Optional page text here. Pvt. James Van Zandt Hutchins

Pvt. James Van Zandt Hutchins

Private James Van Zandt Hutchins
Company G
16th Texas Infantry
Walker's Texas Division


James Hutchins was nineteen-years-old when he enlisted at Austin in company G of Colonel George M. Flournoyís 16th Texas Infantry Regiment. Most likely, the photograph was taken about this time. The elaborate backdrop and artistic pose suggest that an experienced photographer in an established gallery took the photograph.
Hutchins is dressed in what appears to be civilian attire. However, an inscribed ink note on the back of the photograph states that the clothing was his Confederate uniform. Hutchins wears a white shirt and cravat, in addition to a frock coat, vest and trousers that are made of matching cloth of unknown color. His most conspicuous attire is the large plains style hat with low crown and very wide brim. Private Hutchins is equipped with his own fancy Kentucky rifle. He also carries an unknown type of pistol, worn reversed in a large flap holster. His leather waist belt has a nondescript buckle.
Private Hutchins served continuously with the 16th Texas from the time of his enlistment in 1862 until January 1864. During this period, he participated in several skirmishes, and was present when Confederate forces attacked the Federal garrison at Millikenís Bend, near Vicksburg, Mississippi. He was ďabsent with leaveĒ from January until March 4, 1864. He returned in time to participate in the Confederate victories at the Battles of Mansfield and Pleasant Hill, Louisiana, and again at Jenkinís Ferry, Arkansas.
Sometime early in 1865, Hutchins ended his service with the 16th Texas Infantry. A notation in his service record indicates that he had been sick since February 25, and that he returned to Austin on a sugeonís certificate of disability. A month after he returned to Austin, the other men other regiment began the slow march back to Texas, arriving at Hempstead on April 15. Rather than formally surrender, the regiment simply disbanded and its commander Colonel Flournoy fled to Mexico, where he served for a while with Maximilianís forces.
Source: 1999 Confederate Calendar, Larry Jones, Confederate Calendar Works, Austin Texas.

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