CAJUNS, CREOLES, PIRATES AND PLANTERS
Your New Louisiana Ancestors Format
Volume 3, Number 51
LOUISIANA VOLUNTEERS: The Confederate Tigers was a front-line Louisiana unit from Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia and was involved in the thick of the fighting in the East in virtually every battle. Its hard service included Stonewall Jackson’s Valley Campaign, the Seven Days, Second Manassas, Sharpsburg, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. After recuperating, the Bloody 6th went on through the horrendous battles of 1864, the long siege of Petersburg, and the sad drama of Appomattox Court House.
James P. Gannon, a journalist and former editor with the Wall Street Journal, spent years in libraries and research facilities. The result is a book grounded on a treasure trove of journals, diaries, newspaper accounts, and letter collections, all of which combine to recount the 6th Louisiana’s history from the very beginning. In addition to the battles and marches, the author of this work presents a first-hand look at the men – who they were, where they came from, how they were raised for service, and the importance of their Irish heritage to their lives and belief systems.
Irish Rebels, Confederate Tigers, A History of the 6th Louisiana Volunteers, 1861-1865 is an excellent look at this period of American history, and a lot of great genealogical material can be found within its pages. This is the first study ever undertaken of the 6th Louisiana Volunteer Infantry, one of the Fighting Tiger regiments. This predominantly Irish unit was raised in New Orleans shortly after secession.
These Louisianians opened their service with Stonewall Jackson in the Shenandoah Valley Campaign of 1862, where they experienced bitter fighting at Port Republic and suffered heavy losses. After fighting in the Seven Days’ Battles at Gaines’ Mill and Malvern Hill, they tramped north to defend the unfinished railroad cut at Second Manassas, crossed into Maryland, and died by the score in the corner of the bloody cornfield at Sharpsburg. After more Louisianians fell in the Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville campaigns, the Irishmen marched north to Gettysburg, where they assaulted East Cemetery Hill on July 2, 1863. They persevered through the disaster at Rappahannock Station, and the freezing cold winter weather of the Mine Run Campaign.
The spring of 1864 opened with the battles of the Wilderness and Spotsylvania, where in the latter combat the Louisianians fought in the swirling hell known as “Mule Shoe.” Called back into the Valley with Jubal Early, they marched to the very gates of Washington before suffering a string of devastating defeats at Third Winchester, Fisher’s Hill, and Cedar Creek. By the time the proud regiment reached the trenches of Petersburg, its original compliment of almost 1,000 soldiers had been whittled down to less than 75 men. Few were left when General Robert E. Lee surrendered his army at Appomattox Court house in April of 1865.
This is really a heartrending study and told so well by Gannon. A meticulously detailed and complete biographical roster of every soldier of the 6th Louisiana Volunteers is included here. Excellent in all respects, this is a first-class piece of writing and documentation. The hardcover edition of this book originally sold for $32.95 and was published by Savas Publishing Company and distributed by Stackpole Books. Excellence even carried through to the use of acid-free paper along with lots of pictures and illustrations.
MEETING SCHEDULED: Stephen V. Estopinal has announced that the next general membership meeting of the Canary Islanders Heritage Society will take place 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 3, at the Louisiana State Archives Building, 3851 Essen Lane, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Persons interested in Spanish Colonial Louisiana history or tracing their Canary Islander ancestry are invited to attend. Information about the Canary Islanders Heritage Society of Louisiana can be found on the web at www.canaryislanders.org. You may contact the president of the society by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
GRAVOIS DATA: Roland Anthony Gravois presents three hundred years of Gravois history and in many cases at least twelve generations of genealogy in La Famille Gravois, les Trois Cents Annees Passees.
Gravois spent thirty years researching this family before coming up with this great genealogical book. His research begins with the original Louisiana ancestor Joseph Gravois, who married Marie Cyr (Sire) in Beaubassin, Acadia, and according to their marriage license, Joseph’s parents were Joseph Gravois and Marie Muner/Mignier. It is unknown whether this Joseph was born in Acadia or in France. Joseph was their only son, born in 1692 in Port Royal. Marie was a daughter of Pierre Sire and Claire Cormier.
This huge volume contains a wealth of information on this family, and anyone with a direct or allied line can connect to this original ancestor who settled in Ascension Parish. The book is well documented, contains pictures, and is written in a narrative style which is easily readable. The author has done a fine job incorporating source material relative to the times and area in which the family lived.
This 1997 publication was available at one time from the author at his New Orleans address. Check on line to see if it is still available. This review copy is being donated to the Veach-Foshee Memorial Library Collection in Mansfield, Louisiana.
FREE SERVICE: Correspondence to this column should be directed to Damon Veach, Cajuns, Creoles, Pirates and Planters, 709 Bungalow Lane, Baton Rouge, LA 70802-5337. The e-mail address is email@example.com. Queries can be any length, and book reviews are printed as space permits, and you are encouraged to take advantage of this free service. All genealogical/historical/preservation books are reviewed in this column format, but a review copy is necessary for this service. Another service is offered here too. Claitor’s Publishing can serve as a distributor for self-published genealogy titles. Go to their homepage for details on how you can obtain this excellent service. It is a way to get out-of-print books back into the system and definitely is a great assistance to genealogists who may need this information.
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