The 12th Louisiana Infantry
by R. Hugh Simmons

Copyright registered with the Library of Congress. This material may not be copied or used for any purpose without the express written permission of the author. 

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Company H 

August 1861 to May 1862
12 Month Volunteers @ Camp Moore

Farmer Rangers
Natchitoches Parish

Last Updated:  December 01, 2009

Company M1  

May 1862 to April 1865
For 3 Years or the Duration of the War

The Farmer Rangers were recruited in Natchitoches Parish and reported to Camp Moore, Louisiana during July of 1861. They were enrolled as 12 month volunteers on August 13, 1861 in the Twelfth Regiment, Louisiana Volunteers and Benajah D. Owen was elected Captain of the company. A minimum strength company consisted of 1 captain, 3 lieutenants, a 1st sergeant (sometimes called an orderly sergeant), four sergeants,  four corporals, and a minimum of 64 privates. The Farmer Rangers enrolled 79 men at Camp Moore, just two more than the minimum needed.

Captain Owen [his name appears as Benjamin Dott Owen in family records] was a 38 year old cotton planter and school teacher from southwestern Natchitoches Parish.  After the company had settled in at Columbus, Kentucky, Captain Owen returned home on furlough to recruit additional men for the company. Examination of the roster below suggests that he was unsuccessful. The Confederate Conscription Act of April 1862 required all white male residents between the ages of 18 and 35 years to enroll in military service for three years or the duration of the war. All 12 month volunteer units were required to re-organize and re-enroll to meet this new requirement and the 12th Louisiana did so while at Fort Pillow, Tennessee in May of 1862.

Captain Owen was relieved from duty by special orders on May 14, 1862 two days after the re-organization and Lieutenant Angus C. Alexander was not promoted to Captain to replace him. My analysis of these records suggests that the Farmer Guards, now Company M, were below strength. Lieutenants Fuller and Johnston had resigned in late 1861 and returned home to serve in other units. Twenty two of the privates had died, were discharged, or disappeared from the records during 1861.  Captain Owen was also ill in the spring of 1862 and family records indicate that he died on June 19, 1862 at home and was buried in a family cemetery plot at Bellwood in Natchitoches Parish. Typhoid fever took a horrific toll of the men of the 12th Louisiana during their three months stay at Fort Pillow.

The company was dissolved and merged with the Southern Sentinels, now Company C. That this was an "arranged marriage" is apparent from the fact that the officer and non-commissioned officer positions in the new company were split between the men from Natchitoches and Winn Parish Parishes. 1st Lieutenant Alexander, 2nd Lieutenant Sheppard, and 1st Sergeant William A. Dill were elected to these positions in the newly merged company. John Dixon and William Miles were re-elected Captain and 2nd Lieutenant respectively. The eight sergeant and corporal positions were divided equally among soldiers from the two parishes.

1st Lieutenant Alexander commanded Company C at the Battle of Champion Hill on May 16, 1863 and during the siege of Jackson in July. He was detailed to brigade staff positions during the 1864 campaigns, and rejoined the regiment in North Carolina after the Battle of Bentonville where he was elected Captain of Company C at Smithfield, NC on April 9, 1865. He surrendered the company.

COMPANY M1 ROSTER

The Compiled Military Service Records are organized alphabetically by regiment. 

This company roster was derived from the author's 12th Louisiana database

and is not available as such from the National Archives.

Copyright registered with the Library of Congress.

Data presented below:  (1) name as it appears in the Compiled Military Service Records with spelling variations, (2) highest rank held in the company, and (3) initial enrollment data. Camp Moore volunteers are designated by the letters CM. Volunteers who joined after the regiment left Camp Moore are designated by the year of their enrollment.

 

Captain

Owen, Benajah D.

CM

1st Lieutenant

Alexander, Angus C.

CM

Fuller, William M.

CM

2nd Lieutenants

Johnson, George T.

CM

Sheppard, John L. P.

CM

 

1st Sergeant

Dill, William A.

CM

Sergeants

Erington, Francis M.

CM

Gilbert, Thomas B.

CM

Mathews, Flavious J.

CM

Sheppard, Hardy H.

CM

Corporals

Campbell, Peter L.

CM

Dewberry, James M.

CM

Dowden, James A.

CM

Dowden, Shelton P.

CM

Ellzey, William F.

CM

Privates

Adams, John L.

CM

Kimball, James J. [Kemble, J.G.]

CM

Allen, Thomas

61

Little, Jesse

CM

Amiker, John W.

CM

Lolly, Joseph

CM

Bolton, George W.

CM

Low, Thomas J.

CM

Broadway, John

CM

Lowery, William M.

CM

Bryan, Henry M.[Bryant, H.M.]

CM

McCaskill, John

CM

Bullard, James L.

CM

McCaskill, William Y. [McCakle]

CM

Burkett, William J. [Berket]

61

McNeely, John F.

CM

Bush, Edmond A.

CM

Means, Christopher

CM

Bush, James C.

CM

Mims, Henry J.

CM

Bush, William C.

CM

Murphy, William D.

CM

Byrd, George P.

CM

Parker, George W.

CM

Campbell, Earnest

CM

Powell, Thomas

CM

Carroll, Joseph N.

CM

Prothro, Joseph

CM

Crippin, James W.

CM

Readhimer, William W.

CM

Crump, Samuel D.

CM

Reynolds, John

CM

Crump, William L.

CM

Richardson, Lewis L.

CM

Defee, James W.

CM

Robinson, James B

CM

Erington, Albert G. B. [Albert D.]

CM

Royston, John C.

CM

Farris, Mordecai D.

CM

Rush, William S.

CM

Farris, Samuel R.

CM

Scott, William H.

CM

Flanagan, James M. [Madison]

CM

Sheppard, James O. A.

CM

Flanigan, Andrew J.

CM

Tanner, Henry C.

CM

Fleming, Charles B.

CM

Tanner, Thomas M.

CM

Fuller, John

CM

Thomas, George

CM

Garrett, Absalom M. [Garrott]

CM

Thomas, John F.

62

Gilmore, George F.

CM

Thomas, Jonathan

CM

Gouch, Francis P. (Franklin)

CM

Thompson, Paraham

CM

Hamill, George W.

CM

Vowells, Hamilton G.

CM

Hardiman, Archibald

CM

Whitfield, John B.

CM

Hodge, James H.

CM

Williams, Stephen T.

CM

Kimball, Andrew J. [Kimbell]

CM

Worley, Charles S.

CM

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LSU Class of 1965.  Geaux Tigers!!

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