Another charging Barksdale


Seems unlikely Gen. B would lead a charge with his hat, as this painting by Western artist Gary Lynn Roberts has it. But there have been other fanciful notions about him. More troubling would be his rather short hair on the sides while thick on the top. Most contemporary remarks on his charge have his long white hair billowing, and we know he was bald on top without his toupee, which he was unlikely to have worn then, even if it would have stayed on.

About Dick Stanley

Retired Texas daily newspaperman
This entry was posted in Barksdale's Mississippi Brigade, Battles: Gettysburg, Gen. William Barksdale, The Commanders and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Another charging Barksdale

  1. Terrie says:

    I was moved to tears to read your amazing book “The Bloody Thirteenth” which chronicled my grandfather’s CSA service in the 13th Regiment, Newton Rifles MS INF. You did a remarkable job piecing together a gripping story of the 13th from the diaries of his comrades and telling the epic conditions that this Regiment endured during the War between the States. As I read page after page in your book, I was transported back in time to each battle field my ancestor trod and fought for a cause he held so dear. Praise to you for so accurately portraying what these men sacrificed for the love of their country. Reading military records from ancestor did not reveal what his Regiment encountered during the War. It wasn’t until I read your book that I grasped the true signifance of what it meant for my gggranddather to be one of the few men left in his rag-tag and diminished Regiment at the conclusion of the war. Hats off to you for painting this picture for me. I now know why he answered the first call that went out for volunteers from Newton County, MS in 1861 and remained till the end of the War. Thank you for including the account of my great-great grandfather’s Newton Rifles Company comrade, who said, “many of our boys were noble heroes, have fallen a willing sacrifice in their country’s cause, while others wear the wooden leg or empty sleeve; but others yet remain a small remnant of as brave and patriotic an army as ever trod the earth to avenge the loss of our comrades by emulating their devotion and heroism in the cause that deserved if it may not achieve success. It is sweet and glorious to die for one’s country.” Reading this statement from his comrade, a man my gggrandfather fought side-by-side with, helped me to know the type of man my gggrandfather had been. I am eternally grateful for you publishing “The Bloody Thirteenth” book and now, as I graze upon the photo I have of my great-great grandfather, John Alexander Patterson, Sgt. 13th Regiment, Newton Rifles/Co. D. MS INF- I know the incredible determination he had to live and die for “Dixie.”

    • Dick Stanley says:

      Thank you for the comment, Terrie. I’m glad you enjoyed the book. According to Grady Howell’s roster, your ancestor was a 1st Sergeant, having risen from private and corporal. According to Jess McLean’s history, John Alexander Patterson also was at one point a “color corporal,” meaning he carried the battle flag. A dangerous chore. He was a farmer, age 19 and single when he enlisted at Decatur, northwest of Meridian, on March 23, 1861. Born in South Carolina.

      • Terrie says:

        Thank you Dick! Yes, besides being first a Private and Sergeant, John has the job of the color guard, which was a quite a dangerous job indeed. In honor of his heroic service, I chose to become the Custodian of Flags in my heritage organization. John will be honored at a Memorial Service in April and thanks to your book, I can tell an amazing story about his Regiment when I speak about his service. John and his 4 brothers enlisted for MS, two of which enlisted in the Newton Rifles with him and the others for the 2nd Regiment, Cav. I am working on proving that 2 additional brothers of John also served for the 2nd Reg– but unfortunately, their military records only use their initials. But, I am not going to give up, especially since one died during the war and has become the forgotten solider leaving no heir behind. That would be 7 Patterson brothers fighting for MS. God Bless people like you who document these men’s service and provide information about other sources to refer to.

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