Co.mpany I, 11th REGIMENT ARKANSAS INFANTRY CONFEDERATE STATES
Co. I, 11 Arkansas Infantry Regiment was under Capt. Cunningham’s Company when Moses “Isonhower” Isenhower signed for a tour of duty for one year, on October 29, 1861. Moses listed his age as 35 when he was really 38, and he carried no personal papers. The reason for the age change probably was that the Army was not taking volunteers at age 38, especially those with a family. Moses left his wife and five children in Texas in about 1859, [we do not know the reason at this time.] [He was listed as Coroner at Mount Ida, Arkansas from 1860 to 1862]
He traveled fifty miles to Little Rock Arkansas to sign up under Capt. Anderson Cunningham of the Confederate Army. Moses trained with Co, I, 11th Infantry Regiment for a very short time. Most soldiers received no training but were sent wherever the need may be. This Regiment was sent to Island Number Ten. From information gathered from a book, Island No. 10, it seems that the construction of forts continued through March 3, 1862. So, since the Confederate 11th Arkansas Infantry was located there and Moses W. Isenhower was a soldier in the 11th, we will assume he was assisting in the construction. There on February 16, 1862 Moses received a severe head wound and died. Some information stated he was taken prisoner and died in Tennessee, and is buried there in a Government Cemetery. His Army record states he died at Fort Thompson located on Island Number Ten. Many soldiers were buried in unmarked graves. Those buried on Island Number Ten were removed and buried elsewhere. The descendants of Moses would like to know where he lies in his grave, but, if it is not to be, that his grave is never found, well, it does not matter where he is buried, for they know he was a patriotic citizen and a faithful soldier. They honor his memory, as did his son William Martin Isenhower.
AT NEW MADRID, MISSOURI, ISLAND NUMBER 10
From: Island No. 10 by Larry J. Daniel and Lynn N. Bock
Asa Grey, topographical engineer, was sent to the New Madrid tristate area to ascertain its feasibility for defence. He found that Island Number 10 was the strongest natural position on the Mississippi River in the upper valley. The river at that point made a double bend and appeared on a map like an “ S “ on its face. The Island, so named because it was the tenth island south of the Ohio River. It was about one mile long and 450 yards wide. It sat ten feet above low water in nearly the middle of the channel and commanded the river in three directions. The river measured about three-fourths of a mile on the east and a mile on the west.
Asa Gray reported that the Island had “no superior, in my opion, above Memphis.” Colonel John McCown, one of Major General Leonidas Polk’s brigade commanders, agreed with, Gray’s assessment, calling the Island the “strongest position for the defence of the Mississippi Valley.”
In late November, 1861 the 11th reported to Gray. These men , armed with old British rifles and squirrel guns, had previously gathered up their arms and sent them to New Orleans for reboring. The weapons were so poorly prepared, however, that most of them burst upon firing. Major General Polk requested six hundred rifles for the 11th, but meanwhile the troops received shovels and assisted in constructing the batteries laid out by Gray. For a week the men encamped on the Tennessee shore. “The Lake [Reelfoot] is not as deep as many think, “ observed Major James Poe. “There are old rotten stumps and a few dead trees. No cows get in it, however, for the bottom of it is soft mud. There are some places where the lake is blue water.”
At the end of the month the regiment was ferried across to the Island and bivouacked. Farmer Price gave the men free access to his five acre turnip patch, and a boy crossed over and sold eggs to the troops. Assistant surgeon Junis Bragg nonetheless considered the place dreary enough. “Island Ten is a miserable place to stay at,” he wrote his wife. “This is by no means a pleasant locality, but it is the highest and driest spot I have seen since the hills of Fort Pillow.” He went on to confide, “The fact of the business is this: we are all liable at any minute to be driven from this place.”
In January 1862, the 11th Arkansas relocated to Fort Thompson. This gave Gantt 1,036 infantrymen and 120 cannoneers, not counting Thompson’s cavalry, which now amounted to only a hundred men. The 46th Tennessee, with only 207 effectives, replaced the 11th at Island No. 10, [the above was from a book I bought]