Alex C. Copeland was born in about 1843 in Hardin County, Tennessee. His name appears as Alexander on the 1850 census of Hardin County, in the household of his parents. They lived in the vicinity of the town of Savannah.
At the time of the 1860 census he was living in the town of Montgomery, Texas, with his parents, William Campbell Coopland and Mary Ann Outlaw. Though both of Alexs parents were born in Texas, according to this census, they were actually born in Hardin County,Tennessee, according to the Gibbs Family Tree and other descendants records. The family is said to have migrated to Texas in 1853.
Alex joined Captain Wooldridge's company of cavalry volunteers in April, 1862. This company later was designated Company B, 24th Regiment Texas Cavalry. He was a private. He was enrolled at the town of Montgomery on April 8, by C. L. S. Jones. He gave his age as eighteen, the value of his horse as $100.00, and his equipment as $15.00. He had to ride fifty miles to the place of rendezvous, Camp Carter at Hempstead.
Alex appears on only one roll besides the muster-in roll at Camp Carter on April 28th.
In May of that year, 1862, after cavalry training at Camp Carter, the three thousand men of Carters Brigade gathered at Crockett and began the long march to Arkansas. It wasnt long before they were struck by disease. Measles, particularly, was rampant at this time, and men were housed in private homes along the route. Fellow soldiers were assigned to stay behind as their nurses.
Alex died on June 21st, one day after another soldier in his company had succumbed. That soldier was Larkin Roten.
Alexs untimely death at the age of nineteen is noted on the muster roll of August 31, 1862.
Alex may have been buried in a local church cemetery, possibly in a village known as Vernon, or Mt. Vernon, Smith County, where many of the sick men were housed. The village was near a post office named Seven Leagues. However, Alex's exact place of death and his place of burial are unknown.
His parents and their family were enumerated in the Boggy Precinct of Montgomery County in the 1870 census, and there are numerous descendants living throughout Texas.
The foregoing was compiled from county and census records, from the Copeland vertical files at Montgomery County Memorial Library, and from the Compiled Service Records on file in the National Archives. Note that one CSR in his file regarding admission to a Houston hospital actually belongs in the file of James L. Copeland of Wilson's - Gonzales' - Hughes' Battery, Texas Artillery.
Thanks to Frank Johnson for pointing out corrections needed on Copeland's page, and for discovering where the stray CSR Copeland file belongs. Thanks also to Dennis Copeland, descendant of Alex's brother Reuben, for additional information on the family. Reuben Copeland, born in 1848, was awarded a Civil War pension by the State of Texas, and is one of the youngest soldiers from the county with proven service in the Confederate army.
For further information and records of all Confederate soldiers of Montgomery County, Texas, as well as histories of the regiments they served in, see Montgomery County, Texas, CSA by Frank M. Johnson. The book may be purchased by visiting Frank's website at frankmjohnson.net or by contacting Frank at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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