The Anderson Troop, an independent cavalry company, primarily intended for escort and headquarters duty with General Robert Anderson, in command of the Army of the Ohio, but subsequently retained with Generals Sherman, Buell, and Rosecrans who succeeded General Anderson, was recruited at Carlisle Barracks, during the months of October and November, 1861, for the term of three years, under special authority of the Secretary of War. It was organized with the following officers:
and started on the 2d of December for Louisville, Kentucky, arriving on the 7th. For a period of nearly three months, it was thoroughly drilled and disciplined, and the Inspector General reported it as "by far the best company I have yet seen in the department."
- William J. Palmer, Captain
- William Spencer, First Lieutenant
- Thomas S. Maple, Second Lieutenant
On the 24th of February, 1862, it moved with General Buell to Nashville, where it remained a month, and then entered upon an active campaign in the field, proceeding with the Army of the Ohio to the support of General Grant at Pittsburg Landing.
When heavy firing was heard on the morning of the 6th of April, the head of Bueil's column, which had reached Waynesburg, was put in motion, and moved rapidly towards the field. The infantry and artillery took precedence in crossing the river, and hence the Troop did not reach the scene of action until the battle was over. Four of the men, privates Rummel, Hewitt, Stevenson, and N. M. Smith, were detailed at midnight of the 6th, to report to, General Buell on the battle-field. They reached the Landing at daylight, and, for the three succeeding days acted as orderlies to the General, winning by their good conduct a complimentary order, in which he says: "They were in the thickest of the fight, and behaved themselves with the coolness of veterans."
On the 8th the Troop crossed the river, and encamped three and a half miles south of Shiloh Church, where the headquarters of the army had been established. In the operations before Corinth, the Troop participated, and on the 1st of June, after the retreat of the enemy, Captain Palmer, with thirty men, scouted as far as Iuka, but without meeting the enemy. Soon afterwards, Buell was ordered to move with his army to Huntsville, Alabama, where he arrived on the 1st of July.
On the 24th, Captain Palmer, with a number of his men, was ordered to Pennsylvania, to recruit three additional companies for the formation of a full battalion. This purpose was afterwards changed, and a full regiment was raised, which was known as the Anderson Cavalry. A large number of the officers of the new regiment were taken from the Troop, but the Troop was never incorporated with the regiment, and to the close of its service remained an indepondeut organization, under command of Lieutenant Maple.
In the race for Louisville, between the armies of Buell and Bragg, which commenced towards the close of August, the Troop acted in conjunction with the Fourth United States Cavalry, and was constantly engaged in the most arduous scouting duty on the flank of the enemy, frequently skirmishing with his cavalry, and keeping the commanding General well advised of his progress and strength. Buell having reached Louisville in advance of the enemy, and having been reinforced, assumed the offensive.
At Springfield, on the 6th of October, the Troop was engaged, and on the two following days in the battle of Perryville. Three of its number, while bearing dispatches from M'Cook to Buell, were captured, but managed to destroy the dispatches, thus preventing them from falling into the enemy's hands.
After the battle, Bragg retreated rapidly, and the Union army followed to Nashville, where it remained in camp until the 26th of December, when the movement upon Murfreesboro began. In the fierce fighting at Stone River, which ensued, the Troop was actively engaged in orderly and courier duty, receiving the flattering commendation of General Rosecrans, for the fidelity and zeal evinced. Lieutenant Evan W. Grubb was instantly killed by a solid shot, while in the discharge of his duty. At the close of the campaign, the Troop encamped at Murfreesboro, and continued in the discharge of headquarters duty until the 24th of March, 1863, when, having been much reduced in numbers by the ordinary casualties of the service, and by promotions from its ranks, General Rosecrans ordered its muster out of service. In a note addressed to its commander, on its departure from the front, General Rosecrans said: "I part with you with as much regret as you yourselves may feel. You are young, and your behavior since I have been in command, gives promise of a career of usefulness and honor, whether in the service of your country, or in private life; may you realize your hopes, and the wishes of your friends."
Bates, Samuel P. History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-65, Harrisburg, 1868-1871.
Organization:Dyer, Frederick H. A Compendium of the War of the Rebellion Compiled and Arranged from Official Records of the Federal and Confederate Armies, Reports of he Adjutant Generals of the Several States, the Army Registers, and Other Reliable Documents and Sources.Des Moines, Iowa: The Dyer Publishing Company, 1908
Organized at Carlisle, Pa., November 30, 1861, for Headquarters and escort duty with Gen. Anderson in Kentucky.
Retained at Headquarters of Gens. Sherman, Buell and Rosecrans, Commanding Army and Dept. of the Ohio and Cumberland, till March, 1863
Moved to Louisville, Ky., December 2-7, 1861.
Duty there till February, 1862.
Moved with Headquarters Army Ohio to Nashville, Tenn., February 24.
March to Savannah, Tenn., to reinforce Army Tennessee March-April.
Battle of Shiloh April 7.
Advance on and siege of Corinth, Miss., April 29-May 30.
Pursuit to Booneville May 31-June 12.
Buell's Campaign in North Alabama and Middle Tennessee June to August.
March to Louisville, Ky., in pursuit of Bragg August 21-September 26.
Pursuit of Bragg into Kentucky October 1-22.
Springfield October 6.
Battle of Perryville October 8.
March to Nashville, Tenn., October 22-November 7, and duty there till December 26.
Advance on Murfreesboro December 26-30.
Lavergne December 26-27.
Wilkinson's Cross Roads December 29.
Battle of Stone's River December 30-31, 1862, and January 1-3, 1863.
Overall's Creek December 31, 1862.
Lavergne January 1, 1863.
Lytle's Creek January 5.
At Murfreesboro till March, 1863. Mustered out March 24, 1863.
Lost during service:
1 killed and 5 by disease. Total 6.
© 2015 Alice J. Gayley, all rights reserved