My gg-grandfather Maj. John M Sawyers, 8th U.S. Cavalry, is another of the Unionists from eastern Tennessee. A veteran of the Spanish-American war, he apparently received a battlefield commission during the 1845 conflict.
However, the family has no other military records until he turns up in the Civil War with the rank of major. According to 8th Cav. records, he and his troop were the first US unit to enter Knoxville, Tn, after Gen. Burnside withdrew from the Tennessee capitol.
After the Civil War, he was retired as a Lt. Col. and petitioned in 1890 for a disability pension because of a problem associated with a lung disease.
Only recently, I discovered that he had two brothers, who fought for the Confederacy. Both were in the infantry and enlisted men. Neither I nor their descendants knew that our ancestors migrated to Texas after the Civil War.