1) The compiled engagements card for Thomas shows that he was "ad" - absent, detached from sometime after Seven Pines but before Gaines Mill. This detached service continued until sometime after Antietam. There are no individual Muster cards from the time period Jul - Oct in his service file. The last for May-June 1862 show him as "present." The next one sequentially is Nov - Dec 1862, which also shows him as "present." What is the liklihood of discovering what this detachment entailed? There is nothing in his NARA files to indicate what the detachment was for or where he was posted.
2) The final muster roll card in his file has the following statement "absent on detached service to bring clothing from Ala for Regt." His name is not listed on the Appomatox paroles and his record indicates that he was paroled on 13 Jun 1865 at Demopolis, AL.
I wonder if:
a) Anyone has ever heard of such a detachment for this unit? He was 5th Sgt of the company by that time.
b) What the liklihood he ever made it back to his unit? Does anyone have any thoughts on how long travel between Va and Ala would take in early 1865? After the fall of Atlanta, were there intact rail lines that were used by the CSA for troop movements between the two theaters?
c) Family lore states that he was with the army at surrender in Appomatox, but based on data, this is improbable. I know some soldiers wandered off rather than surrender. How likely was this for an unmounted infantryman?