Saturday, April 5, 2014

Shiloh's Mortuary Monuments: Honoring Fallen Officers

There are five unique Mortuary Monuments at Shiloh National Military Park, placed there in 1902 to honor 2 Confederate and 3 Union officers killed or mortally wounded during the April 6-7, 1862 battle.  The monuments were designed by the park commission's chief engineer Atwell Thompson and erected by the government close to where the officer was killed or wounded at a cost of $250 each.  The rectangular base is made of reinforced concrete upon which is mounted 4 small pyramids of deactivated 8" cannon balls and an upright tube of a 30 Pounder Parrot Rifle.  A bronze plaque with information about each officer is mounted on the cannon barrel between the trunnions. 

                    General A. S. Johnston Mortuary Monument

General Albert Sidney Johnston commanded the Army of Mississippi at Shiloh.  Born February 2, 1803 in Washington, Kentucky he was the youngest son of Dr. John and Abigail Johnston.  He graduated from the U. S. Military Academy in 1826, ranking 8th of 41 cadets and was appointed a brevet 2nd lieutenant in the 2nd U. S. Infantry.  Johnston would serve in the U. S Army before and after his tenure with the army of the Republic of Texas (1836-1840) before resigning his commission in March 1861 to join the Confederate States Army.

                                   General Albert Sidney Johnston

General Johnston assumed command of the Western Military Department of the Confederate States in September 1861.  After suffering defeats at Mill Springs, Ft. Henry, Ft. Donelson and Nashville in late 1861 and early 1862 Johnston withdrew his forces to the vital railroad junction at Corinth, Mississippi.  In early April 1862 his reorganized and reinforced forces left Corinth and at dawn on April 6 made a surprise attack on the Union Army of the Tennessee camped at Pittsburg Landing.  In the early afternoon while leading his forces he was shot in the right leg, presumably by his own men.  The bullet severed an artery and Johnston soon bled to death.  His remains were taken to New Orleans for burial.  He was later disinterred and reburied in Austin Texas.  Johnston is the highest ranking Confederate officer killed during the Civil War.

                    Brig. General W. H. L Wallace Monument as constructed 

                       Brig. General Wallace Mortuary Monument today

William Harvey Lamme Wallace was born July 8, 1821 in Urbana, Ohio the son of John any Mary Lamme Wallace.  As a young man he read law under Theophilus L. Dickey a friend of Abraham Lincoln and was admitted to the bar in 1846.  He served in the Mexican War with the 1st Illinois Infantry.  When the Civil War broke out Wallace volunteered as a private with the 11th Illinois Volunteer Infantry.  The close friend of future General Thomas E. G. Ransom was elected Colonel of the 11th.  Wallace fought gallantly with the 11th Illinois at Ft. Donelson which earned him a brigadier general's star.   He assumed command  of the 2nd Division, Army of the Tennessee after Major General Charles F. Smith was sidelined by a leg injury.

                                 Brigadier General W. H. L. Wallace

Wallace's Division, which was engaged near the Hornet's Nest, withstood numerous Confederate assaults on April 6 before his division was surrounded and himself mortally wounded from a shot through the head.  He remained on the field the night of April 6th before being removed to the Cherry Mansion at Savannah, Tennessee where his wife Anne Dickey Wallace cared for until his death on April 12, 1862.  He is buried in Ottowa, Illinois.

           Brig. General Adley H. Gladden Mortuary Monument (nps photo)

Brigadier General Adley Hogan Gladden, commander of the 1st Brigade, 2nd Division, 2nd Corps, Army of the Mississippi at Shiloh, was born at Fairfield, South Carolina September 28, 1810.  At age 20 Gladden moved to Columbia, South Carolina where he was a cotton broker.  He commanded the Palmetto Regiment in the Mexican War.  When Ft. Sumter fell Gladden was living in Louisiana.

                                      Brig. General Adley H. Gladden

At the outset of the war Gladden commanded the 1st Louisiana in Florida.  He was promoted to Brigadier General September 30, 1861.  In January 1862 Gladden and his brigade were transferred to Mobile, Alabama and later Corinth, Mississippi where the Army of Mississippi was assembling prior to advancing toward Pittsburg Landing.

While assaulting Union forces on the north edge of Spain Field on the morning of April 6 the 51 year old Gladden was mortally wounded by either a cannon ball or a shell fragment that severely mangled his left arm.  His arm was amputated, however gangrene set in and he died at Corinth, Mississippi on April 12.  He is buried at the Magnolia Cemetery in Mobile, Alabama.

To be continued:

Shiloh's Mortuary Monuments: Honoring Fallen Officers, Part II

Colonel Everett Peabody was born in Springfield, Massachusetts, June 30, 1830.  When 15 he studied at Burlington College in Vermont.  A year later he moved to Cambridge and graduated from Harvard in 1849 with a degree in civil engineering.  He soon had a job as a rodman for the Cleveland, Painesville & Ashtabula Railroad.  By age 23 he was a chief engineer having worked on railroads in Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Missouri.

                                      Colonel Everett Peabody

When the Civil War erupted Everett Peabody was chief engineer of the Platte County Railroad.  As noted in "A Child's History of the United States", Volume 3," he was "6' 1" tall, broad and heavy, cool and grave in manner and accustomed to toil and exposure."  Peabody enlisted in the Union Army and was mustered in to the 13th Missouri Volunteers.  He was wounded and later captured at Lexington, Kentucky.  After being exchanged Peabody organized the 25th Missouri.

At Shiloh Colonel Everett Peabody commanded the 1st Brigade in Major General Benjamin Prentiss's 6th Division, Army of the Tennessee.  He was concerned that Confederate forces were in his front therefore before dawn on April 6 he sent out a reconnaissance force which ran into soldiers from the Army of Mississippi thus starting the Battle of Shiloh.  While leading his troops Colonel Peabody was wounded five times once in the hand, thigh, neck, body and head.  The bullet that killed him entered the upper lip and passed out the back of his head.  He was buried in a gun-box on the field.  he was later disinterred and reburied in Springfield, Massachusetts.

        Colonel Everett Peabody's Mortuary & Headquarter Monument

Peabody's Mortuary Monument is one of two at Shiloh that were uniquely designed (the other being W. H. L. Wallace's, which was originally built with an apron of cannonballs and steps).  Peabody's Monument serves as both a brigade headquarters monument and a mortuary monument which is exemplified by the star shaped plaque on the pyramid on the south east corner of the monument.

Colonel Julius Raith commanded the 3rd Brigade of Major General John McClernand's 1st Division, Army of the Tennessee during the Battle of Shiloh.  Julius was born in Germany March 29, 1819.  He immigrated to the United States with his family in 1836, settling in St. Clair County, Illinois.  Raith later moved to Columbia, Monroe County, Illinois where he became a millwright.  Colonel Raith was a Mexican War veteran, serving as captain of Company H, 2nd Regiment Illinois Volunteers.

                 Colonel Julius Raith Mortuary Monument (nps photo)

When the Civil War started Julius Raith was living in O'Fallon, Illinois, the proprietor of a flour mill.  During September 1861 he raised the 43rd Illinois Volunteer Infantry, serving as the regiment's colonel when it was mustered into federal service on October 12.  The regiment was engaged at Ft Henry and Donelson under Raith's command before moving to Pittsburg Landing.

              Colonel Julius Raith (Arkansas Old State House Collection)

While leading the 3rd Brigade near the present intersection of Confederate Road and the Hamburg-Purdy Road on April 6, 1862 Raith was severely wounded in the right thigh.  He lay on the field until April 7 when he was removed and placed on the steamer Hannibal.  His leg was amputated but he died of infection on board the steamer April 11, 1862, leaving 2 young sons orphans as his wife had preceded him in death in 1859.  Colonel Raith is buried in the Shiloh Valley Cemetery, St. Clair County, Illinois.

Thanks are tendered to Ranger Tom Parson, Shiloh National Military Park for information pertaining to construction and erection of the monuments.