Kentucky in the Civil War

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United States  Gotoarrow.png  U.S. Civil War  Gotoarrow.png  Kentucky  Gotoarrow.png  Kentucky Military  Gotoarrow.png  Kentucky in the Civil War


Battle of Mill Springs, Kentucky, January 19, 1862

Introduction

Kentucky was a border state during the Civil War. Its legislators preferred neutrality at the beginning of the war, since it had strong ties to both sides. In the 1861 election, most of the state congressional seats went to Union sympathizers. In September 1861, a Confederate army went into Kentucky, thus breaking its neutrality, and a Union army followed. During the war, many battles and guerilla campaigns were fought in Kentucky.  Kentucky soldiers served in both the Union and Confederate armies.[1]

Kentucky Military Units

Most units were numbered, however, some were named. See the table below for lists of the regiments, battalions, batteries, and unassigned companies.


The information in the lists of Kentucky Military Units comes from the Civil War Soldiers and Sailors web site. This web site can also be searched by the name of a soldier.


Kentucky Union Units by Number or by Name
Union Units
1st-19th
20th-68th
A to Z





Kentucky Union Units by Type of Unit
Union Units
Infantry
Cavalry
Artillery
Other





Kentucky Confederate Units by Number or by Name
Confederate Units
1st-14th
A-Z






Kentucky Confederate Units by Type of Unit
Confederate Units
Infantry
Cavalry
Artillery
Other



Civil War (1861–1865)

Soldiers from Kentucky served in both the Union and Confederate armies. The state adopted a policy of neutrality until September 1861, when a pro-Union element gained control of the legislature. Though Kentucky never seceded from the Union, there was a sizable pro-Confederate element in the state. Indexes to the service records of Civil War Soldiers are at the Family History Library and the National Archives. The service records are available at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

Civil War Pension Index Cards - A free Internet index to pension applications of veterans who served in the US Army between 1861-1917 is available on FamilySearch Record Search. Each card gives the soldier’s name, application and certificate numbers, state of enlistment, and might include rank and death information. Other wars, of that time period, may be included.

Union

  • Kentucky. Adjutant General. Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky, 1861–1866. 2vols. 1866–1867. Reprint, Utica, Kentucky.: McDowell Publications, 1984. (Family History Library films 1463599–600.) This book contains background information on the war, brief information about each unit, and a list of soldiers by unit, with their rank and service dates. An index is included in the book but not in the film. These records contain the reports for troops serving with the Union.
  • Kentucky. Adjutant-General’s Office. Report of the Adjutant General [1861–1865]. Bethesda, Maryland.: University Publications of America, 1990. (Family History Library fiche 6082379–80, 6082382–84.) This record contains reports and rosters of units from Kentucky, with the names of officers by unit. It also contains their residence and dates of commission.
  • Speed, Thomas. The Union Regiments of Kentucky. 1897. Reprint, Dayton, Ohio: Morningside House, [ca. 1984]. (Family History Library book 976.9 M2st; film 1321096 item 6.) This record includes a brief history of each unit and lists the names of all soldiers. The index lists only the names of the commissioned officers from Kentucky.
  • United States. Record and Pension Office. Compiled Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served in Organizations From the State of Kentucky. National Archives Microfilm Publications, M0397. Washington, DC: National Archives, 1962. (Family History Library films 1487066–90057.) These service records are arranged by company and regiment and then alphabetically by the name of the soldier. They include the soldier’s name, age, rank, service record, muster, enlistment, discharge and disability information, payment cards, and physical description.
  • The Civil War Archive-Union Regimental Index [Internet site]. N.p., 1998 [cited 25 October 1999]. Available at www.civilwararchive.com/unionky.htm. This site includes histories and background information on Kentucky regiments.

For the 1890 census of Union veterans of the Civil War, see the "Census" section.

Confederates

  • Kentucky. Division of Archives and Records Management. Index of Confederate Pension Applications. Commonwealth of Kentucky. Frankfort, Kentucky.: Archives Branch, Division of Archives and Records Management, Dept. of Library and Archives, 1981. (Family History Library book 976.9 M2k.) This index is arranged alphabetically and lists the applicant’s name and county of residence at the time the application was made, the date the application was received in the Confederate pension office, and the application number. The listings for the widow’s applications provide maiden names if stated on the application. The veteran husband’s name is listed in parentheses.
  • The Kentucky Historical Society produced a second index to Kentucky Confederate Pension Applications. Both the index and the pension applications are available at the Family History Library. (Family History Library films beginning 1670795.) The pensions are organized by pension number.
  • Kentucky. Adjutant General. Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky, Confederate Kentucky Volunteers, War 1861–1865. 191–?. Reprint, Utica, Kentucky.: McDowell Publishing, 1980. (Vol. 1 on Family History Library [1]; Vol. 2 book 976.9 M2rc].) The book contains brief histories of confederate units and includes a list of soldiers, with their rank and dates of service. It is indexed. An index to the infantry soldiers in volume 1 is:
  • Cook, Michael L. Index to "Report of the Adjutant General of the State of Kentucky." Utica, Kentucky.: McDowell Publishing, 1979. (Family History Library book 976.9 M2rcaindex.)
  • United States. Record and Pension Office. Compiled Service Records of Confederate Soldiers Who Served in Organizations from the State of Kentucky. National Archives Microfilm Publications, M0319. Washington, D.C.: National Archives, 1960. (Family History Library films 1447468–603.) The compiled service records of Kentucky soldiers are arranged according to a complicated organizational breakdown, ending with either the regiment or independent battalion or company. Under each unit the service records are arranged alphabetically by soldiers’ surnames.
  • "Kentucky in the Civil War-Confederate Files" in USGenWeb Project [Internet site], N.p., 7 September 1999 [cited 25 October 1999]. Available at www.rootsweb.com/~kymil/cw/cw-conf.html. This site contains rosters or histories of Confederate military units and includes links to pension records, veteran’s records, biographies of prominent leaders, and military organizations.

Unit Histories

An important inventory for finding Civil War military histories is:

  • A Guide to the Microfiche Edition of Civil War Unit Histories: Regimental Histories and Personal Narratives. Part 1, Confederate States of America and Border States. Bethesda, Maryland.: University Publications of America, 1992. (Family History Library book 973 M2cwu pt. 1.) Kentucky units are listed on pages 33 to 38. The library has the large microfiche collection described in this guide. Use the library catalog to find individual items. This may include correspondence, diaries, memoirs, and regimental histories published before 1920. The guide shows the unit name, counties where it was raised, author, title, publication information, number of pages, and source repository. This guide includes an author index and a major engagements index.

Confederate Regiments

Regiments 1st thru 2nd

  • 1st Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Helms') (Confederate)
    Organized during the late summer of 1861 and its companies were mustered into Confederate service in October.
    Because of its difficult service in Kentucky during September and October, 1862, it was reduced to a battalion and assigned to the 3rd Kentucky Cavalry.
    The field officers were Colonel Benjamin H. Helm; Lieutenant Colonels J.W. Griffith, H.C. Leavell, and Thomas G. Woodward; and Majors John W. Caldwell and N.R. Chambliss.
  • 1st Regiment, Kentucky Infantry (Confederate)
    Organized during the summer of 1861 for a one year term of enlistment. In August the 1st (Duncan's) Kentucky Battalion merged into the regiment. In April 1862, it was placed in D.R. Jones' Brigade, Army of Northern Virginia.
    When its term of service ended, it disbanded.
    The field officers were Colonel Thomas H. Taylor, Lieutenant Colonels Edward Crossland and William P. Johnston, and Major Benjamin Anderson.
  • 2nd Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Duke's) (Confederate)
    Organized during the summer of 1862 using Morgan's Kentucky Cavalry Squadron as its nucleus. The unit contained men from Kentucky, Texas, Mississippi, and Alabama.
    Many were captured in the conflict at Buffington Island on July 19 and the remaining part at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The regiment was not reorganized.
    Its field officers were Colonels Basil W. Duke and John H. Morgan, Lieutenant Colonels James W. Bowles and John B. Hutcheson, and Majors G.W. Morgan and T.B. Webber.
  • 2nd (Woodward's) Cavalry Regiment (Confederate)
    Organized in December, 1862, using Woodward's Kentucky Cavalry Battalion as its nucleus.
    Served in various locations, then in the defense of Savannah and the campaign of the Carolinas. On April 26, 1865, it surrendered.
    Its commanders were Colonel Thomas G. Woodward and Major Thomas W. Lewis.
  • 2nd Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Confederate)
    Organized in August, 1861, at Camp Boone, Tennessee, and became part of the Orphan Brigade or Louisville Legion. The men were from the counties of Hickman, Fayette, Bullitt, Jefferson, Graves, Franklin, Harrison, Scott, Owen, Bourbon, and Anderson.
    On April 26, 1865, it surrendered with the Army of Tennessee.
    The field officers were Colonels Roger W. Hanson, James M. Hawes, Robert A. Johnston, and James W. Moss; Lieutenant Colonels James W. Hewitt and Philip Lee; and Majors William P. Johnston and Harvey McDowell.

Regiments 3rd thru 4th

  • 3rd Battalion, Kentucky Mounted Rifles (Confederate)
    Also called 1st or 10th Battalion]
    Organized during the late summer of 1862.
    Surrendered at Bowling Green, Kentucky, in April, 1865.
    The field officers were Lieutenant Colonel E.F. Clay, and Majors P.M. Everett and J.B. Holladay.
  • 3rd Regiment, Kentucky State Guards (Misc)(Confederate)
    "Units of the Confederate States Army" by Joseph H. Crute, Jr. contains no history for this unit.
  • 3rd Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    Organized during the summer of 1862. In October the 1st Kentucky Cavalry Regiment merged into this command and at times was called the 1st (3rd) Kentucky Cavalry.
    Surrendered with the Army of Tennessee in April, 1865.
    The field commanders were Colonel J.R. Butler, Lieutenant Colonels Jack Allen and Jacob W. Griffith, and Major J.Q. Chenoweth.
  • 3rd Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Confederate)
    Organized during July 1861, at Camp Boone, Tennessee. Many of the men had previous service in the Kentucky State Guard. During the spring of 1864 the regiment was mounted.
    Surrender on May 4, 1865.
    The field officers were Colonels Gustavus A.C. Holt, Albert P. Thompson, and Lloyd Tilghman; Lieutenant Colonels Benjamin Anderson, T.T. Barnett, and Alfred Johnston; and Majors James H. Bowman, William P. Johnston, and Al. McGoodwin.
  • 4th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    During the spring of 1865 4th Cavalry Regiment was formed at Salyersville, Kentucky.
    In October, 1862. it disbanded.
    The field officers were Colonel Henry L. Giltner, Lieutenant Colonel Moses T. Pryor, and Major Nathan Parker.
  • 4th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Confederate)
    Organized at Bowling Green, Kentucky, in September, 1861.
    Few surrendered on April 26, 1865.
    The field officers were Colonels Joseph P. Nuckols, Jr. and Robert P. Trabue; Lieutenant Colonels John A. Adair, Andrew R. Hynes, and Thomas W. Thompson; and Majors Joseph H. Millett, Thomas B. Munroe, Jr., and John B. Rogers

Regiments 5th thru 7th

  • 5th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    Organized during the summer of 1862 with men recruited in the central section of Kentucky.
    Many were captured at Buffington Island on July 19 and the remaining part at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The regiment was not reorganized.
    Its commanders were Colonel D. Howard Smith, Lieutenant Colonels Churchill G. Campbell and Preston Thomson, and Major Thomas Y. Brent, Jr
  • 5th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Confederate)
    Assembled during the late summer of 1861, included Freeman's Kentucky Infantry Battalion. Its members were raised in the counties of Pendleton, Breathitt, Morgan, Magoffin, Bath, Owen, Grant, Jessamine, Henderson, Harrison, Shelby, and Franklin. Being a twelve-month unit, when it became time to reenlist some of its members refused and were transferred to the 9th Kentucky Regiment. Later men of the 5th did reenlist for the duration of the war. It became part of the Orphan Brigade or Louisville Legion.
    Surrendered on April 26, 1865.
    Its field officers were Colonels Hiram Hawkins, Andrew J. May, and John S. Williams; Lieutenant Colonels John W. Caldwell and George W. Conner' and Majors Richard Hawes and William Mynheir.
  • 6th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry(Confederate)
    Organized during the summer of 1862 with men from the central and eastern section of Kentucky.
    Most of its members were captured at Buffington Island on July 19 and the remaining part at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The regiment was not reorganized.
    Its commanders were Colonel J. Warren Grigsby, Lieutenant Colonel Thomas W. Napier, and Major William G. Bullitt.
  • 6th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry(Confederate)
    Organized at Cave City, Kentucky, in November, 1861, and included in Cofer's 1st Kentucky Infantry Battalion. Its members were raised in the counties of Nelson, Spencer, Hardin, Franklin, Barren, Green, Allen, Anderson, Bullitt, and Simpson. It became part of the Orphan Brigade or Louisville Legion. In the fall of 1864 the unit was mounted.
    Surrendered with the Army of Tennessee on April 26, 1865.
    The field officers were Colonels Martin H. Cofer and Joseph H. Lewis, Lieutenant Colonel William L. Clarke, and Majors Thomas H. Hays and George W. Maxson.
  • 7th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry(Confederate)
    Organized in September, 1862, using Gano's Texas Cavalry Battalion as its nucleus.
    Most of its men were captured at Buffington Island on July 19, and the rest at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The regiment was not reorganized.
  • 7th Cavalry Regiment (Confederate)
    Organized in September, 1862, using Gano's Texas Cavalry Battalion as its nucleus.
    Most of its men were captured at Buffington Island on July 19, and the rest at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The regiment was not reorganized.
    Colonel Richard M. Gano, Lieutenant Colonel J.M. Huffman, and Major Theophilus Steele were in command.
  • 7th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Confederate)
    Assembled in September, 1861, at Camp Burnett, near Clinton, Kentucky, with men from the western section of the state. During the spring of 1864.
    Surrendered on May 4, 1865.
    The field officers were Colonels Edward Crossland and Charles Wickliffe, Lieutenant Colonels William D. Lannom and L.J. Sherrill, and Majors H.S.Hale and W.J.N. Welborn.

Regiments 8th thru 14th

  • 8th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    Formed during the late summer of 1862 and mustered into Confederate service in September.
    Most of the men were captured at Buffington Island on July 19 and a remnant at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The 8th was not reorganized.
    Its commanders were Colonel R.S. Cluke, Lieutenant Colonel Cicero Coleman, and Major Robert S. Bullock
  • 8th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry(Confederate)
    Organized in September, 1861, at Camp Boone, Tennessee. The unit was captured at Fort Donelson, and of the 312 engaged, 99 were killed or wounded. After being exchanged it was attached to Tilghman's and Buford's Brigade, Department of Mississippi and East Louisiana. During the spring of 1864 the regiment was mounted and assigned to General Lyon's Brigade.
    Later it skirmished in Alabama and surrendered in May, 1865.
    The field officers were Colonels Henry C. Burnett and Hylan B. Lyon, Lieutenant Colonel A.R. Shacklett, and Majors Jabez Bingham and R.W. Henry.
  • 9th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    9th Cavalry Regiment [also called 4th Mounted Rifles] was organized in December, 1862, by consolidating Breckinridge's and Stoner's Kentucky Cavalry Battalions.
    A detachment surrendered with the Army of Tennessee, but the main part of the unit escorted President Davis southward and surrendered in May, 1865.
    Colonel William C.P. Breckinridge, Lieutenant Colonel Robert G. Stoner, and Majors John P. Austin and William E. Jones were in command.
  • 9th Regiment, Kentucky Mounted Infantry (Confederate)
    [Also called 5th (Hunt's) Regiment] was organized at Russellville, Kentucky, during the fall of 1861. The men were recruited in the counties of Logan, Jefferson, Nelson, Harrison, Ohio, and Scott. During the fall of 1864 it was mounted.
    Only a remnant surredered with the Army of Tennessee.
    The field officers were Colonels John W. Caldwell and Thomas H. Hunt; Lieutenant Colonels Alexander Casseday, Robert A. Johnston, and J.C. Wickliffe; and Major Ben Desha.
  • 10th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Diamond's) (Confederate)
    Formed during the fall of 1863 using May's Kentucky Mounted Battalion as its nucleus. It contained men from Kentucky and Virginia.
    In the spring of 1865 it disbanded.
    The field officers were Colonels George R. Diamond, Andrew J. May, and Edwin Trimble, and Major William R. Lee.
  • 10th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Johnson's) (Confederate)
    Organized behind Federal lines during the spring and summer of 1863. Many of its members were recruited in Oldham and Crittenden counties.
    A detachment surrendered at Paducah, Kentucky, in May, 1865.
    Colonel Adam R. Johnson, Lieutenant Colonel R.M. Martin, and Major Washington G. Owen were in command
  • 11th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    Organized in Madison County, Kentucky, with 410 officers and men. Many of its members were raised in Webster, Madison, and Hopkins counties.
    Most of the men were captured at Buffington Island on July 19 and some at New Lisbon on July 26, 1863. The unit was not reorganized.
    Colonels David W. Chenault and Joseph T. Tucker, and Lieutenant Colonel James B. McCreary were its commanders.
  • 12th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    [Also called 1st Kentucky and Tennessee Regiment] organized and mustered into Confederate service at Verona, Mississippi, in September, 1863.
    During March, 1865, merged into the 8th Kentucky Infantry (Mounted) Regiment.
    Commanded by Colonel W.W. Faulkner, Lieutenant Colonel W.D. Lannom, and Majors John M. Malone and Thomas S. Tate, Jr.
  • 13th Regiment, Kentucky Cavalry (Confederate)
    [Also called 10th and 11th Regiment Mounted Infantry] assembled at Abingdon, Virginia.
    Served in various locations, and on April 27, 1865, surrendered at Louisa, Kentucky.
    The field officers were Colonel Benjamin E. Caudill, Lieutenant Colonel D.J. Caudill, and Major John T. Chenoweth.

Regiments A thru Z

  • Cobb's Company, Kentucky Light Artillery (Confederate)
    Lyon's-Cobb's Battery [often called the Orphan Battery] organized during the summer of 1861 as Lyon's Battery. Not reaching full strength, it merged with Captain Cobb's company which was being formed.
    During the winter of 1864-1865 it disbanded.
    Captains Robert Cobb and H.L. Lyon were in command
  • Green's Battery, Kentucky Light Artillery (Confederate)
    Organized during the fall of 1861. Many of its members were recruited in Cumberland County. It became part of the garrison at Fort Donelson and was captured in February, 1862. After being exchanged it was assigned to the Department of Mississippi and East Louisiana. Later the company was reorganized, ordered to Alabama, and served in the defense of Mobile. It was included in the surrender on May 4, 1865. Its captains were Henry F. Green and W.H. Hedden

References

  1. Wikipedia.com, Kentucky in the American Civil War, (accessed 9 March 2011)