prisoners, although he was likely accompanied by others from
Kentucky. Research shows that such individuals, or groups, were often provided
with a single shot, black powder rifle, probably a musket, then left to their
own devices to find their way home.
 Drury, James Hamilton Private, Company F, 10th Kentucky Cavalry enlisted in Union County on Aug. 19, 1862. After his return home at the close of the war, he was arrested, taken to Henderson and tried for his life. Adam R. Johnson was contacted by some of his men in Kentucky, who complained that the Yankees were attempting to charge them with horse stealing during the war. Johnson returned to Kentucky and testified that they were enlisted men and under orders to impress horses. The cases were dismissed.
 Three other Braddock family members participated in the Civil War, albeit on the Union Side. Two of Leo’s First cousins, both sons of Michael & Sarah Braddock, were Union soldiers. Stephen, a private with the 1st WV Light Artillery, Battery C, was killed in action at Gettysburg, July 2, 1863. Francis Austin serving as a private, 148th Regiment, Ohio Infantry, from May 17, 1864 to Sept. 14, 1864, was spared the ordeal of combat. Leo’s stepbrother Charles Malone, who remained in Union County throughout the war, seems to have been an intelligence agent, AKA spy, for the Union forces. According to family tradition Malone was instrumental in securing Leo’s, August 17, 1863, release on bond after being captured at Henderson, KY.
Belmont, KY, the smaller of the two communities, is located on the west side
of the Licking River that separates it from Cynthiana. Apparently, James
happened to be somewhere along the Belmont side of the river.
While we do not know how James returned to his home we can reasonably believe that his experience was much like that of other released prisoners, although he was likely accompanied by others from Kentucky. Research shows that such individuals, or groups, were often provided with a single shot, black powder rifle, probably a musket, then left to their own devices to find their way home.
Surely James Drury's journey was less than two
months, since his seventh child, James Thomas (Uncle Tom) mentioned
elsewhere in this document arrived April 19, 1866.
James Drury joined the ranks of Father-in-law when his eldest, Nancy Ann, left the household in 1867, to become a barely 16 year old bride of the not yet 21 year old Francis Patrick Braddock on February 5 1867.
Three more children came to James and Mary Ann in the usual 2+ year spacing: Sarah Ellen, about April 15, 1868; Frances Irene on September 26, 1870, and Martin John, March 30, 1873.
The above picture of Mary Ann Mattingly Drury was taken in the summer or fall of 1873.
In 1875, James' spouse, Mary Ann, died suddenly of a heart attack while at their home, 5 mi. East of Morganfield. A family tradition is that Mary Ann was a favorite of her father and that the news of her death was kept from her ailing father. .
her father, William C. Mattingly, eventually guessed the reason for his
daughter’s absence from his bedside and died shortly afterwards, about March
1876. Soon after Mary Ann's
death, James arranged for his younger
children to live with older siblings, or other relations.
For a time one of his daughters, Helen, lived with her
Mattingly grandparents, but shortly ran away and never returned. Each night the
girls had wool carding, etc. to do before going to bed in their cabin.
John Thomas, then about 8 years old went to his Uncle
Mart (John Martin) Mattingly’s for 4 years, then lived with his older brother
Joe until he was 18 or 19.
a short time, maybe a year, James Drury,
as a widower, continued to live on the farm (Bert Robinson Place) east of
Morganfield where he had been a tenant for about 20 years. His son James Thomas
(Uncle Tom) told in 1950 that James
sold out a year after the death of his spouse and moved in with various siblings
and children, changing families often. James
remained in Kentucky until about 1886 then went to live with his daughter Sally
(Sarah Ellen) in Missouri for a short while.
Then Tom took him in for a few years.
It was later, about 1890-91, that Tom broke his shoulder and sent his dad
out to Kansas to live with Nancy.
1880 census lists the youngest daughter, Frances Irene, as living with her
sister Martha Helen and family in Missouri before her dad was there.
Before James went to live with
his bachelor son, Frances Irene, following the death of Martha likely went to be
with either Nancy, or Mary Teresa in Kansas. Frances Irene’s presence prior to
1891 is evidenced by her marriage to Ben Beseau, a St. Marys, Kansas, native
there on October 21 1891. When the
Braddocks moved to Mississippi, about 1892, James joined with his son, Joseph Henry in Morganfield and lived
there about 3 years. On January 1,
1896, he moved with son Joseph and family to SE Missouri, not far from bachelor
sons Tom & Martin. Later,
he batched with Tom & Martin before rejoining Nancy in Mississippi before
the 1900 census.
Grandchildren there recalled that James
was hard of hearing
and quick tempered. John A.
Braddock, born 1894, recalls that Grampa
Drury delighted in inducing him, as a youngster, to smoke tobacco. Also
described, was that when particularly irritated, grandpa would take his cane,
swing it over his shoulder and with belongings pendant thereon, would leave for
awhile. He'd walk trails and railroad tracks to distant Vicksburg, where he
would stay for a period at the Confederate Soldier's Home before returning.
He first entered the Home in 1904 to obtain treatment for a chronic boil.
He suffered during his later years from asthma and that likely prompted
1905 he entered the Confederate Soldier's Home at Vicksburg to eventually die
there, September 30, 1907. A clipping from an unknown paper, contained in the
Sisters of Charity Mother House archives of James' sisters, reads:
afternoon, James A. Drury, aged 84
years, one of the Confederate veterans from Yazoo City, who has been an inmate
of the annex for some time, breathed his last.
Deceased will be interred this afternoon from Fisher's parlor at 4
o'clock, and from St. Paul's Catholic Church at 4:30 o'clock.
is another of those beloved heroes, who has passed over the river to his
everlasting reward, and for whom all will ever have a reverence and respect,
commensurate with the valor and devotion with which they ever performed duty to
their country in war, as they have lived as citizens honoring home and country
A transcription of Fisher’s
funeral parlor records reads:
“Drury, James A. September 30,1907; To one
coffin, Grave, H. Board,
of Hearse and Services $14.50: Bz. 3 Hacks $9.00--$23.50”
A letter from St Paul’s Church, Vicksburg, MS, provides
"James A. Drury, age 80 (sic), native of Yazoo City, MS., died of
'congestion' on October 1, 1907, and was buried by Fr. J. J. Mallin in Cedar
Hill Cemetery, Vicksburg, MS."
great grandson, Luke Scheer, Sr, reported having been to the gravesite, shown
there by one of James’s
granddaughters, wrote that it was unmarked.
No record was made of its location and Cemetery Sexton’s records from
the period have been lost, therefore the actual gravesite is unknown.
THE MYSTERY IS
WHAT ELSE JAMES A. DRURY MIGHT HAVE BEEN DOING IN THE WAR?
Drury, in a letter to his great nephew Luke Scheer, Sr, related that his
father, James Drury, had said that
Vicksburg had been his toughest battle.
Examination of the list of captured and paroled
Confederates does not give any names associated with Johnson’s 10th
Kentucky Cavalry. What also is to be made of the family tradition that James
Drury was present at Chickamauga or Chattanooga?” A son related that James’
hearing had been damaged at Chickamauga. A grandson had told that James
had been wounded in the chest at Chickamauga.
We do have, referring to the unit, according to a Girten researcher:
Kentucky Adjutant General's Report states;
Tenn., Dec. 31, 1862 - This Company was raised in Union County, Ky., and
participated in most of the engagements which gave the reputation to the
Regiment, which it now enjoys, it was in the battle of Donelson-Rolling Mills,
Madisonville, Uniontown, Owensboro, Geiger' s Lake and several others of minor
importance. It was with General Morgan in his last expedition to Kentucky, and
participated in the engagements at Elizabethtown, Bacon Creek and Muldrough's
James and Francis Drury, Leo Braddock,
the Girten brothers and Mattinglys were members of Col. Adam R. Johnson’s,
10th Kentucky Partisan Rangers, therefore we must also trace the adventures of
the 10th Cavalry throughout the period that James Drury would have been a member.
10th took part in Morgan's famous Christmas raid and ill-fated Indiana-Ohio
raid. While taking part in the latter, the vast majority of the regiment were
captured and imprisoned, many for the remainder of the war.
men not captured on Morgan's Indiana-Ohio raid subsequently served in a variety
of units including Dortch’s 2d Battalion Kentucky Cavalry, the 8th Kentucky
Mounted Infantry, Chenoweth's 15th Kentucky Cavalry, and Sypert's 16th Kentucky
THE REST OF THE STORY
James Drury and his relatives, along with other recent recruits
didn’t have to wait long to see action. Just two weeks after joining with Adam
Johnson, it appears that the
comrades in arms would have been among those extending Confederate-style
Kentuckian hospitality to their Union antagonists.
RAID ON UNIONTOWN – September 1, 1862
In the later part
of August, Johnson’s force was nearly 700 strong and faced with three
immediate problems: ammunition and equipment for his men, Uniontown having been
placed under Martial Law by a Federal Regiment of 300 Indiana Militia,
commanded by Col. Farrow and continuing the harassment of Northern Forces.
Farrow, like Hanson in Henderson, had committed many depredations on the
community, not the least of which was extracting $50,000 in bonds and over
$6,000 in cash from the population under threat of instant imprisonment.
everything with a raid, retaking Uniontown, capturing badly needed materials and
forcing the surrender of the occupying Federal forces. The Federals were paroled
and allowed to go north, minus anything of military value.
Federal equipment not needed by Johnson was burned
next moving on Henderson, due to condition of his men’s mounts and expected
pressure by Shackelford’s stronger forces, Johnson ordered the majority of his
men to scatter through the country and
rendezvous at a later time and place.
from a Transcription of a reprint “Union County, Past & Present, Publisher
The “battle” of Geiger’s Lake began when Adam R. Johnson, with
about one hundred men, mostly Union and Henderson County Boys in training, made
the preceding dash upon Uniontown and captured about nine hundred stands of
badly needed arms. Johnson and his men retired to Geiger’s Lake and encamped.
Gen. J. M. Shackelford, who was lying at Caseyville with a considerable
force of Federal Troops, mostly infantry, started out to the lake for the
purpose of capturing the entire force. James
Wathen, of Company G, First Kentucky Confederate Cavalry and in civil life a
brick mason of DeKoven, learned of Shackleford’s designs and rode in hot haste
to the Confederate camp to give the alarm.
The ever-ready Johnson immediately dispatched most of his available force
out on the road to meet General Shackleford. Bob Martin, Johnson’s second in
command, had charge of the detachment which numbered about eighty men.
This left a small force in the camp. One report says 15 men, another says
fifty, but Ruben Reasor (1834-1927), who related the details of this story, says
there were twenty-eight, counting Adam Johnson.
Most of these men, including Johnson, stayed behind on account of
illness. Shackleford, however, did not approach the camp in the direction that
Martin had anticipated and, consequently, he surprised the Confederates left
behind. Johnson, knowing the limitations of his small force, had given his men
all the loaded guns they could carry and took shelter on the opposite side of
the lake. When Johnson saw the Federal troops enter the abandoned camp and began
to pillage, his troops opened heavy fire. The Federals quickly broke and fled.
Shackleford, quickly rallying his men, returned toward Johnson’s former
In the meantime, Martin, hearing the firing, headed toward the camp and
advanced alone to reconnoiter the enemy’s position. His horse was shot from
under him and he returned to his men, remounted and led them against the Federal
troops. Shackleford was again
advancing upon the vacated camp along the shore of the lake and Martin was
advancing toward it from the opposite direction. Johnson, with his contingent,
was still across the lake, expecting pursuit by the Federals.
While this was taking place, a
soldier named Robinson came into camp and, seeing all of his comrades gone,
supposed that very soon the Federals would enter and capture all the arms.
He thereupon started throwing guns into the lake.
The lake bank was rather steep and it was quite simple to pitch the
muskets into the water as they were stacked near by.
When Martin and his men came up,
they brought their sole artillery piece into play against the advancing army.
Loading the cannon to the muzzle with mini-balls and waiting until the last
possible moment to fire, havoc ensued among the advancing Federals.
With Martin’s men protected by
their position under the bank and Johnson’s hidden by brush on the opposite side of the lake, they poured such
rapid and telling volleys upon the Federal force that it was permanently routed
and fled in confusion to Caseyville. It
was in this engagement that General Shackelford was shot in the heel as his army
retreated. Johnson’s memoirs admits to the loss of one Confederate, with no
mention of wounded.
DRURY AT VICKSBURG September 1862
mere mention of Vicksburg in the context of the Civil War immediately brings to
mind the Siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi. Considerable study of "The
Gibraltar of the Confederacy" and its surrender on July 4, 1863, failed to
find even a faint whiff of circumstantial evidence to suggest that any of the
members of Adam Johnson’s or Morgan’s previous command were present. Simply
put, there is nothing to indicate
that James Alexander Drury was ever
present at Vicksburg, Mississippi, during the Civil War.
However, there is a Vicksburg, KY,
in Logan County, about 5 Miles NE of Smithland at the mouth of the Cumberland
River and 45 miles SW of Union County. While
Vicksburg, KY, is today little more than a boat ramp on the Cumberland river it
may have been something more in the 1860’s since there remains an old cemetery
in the area. : Possibly, it was a ferry crossing, if not a place of seasonal
fording? Without any reliable reports of battles, skirmishes or even minor
encounters, naming Vicksburg, KY, as the scene of fighting, family genealogists
have only circumstantial evidence for a guide.
The tantalizing and compelling
having told family of having been in a ruckus at Vicksburg
B. The existence of Vicksburg, KY,
C. A Union Supply Depot at nearby Smithland containing a substantial number of horses.
D. A possible smoking gun, of sorts, in the form of a telegram to Gen. Grant, USA
“Major Bigney, commanding at Smithland, telegraphs the guerrilla
chief, Johnson, has taken Uniontown and Caseyville and now threatens Smithland.
The major asks for cavalry to attack and pursue. I have directed him to mount
his infantry as far as practicable. It is said that 600 horses are at Smithland
intended for Buell’s army. Ought they not to be removed to safer point, as
they cannot be sent forward”
Could it be that shortly after the
Geiger Lake encounter, a raid was made, horses acquired and Johnson’s force
retired to the vicinity of Vicksburg, KY, for respite from the rigors of combat?
Could it be that the “mounted infantry” met and challenged Johnson’s force
near Vicksburg, KY? Surely, the
Confederates would have had a little scrap with the Federals while availing
themselves of badly needed mounts? And what if, during the ebb and flow of an
ensuing firefight, the relatively new recruit, James happened to find himself in a particularly precarious
predicament; an exceptionally exciting experience that became etched in his mind
as one of his worst.
The author surmises that while definitive proof may never be found
showing that James Drury was at
Vicksburg, KY, the cited circumstantial evidence suggests the possible presence
of the Drury, Mattingly, Braddock, Girten
September 19,1862 Owensboro
– Daviess County
Confederate force of 500 to 700 men executed a morning attack on Owensboro,
killing the Kentuckian commanding the garrison and demanding surrender once they
had surrounded the town. During the
night a Union soldier swam Ohio River to summon help. The next morning,
September 20th, a Regiment of the Indiana State militia crossed the
river and drove the Confederates from the town. The militia force pursued the
retreating Confederates and,
the protection of a roadside ditch, defeated them at Panther Creek, eight miles
South of Owensboro. Casualties: Confederate loss, 36 killed, 70 wounded. USA
loss, 3 killed and 35 wounded.
October - November 1862 The "Reverse" Kentucky Raid
The Battle of Perryville was fought
between Confederate General Braxton Bragg and Union General Don Carlos Buell on
October 8, 1862.
when the army halted at Gum Springs, Morgan turned northward again on a reverse
raid toward Lexington. Reaching the
outskirts of Lexington on October 15, the regiment attacked the 4th Ohio
Cavalry. However, due to miscalculations in the timing of the attack, confusion
reigned and elements of Morgan’s forces fired on each other.
Morgan moved eastward toward Ashland, KY, the home of Henry Clay, which was
occupied by the forces of Union Major Charles B. Seidel. On October 18, John
Morgan and his cavalry surprised Major Seidel at Ashland and captured him and
his command in broad daylight. After outfitting his command with new horses,
colt revolvers and other captured goods, Morgan's men burned the government
stables and railroad depot before leaving the area and headed westward to
Elizabethtown, Greenville, and finally to Hopkinsville in western Kentucky.
There, they met with Colonel Woodward’s Kentucky Cavalry regiment. From
Hopkinsville, the regiment turned south to Tennessee, entering the state on
the 10th Kentucky Cavalry, soon after its organization, had been ordered by
General Braxton Bragg to report to Murfreesboro, Tennessee, where, about
November 4, 1862, the unit was attached to the 2d brigade of Brigadier General
John Hunt Morgan's cavalry division.
Gallatin, Colonel Morgan planned another raid on Edgefield Junction, where
Federal forces had collected hundreds of freight cars.
The raid, which began on November 6, was to be in conjunction with a
diversionary attack south of Nashville by General N. B. Forrest.
However, the attack failed due to a lack of coordination between the
cavalry commands. With this, the
2nd Kentucky continued southward toward Murfreesboro, and was finally ordered
into winter quarters at Fayetteville, Tennessee.
There it rested while Colonel Morgan embarked on a raid at Hartsville,
commanding a Brigade-sized force of Kentucky Cavalry and Infantry regiments.
The 39th Brigade, XIV
Army Corps of the Army of the Cumberland, under Colonel Absalom Moore, was
guarding the Cumberland River crossing at Hartsville to prevent cavalry raids. Under the cover of darkness, Morgan and his men crossed the
river in the early morning of December 7. When
the Kentuckians approached the Union camp, their pickets sounded the alarm and
held their positions until the brigade was in battle line.
The fighting commenced and lasted almost two hours.
One of Moore’s units ran, which caused confusion and helped to force
the Federals to fall back. With the Confederates surrounding them, the Federals
were convinced to surrender. Surrendering
to Morgan’s forces were infantry of the 104th Illinois, 106th and 108th Ohio,
the 2nd Indiana Cavalry, and a battery of the 12th Indiana Artillery.
Federal casualties were listed as 1,855, while the Confederates lost only
149. This action north of
Murfreesboro was a prelude to the cavalry raids by General Forrest into western
Tennessee, and by Morgan into Kentucky during the rest of December and into
the Hartsville victory, General Bragg recommended Colonel Morgan’s promotion
to the rank of Brigadier General. John Hunt Morgan received his commission to
Brigadier General personally from President Davis on December 13, but the
promotion was made retroactive to December 7, the day of the Hartsville Raid.
His brother-in-law, Lt. Colonel Basil W. Duke, was promoted to full
Colonel and given command of the 2nd Kentucky Cavalry. Brig. General Morgan now
commanded a Brigade of 4,000 men that now included the 10th Kentucky led by Col.
Adam R. JOHNSON
During December, the
Federal Army of the Cumberland, commanded by U.S. General Rosecrans, was
stockpiling men, food, and supplies at Nashville for a winter campaign against
the Confederate Army of Tennessee. In
response, General Bragg ordered cavalry raids to disrupt and divert the enemy.
One such raid, covering over 500 Miles in two weeks, was to cut the
enemy’s supply line along the Louisville & Nashville railroad.
This task was given to Morgan’s command. John Allen Wyeth wrote of the
raids beginning "They started with three day's cooked rations. Every man carried
his own ammunition, two extra horse shoes, twelve nails, one blanket in addition to
the saddle blanket, and an oil-cloth or overcoat. With the exception of the
artillery which was double-teamed, there was nothing on wheels."
With the L&N R.R. line being heavily defended,
General Morgan chose the weakest point for this raid -- a pair of trestles at
Muldraugh’s Hill, just north of Elizabethtown, Kentucky.
In preparation, MORGAN divided his
command, with regimental command structures as follows:
First Cavalry Brigade - Colonel Basil W. Duke, Commanding
Lt. Col. J. Hutchinson
Col. Richard M. Gano
Col. LeRoy S. Cluke
4th Kentucky Col.
Palmer's Ga. Battery
Capt. Joseph Palmer
Second Cavalry Brigade - Colonel Wm. C. P. Breckinridge, Commanding
also by Breckinridge
10th Kentucky Col.
Adam R. Johnson
Col. David W. Chenault
Col. Wm. W. Ward
On December 21, the
force rode north from Alexandria, Tennessee on what was to become known in the
annals of the war as the "Christmas Raid".
Through rain and sleet, they moved on toward Thompkinsville and Glasgow,
capturing enemy garrisons along the way.
the 26th, some of the soldiers captured and burned a large railroad
bridge at Bacon Creek (now Bonnieville).
Allan Wyeth, 17, recalled how Upton was taken. “As we struck the railroad at
Upton, we saw several Union soldiers walking along the track, each with his gun
on his shoulder. Under orders, we spurred our horses rapidly forward. Captain
Tom Quirk, pistol in hand, shouted to them to surrender, at the same time firing
over their heads. Before anyone else could shoot, the men threw up their
to the general’s staff was a telegraph operator, an attractive, quick-witted,
clever young man, apparently about 25, named Ellsworth, better known in the
command as “Lightning.’” Earlier in the war, Ellsworth had tapped a
telegraph line, but the crude bypass caused a ticking sound that aroused
suspicion. When questioned by a Union operator down the line, Ellsworth
instantly replied, “OK, lightning,” which meant a storm was interfering with
transmission. The Union soldier bought it and unknowingly supplied Ellsworth
with valuable strategies, and eventually his nickname.
At Upton, ‘Lightning’ tapped into the telegraph line and Morgan concocted a succession of exaggerations for the Union’s benefit. “I sat on the end of a crosstie within a few feet of General Morgan,” Wyeth wrote, “and heard him dictate messages to be sent to General Boyle in Louisville, making inquiries as to the disposition of the Federal forces in Kentucky and telling some awful stories in regard to the large size of his own command and its movements.”
The guise enabled Morgan’s men to march merrily up the L & N toward
Nolin, where another bridge awaited. Destroying rail line and culverts “just
to keep in practice,” the Rebels arrived only to discover a Morgan detachment
under command of Col. Basil Duke had already taken the Nolin garrison in less
time than the battle at Bacon Creek.
the wooden bridge ablaze, the intoxicating confidence of victory allowed
Morgan’s men time to fashion some “neckties,” a trademark of the
general’s campaigns. Soldiers would heat sections of rail line, then bracing
them against a tree, would bend the rail into a horseshoe rendering them useless
to repair crews.
dusk, the biting sleet from Christmas night had given way to clearing skies.
Though still quite cold, troops were warmed by a day of unqualified successes as
they made camp just a few miles from their next target, the largest town on the
march and one protected by more than 600 entrenched Union
Onward to their target, Morgan’s men moved toward Elizabethtown,
battling garrisons along the L&N and destroying, for the third time, the
bridge over Bacon Creek. Arriving
in the vicinity of Elizabethtown, they assailed
652 Union troops under Lt. Col. H. S. Smith, Dec. 27, 1862. Morgan
surrounded the town and placed artillery on the cemetery hill. The Elizabethtown
garrison was destroyed and the Federals surrendered.
next day at the Muldraugh Hill railroad trestles, Morgan attained his goal. Both bridges were destroyed and it was mid-March 1863 before
the Federals were able to restore service on that portion of the L&N R.R.
Having fulfilled its objective, the brigade returned to Confederate lines as
they rode into Smithville, Tennessee on January 5th.
the "Christmas Raid",
they had captured and paroled nearly 2000 of the enemy and destroyed the bridges
over Bacon Creek and at Muldraugh Hill and over 25 miles of track, while
sustaining losses of only 2 killed, 24 wounded, and 64 missing.
raid, however, had come too late to hinder the Federal assault on the Army of
Tennessee. The Battle of
Murfreesboro had been fought on December 31 and January 1 during the time of the
raid, resulting in Confederate defeat and retreat. Upon its return from the
raid, Morgan’s force was given immediate duty covering the flank of the army
as it continued its retreat to Tullahoma, Tennessee.
…’Twas the very reason for the bold march from Tennessee
into Union-held Kentucky in the first place—two colossal railroad bridges just
five miles away on Muldraugh Hill. Both were about 500 feet long and sprang up
from the bottom of the gorge more than 100 feet.
Gen. John Hunt Morgan’s mission to cut the telegraph lines and halt
food and ammunition deliveries by burning railway bridges, while successful to
date, had only hampered Union forces. But, torching the Muldraugh Hill bridges
near Colesburg would devastate the bluecoat’s Civil War cause just as a
vindictive winter loomed on the horizon.
When Morgan’s men broke through a clearing at midmorning Dec. 28, 1862,
the Rebels gazed upon a glorious site. Two bridges sprawled out only a few
hundred yards below them, but so, too, did Fort Sands and Fort Boyle. Though
still under construction, 500 Union soldiers were barricaded to guard the
southern structure, 250 to protect the northern.
A surrender was requested, but predictably rejected.
And so, the familiar Morgan tactic was played out once more. An innovator
in guerrilla warfare, the general traveled lightly and quickly--hence his
nickname "Thunderbolt of the Confederacy"--and used cannon fire to do
most of the work, which kept his casualties to a minimum.
Morgan split his forces, one led by Col. Basil Duke and the other by Col.
William C. P. Breckenridge, and launched simultaneous attacks. Two hours later,
white flags scurried up the fort's flagpoles.
general had "Lightning" Ellsworth tap into the telegraph line. Today
had marked the second time Morgan captured the 71st Indiana Infantry
in recent months, and Morgan simply had to talk to Indiana Governor Oliver
general, a swashbuckling sort, wired to "thank him and ask that he just
send oilcloths and overcoats next time and save him the trouble of making out
paroles," wrote John Allan Wyeth one of the Raiders.
the parole system, prisoner's names were placed on a roll and they were required
to sign oaths promising not to bear arms against the Confederacy until exchanged
for Rebel prisoners. After this, they were set free to return home--minus guns,
overcoats, oilcloths and everything else of value to the Confederates.
was here the 17-year-old Wyeth captured his first prisoner, claiming the
Yankee's newly-issued Enfield rifle, the premier infantry weapon of the day.
gun and its former owner were my first personal captures," Wyeth later
wrote. "And for the unwarlike, and almost absurd, features of this
incident, I relate it now.
our shells made it too hot for the Hoosiers to stay inside the stockade, some of
them, hoping to escape, ran out and hid behind logs and in underbrush of nearby
woods," Wyeth recalled. "When the white flag went up, Gen. Morgan led
the way, all of us on foot, practically sliding down the steep hillside. I was
so close to him that once in the descent when my feet slipped from under me, I
nearly slid between his legs.
we reached the stockade, we were ordered to scour the woods for fugitives,"
Wyeth said. "About 200 or 300 yards from the fort, I came upon a stripling,
who, hearing me approach, jumped up from behind the trunk of a fallen tree and
held up one hand in token of surrender.
seemed no older than myself, a good-looking lad with peachdown cheeks, which had
tears trickling over them. His crying quickly aroused my sympathy, and I tried
to reassure him saying, 'Don't be afraid; nobody shall harm you. You'll be
paroled now and can go home.
he sobbed out, 'I've got a good mother at home; and if I ever get back, I'll
never leave her again.'
time, my own feelings were getting the best of me; and when he mentioned his
mother, the thought of my own overwhelmed me, and I began to cry, too, doing my
best to comfort the poor fellow.
this occurred," Wyeth said, "as we were walking side by side to the
stockade, my war spirit no little dampened, and the pride of my capture about
lost in the sympathy. How often I have recalled to mind this "Comedy of Two
men collected and piled limbs from the forest and debris from the forts at the
base of the mammoth bridges, igniting the fires just as the sun faded into
destruction of this immense network of timber made the most brilliant display of
fireworks I have ever seen," Wyeth recalled. "The flames climbed
swiftly along the timbers until every upright and crosspiece was blazing in
outline, more vividly defined than if it had been strung with Chinese lantern.
"When at last they
were burned through, the flaming beams began to fall, and as the whole structure
came down, the heavens were brilliant with the column of sparks which shot
John Allen Wyeth remarked
that during the return trip from the raid that in one 72 hour period all but 9
were spent in the saddle.
Reflecting the practice of
the Partisan Rangers securing what was of military value and destroying the
rest, it is reported that upon their return to Tennesse, they were better
mounted, better armed and better clothed than when they had left.
Auburntown & Milton, Tenn March
19, General Morgan arrived at Liberty from McMinnville, and that night he
received reports that 2000 infantry and several hundred cavalry commanded by
Colonel A.S. Hall were moving out from Murfreesboro. This Federal force
approached to within five miles of Liberty, but then fell back to Auburntown.
General Morgan decided to attack them at daybreak, and his men were called out.
One of the men, R.L. Thompson, wrote many years later: " While in camp at
Liberty, I remember one morning about two o'clock, while the cold rain was
pouring down, Cooper the buglar gave the boots and saddle call quick and lively.
At the same time pickets from Johnson’s 10th Cavalry
were hotly engaged on the Murfreesboro Pike. We went briskly toward the
sounds of the guns and continued to go until we reached the town of
The Federals had fallen back from Auburntown to Milton, and Morgan was
afraid they would escape without a fight. He therefore sent his men at a gallop
after them; he and his staff followed immediately.
The Union forces had taken a position about a mile west of Milton on a rough, cedar-covered hill. There they were attacked by Morgan's men in a battle which lasted three hours or more. Grigsby's regiment was within fifty yards of the summit when their ammunition ran out; at the same time firing ceased along the entire line as the supply of ammunition was exhausted. General Morgan was furious, as he felt that within a few minutes his men would have captured the entire Federal force. Now they were forced to retire from the field. Morgan wrote to his wife from Liberty: "I have been very fortunate as to escape through another day's very severe fighting and escaped unhurt. The fight lasted nearly the entire day and was very severe. Our loss was very heavy, especially in the officers. Capt. Sale, of Co. E, Duke's regt, was among the killed, making the third Capt. that has been killed in that company." Every man in one company, he said either was wounded or had his clothes riddled by bullets. A total of about three hundred Confederates were killed or wounded. When Morgan's men returned to Liberty, the citizens of Liberty looked upon a sight they would never forget: dead cavalrymen tied to their horses and dead artillerymen strapped on the caisson and gun carriages.
GREAT OHIO RAID
the Army of Tennessee was again in a desperate situation. General Bragg was
forced to divert men to help relieve the Federal siege on the Confederate
bastion at Vicksburg, Mississippi. This left the army short handed to face the
enemy in Tennessee. In order to counter this disadvantage, Bragg sent Morgan on
a diversionary raid to threaten Louisville. And although Bragg had intended for
this mission to be limited to Kentucky, Morgan was determined to strike for
Indiana and eastward into Ohio. He was aware that General Robert E. Lee was
moving his forces into Pennsylvania, and it was Morgan’s intention to link up
with Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia.
Alexander Drury may have been present for at least the Kentucky segment of
When one considers
James being 40 and Francis 26 in 1863
it seems likely that they may have been separated. Basil Duke, brother-in-law of
the raider John Hunt Morgan, wrote that before embarking from Tennessee on the
Ohio raid that Morgan had almost exclusively selected men younger than 26 yr.
old. Younger men, such as Francis, would have been better suited to the hard
riding raid that Morgan was planning
into Indiana and Ohio. It therefore seems
logical that older soldiers such as James Drury might have been detached from Morgan’s command to
remain in Tennessee and made available to others, or granted a furlough prior to
entry into Ohio.
a series of delays, the raid began on July 2, two days prior to the capitulation
of Vicksburg. The columns moved north from Burkesville towards Columbia, with
Johnson’s Brigade being sent to Tebb’s Bend on the Green River to secure the
bridge there. The fight at the Green River Bridge on the 4th of July against the
25th Michigan, commanded by Col. Orlando Moore, resulted in 71 casualties that
Morgan could ill afford to lose. Among those losses were some of Morgan’s
finest officers, including Colonel Chenault of the 11th Kentucky. Rather than
continue the fight, however, the brigade by-passed Tebb’s Bend and continued
north through Campbellsville and on toward Lebanon, Kentucky.
On July 5, both brigades assaulted Lebanon, Marion County seat. The town was being held by the 20th (U.S.) Kentucky Infantry, commanded by Col. Charles Hanson. Colonel Hanson was the brother of General Morgan’s old friend, the late General Roger W. Hanson, who had been killed at the Battle of Murfreesboro.
the third raid on Lebanon, was Morgan’s most devastating. With temporary
command operations located at Myrtledene, the home of Benedict Spalding,
Lebanon, was put to the torch. The courthouse was burned to the ground,
Morgan’s purpose being to destroy treason indictments against some of
his men from the vicinity. All the county
records from 1834 to 1863were
historians believe the destruction of much of Lebanon was possibly in
retaliation for the death of General Morgan's brother.
significance to family genealogists, the courthouse house and its nearly 30
years of vital records, including those applicable to Drury and related
families, were lost.
to the defensive positions in the town that needed to be assaulted, it was
apparent that what was needed was a regiment experienced in street fighting, as
had been done at Augusta. And so, the 2nd Kentucky was called upon by Colonel
Duke. The regiment attacked and carried the day with bitter close-in fighting,
managing to capture 300 prisoners but at the cost of 50 of its men.
the afternoon, the brigades were headed west toward Springfield and Bardstown,
with Federal cavalry in pursuit. Skirting to the west of Louisville, the columns
moved to Brandenburg on the Ohio River, for the planned crossing to Indiana.
There, two steamboats, the "John B.
McCombs" and the "Alice
Dean", were captured and were used to ferry the 2nd Kentucky to the
Indiana shore. A short artillery duel occurred, however, when the Indiana Home
Guard appeared on the north side of the river and opened fire with a 6-pounder
mounted on a wagon carriage. This drew an immediate response from Morgan’s
artillery, which cleared the piece from the opposite shore.
gunboat, the "U.
then appeared and began shelling Morgan’s men on both sides of the river,
drawing another response from the Confederate battery posted on the bluff
overlooking Brandenburg. However, the gunboat suddenly and unexpectedly withdrew
from combat, allowing the entire command to cross safely to Indiana.
a short rest, the command headed north to Corydon, fifteen miles north of the
Ohio River. Although Johnson’s 2nd Brigade led the order of march, out in
front was the 14th Kentucky Cavalry. General Morgan had formed the 14th as a
special command for his brother, Richard, who had recently transferred from
Virginia. Operating with the 14th were the scouts and Company A of the 2nd
south of the town on July 9, the raiders encountered a force of 450 members of
the Harrison County Home Guard, officially designated as the 6th Regiment,
Indiana Legion, under the command of Colonel Lewis Jordan. They had drawn a
defensive battle line behind a hastily constructed barricade of logs, blocking
the southern access to the town, and forcing the brigades to outflank the
the short, but spirited fight at Corydon, which was the only battle of the war
fought on Indiana soil, Morgan’s men
completely routed the militia. Four of the defenders were killed, several
wounded, and 355 captured, with the remainder escaping. Morgan had lost 8 men
killed and 33 wounded. The prisoners were paroled and the town ransomed. The
county treasurer and two stores were relieved of $1890, while contributions of
$3000 were received from three area grain mills to save them from being burned.
Corydon, the march continued northward to Palmyra, Salisbury, and Salem, where
more contributions were received. From Salem, the columns moved eastward to
Canton, Vienna, Lexington, Paris, and Vernon, surely aware of the widespread
panic they were creating. Indiana Governor Oliver Morton declared a state of
emergency, and warnings were posted from Illinois to Indianapolis. Still,
pursuing Union cavalry was 24 hours behind. Skirting the town of Vernon, the 2nd
Kentucky entered Versailles on July 12 and rested for a short time. Aware of
their pursuers, they left for Sunman, 15 miles from the Ohio line.
July 13, the State of Ohio was invaded by Confederate troops for the first time
in the war. The 2nd Kentucky entered the town of Harrison without encountering
resistance, and after a short rest, the column moved on. As it was, the men were
worn and becoming demoralized by the fatigue of continuous marching and
sleeplessness. Still, the column rode on, day and night, with few opportunities
to rest, and every effort was made to avoid and deceive the enemy as they
the two brigades, now numbering about 2,000, approached Cincinnati, they began
their longest continuous march. And while the pace of this leg of the raid was
slow and plodding, it would be the most punishing that Morgan’s men would ever
endure. Marching by night, as close to Cincinnati as possible without entering
it, the columns skirted north of the city and rode through Glendale. After
capturing a train of cars on the Little Miami R.R., the force surrounded Camp
Dennison and captured a train of wagons and 200 mules. On that same day, the
raiders rode into Williamsburg, 28 miles east of Cincinnati, having marched more
than 90 miles in 35 hours. Here, they rested and slept like dead men.
of the suspense that was incident to the march around Cincinnati, and having
enjoyed a night’s rest in Williamsburg, the raiders continued eastward in
merry spirit. However, their renewed morale was not to remain, for their march
was constantly being interrupted by almost continuous fighting with Home Guards
and militia that industriously barricaded the roads.
had originally chosen points to cross the Ohio River that were normally too
shallow for Federal gunboats to negotiate, thereby negating their potential to
harass his troops. However, heavy summer rains had created conditions that now
deepened the fords and allowed the gunboats to sail the entire length of the
Ohio River unhindered. This brought strong pressure on Morgan and his men to
quickly ford the river at Buffington Island.
the columns did not reach Buffington Island until after nightfall on July 18. It
was too late to cross the Ohio River in the dark, and it became known from
scouting reports that the ford was protected by a force of infantry supported by
artillery. Even so, early next morning, about 500 men succeeded in crossing the
river despite a rising tide.
thereafter, the troops who had not crossed the Ohio River were attacked by
pursuing cavalry columns commanded by Generals Edward H. Hobson and James
Shackleford, and by other forces under General Henry Judah that had come up the
river. At the same time, the gunboat
"Moose", and the steamers "Imperial"
and "Allegheny Belle",
appeared and promptly began firing shells and grapeshot into the ranks of the
Confederates who, for a short time, made a gallant but hopeless fight. Shells
from enemy artillery exploded in their midst, sending men and horses into
panicked flight. Among the last to escape with General Morgan through a gap in
the valley were scattered units of the 2nd Kentucky, with Major Thomas Webber
leading out the better part of Company A and five other companies.
ensuing melee and demoralization ended the combat with the dispersion and
capture of 700 of Morgan’s command. Among those captured were Colonels Duke
and D. H. Smith. The escaping remnants of Morgan’s force, about 1000 men, rode
north and east to another river crossing. There, with the Union cavalry in close
pursuit, only 330 managed to cross with Colonels Johnson and Grigsby. General
Morgan also rode into the river, but when he saw that the greater number of his
men would be forced to remain on the Ohio shore due to the fire of the gunboats,
he turned and rode back, resolved to share the fate of his men.
the next several days, the Kentuckians continued north, riding through
Nelsonville, Cambridge, Harrisville, Smithfield, Wintersville, and Bergholz.
Finally, a week after the disaster at Buffington Island, Union cavalry struck on
July 26 near Salineville, managing to capture 200 and wound 75. Still, Morgan
and 364 survivors continued to the vicinity of New Lisbon, where they found
their paths blocked. There, they surrendered to Col. George Rue, a fellow
many of the captured were sent to Camp Morton in Indiana or the Camp Douglas
prison in Chicago, Morgan and some of his officers were confined as common
felons at the Ohio State Penitentiary in Columbus rather than receiving the
proper respect that is due to prisoners of war. However, Morgan and some of his
men later escaped the penitentiary in a famous and daring bid for freedom on
Great Raid had the effect of forcing the Union army to delay its move against
Bragg at Chattanooga and caused thousands of troops to be diverted from the
front. This would ultimately tip the scales in favor of the South at the Battle
of Chickamauga in September. During the raid, Morgan and his men passed through
52 towns, inflicted 600 casualties, captured and paroled about 6,000 of the
enemy, destroyed 34 bridges, disrupted the railroads at more than 60 places, and
destroyed military and public stores having a total value of nearly 10 million
FLEE ACROSS WEST VIRGINIA
Excerpted from The Parkersburg News, Sunday, March
disheartened Confederates of the Morgan Raid who had succeeded in crossing the
Ohio River at Buffington, under the leadership of Colonels Adam Johnson and J.
Warren Grigsby, were in no mood for rejoicing over the outcome of their foray
through Northern territory. “This night of July 19, 1863, their commanders
took charge of the week long withdrawal across the newly formed state of West
Virginia. Sad and dispirited, we
marched to Belleville, some 14 miles.” Capt. S. P. Cunningham, Morgan’s
assistant adjutant general, told a Richmond, Virginia, newspaper reporter on
August 1, almost two weeks after the Buffington encounter.
“We impressed guides, collected together some 300 men who had crossed,
many without arms, having lost them in the river and marched out toward
Claysville. After leaving the Ohio
at Belleville on that night, we marched to near Elizabethtown in Wirt County.”
Said the officer.
Duke, Morgan’s brother-in-law and second in command on the expedition, records
that “two fine companies” of the 19th Tennessee led by Captains
Kirkpatrick and Sisson, got across the Ohio at Buffington earlier that Sunday,
while two companies of Duke’s own old regiment, the 2nd Kentucky,
under Captains Lea and Cooper, succeeded in crossing within the next day or two.
In addition to the organized units, about three or four hundred
stragglers from various regiments managed to cross singly or in groups, and were
rounded up by Johnson and Grigsby.
For the first part of the flight, their route roughly
paralleled the course of the Little Kanawha River, later striking toward
years ago Donald Starcher of Parkersburg disclosed his recollection that his
grandfather, Floyd Starcher, used to tell how some of the retreating cavalrymen
came to the Perry Starcher farm on Yellow Creek in Calhoun County in the
evening. There they rested for the night, many of the tired young horsemen
bedding down on the hay in the Starcher barn. Floyd Stacher, then a boy of
thirteen, to the end of his life would never forget how he had seen and talked
with John Morgan’s feared and fabled men.
through Braxton – From Steer Creek Johnson led his men across central West
Virginia to Sutton, where wide-eyed Braxton Countians watched the tattered four
ride through the tiny village before taking the Gauley Bridge Road to Birch
the aid of the ferry they forded the Gauley River, toiled up Gauley Mountain to
the settlement of Hinkles and descended to cross the Cherry River climbing the
Green Briar Road to Cold Knob, then wound down the mountain to Trout. The watchful fugitives bypassed a heavily blockaded road, now
the Midland Trail, between Gauley Bridge and Lewisburg. “Tired steeds prevented rapid marches, and six days were
consumed ere we reached Lewisburg, near which we left Col. Grigsby with a
detachment of 475 men.” Cunningham told the Richmond scribe. “From the
crossing of the Ohio to our entrance in Greenbriar our men lived on beef alone,
without salt and without bread. Yet the only wish seemed to be for the safety of
Gen. Morgan and his command.”
the men who escaped at Buffington were in the steady hands of 29 year old Adam
Johnson, one of the truly remarkable men of the war.
His only concern was to get his men safely into the Confederacy.
Believing they would soon have a force in pursuit of us, the men moved as
rapidly as possible across the mountains and traveling by unfrequented roads,
reached Green Briar County, VA.
Tenth Kentucky, the Partisan Rangers led by Johnson, was one of Morgan’s few
units to get back almost intact from the Ohio raid.
The leader of another contingent of escapees reached Richmond ahead of
Johnson, and to President Jefferson Davis and Adjutant General Samuel Cooper,
argued heatedly in favor of the advantages of a plan to dismount Morgan’s men
and make them into infantry.
25, 1863, with Cooper’s sanction and granted permission to reorganize and lead
the command as Morgan’s Men, Adam R. Johnson named Morristown in East
Tennessee as the rendezvous. Within
sixty days, more than twelve hundred horsemen reported, many of them, of course,
men who for one reason or another, had not been able to go on the Ohio foray.
powerful General Forrest was able to prevent any repressive measures against
Johnson and the reorganized command. By great effort, Johnson got his entire
command mounted and reported to Gen. Simon Buckner, division commander with
Bragg’s army, shortly after the Battle of Chattanooga in September, 1863.
In this fiercely fought encounter, Morgan’s Men fired the first and
The preceding paragraph, apparently written over 100 years after the events, is
conflicting. The second sentence suggests that Johnson’s command was not
organized and ready to rejoin fighting until after the Battle of Chattanooga. An
alternative and likely correct explanation is that Johnson’s men were in the
thick of things at Chickamauga and Chattanooga prior to reporting to Buckener.
The third sentence clearly states that Morgan’s Men, Johnson’s reorganized
command, did fight at Chattanooga.
report (source unrecalled by the author), dated August 31st, stated
that a fragment of Morgan's division escaped capture via "West"
Virginia and walked all the way to Georgia. This company was led by Captain J.
D. Kirkpatrick of the 9th TN Co. "C" and was reassigned to General
Forrest. Here they fought with Forrest at the Battle of Chickamauga, GA, and
continued with him until May 1864 when they rejoined General Morgan, after his
escape. With Morgan again they proceeded with his "Last Raid" into
Kentucky where they fought the battles of Mt. Sterling and Cynthiana.
CHICKAMAUGA AND CHATTANOOGA QUESTION ANSWERED
Johnson’s escape from capture during the Ohio raid over 1200 members of his 10th
Cavalry unit, men not in the raid, eventually rejoined him and other escapees in
Eastern Tennessee. Soon thereafter, many if not all the regathered troops,
participated in the Battle at Chickamauga.
Johnson’s book provides a roster of the various reorganized companies, in
which James Alexander Drury is one of
those named. Also listed are Thomas and Valentine Girten, brother Francis
Sylvester Drury, and brothers-in-laws Leonard Mattingly and Leo Braddock.
It is clearly stated in Johnson’s memoirs that a
Regiment of Morgan’s Men, under the command of Col. Bob Martin, served
admirably at the Chickamauga and Chattanooga Battles.
We are therefore left to conclude that it is possible
that James Alexander Drury did participate in the Battles of Chickamauga and
Chattanooga as reported by those descendants with whom he related his exploits.
CHICKAMAUGA, Georgia (Sept 16-20, 1863)
Chickamauga was one of the few large battles of the war fought with
approximately equal numbers on both sides, about 125,000 in total.
Serious fighting began shortly after dawn on September 19 when Union
infantry encountered Confederate cavalry at Jay's Mill. According to Johnson’s
memoirs, in this fiercely fought encounter, Morgan’s Men, as the unit was
called, fired the first and last
shots. This brought on a general battle that quickly spread south for nearly
four miles in the heavily wooded valley, much of it along the muddy Chickamauga
Creek. The armies fought all day on
the 19th and gradually the Confederates pushed the Federals back to LaFayette
Road as the battle seemed to degenerate into a simple slugging match.
On September 20, confusion in orders left a gaping hole in the
Union battle line. It was immediately discovered and exploited by four
Confederate divisions. The Union army was routed and hastily retreated towards
nearby Chattanooga in a disorganized melee that took days to sort out. The
Chickamauga Battle was a great Confederate victory, but costly. Although Union
losses exceeded 16,000, the Southern army suffered more than 18,000 casualties.
Tennessee (Sept 22 to Nov 1863)
the heights overlooking the city, the Confederates confidently waited for the
Federals to either leave or starve. Instead, the Union forces regrouped and
awaited attack. The failure to press forward and rout the Northern Army from
Chattanooga while it was thoroughly disorganised, was the Confederates turn to
the weeks following, continuing Confederate inaction allowed other Union forces
to converge on crowded Chattanooga. The besieged Federal army was resupplied and
soon outnumbered the Confederates.
Grant arrived in Chattanooga on October 23, the tides of war shifted. The North
soon attacked with an onslaught that overwhelmed the Confederates. By November,
with defeat snatched from the jaws of victory, the demoralized Southern Army was
full retreat from the area.
Confederate Forces falling into disarray, little has been found to suggest where
and what James Drury and his
relatives might have been doing during this period of the war.
However, it would seem that for some, if not all, of the time he would
have been in Virginia during preparations for Morgan’s June raid into
Adapted from an article in the San Jose Mercury News, Thu, Feb. 16, 2006
foe in Civil War's epic struggle
as many Civil War soldiers died from insect-related disease than direct combat.
Mosquitoes, body lice and flies were a constant nuisance to Union and
Confederate soldiers. Roughly 60,000 soldiers died from malaria on the Union
played a role in every part of soldiering. Civil War soldiers were encamped in
conditions that were awful for humans, but great for insects.
weren't mechanized. They had to rely on horses and mules. Soldiers would
sometimes travel with 8,000 to 10,000 head of cattle, providing plenty of food
for flies. Soldiers already wracked by diarrhea or dysentery often had to deal
with mosquito-borne malaria as well. If that wasn't bad enough, soldiers' food
was usually infested.
led to quirky delousing methods. Soldiers practiced "skirmishing,"
squishing bugs and lice with their thumb and forefinger on their bodies. Often,
they boiled their clothes.
imported from South America was the best treatment for malaria, but the Union
blockade on the coast led to price gouging. In 1862, an ounce of quinine cost
about $5. By the end of the war, the going price in some places was $500 to $600
per ounce. The average Union or Confederate private made only $16 per month.
Rangers were organizations, operating independently from the main army, which
sought to injure the enemy with “Hit & Run” tactics usually in the rear
of, on the flanks, and against lines of communication without waiting for
special instructions. Their purpose was to cut off federal pickets, scouts,
foraging parties, destruction of supply depots, railroad tracks and bridges,
attacking them day and night.
Ranger Cavalry’s greatest value to the main army was that their incessant
harassment of opposing forces required the enemy to devote far larger numbers of
personnel to the protection of multiple facilities and pursuit of an “army”
that would often disappear into the background. Unencumbered by the supply
wagons typical of regular army, cavalry was a locust plague, capable of moving
quickly from place to place, occasionally covering 80 or more miles in a day
while leaving a wide swath of damage in their wake.
were generally organized into Companies of members from a particular locality to
take advantage of their intimate knowledge of the terrain and sympathies of the
The partisan ranger was part of the overall military force and was entitled to the privileges of the law of war, so long as he did not transgress it.
Found at http://www.rootsweb.com/~kyunion/uccw.htm
MATTINGLY, George Thomas – joined Colonel Faulkner’s
command afterward Co A 10th KY Cav (CSA). Assisted carrying Colonel
Johnson from field after his eyes shot out.
The relationships of this Mattingly, and 16 others, to known Mattingly
relatives has not yet been established.
Vicksburg, Miss Confederate Parole Records - Index found at http://www.nps.gov/vick/parole/csp_indx.htm
Morgan’s Christmas Raid found at http://www.hardin.k12.ky.us/Upton/Morgan.htm
10th KY Partisan Rangers Johnson's Cavalry, CSA
(Johnson's) Kentucky Cavalry, C.S.A. aka "10th Kentucky Partisan
Rangers" by Stephen D. Lynn,
OF MORGAN'S ROUGH RIDERS. THE RAID, by Basil W. Duke: pp.403-412 , The Century;
a popular quarterly, Volume 41, Issue 3 Publisher: The Century Company ,
Publication Date: Jan 1891 ,City: New York , found at http://www.myoldkentuckyroots.com/THERAID.html
Prison found at http://www.civilwarhome.com/campchase.htm
War found at http://www.alltel.net/~davefowler/pages/TT5.html
Tennessee Cavalry found at http://www.tennessee-scv.org/Camp1513/9th.htm
Battle summary found at http://www2.cr.nps.gov/abpp/battles/ky011.htm
of the 171st Ohio Infantry at Cynthiana found at http://www.angelfire.com/nj3/171st/.
Summary: Salineville, OH found at http://www2.cr.nps.gov/abpp/battles/oh002.htm.
THE 47th MOUNTED INFANTRY REGIMENT KENTUCKY VOLUNTEERS US ARMY found at http:// www.myoldkentuckyroots.com/
letters exchanged between Luke Scheer, Sr. and Mary Wixom in 1950, files of Luke
from Uncle Tom Drury to Luke Scheer, Sr, February 28, 1950, files of Luke Scheer
from Uncle Tom Drury to Luke Scheer, Sr, May 6, 1936, files of Luke Scheer Jr.
from Joseph Henry Drury to Luke Scheer, Sr, March 8, 1936, files of Luke Scheer
Tintypes provided by Francis Irene Drury (Beseau), January, 20, files of Luke
of James GIRTEN of Union County, Kentucky by Jeff Nelson ,Paducah, Kentucky
E-mails from cousins, Joseph Haining and Judith Burger, files of Luke Scheer Jr.
THUNDER FROM A CLEAR SKY - Johnson’s Raid on Newburgh, IN, by Ray
Mulesky, iUniverse, 2005
THE CIVIL WAR SOLDIERS OF UNION COUNTY, KENTUCKY, Compiled by
Dennis Kircher, Pub. Peyton Heady, 1996
Civil War Dictionary" by Mark M. Boatner, found on the Internet
22. “WITH SABRE AND SCALPEL. THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A SOLDIER AND SURGEON” by Wyeth, John Allan, New York, NY, Harper & Brothers Publishers, 1914
Uncle Tom’s letter indicated that James’ hearing was damaged at
Chickamauga. Records reveal that most veterans suffered hearing damage due
to proximity to firing cannons, thereby hinting at his possible service
during the Chickamauga Battle.
The Drury, Braddock, Girten, Mattingly family members were most likely part
of the Uniontown raid, and if not dispersed would have been at Geiger’s
Johnson had fewer than 120 men under his command on August 1, 1862; a month
later he had nearly 750. At years end he was leading about 1100.
Research has failed to definitively identify the Confederate force as
Johnson’s. However, Johnson and his men were conducting raids in the
general area and Owensboro was well within their sphere of operations.
Since James Hamilton Drury is known to have seen action at Owensboro,
there can be little doubt about the involvement of Company F from
Johnson’s 10th Kentucky
 On Dec. 24, 1862, main body of Morgan's Raiders made camp south of Glasgow. Capt. Quirk with his scouts entered town despite Union forces in the area. According to a participant, John Allen Wyeth, the scouts wished to celebrate Christmas Eve and entering Glasgow, were about dismount at a tavern along the town square. At that moment, a patrol from the 2nd Michigan Cavalry, USA, rode up with same desire. After a skirmish, with slight losses, both parties stampeded without a celebration.
Leo Joseph Braddock was captured at Henderson, KY, on June 6, 1863, under
circumstance not yet known. He
may have been on furlough since no records have been found indicating his
unit to be in the general area at time of capture.
 Francis Drury may have been a participant in Morgan’s unauthorized raid through Indiana and Ohio and, if a participant, would have been one of those who managed to escape capture.
Further research should clarify if this Benedict Spaulding was executor of
the Will of Benedict Drury and Guardian of his younger children. Benedict
Drury was James Alexander’s father.
It is believed that records lost could have included Wills of Leonard
Mattingly Jr. and Barton Elexious Miles, father-in-law and maternal
grandfather respectively of James
The capture of Newburg, Indiana, July 18, 1862, by Johnson and about a dozen
Confederates, was a significant event in that it was the first occasion that
Confederate forces set foot on Indiana soil. But, Newburg can’t even be
considered a skirmish since there wasn’t a shot fired by either side.
Frightened by the sight of what turned out to be fake cannons on the
opposite Ohio shore, the town and about 80 Federal troops surrendered within
20 minutes of Johnson’s arrival.
Leo J. Braddock’s inclusion in the reorganized roster in Eastern Tennessee
suggests the possibility that like many other paroled Union and Confederate
personnel, he ignored his oath, forfeited the bond and rejoined his unit.
However, the date of the reorganized roster which has not been established,
may discount Braddock’s presence in Georgia
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