Andrew Jefferson Caldwell a POW at Camp Chase
The compiler would like to thank Gregory C. White who wrote the book on the 31st Regiment Georgia Infantry for finding the story about Andrew Jefferson Caldwell and letting me know about it.
The compiler notes there were a couple of words that were repeatedly misspelled and were corrected. One was spelled as Resacca and corrected to Resaca and the other was Johnson and corrected to Johnston. Also brackets were installed with dates so the reader could easier follow the time line of events.
To give the reader an approximate area of where Walker County was in Georgia, much of the Battle of Chickamauga [September 19 and 20, 1863] was fought in Walker County.
Andrew Jefferson Caldwell; born February 24, 1845. Died April 4, 1931.
In the 1984 book "Walker County Georgia Heritage, 1838-1983", page 8, is a rather descriptive reminisce of Camp Chase by Andrew Jefferson Caldwell, 1st Georgia State Troops”
“The following is “”THE UNFINISHED EXPERIENCES OF ANDREW JEFFERSON CALDWELL,”” a pioneer citizen of Walker County. (Georgia) These experiences were kindly submitted by Dorothy Groover Worth.”
“In July, 1863, I left home and joined the Army. I joined the First Georgia State Troops, Colonel Brant’s Regiment. Governor Joe Brown had a regiment for States’ Service to guard bridges and for the States Defense. Two or three companies were stationed at Resaca, Georgia to guard the bridge on the State Road. I joined Captain [William] Howe’s Company. We had to work to build forts and breastworks to protect the bridge for fear of raids to destroy it. We stayed in Resaca the winter of 1863. I don’t remember the date, but it was an awfully cold time. It snowed two or three inches deep.
Our company got word there was going to be a battle in Dalton, so we were sent there. We started early in the morning. It was awfully cold. We had to march and some of the boys had no shoes. When we got to Dalton there was no battle but we stayed all night and next day went back to Resaca.
The army began to fall back to Marietta and we were sent there. While I was on guard duty that night I broke out with the measles. When the officer of the day came around on his inspection I told him my condition and he had me relieved but I never did recollect how I got to the hospital. Someone notified my folks and father came to see me in the hospital. I was sick for some time and that was the only time I was away from camp duties. [The distance from La Fayette, Georgia where his father had been living to Marietta, Georgia was about 85 to 95 miles]
After the Battle of Resaca, [The Battle of Resaca fought May 13-15, 1864] General Joe Johnston fell back south of the Conasauga River. Our officers petitioned General Johnston to attach the Second Georgia Regiment, so we marched to the front at New Hope Church. [Distance from Resaca, Georgia to the Battle of New Hope Church was about 100 miles) We went right into the fighting at once, without any training. The first of our regiment wounded was John Clements. He was wounded with a piece of shell on the head. When he was carried out I thought he was killed at the Battle of New Hope Church. [Battle of New Hope Church fought May 25 and 26, 1864.] [Reported as Private John A. Clements of Company I of the 1st Georgia State Troops and would also be captured on August 7, 1864 and taken to Camp Chase and also would be exchanged on March 18, 1865 at Camp Chase to Point Lookout, Maryland]
The next fighting was at Kennesaw Mountain. [Battle of Kennesaw Mountain fought June 27, 1864] Johnston did not lose but a few men but he killed many of the Federals. The Confederates pulled the artillery up the mountain. I helped carry the shells up. It was mighty steep. On top, when the fog passed away in the valley, I had a good view of Sherman’s Army. The men looked small but thick as blackbirds. I don’t know the distance, but it must have been from one to two miles to them. When the Federal’s came on Johnston was ready for them. Sherman lost many men but Johnston lost few. If Sherman had not have had two to four, to Johnston’s one, he could not have gone anywhere when it came to fighting.
There was more or less fighting every day until we fell back to Atlanta. General Hood was put in command in the place of General Johnston [Hood took command on July 17, 1864] and he gave the Federals time to build good breastworks before the general battle of July 22nd, when he had the breastworks changed. We captured their works and lost thousands of men but it kept Sherman out of the city for several weeks. Our brigade was the last that captured the works but did not hold them long. On the right wing Hood drove the Federals backs several miles, killing and wounding many.
The Yankees held their army until we got close to their works. That being the first time our regiment was in a general engagement, we went right ahead until they had a close fire on us. Our regiment just lacked a few men of losing half. Our company lost one-half in just a few minutes so we had to fall back to our breastworks.
On the 7th day of August I was captured [Battle of Utoy Creek fought August 5 through 7, 1864] with sixty-five of our regiment of officers and privates and taken to Camp Chase Ohio Prison. We got there the 18th of August. They put us in closed box cars, as many in a car as it would hold, with guards at the doors. Before we got to prison they searched our pockets. They took my pocket knife and two minnie balls that had struck me. They were spent balls, one of them might have killed me if it had not been for a thick canteen and a cup I had which it struck. I was hurt but the skin not broken. The other ball that hit me dropped in my pocket. It struck a tree and bounced back and struck my side just above my coat pocket, which was a short Army coat. I wanted to keep them but they would not let me. I was struck with three balls and never had the skin broken. Although they hurt me some I never lost but little time from duty in Camp Chase.
There were three prisons side by side with a high wall with a project for the guards to walk around each prison. The prison was from one to three acres with tiny barred houses. They would hold about 100 men with a row of bunks on each side with a narrow passage in between. The bunks were three high and would hold twelve or more men. The houses were built with just a single wall up and down. This was well covered with paper, then tar and gravel. We had one big stove for each house and the winter of ’64 was an awfully cold one. The ground was covered all winter with snow. We were fed very well for about two or three weeks, then they cut the quantity about one-half and would not let us buy anything from the jailers store to eat. We got mighty hungry and we suffered a lot from the cold. We had very little straw and one blanket to lie on.
They got up an exchange in March, 1865. The Federals did everything they could to get the prisoners not to go on exchange. They wanted us to stay there and take the oath promise. If we would as soon as they got their exchange, they would give us free transportation anywhere in the lines. There were lots of our men that stayed. They suffered so much and were so dishearted they signed the oath and were put in the ditches in the Virginia Army.
Most of the men from Walker County stayed to come home. They begged me to stay but I told them I had two brothers in Virginia and I wanted to go where they were. I was so tired of prison life I was determined to get out the first chance. So about the middle of March, one cold morning, we left the prison before daylight. We had to march to Columbus to get on the train. When they took us outside the prison wall they formed us in a line. All I had was a knit warm blue blouse I had bought, and a thick blanket, but it seemed I would freeze to death before we started to Columbus. Two of our boys died in camp, Sam McWhorter [Private Samuel McWhorter of Company C of the 1st Georgia State Troops died on September 15, 1864 and buried in grave number 247 at the Camp Chase Cemetery] and Noah Marideth [Noah Meredith of Company C of the 1st Georgia State Troops died on August 16, 1864 and buried in grave number 208 at the Camp Chase Cemetery] We found in prison several Walker Citizens, Mr. Davison, Mr. Matthew Brown, Morgan and Charlie Allen. Both of the Allen’s died in prison. Captain Sharp of the Home Guard was there.”
The 1850 United States census listed Jefferson Caldwell, born about 1845 in Georgia and living in the household of Andrew H. Caldwell, born about 1806 in South Carolina and what appears to be his wife Delilah Caldwell, born about 1809 in Tennessee. Other household members were: James Caldwell*, born about 1838 in Georgia and Delilah J. Caldwell, born about 1840 in Georgia and William Caldwell, born about 1849 in Georgia and Richard (Spelled as) Hazlereod, born about 1829 in Tennessee and Mary Hazlereod, born about 1831 in Tennessee (The compiler notes other ancestry transcribers have spelled the surname in other ways) and William (Spelled as) Baty, born about 1829 in Georgia. The household was living in the Chattanooga Valley (The compiler notes from looking at the copy of the census that it should have been the Chattooga Valley) in Walker County, Georgia and the census was enumerated on September 24, 1850.
Chattooga and Walker Counties in Georgia are adjacent and Chattooga County was established in 1838.
The above asterisk in the 1850 United State census refers to Private James McReynolds Caldwell a private in Company G of the 9th Regiment Georgia Infantry. The Find A Grave contributor did an excellent job about his short biography and he died in June 1862 and was the brother of Andrew Jefferson Caldwell. See Find A Grave Memorial # 55414181 under PVT James McReynolds Caldwell.
The 1860 United States census listed Andrew J. Caldwell, born about 1845 in Georgia and listed as attending school within the year and living in the household of (Spelled as) A. H. Caldwell, born about 1805 in Georgia and what appears to be his wife Delilah Caldwell, born about 1809 in Tennessee. Other family household members were: Mary M. E. Caldwell, born about 1831 in Tennessee and William R. Caldwell, born about 1849 in Georgia. The family household was living in the Town District in Walker County, Georgia and the nearest Post Office was reported as Lafayette and the census was enumerated on June 8, 1860.
The compiler notes the 1st Georgia State Troops is a difficult unit to research. So many times they are listed just with the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry. The 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry and the 1st Georgia State Troops are an entirely a different unit. The 1st Georgia State Troops was a unit among many State Troops sometimes referred to as Joe Brown’s Pets. Governor Brown had been the Confederate Governor of Georgia and wanted soldiers to defend the State of Georgia and not be called out of State. To entice men he offered duty within the State of Georgia in 1863. This of course did not sit well with President Davis and sometimes these troops were taken out of State and against Brown’s wishes. Brown had founded his argument on State Rights.
Compiled Military Service Records stated Andrew J. Caldwell was with Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry and only has Federal POW Records. (However his enlistment records in Company C of the 1st Georgia State Troops were found at the Georgia Archives and will be noted afterward).
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) Andrew J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a roll of prisoners of war at Nashville, Tennessee captured by forces under Major General W. T. Sherman commanding Military Division of the Mississippi and forwarded to Captain (Stephen Edward) Jones A. D. C. (Aide-De-Camp) District of Kentucky at Louisville, Kentucky on August 15, 1864. Roll dated Headquarters Department Cumberland Office Provost Marshal General at Nashville, Tennessee on August 15, 1864 and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) Andrew Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a roll of prisoners of war who arrived at the Military Prison in Louisville, Kentucky during the five days ending August 15, 1864. Roll dated Louisville, Kentucky on August 16, 1864 and had been sent to Louisville, Kentucky from Nashville, Tennessee (On the Louisville & Nashville Railroad) and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) And’w J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a roll of prisoners of war received at the Military Prison in Louisville, Kentucky and discharged to Camp Chase on August 16, 1864 and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) And’w J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a roll of prisoners of war received on August 15, 1864 at the Military Prison in Louisville, Kentucky and discharged to Camp Chase on August 16, 1864 and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) And’w J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a roll of prisoners of war forwarded to Camp Chase, Ohio from the Military Prison in Louisville, Kentucky on August 16, 1864. Roll dated at Louisville, Kentucky on August 16, 1864 and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) Andrew J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a descriptive roll of prisoners of war received on August 18, 1864 at Camp Chase, Ohio and had been sent from Louisville, Kentucky by order of Captain (Stephen Edward) Jones and date of departure from Camp Chase was March 18, 1865 and under remarks stated transferred to Point Lookout, Maryland and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on “July” 7, 1864.
The compiler notes the incorrect date of capture as July 7, 1864 and believes the correct date was August 7, 1864. The Federal POW Records were not perfect at times and this is a good example.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) Andrew J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia Infantry appeared on a roll of prisoners of war transferred from Camp Chase, Ohio to Point Lookout, Maryland on March 18, 1865 for exchange and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
Federal POW Records stated Private (Spelled as) A. J. Caldwell of Company C of the 1st Georgia Infantry name appeared as a signature to a roll of prisoners of war paroled at Camp Chase, Ohio and transferred to Point Lookout on March 18, 1865. Roll dated Headquarters Camp Chase, Ohio on March 18, 1865 and noted as captured near Atlanta, Georgia on August 7, 1864.
The compiler notes the memory of Andrew Jefferson Caldwell appears to be quite good as his Federal POW Records are exactly correct with what he had stated. The usual Confederate prisoner flow would have been for this time period and place to be taken by railroad along the Western & Atlantic to Chattanooga and then to Nashville, Tennessee by rail and then onward to Louisville, Kentucky and again boarded a train in Cincinnati, Ohio and then to the railroad depot in Columbus, Ohio and then marched about four miles west to the Camp Chase Prison.
Some may wonder why I stated Private Andrew Jefferson Caldwell was captured at the Battle of Utoy Creek. In the book by William Hiram Duff who had been with a Louisiana unit wrote a book published in 1907 and named Terrors and Horrors of Prison Life or Six months a prisoner at Camp, Chase, Ohio. In the book Private Duff stated he and a great many other Confederates were captured at the Battle of Utoy Creek, Georgia on August 7, 1864. Private Duff goes into great detail about the Battle and his time at Camp Chase, Ohio. And the compiler notes according to the Official Records of the War of the Rebellion not other engagements were fought on that date during the Atlanta Campaign.
Records located at the Georgia Archives stated Private (Spelled as) Jefferson Caldwell enlisted in July 28, 1863 in Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia State Troops The citation is Confederate Muster Rolls, Adjutant General’s Office, Record Group 22-1-63; Georgia Archives.
Records located at the Georgia Archives and dated September 30, 1863 stated Private (Spelled as) Jefferson Caldwell enlisted on July 28, 1863 in Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia State Troops and paid $22.00 on September 30, 1863 and signed his name as Jeff Caldwell and listed the company in camp at Camp Wayne. [Located near Resaca, Georgia in Gordon County]
The compiler notes information taken from the internet about Camp Wayne. “Camp Wayne – Resaca – Named for General Henry Wayne, Camp Wayne was established in 1863 in anticipation of the Union Army’s capture of Chattanooga and likely invasion of North Georgia. Wayne was a Georgia State General in charge of state defenses along the Western and Atlantic Railroad. The Resaca Bridge was one of the most important structures between Chattanooga and Atlanta. Confederate Troops were garrisoned in various areas around Resaca from the start of the war through the Battle of Resaca. Camp Wayne in 1863 was the largest of these Georgia State Camps.”
Records located at the Georgia Archives and dated November 30, 1863 stated Private (Spelled as) Jeff Caldwell enlisted in July 1863 in Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia State Troops and paid $22.00 on November 30, 1863 and signed his name as Jeff Caldwell and noted Company C at Camp Wayne. [Located near Resaca, Georgia in Gordon County]
Records located at the Georgia Archives stated Private (Spelled as) Jeff Caldwell enlisted in July 1863 in Company C of the 1st Regiment Georgia State Troops last paid $22.00 on January 31, 1864 and noted as sick in hospital at Marietta, Georgia.
Andrew Jefferson Caldwell applied for a Confederate pension and listed his unit as Company C of the 1st Georgia State Troops. He was denied a Confederate pension because of his financial situation.
The compiler notes the car in the photograph was identified by Mitch King as a 1928 Chevy four door Sedan Imperial Landau. The man to the left with the cane was Andrew Jefferson Caldwell.