George, that is an awesome question. It is my guess many soldiers did go barefooted.
I think they did out of necessity. I believe Winston Groom In “Shrouds of Glory” talks about the Army Of the Tennessee CS having many soldiers without shoes. I know in my family oral tradition from Tennessee and Georgia, The first shoes they ever owned was when they joined the Army. I cannot remember the book that I think specially talked about Arkansas specifically. My wife’s Great, Great Grandfather, was a farmer and had a tannery and made shoes. Tradition/legend has it that As a member of the 38th Arkansas, he was placed on detached service to make shoes. He was later an officer in the 45th Calvary and a Post War photograph he is in Calvary boots holding a White mule. All of which were alleged to be from his “War” days. I have wondered if he made the boots himself. There is a fictional book by Douglas C Jones entitled the “Barefoot Brigade” about the 3rd Arkansas Infantry. I believe it was based off of his personal research. I know by 1864 that most soldiers could not afford to by their own shoes.