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  • VA Militia Pics

    I pulled these two images from the 23rd VA's website. The two gentlement are thought to be brothers from the Central Guards of Prince Edward Co. VA. A little more information on these folks can be found on their website http://23rdva.netfirms.com/images.htm



    The website suggests that the CG on the kepi is for Central Guards. Their hats are very similiar to the images of the 1st VA militia that has been debated on the forum several times.
    It seems to be common practice for VA militia to use two letters representing their organization worn low on the face of thier headgear. I've researched this for some time with no avail and it seems to me that it's bound to be out there somewhere and I just can't find it....Would the buttons on the ends of the chin strap be some type of civilian coin or a pre-war military button or even a VA button?
    Furthermore, brims/bills...laquered? Are there any of these still surviving in a museum somewhere with dressings still attached?

    Also, great images for looking and discussing!
    Luke Gilly
    Breckinridge Greys
    Lodge 661 F&AM


    "May the grass grow long on the road to hell." --an Irish toast

  • #2
    Re: VA Militia Pics

    Odd place to carry a sidearm...
    Jesse Parsons
    -37th Virginia Infantry-
    -Wampus Cats Mess-
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: VA Militia Pics

      I agree! A nice static spark from the wool and he's looking for a female unit!
      Luke Gilly
      Breckinridge Greys
      Lodge 661 F&AM


      "May the grass grow long on the road to hell." --an Irish toast

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: VA Militia Pics

        Originally posted by -Jesse- View Post
        Odd place to carry a sidearm...
        It's likely a studio prop.
        Mick Cole
        37th VA Co. E

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: VA Militia Pics

          Since these hats were developed pre-war for VA militia (military) service, would it be appropriate for those buttons to match the ones of their jackets/overcoats? Furthermore, would it be common practice to use United States Service or any type of federal military Buttons?
          Luke Gilly
          Breckinridge Greys
          Lodge 661 F&AM


          "May the grass grow long on the road to hell." --an Irish toast

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: VA Militia Pics

            Could it be a small version of this?
            Attached Files
            Luke Gilly
            Breckinridge Greys
            Lodge 661 F&AM


            "May the grass grow long on the road to hell." --an Irish toast

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: VA Militia Pics

              Originally posted by lukegilly13 View Post
              I pulled these two images from the 23rd VA's website. The two gentlement are thought to be brothers from the Central Guards of Prince Edward Co. VA. A little more information on these folks can be found on their website http://23rdva.netfirms.com/images.htm



              The website suggests that the CG on the kepi is for Central Guards. Their hats are very similiar to the images of the 1st VA militia that has been debated on the forum several times.
              It seems to be common practice for VA militia to use two letters representing their organization worn low on the face of thier headgear. I've researched this for some time with no avail and it seems to me that it's bound to be out there somewhere and I just can't find it....Would the buttons on the ends of the chin strap be some type of civilian coin or a pre-war military button or even a VA button?
              Furthermore, brims/bills...laquered? Are there any of these still surviving in a museum somewhere with dressings still attached?

              Also, great images for looking and discussing!
              Luke,

              Having done a bit of reading on the men of the 23rd VA...and had a hand in bringing some of these images to our website...I can answer a few questions...

              #1. The first Booker "brother" was positively identified as John Morton Booker of the Prince Edward Central Guard...not simply Central Guard.

              #2. Originally these two images were in a single case, which has since been split apart (probably sometime in the late 70s early 80s), at the time the images were published in Albaugh's book Confederate Faces; the images were misidentified as being for the Cumberland Guard, and Charles Booker assigned to the larger of the two brothers...this is not the case and honestly we have no positive identification for the larger of the two Booker brothers. It's not that the website "suggest" CG stands for Central Guard, it does stand for the Prince Edward Central Guards from Prince Edward and Halifax Counties (SW of Richmond City). This is covered in brief detail by Rankin's book on the 23rd Virginia, and we're always looking for more details not covered in that resource.

              #3. You'll note that alot of Pre-war and Early-War Virginia caps share a strickingly familiar resemblance...most being gray in color, with what appears to be a black peaked band encircling the cap. I'm not sure what the "debated" issue is with the 1st Virginia Volunteers' caps...please fill us in.

              #4. With regards to Brass lettering...alot comes down to the company researched at hand...sometimes single letters are used on caps (such as F Company of the 21st Virginia and formerly of the 1st Virginia Volunteers Militia); 2 letters as is seen on the Prince Edward Central Guards Caps, or Brooklyn Grays Caps; and even 3 letters as prescribed by the 1858 regulations for the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) or even the West Augusta Guard's (WAG) 1858 Company Bylaws and Uniform Specifications. There were very loose state regulations...but these seem not to be followed by hardly any of the Volunteer companies...who determined by and large, NOT to wear the Blue uniform prescribed by the Commonwealth.

              #5. Very few, Pre-War/Early-War caps exists today...a few shako, and tall-cap do exists, and example of this is the Warren Rifles tall-cap in the collection of the MoC...I believe this may also be pictured in Echoes of Glory. To answer, yes I believe the brim is enamalled or made of Patent Leather. Buttons on caps range from civilian...to state buttons. If you examine the Hightower image (collection of the Fredericksburg-Spotsylvania NMP) and seen printed in several publications (including the 23rd VA's website)...the buttons appear to protrude heavily from the cap, and are probably of some Virginia State configuration.

              I hope this helps?

              Paul B.
              Paul B. Boulden Jr.


              RAH VA MIL '04
              (Loblolly Mess)
              [URL="http://23rdva.netfirms.com/welcome.htm"]23rd VA Vol. Regt.[/URL]
              [URL="http://www.virginiaregiment.org/The_Virginia_Regiment/Home.html"]Waggoner's Company of the Virginia Regiment [/URL]

              [URL="http://www.military-historians.org/"]Company of Military Historians[/URL]
              [URL="http://www.moc.org/site/PageServer"]Museum of the Confederacy[/URL]
              [URL="http://www.historicsandusky.org/index.html"]Historic Sandusky [/URL]

              Inscription Capt. Archibold Willet headstone:

              "A span is all that we can boast, An inch or two of time, Man is but vanity and dust, In all his flower and prime."

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: VA Militia Pics

                Luke,

                I see the Soldiers in there Militia Style Kepis with the Point Black band in the front ! That was what I was talking about, There hats are of the same one I sold you at Fort sanders. Cool pic's! (-;

                _______________
                W.Verbal
                WigFall Mess
                50th Va. Inf. Co. H. A.N.V.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: VA Militia Pics

                  Paul, thanks for the info! It is definatly of great help!
                  I applogize for the bad choice of words....I should of said discussed not debated refering to the image itself not the hats. The pre-war and early war VA hats are VERY similar hence my interest....I'm trying to create an impression of two of my grandfather's very early war VA enlistment. (one of the 51st and the other of the 58th). We have a letter from him that says "we look like militia" in response to a question from his wife about clothing/uniform.

                  I do have another question for you....are there any more images similar in Rankin's book? I may have to get that inner-library-loan and check it out. I'm trying desperately to compile a nice amount of VA militia soldiers and note the similarities and differences. I tend to see Frocks more than shells until we get more into the later RD series...then it seems to be mostly RD's and/or close copies. Does your research reflect this as well?

                  To my knowledge, my grandfather that I'm researching never spent one day of his life outside of VA (so the family story goes...he was quite proud of that!)!
                  Luke Gilly
                  Breckinridge Greys
                  Lodge 661 F&AM


                  "May the grass grow long on the road to hell." --an Irish toast

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: VA Militia Pics

                    Originally posted by lukegilly13 View Post
                    Paul, thanks for the info! It is definatly of great help!
                    I applogize for the bad choice of words....I should of said discussed not debated refering to the image itself not the hats. The pre-war and early war VA hats are VERY similar hence my interest....I'm trying to create an impression of two of my grandfather's very early war VA enlistment. (one of the 51st and the other of the 58th). We have a letter from him that says "we look like militia" in response to a question from his wife about clothing/uniform.

                    I do have another question for you....are there any more images similar in Rankin's book? I may have to get that inner-library-loan and check it out. I'm trying desperately to compile a nice amount of VA militia soldiers and note the similarities and differences. I tend to see Frocks more than shells until we get more into the later RD series...then it seems to be mostly RD's and/or close copies. Does your research reflect this as well?

                    To my knowledge, my grandfather that I'm researching never spent one day of his life outside of VA (so the family story goes...he was quite proud of that!)!
                    Luke,

                    Unfortunately, Rankin's book only has maybe 4 images of 23rd Virginia members, and is written for the 23rd Virginia...so unless trying to research the actions of that particular Regiment, or glean a tad of information from the actions of the 10th Virginia, or 37th Virginia, it will more than likely not be of any assistance in determining information about any other units...

                    The website for the 23rd Virginia, now has 15 images of 23rd Virginia soldiers shown in uniform, and is by far the most comprehensive guide to images relating to one regiment that I've seen...it includes all the images previously published in Rankin's book on the 23rd.

                    Of these images, most of the uniformed images are believed to be pre-war, or relatively early in the war...as most of the men of the Regiment are wearing frock coats, and/or the unique high peaked and tall crowned kepi...which differs from both a traditional forage cap, shako, and kepi...incorporating the features seen in all 3 types of headwear into a single cap design.

                    Have you looked for the Regimental History book on the 51st Virginia or the 58th?

                    A great article was done on "Battle Shirts" coming from the Piedmont Region of Virginia, and can be found through the following link:

                    http://www.historicsandusky.org/uniforms.htm

                    In talking with Greg Starbuck, it appears that this style shirt in Virginia is unique to within about 60 miles from Lynchburg, Virginia...this would include Amherst County...which had at least one company in the 51st Virginia.

                    The following link to the 51st Virginia website, has a few images of men from the Regiment...including a soldier in a totally different variation of "battle-shirt":

                    http://51stvirginiainfantry.tripod.com/csa/id4.html


                    Roundabout jackets were seen early on in the war...as John Quincy Marr (first Confederate Officer casualty of the war) was killed in June of 1861, wearing a Roundabout jacket. When it comes to militia...it is totally dependant on the company, and region of the Great Commonwealth from which they were organized. Across the state of Virginia you'd see grey frock coats, blue frock coats, a multitude of battle-shirts, roundabout jackets, colonial inspired uniforms....and the headware could be just as diverse; tri-corns, blue "McDowell" brim forage caps, grey caps, shakos...etc. Again...when it comes to early-war...or militia uniforms in Virginia, it's totally dependant on where the company is originating from, or recieving their first uniform issuance from.

                    Although there was a prescribed Virginia Standard...there was wholly no enforcement of this...period.

                    Paul B.
                    Paul B. Boulden Jr.


                    RAH VA MIL '04
                    (Loblolly Mess)
                    [URL="http://23rdva.netfirms.com/welcome.htm"]23rd VA Vol. Regt.[/URL]
                    [URL="http://www.virginiaregiment.org/The_Virginia_Regiment/Home.html"]Waggoner's Company of the Virginia Regiment [/URL]

                    [URL="http://www.military-historians.org/"]Company of Military Historians[/URL]
                    [URL="http://www.moc.org/site/PageServer"]Museum of the Confederacy[/URL]
                    [URL="http://www.historicsandusky.org/index.html"]Historic Sandusky [/URL]

                    Inscription Capt. Archibold Willet headstone:

                    "A span is all that we can boast, An inch or two of time, Man is but vanity and dust, In all his flower and prime."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: VA Militia Pics

                      Not to be off topic.... but if anyone has any information about the uniforms of the VA militia unit known as "Keen's Battalion" (this was my ancestor) it later became the 57th VA under Lew Armistead. The companies in his battalion were: The Franklin Fire Eaters, The Pig River Grays, The Ladies' Guard (a bunch of real casanovas here haha), The Pittsylvania Life Guards... some of these men came from the 42nd and 195th VA militia's.

                      Sorry for the off topic I'm just really interested in finding more about these specific militia companies.
                      2

                      Brett "Homer" Keen
                      Chicago
                      [I]"Excessively spirited in the pranks and mischief of the soldier"[/I]

                      OEF 03-04 [I]Truth Through Exploitation[/I]

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: VA Militia Pics

                        Originally posted by BrettKIllinois View Post
                        Not to be off topic.... but if anyone has any information about the uniforms of the VA militia unit known as "Keen's Battalion" (this was my ancestor) it later became the 57th VA under Lew Armistead. The companies in his battalion were: The Franklin Fire Eaters, The Pig River Grays, The Ladies' Guard (a bunch of real casanovas here haha), The Pittsylvania Life Guards... some of these men came from the 42nd and 195th VA militia's.

                        Sorry for the off topic I'm just really interested in finding more about these specific militia companies.
                        A resource which will be invaluable will be the book, Guide to Virginia Military Organizations 1861-1865 (Virginia Regimental Hist Ser) by Lee Wallace. 1986. While this book does not have detailed information on each particular unit...it does catalog ALL the Virginia Companies, Battalions, and Regiments of the War...having a few details about each, such as where they formed and when.

                        A note on Pittsylvania: Pittsylvania is a small hamlet in Halifax County, VA...which lays South West of Richmond City.
                        Paul B. Boulden Jr.


                        RAH VA MIL '04
                        (Loblolly Mess)
                        [URL="http://23rdva.netfirms.com/welcome.htm"]23rd VA Vol. Regt.[/URL]
                        [URL="http://www.virginiaregiment.org/The_Virginia_Regiment/Home.html"]Waggoner's Company of the Virginia Regiment [/URL]

                        [URL="http://www.military-historians.org/"]Company of Military Historians[/URL]
                        [URL="http://www.moc.org/site/PageServer"]Museum of the Confederacy[/URL]
                        [URL="http://www.historicsandusky.org/index.html"]Historic Sandusky [/URL]

                        Inscription Capt. Archibold Willet headstone:

                        "A span is all that we can boast, An inch or two of time, Man is but vanity and dust, In all his flower and prime."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: VA Militia Pics

                          I believe the Pittsylvania in question is pittsylvania county, as Major Keen was a Danville native.

                          I will check out that book, thank you.
                          2

                          Brett "Homer" Keen
                          Chicago
                          [I]"Excessively spirited in the pranks and mischief of the soldier"[/I]

                          OEF 03-04 [I]Truth Through Exploitation[/I]

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: VA Militia Pics

                            Originally posted by BrettKIllinois View Post
                            I believe the Pittsylvania in question is pittsylvania county, as Major Keen was a Danville native.

                            I will check out that book, thank you.
                            Good catch...but I believe we're still talking roughly the same space.

                            http://www.pittgov.org/home.htm

                            The largest county in Virginia, Pittsylvania County consists of 982.89 square miles. Situated in the south-central Piedmont plateau region, the land is rolling to hilly with elevations averaging from 400 to 800 feet above sea level. The highest point in the county is Smith Mountain which is 2,043 feet high.

                            The county borders North Carolina and is adjacent to the city of Danville. Chatham, the county seat, is 140 miles from Richmond, 68 miles from Roanoke, 50 miles from Lynchburg, and 96 miles from Raleigh, North Carolina.

                            The county was formed in 1767 from Halifax County and assumed its present boundaries in 1777. It was named for William Pitt, First Earl of Chatham, a British Statesman who served as Prime Minister of Great Britain from 1766 to 1768.
                            Paul B. Boulden Jr.


                            RAH VA MIL '04
                            (Loblolly Mess)
                            [URL="http://23rdva.netfirms.com/welcome.htm"]23rd VA Vol. Regt.[/URL]
                            [URL="http://www.virginiaregiment.org/The_Virginia_Regiment/Home.html"]Waggoner's Company of the Virginia Regiment [/URL]

                            [URL="http://www.military-historians.org/"]Company of Military Historians[/URL]
                            [URL="http://www.moc.org/site/PageServer"]Museum of the Confederacy[/URL]
                            [URL="http://www.historicsandusky.org/index.html"]Historic Sandusky [/URL]

                            Inscription Capt. Archibold Willet headstone:

                            "A span is all that we can boast, An inch or two of time, Man is but vanity and dust, In all his flower and prime."

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: VA Militia Pics

                              This is a GREAT discussion...to make it a little more fun:

                              The man on the far right is believe to be one of the men I am researching (John Creech). The reason I know this, my grandmother currenly has a similar photo as well as several other photos taken of him in this same outfit on that day.

                              Thanks for the info!
                              You can understand my interest in this portrayal: My ancestors from this organization
                              John Creech; Issac and John Collier, Elkanah, Francis, James, and John B Gilly
                              Last edited by lukegilly13; 12-08-2008, 07:17 PM.
                              Luke Gilly
                              Breckinridge Greys
                              Lodge 661 F&AM


                              "May the grass grow long on the road to hell." --an Irish toast

                              Comment

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