Confederate ancestors of Pearl River County

Published 1:19 am Sunday, August 7, 2011

What do Carlos F. Alexander, “Babe” Bennett, “Dead Horse” Mitchell, Rutilius Calvert Mitchell, and David Warden Stockstill all have in common? They along, with a number of other men, were residents of what was Hancock County Mississippi in 1861.

They also share the honorable distinction of having enlisted in the Mississippi State Militia to guard their beloved state from Yankee invasion. These young men answered the call to arms of Governor John J. Pettus in 1861 and became known as Company G, Third Regiment Mississippi Infantry. They were also known as the “Gainesville Volunteers” because they enlisted at Gainesville, Mississippi.

In 1862, following the invasion of the Gulf Coast and the fall of New Orleans, another call to arms resulted in the enlistment of what one author has termed “Reluctant Rebels.” These men were farmers, local merchants and others who reluctantly joined the Confederate Army to protect their homes and family.

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Thus, the “Hancock Rebels” were organized at Hobolochitto, Mississippi, and mustered into Confederate service in Jackson, Mississippi, as Company C, 38th Regiment Mississippi Infantry. Serving in Company C were James M. Burge, Orlando A. Mitchell, and William G. Wheat among others.

As a member of the Pearl River Historical Society, Jerry Stough has been researching the soldiers who served in the Gainesville Volunteers and Hancock Rebels as well as members of the “Covington Rangers” who served with the Seventh Regiment Mississippi Infantry in the Army of Tennessee. He will be presenting some of his research findings at the August 10th “History ‘n Lunch” meeting of the Historical Society.

The meeting will begin at 11:30 a.m. in the meeting room of Crosby Library. It is a brown bag luncheon meeting, with dessert and drinks provided by the Historical Society. The public is invited to come, bring your brown bag lunch and share in our local history. The program will begin at noon and will be finished in time to return to work or other relaxing activities.