Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 16.djvu/374
368 Southern Historical Society Papers.
sissippi), and our people resolved to put another in the field in its place, and I was selected to raise and organize it. Our State was threatened with invasion, and Tishomingo county was the threatened point. All felt that every man who could bear arms should rise up and stand between his home and the enemy, and he who would not do so was deemed unworthy to be called a Mississippian. Churches felt that they had no use for pastors then fighting men were in demand.. I was restless, and my blood was hot within me. The thought of sitting still until the enemy would overrun my home and family was more than I could bear. The result is soon told: I raised and organized the Thirty-second Mississippi regiment in a little less time than any other regiment was ever raised and organized in north Mississippi. The regiment was organized at Corinth on the third of April, 1862, and I was unanimously elected colonel. This was a few days before the battle of Shiloh ; but at the time of that battle the regiment had not been equipped or armed, and was not in the fight, but we received prisoners and captured property, and accompanied prisoners to the interior.
After the battle, my regiment was assigned to Brigadier-General S. A. M. Wood's brigade of Hardee's division. I was very soon the senior colonel in the brigade, except Colonel W. B. Wood, of the Sixteenth Alabama, who was for nearly a year absent from the army. Then, in the absence of the brigadier-general, I was entitled to the command. I was frequently thrown in command of the brigade before the commencement of the Kentucky campaign.
At Chattanooga, before the campaign commenced, the army was reorganized. General Hardee was placed in command of a corps and Major-General Buckner placed in command of our division. As soon as the army entered Kentucky, General Buckner left the division for a time, to encourage the enlistment of Kentucky troops, and Gen- eral Wood, being the senior brigadier, was placed in command of the division, which left me in command of the brigade. I had engaged in some active skirmishing about Corinth, but the battle of Perryville was the first regular engagement I was ever in. Just before the com- mencement of the battle, General Buckner resumed the command of the division and General Wood of the brigade, which sent me back to my regiment. But before we got near the enemy General Wood was slightly wounded by a shell, and I resumed the command of the brigade. So, I commanded a brigade in the first battle I was ever engaged in. But I was soon painfully wounded in my left arm, by which I was disabled about eight weeks. At the battle of Murfrees-