The Louisiana in the Civil War Message Board - Archive

The Brierfield Rebels -- Correspondence

Here is some additional correspondence I found at the National Archives several years ago, regarding the consolidation of two Louisiana cavalry companies. This is from Lieut. T. F. Gaddis and Sen. Edward Sparrow. Spelling and punctuation as per the original. More to follow.


ATLANTA, GEO., Sept. 17th, 1862.


Dear Sir: I started to Richmond, Va., but concluded I could do as well by writing. In August 1861 you had the Brierfield Rebels received as a Cavalry Co. by President Davis -- A. J. McNeal Capt., my self 1st Lieut. We was mustered in to Servis on the 1st day of Sept. 1861 for 3 years or the War at Memphis & were ordered by Gen. Poke to report to Gen. Hardee for duty, which we did and formed with 4 Arks Co. the 1st Bat. of Ark. Cavelry under Command of Maj. Charles Phifer. While in Ky. were in Gen. Hindman's Brigade. After getting to Corinth there came another Cavelry Co. from Madison Parish under command of Capt. T. M. Cochran and 5 Co. from Ark., and Gen. Hardee ordered them to form a Reg. which is now the 2d Regt. of Ark. Cavelry in Gen. Armstrong Brig., Gen. Price Division & in that reorganization 2 Companies was thrown together. The Brierfield Rebels was thrown in to Capt. Cochrans Co. making 170 men, 154 for duty a few ago. The Brierfields was a good & full Co. before & for the War & so was Capt. Cochrans Co. sworn in for the War & in that new organization 2 Lt., 1st & 3rd in Captain Cochrans Co. was with myself Discharged from the Servis by order of Gen. Hardee. The Brierfield Rebels from Carroll Parish, La., are all badly dissatisfied & Capt. Cochrans Co. from Madison Parish they want to be divided as they were at first & want their same officers as before. Capt. McNeal is with G. Hindman in Ark. & Col. of a Reg. If the Brierfield is not full enough I could recruit them to 100 in less than 5 days at any time. I have spoke to several Generals on the subject and they all say the whole proceedings was illegal. I was at home sick & had been for 10 days when I was Discharged but soon got well & went to see my Co. They have all so long solicited me to return to them or make some arrangement with the War Department to get back. Is the reason I have written to you to see if you cant fix the matter up for me to return to my command. The muster Rolls will sho at Richmond that I was mustered in for 3 years or thw War & was Honorably discharged on the 20th of April last without my concent or that of my Co. My Co. thinks extremely hard of being treated in that way. If you can get me restored to my Co. the Co. & me self under many obligations to you and also many Citizens of Carroll Parish who have Sons & relations with me. Let me heare from you soon at Vicksburg, Miss. I will be certain to get your letter or other papers there than else where. I made up in Carroll Parish another Cavelry Co. & abandoned it on the many Solicitations of my old Co. to return to them & I also understood that I was illegally discharged & would have to return to my Co. at some time. Below I will give you an extract of my Discharge.

Sir with mutch respect,

I am your obt servt,


SENATE CHAMBER, 22nd Sept. 1862.

Hon. G. W. RANDOLPH, Sec. of War.

SIR: I wish to call your attention to the matters presented in the enclosed letter.

You will see that two full companies, both from La., have been consolidated & their supernumerary officers discharged. By this order the law has been clearly violated in this respect as well as others, that the number of the company formed from the two companies consolidated not only exceeded the maximum number of a cavalry company but more than doubling the number.

It eppears that the company formed from the two companies disbanded number 170, 154 reporting for duty. The maximum number of a cavalry co. is eighty.

I ask that the order disbanding these companies & discharging a part of the officers be cancelled.