6th Regiment, Mississippi Cavalry

(from Dunbar Rowland’s "Military History of Mississippi, 1803-1898"; list of companies courtesy H. Grady Howell’s "For Dixie Land, I’ll Take My Stand")

 

Company A -- Harper’s Company (raised in Noxubee County, MS)

Company B -- Brown’s Company (raised in Itawamba County, MS)

Company C -- Pardue’s Company (raised in Itawamba County, MS), aka Morgan’s Company (raised in Monroe County, MS)

Company D -- Carter’s Company (raised in Tishomingo County, MS)

Company E -- Hunt’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company F -- Harrington’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company G -- Runnel’s Company (raised in Neshoba County, MS)

Company H -- Richards’ Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company I -- Johnston’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company K -- Lipscomb’s Company (raised in Lowndes County, MS)

Company L -- Williams’ Company (raised in Chickasaw County, MS)

 

In October, 1863, Colonel Isham Harrison was forming his regiment at Columbus, according to report of Col. Richardson, commanding district. Harrison was ordered to report to General Ruggles at Columbus, February 11, 1864, his regiment to be armed there. February 23, Colonel Harrison, commanding cavalry brigade in the Columbus district, was directed to send his regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Sykes' detachment, Colonel Morton's Battalion and Haller’s section of Rice's Artillery to Cotton Gin port for defense of the Tombigbee. February 24, General Lee asked that the regiment be sent to Artesia to await his orders.

The regiment was assigned to Mabry's Brigade, with the Fourth Cavalry, Fourteenth Confederate, and Thirty-eighth Mounted Infantry, about 1,000 in all, which, upon the approach 0f the third Federal expedition in Forrest's country, moved from Saltillo to Ellistown, July 9, 1864. and reported to General Bufford, of Forrest's Cavalry. Colonel Harris was sent with the Sixth to Plentytude, to operate on the flank of Gen. A. J. Smith's Union troops, moving to Pontotoc, and they skirmished on the 11th. On the 13th, Mabry's Brigade, accompanied by Generals Lee and Forrest, followed the enemy toward Tupelo, skirmishing sharply. Smith went into line of battle at Harrisburg, and Lee and Forrest attacked July 14. Mabry’s Brigade advanced under a furious fire of artillery. He reported: "My line advanced steadily, driving a heavy line of skirmishers back to the fortifications. A most terrific fire of small arms was opened on me when we were within about 300 yards of the works. I immediately ordered a charge, but the heat was so intense and the distance so great that some officers and men fell exhausted and fainting along my line, while the fire from the enemy's line of works by both artillery and smallarms was so heavy and well directed that many were killed and wounded. These two causes of depletion left my line almost like a line of skirmishers. At about sixty yards from the enemy's works, seeing that my line was too much weakened to drive the enemy, I halted and directed the men to protect themselves by lying down in a hollow and behind a low fence. I held this position until our second line came up to within about 100 yards of my rear and was repulsed, when I gave the order to fall back. My loss in the hollow and in falling back was severe." Among the killed were Col. Isham Harrison, Lieut.-Col. Thomas M. Nelson, Capt. T. G. Fields, and Lieuts. W. D. Carrington, Company H; and A. D. Clifton, Company C. Among the wounded, Lieut. J. F. Clifton, Company B; Sergt. W. J. Sweeney, D; Lieut. J. Turner, E; Capt. A. C. Johnson, Lieut. William Bell, I; Lieut. T. W. Cobb, A.

Colonel Heath, Thirty-third Missouri (Union), reported that after the repulse of the last assault, Captain McKee's company, deployed to fill a gap in the line, "came upon a party of the enemy's sharpshooters, whom he charged and drove frown cover," capturing a flag "supposed to belong to the Sixth Mississippi," which the party was "endeavoring to recover from the hands of their dead color bearer."

The total casualties of the Sixth were 13 killed, 46 wounded, 14 missing. The brigade of which it was a part was about 1,000 strong before the battle. Total Confederate casualties, killed and wounded, 1,262; Federal, killed and wounded, 636.

"The battle of Harrisburg will furnish the historian a bloody record, but it will also stamp with immortality the gallant dead and the living heroes it has made. Prominent among the dead the names of Col.. Isham Harrison and Lieut.-Col. Thomas M. Nelson, of the Sixth Mississippi; Lieut.-Col. John B. Cage, commanding Fourteenth Confederate, Lieut.-Col. Sherrill, of the Seventh Kentucky, and Major Robert C. McCay, of the Thirty-eighth Mississippi, will shine in fadeless splendor. They were lion-hearted officers and courteous men. It was a sad blow that struck down these gallant spirits. In unselfish devotion to the cause and high courage they leave no superiors behind among men. Their noble natures and ardent patriotism, it is hoped, will find in the soldier's grave that peace for which their country has thus far struggled in vain, and for the achievement of which they have sacrificed their lives. Future generations will never weary in hanging garlands upon their graves." (Report of General Forrest.)

August 1 the brigade was reported 400 present for duty. Captain Lipscomb was promoted as Lieutenant-Colonel, commanding the regiment, which was returned to Gen. Wirt Adams' district.

Colonel Lipscomb was at Macon with about 250 of Mabry's Brigade, when Grierson's raiders, from Memphis, struck the Mobile and Ohio Railroad in December, 1864. Grierson eluded most of the Confederate commands, and Lipscomb, in his pursuit, did not come up with him.

In February, 1865, with Mabry's Brigade, Wirt Adams' Cavalry, between Vicksburg and Jackson. March 3, General Forrest ordered Mabry's Brigade broken up and assigned the Sixth to Brig.-Gen. Starke's Brigade. This brigade arrived at Selma, Ala., during the battle of April 2, but was unable to render assistance. Thence they fell back to Livingston, Ala., their post, April 30. The dates of capitulation were: By General Taylor, commanding department, May 4; by General Forrest, at Gainesville, Ala., May 22, 1865. In 1865 the Sixth was consolidated with the Eighth, Colonel Duff, but the Sixth Regiment, Col. R. G. Brown, retained its identity to the last.

 

wpe1.jpg (3785 bytes)

Do you have an ancestor in this unit?   If so, contact the Mississippi Department of Archives and History for his service record.  Then contact us for a membership application.

wpe1.jpg (3785 bytes)

001h.gif (1688 bytes)
Mississippi History