1ST TENNESSEE HEAVY ARTILLERY REGIMENT,
March 11, 1864, changed to 2nd U. S. Heavy Artillery
April 26, 1864, changed to 3rd U.S. Colored Heavy
Organized at Fort Pickering, Memphis, in 1863.
Smith, James E. Williams.
Jonathan S. Atwood, Co. "A". Charles W. W. Clarke, John A. Staley,
Edward P. Baker, Co. "B."
Charles H. Cole, Co. "C".
O. F. Walker, Delos Carson, Co. "D". Mustered in July 3, 1863.
John Muller, Co. "E". Mustered in February 2, 1864.
Joseph T. Parker, Joseph C. Gates, Co. "F". Mustered in August 31,
Thomas Curtis, Co. "G". Mustered in Au-gust 31, 1863.
William H. Pierce, Co. "H". Mustered in August 31, 1863.
Jacob M. Porter, Co. "I". Mustered in September 10, 1863.
Bernard Dunegan, Co. "K". Mustered in November 23, 1863.
Thomas C. Jenks, Co. "L". Mustered in December 9, 1863.
Carl Adolf Lamberg, Co. "M". "The Memphis Light Battery." (q.v.)
Mustered in November 23, 1863.
On April 15, 1863, orders were issued to recruit and muster into service
eight companies of colored men for service as heavy artillery at Fort
Pickering, Defenses of Memphis. Lieutenant I. G. Kappner was appointed
recruiting officer, and the instructions were that each company should
have one captain, two lieutenants and an orderly sergeant, who were to
be white men. The other non-commissioned officers were to come from the
colored recruits. The commissioned and non-commissioned staff officers
for the battalion were to be white. The pay and allowances were to be
the same as in other artillery organizations in the U. S. Service.
Adjutant General L. Thomas, in a
report dated December 24, 1863, listing the colored troops which had
been organized since April 1, 1863, listed the 1st Tennessee Heavy
Artillery Regiment (A.D.) with an aggregate strength of 1153 men. His
report continued: "The majority of the freedmen manifest a partiality
for the military service, and are undoubtedly happy and contented in
their position in the army. The sanitary condition of the colored troops
has materially improved of late. As far as practicable all the men have
been quartered in log huts, and in many cases in comfortable buildings.
Every care has been taken to render them efficient as soldiers, and with
On June 30, 1863, the 1st
Tennessee Heavy Artillery Regiment (African Descent) with lgnatz G.
Kappner as colonel, was reported in Colonel Charles D. Murray's Brigade,
Brigadier General James C. Veatch's Division, District of Memphis, Major
General Stephen A. Hurlbut's XVI Corps. The regiment served as garrison
troops at Fort Pickering, in the Defenses of Memphis, until July 14,
1865. During most of this time, Colonel Kappner was in command of all
the troops at Fort Pickering, and the regiment was commanded at various
times by Major Emil Smith, Lieutenant Colonel James P. Harper, and Major
James E. Williams.
On October 31, 1863, it reported 960 effectives; on
April 24, 1864, 1200; on February 28, 1865, 1169 effectives, 1301
aggregate. On March 11, 1864, Adjutant General Thomas ordered the 1st
Tennessee Heavy Artillery Regiment (African Descent) to be numbered as
the 2nd. The order continued: "All troops of African Descent will
hereafter be designated by numbers, and be reported by the numbers as
regiments of U. S. Cavalry, Heavy Artillery, Light Artillery, or
Infantry (Colored). On April 26, the order was amended so as to remove
the word "colored" as a parenthetical addition, and to include the word
as an integral part of the designation of the organization involved. At
the same time, the number of this regiment was changed from 2nd to 3rd,
and from this date the regiment was officially known as the 3rd U. S.
Colored Heavy Artillery Regiment.
On July 14, 1865, Colonel I. G. Kappner was given
command of the 2nd Infantry Brigade with orders to report to Major
General Augustus L. Chetlain, Commanding the Post and Defenses of
Memphis. The regiment was attached to Kappner's Brigade. It was last
reported in the Official Records as still on duty at Memphis on
August 18, 1865. Dyer's Compendium states it was transferred to
the District of West Tennessee in September 1865, and was mustered out
of service in April 1866.
59Th U. S. COLORED INFANTRY REGIMENT
Originally 1st U.S. Tennessee Volunteers (African Descent):
Also called 1st West Tennessee Infantry Regiment (African Descent)
Mustered in at
La Grange, Tennessee, June 6 and June 27, 1863.
Bouton (to Brevet Brigadier General)
E. Phillips, Robert Cowden
Cowden, James C. Foster
James C. Foster, Co. "A". Enrolled at La Grange, Fayette County, in
May, 1863; mustered in June 6, 1863.
Henry W. Johnson, Co. "B". Enrolled at Moscow, Fayette County, May
17, 1863; mustered in June 6, 1863.
Henry Fox, Co. "C". Enrolled at Bolivar, Hardeman County, June 1,
1863; mustered in June 6, 1863.
Christopher Fox, Co. "D". La Grange May, 1863; mustered in June 6,
Noah R. Smock, Co. "E". La Grange May, 1863; mustered in June 6,
Albert O. Marsh, Co. "F". Grange May, 1863; mustered in June 6,
Samuel Martin, Co. "G". Enrolled at La Grange in May and June;
mustered in June 27, 1863.
Jesse H. Darnell, Co. "I". Enrolled at La Grange and at Germantown,
Shelby County, in June; mustered in June 27, 1863.
Henry W. Hobbs, Co. "K". Enrolled at La Grange in May and June;
mustered in June 27, 1863.
This regiment was first reported in
the Official Records on October 31, 1863, as the 1st Tennessee
Infantry (African Descent), with 815 men, under Lieutenant Colonel
Robert E. Phillips, as an unattached regiment in the XVI Corps commanded
by Major General Stephen A. Hurlbut, but spent its entire term of
service in West Tennessee and North Mississippi.
On November 8,
1863, Brigadier General John D. Stevenson, at Corinth, Mississippi,
reported it as part of the troops under his command. On December 31,
1863, under Major Robert Cowden, as the 1st West Tennessee Infantry
(African Descent) it was still at Corinth.
On January 31,
1864, under Colonel Edward Bouton, it was reported in the 1st Colored
Brigade, District of Memphis composed of the 1st Alabama, and 1st and
2nd Tennessee Colored Regiments. On March 11, 1864, in accordance with
the policy adopted of no longer listing colored troops under state
names, the official designation was changed to 59th U. S. Infantry
Regiment (Colored). On April 11, this was changed to 59th U. S. Colored
By April 30,
Colonel Bouton was in command of the brigade, and Major Cowden of the
regiment. The Memphis Light Battery had replaced the 1st Alabama
Infantry in the brigade. By May 31, Major Cowden had been promoted to
lieutenant colonel, and the report bore a note that the regiment had
been at Memphis since May 9, 1864.
In June 1864,
the regiment went with Brigadier General Samuel D. Sturgis on his
expedition into North Mississippi culminating in the Battle of Brice's
Cross Roads on June 10, where he was disastrously defeated by Major
General Nathan B. Forrest. In this campaign, Colonel Bouton commanded
the 3rd Brigade of Colonel W. L. McMillan's 1st Division. The brigade
consisted of the 55th and 59th Infantry Regiments, and the Memphis Light
Battery, now called Company "F" 2nd U. S. Colored Light Artillery
Regiment. Lieutenant Colonel Cowden was severely wounded, and command of
the regiment fell upon Captain James C. Foster. Colonel Bouton reported
the regiment entered the campaign with 27 officers and 580 men;
casualties were three officers, 143 men killed, wounded and missing.
expedition of note was with Major General Andrew J. Smith, from July
~21, during which the battle of Harrisburg was fought on July 14, with
Confederate forces under Lieutenant General Stephen D. Lee and Major
General N. B. Forrest. In this campaign Colonel Bouton commanded the 1st
Brigade, and Major (formerly Captain) James C. Foster the regiment.
Casualties were one killed, ten wounded, three missing.
returned to Memphis, remaining in the same brigade until January 7,
1865. Lieutenant Colonel Cowden had resumed command by September 30,
1864. On January 7, 1865, in the organization of the Post and Defenses
of Memphis, the 46th, 55th, 59th and 61st U S. Colored Infantry
Regiments formed the 2nd Brigade, under Colonel Frank A. Kendrick. On
February 23, this brigade, with the exception of the 59th was ordered to
New Orleans, and the 59th was sent to Fort Pickering, Defenses of
Memphis, where Colonel Ignatz P. Kappner was in command. On March 7, the
regiment reported 725 effectives, aggregate present and absent 869. The
regiment remained at Fort Pickering until July 14, 1865, when, in the
organization of the District of West Tennessee.
Kappner was given command of the 2nd Brigade, of which the 59th was a
member, with orders to report to Brevet Major General Augustus L.
Chetlain, Commanding the Post and Defenses of Memphis. On August 18,
1865, Brevet Major General John E. Smith, commanding the District of
West Tennessee, listed the 59th as one of the regiments on duty in his
district. This was the last record found in the Official Records,
but Dyer's Compendium states the regiment was mustered out
January 31, 1866.
History of Fort Pickering
The Confederates occupied old
Fort Pickering. Located at present-day Chickasaw Heritage Park (formerly DeSoto Park), two ancient Indian mounds (DeSoto Mounds) were converted
into CSA redoubts; the largest (Chisca Mound) was used as a four-gun
redoubt with an interior magazine; the smaller mound was used as a
three-gun redoubt. The present-day National Ornamental Metal Museum
(built 1930's) is located at the site of the old Marine Hospital.
The Union enlarged and expanded the works around old Fort Pickering
upon capturing the city in June 1862, enclosing supply houses, depots,
horse corrals, and barracks with 12 lettered batteries and redans. The
earthworks of the new Fort Pickering stretched from Beale Street south
to the DeSoto Mounds, including present-day Tom Lee Park, Ashburn-Coppock
Park, Martyr's Park, and Crump Park. Traces of the Union earthworks
still exist. Four outworks of Fort Pickering were planned but never
built. Twelve numbered outer batteries circled the city to the east.
On May 1-2, 1866, Memphis
suffered its worst race riot in history. Some forty-six African
Americans and two whites died during the riot. A Joint Congressional
Committee reported seventy-five persons injured, one hundred persons
robbed, five women raped, ninety-one homes burned, four churches and
eight schools burned and destroyed, and seventeen thousand dollars in
federal property destroyed. Hundreds of blacks were jailed, and almost
all other freedmen fled town until the disturbance ended. For two days,
white mobs, which included policemen, firemen, and some businessmen,
attacked the freedmen's camps and neighborhoods.
The riot started after an alarm went out that African American
soldiers from Fort Pickering, on the south boundary of downtown Memphis,
had killed several policemen who tried to arrest a black soldier. In
response to the reports, Union General George Stoneman disarmed the
soldiers and locked them in their barracks, leaving nearby freedmen's
settlements vulnerable to the white mobs that soon attacked women,
children, and defenseless men, as well as the northern missionaries who
served as ministers and teachers for the freedmen.
The Memphis riots reflected the anger and frustration felt by
many white citizens and particularly former Confederates, who had
suffered the agony of a bitter defeat at the hands of a black and white
Union army. Irish immigrants, who had sided with the Confederacy,
especially hated the freedmen who dominated the skilled and unskilled
jobs that had previously served as a mechanism for upward mobility in
the Irish community. Some downtown businessmen participated in the mob
because they resented the hordes of penniless freedmen on the streets.
Other rioters wanted revenge for the Union occupation. The use of
African American soldiers as patrolmen with power to order whites to
"move on" was especially galling to many. Finally, the riots reflected
the attitudes of most white citizens toward the former slaves who were
then free and soon demanding equal rights.
One outcome of the Memphis riot (and a similar riot in New Orleans)
was the congressional move toward Radical Reconstruction. The Radical
Republicans passed a Civil Rights Bill and the Fourteenth Amendment,
guaranteeing citizenship, equal protection of the laws, and due process
to former slaves. Tennessee was forced to ratify the Fourteenth
Amendment before being allowed to return to the Union (July 1866).
Paradoxically, the former slaves became citizens, voters, and
officeholders in part due to the Reconstruction acts passed in response
to the race riots in Memphis and elsewhere.