Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment while attached to Cobb's Brigade: A cousin commanding other cousins.

Infantry Company Flag from North Carolina

During the early part of the Civil War, the North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment was placed in the command of Major General Howell Cobb.  Four of my cousins served in various companies in the North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment.  None of these men were related to each other during their lifetimes.  My 4th Great Grandfather, Benjamin Lucious Moss would  serve as a common relation between Peter Mann Moss and Drewry M. Daniel.  My 3rd Great Grandmother, Fanny Adcock Moss, would serve as the common relation between Peter Moss, Drewry Daniel and Pumphrey W. Adcock.

Infantry button from North Carolina

The regiment was originally organized as the 5th Regiment of North Carolina Volunteers at Garysburg, North Carolina on June 11, 1861.   Initially, the unit was comprised of twelve companies, A-M.  They were ordered to Yorktown, Virginia on June 29th.  The men arrived in Yorktown on July 1st and camped near the old British works from the American Revolution.  Many of these soldiers felt as though they were about to participate in another war of independence.

While in Yorktown, many of the men suffered from illness in the camps.  Rural farm boys had never been exposed to the strains and germs of the communal living that came with being in the military.   Massing all the men together led to several outbreaks of disease.  Due to the high sickness rate, the regiment moved north of the York River to Hodby's Point in Gloucester County. 

On November 14, 1861, the regimental designation of the unit was changed from the 5th Regiment of North Carolina Volunteers to the North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment.   The regiment reported to Camp Dudley for the winter and remained there until they were ordered to Suffolk, Virginia in March of 1862.   While in Suffolk the men were placed under the command of my 4th cousin 7x removed, General Howell Cobb.  Peter Mann Moss and Drewry Daniel were distant cousins with Howell Cobb.  An entire entry pertaining to Cobb can be found in the September 2012 postings on this blog.  The men under Cobb's command became affectionately known as Cobb's Brigade. 

Major General Howell Cobb

Along with the North Carolina 15th, Cobb's Brigade consisted of the Louisiana 2nd and 11th, the Georgia 16th Infantries and Cobb's Georgia Legion, which was commanded by Howell Cobb's younger brother, Brigadier General Thomas Reade Rootes Cobb.  Cobb's Brigade was ordered back to Yorktown, Virginia in April of 1862.  Back on the Peninsula, the Confederates prepared for an engagement with Union General George B. McClellan's army.   Cobb's Brigade was poised in a defensive position around Warwick Creek.  On April 16th, McClellan's Federals tested the Confederate defenses at Lee's Mill.  Part of McClellan's troops succeeded in crossing the water on the regiment's flank before a heavy fight developed that forced their retreat.   Twelve men from the regiment were reported killed.  Federal casualties numbered 183 killed or wounded. 

Cobb's Brigade was heavily engaged during the Peninsula Campaign and the Seven Days Battle.  On June 29th, the regiment took part in a skirmish near Savage's Station on the York River Railroad.  The Confederate assault forced the Federal troops to abandon their position and destroy all viable supplies that could be useful to the enemy.  Despite their retreat, the Federals left almost 2,000 sick and wounded for the Confederates to take as prisoners. 

Historical Marker at the site of Savage's Station
Field Hospital after the Battle of Savage's Station

On July 1, 1862, Cobb's Brigade took part in the Battle of Malvern Hill.  The unit was ordered to support the Confederate Artillery Batteries that were positioned roughly 1,000 yards away from the enemy's artillery line.

Depiction of the Federal Artillery Line at Malvern Hill

With the Federals in possession of the high ground, they controlled the field of battle effectively.  Union guns soon succeeded in silencing nearly every Confederate gun within their range.  The infantry units in the rear of the Confederate batteries suffered heavily from the shot and shell.  Cobb's Brigade was ordered to attack the enemy's fortified position on the crest of the hill.   The North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment formed the right of the brigade and moved to attack through an open field.  They were exposed to murderous fire of grape and canister from the Union guns, mortar shells from Union gun-boats and heavy fire from Union infantry.  They formed part of the first line of battle and remained on the field until nightfall with no re-enforcements ever reaching their position.  As night fell, the fighting ceased.  Out of 692 active troops, the North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment suffered 164 killed or wounded in the action at Malvern Hill. 

Following the Seven Days Battle, Cobb's Brigade took part in the Maryland Campaign.  Two hundred and fifty new recruits helped replenish the ranks of the North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment.  The majority of these men had never been given any formal military training before.  On August 26, 1862, before any training could take place, the men were ordered to march to Maryland. 

On Sunday, September 14th, the Brigade became engaged with Federal forces on South Mountain near Crampton's Gap.  They formed a line of battle at the top of the mountain in the rear portion of General Mahone's Brigade and other Confederate troops under the command of Colonel Mumford.   Constant marching over rough roads with many of the men being nearly shoeless and without full rations lead to the men being severely exhausted.  Federal forces pressed on the right of the Brigade.  The North Carolina 15th took position behind a rock fence and were given instructions to hold the line, which they did until Union troops forced the Georgia regiments attached to Cobb's Brigade (acting as the right of the Brigade) back, thus gaining the rear and possession of the road across the gap.  Although the Federals were now in possession of the rear, Cobb's Brigade had arrived in time to delay the Union advance through the gap.   Fire from the Federals in the rear startled the Brigade.  Many men thought they were being fired on by their own troops.  A flying Federal flag in the rear was enough to show the men that their position had been compromised.  Of the 402 engaged, the loss of the regiment at Crampton's Gap was 14 killed, 48 wounded and 124 prisoners taken. 

North Carolina Monument at South Mountain

The remaining men from the North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment served under General Cobb through the Maryland Campaign.   The regiment was transferred from Cobb's Brigade to Brigadier General John R. Cooke's Brigade in early December of 1862.  They would remain attached to the Army of Northern Virginia for the remainder of the war.  Most surviving men from the regiment were paroled at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865. 

Company B, known as the "Monroe Light Infantry"

Drewry M. Daniel was born in Caswell County, North Carolina on October 22, 1836.  He enlisted as a Private in Company B, North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment on July 15, 1862 for the duration of the war. 

Drewry's 1st Muster

Drewry was listed as present and accounted for until he was "sent to the hospital"  in August of 1862.  

Drewry's muster showing he was sent to the hospital

He never rejoined his company and was dropped from the muster rolls on September 1, 1863 because he "was supposed to be dead." 

Muster roll showing Drewry's supposed death

However, Drewry wasn't dead, he was just a deserter.  He lived an additional 50 years following the war.   Drewry M. Daniel died in Person County, North Carolina on June 20, 1915.  He was 78 years old.  He is buried in Wheeler's Primitive Baptist Church in Person County.

Drewry Daniel's grave

Drewry's service marker

Here's my relation to Drewry:

Drewry M. Daniel (1836 - 1915)
is your 2nd cousin 5x removed
James B. Daniel (1808 - 1904)
Father of Drewry M.
James Key Daniel (1766 - 1851)
Father of James B.
Josiah Daniel (1744 - 1811)
Father of James Key
William Ford Daniel (1774 - 1848)
Son of Josiah
L. Chesley Daniel (1806 - 1882)
Son of William Ford
William Henry "Buck" Daniel (1827 - 1896)
Son of L. Chesley
Phebe Lucy Daniel (1862 - 1946)
Daughter of William Henry "Buck"
Valeria Lee Moss (1890 - 1968)
Daughter of Phebe Lucy
Phebe Teresa Wheeler Lewis (1918 - 1977)
Daughter of Valeria Lee
Joyce Elaine Lewis (1948 - )
Daughter of Phebe Teresa
Chip Stokes
You are the son of Joyce

Company E

Peter Mann Moss was born in Granville County, North Carolina on July 22, 1839.  He enlisted as a Corporal in Company E, North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment on May 16, 1861 at the age of 21. 

1st Muster roll for Peter

Moss was promoted to Ordnance Sergeant on May 10, 1862, where he was transferred to the Field and Staff.  He was also listed on his company's "Roll of Honor".

Roll of Honor showing promotion

Ordnance Sergeant rank insignia

He was present and accounted for until he was paroled at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865.

Parole document for Peter

Peter Mann Moss lived for an additional 35 years following the war.  He died in Greene County, Georgia on November 12, 1900.  He was 61 years old.  His burial location is not known at the time of this entry. 
Here's my relation to Peter:

Peter Mann Moss (1839 - 1900)
is your 1st cousin 5x removed
Jordan Daniel Moss (1806 - 1873)
Father of Peter Mann
Howell Cobb Moss Sr. (1773 - 1831)
Father of Jordan Daniel
Benjamin Lucious Moss (1792 - 1847)
Son of Howell Cobb
James C. Moss (1824 - 1891)
Son of Benjamin Lucious
William Allen Moss (1859 - 1931)
Son of James C.
Valeria Lee Moss (1890 - 1968)
Daughter of William Allen
Phebe Teresa Wheeler Lewis (1918 - 1977)
Daughter of Valeria Lee
Joyce Elaine Lewis (1948 - )
Daughter of Phebe Teresa
Chip Stokes
You are the son of Joyce

Pumphrey W. Adcock was born in Granville County, North Carolina in 1843.  He was a farmer prior to enlisting as a Private in Company E, North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment on May 16, 1861.  He was 18 years old. 

Pumphrey's 1st muster showing he was absent for being sick

Pumphrey was present and accounted for until he died at Staunton, Virginia on February 6, 1863 of "phthisis pulmonalis."  He was 20 years old at the time of his death. 

Report showing Pumphrey's illness

Muster roll showing Pumphrey's death

Pumphrey was listed on his company's Roll of Honor.

Roll of Honor for Pumphrey

He is buried in the Old Lynchburg Cemetery in Lynchburg, Virginia. 

Pumphrey Adcock's Grave

A little side note about the name Pumphrey.  It's probable that his name was actually Pomphret or Pomfret.  My 5th Great Grandfather, Pomfret Blackwell's name was a combination of his mother, Frances Pomfret's name and his father, John Blackwell's name.  The Pomfret's and the Blackwell's both resided in Granville County along with the Adcocks.  It's quite possible that Pumphrey's line of Adcock's was related to the Pomfret family, although there is no direct lineal relation.  He is listed on the 1850 Federal Census as "Pomprey" Adcock.  His younger brother, James E. D. Adcock and older brother, Elvis Green Adcock served in Company C of the North Carolina 12th Infantry Regiment.  James died in a Richmond Hospital from disease on July 1, 1862.  He is buried in Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia.   Elvis Green Adcock died in Stanton Hospital in Washington D.C. on May 30, 1864 from wounds received at the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House.  Elvis is buried in Oakwood Cemetery in Raleigh, North Carolina.  Both will be the focus of a future entry.

Here's my relation to Pumphrey:

Pumphrey W. Adcock (1843 - 1863)
is your 2nd cousin 4x removed
Elvis Henderson Adcock (1810 - 1896)
Father of Pumphrey W.
Jesse Adcock (1773 - 1860)
Father of Elvis Henderson
Bollin Adcock (1737 - 1804)
Father of Jesse
William Adcock (1790 - 1858)
Son of Bollin
Annie Tyson "Fanny" Adcock (1835 - 1912)
Daughter of William
William Allen Moss (1859 - 1931)
Son of Annie Tyson "Fanny"
Valeria Lee Moss (1890 - 1968)
Daughter of William Allen
Phebe Teresa Wheeler Lewis (1918 - 1977)
Daughter of Valeria Lee
Joyce Elaine Lewis (1948 - )
Daughter of Phebe Teresa
Chip Stokes
You are the son of Joyce

Company K

William Robert "Sawney" Webb circa 1850's

William Robert "Sawney" Webb was born in Orange County, North Carolina on November 11, 1842.  He enlisted as 1st Sergeant in Company K, North Carolina 15th Infantry Regiment on May 21, 1861 at the age of 18.

1st Muster for William

William was wounded on July 1, 1862 at the Battle of Malvern Hill.  His Muster Roll states he was furloughed home to recover by the Surgeon in charge of the Hospital in Richmond, Virginia.

Muster Roll showing William was wounded at Malvern Hill

by March of 1863, William was back with his Company.   He was promoted to 1st Lieutenant on March 14, 1863.

Muster Roll showing William's Promotion to 1st Lieutenant

William resigned his commission by reason of disability from his injury at Malvern Hill on June 13, 1863. 

William's Letter of Resignation

William Robert Webb returned to North Carolina to recover from the wounds that plagued him.  By 1880, he and his family had relocated to Tennessee.  In 1900, William finally settled in the town of Bell Buckle in Bedford County, Tennessee.  In 1912 he was elected to the United States Senate as a Senator from Tennessee.

William Robert Webb as a Senator

William Robert Webb lived an additional 61 years following the end of the Civil War.  He died in Bell Buckle, Bedford County, Tennessee on December 19, 1926 at the age of 84.  He is buried in the Hazlewood Cemetery in Bell Buckle, Bedford County, Tennessee.

Grave of William Robert Webb

Here's my relation to William:

William Robert Webb (1842 - 1926)
is your 3rd cousin 5x removed
Alexander Smith Webb (1804 - 1849)
father of William Robert Webb
Ann Hunt Smith (1784 - 1840)
mother of Alexander Smith Webb
Amy Pomfret (1759 - 1834)
mother of Ann Hunt Smith
John Pomfret (1720 - 1814)
father of Amy Pomfret
Frances Hunt Pomfret (1747 - 1826)
daughter of John Pomfret
Pomfret Blackwell (1769 - 1828)
son of Frances Hunt Pomfret
Phoebe Blackwell (1812 - 1860)
daughter of Pomfret Blackwell
Martha Anne Currin (1834 - 1917)
daughter of Phoebe Blackwell
Phebe Lucy Daniel (1862 - 1946)
daughter of Martha Anne Currin
Valeria Lee Moss (1890 - 1968)
daughter of Phebe Lucy Daniel
Phebe Teresa Wheeler Lewis (1918 - 1977)
daughter of Valeria Lee Moss
Joyce Elaine Lewis (1948 - )
daughter of Phebe Teresa Wheeler Lewis
Chip Stokes
You are the son of Joyce


  1. Very interesting. My Ancestor, Capt.William S. Corbett , served in Co. D., 15 NC Inf. (formerly 5 N.C. Infantry Vols.) Confederate
    Where can I find information on his movements? Are they the same as you have in the earlier part? I can be emailed at Luella_6@yahoo.com
    He was wounded in a train accident the 23rd of March 1863

  2. My G-G-Grandfather was A.F.Stanton B.05 Dec 1843 D 29 April 1915 Kittrell,N.C...elisted Co E 15th NC Inf as private...he was listed in ond out of hospital due to illness,reported as a deserter who elisted Cobb's Legion Feb 1863 under assumed name...then he files an application for pension in 1901 for disability (awarded) he lists being wounded at Orangeburg,SC march 1865 with loss of right arm 2 in below shoulder joint...I cannot find anything about him from Feb 1863 to mar 1865 and then again from mar 1865 to jul 12 1870 when he marries my G-G-Grandmother in Simpson co,ky...how can I go about finding out the assumed name he used,and how did he end up severely wounded in SC in 1865 and ends up in Ky in 1870...could he have been treated for his injuries and moved to ky...he has no ties to ky at all...everyone is from Granville Co NC from 1760's to present day in Kittrell,NC