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Home: Regional: U.S. States: Mississippi: Choctaw County

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Re: Lookup for 1850 Choctaw census: Williams
Posted by: Jay Stein (ID *****4633) Date: April 28, 2004 at 17:06:38
In Reply to: Re: Lookup for 1850 Choctaw census: Williams by Charles Smith of 521

Gordon, While I have the pension records for Isaac and William Williams, respectively, I do NOT have ALL of their service records.

First, one important clarification. While I mentioned that William R. Williams enlisted at Fayetteville, Tennessee I should have qualified that statement for clarification purposes that it doesn't necessarily mean he was a "resident" of Lincoln County as Fayetteville is apparently where a number of "Western Tennessee Militia" units were formed and assembled into Regiments and Brigades from whence they began their march southward. However, most of those who did enlist IN the SERVICE OF THE UNITED STATES at Fayetteville were from the general area which included the counties of Lincoln, Bedford, Stewart, Rutherford, Smith, Dickson, Sumner, Williamson, Wilson, Davidson, etc. Also, "Service of the United States," thus officially having fought in the War of 1812, is I believe distinct from merely being in the local milita of one's residence, which was required by law in Tennessee (in order to repel and Indian Attack, or some other unexpected invasion). Thus each soldier in a company, no matter which county they considered their place of residence, would have enlisted in the same place where that particular company was formed, in this instance, Fayetteville.) However, I have seen references to the names Isaac Williams and William Williams in the records of Lincoln County, BUT that doesn't necessarily mean the references are to the Isaac Williams and William R. Williams of whom we are especially interested.

As already mentioned, there are AT LEAST two distinct Captain Isaac Williamses in the Tennessee milita during the War of 1812. One of these, NOT MINE, commanded a company in the 2nd Regiment of EAST Tennessee Miliita, and possibly he served in other units as well. (I've not concentrated on this "other" Isaac.)

"My" Capt. Isaac Williams, who was wounded at the Battle of Talladega, is not as clear as I wish it were. In his pension record there are clear references to his having served as a Captain in COLONEL NEWTON CANNON's 2nd Regiment of Volunteer Mounted Riflemen of GEN. JOHN COFFEE's Brigade. However, there are even more references in Isaac's pension records, to his being a Captain and commanding a company in COLONEL ROBERT HENRY DYER's FIRST Regiment of Volunteer Mounted Gunmen of GEN. JOHN COFFEE's Brigade. (Note: In the records, regiments of "Mounted Gunmen" are also at times given other disignations including "Mounted Riflemen," "Volunteer Calvary," and "Mounted Militia.")

Some of this confusion could be due to the following, which is confusing in itself. <Grin> General Coffee, prior to his promotion to General, had commanded the 2nd Regiment of Volunteer Mounted Riflemen. After his promotion, the Command of his former Regiment was taken over by a COLONEL JOHN ALCORN, but shortly after Alcorn took command, that regiment was merged with "COLONEL NEWTON's MOUNTED RIFLEMAN Regiment" to form the (new?) SECOND REGIMENT OF VOLUNTEER MOUNTED RIFLEMEN. This latter regiment along with COLONEL ROBERT HENRY DYER's FIRST REGIMENT, formed the Brigade under the command of Gen. COFFEE.

Isaac's pension record, along with a muster Roll of a Captain Isaac William's Company in the 1st Regiment of Colonel Dyer dated Sept. 28, 1814, at first only added to the confusion, or at least it did for me. I THINK I finally have found a parital explaination for some of my confusion.
One of the records in Isaac's pension file is a slip of paper which states that he was wounded at the battle of Talledega in Novemeber of 1813, that he was discharged on 25th December 1813 and placed on the pension roll permenantly as an invalid on 26th December 1813 (The very next day!). This, however, at first seemingly contradicts the Muster Roll which is dated September 28, 1814. Initially, I was very confused, wondering how could Isaac have been placed permenently on the Pension roll as of 26th December 1813 and then being listed on the Muster Roll of September 1814 in a unit which other papers in his pension record clearly state he served, though not necessarily at the date of the Muster Roll. At one point I wondered if two different and distinct Isaac Williamses had commanded the same company, but finally the "old brain clicked in" and I think I figured out the seemingly contradictory evidence. Isaac didn't actually begin receiving his pension on Decemeber 26th of 1813. That would NOT have been possible, because Congress hadn't even authorized a pension for the soldiers of the War of 1812 at that early date! The date of the Act was 24th April 1816! and it was not, apparently based on papers in the pension file, until 4th September 1818 that Isaac first received any money, when he was given $563.00. He received this large sum at this time because this was the total BACK PAYMENT he was due from the DATE of which it was determined his invalidism began to the date he received his first payment. The Muster Roll dated September 28, 1814 was the Begining date of the enlistement period for that particular service, and while Isaac was permenently disable in one arm, he apparently was still able to sit a horse and command a company, just as there was Lt. Gen. in Desert Storm who commanded one of the field armies even though he had only one leg, having a prothesis to replace the missing leg, or as countless others have served in the military in times of war especially, when disabled. Gen. Hood of the Confederate Army is the best example I can think of off hand as I believe that by War's end, he had lost one arm, one leg, and had other disabilitating woulds as well. In any case, it would appear that my Isaac served in both Col. Newton's regiment and in Col. Dyer's regiment. Of course, more research may show the Captain who commanded the Company of the Muster Roll of Sept. 1814 was a different Isaac and that "my" Isaac's company simply was, on the battlefield, transferred from Col. Coffee's Command to Col. Dyer's Command, just never offically on paper, but that Isaac knew he had served under both and so thus it was so stated in his pension record. ?????? <grin>

By the way, I'll try to upload a transcript I have made of the Muster Roll of Sept. 28, 1814, for the Company of Captain Isaac Williams of COl. Dyer's 1st Regiment. This is the one which lists a Nathaniel Williams as Isaac's 1st Lieutenant, as also mentions privates Ezkiel Williams and William Williams, as well as a number of soldiers named Rodgers, which I also consider significant as one of Isaac's grandsons is named Jerimiah Rodgers Williams and I can find no Rodgers connection on Jerimiah's mother side of the family.

Two final items I'll mention in this post is that there is a PRIVATE Isaac Williams who enlisted June 28th, 1814 and was discharged May 10, 1814 [sic - that's the way it reads, more than once!] who served in Captain Nathan Farmer's Company of Colonel ROBERT H. DYER's Regiment of Cavalry and Mounted Riflemen in the War of 1812. He too enlisted at Fayetteville. Then, there is a record for a CORP. Isaac Williams Capt. Glenn Owen's Co., 1st Regiment of Tennessee Mounted Volunteer Gunmen whose service commenced Sept. 28, 1814 and whose Expiration of Service is dated May 1, 1815.

--- Jay


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