This new page of the Men of the 18th Louisiana Infantry Regiment is being added to display some letters written by men who served in the 18th Regiment to home, newspapers, etc. while in Camp Moore as well as from diaries. It is the hope of this researcher that by placing this material here, that others will come forward and add their treasured letters, diary excerpts, etc. to this page. The overall goal is to paint a picture, as you might say, of the MEN of this regiment from Louisiana who left home and embarked on a quest, an adventure and what turned out to be a long, bloody conflict in which many did not return. Those that did return home were forever changed by their experiences of the great American Civil War. The first group of letters show the nieve attitude that was common to the new, raw recruit who was leaving home, probably for the very first time. This attitude would forever change in the coming months and years.
Should you, the reader have any additional information to add, please do so by contacting this researcher at the e-mail addres listed below. Thank you for visiting my web site devoted to the MEN of the 18th Louisiana Infantry Regiment.
You can click on the appropriate link below to be taken directly to the section that you are interested in -- OR -- scrowl down and view each letter/document at your liesure.
Letters from Eraste Guidry, Co. F. to his Sisters
Volunteers at Camp Moore
The Men in the Photo at Camp Moore
Foreign Correspondent -- Mr. William H. Russel
Fred Tabor, Pvt., Co. A, St. James Rifles (St. James)
Thomas Bellow, Pvt., Co. E., Chasseurs St. Jacques, (St. James)
Extracts of the Reminiscences of Silas T. Grisamore
The Letters of Eraste Guidry
Eraste Guidry's Letters to his sisters: Emilie & Azema
Eraste Guidry served with Co. F., Acadian Guards, Lafayette Parish.
Guidry, Eraste, Pvt. Co. F, 18th La. Inf. En. Oct. 5, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present on Rolls to Feb., 1862. List dated Camp near Corinth, Miss., Hdqrs., April 28, 1862, Wounded. Rolls from May, 1862, to Aug., 1862, Present.
TRANSLATION OF ERASTE GUIDRY'S LETTER TO HIS SISTER
in today's English
Corinth Mississippi April 2, 1862
My dear Sister:
Behold, I received your letter some time back. You find that
I delay before answering you, but it is not anything of my fault.
I have taken time to cook my food (meal).
We are nearly always working. Now we are making (building) the fortifications around Corinth in case of attack. But, I do
not believe that they will arrive at (reach) Corinth. I believe
that we will attack. We leave tomorrow. Our regiment with nine
or ten other regiments. I guess it is to go meet them (the damn Yankees).
I know that Breaux has also left. Tell Azema to take Courage. There is nothing that has happened here in some months. She will have him near her again. If he left, it is in order to do a very
good other thing.
When you see Mrs. St. Jean give her my adieus. Tell her that
I still have the precious gift that she made for me and that I hope
to return with it. I saw that the fire and the balls (cannon balls
& bullets) did me nothing and I hope that God will preserve me a second time.
My adieus to all the family. Kiss Aurore Rosa.
Your devoted brother,
s/ Eraste Guidry
(This translation courtesy of my good friend Francis N. Mouillé)
Pollard, Alabama 22 June 1862
My dear Sisters
Emilie & Azema
I received your two letters. Alas, I have some time. I don't have your answers yet. But it is time that I not miss the occasion. When I received your letters I was at the hospital sick. But now I am well and I have rejoined my company and I am disposed perfectly well. It is not that the nourishment is short. We have almost nothing to eat. But, that is not anything we are accustomed to now.
Everything is exhorbitant. The melons that we were in the habit of paying 15¢ & 20¢ for, we pay $3.00 for. A gallon of molasses 2.50. And when for clothes and shoes, in proportion.
I see that they have brought a substitute for Breaux. I think that he is now returned and that as you say, happy to have this behind him. As for me, I hope to finish the war if the Yankees don't break my head.
I am told that Emelie is to marry. I pray you Emelie to not marry before the war finishes. I tell you to view marriage like your last sister. Her fiancee had the luck to be discharged in order to get married.
It is Gerracin who told me that you were promised to Cleobule his brother.
I saw with pleasure that you had my news. I had the pleasure of seeing Breaux
after which I saw that he resembled me which I know you have all seen. I have cheeks like he has. It is not fair with me that he remains so, then I return I see him throw the other parts/party on ones back. I also knew that the College of Grand Coteau is broke. Tell Omer and Edgar to keep quiet that they won't be 18 years old. When, as for me, I am accustomed now, but after all I would be very content to be near my family than to be in the pine forest of Alabama where one doesn't see anything but pine trees and one has nothing to eat. I am nearly accustomed. On my return I believe that I could live without food. My adieus to Mamma, Breaux, Pite, and also to all your family. Tell Orare and Roza to be quiet about the plans for me.
Emelie you clasp the hand of my sweetheart for me when you se her and at the same time my adieus.
Your brother Devoted brother
I forgot to tell you also that this morning I had a magnificent breakfast. We were five. We had 4 small chickens which still followed their mother. They were a little skinny but we didn't pay attention to that. They cost us $2.00.
I had the chance to buy this morning 4 small bits (links) of sausage which probably will make me my supper (be my supper). They cost me $1.00. Tomorrow morning I think that I am going to eat lunch with heart and also dinner and supper.
Excuse my scribble on my knees which serve me as tables.
Volunteers at Camp Moore
The above image was taken in 1861 at Camp Moore, Tangipaho, Louisiana.The men who are pictured from left to right in the photo are: Amos Roussel is sitting down grinding coffee. Arthur Roman is the man doing the washing. Thomas Russell is the man reading the newspaper. The man sitting next to him is Octave Babin. The fifth man writing the letter on the box is Emile Naquin. Three men appear to be from the 4th Louisiana Infantry Regiment [Volunteers], while the other two appear to be from the 5th Louisiana Infantry Regiment [Volunteers] and the 18th Louisiana Infantry Regiment [Volunteers].
The 4th Louisiana was formed at Camp Moore on May 25, 1861 and later returned to Camp Moore with General John C. Breckinridge's army in July, 1861. The 5th Louisiana was formed at Camp Moore on June 4, 1861. Letters written by one of the men of the "Delta Rifles" (became Company C, 4th Louisiana Regiment) states that both the 4th and 5th Regiment along with other regiments were at Camp Moore at this time.This would account for four of the men being at Camp Moore at the same time in 1861, with the exception of Emile Naquin who is not shown as having been at Camp Moore until October, 1861.
The only explaination this researcher can offer is that some units who reported to Camp Moore after enlisting for twelve months were informed that they would have to extend their enlistment for the duration of the war. Some units were disbanded and sent home for refusing to accept these new condition of enlistment. (Note: See letter by William H. Russel, [who was at Camp Moore on May 25, 1861] of the London Times below.) Either way, the Records, by Booth list the following men who match the names as closely as possible in that time frame. Any suggestions as to corrections to this "assumption" would be gladly accepted by this researcher.
The Men in the Photo at Camp Moore
Roussel, L. Amos,Pvt. Co. E, 4th La. Inf. En. May 25, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present on all Rolls to Feb., 1862. Rolls Dec., 1862, to Feb., 1863, Present. Rolls Aug. 31, 1864, to Feb. 28, 1865, Absent, wounded July 28, 1864. Absent in consequence. Rolls of Prisoners of War, C. S. A., Paroled Franklin, La., June 10, 1865. Res. Lafourche Par., La.
Roman, Arthur,Pvt. 1st Sergt. Co. E, 4th La. Inf. En. May 25, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present on all Rolls to Dec., 1861. Rolls Jan., 1862, to Dec., 1862, Absent, sick. Rolls Dec. 31, 1862, to June, 1862, Present. On Hospl. Register, Admitted July 9, 1863, to 1st Miss. C. S. A. Hospl., Jackson, Miss. Sent to Gen. Hospl., July 10, 1863. Rolls Sept., 1863, to Dec., 1863. Present. Rolls May 1, 1864, to April 80, 1865, Absent, wounded, May 22, 1864. Absent in consequence.
Russell, Thomas J.,Pvt. Co. C, 5th La. Inf. En. June 4, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present or absent not stated on Rolls to Aug., 1861. Rolls Sept., 1861, to Oct., 1863, Present. Rolls Nov., 1863, to April, 1864, Absent, taken Prisoner at Rappahannock Station, Nov. 7, 1863. Federal Rolls of Prisoners of War, Captured Rappahannock Station, Va., [p.420] Nov. 7, 1863. Recd. at Pt. Lookout, Md., from Washington, D. C., Nov. 11, 1863. Paroled until exchanged Pt. Lookout, Md., March 10, 1864. Recd. City Pt., Va., March 15, 1864. Roll dated Nov. 1, 1864, Absent, taken Prisoner at Fishers Hill, Sept. 22, 1864. Federal Rolls of Prisoners of War, Captured Fishers Hill, Sept. 22, 1864. Recd. Pt. Lookout, Md., from Harpers Ferry, Oct. 3, 1864. Paroled at Pt. Lookout, Md. Transferred for exchange. Exchanged at Coxes Landing, James River, Va., Feb. 14-15, 1865. Roll of Prisoners of War, C. S. A., Paroled Natchitoches, La., June 6, 1865. Res. New Orleans, La., born Louisiana, occupation clerk, Res. New Orleans, La., age when enlisted 17, single.
Babin, Octave, Pvt. Co. E. 4th La. Infty. En. May 25th, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present on All Rolls to Dec., 1863. Roll for July and Aug., 1864, Wounded July 28th. 1864 (Battle of Ezra Church...j_richard). Died from Effects of Wounds Recd.
Naquin, J. Emile, Corpl. Co. G, 18th La. Inf. En. Oct. 5, 1861, Camp Moore, La. Present on Rolls to Oct. 31, 1861. Roll for Nov. and Dec., 1861, Present. Promoted 1st Corpl. from 3rd Corpl., Dec. 17, 1861. Roll for Jan. and Feb., 1862, Present. Rolls from May, 1862, to Aug., 1862, Absent, 60 days, from April 1, accidental gun shot wound. Roll for Jan. and Feb., 1863, Absent without leave commencing Nov. 3, 1862. Roll for July and Aug., 1863, Present. Joined the company from Desertion, July 1, 1863, having been absent since Oct. 27, 1862. Also borne on Rolls of Co. F, Cons. 18th Regt. and Yellow Jacket Battn. La. Inf., Pvt. Roll for Jan. and Feb., 1864, Present. On Roll of Prisoners of War of furloughed and detailed men, Confed. States Army, Paroled at Shreveport, La., June 7, 1865. Res. Lafourche Par., La.
The photo appears in the following two books (that this researcher is aware of) and Emile Naquin is identified in a somewhat different manner. In one book, Photographic History of the Civil War, Vol. 7-8, edited by Francis Trevelyan Miller the men are named: Emil Vaquin, Arthur Roman, Thomas Russel, Amos Russel and Octave Babin. In the second book, The Story of Camp Moore and Life at Camp Moore Among the Volunteers, by Powell A. Casey, the men are identified from left to right as: Emil Naquin, Arthur Roman, Thomas Russell, Amos Russell, and Octave Babin with the photo being identified as being taken in 1862.
Foreign Correspondent -- Mr. William H. Russel
No. 1. The first except is from a foreign correspondent, Mr. William H. Russel, of the London Times. His visit to Camp Moore was on May 25--26, 1861 and was printed in his book, The Civil War in America, 1861. He gives the reader an "outsiders" insight into the soldiers' life at the training camp where many of the men from Louisiana received their basic training ...Camp Moore.
In May, 1861, William H. Russell, a correspondent of the London Times, visited Camp Moore, and in his book The Civil War in America, published in 1861, gave his view of the camp as follows:
"May 25. ...A vist to the camp at Tangipaho, about fifty miles from New Orleans gave an occasion for obtaining a clearer view of the internal military condition of those forces of which one reads much, and sees so little, than any other way. Major General Lewis of the State Militia, and staff , and General Labuzan , a Creole officer , attended by Major Ranney , President of the New Orleans , Jackson and Great Northern Railway, and by many officers in uniform, started with that purpose at 4:30 this evening in a rail carriage, carefully and comfortably fitted for their reception. The militia of Louisiana has not been called out for many years, and its officers have no military experience. and the men have no drill or discipline..., at Pass Manchac we passed a long string of cars filled with half a regiment of volunteers who had been enlisted for twelve months service, and now refused to be mustered in for the war , as required by the recent enactment of the Montgomery Congress.
Towards nine o'clock the special car rests in the woods , and is flanked on one side by the tents and watchfires of a small encampment, chiefly of navy and cotton-handling Milesian volunteers, called the 'tigers' from their prehensile powers and predatory habits.... We make our way to the hotel, which looms up in the moonlight in a two-storied dignity....
Through a shady dingle a winding path lead to the camp, and, after trudging a pleasant half-mile, a bridge of boards. resting on a couple of trees laid across a pool, was passed, and, above a slight embankment, tents and soldiers are revealed upon a 'clearing' of some thirty acres in the midst of a pine forest. Turning to the left we reach a double row of tents, only distinguished from the rest by their 'fly roofs' and boarded floors, and, in the centre, halt opposite to one which a poster of capitals on a planed deal marked as 'Headquarters.' Major General Tracy commands the camp. The white tents crouching close to the pines, the parade alive with groups and colors as various as those of Joseph's coat, arms stacked here and there, and occasionally the march of a double file in green, or in mazarine blue, up an alley from the interior of the wood, to be dismissed in the open camp, resembles a militia muster, or a holiday experiment of soldering, rather than the dark shadow of forthcoming battle. The cordon of sentinels suffer no Volunteer to leave the precincts of the camp, even to bathe, without a pass or the word. There are neither wagons or ambulances, and the men are rolling in barrels of bacon and bread and shouldering bags of pulse... good picnic practice and campaigning gymnastics in fair weather.
The arms of these Volunteers are the old United States smoothbore musket, altered from flint to percussion, with bayonet.. .a heavy and obsolete copy of Brown Bess in bright barrels. All are in creditable order. Most of them have never been used, even to fire a parade volley, for powder is scarce in the Confederate States, and must not be wasted. Except in their material the shoes of the troops are as varied as their clothing. None have as yet been served out, and each still wears the boots, the brogans, the patent leathers, or the Oxford ties in which he enlisted. The tents have mostly no other floor than the earth, and that rarely swept; while blankets, boxes, and utensils are stowed in corners with a disregard of symmetry that would drive a martinet mad. Camp stools are rare and tables invisible, save here and there in an officer's tent. Still the men look well, and, we are told, would doubtless present a more cheerful appearance, but for some little demoralization occasioned by discontent at the repeated changes in the organic structure of the regiments, arising from misapprehensions between the State and Federal authorities, as well as from some favoritism toward certain officers, effected by political wirepuiling in the governing councils. The system of electing officers by ballot has made the camp as thoroughly a political arena as the poll districts in New Orleans before an election, and thus many heroes, seemingly ambitious of epaulettes, are in reality only laying pipes for the attainment of civil power or distinction after the war.
The volunteers we met at Manshac the previous evening had been enlisted by the State to serve for twelve months, and had refused to extend their engagement for the war---a condition now made precedent at Montgomery to their being mustered into the army of the Confederate States. Another company, a majority of whom persist in the same refusal, were disbanded while we were patrolling the camp, and an officer told one of the party he had suffered a loss of six hundred volunteers by this disintegrating process within the last twenty four hours. Some of these country companies were skilled in the use of the rifle, and most of them had made pecuniary sacrifices in the way of time, journeys, and equipment. Our informant deplored this reduction of volunteers, as tending to engender dissaffection in the parishes to which they will return and comfort when known to the Abolitionists of the North. He added that the war will not perhaps last a twelve months, and if unhappily prolonged beyond that period, the probabilities are in favor of the short term recruits willingly consenting to a reenlistment.
The encampment of the 'Perret Guards' was worthy of a visit. Here was a company of professional gamblers, one hundred and twelve strong, recruited for the war in a moment of banter by one of the patriarchs of the fraternity... .The Guards are uniformed in 'nazarine blue flannel with red facings, and the captain, a youngish looking fellow, with a hawk's eye, who has seen service with Scott in Mexico and Walker in Nicaragua, informed us that there is not a pair of shoes in the company that cost less than six dollars , and that no money has been spared to perfect their other appointments... .The Guards are the model company of Camp Moore.
From the lower camp we wind through tents, which diminish in neatness and cleanliness as we advance deeper, to the Upper Division, which is styled 'Camp Tracy', a newer formation, whose brooms have been employed with corresponding success. The adjutant's report for the day sums up one thousand and seventy three rank and file, and but two on the sick list. On a platform, a desk beneath the shade of the grove holds a bible and prayer-book, that await the arrival at ten o'clock of the Methodist preacher; who is to perform divine service. The green uniforms of the 'Hibernian Guards' and the gray and light blue dress of other companies, appertain to a better appointed sort of men than the Lower District.
There may be two thousand men in Camp Moore...not more, and yet every authority gives us a different figure. The lowest estimate acknowledged for the two camps is three thousand five hundred men, and the Picayune and other New Orleans newspapers still speak in glowing terms of the five thousand heroes assembled in Tangipaho. Although the muster there presents a tolerable show of ball stoppers, it would require months of discipline to enable them to pass for soldiers even at the North; and besides that General Tracy has never had other experience than in militia duty, there is not I think, a single West Point officer in his whole command. The only hope of shaping such raw material to the purpose of war, would naturally be by the admixture of a proper allowance of military experience, and until those possessing it shall be awarded to Camp Moore we must sigh over the delusion, which pictures the denizens to the good people of New Orleans as 'fellows ready for the fray.'
While the hampers are being ransacked an express locomotive arrives from town with dispatches for General Tracy, who exclaims when reading them, 'Always too late!' from which expression it is inferred that orders have been received to accept the just disbanded volunteers. The locomotive was hitched to the car and drew it back to the city." [Russell, Win. H., The Civil War in America. (Boston; Gardner A. Fuller; 1861) pp. 132-39]
Fred Tabor, Pvt., Co. A, St. James Rifles (St. James)
No. 2. The next series of extracts from letter home are written by Fred Tabor, Pvt., Co. A, St. James Rifles (St. James) and are written to his parents and sister while Mr. Tabor was in basic training with the 18th Regiment Louisiana Infantry (Volunteers) at Camp Moore. The letters are dated in September-October, 1861.
Extracts from letters of Fred H. Taber (Louisiana State University Archives, Fred H. Taber Papers. A&emdash;57)
September 12, 1861
You ask me how I like camp life. Well, I will tell you we have better meat here than you have in St. James. In the second place we have ice water or coffee. I was cook last Tuesday and the Capt. said that he had not tasted better coffee since he left home. My letters are not read by; any of the officers. . . .The drum is beating to ranks. Address St. James Rifles, Camp Moore."
September 24, 1861
We heard this morning that there was 24,000 Federals at Biloxi with 4 ships. How true, I do not know. I am cook today. We have received our overcoats and they are almost too fine for the rough work we have to do in them. Tell Edgar that Enouch has been sick ever since I have been back. We have six or seven of our company in the hospital with the fever and captain won't allow any of us to ge see them. Which kind of fever is it? I for one cant tell. The captain has "forbidden that we say anything about sickness in camp. . . ."
September 29, 1862
E . Jacob arrived here today with a lot of freight and letters. I got the box and _______ Mother and Lilly sent us. It came in the nick of time as the home made biscuits are a lot better than ship biscuits. The cake and candy was real nice. I never eat better in my life.
I was on guard duty from seven o'clock yesterday morning until nine 'o'clock this morning. It was picket guard two miles from camp. I do not know what I would have done without my capeaux for it has been very cold indeed here for the last four or five days but more particularly at night. We have a holiday every Sunday afternoon by the order of the general (Tracy) . He said it is enough to drill in the week and therefore we ought to rest on Sunday. I think that very kind of him. Do you not think so too.
Mother says that she thinks that you would come to see me. Come if you can but I could not keep you with me all night as it is against the rules of the camp for any citizen to be in camp after the tattoo is beaten which is done at 8-1/2 o'clock p.m.
I asked the general yesterday if he thought that we would be sent out of the State and he said that he did not think especially about it but he knows that we wouldn't be for he has had orders to keep us in readiness at a moments notice from the Governor. They have had the telegraph extended to his headquarters at the camp from the city. So you see that we are not going out of the State whatever to the contrary that Emile Jacob might have told you up in St. James about our going to Kentucky...."
October 4, 1861
My Dear Parents--
We are going to the city but the captain does not want it known up in St. James. So don't write to me anymore. The General has given us orders to be ready twenty four hours after he receives orders from the Governor which he get at any moment. Therefore he will allow anyone to leave camp except to take down freight and supplies to the picket guard . . . .
I was cook today and we had soup and stew for dinner. Day before yesterday the Captain made me eat dinner with him when I had some turtle soup, turkey, and chicken. For dessert I had preserves, some good butter and bread and coffee. . . Last night we had to go to bed without supper and there was a lot of grumbling amoung us.
Mouton was elected colonel...."
Thomas Bellow, Pvt., Co. E., Chasseurs St. Jacques, (St. James).
No. 3. The following series of letters are by Thomas Bellow, Pvt., Co. E., Chasseurs St. Jacques, (St. James). The letters were signed "T. B." and were written to the editor of the weekly newspaper Meschacebe. The letters are dated from September 12--October 12, 1861.
Letters written from Camp Moore to the weekly newspaper Meschacebe or to Eugene Dumez  its editor, between September 12 and October 12, 1861, by 'T.B.", a soldier in the Chasseurs St. Jacques. Company E, Eighteenth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers (from a microfilm of the newspaper in the LSU Library; translated by Mrs. Margaret F. Dalrymple).
12 September 1861
"My dear Dumez,
"It is while seated on the bank of a little creek that bounds our camp to the west that I am scribbling these lines to you. Let's go back a little.
"We arrived in town Thursday evening about ten o'clock; we were received in a very fraternal manner by the Orleans Guards [Gardes d'Orle'ans] , who led us to their arsenal, wehere they had prepared a punch for us, which was thirstily absorbed by the parched throats of the Chasseurs. One of the Orleans Guards in a toast predicted to us that we would be decimated because we had in our ranks the "aim".
"It was not until the time came to go to bed that I began to taste the pleasures of a soldier's life. I was cosily stretched out on my bed and dreamed that I was drilling some Yankees. At four o'clock in the morning, I was awakened by a pleasant roll of a drum. We had an excellent breakfast (another courtesy of the Gardes d'Orle'ans), then we set in march to get ourselves to the wagon depot. We did not leave, and I don't know exactly why, until nine&emdash;thirty for the camp. We were saluted all along the route, and we arrived here about four o'clock, faithfully escorted by a beating and refreshing rain. Then we set up our tents and settled down as well as possible.
"The camp is rather vast and offers a fine parade ground. It is an elevated place, which means that, despite the daily rains, we have no mud. We are one mile to the east, of the Town of Tangipahoa and a half-mile west of the river of the same name. General Tracy is commandant of the camp. There are about
1,000 to 1,200 soldiers here. On the western boundary of the camp are found some restaurants, shops, canteen, etc., etc.
"Yesterday I was on guard duty in the village, which makes it possible for me to give you a little description . The streets are laid out, several even have names; but, for the most part, the houses shine by their absence. There are many shops, groceries, and a hotel. Business is really flourishing, and whatever place you enter, you are sure to find everything, except what you ask for. Yesterday evening, our [commanding] officer having allowed us to leave the guard corps, I went for a walk with one of the Chasseurs. We stopped before a fine-looking grocery. A charming woman presented herself and invited us to come in while asking us what we wanted. We asked for some sardines. All gone. Butter. All gone. Cheese. All gone. Finally we ran through the entire gamut of groceries both imaginable and unimaginable, and we left with a piece of bread that must have barely seen the oven. We went a little further and saw written on a board 'Groceries and Provisions of all Kinds.' We entered; it was a dealer in old beds. Far from being discouraged, we were developing a taste for this business. A little further , we saw a kind of canteen where was written in red letters 'Soda Water & Coffee.' We entered. No barkeeper . We waited ten minutes, a quarter of an hour . My word, since no one came, we served ourselves, promising ourselves not to pay in order to punish the proprietor for having made us wait. This morning, when we had finished mounting guard, we went back there, and since the barkeeper was still absent we repeated the same manoeuvre. One must take the rough with the smooth. To tell the whole truth, the Tangipahoans seem to me as lazy as lizards. But to render unto Caesar what is Caesar's, the Tangipahoa women are as beautiful as Creoles .
"We are living on pork and biscuits; sometimes we have some fresh meat. One anomaly that I had not considered is that, living in the middle of pines, we can't eat bread .
"Honore' and I are getting visibly fat, and we have never felt better. Finally, we are happy. For me, I regret only one thing--not having come sooner.
"Fe'lix and Numa are doing well. Arse'ne Breaud is tireless; he distinguishes himself above all by his culinary talents. I forgot to tell you that we do our own cooking--soldiers in every sense of the word. The other men from our area are fine.
"To the Meschace'be'
"17 September 1861
"Everything moves briskly in the camp, and we are beginning to acquire the symmetry of movement and the mechanical perfection that are the principal qualities of the soldier. In the morning, we have exercises from nine o'clock until eleven-thirty; in the afternoon, battalion exercise from five o'clock until six-thirty, under the command of General Tracy. Captain Roman will command the battalion exercise this evening.
"Now here is how we mount guard. We take fifteen men that are divided into three groups of five. Each group is sent out and posted with a distance between each man. The group is relieved every two hours, and the entire guard is replaced at the end of twenty-four hours. Beaver Creek, with which I have already acquainted you and near which I myself was on guard, well deserves the reputation it enjoys for the rapidity and 'clearness of its waters. But its banks are populated with mosquitoes, whatever anyone says, and mosquitoes that seem especially spoiled by Creole blood . They have really made a treaty of offensive alliance with Lincoln, unless, being no less devoted than we to the common nation that makes them live at our expense, they have undertaken to keep us in a state of alertness and to prevent us from attaining a dangerous sleep.
"Would you like a description of our interior, or our furniture? We have a board for a bed- -a bed of high vegetation--and our military sack for a pillow. I think we sleep as well on this pillow as the old French skeptic Montaigne slept on his pillow of doubt, because we have faith that we are serving our country. The same thought makes us accept the diet happily: pork in the morning, beefsteak at noon, coffee and biscuit in the evening . Today the cooks are Samuel Lorio, from St. Charles, Honore', and I. The small number of dishes in use in camp life certainly has its charm also, even if this might not be the charm of novelty. We take the extra dishes to the restaurant, which allows us to keep a well&emdash;lined purse , more or less&emdash;-and one's purse has to be passably well-lined , because the restaurants here don't post their prices at the door for everyone to see.
"With all that , the troops enjoy excellent health. Except for the hours of duty, we play games. The favorite game is bouchon. There are some soldiers who excel in it, notably a soldier from St. John Baptist, who won some fine prizes and used them for a party in the aristocratic restaurants of this place.
"There are now about 2,000 men in the camp, and new companies arrive every day. We ask ourselves where we will be sent, but we don't know much more about it than you do. The opinion is , however, that we shall have the honor of defending Louisiana and of sweeping out the first Yankees who present themselves. We are ready.
"I am going back a little to my last letter, where I'm afraid I got the points of the compass mixed up. Beaver Creek runs to the south of the camp. It is there that we draw water for cooking; this water also serves us for drinking. For my part, I consume at least two gallons a day, I'm made so thirsty by the 'pork and biscuit.'
"As for springs, they exist for me [only] in the state of the philosopher's stone. It is true that I have never been far from camp. Every time I want to go beyond the boundaries , I meet an exclamation point that we call a sentinal, who seems to have been placed there for the sole purpose of saying to me, "You cannot pass!" This simple apostrophe certainly would not suffice to stop me, were it not accompanied by a mechanical movement that puts you face to face with a respectable but dangerous instrument.
"I have visited the Tangipahoa River, which is a mile from camp. To get there, it is necessary to 'cross a half dozen little streams, almost all chocked with dead trees, and which race-&emdash;not the trees-&emdash;on hasty feet in the forest, making turns to the left, then half-turns to the right, and a bunch of other turns more or less military- -finishing up by coming in to alignment with the Tangipahoa. Let's talk about that. It is really a charming little river, which makes as many turns and detours as its little tributaries. The environs, although uncultivated, seem very fertile. One finds there magnolias, holly trees, wild olives, etc. On the banks, the trees dip their green leaves in the cold, clear water. In several places, you can see the bottom of the river, which is covered with little pebbles. Tell the poets who adorn the first page of the Meschace'be' with their products to come here to court the muse; everything inspires it. As for me, if I had found an Eve, I would believe myself to be in an earthly paradise. But alas, one sees only Irish and German women, who have the masculine habit of smoking...and the rest.
"The banks of the streams is covered almost everywhere with a yellow sand that miraculously replaces soap. If I come back from the war, I want to establish here a factory to make pumice soap. With the little pebbles of the Tangipahoa, I shall make gun flints. There are several fortunes in my head.
"They are sounding recall.
"To the Meschace'be'
"22 September 1861
"Yesterday I was charged with the agreeable function of cook. Although I do not recall having exercised this profession during the last twenty years of my life, I accomplished my task to my complete satisfaction. Was the same true for those who consumed the meal? Alas.. .during the solemn operation of chewing and swallowing, I thought I saw several faces reflect clear signs of disappointment. --I am now convinced of one thing: it is that the proverb 'cobblers are the worse shod' does not apply to cooks; I have not eaten so well since I arrived here. During the cooking, I tasted so much to assure myself that everything was going well that when the time for the meal arrived I was absolutely incapable of participating in it and generously abandoned my share to the others.
"I am also the laundryman; --this profession has less charm than the other. I replace the beater with a shoe brush. Last week, I was washing a shirt; finding that the brush was not removing the accumulation of pork grease and dust quickly enough, I took some yellow sand and obtained the most satisfactory results. But the next day, when I put on this shirt, upon which the eye of the finest laundress could not have found a spot, I experienced an itching that was less than agreeable. I thought for a moment that all the little animals usually resident in neglected heads of hair had chosen to live on my back. Immediately removing this inconvenient garment, I shook it vigorously, and then I saw what happens in the desert after a gust of wind,&emdash;&emdash;there fell a rain of sand.
"I was on guard again last Sunday. This time, they placed me on one of the numerous roads that lead to the village. I passed my twenty-four hours happily enough. I had around me a magnificient tableau: pines so tall they made me dream of the ends of the earth; laurels and oaks on which the squirrels were playing; great dead trees upon which the woodpeckers were climbing and making drum rolls with their beaks that the famous Rosas himself would have envied. In the leaves were birds of all sorts, except for the mockingbird, which seems too civilized in inhabit this lost country. In the afternoon, we had some rain, but we didn't suffer thanks to the foresight of our captain, who furnished us with great rubber coats. During the night, I was disturbed only by the plaintive cries of the owls and by the barking of the village dogs, who were no doubt flirting with some lovely in amorous ardor .
"Since our diet is of a uniformity and a monotony that hardly stimulates the appetite, we often go to 'Aunty's' for a diversion. ' Aunty' is the round and powerful hostess of the most popular restaurant in Camp Moore. Everything is in order at her place. The tables are solidly settled on barrels; the candles, whose number is always strictly limited to the needs of the moment, are set in the necks of bottles.
The system of illumination, unknown in ancient times, frequently occasions some burlesque scenes. Yesterday evening, our little group was eating an excellent chicken gumbo made with ham and beef. Suddenly, we found ourselves in complete darkness. The candle had disappeared as if by enchantment. 'Aunty,' who shares all the superstitions of her noble race, thought that the devil was trying to enter her establishment, but she was soon reassured by 'Uncle Henry,' her associate, who arrived with a light. We made an investigation and found our candle at the bottom of the bottle that served as our candelabra.
"We are having six hours of exercises a day. Our captain, who since our arrival has smiled only with his forehead, now begins to smile with his lips&emdash;&emdash;proof that we are making progress.
"Our battalion or regiment is not yet organized in a permanent fashion. While waiting, our Captain Roman fills the functions of major, Lieutenant E. Jacob those of adjutant-major, and our sergeant Ed. Barthe'lemy those of sergeant-major.
"We receive your newspaper regularly.
"Everything goes well.
"P.S. I am sending you enclosed the list of the St. James Carbines."
"To the Meschace'be'
"29 September 1861
"Our Creole battalion is finally organized. Captain Alfred Mouton1  is lieutenant-colonel and Captain Roman, major. The adjutant-major and the sergeant-major are not yet named. The nominations of messieurs Mouton and Roman seem to have satisfied the unanimous wishes of all the companies. If the high intelligence and the military talents of Monsieur Mouton were not already well established, his giant height, his herculean torso, and his stentorian voice would suffice to inspire the confidence of the most timid. Monsieur Mouton is the chief of the brave men who banished the brigands of the Attakapas. As for our major, he is well known.
"Here is the list of the companies that compose the battation:
1st Company, St. James Chasseurs. You know the officers (94 soldiers).
"2nd Company, St. James Carbines. The officers are also known to you (78 men; five have joined since I sent you the list) .
"3rd Company, Acadian Guards, Captain A. Mouton, now lieutenant-colonel; 1st lieutenant, Win. Mouton; 2nd lieutenant, F. T. Comeau; 2nd lieutenant, junior, Arthur Bailey (77 men) .
"4th Company, St. Landry's Volunteers, Captain Garland; 1st lieutenant, C. D. Bullard; 2nd lieutenant, L. Jacob Auselin; 2nd lieutenant, junior, Ad. Debuillon (100 men).
"5th Company, Natchitoches Rebels, Captain J. D. Wood; 1st lieutenant, W. B. Owens; 2nd lieutenant, T. Lattier; 2nd lieutenant, R. Emile Cloutier (88 men).
"6th Company, Lafourche Creoles, Captain Louis Bush; 1st lieutenant J. K. Gourdain; 2nd lieutenant, John Collins; 2nd lieutenant, junior, Tucker (109 men).
"Besides these six companies, we are waiting for Captain Hays and a company from St. Tammany, who ought to arrive at any time.--our battalion will thus soon become a regiment.
"I reproach myself for not yet having made you acquainted with General Tracy, commander-in-chief of Camp Moore.--He is a noble old man of about sixty years and with a very respectable rotundity. His head and chin resemble the' summits of high mountains, the rest of his appearance would make the most flamboyant of the three colors of our flag seem pale.
"He acts very spry, and his short legs clamp lightly around a proud charger that must have been young twenty years ago.
"He makes his rounds every morning, on foot or on horseback. He is very polite, and his face, in spite of its angry color, radiates constant goodness. He lives in the village in a house just a couple of steps away from the corps guard. He has a parrot that amuses or annoys the sentries.
"In my last letter, I told you about Aunty. Allow me today to tell you something about her neighbor, our worthy friend Tatout.--Tatout is the proprietor of the major store of Camp Moore. He is some sort of Chinese-Frenchman who might be anywhere between 30 and 70 years old. His infernal babble is as incessant as that of the general's parrot. His store of ten square feet is built in the shape of a hen-house. On the front is a large window that raises up like a trap and reveals to astonished eyes a thousand and one articles, each one more useless than the other, but which the soldiers cannot dispense with. These articles are displayed in the most magnificent disorder. Even in the bazaar, one sees the effect of art. Pipes and tobacco lead the sardines to the oil and ham; onions fraternize with cheese and sugar, etc., etc.
"Tatout is truly a man of genius. While selling us his merchandise at five times what its worth, he manages to persuade us that he is giving them to us as half price. At Tatout's place there are always lotteries, where the tickets are sold for half the value of the objects offered as prizes. The happy mortal whom destiny favors 'cannot resell the prize that he has won for the price of his ticket.&emdash;&emdash;At Tatout's, as at Aunty's and her confreres, the bottle plays the role of chandelier. This necessary object seems completely unknown here in its natural form.
"We are all happy--each in his own way. The lovers stroll about and invent distractions in order not to think too much about their ladies; the married men and those who are indifferent to love loll in their tents or play with the little pebbles.&emdash;&emdash;We shall be called into active service as soon as we are well enough trained to get ourselves killed in a decent manner.
"The 16th Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers&emdash;&emdash;Creole Americans- -was formed last Thursday at Camp Moore. Colonel
S. S. Heard; lieutenant&emdash;colonel, Charles Jones; major, R. B. Jones; adjutant, R. Richardson; sergeant-major, Samuel C. Cuny; sergeant, T. P. Richardson; quartermaster, J. F. Sibley. 
"Tomorrow or the day after we shall have an election to find a successor to Captain Roman. Lieutenant Mire will probably get this rank, and there will be several changes in the company. We think that our sergeant, Ed. Barthe'le'my, will be named adjutant-major of the battalion.
"2 October 1861
"Among the visits that we have received in camp, I must mention those of ex-governors Roman and Mouton. The two noble veterans smiled with a look of love and pride on the sons in whom they saw themselves reborn.
"Lieutenant-Colonel Mouton and Major Roman have just arrived from New Orleans, where they were since the day before yesterday. Tomorrow we shall probably have the election of new officers, the Hays Champions from New Iberia arrived yesterday afternoon. The Lafourche Creoles are expected, and it won't be long before we have them among us.
"Among other visitors, we have again had the pleasure of seeing Messieurs Euge'ne Landaiche, Emile Roussel, --Lieutenants Morris Edrington and James Ketine, who are going to carry our military ardor back there,--Uncle Benjamin Roussel, who made his appearance with a fine  of tobacco, no doubt grown in our fertile Grande Pointe,--Monsieur Valcour Songy, who came to look for his son, who has been rather seriously ill.
"Our poor Rosas also had a grave illness. For a while we were afraid that he was not going to make the ras and the flas that are confined under the skies of Italy and of Louisiana, with the shadow of drumsticks on the shadow of a drum, and we imagined him already like that dark drummer of the German painter who came out of the dust of the plain of Waterloo at midnight and awoke with its bellicose sounds the heroic sleepers for the great battle. But health returned.
--Our doctor is the son of Dr. Gourier of Iberville. He is a young man full of talent. He returned a short while ago from Paris, where he did his studies. Some of our Chasseurs were sick, but thanks to the solicitude of our officers these indispositions were not serious. Our sick men were not sent to the common hospital.
"Confound the drum!
"CAMP MOORE.--We learned yesterday evening that the election announced by our correspondent took place Thursday. Elected were: Camille Mire, captain; Le'opold L. Armant, first lieutenant; and Edouard C. Barthe'le'my, second lieutenant. -- The officers of the Hays Champions, the 7th company of the battalion, are: J. D. Hayes, Captain; R. D. Saunders, first lieutenant; J. D. Elie, second lieutenant; Dudley Avery, second lieutenant, junior-grade. -- The battalion will bear the name Creole Battation."
"Meschace'be', October 12, 1861
"CAMP MOORE.--We have not received our correspondence from Camp Moore this week, because of the departure of the Creole Regiment for a post that has been provisionally assigned to it above Carrollton, about two miles from the river. Probably our readers will be largely compensated in the next issue.
"Before the departure from Tangipahoa, the regiment was permanently formed. There is for colonel Monsieur Alfred Mouton, for lieutenant-colonel Monsieur Alfred Roman, and for major Monsieur Louis Bush.
"The 13th Regiment, under Colonel Randell Gibson, has been sent from Camp Moore to English Turn, and they think they will be there by the fourteenth of this month.
"The 15th is still in camp, commanded by Preston Pond from East Feliciana, colonel; E. M. Hollingsworth from Caddo, lieutenant-colonel; Daniel Gober, from St. Landry, major.
Companies: Caddo Fencibles; Walker Roughs, captain Walker; Edwards Guards, captain Edwars; Pine Woods Sharp-shooters, Captain C. E. Hosea; Rapides Tigers, captain Raxdel; Evergreen Invincibles, Captain F. White; Big Cane Rifles and three other companies, captains Fuqua of East Feliciana, Thompson of St. Helena, and Mayberry.
"The Claiborne Volunteers, Captain Kennedy, and three other companies from the west of Louisiana have arrived in camp.
"Among the St. Landry Volunteers, captain Garland, there is, as a simple soldier, Monsieur Lucius Dupre', candidite for Congress for the 4th district and formerly a member of the state convention of January, 1861, for the parishes of St. Landry, Lafayette, and Calcassieu.
Extracts from the Reminiscences of Silas T. Grisamore
Extracts from reminiscences of Silas T. Grisamore, a member of the Lafourche Creoles, Company G., Eighteenth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers, from Reminiscences of Uncle Silas; A History of the Eighteenth Louisiana Infantry Regiment, edited by Arthur W. Bergeron. Jr. (Baton Rouge; Le Comite des Archives de la Louisiane; 1981):
Friday October 4  , we took passage on board the Jackson Railroad cars, and in a few hours were debarked at Camp Moore in the Piney Woods, where we immediately put up our tents, and made ourselves as comfortable as possible.
On the first view of the place we were all delighted with the prospect. The water from the cool flowing springs was delicious, the drill grounds were ample and well prepared, the surrounding groves dense and shady, whilst the pure and clear waters of the Tangipahoa furnished excellent bathing facilities, impressing upon our minds the idea that we were to have a nice time during our sojourn at this encampment.
Two or three days , however , convinced us that the whole camp was one mass of filth and corruption without any system of decency or propriety having bean inaugurated, sickness was prevailing throughout the camp, funeral processions were daily seen, followed by volleys of musketry over the bodies of those who had so early given up their lives, and the question 'when are we to be removed?' was seriously asked by all of us.
On the 5th of October our company was mustered into the service of the Confederate States, and on the same evening the 18th. La. Regiment was organized, consisting of seven companies. Alfred Mouton of Lafayette, Colonel....
On the 8th of October 1861, three days after we were mustered into the Confederate service we received orders to strike tents, and to the great satisfaction of all, we were embarked on the cars, and transported to the rear of Carrollton, 7 miles above New Orleans...."
Booth's, Volume III, Book l. records that Silas T. Grisamore, Company G , Eighteenth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers , enlisted at Camp Moore on October 15, 1861; he was eventually promoted from Sergeant to Lieutenant, to First Lieutenant, to Captain and finally, to the rank of Acting Brigade Quartermaster on January 30, 1864. Grisamore is buried in the Episcopal Church cemetery at Thibodaux.
No. 4. The following is an Extract from the first day of the Battle at Shiloh: Sunday, 6 April 1862 and describes Silas T. Grisamore's view of men going into battle for the first time, feeling the exhileration of adrenaline flow, the confusion of battle, the misunderstood devistation of modern (then) implements of war,and the of the casualities suffered by the 18th Regiment during that first days' battle:
Extract from reminiscences of Silas T. Grisamore, a member of the Lafourche Creoles, Company G., Eighteenth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers, from Reminiscences of Uncle Silas; A History of the Eighteenth Louisiana Infantry Regiment, edited by Arthur W. Bergeron. Jr. (Baton Rouge; Le Comite des Archives de la Louisiane; 1981):
Shiloh, April 6th, 1862. The morning broke with a clear and cloudless sky. As soon as the light began to drive away the darkness the report of rifles announced that our skirmisihers were moving on the enemies' lines, and by the time the sun appeared, their reports were heard from left to right the whole length of the army
After vainly endeavoring to reach the company with my wagons I left them by the road side and proceeded in search of it. During my ride forward I passed the headquarters of Gen. Beauregard[l5], who was nervousaly engaged in sending off couriers in different directions, and these of Gen. Polk, and finally those of Gen. Sidney Johnston. Here I stopped for a moment to obtain a look of the honest and solemn face of the commanding general, then advancing to glory and to death. Being directed always to the left, I hurried onward until stopped by heavy firing in my front, which proved to be an attack upon the enemy by the brigade of the subsequently famous Pat Cleburne, who after a severe and bloody contest of 30 minutes, drove the enemy from his position. Finding myself ahead of Pond's Brigade, I went towards the rear, and, finally coming up with our artillery train, I left my horse and was shortly afterwards with the members of my company. We were kept moving forward, being, I think, upon the extreme left, as I never saw any of our troops left of us, and part of the time we were on the banks of Owl Creek. Passing through the first line of the enemy's camp, we reached the second line without any engagement. Here we found ovens full of hot loaves of bread, enough to supply every man in the company with one, and some of the men finding a jar of butter, we all had a good breakfast. whilst waiting here the officers went into some of the tents and soon fitted up all the men with knives, forks, spoons, canteens, haversacks, etc., besides cigars for all who desired to smoke. Coming up to a sutler' stand, we obtained a quantity of sardines, fruits , and other good things , amply sufficient to scare away all symptoms of hunger.
By this time the battle was raging fearfully on our front and right. There was every appearance of the most complete surprise of the enemy, as we found the pots on the fire with breakfast cooking in them, the wash tubs with clothes in them, and everything topsy turvy throughout his camp. Still advancing at about one o'clock, we came up to a line of the enemy engaged with Hardee' s Division. They were in line almost perpendicular to us and as soon as we passed around a thick cluster of woods , Col. Mouton ordered our regiment to charge; the enemy immediately began to retreat and were in the act of surrendering when Hardee' s troops , seeing us advancing, began firing upon us. Our two right companies were dressed in blue, and we were taken for Yankees. Being obliged to fall back, the enemy effected his escape. By this unfortunate mistake, Capt. Huntington was mortally wounded, and Wm. Burk of our company slightly injured in the leg. We are again moved forward until about 3 o'clock, when we again came upon the enemy.
We were in line in a deep ravine standing almost perpendicular to the enemy; the Orleans Guard Battalion was on our left and the 16th La. on our right but standing so as to front the enemy.
It was rumored along the line that we were to charge the battery, and Col. Pond, coming along, remarked to Col. Mouton that "Gen. Hardee said that we must silence that battery." Immediately Col. Mouton gave the order in his loud and commanding voice, "Battalion left half wheel, march," when the regiment rushed up the side of the ravine and formed itself in an open field about 250 yards from the enemy, who was strongly posted in a line three times our length. Looking in vain on our right for the support of the 16th regiment and upon our left for the aid of the Orleans Guard Battalion, the 18th rushed forward with a loud cheer to the attack. Before we had gone 50 yards the battery opened upon us , and in our company fell Amadeo Abadie and Victor Paris. Whether any other companies suffered loss by this fire I am not able to say. This, however, did not check our advance and we proceeded onward to within 100 or 150 yards of the enemy' s line, when he opened upon us with a terrific fire of musketry. His line being thrice our length[l9], the effect of his fire immediately checked our men, who halted and returned the fire. Our campany was next to the flag of our regiment, and the bullets rang about our ears like bees swarming. Once only I looked behind me to see Col. Mouton's horse falling from under him. In our front I perceived the battery moving away and the lines of the enemy wavering, but as two thirds of his force was receiving no injury but enfilading us with terrible effect, the order to retreat was given.
As we were falling back to our original position, the 16th La. made its appearance on the top of the hill where we had expected to find it to join us in the attack. As soon as we had fallen back into the ravine, the Orleans Guard Battalion was ordered up only to be butchered as we were without effecting anything.
Reaching the ravine, I found Lieutenant Gautreau badly and Capt. Gourdain slightly wounded.
Lieut. Collins and myself gathered together the few men belonging to our company and rendered what assistance we could to the wounded. There I found Col. Mouton actually shedding tears of mortification and sorrow over the loss of the men of whom he was so proud. We were then moved backward, and, after countermarching upon a hill to our rear, we had the sad satisfaction of seeing a brigade of Hardee' s troops properly brought up and driving the enemy away. But night coming on, the battle grouud upon which our men lay was between the two lines.
We were encamped in a narrow ravine, and at dusk a small squad of us went into a neighboring sutler' s tent and procured a lot of cakes , upon which we made our supper.
Footnotes No. 1
1. During the year 1861, the newspapers in Louisiana often published detailed information concerning the assembling and movement of troops as well as valuable information as to the type an number of cannons being installed at the various fortified points around the state. Eventually the publications of this type of information was prohibited.
2. John Lawson Lewis, born in Lexington, Kentucky in 1800, came to New Orleans when still a child with his father, Judge Joshua Lewis. He was active in politics, becoming Clerk of the District Court. John L. Lewis was a member of the State Senate and Sheriff of the Parish of Orleans. In 1854 he was elected Mayor of New Oreans. For many years, Lewis had been a member of the State Militia, becoming a Major General in command of the First Division of Louisiana Militia, a position he held throughout the War. Camp Lewis in New Orleans was named for him. He died on May 15, 1886.
3. Charles Labuzan, in 1860, was a lieutenant colonel and quartermaster on the staff of the First Division of Louisiana Militia. Subsequently, he was made a brigadier general and commander of the Louisiana Legion. Under a reorganization of the Militia, the Louisiana Legion ceased to exist.
4. H. L. Ranney was president of the New Orleans, Jackson and Great Northern Railroad. A street in the Town of Tangipahoa is named for him.
5. Elisha L. Tracy was born in Virginia but moved to New Orleans about the year 1830. He acted as organizer and the first commander of the Washington Artillery of New Orleans, in 1838. Subsequently, he became commander of the Washington Battalion. At the outsbreak of the Civil War, he was commander of the First Brigade of Louisiana Militia and was placed over Camp Walker to train the volunteer companies. Tracy was placed in command of Camp Moore when it opened in May, 1861. He died there or nearby in the fall of 1862. It is not known where he is buried. In civilian life he was a public weigher.
6. The Perret Guards became Company H of the Fifth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers.
7. The official name for the entire military installation at Tangipahoa was Camp Moore. The camp was divided by the parade ground and the soldiers gave the upper tent area the unofficial name of Camp Tracy in honor of Brigadier General E. L. Tracy, the commander of Camp Moore.
l. Fred R. Taber, Private, St. James Rifles, Company A, Eighteenth Regiment Louisiana Volunteers, was admitted to the First Mississippi GSA Hospital, Jackson, Mississippi, for rheumatism, March 20, 1862; roll of February, 1863, shows him absent sick, gone home to St. James, Louisiana.
2. Jules A. Druilhet, Captain of Company A, was discharged, not being reelected, May 10, 1862.
3. Emile Jacob, First Lieutenant, Company A, was discharged, not being reelected, May 16, 1862.
4. Alfred Alexander Mouton was born in Opelousas February 18, 1829, the son of Governor Alexander Mouton. Alfred Mouton graduated from West Point, serving in the U.S. Army until he resigned; he became a Brigadier General in the Louisiana Militia. He was elected Colonel of the Eighteenth Louisiana Regiment, being wounded at Shiloh. On April 16, 1862, he was promoted to Brigadier General. Mouton commanded a brigade in Louisiana under General Richard Taylor and was killed in the Battle of Mansfield, Louisiana, on April 8, 1864. See the biography of Mouton, Acadian General by William Arceneaux.
l. The Meschacebe was a newspaper published in French at various times between 1852 and 1940 at Abbeville, BonneCarre, Edgard or Reserve in Louisiana. During the period of the letters it was published at Edgard, in St. John the Baptist Parish by Eugene Dumez. "Meschacebe" is a name, possibly Indian, and spelled "meschaccbe" for the Mississippi river which appears on Cox's c1772 map of the Carolinas reproduced on pages 44-45 of The Mississippi Basin Struggle in America between England and France 1697-1763 by Justin Winsor (Boston & New York; Houghton and Mifflin Co.; 1895).
2. Eugene Dumez was born in France in 1824 at Sante Juste, department of the Marne, the son of Captain Jean Baptiste Dumez, an officer of the 1st Empire. He came to the United States in 1854, moving to New Orleans in 1857 and shortly thereafter settling in St. John the Baptist Parish. Though he published the newspaper, he is shown on the 1860 census of that parish as being a teacher of languages, 36 years of age. His wife, Marie, born in Louisiana, was 28 years old. Living in the household was a printer and two other printers lived next door. Dumez died of yellow fever at Edgard on October 28. 1878. (Les Ecrits de Langue Francaise en Louisiane au XIXe Sie cle by Edward Larocque Tinker--Parish; Librarie Ancienne Honore Champion; 1932, p 155-57.)
3. "T. B." the writer of the letters was Thomas Bellow shown to be eighteen years of age in the census of 1860 and living in the home of Win. E. Bellow. Booth's shows him to have been a member of the Chasseurs St. Jacques, Company E, Eighteenth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers. He later became a lieutenant in the Consolidated Eighteenth Regiment and commanded a company. After the war, he became editor or co-editor of the Meschacebe.
4. In this letter Bellow is disoriented. Camp Moore was one half mile north of the Tangipahoa Station. It was bounded on the south by Beaver Creek, on the east by the Tangipahoa River and on the west by the New Orleans, Jackson and Great Northern Railroad.
5. The phrase "point de Mire" means aim or focus, its use here evidently intended as a pun since one of the company officers was named Mire.
6. "Drilling" in the sense of perforating.
7. The camp was one-half mile north of Tangipahoa Station.
8. Brigadier General Elisha L. Tracy. a brigade commander in the Louisiana Militia.
9. Evidently a play on the French words pins and pains meaning pines and bread.
10. Captain Alfred Roman, son of ex-governor A. B. Roman, who became Lieutenant Colonel of the regiment. Later he served on the staff of General P. G. T. Beauregard.
11. Lorio was a member of Company E. Honore was probably Honore Bellow, of the same Company. The 1860 census of St. John the Baptist Parish lists an "H. Bellow" age 21, a teacher.
12. The word "bouchon" means a plug or cork but the game has not been identified.
13. Alfred Mouton, born in St. Landry Parish in 1829, was the son of Alexandre Mouton, an ex-governor and former U.S. Sentor of Louisiana, He graduated from West Point in 1850 but resigned soon thereafter to become an engineer in Louisiana. He led a group of vigilantees active in the Attakapas area in the 1850's. Mouton had held a commission of brigadier general in the Louisiana Militia but with the outbreak of the Civil War organized the company of Acadian Guards from Lafayette Parish. It was incorporated in the Eighteenth Regiment of Louisiana Volunteers when it was organized at Camp Moore and he was elected colonel. He took the regiment into combat in Tennessee; he was seriously wounded in April, 1862, at the Battle of Shiloh. Shortly thereafter, he was promoted to brigadier general and, when recovered from his wounds, was sent to Louisiana where he became an excellent brigade commander. The Eighteenth Louisiana was also returned to Louisiana late in 1862 coming under Mouton's command. He was killed while leading a charge at the Battle of Mansfield in April, 1864.
14. In Camp Pulaski at Amite City, Louisiana, the so-called "Polish Brigade" was organized under direct authority of the Confederate War Deparment. It was sent to Virginia with less than two full regiments. These were filled by assigning to them separate Louisiana companies already there and the Secretary of War arbitrarily designated the two regiments as the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Regiments of Louisiana Volunteers, respectively. This required the regiments then in training to be renumbered. The regiment commanded by Colonel Preston Pond, Jr. was renumbered as the Sixteenth and that commanded by Colonel S. S. Heard was renumbered as the Seventeenth. Mouton's Battation became the Eighteenth Regiment. Order #1191 Adjutant General of Louisiana.
15. Captain E. Camille Mire.
16. The "carrot" was a wrapped bundle of about ten pounds of tobacco.
17. Not identified.
18. Leopold L. Armant, who was elected first lieutenant of the Chasseurs St. Jacques. in the reorganization of the Eighteenth Regiment after the Battle of Shiloh, became regimental commander; he was killed while bravely leading the charge of his men at Mansfield, Louisiana, in April, 1864.
19. The group of companies of which the Chasseurs St. Jacques were a part was organized as a special battalion under Order No. 1115 of the State Adjutant General dated September 24, 1861. Alfred Mouton was elected lieutenant colonel. Order No. 1176 issued October 2, 1861, expanded the battalion into a regiment and directed General Tracy to hold elections for officers.
20. Louis Bush, a native of Iberville Parish, was a representative in the Louisiana Legislature from LaFourche Parish in 1861. He organized and became captain of the Lafourche Creoles which became a company in the Eighteenth Regiment. Booth's says that at the reorganization of the regiment in 1862, he was elected lieutenant colonel, but declined the office and was dropped. Other accounts say that he commanded the regiment for a time and was then transferred to the Trans-Mississippi where he eventually headed a military court. After the war, he returned to the practice of law in LaFourche Parish but came to New Orleans in 1872, entering the commission business. He was elected to the legislature from New Orleans in the late 1870's becoming speaker of the house.
21. Lucius Jacques Dupre, born in St. Landry Parish in 1822. attended school at the University of Virginia and the University of Louisiana. He became a judge but resigned to enlist as a private in a company from his parish. He was elected to the first Confederate Congress as a representative, being reelected in 1864. After the war he practiced law in St. Landry Parish until his death in 1868.
15. General Pierre G. T. Beauregard was second-in-command to General Johnston.
16. Brigadier General Patrick R. Cleburne commanded the 2nd Brigade of Hardee's Corps. O.R., 1, x, Pt. 1, p. 383.
17. The 27th Tennessee Infantry of Cleburn's brigade was the unit which fired on the 18th. One man was killed and 3 wounded (not including Captain Huntington) by this fire. Alfred Roman, The Military Operations of General Beauregard, 2 vols. (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1884), I, p. 302; O.R., 1, x, Pt. 1, p. 521.
18. Upon receiving orders that his regiment was to attack the enemy battery, Colonel Mouton sent Captain Druilhet and twelve men of Company A to reconnoiter the Federal postion. Returning to his lines, Druilhet reported that the battery was supported by three regiments. Moutin, anxious about the lives of his men, asked Pond whether the order was final, and the later replied that it was, having apparently come from General Hardee. Mouton then ordered his men forward. Le Meschacébé, Apr. 19, 1862; O.R., 1, X, Pt. 1, pp. 517, 521-22.
19. The Federal units here were the 8th and 18th Illinois regiments and the 13th Iowa Regiment of Brigadier General John A. McClernand's division and Battery D, 1st Illinois Artillery. O.R., 1, X, Pt. 1, pp. 118, 124, 135, 132.
20. For a description of the attack by the Orleans Guard, see Bartlett, Military Record of Louisiana, "Louisiana Troops in the West," pp. 18-19.
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