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"The 5th Alabama Infantry Regiment Band is sponsored by the General Robert E. Rhodes Camp #262 Sons of Confederate Veterans of Tuscaloosa, Alabama. This band is a historical, patriotic, non-political, non-profit group, just as its parent organization the Sons of Confederate Veterans. The purpose of the band is to preserve the music of the War Between the States era both Southern and Northern as well as commemorating the memory of the veterans both Confederate and Union."

History of the 5th Alabama Infantry Regiment and Band
Confederate States of America
Tuscaloosa, Alabama

The following was taken from "History of the 5th Alabama Infantry Regiment and Band Confederate States of America"

Tuscaloosa County would have the distinct honor of having the first Alabama military unit leave for service in the War Between the States. This unit was the Warrior Guards, the local unit of the Alabama State Militia.

The Warrior Guards were organized in Tuscaloosa on April 3, 1820 and this distinguished and prized unit would have members in its organization only from those of the highest caliber of citizens in Tuscaloosa.

The Warrior Guards drilled daily after November 21, 1860, as Alabama was expected to secede from the Union. Commanding the Guards was Captain Robert E. Rhodes, who was a graduate of Virginia Military Institute and then as a Civil Engineer for a railroad company.

On January 10, 1861, Captain Rodes received orders from Alabama Governor A.B. Moore to report with his company to Fort Morgan, near Mobile. Two days later on January 21, the company boarded the steamer L.D. Wallace at the Tuscaloosa wharf and sailed for Mobile. There it was met by the Mobile Cadets, who escorted the local unit to their armory. From the armory they went to the Battle House where they were honored with speeches and a dinner. Early the next morning they left for assigned duty at Fort Morgan. The company remained at Fort Morgan until the middle of March 1861, when it was relieved by regular enlisted Confederate Troops and returned to Tuscaloosa. In Tuscaloosa the unit would be immediately reorganized. It is at this point that Captain Rodes began the active recruitment of musicians for the unit Band. The Band and its members would be fairly typical of military bands of that era with between 14 and 16 musicians on its muster rolls. Its members were recruited from the West Alabama areas of Tuscaloosa, Greensboro, Uniontown, Cahawba, and Faunsdale. This unit would officially appear on the muster roll of Captain E.L. Hobson’s Company I of the 5th Alabama Infantry Regiment C.S.A. from September 1, 1861 to October 31, 1861.

During this period of reorganization Captain Rodes was re-elected commanding officer. His staff included H.A. Whiting, First Lieutenant; William H. Fowler, Second Lieutenant; John H. Harris, Third Lieutenant; Dr. N. Venable, Sergeo; John Phelan, Orderly Sergeant; and Ben Woodruff, Quartermaster Sergeant.

On April; 1, 1861, the company left for Montgomery to offer its service and the Warrior Guards became officially company H, 5th Alabama Infantry Regiment, C.S.A.

Captain R.E. Rodes was elected Colonel of the Regiment and First Lieutenant H.A. Whiting was elected regimental adjutant, causing two vacancies among the commissioned officers in the company. William H. Fowler was promoted to Captain, John J. Harris to First Lieutenant, John Phelan to Second Lieutenant, and B.F. Hardwick to Third Lieutenant.

The regiment was then sent to Pensacola, Florida, where it remained for twelve days, after which it was ordered to Richmond, Virginia. Here it remained for two weeks and then received orders to go to Manassas to join the Army of Virginia. It was made a part of General Richard Stoddard Ewell’s Brigade, which was a part of General Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson’s Division. Enroute to Manassas, the 5th Alabama was fired upon several times by Federal pickets and outposts.

On the morning of the First Battle of Bull Run (June 17, 1861), the 5th Alabama were deployed as skirmisher at Farr’s X Roads to defend that sector of the field. This position was at the head of the Confederate troops. Private William Tarrant of the Taylorville community was patrolling his post when the Union advance began and he was shot through the leg, becoming the first Alabama soldier wound in this famous battle. Private Mark Weathered captured the first prisoner taken in this battle. Thus, the 5th Alabama produced the first "heroes" of that notable conflict.

During the battle, the 5th Alabama Regiment was ordered to Union Mill and waited there for further orders, but the courier sent by General P.G.T. Beauregard was killed or captured and the regiment was held in reserve during the closing hours of the battle. The regiment remained in the vicinity of Manassas during the fall and winter, and General Rodes became the Brigade commander in October - the 6th and 12th Alabama, and the 12th Mississippi, being the other regiments of the brigade.

On December 28, 1861, seventy five of the original recruits re-enlisted for the duration of the war, being the first troops in the Confederate Army to re-enlist for the duration.

Moving with the army to Yorktown in March, 1862, it there re-enlisted and reorganized. It was under fire at Yorktown , and was on the field at Williamsburg. At Seven Pines the regiment received its baptism of blood, losing 27 killed and 128 wounded. The regiment was hotly engaged at Cold Harbor and Malvern Hill, losing 15 killed and 58 wounded. It was not at the second Manassass battle, but moved into Maryland, and shared in the stubborn conflicts at Boonsboro and Sharpsburg (Antietam), losing 11 killed and 39 wounded out of the remnant present for duty. It was in line of battle of Marye’s Heights, and saw Union General Ambrose Burnside’s bloody repulse at Fredericksburg; and with General Robert E. Lee’s at his stunning victory over Union General Joseph Hooker at Chancellorsvile. It was part of the invincible line under Rodes that swept everything before it; reaping its brightest renown and losing heavily. It moved into Maryland and Pennsylvania on the Gettysburg campaign, and its loss was very severe in that battle. General Robert E. Rodes was killed at Manchester, in 1864, while leading his men in a counter attack against the Union forces. He had the distinct honor of being one of the youngest Major Generals on either side. Having wintered at Orange Courthouse, the 5th Alabama, now reduced to a mere skeleton, participated in the Battles of the wilderness and Spottsylvania, without severe loss. It took part in the subsequent operations as the lines began to be drawn around Petersburg, losing slightly at the second Cold Harbor. It went with General Jubal A. Early into the Shenandoah Valley and across the Potomac, taking part in numerous engagements, including the assault on Washington, D.C. Losing severely at Winchester, Virginia, it soon reformed and took its place in the memorable trenches of Petersburg, and wintered there. Only 25 or 30 men were around its colors when they surrendered at Appomattox, under Captain Riley. Of the 1719 names on its muster rolls, nearly 300 men parished in battle, 240 others died in the service and 507 were discharged or transferred.

Field and Staff Officers

Colonels -
Robert E. Rodes of Tuskaloosa; promoted.
Allen C. Jones of Greene; till reorganized.
Christopher C. Pegues of Dallas; killed at First Cold Harbor.
Hosephus Hall of Clarke; wounded at Spottsylvania; resigned.
Edwin LaFayette Hobson of Greene.

Lieutenant Colonels -

Allen C. Jones; promoted.
John T. Morgan of Dallas; resigned.
Josephus Hall; promoted.
Edwin L. Hobson; promoted.
Eugene Blackford of Barbour.

Majors -

John T. Morgan; promoted.
H.A. Whiting of Tuskaloosa; transferred to General Rodes’ staff.
E.L. Hobson’; promoted.
Eugene Blackford; promoted.

Adjutants -
H.A. Whiting; promoted.
Robert I. Smith of Mobile; till reorganized.
Charles J. Pegues of Dallas.

Captains and Home Counties

Tuskaloosa -
Wm. H. Fowler - transferred to artillery.

Greene -
E.L. Hobson - promoted.
J.W. Williams - captured at Boonsboro.

Pickens -
Syd. H. Ferguson - till reorganization.
T.C. Belsher - wounded.

Sumter -
John H. Dent.
N.R.E. Ferguson - killed at Wilderness.
James H. Holmes.

Dallas -
C.C. Pegues - promoted.
E.B. Moseley

Clarke -
Josephus Hall - promoted.
E.B. Moseley

Monroe -
Giles Goode - died in the service.
T.J. Riley.

Barbour -
Eugene Blackford - promoted.
L.S. Chitwood.

Lowndes (1862) -
D.W. Johnson - killed at Cold Harbor.
Thomas S. Herbert - resigned.
John M. Gilchrist - killed at Second Cold Harbor.

Talladega -
Charles M. Shelley - resigned.
William T. Renfro - killed at Chancellorsville.
N.S. McAffee


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