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btfire
03-03-2009, 12:04 AM
This is from the papers of Adolphus U. Brown, Captain of Infantry in the Holcombe Legion. This exam was taken in September of 1864 while the Legion was in Petersburg. Brown had served as the Captain of company A since September of 1863 and went before the board in 1864. He was promoted from First Lieutenant to Captain upon full completion of this test. It consisted of this written exam, an oral board, solicited testimonials from other officers and men. I am submitting the written exam, and should there be interest, I will post the testimonials.



Headquarters Elliott's Brigade
Johnson's Division
Sept 17th 1864


Examination of 1st Lieut A.U. Brown, Co A, Holcombe Legion for promotion to Captaincy

Question
How long have you been in service; how long have you held the position of 1st Lieut of your company and in how many actions have you been engaged?
Answer
I entered the service the 21st of Nov 1861. I have held the position of 1st Lieut since April the ?? 1863. I have been in eight battles namely, first on Edisto Island, SC, Rapahannock, VA, then 2 Manassas, Va, South Mountain MD, Sharpsburg, MD, Kinston, NC, Goldsboro, NC, Jackson, Misp. In one skirmish on the Petersburg an Weldon R Road, VA.
Question
What are the duties of a captain of a company?
Answer
A capt of a company should see to the theoretical ??? and practical instruction of the non commissioned officers and obey all superior officers and aquaint him self with the signals and attend to the needs of his company having good discipline and good behavior on ??? in ???? ????? and all mis behavor in the regt ?? company of
Question
How is the company formed past the commissioned and non commissioned officers?
Answer
A Company is formed in the rank of corpl in the front rank according to high. the tallest corpl and tallest men will form the first file of the company and so on to the left which will consist of the shortest corpl an shortest men. the captain on the right of the company touching with the capt elbows the 1st sergt in the rear rank covering captain an in the manerver he will be designated right guide of the company. the following officer and sergt are posted ???? paces in the rear of the company in the ???? wing order the 1st lieut opposite the centre of the first section. the 2nd lieut opposed the centre of the first platoon. the 3rd lieut opposed the centre of the second platoon. the 2nd sergt opposed the second file from the left of the company in the maneuver he will be designated the left guide of the company. the 3rf sergt opposed the second file from the left of the first platoon, the 4th sergt opposed the second file from the right of the second platoon the fifth sergt opposed the second file from the right of the company.
Question
Give the general principle of a wheel from a fixes and a moveable pivot?
Answer
A wheel from a fixed pivot of the elbow is to the pivot and the guide will change to the marching flank to conduct the wheel. a wheel from a moveable pivot the touch of the elbow will be to the wheeling flank
Question
A company marching by the flank to form by platoon into line?
Answer
A company marching by the right flank to form platoon into line the command will be by platoons into line the platoons will double qquick in to line, the guide willl continue to march state to the front the captain will place hi self before the centre of the first platoon on the 1st lt before the centre of the second passing through the opening made in the center of the company, of the march be by the left flanl the captain will pass around the left of the second platoon in ??? to place him self in front of the first. the captain an lieut without waiting for each other will command guide left or right at the instant ther respect platoon is formed
Question
The company marching by front to break into platoons and then to reform the company. Give in each case the commands and the execution
Answer
The company marching by the frontan supposed to make a part of a subdivison to brake it in to platoons the instruction will give the command to the captain brake in to platoons the captin will place himself before the centre of the first platoon an command first platoon forward the 1st lieut will round the left of the company and ???? the second platoon to mark at the command march the second platoon will mark time until it is ???? from the first co soon as unmark the ??? of the second platoon will command right oblique march as soon as it arrives in rear of the first it ??? will command forward march guide left. to reform the comapny it being in platoon the chief will command form company. the chied of the first platoon will caution it to the right oblique the chief of the second platoon will caution it to forward at the command march from the instant ??? the chief of the first platoon will ???
it to right obleek and soon as he has oblique and give distant for the second platoon he will command mark time march a, soon as the second platoon arrives opposite the left of the first the ??? will command forward march guide left the 1st lieut will take his place in the rear of the company.
Question
Being in column by platoon right in front to form in the right into line?
Answer
Being in column by platoons to form on right in to line the instuctor will give the command on right in to line guide right. At this command the chief of the first platoon will giv the command first platoon on right in to line march, the chief of the second will command forward march guide right and as soon as the second platoon arrives opposed the left of the first it chief will command on right into line march, as soon as they are on the line the command halt on the captain will ???? the company to the right. the first lieut will take his place in the rear of the compnay being formed/
Question
Moving by columns of platoons right in front to continue the march in the same direction by the right flank?
Answer
The instructor will command by platoons by the right flank by file left march, at this command the chief of platoons will face their platoon to the right an by file left repeating the command from ther chief as soon as the second platoon will close up on the left of the first it chief will return and take his place in rear of the company in line of file closers
Question
Moving by the right flank how is a company formed by the right by file into line?
Answer
The instructor will give the command in right by file into line march, at this command the right guide will file to the right six pace an halt the rear rank will mark time until four men of the front rank are formed on the right guide when the front rank arrived opposed to the right of the men a line the firs??? file will turn to the right when arrived in ten paces of the ??? a line [No2?] will halt and let ?? one pace before ???? the remaining file will each march state to the front untill the arrive opposite ther place on the ??? aline an will turn to the right as is prescibed for the first ten files, the reat rank will conform to what has been prescribed for the front they will ??? to the right the captin will see that the men arrive on the line ????? an ???? a good line the cpatin will bee on the right of the company
Question
How many methods are there of deploying a line of skirmishers?
Answer
There are Two? method to deploy a line of skirmishers forward and by the flanks.
Question
explain the method of deploying the first platoon as skirmishers by each of the foregoing methods
Answer
To deploy the first platoon as skirmishers forwards, the captain will command first platoon as skirmishers on ???? a file take entervals, march at this command the captain will place the ??? sergeant as the left of the platoon an ??? him on the point where he want the left to rest the left group? will march strate to the front the remaining group of four men will throw foward the left ???? in an oblique manner to the right an march in this direction untill they have gain the distance of twenty paces from the left group. each group will have twenty paces distant from the other, the captain will then command halt at that command the group of men will deploy at the distant of five paces from each other. to deploy from a group will be on No 2 of the eaven files of the group no 1 of the front rank will go ten paces to the right of no 2. no 1 of the rear rank will go five paces to the right of no 2 and no 2 of the rear rank will go five paces to the left of no 1 of the front rank. the group will all deploy ???? to ??? by the ???? the captain will command first platoon as skirishers by the right flank take entervals at this command the platoon will face to the right the left group will stant fast until it ??? that the group on it right has got pace and then it will deploy as the remaining group will halt and deploy as they git ther proper enterval and face to the enemy. the fifth sergt will be places in the center of the platoon as centre guide the right and left ???? when advancing will be on the right and left of the line and at a halt be eight paces in rear of the right and left wing.
Question
Kan the above deployment ???? the ???? and give the posts of the commissioned officers?
Answer
The captain will take command of the line of skirmishers and at the distant of thirty paces and rear of the center of the line of skirmishers. the first lieut will take command of the second platoon and hold it in reserve at the distant of one hundred and fifty paces in rear of the center of the line. The second and third lieut will be posted on the right and left flank of the line of skirmishers an 12 paces in the rear they will assist the captin in the maneuver and repeat his command and see that they are executed ???? by the skirmishers
Question
Give the rule for firing while at a halt while advancing and while retireing
Answer
While at a halt the captain will command commence firing at this command the front rank will fire and load an as soon as loaded the rear rank will fire and sow on, one rank must all ways bee loaded. To fire advancing the captain will command commence fireing at this command the front rank will halt and fire and load before ???? ther ???? the rear rank will march strate to the front and halt at the distant of 12 paces and as soon as they see that the front rank is loaded the rear rank will fire and load and the front rank will be 12 paces and halt and wait untill the rear rank has loaded and then fire and sow on. Ins Firing in retreat the captain will command commence firing at this command the front rank will halt and face to the enemy and fire and load while throwing them selves retiring the rear rank will march at the command commence firing about 12 paces and halt and face to the enemy and as soon as the front rank is loaded and passes the rear rank it will fire and load throwing them selves retiring while loading and sow on until the command to stop firing.
Question
Of how many companies divisions and wings is a regiment composed in what order are the companies posted and what are the positions of the field and staff officers then in line of battle
Answer
A regt is composed of ten companies five divisions and two winge. 1,6,4,9,5,8,3,10,7,2 are the order in which the company as posted. post of field officers ???? position is thirty pace in rear of the file closers center of the battalion. The lieut col and major ??? posted 12 paces in rear of the file closers centres of the right and left wing of the battalion. the adjutant and sergeant major are posted 8 pace in rear of the file closers an opposed the right and left of the battalion
Question
Mention and explain the different methods of firing in the school of the battalion?
Answer
The battalion being formed the colonel may execute the fire by battalion, or by rank or by wing or by company in the following order. To fire by battalion the colonel will command fire by battalion, battalion ready aim fire load. To fire by rank the colonel will command fire by rank front rank ready aim fire load and as soon as the front rank is loaded he will command rear rank ready ai fire load and sow on, to fire by wing, the colonel will command right wing ready ai, fire load as soon as loaded he will command left wing ready aim fire load and sow on, the fire by company the colonel will command fire by company the fire by company will commence on the right of the battalion. The colonel will command commence firing the captain of the first company will go to the rear and center of his company and command first company aim fire load and as soon as loaded the captain of the second company will command ??? company ready aim fire load and sow on ???? throug the line. The colonel may have the fire executed by the odd and eaven companys. The colonel will command odd company ready commence firing at this command the first company will fire and as soon as fired and the captain of the third company see one or two men loaded in the first company he will command third company aim fire load and soe on successivly after one an other the eaven company will fire like wise. the colonel may command fire by file battalion ready commence firing at this command each captain will go to the centre rear of his company and command such a company to fire by file commence firing, the first file on the right by each company will aim fire as soon as fired the second file will aim fire and sow on to the left of the company, and after the fire by file passes through the company they will not wait for each other to fire.
Question
Moving in column by companies right in front how is the battalion formed on the right into line?
Answer
The colonel will command on right in to line guide right. the adjutant will place ??? marker where he want the first company to form and as soon as the right of the first company arrives opposite the marks the captain will command first company right turn march and as soon as it git on its line with the marker the captain will command first company halt right dress the second company will march strate to the front untill it arrives opposite the left of the first the captain will command second company right turn march at that command the left guide will spin out on the line where the left of the company out to rest the captain will command halt right dress and dress it on the line of the first company the remaining companies will conform to what the ???? ???? for the first and second.

The board also examined this officer orally both in tactics and army regulations, Testimonials were also submitted to the board which are inclosed. The actual trial of drill was dispensed with from necessity - the troops being all on duty in the trenches. The written answers of this application is ???? conclusive of his want of ????. This is a matter of embarrassment? to the board. But the entire examination, with the testimonials submitted, gives evidence of general fitness and good soldierly qualifications. Regarding industry, application, courage and ???? in command as the chief requites of a good soldier and successful officer, we recommend that 1st Lieut A.U. Brown Co "A" Holcombe Legion be promoted.
Respectfully submitted

J.H.Hudson, Lt Col. 26th SC Vols
J.R. Culp Lieut Col 17th SCV
J.? Avery Maj 17th SC Vols

DougCooper
03-03-2009, 12:54 AM
Thanks for posting this! The first time it came up on the AC I never made a copy and of course, it died in the AC "great fire" of 2004.

Well done (I made a copy this time).

btfire
03-03-2009, 08:17 AM
Here are the testimonials from others...


Nottoway Bridge Va
Sept 25th 1864

We the undersigned officers of the detachment, stationed at this place do certify that we know 1st Lt A.U. Brown; that we have found him a faithful soldiers + good officer, + respected by his company; that his company is well drilled + disciplined as well as well behaved; that he has been in command for the last 13 months; that no company is more prompt to do its duty; that Leut Brown has been in all the engagements of his regimnent; that he commanded as sergeant on one ??? occasion and that we consider him the proper man for promotion and do therefore recommend that he be made captain of Comp "A" Holcombe Legion Infantry S.C.V.


A.B. Briant, Capt C ????? 2nd Lt Co. G
Comdg detachment S.C. Miller 2nd Lt Co "A" H Legn
E. ????, ???? 1st Lt J. Pinson, Lt Co. A
LC Brown ??? Lieut Co B Hol Leg
A.H. Williams H. Co HL




Nottoway Bridge, Sussex Co. Va.
Sept 25th 1864

We, the undersigned, officers Non Com Officers + privates of Co. "A" Holcombe Legion Infantry S.C.V believeing 1st Lieut A.U. Brown to have the capacity to command said company as Captain do hereby recommend him for promotion to the "Examining Board."

In addition to his capabilities his former gallantry + valuable service, the latter of which is sufficient alone entitle him to Promotion - a brief synopsis of which may not be amiss? He entered the Service as a Private in his present company in the first year of the war but was very soon thereafter promoted to Sergt and as such commanded the company for the greater part of the year 1862. In the campaign of that year in Va + Maryland his services were truly valuable and because of these his company elected him 1st Lieut in the Spring of 1863. In this position he served ??? to the present time and for more than 13 months has been constantly in command. He has never been absent from sickness of without proper authority. His services have been given entirely to his company + country. He has participated in all engagements + actions of his regiment and ???? as Sergt commanded in the battle of Kinston NC.

Where such is the case, his capabilities being duly considered we would most respectfully urge the "Board" to promote him to Captaincy.

S.L Miller 2nd Lt Co. "A" HL
Jesse Pinson 3 Lt Co A L.W. ?rail
J.N. Miller 1st Sergt J.H. Turner
J.J. Foster 2nd Sergt E.R. Johnson
J.E. Mason 3rd Sergt
N.L Potter 4 Sergt

Privates
L.L. Johnson T.M. Meadder
George Thomas W.E.K Moore
L.W. Johnson M.J. ?????
James Hill G.N. Thomas
James Smith S.N.West
G.P.Trail W.F.W. Meaders
C.A. Ba??? Jesse Mathis
Thomas J. Moore ?.L. Miller
C.C. Morrow E.B.Miller
T.P. Levitzer J.P. Finch
Thos. F. Fielder Wm. T. Brown
A Bridges Bird. Hombre?
N Bridges Frank L Anderson
E. Spencer G.W. Finch
DD Webber
Thomas Errin?
Cham Linder
John B????
L. Scruggs

btfire
03-03-2009, 08:18 AM
Head Quarters Elliott's Brigade
Johnson's Division
Octh 18th 1864

Special Orders
No. 73

1st Lieut A.U. Brown having been declared competent by a Board of Examination is in accordance with orders from General R E Lee Commanding the Army promoted to be Captain of Company A Holcombe Legion SCV to rank from 8th day of November 1863 vice T.C. Brady dismissed. Subject however to the approval of the Secretary of War.
By Comd of Brig Gen Wallace
AL Evans
aaGenl

Buttons77thPVI
03-03-2009, 07:23 PM
Thanks for all of this, very interesting.


Chris Bruffett

Kiev Thomason
03-04-2009, 11:52 AM
Good post buddy. I think that there should be test like this in the hobby for NCOs and CO/Lt. Very cool!

DougCooper
03-04-2009, 12:41 PM
In thinking about it, there must be somewhere the guide, or test or whatever written informaton used in Examining Boards by the US Army. Anyone ever seen anything like that?

Dignann
03-04-2009, 01:10 PM
Cool info. Can you provide a source?

Eric

Brian Baird
03-04-2009, 02:50 PM
Doug,

Here's some more info on officer's exams posted in the sinks awhile back

http://www.authentic-campaigner.com/forum/showthread.php?t=21055&highlight=exam

Brian Baird

Pvt_Sullivan
03-04-2009, 03:37 PM
Cool info. Can you provide a source?

Brian cited his reference right from the start...


This is from the papers of Adolphus U. Brown, Captain of Infantry in the Holcombe Legion. This exam was taken in September of 1864 while the Legion was in Petersburg. Brown had served as the Captain of company A since September of 1863 and went before the board in 1864. He was promoted from First Lieutenant to Captain upon full completion of this test. It consisted of this written exam, an oral board, solicited testimonials from other officers and men. I am submitting the written exam, and should there be interest, I will post the testimonials.

I believe he got the scanned documents from the Charleston Library...

Bri, please correct me if I'm wrong...

Dignann
03-04-2009, 03:58 PM
Thank you. I guess I should have been more specific. I am interested in the location. Personal papers in some library or other repository, or official military records (CSRs) at the National Archives.

Eric

Kiev Thomason
03-04-2009, 03:58 PM
In thinking about it, there must be somewhere the guide, or test or whatever written informaton used in Examining Boards by the US Army. Anyone ever seen anything like that?

I will try and get in touch with Ft Mac. here in Atlanta. They have an Army museum and may have some info or at least know where we could look.

Greg Barnett
03-04-2009, 04:06 PM
Good post buddy. I think that there should be test like this in the hobby for NCOs and CO/Lt. Very cool!

Kiev,
That is just what I thought. I have been studying the article myself. An excellent means of "learnin".

Kiev Thomason
03-04-2009, 04:28 PM
Kiev,
That is just what I thought. I have been studying the article myself. An excellent means of "learnin".

Oh by the way..I got your LT bars for your CS coat done today.

btfire
03-06-2009, 10:38 PM
Now that people have had a chance to read and review the initial post of this thread, does anybody want to score it? Are his answers right or wrong? Why are the answers right/wrong? Would you have promoted Mr. Brown based on this written test?