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Rebel Units and Commanders at the Battle of Hatcher’s Run: Confederate Cavalry


SOPO Editor’s Note: This is the fourth in a series of five guest posts by Dr. Nigel Lambert, a semi-retired British biochemist with a lifelong interest in the American Civil War.  Nigel has worked closely with Bryce Suderow over the first half of 2021 thoroughly researching the Confederate Order of Battle at the Battle of Hatcher’s Run, February 5-7, 1865.  Read on and you will soon see why this is such a difficult task.  I want to thank Dr. Lambert for his generous decision to publish this series of articles here at the Siege of Petersburg Online.  This article is the copyrighted work of Nigel Lambert and may not be reproduced without his express written consent. All rights reserved.


Rebel Units and Commanders at the Battle of Hatcher’s Run.

Article 3: The Rebel Cavalry Division

By Dr Nigel Lambert, March 2022


This article (number 3 in a series of 3) explores the Rebel organization of the Army of Northern Virginia (ANV) cavalry division as pertaining to the battle of Hatcher’s Run (February 5-7th 1865). As February dawned, this division was composed of three brigades under the commands of: Rufus Barringer, Richard Beale and James Dearing. These units will be explored in turn, highlighting areas of contention.


“Rooney” Lee’s Cavalry Division



          Barringer (Brigade)             Beale (Brigade)                    Dearing (Brigade)


Maj-Gen W.H.F. “Rooney” Lee’s Cavalry Division

With the arrival of 1865, the cavalry situation within the ANV was dire. Horses were in short supply and with the army besieged around Petersburg and Richmond forage for what horses it had was limited. The army could barely feed and clothe its soldiers. Action was needed. As of 19th January, the ANV Cavalry Corps under the influential General Wade Hampton was disbanded. Hampton with Butler and his cavalry division were sent to the Carolinas to join the fight against Sherman’s advancing Federal Army. This left Gen. Rooney Lee’s division as the sole cavalry operating within the ANV. Butler left his horses for Rooney Lee’s troopers, in the knowledge that mounts and forage were relatively plentiful in the more spacious Carolinas1. Thus, leading up to the battle of Hatcher’s Run, the reconnaissance, screening and raiding functions that typified the role of civil war cavalry was in the sole hands of Rooney Lee and his troopers, a force of around 3,000 officers and men2

Maj-Gen. William Henry Fitzhugh “Rooney” Lee was the second son of Lt-Gen Robert E. Lee, the ANV commander. Rooney had a distinguished civil war cavalry career, notably serving with the legendary JEB Stuart. In April 1864 he was promoted to Major-Gen. and took command of the division which he led to the end of the war3. The weather at the start of February 1865 was particularly wintery and forage for horses in short supply around Petersburg, hence, Rooney Lee and his troopers had moved to Belfield some 40 miles south of Petersburg both for foraging purposes and to protect the vital supply line there4.


The unit composition and commanders within the cavalry division around the time of the battle is generally consistent. What is more problematic is the presence of Rooney Lee’s cavalry at the battle of Hatcher’s Run itself. As shall be revealed in this article, a recurrent theme is the paucity of information on Rebel cavalry at the battle. In some well researched and frequently cited accounts of the battle there is simply NO mention of Rebel cavalry at all5. Other sources, clearly place Rooney’s troopers at the battle and being central to the fighting along the Vaughan Road on February 6th. However, even these accounts are very brief and if included at all on a Hatcher’s Run battle-map, the Rebel cavalry are depicted as one divisional icon; I know of no map that situates the specific cavalry brigades6.

The three brigades will now be considered in turn and the evidence considered for their participation in the battle of Hatcher’s Run (February 5-7th 1865).


Barringer’s Brigade                                                                                                Brig-Gen. Rufus Barringer


1st NC Cav (9th NC Regiment) – Col. William Cheek

2nd NC Cav (19th NC Regiment) – Col. William Roberts

3rd NC Cav (41st NC Regiment) – Lt-Col. Roger Moore

5th NC Cav (63rd NC Regiment) – Col. James McNeill


Rufus Barringer was a colorful character; he had led a very distinguished war career in the cavalry and rose through the ranks at pace. He was promoted to Brig-Gen. on June 6th 1864 and assigned command of North Carolina’s cavalry brigade, a position he held until his capture on April 3rd 1865.  After being captured, he had the notoriety of being the first Rebel general to meet President Abraham Lincoln. Barringer currently has a website devoted to him, run by a descendent, who also published an award-winning biography about the general. There is NO mention of the battle of Hatcher’s Run in this, or other Barringer biographies7. The composition of the brigade and regimental commanders is consistent between the “Civil War in the East” (CWE) database and the end of January 1865 Rebel Inspection Report; the latter noted the brigade strength as 1,356 cavalrymen (or 1,850 depending on what data one choses)8. Soon after Hatcher’s Run, Col. William Roberts was promoted to Brig-General on February 23rd 1865 and took over Dearing’s Brigade (see below), following Dearing’s transfer to Rosser’s cavalry division in The Shenandoah Valley. At 23 years old, this made William Roberts the youngest Rebel general in the entire war9.



Brig-Gen. Rufus Barringer
Col. William Roberts; following Hatcher’s Run he was promoted and given command of Dearing’s Brigade





Many civil war cavalry units had two names, a state regimental name and a cavalry name. This was the case for North Carolinian cavalry units. For example, the 9th NC State regiment was the first cavalry regiment formed in North Carolina and hence it was called the 1st NC cavalry. This was Barringer’s former regiment and was claimed to be JEB Stuart’s favorite regiment10.

The accounts of these regiments in Clark’s five-volume anthology of first-hand accounts for most North Carolinian regiments reveals nothing about the Hatcher’s Run fight. Interestingly, they are listed under their regimental state name11. The account for the 1st NC Cavalry is actually penned by Barringer himself and does not mention the battle of Hatcher’s Run at all. The relevant account for the 2nd NC Cavalry is penned by Col. Roberts and again does not mention the battle, although there is a detailed discussion of the Belfield / Stony Creek Raid in December 1864. The 3rd NC Cavalry account also fails to mention Hatcher’s Run. Perhaps most intriguing of all is the narrative for the 5th NC Cavalry. This was penned by a Private Paul Means and is a very detailed account of the unit. There are several pages plus a map, discussing the Belfield / Stony Creek Raid (December 9-11th 1864) which from an overall civil war perspective was a smaller affair than the Hatcher’s Run battle12. There is then a similarly detailed account of the battle of Chamberlain Run (31st March 1865) including the deaths of Col. McNeill and his second -in-command. There is also a copy of a letter from Robert E. Lee written just after the battle of Hatcher’s Run to the Rebel Government complaining about lack of supplies for his soldiers; it even alludes to the recent battle. However, there is simply NO mention of the 5th NC cavalry taking part in the battle at all. Other accounts for these regiments also report nothing for the battle13.

I have located a regimental history (of the 2nd NC Cav) that does indeed refer to the battle of Hatcher’s Run14. The account albeit brief, focusses upon the poor state of the troops, the harsh winter weather and the grueling march for both men and horses from Belfield to Hatcher’s Run on February 5th / 6th 1865. Again, Robert E. Lee’s letter to the Rebel government complaining about the lack of provisions is recorded. What is also reported is that the regiment suffered no casualties during February 5-7th. Indeed, research has uncovered that the entire brigade suffered but two casualties (1W and 1M) for 5th – 7th February15.

Based upon the consistent non-accounts and miniscule casualties, the rational conclusion is that whatever troopers from Barringer’s Brigade reached Hatcher’s Run from Belfield, they were not heavily engaged in the battle.


Beale’s Brigade                                                                                                      Brig-Gen. Richard Beale


9th Va Cav. – Lt-Col. Thomas Waller

10th Va Cav. – Lt-Col. Robert Caskie16

13th Va Cav. – Col. Jefferson Phillips17


Richard Beale was a highly regarded Rebel cavalier; his exploits had frequently found favor with the legendary JEB Stuart and he had accordingly risen through the ranks during the war to become colonel of the 9th Va Cav18. His rank, as of early February 1865 is slightly complicated. In August 1864, brigade commander John R. Chambliss was killed in action. Col. J. Lucius Davis (10th Va Cav) as the senior officer took command of the brigade. Davis (a cousin of the Rebel president) went on leave towards the end of October and resigned on February 2nd 1865 frustrated that he hadn’t been promoted to Brig-General19. Meanwhile, according to Beale’s memoirs, he took over brigade command on 17th October 186420. His promotion papers got misplaced and his promotion only came through on February 6th 1865, but was effective from January 6th 186521. The brigade Inspection Report for January 28th 1865 has Beale listed as a Brig-Gen. and the strength of the brigade was recorded as 958 cavalrymen (or 1,247)22.


The composition of the brigade and regimental commanders presented above is consistent with both the CWE database and the Rebel Inspection Report for end of January 186523. However, for the period December 1864 – April 1865 one highly cited source has Beale’s brigade being commanded by a Capt. Samuel Burt. Records show that up until late February, Richard Beale was still in command and one has to assume he was commanding at Hatchers Run24.

Sources locating this brigade at Hatcher’s Run are more plentiful than for Barringer’s Brigade, just discussed. Beale’s own memoir devotes one sentence to the battle and reports25 that: “Much of the winter of 1864-1865 was spent in comfortable winter quarters near Belfield Station, each of the squadrons taking its turn at picket service on a line about 30 miles from camp. They were on the right of our infantry at Hatcher’s Run in the month of February 1865 and in an engagement on the 5th of that month suffered considerably” (my added emphasis). One source puts the brigade casualties for Hatcher’s Run at: 2 killed, 8 wounded and 16 missing26.


Gen. Beale had three sons serving in his former 9th Va cavalry regiment, one of which, Lieutenant George W. Beale, wrote a book about his war experiences. This account has a chapter devoted to the battle of Hatcher’s Run27. However, there is little discussion of the major fighting on February 6th, it only reports: “… Lee’s Division of Cavalry marched on the night of the fifth [February] 40 miles in order to reach this scene of action, and on the sixth were engaged with the Federal cavalry escorting Warren.” He then goes on to describe events on the following day (the final day of the battle), where he was seriously wounded and two comrades either side of him, killed in a sharp fight. I find it curious that his father’s memoirs mention nothing of this event. A more recent and acclaimed history of the 9th Va cavalry28 also briefly mentions their involvement at Hatcher’s Run, it reports: “When the Federal V Corps made a turning movement to Hatcher’s Run, in early February, the 9th Va Cavalry marched 40 miles overnight to reach the site by the morning of February 6th. The regiment drove in some skirmishers but recoiled from the volleys of an entrenched line and suffered considerably”.

A modern history of the 10th Va Cav mentions the unpleasant march from Belfield to Hatcher’s Run, but nothing of the battle itself29. Accounts for the 13th Va Cav are more illuminating30. It appears that elements of this regiment were on picket duty in early February, away from the Division camped at Belfield. Consequently, they were involved in some short but sharp fighting of February 5th to hold back the Federal advance. It is reported that the regiment lost 13 men captured at Hatcher’s Run on this day. No mention is made of the fighting on the subsequent two days.

In conclusion, the organizational structure of this brigade for early February 1865 appears highly reliable. Significant evidence exists to demonstrate that the units were engaged at the battle of Hatcher’s Run. However, given that the brigade commander reports that “they suffered considerably” at the battle, one may wonder why more words were not written on the subject in subsequent memoirs and biographies?





Brig-Gen. Richard Beale Post war photo


Brig-Gen. James Dearing


Dearing’s Brigade                                                                                                     Brig-Gen. James Dearing


8th Ga Cav – Col Joel Griffin31

4th NC Cav (59th NC Regiment) – Col Dennis Ferebee

16th Battalion NC Cav (75th NC Regiment) – Lt Col John Edelin32

Graham’s Va Battery33 – Capt. Edward W. Graham


James Dearing was yet another colorful character. Formerly an artillery commander, he was promoted to Brig-Gen. on April 29th 1864 and assigned to a cavalry brigade which initially fought in North Carolina. Strangely, his promotion never seems to have been ratified by the Rebel government leading to confusion over his formal rank34. From May 1864 onwards, he was always referred to as Brig-Gen. in official reports and private letters. He had a quasi-independent command, operating with merit, across several commands around Petersburg during the summer and autumn of 1864. He and his longstanding friend Gen. Rosser, were constantly conspiring for him to be moved to Rosser’s command (in the Shenandoah Valley), but Robert E. Lee, kept refusing. Gen. Beauregard also requested that Dearing be promoted to Maj-Gen. and lead his cavalry division in the west, this also got rejected. While Dearing was on furlough visiting his family and new baby, between late December 1864 and early January 1865, Robert E. Lee transferred him to General Butler’s Cavalry Division. However, in mid-January Lee sent Butler’s Division to the Carolinas (see page 1 above) and Lee decided to keep Dearing around Petersburg, so he transferred him to Rooney Lee’s Cavalry Division. This was the situation around the time of the battle of Hatcher’s Run35.

Soon after the battle, Dearing got his wish and he was transferred to Rosser’s command in the Valley to eventually take command of the renown Laurel Brigade36. On February 23rd 1865 Col. William Roberts was promoted to Brig-Gen. and took over Dearing’s brigade (see page 2 above). In the last days of the war Rosser and Dearing returned to the desperate fighting following the Federal breakthrough at Petersburg37. A detailed MA Thesis on Gen. Dearing, that was turned into a book, does not mention the February 1865 battle of Hatcher’s Run38.

The above regimental composition of the brigade is consistent across both the CWE database for January 1865 and the end of January 1865 Inspection Report, which recorded the brigade strength at 710 cavalrymen and 69 artillerymen (or 1,055 “present for duty”)39. However, in Noah Trudeau’s well cited book40, for December 1864 to April 1865, it erroneously lists Gen. Dearing as being in Tom Rosser’s Division and hence, nowhere near Hatcher’s Run in February 1865. Trudeau lists Brig Gen. William Roberts as commander of this cavalry brigade. As I described above, Roberts only took over command in mid-February, after the battle of Hatcher’s Run.

The 8th Ga Cavalry was created by consolidating three Companies of the 20th Georgia Cavalry Battalion with seven companies of the 62nd Georgia Partisan Rangers commanded by Colonel Joel R. Griffin. The order to consolidate was originally issued in July 1864 but was not executed until October 1864. The 62nd had been assigned to Dearing’s Brigade in May 1864 and the newly formed 8th Ga Cav. commanded by Griffin, remained with Dearing41. I have found no record linking this regiment to the Hatcher’s Run battle.

There are some illuminating accounts for the 4th NC Cavalry for early February 1865. In one regimental account42 Hatcher’s Run is not included on a list of engagements the regiment took part in. Another regimental history43 reports that the regiment was performing picket duties in early February and on February 4th was entertained by a mock jousting competition arranged by Barringer’s Brigade. There is no mention of the battle on the following three days. It goes on to detail how regimental commander Col. Ferebee resigned his commission on March 3rd, piqued by William Roberts from Barringer’s Brigade, being promoted ahead of him and given command of Dearing’s Brigade. The regiment’s contribution (listed under its 59th NC State Regiment name) in Clark’s anthology44 makes no mention of the Battle of Hatcher’s Run, although it does discuss the fighting over the same area in October 1864. There are reports of all the command changes in February: Dearing going to Rosser and Robert’s taking over the brigade. Also, mentioned is the “retiring” of Col. Ferebee. According to records from the North Carolina Civil War & Reconstruction History Center45 the regiment suffered only one casualty (a captured trooper) for the whole of February 1865, and the battle of Hatcher’s Run in that month, is not listed as an incident on the regiment’s roster, whereas fairly minor skirmishes are included.

As well as being called the 75th NC Regiment, the 16th Battalion NC Cav were also latterly called the Confederate 7th Cavalry. They were formed in July 1864, by consolidating five NC companies of the 7th Confederate Cavalry Regiment, three NC companies of the 62nd Georgia Cavalry Regiment, and Company C of the 12th NC Cavalry Battalion46. Their regimental account in Clark’s anthology47 is chronologically muddled, however, Hatcher’s Run is at least on a list of battles the unit took part in, although no details are given. One source reports that the regiment lost one trooper captured in early February48.

Following a large Rebel cavalry and artillery re-organization on January 16th 1865, Rooney Lee’s Cavalry Division had attached to it, Lt.-Col. Roger Chew’s Horse Artillery.  At the time of the Hatcher’s Run battle this horse-artillery was composed of three units:

  • Washington (SC) Artillery commanded by Lt. Lindsley Halsey. This had formerly been the famed “Hart’s Battalion”, but since Major James Hart’s serious wounding on Oct 27th 1864, had been reorganized and commanded by Halsey49.
  • 2nd Stuart Virginia Artillery, otherwise known as “McGregor’s VA Battery” was commanded by Major William McGregor50.
  • Petersburg Virginia Horse Artillery, otherwise known as “Graham’s Va Battery” was commanded by Capt. Edward Graham. This unit typically operated with Dearing’s brigade and is included in the brigade’s end-of-January Inspection Report51.

There is limited evidence to suggest that some if not all of these horse-artillery units were active on February 6th and 7th at the Hatcher’s Run battle52.

In summary, there is virtually no documentary evidence describing Dearing’s cavalry at the battle of Hatcher’s Run. The battle is conspicuously absent from most personal and regimental narratives. What casualty data that is available, would also suggest that this brigade was only minimally involved at Hatcher’s Run.



Unlike the two previous articles on the Rebel Infantry Corps, the regimental composition and commanders constituting Rooney Lee’s cavalry division is generally consistent across accounts. What is problematic in this instance, is the lack of information situating many of the units at the battle of Hatcher’s Run. Only solid evidence exists for the presence of Beale’s Brigade. With the confusions in the Inspection Reports, even knowing the actual Divisional strength is problematic, either 3,093 or 4,152, depending on which values one choses. This is a sizeable disparity, especially considering that the standard estimate for all Rebel forces at the battle is around 14,00053.

  • Several highly regarded accounts of the battle do not mention Rebel cavalry activity at all; whereas other accounts clearly describe their presence.
  • Lengthy and reputable biographies of both Barringer and Dearing pointedly omit the battle. This could suggest that regarding these brigades, nothing of significance occurred during the battle.
  • Most of the Barringer / Dearing regimental histories do not discuss the battle.
  • The above conclusions are supported by the miniscule casualties reported for both Barringer’s and Dearing’s Brigades, which would suggest they were minimally engaged, at the most.
  • Only Beale and his regiments provide any serious acknowledgement of the battle. Yet we are left with a conundrum from Beale himself, when he reports that the brigade “suffered considerably” at the battle, but there is no further account anywhere to develop what sounds like a significant engagement. Beale also fails to acknowledge that his son was actually seriously wounded at the battle.
  • Until new material is uncovered, the role of Rooney Lee’s cavalry at Hatcher’s Run will remain shrouded in mystery.




Information about the photographs used and full details of the bold references are provided in the Introduction text along with “Acknowledgements”.


  1. 1. John Horn (1993) “The Petersburg Campaign” in which chapter 10 “The Battle of Hatcher’s Run” p199 -200; Samuel Martin (2001) “Southern Hero: Matthew Calbraith Butler: Confederate General, Hampton Red Shirt, and U.S. Senator” p 132-133; Mary Daughtry (2002) “Gray Cavalier”, p242-246; Hawks, C.S.A. Cavalry Corps January 1865 webpage, Cavalry Corps, Army of Northern Virginia, December 1864 (civilwarintheeast.com) .
  2. Sherrill, p412; reports the brigade strength at 2,800; whereas the end of Jan inspection report amounts to 3,039 men; NARA, (1973) M935, Roll 15, 1.P.58, 0339: Inspection Reports and Related Records Received By the Inspection Branch in the Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office.
  3. Mary Daughtry (2002) “Gray Cavalier: The Life and Wars of General W.H.F. “Rooney” Lee”.
  4. Richard Beale (1899), “History of the Ninth Virginia Cavalry, in the War Between the States” p147; Daniel Balfour (1986) “Thirteenth Virginia Cavalry” p42; Mary Daughtry (2002) “Gray Cavalier”, p242-246.

5.Trudeau p 312- 322; John Maass (2015) “The Petersburg and Appomattox Campaigns 1864-65” p40-42;  Perry Jamieson (2015) “Spring 1865: The Closing Campaigns of the Civil War”, p84-90; Jerry Korn (1987), “Pursuit to Appomattox” Time Life Series, p27-33; Bergeron p30-37, does have a Rooney Lee icon on a map, but there is no mention of Rebel cavalry in the text; Earl Hess (2009) “In the Trenches at Petersburg: Field Fortifications & Confederate Defeat”, p228-233, Rebel cavalry literally receive two words on p232, “ …. another fight took place along Vaughan Road, as Confederate cavalry and infantry advanced northward…”; Gen. Andrew Humphrey’s (1916) “Campaigns of the Civil War: The Virginia Campaign of ’64 and ’65”, p312-315.

  1. Bearss p200- 221 and includes a detailed battle-map on p207 with a Rooney Lee icon. There are few references to Rebel cavalry in the Official Records, see O.R. Vol 46, part 1, p253, 267; Sherrill, p413-14, but no mention of specific Rebel cavalry brigades; Harold Hand (2006) “One Good Regiment” p193; this Federal account refers to firing into the enemy and: “emptying a good many saddles”; William Locke (1868) “The Story of The Regiment”, p376. This is a history of the 11th Penn Infantry regiment and regarding the Hatcher’s Run fight it reports: “Meanwhile Gregg [Federal cavalry commander], on the left, pressed on flank and in rear by the rebel cavalry, was also driven from his defenses”. The issue has recently been addressed by myself in: Nigel Lambert & Bryce Suderow (2022) “The Battle of Hatcher’s Run: A Re-Appraisal” North and South Magazine, Series 2, Vol. 2, No. 5, p35-46.
  2. www.generalrufusbarringer.com; Sheridan R. Barringer (2016) “Fighting for General Lee: Confederate General Rufus Barringer and the North Carolina Cavalry Brigade”. Marvin Krieger (1979) Rufus Clay Barringer”, NCpedia (https://www.ncpedia.org); Sheridan “Butch” Barringer (2008), The General, published in “Confederate Cavalry”, Rantings of a Civil War Historian » Brig. Gen. Rufus Barringer (civilwarcavalry.com); Rufus Barringer, WiKi Rufus Barringer – Wikipedia.
  3. Hawks, William H.F. Lee’s Division January 1865 webpage, William H. F. Lee’s Division, Cavalry Corps, Army of Northern Virginia, January 1865 (civilwarintheeast.com) and NARA, (1973) M935, Roll 15, 2.P.58, 0355-57: Inspection Reports and Related Records Received By the Inspection Branch in the Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office. The accounting in the cavalry Inspection Reports is mystifying, while the cover records 1,356 men, the aggregate of column 11 (Present for Duty) is 1,850.

9.Neil Raiford (2006) “The 4th North Carolina Cavalry in the Civil War: A History and Roster”, p83-84; Military WiKi, “General William Roberts” – Wiki William Paul Roberts | Military Wiki | Fandom (wikia.org).

  1. 10. 1st North Carolina Cavalry Regiment Re-enactor website: 9th Regiment North Carolina State Troops / 1st North Carolina Cavalry International (1st-nc-cavalry.org).
  2. 11. Clark: 9th NC: vol 1, p438-39; 19th NC: vol 2, p105-107; 41st NC: vol 2, p782; 63rd NC: vol 3, p632-643.
  3. The Stony Creek Raid (petersburgsiege.org)

13.The National Park Service database account for the 1st NC cavalry does not mention Hatcher’s Run, Battle Unit Details – The Civil War (U.S. National Park Service) (nps.gov).  The “Carolana website”, 3rd NC Cavalry webpage 41st NC Regiment (3rd Cavalry) (carolana.com) has no mention of Hatcher’s Run; John Rigdon (2018) Historical Sketch & Roster of The 5th Regiment, North Carolina Cavalry, does not mention Hatcher’s Run; On the Thomas Legion website, Hatcher’s Run is not listed as a battle that the 1st NC or 2nd NC Cavalry took part in,   http://www.thomaslegion.net/1stnorthcarolinacavalryregimentbattlesandcasualties.htmlhttp://www.thomaslegion.net/2ndnorthcarolinacavalryregimentbattlesandcasualties.html  

  1. Roger Harrell (2011)“The 2nd North Carolina Cavalry”, p346-47.
  2. 15. Alfred Young, a recognized expert on civil war casualty records, Personal Communication (April 2021).
  3. Stephen Taylor (2015) Hoosier State Chronicles,The Hermit on the Banks of the Wabash | Hoosier State Chronicles: Indiana’s Digital Newspaper Program. Robert Caskie has an interesting back-story, which is captured in this article. After the war, he and his family travelled west and he set up a prosperous tobacco business, only for him to face financial ruin due to a law-suit back in Virginia. He travelled north to avoid both his creditors and family and in effect became a recluse under another name. He remained a hermit in the Wabash Valley until around 1910, having famously been rescued from a flood. In 1920, aged 90, he travelled to France and Switzerland and lived there for a period, before returning to the US, where we died in Philadelphia in 1928 aged 98. His other notoriety is that he attended the execution of John Brown in 1859 and it is claimed that he is the central figure in a famous civil war ambrotype image from that event, discovered in 1911 and used recently by Ken Burns.
  4. 17. Find a Grave website, COL Jefferson Curle Phillips (1821-1910) – Find A Grave Memorial.

18.Civil War WiKi, Richard L. T. Beale | Civil War Wiki | Fandom (wikia.org);  World Biographical Encyclopedia, Richard Beale (May 22, 1819 — April 21, 1893), American military, politician | World Biographical Encyclopedia (prabook.com) ; Find a Grave Memorial, Richard Lee Turberville Beale (1819-1893) – Find A Grave Memorial ; Richard Beale (1899), “History of the Ninth Virginia Cavalry, in the War Between the States”.

One event has particularly been linked to Richard Beale. In March 1864, he intercepted the Federal Kilpatrick – Dahlgren cavalry raid, capturing about 175 men and killed Dahlgren. Papers found upon Dahlgren’s person, revealing a design to burn Richmond and kill Rebel President Jefferson Davis and his Cabinet, were forwarded to the Rebel government. These controversial papers discovered by Beale’s troopers may have been a factor that influenced John Wilkes Booth in his decision to assassinate Abraham Lincoln.

  1. Colin Woodward (2016) “Who was Colonel James Lucius Davis?” Who was Colonel James Lucius Davis? – leefamilydigitalarchive (wordpress.com) ; Hawks, “10th Va Cavalry regiment webpage, History of the 10th Virginia Cavalry Regiment in the American Civil War (civilwarintheeast.com).
  2. 20. Richard Beale (1899), “History of the Ninth Virginia Cavalry, in the War Between the States” p146.
  3. World Biographical Encyclopedia, Richard Beale (May 22, 1819 — April 21, 1893), American military, politician | World Biographical Encyclopedia (prabook.com)
  4. 22. NARA, (1973) M935, Roll 15, 3.P.58, 0368: Inspection Reports and   Related Records Received By the Inspection Branch in the Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office. The usual discrepancy in the cavalry accounting between the cover figure and the “present for duty” figure.
  5. 23. Ibid 0368-0370; Hawks, William H.F. Lee’s Division January 1865 webpage, William H. F. Lee’s Division, Cavalry Corps, Army of Northern Virginia, January 1865 (civilwarintheeast.com).
  6. 24. Trudeau, p500, Organisation of Forces Appendix.
  7. Richard Beale (1899), “History of the Ninth Virginia Cavalry, in the War Between the States” p147.
  8. Alfred Young, a recognized expert on civil war casualty records, Personal Communication (April 2021).
  9. George Beale (1918) “A Lieutenant of Cavalry in Lee’s Army”, Chapter 32, p197-200.
  10. Robert Krick (1982) “Ninth Virginia Cavalry”, p43.
  11. Robert Driver (1993) “Tenth Virginia Cavalry” p69.
  12. 30. Daniel Balfour (1986) “Thirteenth Virginia Cavalry” p43; John Cooke (1867) “Wearing of the Gray; Being Personal Portraits, Scenes and Adventures of the War”, p553-564; Mary Daughtry (2002) “Gray Cavalier”, p242-246.
  13. 31. Col. Griffin was absent in December 1864 for no known reason and again took a leave of absence on February 17th for an indeterminant period. Schulte, 8th Ga Cavalry webpage, 8th Georgia Cavalry — The Siege of Petersburg Online (beyondthecrater.com).
  14. 32. John Edelin (from Maryland) had only taken over regimental command in January 1865. As someone from outside North Carolina, he does not appear to have been popular, and when he got captured on March 30th 1865, few in his command seemed to be upset. Clark, vol 4, 75th Regiment, p89; Schulte, 16th NC Battalion Cavalry webpage,16th North Carolina Battalion Cavalry — The Siege of Petersburg Online (beyondthecrater.com).
  15. Organized in April 1843 this artillery unit had a distinguished antebellum history. For example, it served as security during the trial and execution of John Brown. Taken from: “Graham’s Petersburg, Jackson’s Kanawha, and Lurty’s Roanoke Horse Artillery” by Robert H. Moore, II (1996).
  16. 34. Military WiKi, James Dearing | Military Wiki | Fandom (wikia.org) ; James Dearing – Wikipedia ;
  17. William Parker (1969) “Brigadier General James Dearing C.S.A.” MA Thesis, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, p71-74.
  18. 36. Ibid p75; William McDonald (1907) “A History of the Laurel Brigade”, p364.
  19. 37. The story surrounding Dearing’s demise is a well-documented topic. On April 6th during the Battle of High Bridge, Dearing was shot in a pistol fight with Federal Lt-Col. Theodore Read, Read died instantly and Dearing who was captured, died of his wounds on April 23rd, two weeks after the ANV surrender. Notwithstanding whether his promotion to Brig.-Gen. was formally ratified, Dearing has the claimed notoriety of being the last general to die from combat in the war. William Parker (1969) “Brigadier General James Dearing C.S.A.” MA Thesis, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, p77-81; Military WiKi, James Dearing | Military Wiki | Fandom (wikia.org).
  20. 38. William Parker (1969) “Brigadier General James Dearing C.S.A.” MA Thesis, Virginia Polytechnic Institute; William Parker (1990), General James Dearing, CSA (The Virginia Civil War Battles and Leaders Series).
  21. Hawks, William H.F. Lee’s Division January 1865 webpage, William H. F. Lee’s Division, Cavalry Corps, Army of Northern Virginia, January 1865 (civilwarintheeast.com); NARA, (1973) M935, Roll 15, 4.P.58, 0380-82: Inspection Reports and Related Records Received By the Inspection Branch in the Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office.  Again, we have a mis-match between the cover figures and the “Present for Duty” figures from column 11.
  22. 40. Trudeau, p500, Organisation of Forces Appendix.
  23. Hawks, 8th Georgia Cavalry webpage, History of the 8th Georgia Cavalry Regiment in the Civil War (civilwarintheeast.com) ; National Park Service, Confederate Georgia Troops, 62nd Georgia regiment, Battle Unit Details – The Civil War (U.S. National Park Service) (nps.gov); Research OnLine – Georgia 8th Cavalry Regiment, Research OnLine – Georgia 8th Cavalry Regiment.
  24. John Ridgon (2019) “Historical Sketch and Roster of the North Carolina 4th Cavalry Regiment”, Research OnLine – 4th Regiment, North Carolina Cavalry.
  25. 43. Neil Raiford (2006) “The 4th North Carolina Cavalry in the Civil War: A History and Roster”, p83-84. Wadesboro NC Argus Newspaper, Feb 23rd 1865.
  26. Clark, 59th NC Regiment, Vol 3, p466.
  27. 45. Cheri Todd Molter, Content Development Specialist, N.C. Civil War & Reconstruction History Center; Personal Communication, April 8th 2021.
  28. 46. Family Search, NC Civil War Confederate Cavalry Units, North Carolina Civil War Confederate Cavalry Units • FamilySearch,
  29. 47. Clark, 75th NC Regiment, vol 4, p87-89.
  30. 48. Alfred Young, Civil War casualty-data expert, Personal Communication.
  31. 49. Louise Pettus, “James F. Hart of Yorkville”, JAMES F. HART OF YORKVILLE (rootsweb.com); Schulte, Washington South Carolina Artillery (Hart’s SC Battery) webpage: Washington South Carolina Artillery (Hart’s SC Battery) — The Siege of Petersburg Online (beyondthecrater.com) ; West Virginia in the Civil War website, Chew’s Battery | West Virginia in the Civil War (wvcivilwar.com).



  1. 50. Schulte, 2nd Stuart Virginia Artillery webpage: 2nd Stuart Virginia Artillery (McGregor’s VA Battery) — The Siege of Petersburg Online (beyondthecrater.com); Robert J Trout (2008) “Memoirs of the Stuart Horse Artillery Battalion: Moorman’s and Hart’s Batteries”, p245.
  2. 51. Robert H. Moore, II (1996). “Graham’s Petersburg, Jackson’s Kanawha, and Lurty’s Roanoke Horse Artillery”,

http://reocities.com/Heartland/Hills/1850/Grahamsdetails.html; Schulte, Petersburg Virginia Artillery webpage, Petersburg Virginia Artillery (Graham’s VA Battery) — The Siege of Petersburg Online (beyondthecrater.com); NARA, (1973) M935, Roll 15, 4.P.58, 0380-82: Inspection Reports and Related Records Received By the Inspection Branch in the Confederate Adjutant and Inspector General’s Office.

  1. O.R., 46, Pt2, p465-66; O.R., 46, Pt1, p369; Bearss, p211-12.
  2. Calkins, p23.


About the Author

Photo of Dr. Nigel Lambert at Petersburg National Battlefield

Visiting Petersburg National Park (Oct 2015)

Dr Nigel Lambert is British and lives near Norwich, England. Semi-retired, Nigel is a biochemist by profession, although from the turn of this century he has been involved in health research from a social perspective. A life-long Civil War enthusiast, he has been privileged to visit many of the wonderful battlefields on several occasions. A recent chance encounter with a civil war rifle ignited his interest in the battle of Hatcher’s Run. Surprised by the sparse and conflicting literature on the battle, he decided to employ his scientific knowhow to create this series of articles exploring the Rebel Order of Battle for Hatcher’s Run.




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