William Tatum Wofford was born on June 28, 1824 in Habersham County, Georgia. A lawyer and community leader, who was one of the three Cass County representatives who voted against seceding from the union.|
William T. Wofford served as a Cavalry Captain in the Mexican War; ran his Plantation; published a newspaper; and sat in the state legislature as a firm anti-secessionist. However, when his state left the Union he volunteered as Colonel, 18th Georgia Regiment of Volunteer Infantry, C.S.A.
As commander of the 18th georgia Regiment of Volunteer Infantry, he first served in North Carolina and then he and his regiment were assigned as one of the non-Texas regiments (Hamptons Legion was from South Carolina) to General John Bell Hood's Texas Brigade. After the Seven Days'Battles, he led Hood's Texas Brigade at 2nd Bull Run (General Hood was given a Division), South Mountain, and Antietam, and was appointed Brig. General on April 23, 1863.
In November of 1862, the 18th Georgia Regiment of Volunteer Infantry was transferred to General T.R.R. Cobb's Brigade, a law having been passed in the Confederate Congress requiring State units to serve together. At Chancellorsville and Gettysburg he succeeded to command of Cobb's Brigade and went with Longstreet to the West.
He fought under Kershaw around Richmond, Petersburg and the Shenandoah and was wounded at the Wilderness and at Spotsylvania. In late December of 1864, Gov. Joe E. Brown requested General Wofford be given command of the Georgia Department.
On January 20, 1865 he was put in command of the Department of Northern Georgia to protect the citizens from bushwhackers and guerrillas. In his final act of service to the Confederacy, General Wofford surrendered the last Southern troops east of the Mississippi, on May 12, 1865 at Resaca. Below is the letter from Union General Judah to Union Chief of Staff in the Department of the Cumberland...General Whipple, discussing the surrender of these troops:
Camp McDonald, shows the position of the 1st Regiment, later to be the 18th Georgia Regiment of Volunteer Infantry
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF THE EATOWAH,
Chattanooga, May 16, 1865.|
Brigadier General W. D. WHIPPLE,
Chief of Staff, Department of the Cumberland:
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that on the 12th instant I received, at Kingston, Ga., the surrender of General Wofford, C. S. Army, and his command which reached numerically before I left 6,000 My letter to General Wofford offering to parole all Confederate officers and soldiers whom he reported to me [as] such, coupled with my determined to treat as outlaws all who did not thus report to him, had the effect of bringing in nearly if not quite al of the mischievous element scattered through the northern counties of the State. Many of these men have been guilty of gross barbarities and deserve death, but out of consideration for the future peace and welfare of the country I deemed it the more politic course to ignore the past and get rid of them in the most summary manner. it was generally understood among them that, although by the terms of their parole they were not to be interfered with by the military authorities, they were still liable to civil prosecution for offenses committed against the persons and property of citizens of Georgia; and the most of them, as I am informed by General Wofford, are on this account prepared to leave the country as soon as paroled.
Through an unfortunate misunderstanding on the part of General Wofford of a portion of the fourth article of agreement, and which I must admit might be susceptible of his interpretation, the enlisted men came in with his promise that their private horses would not be taken. Fearing that, should I repudiate his assurance, a stampede would result among those who claimed their horses as private property, I deemed it best to permit those who were willing to swear to the ownership of their horses to retain them as a loan by the United States Government to be used upon their farms, assuring them that the claims of citizens subsequently proved would be supported. I made arrangements, in accordance with a verbal agreement to that effect, with General Wofford, to continue paroling his men as they came in until the 20th instant. As soon as it is completed I will forward the aggregate off officers and men paroled, an arms and other property turned over.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
H. M JUDAH,
General Wofford was elected to Congress in 1865, but was refused a seat by the Republican majority. He was then active in railroading and public education.|
General William Tatum Wofford died on May 22, 1884, near Cass Station, Georgia.
The Cassville Confederate Cemetery, located in a peaceful country setting, is the final resting place for 300 unknown soldiers of the Civil War. The cemetery lies just west of the eastern ridge where Confederate troops prepared to do battle. Their trenches remain along with a Confederate Monument placed in honor of those who died at the hospitals in Cassville. In May 1899 the Cassville Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy honored the dead by placing headstones at each of the graves.
Along with the unknown is the grave of General William T. Wofford, as he was during the war, forever with those men who fought to protect their state and their country.
General William Tatum Woffords Headstonein Cassville Confederate Cemetery||Historical marker at Cassville Confederate Cemetery
Appointment to Brigadier General
Excerpt from the Journals of the Congress of the Confederate States of America, 1861-1865
The following message was received from the President of the Confederate States, by Mr. B. N. Harrison, his Secretary:|
Richmond, January 23, 1863.
To the Senate of the Confederate States:
Agreeably to the recommendation of the Secretary of War, I nominate the officers on the accompanying list to the rank affixed to their names, respectively.
Confederate States of America, War Department,
Richmond, January 22, 1863.
Sir: I have the honor to recommend the following nominations for appointment in the Provisional Army of the Confederate States of America:
Brig. Gen. Isaac R. Trimble, to be major-general, Maryland; Brig. Gen. Jubal A. Early, to be major-general, Virginia; Brig. Gen. Joseph Wheeler, to be Major-General, Georgia.
Col. Robert F. Hoke, to be brigadier-general, North Carolina; Col. H. L. Benning, to be Brigadier-General, Georgia; Col. W. T. Wofford to be Brigadier-General, Georgia; Col. Samuel McGowan, to be Brigadier-General, South Carolina; Col. M. A. Stovall, to be Brigadier-General, Georgia; Col. George B. Cosby, to be Brigadier-General, Kentucky; Col. Frank C. Armstrong, to be Brigadier-General, Arkansas.
Appointed, Joseph M. Jayne, Forty-eighth Mississippi Regiment, Mississippi.
Promoted, John E. Penn, Forty-second Virginia Regiment, Virginia.
Promoted, John J. Wade, Fifty-fourth Virginia Regiment, Virginia.
Promoted, H. A. Edmundson, Twenty-seventh Virginia Battalion, Virginia.
Promoted, John E. Penn, Forty-second Virginia Regiment, promoted colonel, Virginia.
Promoted, John S. Deyerle, Fifty-fourth Virginia Regiment, Virginia.
Promoted, John E. Penn, Forty-second Virginia Regiment, promoted lieutenant-colonel, Virginia.
I am, sir, respectfully, your obedient servant,
JAMES A. SEDDON,
Secretary of War.
Order of Secession of the Sovereign State of Georgia
We the people of the State of Georgia in Convention
assembled do declare and ordain and it is hereby
and ordained that the ordinance adopted by the
State of Georgia in convention on the 2nd day of
Jan. in the the
year of our Lord seventeen hundred and
eighty-eight, whereby the constitution of the United
States of America
was assented to, ratified and adopted, and also all
acts and parts of acts of the general assembly of
ratifying and adopting amendments to said
constitution, are hereby repealed, rescinded and
We do further declare and ordain that the union now
existing between the State of Georgia and other
the name of the United States of America is hereby
dissolved, and that the State of Georgia is in full
possession and exercise of all those rights of
sovereignty which belong and appertain to a free and
Passed January 19, 1861.