My great-grandfather, William N. Ballard, signed up with the 4th Kentucky Infantry (Confederate) in Sept. 1862 in Richmond, KY. This unit was not in KY at the time, but further south in Tennessee. How did William get from point A to point B? That is, after he signed up, what would have been his next step? I assume he would first have had to go through training. Where would that have been, and then how would he have eventually hooked up with his unit in Tennesee?
After Chickamauga, his unit camped at Dalton. William left his unit there, and was never heard from again. Somehow, William made his way back to Kentucky, for he is found there in Richmond with his grandmother (Lizzie) in the 1870 census. How do you suppose he made his way back to Kentucky? Would others in Kentucky have known that he may have deserted? Would he have had to face repercussions? Was Kentucky a "free state?" There was no conscription for guys in Kentucky, so William was a volunteer. Did that affect how people might have treated him, once he was on Kentucky soil again?
Another soldier in his unit (Company H), a Hogan Presser, signed up in Richmond, KY, during the same week in Sept. in 1862. The rest of his Company had signed on in 1861 at Camp Burnett. So the two of them had something in common. Hogan Presser deserted on Christmas Day at Dalton, in 1863. I have wondered if the two of them may have taken off together.