audemus jura nostra defenere
On January 11, 1861 Alabama declared its succession from the Union and joined the Confederate State of America. While few battles were fought in the state, Alabama contributed about 120,000 soldiers to the American Civil War. Alabama soldiers fought in hundreds of battles including Gettysburg where 1,750 were either killed, captured or wounded. In all approximately 35,000 Alabama soldiers died int eh Civil War as well as 30,000 who were seriously disabled.

John M. Arrington

J.B. & Ramona Roberts

John M. Arrington was born about 1843 in Scott County, Arkansas and was brought to Texas during the days of the Republic. He was the son of John L. and Julia (Morrison) Arrington and the grandson of Drury and Nancy (Cauthron) Arrington.

In March of 1862 John enlisted in Company D, 15th Texas Cavalry at Dallas, Texas. At the time of enlistment his horse was valued at $240.00 and his equipment (saddle, bridle and gun) at $2o.00. Following a short training session the men were marched across the northwest corner of Louisiana and into Arkansas where they joined other Texas regiments at Little Rock. On July 24th the regiment was dismounted and the horses sent back to Texas.

During John’s military service he wrote six letters that have survived. John’s letters were short but included news of relatives and friends who were serving with him. He wrote from Arkansas Post (Fort Hindman) on December 21, 1862 and mentioned that a fellow soldier, Jackson Powell, had helped him build winter quarters. Shortly after that, on January 11, 1863, John was among the men captured when Arkansas Post was surrendered to Federal troops. The Confederates were sent to Camp Douglas, Illinois and held there until April when they were paroled and transferred to City Point, Virginia. Soon the remnants of the regiment were consolidated with other Texas units and attached to the Army of Tennessee. In the following months the men took part in the battles of Chickamauga, a Confederate victory, and Missionary Ridge, a Union victory. In late November the Confederate Army fled into Northern Georgia and prepared to spend the winter near Dalton.

In a letter dated January 5, 1864 John gave his location as Tunnel Hill, Georgia. He said he was well and the men in his camp were healthy. He said the Yanks had been lying quiet since the Battle of Missionary Ridge (November 25, 1863). He expressed deep affection for his mother and siblings.

On May 4, 1864 the campaign for Atlanta began with a Federal offensive on all fronts. Frequent skirmishes pushed the Confederates closer to the city. In June John wrote his last letter and stated he was about 20 miles from Atlanta. After a day of heavy fighting John was reported “Absent, wounded in battle July 22nd, in hospital”. He was never heard from again and there is no record of when he died or where he is buried. John M. Arrington died at the age of 21 in the service of the Confederacy.

Charles Thomas Arrington

By J.B. and Ramona Roberts

Charles Thomas Arrington was born June 2, 1834 in Scott County, Arkansas and brought to Texas during the early days of the Republic by his parents Claiborne Cauthorn and Nancy E. (Fisher) Arrington. Charles was the grandson of Drury and Nancy (Cauthorn) Arrington.

Charles enlisted in Company D, 15th Texas Cavalry March 1, 1862 at Dallas, Texas. At the time of enlistment the items he supplied included his horse, valued at $140.00 and equipment (possibly a saddle, bridle and a gun) valued at $25.00. The regiment spent the spring of 1862 training near Clarksville, Texas. In May of 1862 the unit was in Little Rock, Arkansas where they were brigaded with the 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 17th and 18th Cavalry Regiments.

The need for infantry led to the regiment being dismounted in the fall of 1862, an action that led to protest from men reluctant to part with their beloved horses. There were many tearful eyes when the horses were delivered to the men detailed to take them home. Service in the cavalry was important to Texans and parting with their horses meant losing an animal they had constantly relied on to that point in the war. Charles was one of those who was sent on the mission of returning horses to Texas.

Charles’ military records end at that point. According to a Confederate pension application filed July 10, 1901 he served until September, 1864. It is reasonable to assume he returned to the regiment and was present for the Battle of Arkansas Post in January 1863. Following the parole of the captured men a portion of the regiment returned to Texas and did work rounding up deserters in Texas. The Regiment also served guard duty at Camp Ford, a prison camp near Tyler.

Following the war Charles married Mary C. Nutt Wright on January 29, 1867 in Hood County, Texas. They were the parents of six children and lived most of their married life in Hood County. On July 10, 1901 Charles filed for a Confederate pension and in a sworn statement said he served during the war in Company H. 15th Regiment Texas Volunteer Cavalry from March 1862 till September 1864. His service was verified by two friends, C.H. Richards and Calvin Huffstudler. The application was approved based on the three sworn statements and Charles’ reputation of being an honest man. He died April 12, 1914, in Johnson County, Texas and is buried in Friendship Cemetery, Hood County, Texas.

Jesse Thomas Hammack

By Larry Hammack

Jesse Thomas Hammack

Jesse Thomas Hammack

Born 5 October 1835 in Georgia probably Randolph County, son of Thomas Hammack and Mary A Pittman.  The family moved to Barbour County, Alabama before 1850.  On December 27, 1855 he marries Mary Ann Corbitt in Lawrenceville, Henry County, Alabama where he farms until President Davis calls for volunteers to serve the new nation.

On March 18, 1862 Jesse Thomas Hammack (J.T.) enlist in Company H of the 37th Alabama Infantry (Dowdell’s Volunteers) along with his wives three (3) brothers, William James Corbitt, Henry E Corbitt, and Robert M Corbitt.  The 37th Alabama served throughout Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, finally ending the war at Bentonville, North Carolina.

Alabama Flag

Alabama Flag

In 1882 J. T. moves his family across the Chattahoochee River to Early County, Georgia where he becomes a successful farmer and raising his eight (8) children, William, Mary, Henry. Robert Leslie, Wynona, Annie and Cora.

Jesse Thomas Hammack died on December 17, 1911 in Blakely, Early County, Georgia where he received a Masonic funeral in the Blakely City Cemetery.

Private Owen Brady

By Matthew Aparcio

Owen was born in Ireland in 1841 and came to America while still a young boy. Owen stowed away n a ship bound for America, in search of his father who had left Ireland during the Potato Famine. His father was looking to make a place in America to bring his family. Owen never was able to locate him.

Owen married Mary J. Campbell (1851-1883) and together they had six children. On March 15, 1862, Owen enlisted in the Confederate Army in Union Town, Alabama. He served in Captain Seldon’s Co. Ala. L. Art’y; also known as Gid Nelson Light Artillery. One of Pvt. Brady’s duties during the War was to drive an ammunition wagon. Pvt. Brady stated about being in battle: “We lost nearly every member at the Battle of Nashville, Tennessee.” Pvt. Brady was later taken prisoner of war at Citronelle, Alabama on May 4, 1865 and later paroled on May 9, 1865 at Meridian, Mississippi.

After the War he went to Texas on a wagon train from Alabama, along with an army buddy; Marcus D. Steed and others. He settled in the Stubblefield Community and bought a parcel of land from the old Burnett Plantation. Owen lived on this land for the rest of his life.

Owen died in 1930, in Houston County, Texas and is buried in the Ivie Cemetery, Kennard, Texas.

Private Henry Clay Roberts

By Keith Roberts

It was the spring of 1862. In the month of April the Union and the Confederacy were fully engaged in the Battle of Shiloh. Just outside of Corinth, Mississippi, Company A of the 18th Alabama Regiment was involved in a skirmish with the Yankees. To the Yankees they were just another band of rebel outlaws that needed to be put down. But those “rebels” were fighting to protect their families, and to preserve their way of life.

Pvt. Henry Clay Roberts was among them. There wasn’t much cover so they found themselves in a shallow ditch with the Yankees only a few yard away. Tensions were high but these rebels were determined. They were not only bound to a cause but to each other as friends and compatriots.

The best vantage point was from behind a tree at the end of the ditch, so the first soldier took his turn. He came out from behind the tree, fired his rifle, cursed the Yankees and was shot. He died also.

Pvt. Roberts was net in line. He made his way up behind the same tree where his fellow compatriots lay dead, but he remained quiet. Pvt. Roberts slid around the tree and fired but was hit by Yankee fire in the hand and the hip. He survived, losing only his thumb but was unable to remain with the infantry. He spent the rest of the war working at the camp commissary.

Pvt. Henry Clay Roberts was born October 18th, 1839 in Macon County, Georgia. He died on March 3rd, 1919 in Chilton County, Alabama and is buried in Clanton Cemetery, Clanton, Alabama beside his wife Mollie.