Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 26.djvu/252
242 Southern Historical Society Paper*.
COLONEL SHIELD'S SKETCH.
The Hermitage Fair-Grounds were chosen first for an infantry camp of instruction as well as for cavalry. This was in April, 1861. The Hanover Troop and the Henrico Troop were, perhaps, the first regular commands to enter the grounds. The late General W. C. Wickham was captain of the Hanover Cavalry, and Colonel J. Lucius Davis, of Henrico, was the captain of the cavalry from that county.
About the same date the Chesterfield Cavalry, Captain William B. Ball; the Powhatan, Captain Phil. St. George Cocke, and the Rich- mond, Captain J. Grattan Cabell, and others were early at the ren- dezvous. Among the first infantry commands were the First (Richmond) Regiment, Colonel P. T. Moore, and then followed company after company, and many regiments were soon organized.
THE CORPS OF CADETS.
The corps of cadets of the Virginia Military Institute were soon in place under command of Colonel William Gilham, commandant of the corps and professor of tactics. The corps was detailed as in- structors. Colonel Gilham, who had been for a while commander of the post, was made colonel of the Twenty-first Regiment, and went to the field.
(I cannot call to mind any person who can probably furnish infor- mation at this late day more accurately, perhaps, than Major T. G. Peyton, who was assigned to the Fifteenth Regiment of infantry. Being in the Howitzers, I was first with my command at Richmond College, then at Chimborazo, and moved with my battery as captain of the First Howitzers to Manassas early in May. Perhaps Major Peyton can fill the space from where I leave off to December, 1861, when I took charge.)
During the fall months of 1861 a very large authority was issued for the formation of artillery companies in Virginia, as well as in other States of the Confederacy. At the conclusion of the first year, fo r which many companies and regiments of Virginia had entered the service, some which had served as infantry had authority to change to artillery.
In November, 1861, there were about twenty-five companies re- cruited for artillery then in different camps around Richmond. Each company reported to the department headquarters, known as Hen- rico, which embraced Richmond and several miles around the city. General J. H. Winder, an old army officer, was in command, with