Bourland in North Texas and Indian Territory During the Civil War: Fort Cobb, Fort Arbuckle & the Wichita Mountains

by Patricia Adkins-Rochette



Volume II.  Appendix


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    The focus of this study is the Civil War in the area from the Wichita Mountains to Fort Cobb to Fort Arbuckle and from the South Canadian River to the Red River, but first the Civil War events of North Texas had to be outlined.

    Colonel James Bourland organized a regiment for border protection by placing his men up and down Red River.  He was undoubtedly one of the most important figures in North Texas and Southern Indian Territory during the Civil War.  Part of Bourland's sphere of influence extended from Fort Cobb to Fort Arbuckle to Fort Washita plus the area along the Red River, that was protected by the 7th, 8th, 9th, 14th, 15th, and 20th, and 21st Texas Militia Brigades.  Most of Bourland’s Border Regiment Cavalry was taken from and coordinated with the 21st Brigade until the summer of 1865.


Texas State Troops (TST)


    This study includes the transcript of existing primary references -- including misspellings -- found in the Texas Library and Archives that pertain to the militia organizations of the Texas counties that border the Red River, however some records are designated by their "brigade" in lieu of "county;" therefore, it is essential that the brigades be defined.  On December 25, 1861 the Texas Legislature divided the state into 33 militia brigade districts for the purpose of organizing Texas State Troops (TST) or Texas Militia (TM) for local defense under the command of the Governor of Texas, not the Confederacy.  Each district was ordered by law to form a brigade of volunteers within its borders. These volunteers were not allowed to go outside Texas state boundaries as part of the Confederate Army but were allowed to exit to rendezvous or in hot pursuit of marauding Indians.  Thus they were home guards only.  The State of Texas provided regiments for service in the Provisional Army of the Confederate States (P.A.C.S.).  CSA Brig-General H. E. McCulloch had only Texas State Troops in March, 1864 per the March 13, 1864 entry of Volume I.

    Initially, the militia members were all volunteer with the goal of protecting the local communities from marauding Indians and jayhawkers; and of course, after February 1861 many of the militia members dropped out to join the regular Confederate States Army — about three-fourths of the Texas militia enrollment went to the regular Confederate Army.  Militia members, ages 18-40, were then drafted to refill the ranks depleted by the exodus to the Confederate Army. By 1863 militia members 18-45 were drafted while some men older than 45 volunteered.


Bourland’s Regiment and the Confederacy

        At the request of the Confederacy, the State of Texas was reorganized and then funded by the Confederacy.  On March 1, 1864, six (6) new military brigades, replaced the 33-brigade organization.  Since Bourland’s Regiment was accepted into the Confederacy on March 1, 1864, it was no longer responsible for preventing attacks from the marauding Indians on the white settlers on the Texas northwestern frontier, but continued nevertheless.  The Confederacy would pay for Bourland’s Regiment to combat the Union Jayhawkers but not the marauding Indians.   CSA President Jefferson Davis had been the U.S. Secretary of War under President Franklin Pierce (1853-1857) and knew the cost of keeping one-fifth of the U.S. Army in posts on the Texas frontier.

         The Confederate Army enrolled 480 members of the Confederate Brush Battalion on November 6, 1863 maybe at Oxford Lake which was probably in Collin County, Texas. The Brush Battalion is extensively addressed in Volume I and Appendix K of Volume II.   (see vIIppA-337 to A-340.)

        Stand Watie’s Cherokee Mounted Volunteer CSA Regiment was attached on February 5, 1864 to Bourland’s TST Regiment.   Earlier John Jumper’s Seminole Mounted Volunteers CSA Regiment had been attached to Stand Watie’s Cherokee Volunteer CSA Regiment, then on December 20, 1863 Jumper’s Seminole Volunteer CSA Regiment was attached to Bourland’s TST Regiment.

East Texans Recruited for the Protection of the North and West Frontier


        Most of the militias formed in the 20th and 21st Brigades after January 1864 are listed in Appendix J and comprised William Quayle’s command, the 1st Frontier District Regiment, charged with protecting of the northwestern Texas frontier. That is, most of the pre-1864 militia listings of the 20th and 21st Brigade are found in Appendices H and I, but the post-1864 militias of the same counties are found in Appendix J.   Some of the militias formed in late 1863 and 1864 in the brigades along the Red River were sent to the 21st Brigade as pointed out in the 7th Brigade’s (Bowie, Cass, and Marion Counties) Colonel M. D. K. Taylor’s September 24, 1863 letter: "I mustered in to the State Service those present for the 21st District and turned them over to the Major commanding the Brigade."  (see the "East Texas Recruits Sent to North and West Texas Index".)


Seven Militia Brigades Comprising Thirty-four Counties


        The introductions for Appendices C, D, E, F, G, H, and I list the known commissioned officers of the of the existing 1861-1864-era records plus the correspondence of the 7th, 8th, 9th, 14th, 15th, 20th, and 21st Militia Brigades, respectively.  A comparison of the existing militia listings of the rank-and-file with the commissioned-officers listings shows that about 15 percent of the 1861 Texas militia records of these brigades are missing, while about 85 percent of the 1862 records are missing, but fortunately only about 20 percent of the 21st Brigade militia listings of 1863 and 1864 are missing.  Most of these records were found in the Texas State Library and Archives that houses records sent by local residents to the Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office and the Texas Governor’s Office in Austin, Texas.  This study is an effort to transcribe and organize all of the available Civil War records from the thirty-four (34) counties of the seven (7) militia brigades.


Reconstructed Militia Records


        About 30 percent of the 1861-1865 militia records are missing.  Contemporaneous sources have been scoured for "hints" in identifying militia captains since the records in the Texas State Library and Archives are filed by "surnames of militia captains."  Several "reconstructed" militia listings were found; for example, the Pace’s Militia in the 14th Brigade, on page A-149 that was published in a 1929 newspaper article.

        The terms "beat" and "precinct" were used interchangeably in the 1860-era in North Texas records.  Usually in northeastern Texas, each county voting precinct enlisted the men of their area, got together to elect officers, drilled for a few hours and then went home.  Whereas, on the Texas north and west frontier, the militia were always on-call, and at any point in time about one-fourth were on scouting duty.  Included in some of these militia records is the amount of the soldiers' pay.


Expensive Writing Materials


        The commanders of the some of the militias were hard pressed to keep militia rolls, or their rolls updated.   Complicating the maintenance of militia records was the scarcity and the prohibitive expense of writing materials.  In emergencies, some wrote on cloth.


 Patricia Adkins-Rochette        03/10/2008               

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