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Johnson's/Hawthorn's Arkansas Infantry

Page 1


Re-Enactment at Plesant Hill Louisiana

Here is a brief history of Johnson's-Hawthorne's-Polk's Infantry Regiment (also called 39th Regiment). It was organized in the summer of 1862 and served in McRae's, Fagan's, and A.T. Hawthorne's Brigade, Trans-Mississippi Department. The unit fought at Prarie Grove, reported 237 casualaties at Helena, and was active at Bayou Fourche. Later it skirmished in a few actions in Arkansas, then was broken up before the surrender in June, 1865. The field officers were Colonels John B. Cocke, A. T. Hawthorne, Alfred W. Johnson, and Cadwallader Polk, and Lieutenant Colonel D. W. Ringo.


The following information is from Prarie Grove Battlefield State Park.

Organized by Colonel J. Johnson in late 1862, this unit bore the names of its two commanding officers, Colonel Johnson and Colonel A. T. Hawthorn.

Like almost all Civil War units, Johnson's/Hawthorn's Arkansas Infantry was also known by an alternate name derived from the name of an officer commanding a detachment of the unit at some time or place. Unofficial, alternate names of this type identified as having been used by or for the regiment are shown below.

P. G. Roper's Infantry
Walton Watkins' Infantry

It is likely that the regiment served only a twelve month period of enlistment. During this time, it belonged to two higher commands. These are listed below.

Jan. 31, 1863 Fagan's (Arkansas) Brigade, Hindman's Division, Army of Trans-Mississippi.
April 30, 1863 Fagan's Brigade, Price's Division, District of Arkansas, Trans-Mississippi Department.

During its term of service, the regiment participated in the following engagements.

Engagement, Cane Hill, Boston Mountains, Boonsboro, Ark. Nov. 28, 1862

Battle, Prarie Grove, Fayetteville (Illinois Creek), Ark. Dec. 7, 1862; Attack, Helena, Ark. 4 July 1863

Operations against Steele's Expedition against Little Rock, Ark. Aug. 1 - Sept. 14, 1863

Action, Bayou Metoe (Reed's Brigade), Ark. Aug. 27, 1863

Engagement, Bayou Fourche and Capture, Little Rock, Ark. Sept. 11 - 13, 1853

Pursuit of Price towards Arkadelphia, Ark. Sept. 11 - 13, 1863

Shortly after the fall of Little Rock, all reference to the regiment cease in the Official Records. It is not known if the members of the unit participated in the organization of any other Arkansas units.


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