THE 12TH TEXAS INFANTRY is dedicated TO PORTRAYing THE
war between the states
Order of Battle
October of 1862, Brigadier General Henry McCulloch was assigned the duty of
making a general organization of the Texas Volunteer Infantry that were
encamped at Camp Nelson, Arkansas into a division. The division consisted of
four brigades, with a battery of light artillery attached to each brigade.
Major General John G. Walker relieved McCulloch from command about three months
later, and would command the division until June of 1864. McCulloch was assigned
command of third brigade. This all Texan division would be the largest
Confederate outfit composed of troops from a single state. It has been said
that Walker's division did less fighting and more walking than any other outfit
in the war. While it is true that the division didn't see as much combat as
some in the east, they faced distances and hardships unheard of on the other
side of the Mississippi. Union troops would honor the division with the name we
most often refer to today, "Walker's Greyhounds." This is in respect
to the rapid, long distance, forced marches which put Walker's men anywhere in
Arkansas or Louisiana where the blue suited horde threatened. Walker's
Greyhounds were the backbone of Confederate military force in the Trans-Mississippi
is how the division was organized in October 1862.
Texas Vol. Infantry
Texas Dismounted Cav.
Texas Vol. Infantry
Texas Dismounted Cav.
The fourth brigade was only temporarily attached to the division. They were
quickly detached for service at Arkansas Post, where they were captured on
January 11, 1863. After exchange they finished out the war east of the
March of 1865, the 2nd Texas Partisan Rangers, 34th Texas Cavalry, 29th Texas
Cavalry, and Well's Texas Cavalry were dismounted, attached to the division,
and a new fourth brigade was formed.
might be good to point out that during the war, a dismounted cavalry unit
fought as infantry. Infantry tactics, infantry weapons, infantry gear. What we
see most often at reenactments as "Dismounted Cavalry" should
probably be better described as "cavalry, fighting dismounted." We
will pretend that they got horses hidden in the trees.
at full strength
4 Officers - Capt. & 3 Lts. 9 NCOs 2 Musicians 100 Privates
Two or more companies, less than ten, usually five.
Usually ten companies.
2 - 5 regiments, 4 is most common.
2 - 5 brigades, 4 is most common.
Usually 2 Divisions.
Usually 2 corps,
Basically the same as infantry, sometimes the company
is referred to as a troop.
Batteries had both 4 and 6 guns assigned, most often
6 guns of mixed caliber.
Sort of a combined arms force. Usually consisted of one or two battalions
of infantry, one battalion of cavalry, and a battery of light field
Division Battle History
division was organized in October of 1862 at Camp Nelson near Little Rock AR.
Fifteen hundred (1500) died of measles and pneumonia that first winter, before
they had a chance to see the elephant. By the end of December they were
marching and countermarching between Camp Nelson and Pine Bluff following
orders that reversed themselves every few days, opposing real and imagined
Federal threats. On January 11, 1863 they were ordered to Arkansas Post,
unaware that the post had fallen that very day. The Division stayed in the Pine
Bluff area until the end of April when they were ordered to Alexandria,
Alexandria the Division went into action at Perkins Landing, Milikins Bend and
Young's Point in the Vicksburg area. After the fall of Vicksburg, the Division
was ordered down to south Louisiana to oppose the Yankee menace. The rest of
the year brought more marching, fighting and dueling with Federal gunboats in
the south Louisiana bayou country, capped by the battle of Bayou Boudreaux, the
Atchafalaya Bayou expedition and Yellow Bayou.
would prove to be a long one for the men of Walkers Division. By March, General
Banks had a force of over 40,000 Yankee scumbags poised to march up the Red
River to Shreveport and beyond Texas. Walkers Greyhounds were forced to
fallback in the face of such overwhelming odds, fighting small skirmishes along
the way. On April 8th General Taylor had pulled together every Confederate unit
from three states to make a stand near Mansfield. This would be the hottest
fight of the war for Walkers Greyhounds and they did the job quite well. The
Yankees were beaten back with heavy losses in both men and equipment in a fight
that lasted all day and into the night, as the Yankees skedaddled back down the
road to Pleasant Hill. The 12th Texas was right in the middle of things,
playing a pivotal role in the capture of the Nimms and Chicago Mercantile
resumed the next morning at Pleasant Hill. Yankee reinforcements and Southern exhaustion
more or less led to a push, but the Yankees "advanced to the rear"
the next morning. This would not be the end of it for the Greyhounds. Up in
Arkansas, General Steeles Yankees were making a move on Shreveport from their
base in Little Rock. The call came for the Texans and Walkers men were on the
road to Camden Ark. to face these Yankees. On April 30, they met Steeles force
at Jenkins Ferry on the Saline River in a very hot fight which once again found
the Yankee horde "advancing to the rear".
Steele on his way back from where he comes, the Greyhounds were once again
ordered to Alexandria, Louisiana. Banks and his gunboats were
"surrounded" and the Texans were needed to finish him once and for
all. Banks evacuated Alexandria on May 19th after doing some river engineering
to get the navy out, a few days before the arrival of the Greyhounds.
Banks no longer a threat, the Texas Division was marched to the Mississippi
River with some thought of crossing over but it was not to be. Instead the
Greyhounds were marched back up into Arkansas. The Shreveport area would host
the Division until the first of March, when orders came to return to Texas.
April 15, 1865 the Division marched into Camp Groce, near Hempstead, Texas. The
men were tired of war. News of Robert E. Lee's April 9th surrender of the Army
Northern Virginia added to the gloom. The bigwigs of the Trans-Mississippi
Dept. had ideas of continuing the war in spite of the Confederate collapse in
the east but the men that did the fighting and dying had had enough. On May
19th of 1865 Walkers Greyhounds went home. They didn't surrender, they weren't
captured, and they had just seen enough of war to know when it was over. On May
19th the men mutinied, seized all transportation and supplies and carried off
to their homes everything they could get their hands on. When Kirby Smith
surrendered the Trans-Mississippi Department, his army no longer existed.
Texas Division, like most of the rest of the Confederate Trans-Mississippi era,
has been largely ignored by history. These men are our great great
grandfathers, uncles and other kin. Their nation called and they answered. We
must not let what they went through be forgotten, this is the least that we owe
The government of the Confederate States of America got underway in the
Spring of 1861, not totally prepared to uphold the independence it had
declared. The call went out for all able bodied men. Texas answered with men
from all backgrounds. The 8th Texas Volunteer Infantry originated at Hempstead,
Texas on November 15, 1861, with orders to proceed to Little Rock, Arkansas.
After General John G. Walker assumed command of all the Texas units, the 8th
Texas was formally redesignated as the 12th Texas Infantry. As Walker's Texas
Division, the unit marched throughout Arkansas and Louisiana to defend the
states west of the Mississippi River. The 12th Texas Infantry honored
themselves in such battles as Milliken's Bend, Mansfield, Pleasant Hill and
Jenkins Ferry. At Mansfield, the 12th Texas Infantry captured a Federal battery
and turned the cannons back on the Federal troops. In April of 1865, the 12th
Texas Infantry was disbanded after the surrender at Appomattox. The devotion
and sacrifices that these Texas men endured should not be forgotten.
Texas Division Battle Flag