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Private Andrew Jackson Moss

Private Andrew Jackson Moss
Company E, Infantry Battalion

Little information has been found regarding the ancestry and early life of Andrew Jackson Moss. His descendants advise that he was married with a young son as war clouds gathered in 1861. We know that he enlisted in the Blue Ridge Rifles of Lumpkin County soon after war broke out in 1861. This company would march to Camp McDonald at Big Shanty (now Kennesaw) Georgia and be enlisted into the 4th Georgia State Brigade's Rifle Battalion on July 9th 1861. Moss listed his age on this date as 22.

Following the demise of this brigade at the beginning of August, the company was attached to the newly formed Phillips Legion and designated Company E. Surviving muster rolls indicate him to have been a highly reliable soldier who was present with his company on all of it's many battlefields during 1862 and 1863. These included Second Manassas, South Mountain, Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Knoxville. A muster roll dated October 5th 1864 lists him as being AWOL (Absent Without Leave) and a later roll dated January 30th 1865 states that he deserted at Petersburg, Virginia on June 30th 1864. We gain a bit more insight from a letter written home from Petersburg by Lt A J Reese of Company E. After noting that the company is down to sixteen men he states "I am sorry to say that five of the boys deserted a few nights ago. Two of them were very poor soldiers, H Davis and M M Grizzle. But Moss and the two Norrises (Alford & Wesley) were very good soldiers."

We know that Moss made it back to Georgia in 1864 from information provided by his descendants who relate that he was killed by the Home Guard at Silver City, Forsyth County Georgia late in the war while trying to return to his unit. He was buried next to the road where he was killed in an unmarked grave. It was also said that Moss's family felt he had been murdered and that his son A J Moss Jr plotted (unsuccessfully) after the war to murder the man responsible for the death of his father (possibly Col J J Findley). Moss's wife Elizabeth remarried in 1867. His son A J "Jackson" Moss Jr married Margaret Lingerfelt in 1878 and had a family of eight. There are probably over one hundred descendants of A J Moss in Lumpkin County today.

Photo courtesy of Mr J C Moss of Dahlonega, Ga., great grandson of A J Moss

Written by:Kurt Graham