Chancellor Bearden

Confederate Officer and Chancery Judge

Birth: January 10, 1843 in Lincoln County Tennessee
Death: Dec. 15, 1919 Shelbyville, Bedford County, Tennessee

Before the dawn of the American Civil War, Tennessee was deeply divided. Tennessee voted down secession at the outbreak of the movement. Shelbyville, Tennessee, in particular, was referred to as “Little Boston” for it’s anti secession sentiment. Like many, once a state resolved it’s direction, the oath of many civilians followed the allegiance to their state.

Walter was the son of Benjamin Franklin and Susan Blake Bearden, wed in 1841. He was descended from Thomas Bearden and his wife Abigale Hammock in Spartanburg, S.C. He was married to Marguerette C. Whiteside in 1874. They were sometimes referred to as W.S. and Maggie. He was Chancery Judge. He was said to have kept a Bible with records of the Bearden family history.

CAPTAIN WALTER SCOTT BEARDEN

SHELBYVILLE, TENNESSEE

This ripe scholar, successful lawyer, ex-soldier, and popular gentleman, was born in Petersburg, Lincoln county, Tennessee, January 10, 1844. As a child he was fond of study, was an apt scholar, and by the time he was twelve or thirteen years of age was in the leading classes in mathematics and the classics in the academy he attended. At fifteen he began to assist in teaching, always choosing the advanced classes, and began to support himself before there was a hair upon his face. Since fifteen years of age he has cost no man a cent. At sixteen, he carried a class through Davies’ Bourdon (algebra), having himself solved every problem in it. He had mastered the curriculum in the schools near his home before he was old enough to go to college, and continued to assist in giving instruction till the fall of 1860, when he entered Emory and Henry College, Virginia, and remained till the following spring, when the college closed on account of the war. He returned after the war (1865-66).

From his earliest years he has been a great reader and studied with keen interest a great variety of misccllancous works. Often he and his brother would lie in bed at night and read until 2 o’clock. In this way he acquired a valuable stock of information on many subjects, besides cultivating facility of expression and becoming familiar with the language of standard writers. Returning to Tennessee in the spring of 1861, he taught a country school near Petersburg a few months.

He next assisted in raising a company for the Confederate service­ – Company E, Forty-first Tennessee regiment – and was made second­ lieutenant, although not quite eighteen years old. At the battle of Fort Donelson he was captured with his regiment and imprisoned several months at Camp Chase and Johnson’s Island. After the exchange and reorganization of his regiment he was elected first-lieutenant, and during the last two years of the war was captain of his company. He saw war in all its vicissitudes – ­cavalry fights, infantry fights and fights with gunboats – the field, the march, the camp and the prison. He was in the campaign around Vicksburg, during which his regiment formed a part of Gregg’s famous brigade, and went through one of the toughest campaigns endured by any body of troops during the struggle. He was in the Dalton and Atlanta campaign from New Hope church to Jonesborough, during which time his company suffered severely, and Captain Bearden was three times wounded. He was at Peachtree Creek, Georgia, on July 20, 1864; on the right of Atlanta in the same month, and at Jonesborough, Georgia, August 31,1864, where he received a severe wound in the thigh, which disabled him and put him on crutches for the rest of the war (family legend has it that he was shot in the upper thigh, he was presumed beyond survival. A young nurse from Shelbyville, Tennessee attended to his wounds, saving his life. They married in 1874). After the Jonesborough battle he went to Aberdeen, Mississippi, and there remained till the surrender.

During the latter part of the war Captain Bearden organized a body of men and protected the cotton in a large section of the country from persons who were trying to get it away before the arrival of the Federal troops, who expecting to find it would probably have laid waste the country if disappointed in what they regarded as war booty. Hearing that the planters would be held accountable for all of the cotton that ought to be in that region, Capt. Bearden and the men whom he drew around him, protected it until the arrival of the Federals and thus saved many plantations from pillage and destruction. At the close of the war he went to Meridian, Mississippi, to get his parole, and was pressed into service by the Federal commander to assist in preparing paroles, and made them out for nearly five thousand Confederate soldiers. His twin brother, Edwin R. Bearden, who was a lieutenant in his company, and had commanded it at Chickamauga (Brotherton Farm), where he was severely wounded, was with him on this occasion, and was also pressed into the same service of paroling Confederates.

Captain Bearden returned to Petersburg, Tennessee, after the war was over, and being in very poor health took to doing all sorts of hard work, such as cutting and hauling wood, in hope of restoring his health. In the later part of 1866, he moved to Shelbyville and assisted Maj. Randolph in Dixon Academy several months, teaching a part of each day and spending the rest of his time reading law in the office of Samuel Whitthorne, Esq. Early in 1867 he was admitted to the bar by Judge Henry Cooper and Chancellor Steele, and at once began practice in partnership with Mr. Whitthorne, continuing with him a little more than a year, since which time he has practiced alone, always doing a large business and leading a very active life.

Previous to the war all of Captain Bearden’s political predilections were in favor of the Whig party; in later years he has been a Democrat, but never an “offensive partisan.” He has been chairman of the Bedford county Democratic executive committee, has presided at numerous political meetings and attended various conventions, but while taking a lively interest in politics, and freely expressing his opinions on whatever questions came up, he has steadily refused to become a candidate for any office whatever, though often solicited to do so.

Captain Bearden became a Mason in Mississippi during the war, and was made a Royal Arch Mason, under a special dispensation from the grand Masonic bodies of Mississippi, about one month after he was twenty-one years old. He became High Priest of Tannehill Chapter, No. 40, R. A. M., at Shelbyville, about 1870, and: held the position for ten years. He became a Knight Templar in Murfreesborough Commandery, No. 10, in 1877, and attended the Triennial Conclave of the order at Chicago in 1880. He has taken a great interest in Masonry, and has collected many rare and valuable books on that subject.

Captain Bearden has at different times taken a considerable part in newspaper work, and during 1870 and 1871, wrote for the Nashville Banner over the nom de plume (pen name) of “To Date,” and contributed a column or more each week, which formed a complete history of Bedford county during those years. He also took a warm interest in newspaper work in his own town, and though not officially connected with any of the papers, assisted greatly in establishing the Shelbyville Commercial, and wrote for it about one year during its infancy. He has always been esteemed a ready, pointed and effective writer.

He has been interested actively in fire insurance (his son Walter, Jr. would found National Life & Accident Insurance, founder of WSM Radio and the Grand Ole Opry) for a number of years, representing the Liverpool, London and Globe, the Home, of New York, the Phoenix, of Hartford, and for a while the old Franklin, of Philadelphia, as well as numerous other companies, and has done a large business for them in his part of the State. He has been attorney for the Nashville, Chattanooga and St. Louis railroad for several years. He was one of the promoters of the Sylvan mills, near Shelbyville, and has been a director in the company since its organzation; is also a director of the Charter mills at Wartrace.

Capt. Bearden’s father, Dr. B. F. Bearden, a native of South Carolina, came to Tennessee in his youth. He was a man of great breadth of mind, a leader in his profession, a thinker, and a man of learning, but withal very modest. He died in 1870. All of the Beardens in this country are related, and are supposed to be descended from the early French settlers of South Carolina. As a family they have been remarkable for their sound, practical, common sense. Capt. Bearden’s mother was Miss S. M. Blake, of Lincoln county, a lady of Scotch blood, and a sister of Rev. Dr. T. C. Blake, of Nashville.

Capt. Bearden married in February, 1874, Miss Maggie C. Whiteside, daughter of Thomas C. Whiteside, a well-known lawyer of Shelbyville. Her mother was Miss Robinson, of Winchester, Tennessee. To this union have been born two sons and three daughters.

Capt. Bearden has been a member of the Presbyterian church about twelve years.

He began life with nothing in the way of capital, but with a good education, backed by industry and energy, punctual attention to business and an earnest desire to succeed. He always strikes while the iron is at welding heat. His methodical arrangement of his business, as well as his information on a great variety of subjects, has contributed largely to his success. Every paper is kept in its proper place, every stray bit of information is carefully noted down. He has ever striven to check litigation. Conservative in disposition, he aims to get the rights of his clients and then stop the case, and loves justice for its own sake. But whenever there are hard blows to be given, whenever wrong-doing is to be crushed, he goes in to deal sledge hammer blows. Striving to do justice to all men, he never changes his clients according to what they are worth, but for the value of his services and no more.

He is now said to be a candidate for the chancellorship of the Fourth chancery division of Tennessee, at the next judicial election.

From: Sketches of Prominent Tennesseans: Containing Biographies and Records of Many of the Families who Have Attained Prominence in Tennessee

w-s-bearden-family600

Obituary:

“Judge Walter Scott Bearden, eminent jurist of Tennessee, died at his home in Shelbyville on December 15, after an illness of several months. at the time of his death Judge Bearden was Chancellor of the Fifth Division of the State, and previous to his election to this office he had been judge of the Chancery court of the Fourth Division since 1886, making a total service on the chancery bench of thirty-three years.”

Judge Bearden was a native of Petersburg, Lincoln County, Tenn., where he was born on January 10, 1843, the son of Benjamin Franklin and Susan Margaret Blake Bearden. He received his education at Emory and Henry College, which he left before graduation to enter the Confederate army, in which he served with distinction, becoming a captain in 1864.

In 1874 Judge Bearden was married to Miss Margaret Cooper Whiteside, who proceeded in him in death. He is survived by two sons and two daughters.

He was a prominent Mason, being a Knight Templar and a member of the Scottish Rite, holding membership in the Murfreesboro and Nashville Lodges. He was a member of the Presbyterian Church and a man held in the highest esteem throughout the scenes of his long and honorable judicial service.

SOURCE; Confederate Veteran Magazine, January,1920 Courtesy of David Lacy

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41st TN CSA Reunion

In 1900, the household included: W.S. and Maggie, son: Ed W. age 25, his wife Juliet, age 20, their 4 month son, Edwin R., Daughters: Mary H. age 20, and Sue age 16 son: Walter S. age 18 and James F. Whiteside, age 46, druggist, most likely related to Maggie. The undertaker F. R. Bearden determined the cause of death to be abdominal aortic aneurism with myocardarditis.

Books:

The beleaguered forty first Tennessee

Reminiscences of the 41st Tennessee: The Civil War in the West

Deep Roots in Solid Ground

History in my DNA

“I can hardly turn a page of Tennessee history without finding my relatives fingerprints on them.”

cart-kerr

From Tennessee founding father Richard Henderson (Hendersonville namesake) to the long line of Phillips military heroes, to the Grand Ole Opry, I can’t turn a page of Tennessee history without connecting a relative to it. My great-great grandfather William Washington Kerr, ran a grocery on Carroll Street in Nashville. My grandmother started a free school meal program at Howard school, food provided by her fathers Grocery. At the time of her death, the Tennessean reported it to be a first of it’s kind.

Notable Kin:free-lunch

Captain / Reverend David Phillips – Revolutionary War Pennsylvania Militia

Captain James Maxwell* (1725–1806) – Revolutionary War

William Maxwell (1756–1838) – Revolutionary War – King’s Mtn.

David Phillips II – War of 1812 – Battle of New Orleans

Richard Henderson – Land Developer of Tennessee

Wilson L. Waters – Industrialist, Whig Party leader, Watertown namesake

Captain Walter Scott Bearden – 41st Tennessee CSA –  Chickamauga, Chattanooga, Fort Donelson, etc. Wounded 3 times Battle of Atlanta (his twin brother Edwin Bearden was an officer in the same regiment). Chancellor Circuit Judge Shelbyville, Tennessee.

2n Lt. David L. Phillips – 7th Tennessee CSA – Pickets Charge, Gettysburg, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Seven Pines, etc.

Major Shelah Waters – 5th Tennessee Cavalry USA, Presidential nominee as Minister to Ecuador and IRS assessor.

Edwin Bearden – Judge Shelbyville, Tennessee

Water Scott Bearden, Jr. – Founder of National Life & Accident Insurance Company

old-hickory-singersJoseph Macpherson – New York Metropolitan Opera. First vocalist on WSM radio. Old Hickory Singers.

Uncle Dave Macon – founding member Grand Ole Opry

Margaret Kerr Bearden – first free school lunch program Nashville

J.B. Henderson, Sr. – owner Southwestern Publishing Company

W.E. Henderson – 2nd Lt. 77th New York Regiment, 82nd Infantry – Arden Forrest Champaign- Sales Manager Southwestern Company

Harry Phillips – author of The Phillips Family History, Lt. Cdr. U.S. Navy WWII, Tennessee House of Representative, Assistant Tennessee Attorney General, Federal 6th Circuit Court of Appeals

Bruce D. Henderson – founder The Boston Consulting Group

2nd Lt. David Kerr – 301st Bomb Group B-17 pilot KIA Wiener-Neudorf raid July 1944

Navy Corpsman Edwin Phillips – wounded Normandy landing WWII

J.B. Henderson, Jr. – Navy test pilot

Bobby and Carol Henderson – founders Westminster School (Currey-Ingram Academy)

more notables are in development…

* Father of James Maxwell: Alexander 2nd Baronet of Monreith Maxwell was born in 1682 in Monreith, Wigtownshire, Scotland, to Elizabeth Heiress of Park Hay, age 28, and William 1st Baronet of Monreith Maxwell, age 47.

Birth: 1682 • Monreith, Wigtownshire, Scotland

Books:

Phillips Family History: A Brief History of the Phillips Family, Beginning with the Emigration From Wales, and a Detailed Genealogy of the Descendants … Pioneer Citizens of Wilson County, Tenn.

 

The David Phillips Tragedy

THE DAVID PHILLIPS TRAGEDY  1839-1869

2nd LT. DAVID L. PHILLIPS – 7TH TENNESSEE

On Amazon


Company K – Captain Robert Hatton, Thomas H. Bostick, Archibald D. Norris – “The Blues” – Men from Wilson County. [2]

“Nil desperandum” – David Phillips 1862

Revised: 04FEB17

06 JAN 2017 | Tennessee State Archives | 

Yesterday, I held my GG uncles diary in my shaking hands. 

Yesterday, I learned that there are more details after David’s last diary entry March 7, 1863.

Yesterday, an hour prior, I located his cousins service revolver and two red sash’s on display in the Civil War section of the Tennessee State Museum.

Yesterday, Major Waters USA and Lt. Phillips CSA swirled around my head like the snow on Capital Hill. I looked up at Sam Davis, as I turned the corner on 7th to the state archives, praying David’s diary was where it should be. Not only did I find it, I also uncovered a lot about my Waters side of the family. An article written for the Wilson County Bicentennial, explains their Union support of the war, in a town that was very Confederate.

cemetery-image
Major Shelah Waters

192 days ago, I went to the Nashville National Cemetery to shoot the Boy Scouts planting flags for Memorial Day. My last shot was down a row of Civil War veteran headstones to capture the Minnesota Monument in the background. As I was standing up, I recognized a family name that was familiar, because it is so odd: Major Shelah Waters. There are over 20,000 Civil War graves alone in that cemetery. I randonally choose this one to lay down in front of.

David was captured for a second time (first at Seven Pines) at The Stone Wall in Pickets Charge. In that suicidal attack, the 7th were part of a handful that made it to The Angle, losing 118 out of 276 men (43%). This has been described as the high-water mark of the Confederacy.

360º Pano at The Angle at Gettysburg

These are exciting developments which add to the drama of this amazing man. The source of this material can be found on this FaceBook site.  A great book about the 7th Tennessee is The 7th Tennessee Infantry in the Civil War: A History and Roster, William Thomas Venner on Goodreads.

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In his diary, there were a number of pages in the front and back of the two pocket diaries, that have not been transcribed. I have included them here in this PDF. I could probably use some help with transcriptions.

Thomas and Shelah Waters

Watertown, Tennessee

My GGF’s brother, Lt. David L. Phillips, signed up for the Confederacy right after his state of Tennessee entered the American Civil War June 8, 1861. He served in Virginia all the way from Cheat Mountain to Appomattox Courthouse, being captured twice, exchanged once and escaped once.

It must have been a difficult decision for him, as Wilson County Tennessee was bitterly divided. His first cousins, Major Shelah Waters (male), Major Thomas Waters, enlisted/commissioned on the Union side with the 5th Cavalry Tennessee U.S. Shelah and David were classmates at Union University in Murfreesboro, Tennessee (Waters in 1857-1860 and Phillips in 1857-1861). David Phillips was a brother of Phi Gamma Delta, which is inscribed in his diary. Cousin Shelah was too. The history of Phi Gamma Delta at Union University.

Members of the extended Phillips family line in Watertown, Tennessee who fought in The War Between the States:

27 Confederate | 7 U.S. Army

Watertown Confederate Army

  • Smith Allen KIA Franklin CSA
  • Elias Benjamin Bass CSA
  • John Bass Captain CSA
  • John L. Bass CSA
  • Thomas Bass KIA d.1865 CSA
  • Thomas Bass KIA d.1863 CSA
  • John Wiseman Bass Captured CSA
  • William Emsley Bass CSA
  • Petter Donnell Co. C 4th TN Cavalry CSA
  • William Evans CSA
  • David Wilson Grandstaff captured 4th TN Cavalry CSA
  • David Wilson Grandstaff 1st LT 4th TN Cavalry Co. C CSA
  • Isaac Preston Grandstaff CSA
  • Samuel Archibald Grandstaff KIA Stones River CSA
  • William Dillard Grandstaff CSA
  • Samuel B. Lambert  CSA
  • Benjamin Phillips CSA
  • David L. Phillips – Union University – 2nd Lt. 7th Infantry
  • James Madison Phillips –  Union University – Major Forrest 4th TN Cavalry CSA
  • John Phillips CSA
  • Joshua Phillips CSA – Wounded at Shiloh, lost one eye, farm ransacked by Union
  • Matt Phillips Captain CSA
  • Sion B. Phillips CSA
  • Thomas Phillips CSA
  • William Phillips Forrest – Stones River – Shot off his horse – CSA
  • William Preston Phillips Forrest CSA
  • Edward Price CSA

 Watertown United States Army

  • Ezekiel Bass Captain USA
  • John Berry USA
  • George Oakley KIA USA
  • James Oakley Captain USA
  • John Wilson Phillips USA
  • Shelah Waters – Union University – Major 5th TN Cavalry USA
  • Thomas Waters – Union University –  Major 5th TN Cavalry USA

His diary accounts for almost ever day of his war – up until the regiment started taking significant losses in late May of 1862. Like most combat veterans, the narrative stops.

David did not reconnect with his sweetheart after he returned home from the war. He returned to teaching, and died less than four years later in 1869.

David Phillips Diary – book 1 of 2

Reading between the lines:

The drawing on the front page of David’s diary appears to be a Waning Crescent Moon behind the phrase  “Nil desperandum” latin for never despair. David was of Welsh (Celt) ancestry. It could also be a “C” for confederate.

“There is a moon goddess also worshiped by the Celts, who is associated with the lunar cycles. The word ‘crescent’ comes from the Latin term ceres meaning to ‘bring forth, create’ and crescere, the Latin term for ‘grow, thrive’.  Waning Crescent: symbolizes the expulsion of negative energy in your life, getting rid of things you know you don’t need, or those things/people/habits, etc which are harming you.”  – DaphneShadows

Excerpts from Davids Diary:

“December 3rd [1861]. Archie and I went to Rockbridge Alum Springs [Virginia] on a looking expedition. The buildings at the Springs are very nice. There are a good many sick soldiers in the rooms of the hotel which are used for a hos­pital. We got a splendid dinner at the hotel which in part is still devoted to the entertainment of visitors. Came back to camp in evening.”

“December 4th. Got a letter from John [brother]  from which I learned he was about to volunteer**. Went to Old Millboro in evening with Justiss. Made the acquaintance of a merry old toiler. Bought some apples from him and got a splendid supper at his house. Returned to camps by dark. Gilham’s regiment left for Staunton on the evening train.”

“December 13th. Day fine. Archie and I had a regular old corn shuck­ing scuffle. It was ‘give and take’ for some time; finally Archie was routed, having got a sore knee and a bruised hand. During the contest we ren­dered tent ‘hors du combat’ by knocking it down. Captain Bostic got back from home at night; boys glad to see him. He brought a great many letters for the regiment. None for me. Through some that he brought I learned with regret that Tommy, Levi, and Luster* had been drafted. Bad news from all quarters about home.”

david-phillips
3rd Lt. Phillips circa 1863

“December 16th. Up early preparing for our march. Boys didn’t like the idea of going on the Potomac. Got ourselves ready for traveling about 9. Left camps enroute for Strasburg about 9:30 a. m. We went through Staunton and took the valley turnpike. Went through town with colors fly­ing and drums beating. The ladies greeted us by waving handkerchiefs. Some I noticed weeping at, as I supposed, the recollection of son or husband who were away soldiering like us. Found the pike to be a real one running through the finest country I have seen in Virginia. The inhabitants very hospitable and generous. There seemed to be a dearth of young and mid­dle aged men. Marched about 8 miles and camped just beyond Willow Spout Spring. Adjacent to the camp ground was an old stone church in a cluster of large oaks. Preaching was appointed in the church. Went to attend the services, found the house crowded. The church is called Stonyfort and is said to be about 125 years old. Parson Boydston preached and after preaching the pastor (a fine looking man of 35 or 40) gave us a most eloquent and impressive talk.”

“December 31st. The last day of 1861 has come. I am still living the life of a soldier. I see no prospect for peace in the incoming year. Oh, how my heart would leap for joy if peace were declared and I permitted to return. I look back over my past year and see nothing of profit I have done. May my hour of usefulness soon come. I am tired of doing nothing and gaining nothing.  The sky indicates rain, the sun refuses to shine. It seems as if the dying year would weep over the unhappy state of my coun­try. May the bright sun of peace soon light up and enliven our sunny South, making our firesides happy and our homes the homes of peace. The year of 1861 aieu forever.” 

– Private David Phillips

“Seeing The Elephant”

In 1862, Hatton and his men were ordered to the Richmond area to stop Federal Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan’s drive on the Confederate capital. During the resulting Peninsula Campaign, Hatton served with distinction, and on May 23, 1862, he was promoted to brigadier general of the 4th Brigade, 1st Division, Army of Northern Virginia; this appointment was not confirmed by the Confederate Congress.  Just eight days later, he was shot in the head and killed while leading his Tennessee Brigade at the Battle of Fair Oaks.  -Wikipedia

In May of 1862, enlistments were up and new officers elected. This resulted in a new command structure that was leaner and more competently led, but bad news from home arrived: the utter route of Gen. John Hunt Morgan in Lebanon, Tennessee. The men of Wilson County were infuriated by the news.

“Shockingly, the boys from Wilson County received a report of a fight right in the streets of their home town—Lebanon. An astonished Robert Hatton wrote, ‘The Yankees are in Lebanon? My house surrounded by a hostile foe.’  This initial story was soon followed by successive accounts of the fight, each story providing details of appalling verity—not only had Confederate troops been defeated, they had run away! Colonel Hatton reacted: ‘[ I am] disgusted at … what I heard.’ David Phillips wrote, ‘Oh, how distressingly sad it is to be so completely cut off from home.’” – The 7th Tennessee Infantry in the Civil War

Protests were made by Tennessee regimental commanders to be reassigned to their home state. They fell on deaf ears in Richmond, Virginia. Colonel George Maney (Franklin, TN), forced the issue, employing his political connections to be shipped back home, but no others. The 7th were dumfounded by this news.

The first dance with the Grim Reaper began on May 31, 1862. Spirits were high, as their beloved 36 year old Col. Robert “Bob” Hatton, was promoted to General in command their Brigade (the 1st, 7th, 14th Tennessee and a four gun battery called Braxton’s battery). On the night of May 30th, 1862, General Hatton received word to prepare his troops for battle. “If I should not return, be a mother to my wife and children.” he prophetically wrote to his parents. To his wife Sophie: “The struggle, will no doubt, be bloody; that we will triumph, and that gloriously, I am confident. Would that I might bind to my heart, before the battle, my wife and children. That pleasure may never again be granted to me. If so, farewell; and may the God of all mercy be to you and ours, a guardian and friend. “If we meet again, we’ll smile; If not, this parting has been well.” Affectionately, your husband, R. Hatton.

The next morning General Hatton marched his brigade 7 miles along the Richmond – Yorktown rail line.  As the Tennesseans hurried toward the conflict they passed President Jefferson Davis, and also caught glimpses of  Generals Joesph E. Johnston and Robert E. Lee along the way. The entire Confederate high-command were on the sidelines watching this unfold.

Around 2 PM Hatton received orders to fight.

 Fair Oaks Virginia: “The occasion is at hand, and I confidently expect that you will acquit yourselves as noble heroes” “load”, “fix bayonets” and finally “forward, guide center.”

In an oat field, just north of Fair Oaks, Hatton’s Brigade attacked, in the open, a brigade of Massachusetts and Michigan regiments embedded in thick woods. Early in the battle, Hatton had his horse shot out. Saber raised, he coolly moved forward on foot a short distance, before being struck down by shot or shell. He died before anyone noticed him.

A 1000 man volley decimated the green Confederates. Finally, after darkness enveloped the battlefield, the order was given to withdraw. The 7th began it’s slide to the rear, but in the darkness and tangled foliage, Private Phillips Company K stumbled into union lines and had no choice other than to surrender. He was sent to Fort Delaware. He would be exchanged 3 months later.

144 out of 594 7th Tennessee young men were claimed in the Battle of Seven Pines (24%). General Hatton remains, in stone, on the Lebanon Town Square.

general-hatton
Gen. Hatton | Lebanon Square
Gen. Bob Hatton

“The Curtain Falls”


“March 7th, 1863. Time has slipped away like magic since last I wrote in this book. Nearly seven months gone with their burden of marches, toils and battles. Five battles have I witnessed and in which I was actively en­gaged. Many miles I have marched till worn and weary, but here I am sound and well, enjoying life as best I can. For the past three months we have had an easy time, but the next six are to be dreaded. I hope I may always have such luck as I have had thus far, except ‘the lean streak’ I had at Fort Dela­ware.”

“May 10th [1862]. The events that have transpired since the first have been too extensive and important to attempt to record them here . I will have to leave them to memory to keep. Much of toil, weary marching, sleepless nights and hard fighting has fallen to the lot of this army since it left Yorktown. By the Gracious Providence of God I am here sound and unhurt. While I am preserved from the dangers of camps and the battlefields , sad news comes to me from home. Intelligence has come to me that I have lost a dear, much-beloved brother [Rev. John Phillips]

Oh, how distressingly sad it is to be so completely cut off from home that I cannot know only perchance whether loved ones there live and are well or laid low by disease and death . Fondly had I cherished hope that I would meet that beloved brother again, but death hath separated us. Thus have I seen one of my fondest earthly hopes decay. The next stroke may remove me from those who will be left behind . Yet how consoling it is to think of meeting him in Heaven. There we shall know no separation. It is the sacred hope of meeting my friends in Heaven if not on earth that animates my soul and nerves my arm to withstand the temptations of life around me, endure the afflictions of the soldier and willingly risk my life on the battlefield. This life is full of desperations and dangers, full of sorrow and grief, but in the next oh how happy all shall be who while here love God and keep His commandments!”

– DAVID L. PHILLIPS

Fort Delaware

pay records
May 1863 Muster

During the Battle of Fredricsburg, the 7th Tennessee held there ground against Gen. George Mead’s division despite having 2 regiments to their left break and run. Pennsylvania regiments poured through the large gap in their line. The 7th was now taking fire from 3 directions. Ammunition ran low on both sides and brutal hand to hand combat followed. There were at least two Pennsylvania soldiers that were from David’s grandfathers birthplace in Allegheny County, PA. I am researching to see if they were cousins of his. One is named David C. Philips, and was with the 5th Pennsylvania Infantry. February 2, 1863 David was promoted to 3rd Lieutenant.

In Robert E. Lee’s masterpiece Battle of Chancellorsville, the 7th was sent straight up the middle of the assault. May 3, 1863 after the Battle of Chancellorsville he made 2nd. Lt.

David Phillips was captured again at Gettysburg on July 3, 1863, during Pickett’s Charge. What was left of the 7th made it all the way to The Angle in the ill fated assault on Cemetery Hill. (Union muster records conflict with this capture date. One is July 1, 1863 and the other is July 3 at Gettysburg).

He was transferred from prison at Ft. McHenry, to Ft. Delaware, to Johnson’s Island and to Point Lookout for exchange on March 14, 1865. Sometime between his arrival at City Point and the surrender at Appomattox he must have slipped away before being able to re-join the regiment. He reported to Federal authorities in Charlotte, NC, May 1, 1865, and took the Oath in Nashville on Aug 1, 1865.

Timeline:

The approximate route of the 7th Tennessee up to the Battle of Seven Pines.

“David returned to Wilson County broken in body. The brutal exposure,  long marches, starvation, particularly during his imprison­ment at several POW camps, had wrecked the physique one strong and stalwart. David had a sweetheart in Tennessee, to whom he refers several times in his diary. Probably his poor health was responsible for his never mar­rying. After the war he went back to his old profession of school teaching. He sought vainly to regain his lost health, but the ravages of the war were too great.”

The “White Plague” (typically from tuberculosis and other diseases, that consumed 7.5% of the prison population) took root in the body that had marched cour­ageously under the Stars and Bars, and on May 18, 1869, the loyal brave heart was stilled.” David is buried in the Phillips Cemetery near Watertown on Bass Road. Ironically, it also holds four members of the 40th Tennessee USCI (United States Colored Infantry).

‘The Phillips Family History’ by Harry Phillips • Published by The Lebanon Democrat 1935

7th Regiment, Tennessee Infantry CSA

OVERVIEW:

1APR1839 – 18MAY1869

7th Infantry Regiment completed its organization at Camp Trousdale, Sumner County, Tennessee, in May, 1861, and in July, moved to Staunton, Virginia. The men were raised in DeKalb, Smith, Sumner, and Wilson counties. It participated in Lee’s Cheat Mountain Campaign and for a time served under General T.J. Jackson. Later it was assigned to General S.R. Anderson’s, Hatton’s, Archer’s, and McComb’s Brigade. It fought with the Army of Northern Virginia from Seven Pines to Cold Harbor, then was involved in the long Petersburg siege south of the James River and the Appomattox Campaign. This regiment reported 72 casualties during the Seven Days’ Battles, 34 at Cedar Mountain, 26 at Second Manassas, and 38 at Fredericksburg. It lost 11 killed and 45 wounded at Chancellorsville, and forty-six percent of the 249 engaged at Gettysburg. The unit surrendered 6 officers and 41 men. Its commanders were Colonels John A. Fite, John F. Goodner, and Robert Hatton; Lieutenant Colonels John K. Howard and S.G. Shepard; and Major William H. Williamson.

A great book about the 7th Tennessee is The 7th Tennessee Infantry in the Civil War: A History and Roster, William Thomas Venner on Goodreads.

Find A Grave Site

*probable Harmon Luster Henderson who later served with Forrest’s 3rd Cavalry Regiment Co. D

** Rev. John Phillips never joined. He died of unknown causes in April of 1862.

360º Virtual Tour of Lt. David L. Phillips gravesite and other family cemeteries in the area:

Recommended Reading:

Phillips Family History: A Brief History of the Phillips Family, Beginning with the Emigration From Wales, and a Detailed Genealogy of the Descendants … Pioneer Citizens of Wilson County, Tenn.

#7thtennessee #civilwar

Post script 6 January 2019: I found this (lebanon_herald) in the TN State Archives the other day. From around 1858 to 1878, there were only 2 days of Newspapers from Lebanon. Here is October 21, 1865 (the other paper was the 28th).

I am pretty sure this is our David Phillips. His friend Archie Norris (they served in the 7th TN, Co. K and mentioned several times in Davids diary) is mentioned, as well as Thomas Waters (Shelah’s brother).

 

Hospital N0. 8

 

Nashville Civil War Hospital

 Virtual Tour of the Church

The Downtown Presbyterian Church

Revised: 13 JAN 2016

1st-church

154 5th Ave N, Nashville, TN 37219

This Church was one of many buildings used in Nashville as a hospital, during the Union occupation of the city in the American Civil War. It was designated Hospital No. 8 and housed 206 beds. The basement was used to board horses for the U.S. Army.  As Old First Presbyterian Church it is designated a National Historic Landmark. The current building was built in 1848, but the instittution dates back to 1816 with two prior structures that burned.

A very unique Egyptian Revival Architecture style Church. – wikipedia

“Presbyterians have worshiped in Nashville since 1814. In that year, the First Presbyterian Church of Nashville built their first structure. After the Battle of New Orleans, the State of Tennessee presented General Andrew Jackson with a ceremonial sword on the front steps of the church. It survived until a fire destroyed it in 1832.

Rebuilding in that year, on the same site, the second building hosted the Inauguration of James K. Polk as Governor of Tennessee. That building burned down in 1848. The congregation then hired the Philadelphia architect William Strickland, who was in Tennessee to design and supervise the construction of the Tennessee State Capitol building, to design the present building.

During the Civil War, the building was seized by the United States government, and used as a hospital. Receiving reparations after the war”… read more

A great book about the Church history is First Church: A History of Nashville First Presbyterian Church – Three-volume Set available on Amazon. First Church – A History of Nashville First Presbyterian Church, Volume 3: 1955-2000

See a 360 virtual tour of Hospital No. 8 in panorama. The Nashville Church is available for private tours. Check their website for more information.

Virtual Tour of the Church

#battleofnashville #church #hospital