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The Fortieth Alabama Infantry

        The Fortieth Alabama was organized at Mobile in May, 1862. It went to Vicksburg by way of Columbus, Miss., and was brigaded with the Thirty-seventh and Forty-second under General Moore; was in Featherstone's command in the Steele's bayou expedition, March 16 to 22, 1863; was transferred to Bragg's army, and appears to have served in detachment as sharpshooters for the greater part of the time of its service. At Vicksburg it suffered severely, and a large portion was captured. Being paroled, it joined its command in Tennessee in time to take part in the battle of Chickamauga, September 19th and 20th, where it lost heavily, next fighting at Lookout Mountain, November 24th, and at Missionary Ridge, November 25th. Gen. Alpheus Baker became its brigadier, and it wintered at Dalton. It took a prominent part in the Atlanta campaign; at Rocky Face, May 9 and 10, 1864; Resaca, May 14th and 15th, and at New Hope church, May 25th, making gallant charges and earning a fine record, both collectively and individually, as will be seen in the extracts below. In midsummer, 1864, the brigade was transferred to Mobile, and, under General Maury, took part in the defense of Mobile; but Hood, who knew well the gallantry of these troops, clamored for their return, and in January, 1865, they were sent back to the army of Tennessee; and after skirmishing and fighting, last of all at Bentonville, March 18th, the regiment, consolidated with the Nineteenth and Forty-sixth, was surrendered at Yadkin river bridge.
        Adjt. C. H. Ellerbee and Capt. James A. Latham were killed at Bentonville, Capt. Ed. Marsh at Dalton, Sergt. Preston S. Gilder, standard-bearer, at Resaca.
        The field officers were Cols. A. A. Coleman and John H. Higley, Lieut.-Cols. Thomas Stone (who died in the service) and Ezekiel Gully, and Maj. E. D. Willett.

Extracts From Official War Records

    Vol. XV.--(850) Army of Mobile, General Slaughter, district of the Gulf, General Forney, October 31, 1862.
    Vol. XVII, Part I--(666) General Pemberton in his report of operations, December 21, 1862, to January 2, 1863, says: "On 25th, the Fortieth Alabama regiment, Col. A. A. Coleman, was ordered from Columbus to Vicksburg."
    Vol. XVII, Part 2--(797, 799) Colonel Coleman's regiment ordered to Columbus. (819) Captain Marsh's company, E, at Jackson, serving as provost guard. (825) In Vicksburg, 332 effectives, in Major-General Smith's command, January 3, 1863.
        No. 36--(458-461) General Featherstone's report of engagements on Rolling Fork and Deer creek, March 19th to 29th, in which regiment is mentioned several times. (467, 510) Mentioned in Col. S. W. Ferguson's report of engagement of March 22d, the Steele's bayou expedition.
        No. 37--(327, 369) In Moore's brigade, Forney's division, army of Vicksburg. Casualties in siege, 18 killed, 39 wounded. (381) Mentioned in J. C. Moore's report of siege, May 17 to July 4, 1863.
        No. 38--(612, 705) Assignments. (762) Col.S. W. Ferguson, Rolling Fork, April 18, 1863, says: "I arrived here last night with the Fortieth Alabama." (957) Called "Alabama battalion sharpshooters," in Walker's division at and near Yazoo City, June 7th. (1041) Eastern Louisiana, Ector's brigade, Walker's division, July 30th; "Alabama battalion" under Maj. T. O. Stone.
        No. 51--(14) "Stone's Alabama battalion sharpshooters," in Ector's brigade, September 19 and 20, 1863, army of Tennessee, General Bragg.
        No. 55--(658) Moore's brigade, Hardee's corps, November 20, 1863, army of Tennessee, General Bragg. (691) Casualties, November 24 and 25, 1863, 4 killed, 20 wounded. (704) Mentioned in Gen. J. C. Moore's report of engagements on Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge.
        No. 56--(726) Stone's sharpshooters, Ector's brigade, French's division, November 20, 1863. In department of Mississippi and East Louisiana, General Johnston. (803) Moore's brigade, Cheatham's division, December 10, 1863. In army of Tennessee, General Hardee. (822) December 14, 1863, 429 total present. (884) Assignment as above, December 31st.
        No. 57--(480, 481) Report of Col. John H. Higley, commanding brigade, operations February 23 to 27, 1864.
        No. 58--(583) On December 16, 1863, General Johnston was directed to turn over the immediate command of army of the Mississippi to General Polk. This department was officially called "The department of Alabama, Mississippi and East Louisiana." (584) "Stone's sharpshooters," Ector's brigade, January 20, 1864, in General Polk's army. (The sharpshooters under Lieutenant-Colonel Stone were evidently a detachment of the Fortieth.) (587) Moore's brigade, Hardee's corps, January 20, 1864, army of Tennessee, General Johnston; Lieutenant-Colonel Stone in command of regiment.
        No. 59--(870) Baker's brigade, Stewart's division, April 30, 1864, Hood's corps, army of Tennessee; Capt. Elbert D. Willett commanding regiment.
        No. 74--(641, et seq.) Assignment as above, April to August, 1864; August 31st, Col. John H. Higley commanding regiment. (844-847) Gen. Alpheus Baker's report: May 10th, Capt. E. Marsh, a valued officer, was killed; May 15th, standard-bearer (Sergt. Preston L. Gilder) acted with the highest gallantry and fell in front of his comrades, pierced by the bullets of the foe. He speaks also of Colonel Higley. (849, 850) Colonel Higley's report of Rocky Face mountain, May 10th: Captain Marsh and 2 privates killed; Lieut. J. C. Moore and 4 privates wounded. May 15th, Sergt. P. S. Gilder was killed several paces in front of his command; colors were left on field. Adjutant Ellerbee, Lieutenant Knigh-ton and Lieutenant Peteet returned to field and secured colors under a heavy fire. Loss, 5 killed, 34 wounded; May 25th, loss 3 killed, 9 wounded. "I commenced the campaign May 7th with 416 effective men; at present (May 31st) I number 326 effective men. Total, 17 killed, 60 wounded, 3 missing." Conduct of officers and men commended highly.
        No. 75--(481) Mentioned in General Sherman's communication, dated Big Shanty, Ga., June 15, 1864. (For other extracts, see those in connection with the Thirty-seventh Alabama, brigade organization remaining the same.)
        No. 100--(734) Same assignment, March 31, 1865, army near Smithfield; Capt. Thomas M. Bronson commanding regiment.

This Page last updated 06/08/03


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