The 28th Louisiana Volunteers In The Civil War.

The 28th Louisiana Volunteers In The Civil War.

By Terry L. Jones

Winner 1978 Overdyke Graduate Award

I'd like to thank both Terry L. Jones, of Northeast Louisiana University,* and Alan Thompson, of the North Louisiana Historical Association,** for their kind permission to reprint this paper. Through their efforts, the memory of the brave men of 28th Louisiana Infantry will live on!
Steve Pipes, Webmaster of the 28th Infantry page.

In the Spring of 1862 Louisiana was on the verge of collapse. Forts Jackson and St. Philip, on the Mississippi River, had been successfully passed by the enemy, and New Orleans, Baton Rouge, and Natchez had fallen like so many dominoes.

At this time many new companies and regiments were being organized in North Louisiana. Although most of the area was in no immediate danger, the people saw the need to stop the invasion before it reached their homes. Some joined these organizations through dedication to the Confederate cause. Others were dragged in relunctantly, in compliance with the Conscription Act, or joined voluntarily to escape the stigma of being labeled a "conscript"(1)

One of these regiments was the 28th Louisiana Volunteers. History has largely overlooked the role of these North Louisiana regiments in the Civil War. This is partly because a large part of the Confederate records covering these units was lost or destroyed in the final days of the war. Also, few diaries or journals were kept by the mostly poor, uneducated members of the units. Finally, such regiments as the 28th were not invloved in the more famous battles of the war, and, therefore, have been ignored.

But the North Louisiana men of the 28th served their cause well. The suffering and hardships they endured were equal to any of Lee's veterans. Death was just as final in the canebrakes along the Teche as it was on the fields of Gettysburg. Shattered legs received the same agonizing amputation, and the heart-break of the dead's loved ones was just as tearful in a piney-hill cabin as it was in a pillared Virginia mansion.

It should be pointed out here, to avoid confusion, that there were two Louisiana regiments with the numerical designation of 28th. This was due to the hectic way the units were organized after the fall of New Orleans. The other 28th regiment was made up of South Louisiana men and was known as 28th (Thomas') Regiment after its first commander, Major Allen Thomas. It saw action at Vicksburg and surrendered there on July 4, 1863. The 28th Regiment from North Louisiana was known as 28th (Gray's) after its organizer and first commander, Colonel Henry Gray of Bienville Parish.(2)

Like most other Confederate regiments, the 28th was a conglomeration of companies raised in different parishes. Usually, the more influential men of a parish would call meetings and begin to organize a company. These companies would then hold elections for officers. Most of these companies formed in North Louisiana went to Monroe, which was designated as a training camp under the Conscription Act of April 10, 1862.(3) It was here in May 1862, that Gray organized ten of these independent companies into the 28th Louisiana Volunteers, of which he was elected colonel.

The following list shows where each of the ten companies originated:

Bienville Parish gave Companies A and H.(4)
Bossier gave Company B.(5)
Claiborne sent Company D.(6)
Jackson gave Companies C and I.(7)
Winn gave Companies E, G, and K.(8)
Winn and Jackson also combined to give Company F.(9)

After the regiment was organized at Monroe, it departed to Vienna where it was to camp and train. For two hot months Colonel Gray and his officers drilled the raw recruits and tried to instill military discipline.(10) The 28th, like many other units during the Civil War, was probably forced to drill with sticks or wooden rifles because of the shortage of weapons. Firing practice, as we know it today, was virtually unheard of. Many times the soldiers went into battle without knowing the proper use of the rifles, attested to by the fact that scores of rifles were sometimes picked up after a battle with several unfired rounds crammed down the barrel.

After their training, the 28th moved to Monroe, where it began its three years of active duty. On July 28, Brig. Gen. A. G. Blanchard, commander of the Monroe Department, sent a note to Secretary of War George Randolph in Richmond reporting the arrival of the 28th and requesting that a shipment of arms be sent to the department ' (11)

Even though 10,000 rifles were sent across the Mississippi River to the Monroe area, apparently the 28th recieved very few of them. On Sept. 1, a captain reported to Richmond that there were only 1,200 arms for the entire department, most of these being shotguns.(12)

While detailed in the Monroe Department, the regiment saw no action stationed near Milliken's Bend on the Mississippi, they were part of the troops protecting the vital Monroe to Vicksburg Railroad.(13) While here, the men suffered a number of losses from sickness that devastated the troops living in the swamps along the railroad. In September 1862 only 1,000 out of 3,000 men in the Monroe De artment could be furnished for duty. The rest were on the sick lists! (14)

In November the 28th was ordered to the Bayou Teche region to help Gen. Richard Taylor stop the enemy invasion there. Upon arriving, they were assigned to Gen. Alfred Mouton's Brigade at Camp Bisland, a small fort on the Teche just above Patterson. Col. Gray soon became the commander of the post and was ordered to keep an eye on enemy movements in the Grand Lake area.(15) After nearly a year in the Army, the Louisiana men had yet to face the enemy. Their chance came shortly in the form of the Yankee gunboat Diana. While on a reconnaisance mission in the upper Grand Lake area in early March, the Diana's commander disobeyed orders and moved too far up a channel of the Atchafalaya. Since the entire area was under the watchful eye of the Confederates, his blunder was soon exploited by a detachment of the 28th, which along with other units, was lying in Wait.

The Confederates sprang the ambush on the ship and for three hours poured volley after volley of rifle and cannon fire into it. To the men penned up in the Diana it was a nightmarish hell. The decks were slippery with blood and the groans of the wounded drifted through the darkened, smoke-filled ship. The roar of the Rebel guns, the splat of minie balls against the sides of the ship, and the crash of artillery shells splintering the decks helped create an unforgettable scene.

The Diana's commander, after seeing one crewman after another fall to the deck from the Rebells accurate fire, finally raised the white flag. The confederates then removed the 150 sailors, 30 of whom were dead or seriously wounded, and took over the vessel.(16) Taylor had the Winn Parish men of Company K to move the ship up the Teche to help cover Camp Bisland."(17)

In early April, Gen. Nathaniel Banks began moving into the Teche area. His plan called for landing 12,000 troops at Berwick, who were to move up the Teche to Bisland. Gen. Cuvier Grover, meanwhile, would land his 4,000 men near Franklin and move down the Teche to Bisland. If all went well, Taylor and his army would be crushed between the pincers.(18)

When informed of this move, Taylor divided his forces, sending some of his men up to Franklin to try and prevent Grover's landing, while the rest, including the 28th, dug in at Bisland to stop the lower drive. The 28th would hold the center of the line while Company K, on board the Diana, anchored in mid-stream to bolster the defenses. In all, there were less than 5,000 Rebels to stop both Banks and Grover.

Banks' 12,000 men, under Generals William Emory and Godfery Weitzel, arrived before the Rebel works on April 12. For two days they bombarded the breastwork's. Taylor was afraid that the screaming of the shells and the trembling thuds of the balls slamming into the outside embankment would unnerve the raw troops of the 28th and the other units that had to endure this fire. To calm them he lit a cigarette and strolled casually along the breastworks, unmindful of the incoming fire. Taylor observed:

'. . . Near the line was a low tree with spreading branches, which a young officer, Bradford by name [Captain Robert Bradford of Co. F, 28th Infantry] proposed to climb so as to have a better view. I gave him my field glass, and this plucky youngster sat in his tree as quietly as in a chimney corner, though the branches around were cut away [by the cannon fire]. These examples, especially that of Captain Bradford, gave confidence to the men, who began to expose themselves, and some casualties were suffered in consequence."(19)

The barrage continued to pound the men and soon began to concentrate on the Diana. Seven men were killed or wounded and the ship was disabled when a shell pierced the railroad iron armor and exploded in the engine room. A message was sent to Taylor telling him of the predicament. He found the boat lying against the bank under such a heavy fire that the water around it seemed to be boiling from the shells raining down upon it.(20) An officer came on deck to talk with Taylor but was shot off immediately, Finally, Taylor had to agree to let her back out of range for repairs before the Whole crew was gone.

The Yankees made several half-hearted attempts to storm the Confederate entrenchments, but were hurled back each time. In his official report of the battle, Taylor reported that the 28th, along with a detachment of artillery, stopped every advance upon the center of the line and thwarted all attempts to break it.(21)

While the fighting raged around Bisland, Grover succeeded in landing his men above Franklin, blocking Taylor's only escape route. Taylor had no choice but to pull out of his trenches around Bisland under the cover of darkness and try and hack his way through this flanking force. The men silently left their trenches that night and moved towards Franklin.

Taylor was waiting for Grover to make his move on the morning of April 14. The Confederate battle line was on a plantation near a place called Irish Bend. When Grover's men moved out, they marched into a bottleneck, with the Teche on their left, a swamp on their right, and the Rebels dead ahead.

When the enemy made contact, they briefly drew back in surprise, not having expected any resistance this side of Bisland. However, they quickly regrouped and a brisk fight was underway when Col. Gray and the 28th arrived after their midnight march from Bisland. They were immediately posted on the extreme left of the line on the edge of the swamp. This brought Taylor's Strength up to nearly 1,000 men. With these few men he charged!

The screaming Rebels came bursting out of a strip of woods they had been hiding in and ran across a muddy cane field towards the startled yankees. The forward enemy regiments, taking cover in shallow ditches, tried to make a stand, but were soon outflanked and caught in a terrible crossfire. The Federals later recalled that the Louisiana men used "buck and ball," a type of musket round that included one rifle ball and three buckshot. This was a deadly load at close range, proven by the fact that the 159th New York Regiment, that faced the 28th, lost 115 men our of a total of 375 in the fight!(22)

In this charge it is known that the 28th had Col. Gray and Capt. Bradford wounded. There were others who were killed or wounded, but their names are unknown because the casualty records for the regiment no longer exist.

Meanwhile, the Diana was ordered to throw its shells into the enemy lines while Taylor evacuated his supply train to New Iberia by a cut off road. Taylor left Gen. Mouton in command of the troops at Irish Bend and told him to use the Diana to cover his own withdrawal when the time came. He was to then abandon and burn the ship to keep it from falling back into enemy hands.

Through a mix-up in orders, all the troops were pulled out of the area except for the Diana and her crew of the 28th. They were left behind banging away with their guns, covering the retreat of their comrades. Finally, the ship was abandoned and burned ' but most of the survivors of the crew were captured in a very short time.

The 28th suffered a large number of casualties compared to its size. Many of Company K were killed or wounded on the Diana, and most of the survivors were captured. The remainder of the regiment suffered a number of killed and wounded, and lost heavily in prisoners taken during the fighting on the 14th. Most of these POW'S, however, were realeased Within a month through the parole system and rejoined the regiment later.

In his report of the fighting, Taylor had high praise for the 28th:

Col. Gray and his regiment. . . deserve most favorable mention. Their gallantry in action is enhanced by the excellent discipline which they have preserved, and no veteran soldiers could have excelled them in their conduct during the trying scenes through which they passed (23)

He also wrote of the Diana: .[The] crew conducted themselves with the greatest bravery and intrepidity. . . "(24)

The 28th's baptism of fire had been a violent and trying one, but was bravely met and endured. The confidence and pride instilled in them would serve them well on the bloody fields ahead.

After the battles along the Teche, the 28th followed Taylor northward, with the enemy in pursuit. Col. Arthur W. Hyatt, a member of the 28th's Brigade, described the forced march in his journal:

A regular race from the enemy. Feet sore, dust intolerable . . . . When we halt ' we squat ourselves down, no matter where--in the sand, in the mud, anywhere--and our only hope is that the halt will last fifteen minutes. At night you fall down too tired to be careful of selections, and go to sleep . . . without taking off clothes, shoes or cap . . . . (25)

After reaching Alexandria, Banks tired of the chase and returned south. The 28th, along with most of Taylor's other infantry, stayed around Alexandria until August, at which time they returned to the Teche area. At this time, Gen. Mouton was given command of the entire Division and Col. Gray was made Brigade commander to fill the vacancy created by Mouton's promotion. Capt. William Walker, of Company K, having been promoted to lieutenant-colonel earlier, took over the regiment.(26)

On Aug. 28, the 28th, along with several other units, was ordered to march to New Iberia to quell a mutiny in Col ' James Major's Brigade of Texas cavalry. The Texans had begun to get disorderly and Gray's Brigade was moved to the area to head off trouble. A few days later, however, the Texans were transferred to Shreveport, and Gray's men were left around New Iberia to defend the area vacated by them.(27)

The 28th remained in South Louisiana for several months. During this time, they crisscrossed the entire area on numerous marches. In September the regiment participated in a firefight on Bayou Fordoche, near Morganza, in which about 400 Union soldiers were captured.(28)

Finally, the entire division of Gen. Mouton was ordered to cross the Red River and march to Monroe to help protect a shipment of arms that was coming across the Mississippi River. The men of the 28th after a long absence, were going home.(29)

On Dec. 15, Gray's Brigade crossed the Red at Pineville and began the march. They were immediately lashed by foul weather, described by Felix Poche, a member of Gray's staff:

The thunder roared, lightening struck all around us and immense pines ... fell by the hundreds... I learned several persons had been hurt.

Soon the ground was covered with water . . . The wagons . . . were unable to pass. . .

Thus those poor soldiers were drenched to the skin, shivering with cold, starving and dog tired after a march of fifteen miles, having nothing with which to cover themselves, and spent a miserable night near to the fire, as best they could.(30)

Conditions did not improve at dawn. The supply wagons could not pass over the flooded roads, so the 28th had to endure growling stomachs until the train pulled into camp 24 hours later.(31)

As the army marched through Winn Parish, occasional shrieks of joy could be heard as a bystanding woman recognized a son or husband in the muddy, shuffling crowd of soldiers that were strung out five miles on'. the Winnfield to Vernon road. In some instances, tearful pleading would get one of the 28th's soldiers an overnight pass to spend some time with the family he had not seen for nearly two years. These scenes were repeated as the regiment continued the march to Monroe.(32)

Dec. 24 found the regiment camped in Jackson Parish. It's piney hills may not have been very posh, but Christmas Eve was Christmas Eve and deserved to be celebrated no matter where one was. Poche describes that Christmas over a hundred years ago in the cold forests of North Louisiana: "Tonight, despite the bad colds suffered by the men, it was easy to realize it was Christmas Eve by the shouting and noise in the regiments.,"(33)

Christmas Day was spent marching on to the Ouachita River, which was crossed on the 27th under a cold, dreary winter sky. It is not difficult to understand why more men died from sickness during the Civil War than from battle, when they had to live under such harsh conditions as the 28th did in the winter of 1863-64. Poche entered in his journal on Dec. 31 the following: 11 . . . The weather was extreme, in the morning it rained and later it snowed,'and the ground froze. One can well understand the misery and suffering of our poor soldiers without tents, and practically no fire..."(34)

Hyatt's New Year's Day entry adds to the description. The ponds frozen and the boys sliding on ice . . . The ground too cold to lie down. Pitiable at night to see them nodding around campfires with only one blanket. This is soldiering, this is."(35)

After spending several weeks in the Monroe Department, the men of the 28th found that all their suffering had been in vain. The Yankees had been able to stop the shipment of arms from crossing the Mississippi while the regiment had been freezing beside the campfires.(36) Therefore, Gray's Brigade recrossed the Ouachita in late January and returned to Pineville. For the 28th, the brief homecoming was over and the war was about to explode in all its deadly fury once again. For many, the fleeting footsteps across their home soil was to be their last.

The regiment remained in the Alexandria area until Gen. Banks started his Red River Campaign in mid-March. On March 14, Fort DeRussey, below Alexandria on the Red River, fell to the Yankees, and Taylor evacuated the city. The army started a brutal retreat towards Natchitoches. Poche said of the retreat, "That march . . . was exceedingly hard on our little Brigade as our men marched more than fifty miles in two days."(37)

After retreating through Natchitoches, Taylor finally chose a place to make his stand against Banks. It was a large field about three miles southeast of Mansfield. On April 8, he posted his men along the northern edge of the field astride the Mansfield-Pleasant Hill road. Gray's Brigade, made up of the 28th, 18th, and Consolidated Crescent Louisiana Regiments, was posted behind a fence on the left of the line. Taylor had 9,000 men to stop 30,000 Yankees.

The enemy host appeared on the fringe of the opposite wood that afternoon. As they filed into formation, several companies of Gray's Brigade, including the Bienville Parish men of Company A, were ordered to cross the fence and as sharpshooters to advance and harass the enemy.(38) They kept up a brisk fire with the Yankees until mid-afternoon. Few of these men were hurt for the enemy fired too high, but a number of soldiers in the 28th and other regiments left behind the fence were wounded as the balls went over the sharpshooters and slammed into their ranks.(39)

At about four o'clock, upon seeing that the enemy was still deploying men, Taylor ordered Mouton's Division to open the attack. When the signal was given, the 28th climbed over the fence and started trotting towards the enemy a half mile away. To reach the Federals, they had to go down the hill they were on, cross a ravine at the bottom, and run up the exposed slope of the hill on which the enemy was posted.

When the Rebels broke out of their covering woods and began to run down the hill, the Union batteries opened up on them. The 28th began to trickle casualties as the solid shot tore gaps through the line. As the men reached the ravine, the firing increased. Men fell by the score, riddled by musket fire and grape shot. Mouton ordered them to lie down for protection and to catch their breath before making the final push up the hill.

Then with a yell, they sprang up and ran up the slope amidst screaming shells and whistling minie balls. When they got within 150 feet of the enemy line, the rail fence exploded in flame and smoke as the Yankee's let loose a well-aimed volley of musketry. Hundreds of Gray's men were cut down before the fence. Three colonels of the Brigade--the commanding officers of the 18th and Crescent, and Col. Walker of the 28th--were killed. In this one volley the Crescent Regiment (positioned besides the 28th) lost 35 killed and 150 wounded!(40) Hyatt, whose company lost 29 out of 42 men, and was himself wounded, describes the charge. "Minie balls like hail. The fire of the enemy was so terrible that almost every man in the direct attack of Mouton's [Gray's] Brigade was struck with a bullet."(41) Seven standard bearers of the Crescent were shot down in rapid succession!

The 28th was staggered by the accurate fire of the enemy. According to Poche: "The balls and grape shot crashing about us whistled terribly and plowed the ground and beat our soldiers down even as a storm tears down the trees of a forest."(42)

Seeing that the assault was stalling, Maj. W. F. Blackman, Adjutant General of the 28th, wheeled his horse up, grabbed the regiment's flag, and rode directly towards the smoking fence, calling on the men to follow. Seeing the colors advance, the rest of the regiment renewed their charge and reached the fence, scattering the enemy,(43) But it was a terrible price. The route of the 28th could be followed by the dead and dying men that lay strewn across the bloodstained slope to their rear.

Later, a captured Union soldier said that they had seen Blackman grab the colors and charge towards them, and had tried especially hard to bring him down. Over 200 shots were fired at him, but he escaped unhurt!(44)

Once the fence was taken, the men were allowed to rest and regroup. While pausing, they had a chance to view the battlefield. It was a ghastly scene! Through the smoke, the dead'and dying, both Blue and Gray, could be seen lying thick in all directions. After the battle, more dead soldiers were found on this part of the field than any other place. One of those was Gen. Mouton, killed in the charge while trying to protect a group of enemy soldiers who were trying to surrender.(45) Upon Mouton's death, Gen. Camille de Polignac took over the Division and pressed the assault.

After a few minutes rest, the Rebels pushed forward once again and pursued the Yankees to another defensive line. Here the attack again stalled until a Lt. Kidd, of Jackson Parish, seized the 28th's flag and took it towards the enemy. As with Blackman, the men at once followed and succeeded in breaking the line and capturing the enemy's cannon.(46) After this, the Union troops orderly retreat became a rout. They threw away their rifles and packs and were chased for over a mile to a small bayou three miles from their original line.

When the Confederates came up at dusk, another assault was ordered for the exhaused men of the 28th, for this bayou was the only source of water for miles around. Once again the surrounding hills echoed volleys of rifle fire as Blue and Gray slugged it out in the twilight. As darkness settled in, the firing sputtered out. When the smoke cleared, the Rebels were in control of the water and the enemy was retreating towards Pleasant Hill.(47)

April 8, 1864, had been a vicious bloody day. Mouton had led nearly 2,200 men across the field in the first attack. Twenty-five minutes later, 800 of them lay dead or wounded on the smoking slope, a casualty rate equal to that sufferedby the British during the more famous "Charge of the Light Brigade" at Balaklava in 1854.(48) That charge was immortalized by Tennyson, but how many know of the bravery and losses of the Louisiana Brigade ten years later?

But the Louisiana men gave as well as they received. The commander of the Union division that faced Mouton reported that nearly all his officers were killed or wounded and that almost half of the entire division was left on the field.(49)

It is impossible to tell how many men of the 28th were killed that day. No regimental casualty rolls exist for the battle, but it can be assumed that it was very heavy judging from the losses of the 18th and Crescent Regiments, which were on either side of it. Two officers known to have died were Col. Walker and Capt. J. T. Lewis, both of Winn Parish. Records also show that a number of the men were admitted to the Confederate hospital in Shreveport shortly after the battle.(50)

On April 9, the regiment (now under Maj. Thomas Poole, after Walker's death) was placed in reserve along with the rest of Mouton's (now Polignac's) Division since it had lost so heavily the day before.

They were called into action at Pleasant Hill late in the day, but did not suffer too heavily in the short, fierce fight along the Pleasant Hill Road due to their entering the fight so late.

After the Battle of Pleasant Hill, the 28th was allowed to encamp and rest while other units pursued Banks back towards Alexandria. While recuperating, Col. Gray was promoted to Brig. General and Maj. Poole to Colonel.(51) During the final year of war, the 28th was sometimes known as-the 28th (Poole's) Regiment.

The regiment finally moved out of camp and took up the pursuit of Banks. They passed through Natchitoches and Alexandria and on May 15, caught up with the enemy near Mansura. The regiment was ordered out in front of the artillery the next day, where they came under a heavy fire. The enemy was anxious to knock out the Confederate cannon and began to shell the area with 20 and 30 pound shot. Luckily, few of the rounds exploded, so, other than shaken nerves, little damage was done.(52)

Contact between the two armies was broken off before a real battle developed. Banks wanted only to get away and the Confederates were not strong enough to stop him.

The next day, however, a larger, and for the 28th the last, battle was fought. Banks had been brought to bay at Yellow Bayou, near Simmesport, and Taylor hoped to make the best of it before the enemy could gain safety across the Atchafalaya.

Taylor formed a battle line'with the 28th on the extreme left. When ordered forward, they charged with a lusty yell into a patch of dense woods, and were promptly blasted back out again with cannon fire. The men retreated out of the thicket somewhat confused. Polignac regrouped them and sent the regiment flying into the thick woods a second time. This time they fought their way to the enemy's line and a violent hand-to-hand fight erupted. Empty muskets became deadly clubs, and the clank and thwack of musket butt against bayonet rang out across the woods. It was a vicious, bloody struggle with each side refusing to yield. Finally, though, the men of the 28th were beaten and clubbed back by the stubborn Yankee defenders. The firing from this last charge had set the thick woods on fire and a wall of flame prevented a third try against the enemy. Taylor, therefore, sullenly withdrew and Banks crossed the river.(53)

In this bitter struggle the 28th lost a number of men. Lt. James Simmons, of Claiborne Parish, is known to have been killed, and a large number were wounded and captured during the wild melee.(54) Again, incomplete records make it impossible to ascertain the exact number of killed and wounded.

After Banks escaped across the muddy Atchafalaya, Taylor allowed the 28th to bivouac and take a much needed rest. However, in the next few weeks, camps had to be changed because vile, stagnant drinking water caused sickness to spread through the regiment. This problem was worsened by the army surgeons, who inaccurately reported to the generals that the men had access to wells and didn't have to use the water from the surrounding lakes and bayous. This was a cover-up that caused considerable ill-will throughout the camps.(55)

After suffering through several weeks in the miserable camps, new orders came for the division. Polignac was ordered to march north to Monroe and move into Arkansas to reinforce the Confederate forces there.(56)

The 28th crossed the Red River at Pineville on August 1, and marched to Monroe by way of Jonesville and Sicily Island. The march under a hot sun was. grueling. While at Sicily Island, smallpox broke out in camp. The infected soldier, however, was quickly removed from camp and an epidemic was avoided. The suffering continued as the regiment crossed the Boeuf Prairie, where on several occasions men fell out from heat stroke.(57)

The regiment went through Monroe and entered Arkansas on September 16. It is difficult to keep track of the 28th from this time through the end of the war because Poche, whose diary tells much of the regiment's movements, was transferred that same month. It is known ' however, that they spent the winter of 1864-65 in Camden and returned in February 1865 by way of Minden to camp on Bayou Cotile, near Alexandria.(58)

The regiment was still in the Alexandria area when word of Lee's surrender reached Louisiana in April. At that time, the military organization of the state began to fall apart. Realizing that further resistance was useless, men began to drift out of camp and go home. Whole regiments dissolved overnight, the men dividing up the supplies and going home.

The 28th was no exception. With the collapse of the Trans-Mississippi Department imminent, the men knew that the cause they had fought for for three bloody years was now a "Lost Cause." So, they, too, slipped out of camp at night, not waiting for the formal surrender, and returned to homes to await further developments. When the surrender terms were accepted on May 26, the soldiers left their homes once again and traveled to Monroe, Shreveport, or Natchitoches to be paroled. It was an inglorious end for such an outstanding fighting unit.


*Terry L. Jones,
Associate Professor of History
Northeast La. University
Department of History and Government
Monroe, LA 71209
E-mail contact -

** Alan Thompson, Editor
North Louisiana Historical Asso. Journal
Dept. of History & Social Sciences
LSU in Shreveport
Shreveport, LA 71115
The Journal is published 3 times a year and membership is $25/year.

1.John Q. Anderson, ed., Brokenburn: The Journal of Kate Stone 1861- 1868 (Baton Rouge, 1972), 103, 138; Napier Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana (Baton Rouge, 1964), 256.

2.Fowell A. Casey, "Confederate Units from North Louisiana," North Louisiana Historical Association Journal, VI (Spring 1975), 11 0-111.

3.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 356.

4.Ibid., 61; Taken from individual records in Andrew B. Booth, Comp., Records of Louisiana Confederate Soldiers and Louisiana Confederate Commands (Baton Rouge, 1920).

5.(n.a.), Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northwest Louisiana (Nashville, 1890), 118.

6.D. W. Harris an B. M. Hulse, History of Claiborne Parish (New Orleans, 1886), 238-240.

7.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 62; taken from individual records i@Booth's Louisiana Confederate Soldiers.

8.(n.a.), Memoirs of Northwest Louisiana, 492.

9.Casey, "Confederate Units from North Louisiana," 111.

10.Harris and Hulse, History of Claiborne Parish, 239.

11.U. S. Congress, The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies, Series 1, Vol. XV, (Washington, 1880-1902), 790.

12.Ibid., 805.

13.Tbi-d., Series I, Vol. XXIV, Part III, 1056-1057; Harris and Hulse, History of Claiborne Parish, 238.

14, Official Records, Series I, Vol, XV, 805.

15. ibid., 388.

16.John.D. Winters, The Civil War In Louisiana (Baton Rouge, 1963), 221,- 222.

17.(n.a.) Memoir of Northwest Louisiana, 492.

18.Winters ' Civil-War in Louisiana, 227.

19.Richard Taylor, Destruction and Reconstruction, ed. Richard B. Harwell (New York, 1955), 155.

20.Ibid., 156.

21.Official Records, Series-I, Vol. XV, 388-396.

22.Morris Raphael, The Battle of the Bayou Country (Detroit, 1975), 114.

23.Official Records, Series I, Vol. XV, 395.

24. Ibid.

25.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 10.

26.Ibid., 39.

27.Felix Pierre Poche, A Louisiana Confederate: Diary of Felix Pierre Poche, ed. Edwin C. Bearss (Natchitoches, La., 1972), 23, 256.

28.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana , 11.

29.Ibid., 270.

30.Ibid., 63, 64.


32.Interview with W. I. Warner, whose grand-father was a member of the 28th, June 11, 1977, Winn Parish, La.

33.Poche, Louisiana Confederate, 78.


35.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 12.

36. Poche, Louisiana Confederate, 78.

37.Ibid., T2.

38.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 62.

39.Poche, Louisiana Confederate, 106.

40.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 13.


42. Poche, Louisiana Confederate, 107.

43.Bartlett, Military Record ot Louisiana, 62.


45. Ibid., 42.

46. Ibid., 62.

47.Alonzo H. Plummer, Confederate Victory at Mansfield (Mansfield, La., 1969), 26, 27.

48.Rossiter Johnson, Campfires and Battlefields (New York, 1967), 475

49.Plummer, Confederate Victory at MansfieId, 23.

50.Booth, Louisiana Confederate Soldiers, from individual records.

51.Poche, Louisiana Confederate., 128, 129.

52.Official--Records, Series 1, Vol. XXXIV, Part I, 629-631.

53.Winters, Civil War in Louisiana, 377.

54..Harris and Hulse, History of Claiborne Parish, 239; Booth, Louisiana Confederate Soldiers, from individual records.

55.Poche, Louisiana Confederate, 124-129.


57.Ibid., 153-162.

58.Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, 43.

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