Johnson’s Island Confederate Prison

JOHNSON'S BY jOYCE by Joyce at find a grave

Situated in Ottawa County on little Johnson’s Island, Sandusky Bay, Marblehead, Ohio, this cemetery occupies land donated to the United States in 1931 by the United Daughters of the Confederacy. In 1862 through 1865, the 1.2 acre tract was used as a prison burial ground for Confederate commissioned officers. The prison was primarily for the confinement of Confederate officers although a few enlisted men were also interred in the cemetery. There are 153 known and 52 unknown graves, but the cemetery register shows 246 names, of which 20 were citizens and 22 were later removed. Other records state that there are 206 Confederates buried in the cemetery. A statue was erected by the United Daughters of the Confederacy in 1910.

The cemetery is located in Danbury Township, Ottawa County, Ohio.

Source: Find A Grave. com

Johnson's by Aphillcsaby Aphillcsa on find a grave (a.k.a. A P. Hill CSA General)

Confederate Prisoners from the Battles of Franklin & Nashville

Battle of Franklin & Nashville

Confederate Prisoners

at Johnson’s Island, Ohio

The Battle of Franklin and the final blow at Nashville two weeks later to Hood’s Army in Tennessee are well documented here on this site and elsewhere, including two masterful books by Eric Jacobson. Eric documents how the devastation reached far into the ranks of Hood’s officer corps; including 14 Generals and 55 regimental commanders. One-Hundred and Twenty-Seven captured officers were transported and housed on Johnson’s Island. In addition to those 127 on this list, two of the CSA Generals captured at Franklin and were sent here; Gen’s Thomas Benton Smith and Edward “Alleghany” Johnson.

The captured represent Seventy-One CSA units from nine states. The 2nd Missouri Infantry’s six officers is the most from any one unit. The 2nd, from Cockrell’s Brigade, ran into the 65th Indiana and the 6th Ohio Artillery at a well constructed Abatis near the center of the battle at Franklin. Roughly two-thirds of Cockrell’s Missouri Brigade became casualties that day.

Opened in April 1862 Johnson’s Island Prisoner of War Depot held within its walls over 10,000 (Wikipedia states 15,000) Confederate prisoners during the war. Almost all of them were officers. It was closed at the end of the war in 1865.

The prison contained 13 block houses, 12 of them housing, one a hospital. The houses were two stories high and approximately 130 by 24 feet. There were more than 40 buildings outside the stockade used by the 128th Ohio Volunteer Infantry to guard the prison. Two major fortifications, Forts Johnson and Hill, protecting Johnson’s Island were constructed over the winter of 1864.

The 128th Ohio Volunteer Infantry was led by William S. Pierson, a former mayor of Sandusky, Ohio. Because of his cruelty to prisoners and inability to handle problems he was replaced in January 1864 by Brigadier General Harry D. Terry.  A few months later, in May 1864, Colonel Charles W. Hill took command at Johnson’s Island, remaining until the end of the war.

Prisoners could receive packages and mail. The mail and parcels were inspected and often damaged before the prisoner received them. The prisoners on Johnson’s Island, along with most of the soldiers that fought in the Civil War endured harsh winters, food and fuel shortages, disease, along with the mental anguish of uncertainty about their families and their own futures. Close to 300 prisoners died on Johnson’s Island during the war.

In 1990, Johnson’s Island was designated as a National Historic Landmark. The Confederate Cemetery, located on Johnson’s Island is currently the only publicly available part of the prison.

Source: http://

Please visit their website. Their work continues and to say the least it is impressive. Here is some of the background story.

In 2013, the Sandusky Library Archives Research Center acquired a very important document about the PoWs at the Johnson’s Island Civil War Military Prison.  The document lists, by Block and Company (which may refer to their housing arrangements) the prisoners incarcerated there in the Fall of 1864.  The Friends and Descendants of Johnson’s Island, with the assistance of Heidelberg University students, will be incorporating the information from these lists into their overall PoW database.  Below, we will be sharing much of what we know about each prisoner listed on this document.  We will be updating this page as we progress, first arranging the listings by the blocks represented.  Place your mouse over the appropriate block and once we have the listing complete, a link to that database will appear.  Once all records are entered, we will also have an alphabetic arrangement of the files.  The database is google drive generated and you can search the database by using Ctrl-F or by selecting the header of each column and choosing the information you desire. Send comments to regarding anything related to the web site.  The site is maintained by Dr. David Bush, Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Center for Historic and Military Archaeology of Heidelberg University.

Contents in order; Last Name, First Name and Middle or Initial, Rank, Regiment, Home Town, Date Captured, Place                  Captured,  Date in, Date out, Block#

Block 1




Block 2

Murphey          Virgil   S.         Col.     17th AL.         Infantry                       Montgomery AL         11/30/1864            Franklin, TN    12/6/1864        6/27/1865        2(3)



Block 3


Enyart             Logan              Captain            1st MO            Cavalry B   Pattensburg, MO 11/30/1864            Franklin, TN         6/16/1865         3(6)

Johnson           Jerry    Martin 2nd Lieut.       10 TX  Infantry C     Loudon City, Anton, TX         11/30/1864            Franklin, TN    6/16/1865       3(6)

Pennington      William            F.         Lt. Col.            4th LA Infantry     Lake Providence, LA      12/17/1864            near Franklin, TN        7/28/1865         3(6)



Block 4

Burns          Alexander           F.         Captain            1st & 3rd MO Infantry & Cavalry     H & N Graham, MO      11/30/1864      Franklin, TN    12/5/1864        5/02/1865        4(8)

Garret(t)   George   Washington B.  Major   23rd MS          Infantry Jonesborough MS    12/15/1864      near Nashville, TN              7/25/1865        4(7)

McGavehy; McGevney           Michael                       Colonel            154th TN         Infantry                Memphis, TN  12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              5/22/1865        4(7)

Picelot          Arthur               Major   30th LA          Infantry                       New Orleans, LA        12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              7/25/65         1865     4(7)

Thompson       George  W.       1st Lieut.         52nd TN. or 2nd TN   Infantry           G         Calladonin TN            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/18/1865     4(7)

Truchart           David              Major   Matthatts(?) Div C      Artillery                       Richmond VA 12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              7/25/1865       4(7)

Waldrop          William            C.        1st Lieut.         41st MS           Infantry           F          New Albany MS            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/17/1865   4(7)

Block 5


Allen   William            E.         2nd Lieutenant & Adjutant    16th LA          Infantry           I           Sparta, LA            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN  11/12/1863      6/16/1865        5(11)

Anderson        Charles            H.        2nd Lieutenant            1st GA Confederate   Infantry           F            Powders Spring GA    12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        5(11)

Anderson        James   A.        2nd Lieutenant         4th AR        Infantry  E     Goodness AR     12/16/1865     Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        5(11)

Anthony          Jesse                3rd Lieutenant 30th GA          Infantry           E          Jonesburo, GA            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        5(11)

Archer        Benjamin            Lafayette         Captain            19th AL          Infantry           D         Gadsden, Leu Islands, AL          12/161864       Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        5(11)

Aydbott           Arther            F.         Captain            48th TN           Infantry           H         Columbia, TN            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        5(11)

Bailey         William     O.      1st Lieutenant 20th AL          Infantry           K   Tusculoosa, AL     12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              1/16/1865        5(11)

Brewer            George E.         1st Lieutenant 25th GA          Infantry I        Walthomville, GA       12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              1/16/1865        5(11)

Evans     Robert          L.         Captain            53rd TN          Infantry           I           Lynnville TN   11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        5(11)

Fulton     Joseph          E.         Captain            25th GA          Infantry           A         Savannah GA  12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        5(11)

Howard           Daniel,David  Capt.   42nd TN.         Infantry           I           Memphis TN   11/30/1865            Franklin Co. TN                      06/16/1865      5(11)

Maybee           Milton J.          Capt.   1st GA Infantry           F          Powder Springs GA    12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        5(11)

Stephens          Joseph H.        2nd Lieut.       18th AL          Infantry           H         Troy, AL         12/07/1864            Franklin, TN                6/15/1865        5(11)

Turner          Benjamin            M.      Capt.   4th GA S.S.                C         Barnesville, GA          12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        5(11)

William            A.        1st Lieut.         18th AL          Infantry           F          Garland AL     12/17/1864      near Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        5(11)

Wright             Henry, Harry   C.        Capt. & A.Q.M.          20th TN           Cavalry                        Fayetteville, TN       12/17/1864      near Franklin, TN                    6/17/1865        5(11)

Yeatman          William            E.         Capt.   2 TN    Infantry           C         Nashville TN   12/17/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        5(11)


Block 6  



Block 7  




Block 8


Ger           Tho.            W.       1st Lieutenant 1st, 3rd MS      Cavalry            B   Pattensburg, MS               11/30/1864      Franklin Co., TN                     6/11/1865        8(17)

Glenn  Adolphus      B.        1st Lieutenant 32nd MS, 22nd MS    Infantry           I           Greenville, MS            11/30/1864      Franklin Co., TN                     6/11/1865        8(17)

Gordon       George    Washington    Brig. Gen.     Vaughn’s Brigade            =    Waverly, TN             11/30/1864      Franklin, TN           12/07/1864      12/16/1864      8,8(17)

Graham           Samuel    J.       2nd Lieutenant            22nd MS         Infantry           H         Greenville, MS            11/30/1864      Franklin Co, TN                      6/16/1865        8(17)

Porter       Thomas       M.J.     2nd Lieut.       17th AL          Infantry           B.        Georgiana, AL            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        8(17)


Block 9

Ballard             Thomas            W.       1st Lieutenant 29th GA          Infantry           I           Thomasville GA            12/16/1864      near Nashville, TN                  1/16/1865        9(19)

Johnson           Robert T.         Capt.   29th GA          Infantry           L          Jefferson GA  12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              06/16/1865      9(19)

Knight Levi   J.        2nd Lieut.       29th GA          Infantry           G         Milltown GA  12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              06/16/1865      9(19)

Powell    James           T.L.     2nd Lieut.       25th GA          Infantry           C.        Morgan GA     12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        9(19)


Block 10

Bowen             Caleb   P.         Captain            30th GA          Infantry           C Cambleton GA      12/16/1864            near Nashville, TN                  1/16/1865        10(21)

Cawthorn        Benjamin         J, F      2nd Lieutenant            2nd Battalion GA       Sharp Shooters            B            Thomaston GA           12/16/1864      Nashville, TN  6/16/1865      10(21)

Cowlong         Doul    C.        Captain            19th AR          Infantry G     Columbus, AR 12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        10(20)

Graham           Thomas            H.        2nd Lieutenant            14th MS          Infantry           B         Enterprise, MS      12/16/1864      near Nashville, TN                  6/16/1865        10(20)

Henry  Hugh    William         Captain            22nd AL         Infantry           K   Montgomery, AL 12/15/1864            Nashville, TN  12/20/1864      6/20/1865        10(20)

Wier       Dabney        S.         2nd Lieut.       14th MS          Infantry           B                     12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        10(20)

Wiggins           Thomas            P.         Capt.   46th MS          Infantry           F     Alamatsha, MS   12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        10(20)


Block 11


Allen        John            K.        Major   30th MS          Infantry                       McNutt MS     11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/07/1865        11(23)

Aldridge          William            C.        Captain            1st & 3rd MO Cavalry                        California MO             11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(24);11(23)

Anderson        Harry;Henry    Y.        2nd Lieutenant            1st & 3rd MO Cavalry                        St. Louis MO      11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(24);11(23)

Avery  Alfred B.        1st Lieutenant 45th AL          Infantry           H         Burzelia GA    11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(23)

Barnes          William              1st Lieutenant 49th TN           Infantry           C   Springfield TN      11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                5/06/1865        11(24)

Bean    John     B.        Captain            16th AL          Infantry           H         Mt Hope AL   11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                5/06/1865        11(23)

Bell      West    A.        2nd Lieutenant            3rd MS            Infantry           A         Harrisville MS 11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                5/06/1865        11(23)

Brown      Henry        M.        1st Lieutenant 42nd TN          Infantry   E   Bluff Springs TN         11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(23)

Burdim            William            M.        2nd Lieutenant            3rd MS            Infantry           B         Richmond MS      11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                5/06/1865        11(23)

Burns   Alexander       F.         Captain            1st & 3rd MO Infantry & Cavalry     H & N Graham MO            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN    12/5/1864        5/02/1865        4(8);11(23)

Cargill    Thomas        H.        Captain            42nd TN          Infantry           C   Collierville, TN      11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(23)

Collier Thomas            E.         1st Lieutenant 45th AL          I           F          Decatur, GA   11/20/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(23)

Cooper            Charles            R.        2nd Lieutenant            49th TN           Infantry           A         Clarksville TN       11/20/1864      Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(24)

Cornelius         Cader  R.        Captain            4th LA Infantry           G         Clinton LA      12/17/1864      near Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(24)

Cowan George           E.         Captain            18th AL          Infantry           A         Stevenson, Al  11/20/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(23)

Crittenden       Robert F.         Colonel            33rd AL          Infantry           Haw Ridge AL           11/20/1864            Franklin, TN                6/27/1865        11(23)

Crosby      William       H.        2nd Lieutenant            5th Confederate          Infantry           G         Memphis, TN       11/20/1864      Franklin, TN                5/13/1865        11(23)

Devall         David                  Captain            4th LA Infantry           B         Homitage, LA 12/17/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(24)

Enyart        Logan                   Captain            1st MO            Cavalry            B   Pattensburg, MO   11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        3(6);11(23)

Inglis          John     Livingston       Capt.   3rd FL Infantry           D         Madison FL    12/16/1864      Nashville, TN       12/20/1864      6/16/1865        11(24)

King    Richard           C.        1st Lieut.         1st Batt GA SS                       D   Waresboro GA      12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              06/16/1865      11(24)

Kinow, Kinnow         Charles            E.         Capt.   14th LA          Infantry           J           Tangipaha, LA            12/17/1864      Near Franklin TN                    06/16/1865      11(24)

Leonardey       Philip               2nd Lieut.       3rd FL Infantry           B         Savannah GA  12/15/1864      near Nashville, TN              06/16/1865      11(24)

McCarthy        Charles            E.         1st Lieut.         30th LA.         Infantry Volunteers    A.        New Orleans LA       12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/15/1865        11(24)

Parson    John    D.     Capt.   2th Mo.           Infantry           C.        Perrysville MO            11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Patterson         Thomas                        Capt.   25th Texas       Infantry           E.   Madisonville TX  11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Perry               Edward           C.        1st Lieut.         17th Texas       Cavalry            K.        Jonesville, TX            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Pullen             Edward           J.          Major   4th LA Infantry                       Clinton LA      12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              7/25/1865        11(24)

Robinson         James   Henry  1st Lieut.         15th TN           Infantry           K   Yorksville, TN     11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Schlatter          Charles            H.        2nd Lieut.       1 Bat GA S.S.                         Wausburo GA 12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        11(24)

Sharp         John      T.      1st Lieut.         5th MS            Infantry           F          Noxapater, MS            11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Singleterry       Thomas            H.        2nd Lieut.       7th TX Infantry           E          Alto TX           11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Simms;Simmons          James   E.         Capt.   33rd MS          Infantry           A         High Hill MS  11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Smith      William        M.        2nd Lieut.       1st & 3rd MO Infantry           E          Savanah MO   11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                5/13/1865        11(23)

Stamper           Martin W.       2nd Lieut.       8th MS            Infantry           D         Union MS       11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Stoker       Richard      J.          2nd Lieut.       30 MS Infantry           C         Lodi MS          11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Talley     Charles        E.         Capt.   7th TX             D         Marshall TX    11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Taylor  William            A.        Major   24th TX           Cavalry                        Waco TX         11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/1/1865          11(23)

Thompson       John     B.        1st Lieut.         42nd TN          Infantry           C     Morning Sun TN 11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                5/12/1865        11(23)

Thompson;Thomason         William            W.       Captain            24th MO                     A         McLeads, MS            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)

Watts      Samuel        B.        Capt.   10th MS          Infantry           H         Brandon MS   11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        11(24)

Weathers         Benjamin         F.         1st Lieut.         17th AL          Infantry           E          Roanole, AL            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        11(23)




Block 12

Carbry       James       T.         1st Lieutenant 3rd MO           Infantry           G                     11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        12(26)

Carney             LeGrand          V.        2nd Lieutenant            11th TN Cavalry                                11/14/1864            near Murfreesboro, TN                       6/16/1865        12(26)

Coker     Darling                    2nd Lieutenant            8th MS            Infantry           H                     11/20/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        12(26)

Cooper      Charles       R.        2nd Lieutenant            49th TN           Infantry           A         Clarksville, TN            11/20/1864      Franklin, TN                6/16/1865   11(24) & 12(26)

Dale     John     J.          1st Lieutenant 3rd MS            Infantry           H                     11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                        2/24/1865        12(26)

Davis   Christian         S.         1st Lieutenant 2nd MS; Valentine’s   Regiment         B                     11/28/1864            near Spring Hill, TN                6/16/1865        12(26)

Day     James   B.        1st Lieutenant General Sharp’s           Staff                Louisville        11/30/1864            Franklin, TN    12/5/1864        6/16/1865        12(26)

Dickson           Mumford         H.        Captain            3rd Confederate          Infantry           E                      11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        12(26)

Dodd         William          W.       2nd Lieutenant            29th TN           Infantry H                 11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        12(26)

Duncan            James   L.         1st Lieutenant 2nd MO          Infantry           B         Louisville MO 11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        12(26)

Dunklin           James   H.        Lieutenant Colonel     33rd AL          Infantry           E                      11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/27/1865        12(26)

McAdve; McAdoo     Hugh   M         Capt.   4th TN Infantry           B.        Waverly TN    12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        12(25)

McCleskey      Louis   A.        2nd Lieut.       5th AR            Infantry           E          Chalk Bluff AR            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        12(25)

McDonald       Elbert  M.        2nd Lieut.       20th AL          Infantry           C         Elyton AL       12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/16/1865        12(25)

McMillan         Angus              Capt    6th FL             K         Orange Hill, FL           12/16/1864      Nashville, TN       12/22/1864      6/17/1865        12(25)

Middlebrooks       Thos [Thomas] J.          2nd Lieut.       37th GA          Infantry           C         Cornicopia, GA            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              5/19/1865        12(25)

Mitchell           William            D         Colonel            29th GA          Infantry                       Thomasville GA            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              7/23/1865        12(25)

Sherrod           Frederic           O.        Capt.   16th AL          Infantry           B         Florence AL    11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        12(26)

Smith               Benjamin         S. G.    1st Lieut. and Engineer           6th FL Infantry           C         Quincy FL            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN  12/20/1864      6/17/1865        12(25)

Stephens          William            Anderson        Lieut.   46th AL 40th AL[SLL]          Infantry           K            Louina, AL     12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              3/15/1865        12(25)

Stuart/Stewart    Thaddius/Thomas     W.       1st Lieut.         2nd MO          Infantry           I           Sturgeon, MO      11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                3/18/1865        12(26)

Usher   John                 1st Lieut.         22nd MO        Infantry           G         Black Hawk MS         11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        12(26)

Voohies           William            M.        Col.     48 TN Cav      Cavalry                        Columbia TN  12/17/1864            New Franklin, TN                   7/25/1865        12(25)

Walker            Francis            M.        1st Lieut, Capt            16th AL                      D         Evergreen AL            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        12(26)

Wells   John     S.         Capt.   2nd MO          Infantry           B         Louisville MO 11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                        6/17/1865        12(26)

Wilkerson        Harris              Capt.   3rd;1st MO     Infantry           F          Columbia MO 11/30/1864            Franklin , TN               6/17/1865        12(26)

Wright      Thomas      P.         2nd Lieut.       7th AR            Infantry           H                     11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        12(26)

Yaretzky         Julius               2nd Lieut.       33rd AL.         Infantry           A         Ella AL           11/30/1864            Franklin, Tennessee                 5/13/1865        12(26)

Block 13

Kennedy         James   M.        2nd Lieut.       8th MS            Infantry           G         Tristwood MS 12/30/1864            Franklin, TN                06/16/1865      13(29)

King    Richard          C.        1st Lieut.         1st Batt GA SS                       D     Waresboro GA    12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              06/16/1865      11(24);13(27)

Kointy/Koonte            Doctor F.         Capt.   2nd MO&6th MO   Infantry K   New Franklin MO  12/30/1864            Franklin, TN                06/16/1865      13(29)

McBeth           John     C.        1st Lieut.         5th MS            Infantry           K         High Hill MS  9/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        13(29)

McDavid         Robert J           1st Lieut.         7th TX Infantry           I.          Bellvue TX      9/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/16/1865        13(29)

McKinnon       John     L.         2nd Lieut.       1st FL  Infantry           D         Uchllanna, FL 12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        13(29)

McKinnon       Neil     J           1st Lieut.         1st FL  Infantry           D         Knoxhill, FL   12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        13(29)

Melton      Daniel        William            1st Lieut.         7th AR            Infantry B   Grand Glaize, AR            11/30/1864      Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        13(29)

Miles          William                 2nd Lieut.       12th LA          Infantry       Winryfield, LA  12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        13(27)

Sanders           William            H.        2nd Lieut.       12th LA          Infantry           M         Woodville, LA            12/16/1864      Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        13(27)

Schlatter          Charles            L.         2nd Lieut.       1 Bat GA S.S.                         Wausburo GA 12/16/1864            Nashville, TN              6/17/1865        11(24);13(27)

Wells        John            S.         Capt.   2nd MO          Infantry           B         Louisville, MO            11/30/1864            Franklin, TN                6/17/1865        12(26);13(27)

One Man’s Loss is Another Man’s Gain

Subtitled; Nothing is sacred, even a man’s underwear.

Sixteen year old Adam Furniss volunteered, along with 974 other Ohioan’s, and joined together to make up the 103rd O.V.I. The regiment was organized in Cleveland, Ohio in Aug. 1862. The unit served the year in Kentucky, then in 1863 moved to Tennessee and served there with the Army of the Cumberland. In May of 1864 they joined in the movement against Atlanta under Sherman’s command. The regiment lost heavily during this campaign. After Atlanta had fallen the unit’s effective force numbered 195 men. One of the missing was Adam Furniss who had been captured on Aug. 28, 1864 at Atlanta.

Private Furniss was soon exchanged and was returned to his unit in time to participate against Hood’s Army during his Tennessee Campaign in November. The badly depleted unit was serving as General Schofield’s headquarters guard. As the 103rd moved into Spring Hill it was briefly engaged against the enemy. The Union Army was moving north with urgency, trying to reach Nashville to join with the army there. The army’s train had halted at Spring Hill and rather than attempt to run it north through the confederate cavalry (Nathen Forrest’s) along the tracks it was decided to set it afire. The attempt was not a total success and some of it eventually fell into enemy hands. However, Adam Furniss was at the depot when the trains were fired. What is the saying; one man’s loss is another’s gain? Personal baggage from two newly arrived regiments, the 183rd Ohio and the 44th Missouri, were aboard the trains. Adam Furniss later recalled picking through some of the officers effects searching for undergarments because he was in need of some. Furniss said he filled a substantial satchel with underwear and was soon on his way. (1)

After Hood had been routed at Franklin and Nashville the tiny 103rd was sent first by ship to Cincinnati, then by rail to Washington, D.C., and then again by ship to Wilmington, North Carolina to join Sherman’s Carolina Campaign. Records suggest that 185 men mustered out at Cleveland, Ohio on June 22, 1865.

IMG_0354 (640x480) (2)

Adam Furniss was born 1846 and with his father William and Brother William (1839-1889) resided in North Royalton, Cuyahoga County, Ohio at the time of the Civil War. Corporal William Furniss also served in the war with the 7th O.V.I., Co. E, in fact he and his brother served near one another in the Tennessee Campaigns of ’63. William was transferred to the Invalid Corp in Jan. ’64. Adam and his brother both married “Granger” girls in North Royalton. Adam married Mary A. Granger (b. 12/11/1847 in North Royalton) in July of 1874. Their children were: William Arron b. May 16, 1875, d.1958, James Bird b. Nov. 13, 1879, d. 1918, Jessie Eliza b. July 12, 1877. William married Martha Granger (b.1842) in 1865 and they had three daughters; Josephine, Hortence, and Maud. Adam died in North Royalton in 1902. His brother had died earlier in Pennsylvania in 1889.

  1. Source Baptism of Fire by Eric Jacobson and Richard Rupp



A Hero, as Defined by Lt. Col. Mervin Clark

Heroes? We all can name some that we’ve had. When I was young I played baseball, therefore men like Yogi Berra got tagged. Seems to me some heroes are made, some are born, some are just “there,” ready, at a certain moment in time.

As an amateur historian and blog-writer I make good use of dictionaries. If I am going to write about a hero I better make sure I know what one is, other than a definition from my youth. I looked; and now I am really confused. If a hero is a person who is admired for great or brave acts then there is no doubt in my mind that most of the over 3,000,000 men and boys who fought in our nation’s Civil War were heroes, regardless their cause.

So, how do I define and write about Captain Mervin Clark? I looked deeper in the dictionary to Medal of Honor recipients, who among other things showed resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance. Mervin Clark went unrewarded for his actions, at least not awarded a decoration so enduring.

In my view Clark was born a hero, just as I think WWII General Douglas MacArthur was. MacArthur’s legacy was born in Tennessee. Clark’s legacy was born aboard the Mayflower.

Now that I have your attention; here is the story. First, MacArthur’s was born at Missionary Ridge where his father Arthur was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions, and as a daring nineteen year old, when he was shot early in the Battle of Franklin. As a member of the 24th Wisconsin he was part of Opdyke’s units that came forward and helped push back the confederate troops that broke the main line at Columbia Pike. He survived his wounds to go on and experience more wars and a life full of service.

Mervin Clark was born November 5, 1843 in Cleveland, Ohio. According to family historians a great-grandfather, a few times over, was a pilot and mate on the “Mayflower” that sailed in 1620. He made several crossing of the Atlantic and was held captive in Havana and Madrid in 1611 and 1616. That man was named John Clark and his son. Thomas Clark, born in Middlesex, England, arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts in July of 1623 aboard the “Ann.” He was a master of many trades; carpenter, yeoman and merchant. He was taxed in 1632 and in 1633 he took the oath of a Freeman. In 1643 was listed as one able to bear arms.

Needless to say, if true, Mervin Clark was born of stock that laid the first blocks that built our country, so to preserve it was born in.

At the age of 17 Mervin enlisted in the 7th Ohio Infantry in June, 1861, just weeks after the firing on Fort Sumter. After a three-month enlistment spent, for the most part, in training at Camp Dennison near Cincinnati he reenlisted for three years. The 7th had an honorable record of service at such places as Cedar Mountain, Antietam, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Lookout Mountain, and Mission Ridge. It was ordered home to be mustered out, which was done on July 8, 1864, at Cleveland. During its term of service 1,800 men had served with the regiment, and now only 240 able-bodied men remained to bring home their colors. After his training and at the very beginning of his three years’ service Mervin was promoted to 1st Sgt. He was discharged as Captain!

Mervin Clark decided that he was not through serving his country and its cause. Shortly after returning home he volunteered again, as a private in the infantry. However, his previous service did not go unnoticed. The Governor of Ohio appointed him second in command of a new regiment being formed at Camp Dennison, the 183rd O.V.I. Lt. Col. Clark would now lead a new regiment of green, untested recruits, hastily assembled near Cincinnati, into battle in Middle Tennessee about six weeks later.

During the Battle of Franklin the 183rd was positioned to the west of the main line’s center, in reserve. However, one company was moved forward to fill a gap in the works. When the Confederate Army rushed forward to meet their enemy on the afternoon of November 30, 1864 that one company, in fear and confusion, turned and ran. As the enemy began to climb through the hole left Mervin Clark ordered his men on the reserve line forward. As they rushed ahead the color bearer fell to the ground, shot in the arm and leg. Clark gathered the colors from the ground and stood up, flag in one hand, and called out to his men to retake the works. As his men responded to his call a single bullet ripped through his head and killed him instantly. Inspired by Clark’s leadership the 183rd continue to rally and helped withstand the attack and turned the enemy back.

As the fighting subsided Lt. Col. Clark was wrapped in a blanket and buried on the battlefield. Eric Jacobson, in Baptism of Fire, writes that his grave was carefully marked in a manner that his body was able to be exhumed by family in the spring of 1866 and taken home. He was buried at Woodland Cemetery, Cleveland, Ohio.

Clark Grave Woodland Cemetery Grave Stone

Most of the Union Army troops killed at Franklin were removed from the battlefield and reinterred at Stones River National Cemetery nearby. To this day records at Stones River indicate that Mervin Clark is buried there. Recently, through no real intended action on my part, I was able to connect persons at Stones River and Woodland together to make correct the National Cemetery records. It is possible that he was taken to, even buried at, Stones River and gathered by family there.

Near the end of the war numerous forts were built around Louisville, Kentucky to protect it from invasion. In recognition of Mervin Clark’s valor on the battlefield one of them was named for him. It was located at (now) 36th and Magnolia Streets.

As a country we have taken to recognize that in 1620 a group of people landed on our shores with a cause and purpose. Our country grew from that landed place. From those causes men like MacArthur and Clark, (and I do acknowledge millions more) decided that preserving what was built was a worthy thing that demanded resolute fearlessness, fortitude, and endurance.






What Were You Doing at Fifteen?

Where were you and what were you doing at age fifteen? Personally? Let’s see; I was in the 9th grade, Rock & Roll was in its infancy, even in its place of birth, Cleveland Ohio. Baseball was my game and my music tastes, which would soon change, was Glenn Miller music. Parental influences were pushing against the teen in me. They weighed heavy and kept me safe despite myself.

William Wesley Gist, born in 1849, volunteered for service with the Union Army in 1864. Fifteen. What were you doing at fifteen?

William was born on February 28th in Starr, Hocking County, Ohio. Bears, and other like wildlife, probably outnumbered humans in this county southeast of Columbus, Ohio. In 1864 his older brothers Nathan and Cornelius were serving in the army and it can be assumed William wanted to join them; be part of the excitement. In March of that year he lied. Said he was eighteen and joined the 26th Ohio Volunteer Regiment. He was assigned to Company D and served until the regiment mustered out in August, 1865.

What were you doing at fifteen?

Young William was quickly introduced to battle, serving with Sherman’s Army from May to September during the Atlanta Campaign. Brother Cornelius was in Louisiana with the 114th O.V.I., but I wonder if William was, at the time, aware that brother Nathan was also in Georgia and Atlanta with the 31st O.V.I.? Both regiments participated in numerous major battles before Hood’s Confederate Army left Atlanta behind and Sherman began his march east.

The 26th had been formed during the early summer months of 1861. During the summer of 1864, while in Georgia, the three-year enlistments of the original volunteers ended. They were mustered out and headed back to their Ohio homes. What remained after Atlanta, about 120 men, (have also read about 200) was assigned to Lane’s Brigade, Wagner’s 4th Corps Division. The Corps was part of an army charged with defending Nashville from Hood’s Army. Hood, indeed, had plans.

Soon, this now small regiment would be tested again at Franklin, Tennessee.

During the preparations that preceded the Battle of Franklin, General Wagner made a huge error and with it put two divisions in harm’s way, isolated in open fields against Hood’s 20,000 man army. When the Confederate Army advanced on Franklin, the men of the 4th Corps out in those fields ran for their lives. The finish line in their run was the Union Army’s main works and the only path to those works was Columbia Pike. As William and the 26th Ohio crossed the finish line and passed beyond the works the rebels were only 50 yards behind. Within seconds they breached the main works at the pike and were in battle with an advancing Union Regiment, the 44th Missouri. One of the heroic regiments on that November afternoon, the 44th found new company. A fifteen year old and his brothers of the 26th had melted into their company and were also in combat with the enemy. In that situation it was only the color blue that mattered. David Bragg and John Worley were captured, and Joseph Kern went missing in the melee. William would later write:

“I jumped over the works just east of the locust grove near … the Carter house. Finding the works practically empty, we stopped, and as soon as our men seemed to be in we began to fire as rapidly as possible. The batteries on both sides began to fire with great rapidity into the advancing ranks. Soon a cloud of smoke hung over us and nothing was distinct in front. …

 “Some of the Confederates were on the opposite side of the works from us. When a lull would occur, some of these would offer to surrender. We would cry out, ‘Drop your guns and climb over.’ This they did, and this was repeated a number of times. Some of them crossed the works so close to me that I could have touched them with my hand.

“In the part of the line where I stood were men of many commands…….

Well, that is the short story of a longer one about a fifteen year old Ohioan in Tennessee in the year 1864. Later William Gist would contribute many newspaper accounts, magazine articles, and a book about the actions of the 26th Ohio at Franklin. Visit  and in the reference list of the written word about the regiment there are many listed. I found that if I google the title portion of those articles many of them are available online. Also visit  a website dedicated to the regiment.

Wm. Gist William Wesley Gist (photo from Chris Burson and find-a-grave)

In 1876 William Wesley Gist married Lillian Jeanette Hurlburt of Ashtabula, Ohio. He was a teacher and school superintendent in Willoughby, Ohio; a professor of English literature at Coe College , Cedar Rapids, Iowa; a pastor of the Congregational church of Marion, Iowa and then of the Congregational church of Osage, Iowa; a member of the faculty of Iowa State Teachers College at Cedar Falls, teaching English literature, rhetoric, and Bible. He was elected Commander of the Department State of Iowa, G.A.R. at Fort Dodge on June 6, 1923, dying two days later at his home in Cedar Falls.

William and Lillian had eleven children and they and four of their children are buried at Oak Shade Cemetery, Marion, Iowa. For more details, particularly about Lillian, see

Teachable Moment – Civil War “Impressed” Blacks

“Impressed Laborers” – by definition this is simply taking men into service by force,

with or without their consent. Spend time, read the names, listen to their stories.

During the Civil War the Union Army’s supplies were delivered by rail and water. Not unlike our highways fueling our economy today, the Mississippi, Ohio, Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers’ were highways fueling Grant, Sherman, Thomas and other Union Generals in our country’s mid-section. A recent post was about the Union Supply Depot at Johnsonville, Tennessee (see; Josiah Meigs and the 2nd U.S. Colored Light Artillery, Battery “A”). The Nashville-Northwestern Railroad was the connecting road from that depot on the Tennessee River to Nashville and railroads to Chattanooga, Atlanta, and Decatur (AL).

When the war started 24 miles of rail had been completed from Nashville to Kingston Springs to the west. It would be the Union Army that would complete the line to the Tennessee River.

Federal troops camped at Johnsonville oversaw the construction. Much of the labor came from free blacks and escaped slaves joined by Irish immigrants. Many of the black laborers became members of the United States Colored Troops and some stayed behind after the construction to guard the railroad.

The paragraphs above is the story, quite compressed, taken from articles written to document the building of the railroad and the place it and Johnsonville had during the Civil War. Much more compelling to the actual events and people are original documents from the period. I must confess that despite the passion to learn, I am quite short on the technical ability to (literally) inset a document here and must lead you to complete the task of looking at, and appreciating its historical value, a treasure found online.

  • Go to “Zoom To Engagement”
  • Down arrow and go to Johnsonville (11/4/1864)
  • On the detail panel to the right open the document “N&NWLabor_1863.pdf”

Fifty-seven (57) “impressed blacks” names written onto this Roll of Negros Impressed for Service on the North-Western Railroad, the majority from Montgomery County and Clarksville, TN.

Spend time, read the names, listen to their stories.

Finding Their Footprints – Nashville and Decatur Railroad

Ed. Note – This post is as much about the maps as it is about the detail behind them. Eric and Richard don’t need me to retell stories.

Where did your ancestor walk?

One of my later life thrills has been being able to walk where my Civil War ancestor walked 150 years ago. Think of where you stand at this very moment. Who stood there before you; a president, a Native American, your great-grandfather? Our (my wife’s and my) great-grandfathers’ were in Columbia, Tennessee in 1864 and one of them, with the 175th OVI Co. K, may well have been assigned to help protect an important Union Army supply railroad in middle Tennessee. We find that if he was so assigned he was able to come out from that duty assignment to continue on with his regiment and their future assignments. What of your great-grandfather?

No official records exist regarding the Blockhouses, camps, and, or stockades that were built and manned to protect the Nashville to Decatur Railroad before and after Hood’s Tennessee operations. General Grenville Dodge had been put in charge of building these defenses prior to 1864. Records that he kept with locations and a series of corresponding numbers do not match up with what we now know. The latter is, in large part, attributed to Eric Jacobson and Richard Rupp and their exhaustive research for their book Baptism of Fire. Thanks to them we are able to better follow our ancestor-soldier’s foot-steps through Tennessee’s landscape.

Apparently there were as many as thirty-six of these posts manned between Nashville and Decatur, twenty-five in the state of Tennessee. For the purpose of this article we concentrate on those between southern-most Pulaski and Spring Hill to its north. Again, thanks to Eric and Richard for doing what they do so well; telling history.

When the 175th Ohio Volunteer Regiment arrived in Tennessee in October, 1864 they were immediately tasked with helping protect Columbia and some of those rail-line posts nearby. The following is what we know, or don’t – the names listed are known to have been at these locations. Obviously they are but a small few of those that were actually there. History, in most cases their deaths’ or capture, has written their names into its pages.

#5, Carter’s Station; On Oct. 1, 1864, in a raid by Nathen Bedford Forrest’s Cavalry the blockhouses at #5, 4, and 3 were burned to the ground.* Soon after Forrest withdrew and men from the 175th Co. C were assigned to #5, replacing Pennsylvania’s 7th Cavalry there. Google Map address 2998 Carters Creek Station Rd., Columbia Tennessee. The old blockhouse, saw mill and water tank were at this intersection, likely near the creek. Cross the railroad tracks and Carters Creek is at the small bridge…..Pvt. Garner Hinshaw.

*report A. Kramer 68th NY Regt. Or. Ser. I, Vol. 39, pt. I, pp 507-508

#6 Carter’s Trestle; Thirteen men from the 175th Co. G were posted at #6 in April, 1865. Located north of Columbia where Carter’s Creek crosses the rail-line – there are about four such locations so the exact place cannot be determined. Google Map address 282 Carters Creek Pike, Tennessee and you are at one of the intersections – the southern-most and most likely….Lt. Samuel Jolly (it seems that Lt. Jolly was in charge of at least #6 and #8).

#7. Unable to determine and not mentioned. Again there are about four track crossings that could be the location.

#8. Unable to determine, but somewhere near #6, and before the Rutherford Creek posts #9 through #12 that follow. Again, there are a few possible locations. Thirteen men from the 175th Co. E, along with men from Co. G, were posted at #8 in April, 1865….Lt. Samuel Jolly, in charge, Pvt. Silas Wardlow (Co. G).

#9. Men from the 175th Ohio were posted at #9, #10, #11, and #12. In some cases the companies are not known. Google Map address 723 Theta Pike, Columbia, TN and you will be in the midst of these Blockhouses which were located north to south on the four twists of Rutherford Creek where they cross the rail tracks…..Capt. William P. Wolf, age 35, of Co. G was put in charge of these four posts. William mustered in as a Private with Co. A and was promoted to Captain in September.

#10. Men from the 175th Ohio were posted at #10. Google Map address 723 Theta Pike, Columbia, TN and you will be in the midst of the four Blockhouses, #9, #10, #11, #12 which were located north to south on the four twists of the creek (Rutherford Creek) where they cross the rail tracks.

#11. Men from the 175th Ohio were posted here before and during Hood’s operations in Tennessee. Also, Capt. William Wolf’s headquarters was here at #11. Then on Dec. 28, 1864 “what remained of” the 175th Co. G was sent here for duty. Also at some time after the main battles in the area were over men from Co. H were also posted at #11. Google Map address 723 Theta Pike, Columbia, TN and you will be in the midst of the four Blockhouses, #9, #10, #11, #12 which were located north to south on the four twists of the creek (Rutherford Creek) where they cross the rail tracks.

#12. Men from the 175th Ohio were posted here before and during Hood’s operations in TN. Also after, on Dec. 27, 1864 Capt. Jon Hill took thirty-eight men from the 175th Co. H and occupied #12. Google Map address 723 Theta Pike, Columbia, TN and you will be in the midst of the four Blockhouses, #9, #10, #11, #12 which were located north to south on the four twists of the Rutherford Creek where they cross the rail tracks. It was also here that the 44th Missouri and 183rd Ohio Regiment unloaded upon arriving near Columbia on Nov. 28, 1864.

Duck River Station, Google Map 915 Tennessee 7, Columbia, Tennessee. Looking west toward the industrial complex we are as close as we can get to the spot where the old station was, assuming it was even on the river.

Lynnville Station; Lt. George W. Henderson and thirty-nine of his men from the 175th Co. F were posted at a stockade built to protect the rail station there. Google Maps address Church Street / Tennessee 129, Lynnville, Tennessee.

  • Here, a paragraph of “exasperation” is in order. As mentioned earlier, there exists confusion over the locations of some of the posts we are writing about. The author admits some confusion here despite Eric and Richard’s hard work. There is mention of four “blockhouses” south of Columbia, the first through the fourth of many more to the south. The names were Harris, Culleoka, Graces, and Robertson. If I am to take these names in order north to south and also apply some other research I am unable to locate Harris. Twenty-one men from the 175th Co. A were assigned to Harris. There is mention of a post “just south of Lynnville Station” and it is possible that is Harris. There is also mention that this post was at Robertson Trestle – barely one-quarter mile south of Lynnville is a crossing of the rail and Robertson Fork Creek. Possibly the list should read south to north, which would make #15 Harris. I will continue to look and hope that I can find Company A someday.
  • It has been established that the four above mentioned locations were not blockhouses, but in fact all were camps of other sorts.

#13. Also identified as Culleoka, twenty-two men of the 175th Co. E were posted here on Oct 25, 1864. Google Map address Columbia Highway / Milky Way Rd., Pulaski, TN. Just to the east #13 is located where the creek and rail track cross. Just to the south of that is #14, where again the cross…..Pvt. Lee Carl Donley, Zeno Donley, Jacob Lafery (wounded and possibly later died). The men here were barely able to escape capture.

Fifty-four men from the 175th Co. I were also assigned to #13.

#14. Also identified as Graces, twenty-two men from the 175th Co. G were posted here on Oct. 25, 1864. Google Map address Columbia Highway / Milky Way Rd., Pulaski, TN. Just to the east #13 is located where the creek and rail track cross. Just to the south of that is #14, where again they cross. On Nov. 25, 1864 these 22 men plus a wagoner named Cusick were all captured……..Lt. William Barrere, Sgt. Matthew Van Eman, Cpl. Perry Hoss, Cpl. Joseph E. Winters and Private’s Benton B. Badgeley, Alva Laymen, Courtland C. Cusick, James H. Shank, Pvt. George W. Eakins, John W. Eakins, Norman Bercaw, George W. Boyd, James H. Burroughs, James Casto, Edward Crossen, Carey Easter, Morris Greeley, James Hudson, Benjamin Monce, Stacy Morris, William H. Oliver. Israel Sidles, Trimble Strain .

Twenty-seven men from the 175th Co. K were also assigned to #14.

#15. Twenty-one men from the 175th Co. B were assigned to #15. On Nov. 24 thirteen of the men were captured and taken prisoner. Also men from the 175th Co. E were assigned there and six of them were taken prisoner. Google Map address 5662 Columbia Highway, TN. Just to the west #15 is located where the rail-line crosses Richland Creek……..Co. B; Lt. Thomas J. McKeehan, Sgt. Joseph Tener, Pvt. Lewis Fry, Pvt. Sommers Conover, Pvt. George W. Conover, Cpl. William Beekman, Cpl. Luther McClelland, Pvt. Henry Butler, Pvt. William Earhart, Pvt. George E. Mattox, Pvt. Charles Moberly, Pvt. Jacob R. Slagle.

From Co. E; Private’s John Barnes, Thomas J. Gray, John Marconette, Thomas Easton Hemings*, John Moore, and George H. Washburn were captured. Pvt. Lee Donley was able to escape.

*Thomas Hemings grandmother has been identified as Sally Hemings who lived at Jefferson’s Monticello. A story for another time. (E, Jacobson – Baptism of Fire)

#16. Twenty-one men from the 175th Co. D were assigned to #16. We are unable to determine exactly where, but the post is “a few miles south of Pulaski at Richland Creek Trestle.” The railroad seems to now run parallel with the creek here. Google Map address 1195 U.S. 64, Pulaski, TN and follow the rail-line and Richland Creek as they run south. Commended by Lt. Francis M. Harover, the post was very isolated. At least twenty of the men were captured and taken prisoner on Nov. 24, 1864……Harover, Cpl. Jerimiah Paul, Pvt. James Reed, Pvt. John Hetherman, Pvt. Lawrence Schlitz, Pvt. James D. Howard, 1st Sgt. David Flagher, Sgt. James Graham, Cpl. Timothy Pancoast, Privates’ James Bayne, Benjamin Botts, William Carroll, Samuel Holmes, William Little, Timothy Mahaney, John Rains, William J. Richmond, William Shelton, Joseph C. Sroufe, Othello Timmons.